Jack Taylor

Jack Taylor

P, 1B, 2B, 3B, OF
January 14, 1874
5' 10"
170 lbs
Major League Debut:
9-25-1898 with CHN

He made his major league debut with the Chicago Cubs on September 25, 1898. His best years as a pitcher were 1900 (2.55 earned run average), 1902 (1.33 ERA with 7 shutouts; #1 in the league), 1903 (2.45 ERA), and 1906 (1.99 ERA). His career average was 2.66 ERA.

In the fall of 1903, Cubs' owner James A. Hart and White Sox owner Charles Comiskey agreed to play a 15-game series between the two teams in the Windy City. Despite the animosity between the established Cubs and the upstart Sox, the series debuted on October 1, with Jack Taylor on the mound for the Cubs. The National League team pounded thier crosstown rivals, 11-0, at West Side Grounds. Despite his success in that first game, Taylor was shelled in his next three starts against the White Sox, losing 10-2, 9-3, and 4-2. When the players' contracts expired on the 15th, the series was halted with each team having earned seven victories. Rumors swirled about the series, with Hart accusing Taylor of having "laid down" against the Sox in his last three starts. In December, Taylor was traded to the Cardinals for catcher Jack O'Neill and pitcher Mordecai "Three-Finger" Brown. he was then traded back to Chicago in July 1906 (in return for Fred Beebe and Pete Noonan).

In 1904, Taylor set a major league record by pitching 39 consecutive complete games. Taylor achieved one of the most remarkable pitching records of the 20th century: For five years, from June 20, 1901 to August 9, 1906, he was never once relieved in a game. During the span he started and completed 187 games, including one 19-inning and one 18-inning affair, and finished 15 in relief of others. On one occasion he pitched both ends of a doubleheader. Thus Taylor appeared in 202 consecutive games without being relieved himself.

Thus he was part of the wonder team of the 1906 Cubs; that year the ERA for the entire pitching staff was 1.76. He also contributed to the World Series-winning season in 1907.

Taylor died in Columbus, Ohio at the age of 64.

1906 World Series, 1907 World Series, Chicago Cubs, Jack Taylor, St. Louis Cardinals, West Side Grounds
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