I have often in the past with APBA projects did things such as putting players on the teams that they debuted with, what if Nolan Ryan and Tom Seaver had long careers as Mets players? Could you imagine that rotation in the mid-1980s with Ryan, Seaver, Mike Scott & Dwight Gooden?!
Yikes! I would hate to be that lineup.
The great thing with Out of the Park 19, I am able to do such projects, I started mine in 1920, but will also do one starting in 1960, and maybe another in 2000, so I don't get stuck in one time frame too long, to keep it fresh.
Plus if I was to do this project through APBA, plus the stat-keeping, it would take my entire lifetime, plus 100 other APBA members' lifetimes.... and well, that's still not enough time.
There will be very interesting teams from year-to-year, and 1920 is no exception.
The Philadelphia Athletics were excellent at finding talent, they would build championship dynasties & then would be broken up by Connie Mack. Through this dynamic, the teams are not broken up, unless expansion comes, than those players who were acquired by the expansion teams, would go to those teams for remainder of careers.
I knew 'Shoeless Joe' Jackson debuted with the Philadelphia Athletics, but almost forgot about that while putting the teams together, I almost placed him on Cleveland, it's easy to almost overlook that, 'Shoeless' only played 10 games for the Athletics... but this project is based on who debuted with what team, so guess what? Shoeless Joe will be a lifetime Athletic in this project.
I plan to eventually start back in 1900, so its safe to say, that the Philadelphia A's would probably be a force for the first 4 decades of the century.
Here is some interesting players on certain rosters...
- Boston Red Sox - Yes, the obvious... Babe Ruth changing the fates of two baseball franchises, and joining a Hall of Fame outfield trifecta along with Tris Speaker and Harry Hooper. The Red Sox will also have Carl Mays for his career, while Gavvy Cravath is finishing up his career at this point.
- Boston Braves - Featuring three starting pitchers in Hugh McQuillan, Dolf Luque, and Art Nehf (ranging from 24-28 years of age), who in reality spent their careers, making names for themselves elsewhere. The lineup doesn't shout anything spectacular, but this does mean that Rabbit Maranville won't depart the Braves in 1921 (until returning in 1927) for the Pirates, in which he was still productive.
- Brooklyn Robins - Zack Wheat and Hi Myers are still there, but they have additional company in the lineup with Casey Stengell and Jake Daubert (who both were playing elsewhere at this point in real-life); Daubert played on the 1919 World Champion Cincinnati Reds.
- Chicago White Sox - The additions of Jack Fournier and Edd Roush do lessen the blow of no Shoeless Joe, plus Buck Weaver and Happy Felsch (thanks to Out of the Park) will not have to worry about calling it an early career. Fournier at this time (and often overlooked), was one of the most powerful bats in all of baseball.
- Chicago Cubs - Their rotation is probably the best rotation for this season, it features strong, dependable arms in Hippo Vaughn, Claude Hendrix, Dutch Ruether & Fred Toney. Plus the Phillies are going to be sick, watching Cy Williams playing in a Cubbies uniform for life.
- Cleveland Indians - Ray Chapman lives on! He will be part of a lineup that features consistent 20's stars in Joe Sewell, Elmer Smith, Steve O'Neill & Roger Peckinpaugh. The rotation features a formidable rotation of innings-eaters in Guy Morton, Sad Sam Jones & George Uhle.
- Detroit Tigers - The Tigers' top 5 hitters in the lineup features Donie Bush, Baby Doll Jacobson, Ty Cobb, Harry Heilmann & Bobby Veach. A pair of 'Black Sox' aces in Eddie Cicotte and Lefty Williams heads the rotation, to go with Hooks Dauss.
- New York Yankees - The Yankees don't have much, but Bob Meusel, while their rotation may be their best trait with Jack Quinn, Urban Shocker, Ray Fisher & Rip Collins.
- New York Giants - The Giants are a well-rounded team, with both tough hitting & pitching. The Giants' lineup features Frankie Frisch, George J Burns, Ross Youngs, High Pockets Kelly, Earl S Smith & Larry Doyle. The rotation is headed by a three-headed monster in Rube Marquard, Dick Rudolph & Waite Hoyt.
- Philadelphia Athletics - Or better yet... the spoiled Athletics. The Athletics are led by Shoeless Joe Jackson and Eddie Collins who are reunited in Philly, while the lineup features Jimmy Dykes, Stuffy McInnis & one of the best catchers at the time in Wally Schang (who was actually playing with the Red Sox at this point). Stan Coveleski, Herb Pennock & Bob Shawkey help form a strong rotation. They will get scary once Jimmie Foxx, Al Simmons, Lefty Grove, Mickey Cochrane and others come into the fold.
- Philadelphia Phillies - You know you are a bad team when your best hitter is shortstop Dave Bancroft... Well, at least they have Pete Alexander and Eppa Rixey on the mound.
- Pittsburgh Pirates - The Pirates have one of the best rotations for the 1920 MLB Season with Wilbur Cooper, Al Mamaux, Burleigh Grimes and Hal Carlson, while their lineup is led by Max Carey. The Bucs should be a N.L. contender.
- St. Louis Browns - George Sisler, Jack Tobin and Del Pratt provide the bats, while starting pitchers Jack Pheffer and Allan Sothoron may surprise. The team is not great, but they aren't exactly bad.
- St. Louis Cardinals - The rotation is anchored by Babe Adams, while the rotation should be dependable in Slim Sallee, Lee Meadows & Bill Sherdel. Rogers Hornsby has some support in the lineup in Cliff Heathcote, Austin McHenry, Possum Whitted & Ed Konetchy.
- Washington Senators - The lineup's top four is solid in Sam Rice, Bucky Harris, Joe Judge & Irish Meusel, while Walter 'The Big Train' Johnson anchors a bad pitching staff.
I hope you enjoyed, there will be plenty to come on this project.