The American Association faced yet another challenge to its longevity with the creation of the Players League, another new major league that went after players in the AA with more
attractive contracts. The ownership of the league were the best players from the National
League, who split to form a more perfect baseball league.
For the Browns, the Players League represented the end of an era, as player/manager Charlie Comiskey left the team to join the Chicago franchise of the upstart organization after eight seasons and four AA titles with the Browns. So did Tip O'Neill, the slugging outfielder who had batted .435, .335 and .335 in his previous three seasons with the Browns, and Silver King, who won 112 games in his three seasons with St. Louis.
There was an agreement between the American Association and the National League that they would not compete against each other in American cities, so the American Association
expanded in unique communities to make up for the teams (Brooklyn, Cincinnati and
Cleveland) that were lost to the National League after the 1889 season. The Browns in 1890
played the Brooklyn Gladiators, the Rochester Broncos, the Syracuse Stars, and the Toledo
Maumees as well as remaining AA teams in Baltimore, Louisville, Philadelphia and Columbus.
Tommy McCarthy still patrolled right field for the Browns in 1890 and batted .350 for the season with 83 stolen bases.
The Browns were sliding on the field, although they maintained a winning record of 78-58. It
was the first time since 1885 the Browns did not win at least 90 games.By Kent McDill
- Brooklyn Gladiators, Charlie Comiskey, Players League, Rochester Broncos, Silver King, Syracuse Stars, Tip O'Neill, Toledo Maumees, Tommy McCarthy