John Tortes “Chief” Meyers (1880-1971) was the primary catcher for Hall of Famer Christy Mathewson under the management if fellow Hall of Famer John McGraw during the highly successful early 1900s. Meyers was a member of the Cahuilla nation from Southern California, and was dubbed “chief” much to his dismay, but which seemed customary in the Major Leagues referring to any player of Native American decent. “Chief” played nine seasons for the New York Giants (1909-1915), Brooklyn Robins (1916-1917) and Boston Braves (1917). He had three consecutive seasons (1911-1913) hitting above the .300-mark: .332, .358 and .312 respectively. Coincidentally, the Giants were National League pennant winners in each of those seasons but fell short, losing the World Series in each as well. Meyers enjoyed a fourth trip to the Fall Classic with the Robins in 1916, but was again unsuccessful. Chief Meyers ended his career with a .291 career batting average with 826 hits, 276 runs and 363 RBI. Chief Meyers managed for a brief time in the minor leagues before leaving the game altogether in disgust in 1920.
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