Edd J. Roush
Born: May 8, 1893 - Oakland City, IN
Died: March 21, 1988 - Bradenton, FL
Career BA: .323
Chicago White Sox AL (1913)
Indianapolis Hoosiers FL (1914)
Newark Pepper FL (1915)
New York Giants NL (1916, 1927–1929)
Cincinnati Reds NL (1916–1926, 1931)
Between 1914 and 1927, Hall of Famer Edd Roush could basically hit .300 in his sleep. In 1917 and 1919, he led the National League, batting .341 and .321 respectively. Sandwiched between those two sterling campaigns was 1918, a season that saw Roush hit .333 and lead the NL in slugging and OPS. Roush was a man for all leagues. He broke into the Bigs with the American League’s White Sox, then hopped to the Federal League and hit .325 and .298 for the Indianapolis Hoosiers and Newark Pepper. Roush then joined the National League’s Giants for a cup of coffee before moving to the Reds midway through the 1916 season. Pitching legend Christy Mathewson also headed to Cincy in that deal.
Roush would spend the next 11 seasons with the Reds, and returned for one more season in 1931 after a three-year return to the Giants. Roush’s numbers with Cincinnati stack up with baseball’s best. He hit .331 with 1,784 hits, and had an OBP of .377 while slugging .462. In 1919, Roush led the Reds to the World Series against his old White Sox mates. He batted just .214 but Cincy beat the Pale Hose in eight games. That was, of course, the Series of the Black Sox where several members of the Chicago club tanked the Fall Classic. Throughout the remainder of his life, Roush was defensive about the controversial outcome of the Series.
Roush’s .323 career batting average was not created by bloopers and spray hits. He was one of the game’s best doubles and triples hitters throughout his career. Playing predominantly in the Deadball Era, the energetic, and at times nasty, left-handed hitter used the entire field at the plate. In addition, he was viewed by his peers as one of the game’s best outfielders with the uncanny ability to throw and catch with either hand. He was also known as a tough nut in salary negotiations. In retirement, Roush worked in local politics and banking, and was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1962. He was, in short, one of the greatest players of his generation.
– Tom and Ellen Zappala, The Cracker Jack Collection: Baseball's Prized Players. For more information on their book and/or to order a copy at a special PSA discount, visit http://crackerjackplayers.com/PSA_order.html