- 1B, 3B, SS, OF, 2B
- April 2, 1869
- 5' 8"
- 165 lbs
- Major League Debut:
- 6-01-1891 with LS2
- Hall of Fame:
Hughey Jennings may be one of the most misunderstood Hall of Fame members. He was elected as a shortstop, but many books and historians continue to claim he was elected because of his managerial career with the Detroit Tigers. Certainly he could have been - he led the Bengals to three straight pennants from 1907 to 1909, and he won 1,131 games in his 16-year career as a manager. But it was his hustling and sometimes vicious style of play with the famous Baltimore Orioles of the 1890s that earned Jennings his place in Cooperstown. In 1,285 games he tallied 1,527 hits and scored nearly 1,000 runs, and he once hit .401 for the Orioles. When he was 40-years old he was 2-for-4 as a pinch-hitter for his 1909 Tigers and he played his final game at the age of 49.
The 1890s Orioles
In 1892 Ned Hanlon took over the reigns of the Baltimore Orioles, in their first season in the National League after a decade of mediocrity in the American Association. The Orioles lost 101 games that year and finished dead-last in the 12-team league. Within two years Baltimore was the premier team in the league, thanks in large part to Hanlon's genius. Jennings and others formed a Hall of Fame lineup which steamrolled opponents for three seasons. The Orioles boasted six Hall of Famers in their everyday lineup: Wilbert Robinson behind the plate, Dan Brouthers at first, John McGraw at third, Jennings at shortstop, Joe Kelley in center field and Wee Willie Keeler in right field. They won the NL pennant in 1894, 1895 and 1896. In 1897 and 1898 they finished a close second. In 1899, when Hanlon jumped to the Brooklyn team, Jennings, Kelley and Keller went with him and the quartet won two more pennants, in 1899 and 1900.
Best Season: 1896
Jennings hit .401, with a .476 OBP, 209 hits, 125 runs scored in 130 games, 121 RBI and 70 steals. No telling what he may have hit had he not been hit by 51 pitches.
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