Major League Baseball
Major League Baseball is a professional baseball organization, the oldest of the four major professional sports leagues in the United States and Canada. A total of 30 teams play with 15 teams in each league; the NL and AL were formed as separate legal entities in 1901 respectively. After cooperating but remaining separate entities beginning in 1903, the leagues merged into a single organization led by the Commissioner of Baseball in 2000; the organization oversees Minor League Baseball, which comprises 256 teams affiliated with the Major League clubs. With the World Baseball Softball Confederation, MLB manages the international World Baseball Classic tournament. Baseball's first all-professional team was founded in Cincinnati in 1869; the first few decades of professional baseball were characterized by rivalries between leagues and by players who jumped from one team or league to another. The period before 1920 in baseball was known as the dead-ball era. Baseball survived a conspiracy to fix the 1919 World Series, which came to be known as the Black Sox Scandal.
The sport rose in popularity in the 1920s, survived potential downturns during the Great Depression and World War II. Shortly after the war, Jackie Robinson broke baseball's color barrier; the 1950s and 1960s were a time of expansion for the AL and NL new stadiums and artificial turf surfaces began to change the game in the 1970s and 1980s. Home runs dominated the game during the 1990s, media reports began to discuss the use of anabolic steroids among Major League players in the mid-2000s. In 2006, an investigation produced the Mitchell Report, which implicated many players in the use of performance-enhancing substances, including at least one player from each team. Today, MLB is composed of 1 in Canada. Teams play 162 games each season and five teams in each league advance to a four-round postseason tournament that culminates in the World Series, a best-of-seven championship series between the two league champions that dates to 1903. Baseball broadcasts are aired on television and the Internet throughout North America and in several other countries throughout the world.
MLB has the highest season attendance of any sports league in the world with more than 73 million spectators in 2015. MLB is governed by the Major League Baseball Constitution; this document has undergone several incarnations since its creation in 1876. Under the direction of the Commissioner of Baseball, MLB hires and maintains the sport's umpiring crews, negotiates marketing and television contracts. MLB maintains a unique, controlling relationship over the sport, including most aspects of Minor League Baseball; this is due in large part to the 1922 U. S. Supreme Court ruling in Federal Baseball Club v. National League, which held that baseball is not interstate commerce and therefore not subject to federal antitrust law; this ruling has been weakened only in subsequent years. The weakened ruling granted more stability to the owners of teams and has resulted in values increasing at double-digit rates. There were several challenges to MLB's primacy in the sport between the 1870s and the Federal League in 1916.
The chief executive of MLB is the commissioner Rob Manfred. The chief operating officer is Tony Petitti. There are five other executives: president, chief communications officer, chief legal officer, chief financial officer, chief baseball officer; the multimedia branch of MLB, based in Manhattan, is MLB Advanced Media. This branch oversees each of the 30 teams' websites, its charter states that MLB Advanced Media holds editorial independence from the league, but it is under the same ownership group and revenue-sharing plan. MLB Productions is a structured wing of the league, focusing on video and traditional broadcast media. MLB owns 67 percent of MLB Network, with the other 33 percent split between several cable operators and satellite provider DirecTV, it operates out of studios in Secaucus, New Jersey, has editorial independence from the league. In 1920, the weak National Commission, created to manage relationships between the two leagues, was replaced with the much more powerful Commissioner of Baseball, who had the power to make decisions for all of professional baseball unilaterally.
From 1901 to 1960, the American and National Leagues fielded eight teams apiece. In the 1960s, MLB expansion added eight teams, including the first non-U. S. Team. Two teams were added in the 1970s. From 1969 through 1993, each league consisted of an West Division. A third division, the Central Division, was formed in each league in 1994; until 1996, the two leagues met on the field only during the All-Star Game. Regular-season interleague play was introduced in 1997. In March 1995 two new franchises, the Arizona Diamondbacks and Tampa Bay Devil Rays, were awarded by MLB, to begin play in 1998; this addition brought the total number of franchises to 30. In early 1997, MLB decided to assign one new team to each league: Tampa Bay joined the AL and Arizona joined the NL; the original plan was to have an odd number of teams in each league, but in order for every team to be able to play daily, this would have required interleague play to be scheduled throughout the entire season. However, it
Run batted in
A run batted in, plural runs batted in, is a statistic in baseball and softball that credits a batter for making a play that allows a run to be scored. For example, if the batter bats a base hit another player on a higher base can head home to score a run, the batter gets credited with batting in that run. Before the 1920 Major League Baseball season, runs batted in were not an official baseball statistic; the RBI statistic was tabulated—unofficially—from 1907 through 1919 by baseball writer Ernie Lanigan, according to the Society for American Baseball Research. Common nicknames for an RBI include "ribby", "rib", "ribeye"; the plural of RBI is "RBIs", although some commentators use "RBI" as both singular and plural, as it can stand for "runs batted in". The 2018 edition of the Official Baseball Rules of Major League Baseball, Rule 9.04 Runs Batted In, reads A run batted in is a statistic credited to a batter whose action at bat causes one or more runs to score, as set forth in this Rule 9.04.
The official scorer shall credit the batter with a run batted in for every run that scores unaided by an error and as part of a play begun by the batter's safe hit, sacrifice bunt, sacrifice fly, infield out or fielder's choice, unless Rule 9.04 applies. The official scorer shall not credit a run batted in when the batter grounds into a force double play or a reverse-force double play; the official scorer's judgment must determine whether a run batted in shall be credited for a run that scores when a fielder holds the ball or throws to a wrong base. Ordinarily, if the runner keeps going, the official scorer should credit a run batted in; the perceived significance of the RBI is displayed by the fact that it is one of the three categories that compose the triple crown. In addition, career RBIs are cited in debates over who should be elected to the Hall of Fame. However, critics within the field of sabermetrics, argue that RBIs measure the quality of the lineup more than it does the player himself since an RBI can only be credited to a player if one or more batters preceding him in the batting order reached base.
This implies that better offensive teams—and therefore, the teams in which the most players get on base—tend to produce hitters with higher RBI totals than equivalent hitters on lesser-hitting teams. Totals are current through June 24, 2018. Active players are in bold. Hank Aaron – 2,297 Babe Ruth – 2,214 Cap Anson - 2,075 Alex Rodríguez – 2,055 Barry Bonds – 1,996 Lou Gehrig – 1,993 Albert Pujols – 1,981 Stan Musial – 1,951 Ty Cobb – 1,944 Jimmie Foxx – 1,922 Eddie Murray – 1,917 Willie Mays - 1,903 Hack Wilson – 191 Lou Gehrig – 185 Hank Greenberg – 183 Jimmie Foxx – 175 Lou Gehrig – 173 12 RBIsJim Bottomley Mark Whiten 11 RBIsWilbert Robinson Tony Lazzeri Phil Weintraub 10 RBIsBy 11 MLB players, most Mark Reynolds on July 7, 2018 Fernando Tatís – 8 Ed Cartwright – 7 Alex Rodriguez – 7 David Freese – 21 Scott Spiezio – 19 Sandy Alomar – 19 David Ortiz – 19 List of Major League Baseball runs batted in records
The Cleveland Indians are an American professional baseball team based in Cleveland, Ohio. The Indians compete in Major League Baseball as a member club of the American League Central division. Since 1994, they have played at Progressive Field; the team's spring training facility is at Goodyear Ballpark in Arizona. Since their establishment as a major league franchise in 1901, the Indians have won two World Series championships: in 1920 and 1948, along with 10 Central Division titles and six American League pennants; the Indians' current World Series championship drought is the longest active drought. The name "Indians" originated from a request by club owner Charles Somers to baseball writers to choose a new name to replace "Cleveland Naps" following the departure of Nap Lajoie after the 1914 season; the name referenced the nickname "Indians", applied to the Cleveland Spiders baseball club during the time when Louis Sockalexis, a Native American, played in Cleveland. Common nicknames for the Indians include the "Tribe" and the "Wahoos", the latter being a reference to their former logo, Chief Wahoo.
The team's mascot is named "Slider." The franchise originated in Grand Rapids, Michigan, in 1894 as the Grand Rapids Rustlers, a minor league team that competed in the Western League. The team relocated to Cleveland in 1900 and changed its name to the Cleveland Lake Shores; the Western League itself changed its name to the American League while continuing its minor league status. One of the American League's eight charter franchises, the major league incarnation of the club was founded in Cleveland in 1901. Called the Cleveland Bluebirds, the team played in League Park until moving permanently to Cleveland Stadium in 1946. At the end of the 2018 season, they had a regular season franchise record of 9,384–8,968. From August 24 to September 14, 2017, the Indians won 22 consecutive games, the longest winning streak in American League history. "In 1857 baseball games were a daily spectacle in Cleveland's Public Squares. City authorities tried to find an ordinance forbidding it, to the joy of the crowd, they were unsuccessful.
– Harold Seymour" 1865–1868 Forest Citys of Cleveland 1869–1872 Forest Citys of Cleveland From 1865 to 1868 Forest Citys was an amateur ball club. During the 1869 season, Cleveland was among several cities which established professional baseball teams following the success of the 1869 Cincinnati Red Stockings, the first professional team. In the newspapers before and after 1870, the team was called the Forest Citys, in the same generic way that the team from Chicago was sometimes called The Chicagos. In 1871 the Forest Citys joined the new National Association of Professional Base Ball Players, the first professional league. Two of the league's western clubs went out of business during the first season and the Chicago Fire left that city's White Stockings impoverished, unable to field a team again until 1874. Cleveland was thus the year the club folded. Cleveland played their full schedule to July 19 followed by two games versus Boston in mid-August and disbanded at the end of the season. 1879–1881 Cleveland Forest Citys 1882–1884 Cleveland BluesIn 1876, the National League supplanted the NA as the major professional league.
Cleveland were not among its charter members, but by 1879 the league was looking for new entries and the city gained an NL team. The Cleveland Forest Citys baseball team was re-created; the National League required distinct colors for the 1882 season, so the Cleveland Forest Citys became the Cleveland Blues. They had a mediocre record for six seasons and were ruined by a trade war with the Union Association in 1884, when its three best players jumped to the UA after being offered higher salaries. Cleveland Blues merged with the St. Louis Maroons UA team in 1885. 1887–1899 Cleveland Spiders — nickname "Blues"Cleveland went without major league baseball for two seasons until gaining a team in the American Association in 1887. After the AA's Allegheny club jumped to the NL Cleveland followed suit in 1889, as the AA began to crumble; the Cleveland ball club, named the Spiders became a power in the league. The next year the Spiders moved into League Park, which would serve as the home of Cleveland professional baseball for the next 55 years.
Led by native Ohioan Cy Young, the Spiders became a contender in the mid-1890s, when they played in the Temple Cup Series twice, winning it in 1895. The team began to fade after this success, was dealt a severe blow under the ownership of the Robison brothers Prior to the 1899 season, Frank Robison, the Spiders owner, bought the St. Louis Browns, thus owning two clubs at the same time; the Browns were renamed the "Perfectos", restocked with Cleveland talent. Just weeks before the season opener, most of the better Spiders players were transferred to St. Louis, including three future Hall of Famers: Cy Young, Jesse Burkett and Bobby Wallace; the roster maneuvers failed to create a powerhouse Perfectos team, as St. Louis finished fifth in both 1899 and 1900; the Spiders were left with a minor league lineup, began to lose games at a record pace. Drawing no fans at home, they ended up playing most of their season on the road, became known as "The Wanderers." The team ended the season in 12th place, 84 games out of first place, with an all-time worst record of 20-134.
Following the 1899 season, the National League disbanded four teams, including the Cleveland franchise. The disastrous 1899 season would be a step toward a new future for Cleveland fans
Vance Allen Wilson is a former professional baseball player and current bullpen coach for the Kansas City Royals. He played all or part of eight seasons in Major League Baseball as a catcher. Listed at 5' 11" tall and 215 pounds, he threw right-handed during his career. Wilson was a high school standout at Red Mountain High School in Arizona, continued his hometown success at Mesa Community College, where he was tagged as a Junior College All-American in 1994; the New York Mets selected Wilson in the 44th round of the 1993 Major League Baseball Draft, the catcher signed with the team the following summer after finishing his college career. After five arduous and injury riddled seasons in the Mets minor-league system, Wilson made his major-league debut on April 24, 1999, as a defensive replacement against the Chicago Cubs. Wilson's immediate tenure in New York was short-lived however, he began the 2000 and 2001 seasons with Triple-A Norfolk. Wilson began to play with the Mets in late 2001, assuming the role of back-up catcher behind perennial National League All-Star Mike Piazza.
Used as a pinch hitter and occasional spot-starter, Wilson's greatest value to the Mets was as a defensive replacement who could prevent runners from stealing bases. From 2001-04, Wilson ranked amongst the top three National League catchers for lowest opposing stolen base percentage; the reserve catcher appeared in a career-high 96 games for the Mets in 2003, notching career-highs of 8 home runs and 39 RBI. However, Wilson was hampered by injuries towards the end of the 2004 season, the Mets dealt him to the Detroit Tigers on January 5, 2005, for second baseman Anderson Hernández. In Detroit, Wilson once again found himself behind another perennial All-Star, this time backing up Iván Rodríguez. During the latter half of 2005, Wilson had a short starting stint, calling 22 games for the Tigers with Rodríguez on the disabled list and ineligible list, he started 2006 on the bench. During the summer, he signed a two-year extension with the Tigers. In 2007, he tore a muscle in his right forearm during the last week of spring training and was expected to be on the disabled list for the first half of the season.
He reinjured his arm in early June during a rehab assignment. It required Tommy John surgery. Minor leaguer Mike Rabelo replaced Wilson as the back-up catcher. Wilson was expected to be ready for the 2008 season. However, Wilson suffered yet another injury during his rehabilitation during the winter months, he suffered from Plantar fasciitis, an inflammation in the ligament that connects the heel bone to the toes. After Rodriguez was traded to the New York Yankees, utility player Brandon Inge took over as the team's starting catcher in Wilson's absence. Rabelo was traded to the Florida Marlins. Wilson filed for free agency on October 31, 2008. On January 7, 2009, Wilson signed a minor-league contract with the Kansas City Royals. On April 1, 2010, Wilson chose to retire. On October 29, 2010, Wilson was named the 13th manager of the Kane County Cougars, the Kansas City Royals' Class A Midwest League affiliate. In 2011, Wilson's rookie season as manager, Wilson piloted the Cougars to a 37-33 overall record and third-place finish in the division, which qualified the Cougars for participation in Midwest League's playoffs.
Before the 2012 season, Wilson was named manager of the Wilmington Blue Rocks of the Carolina League. On November 1, 2013 the Royals promoted Wilson to manager of the Northwest Arkansas Naturals. Wilson was named the Royals bullpen coach in November 2017. Career statistics and player information from MLB, or Baseball-Reference, or The Baseball Cube, or Baseball-Reference
In baseball, a stolen base occurs when a runner advances to a base to which he is not entitled and the official scorer rules that the advance should be credited to the action of the runner. The umpires determine whether the runner is safe or out at the next base, but the official scorer rules on the question of credit or blame for the advance under Rule 10. A stolen base most occurs when a base runner advances to the next base while the pitcher is pitching the ball to home plate. Successful base stealers have good baserunning instincts and timing. Ned Cuthbert, playing for the Philadelphia Keystones in either 1863 or 1865, was the first player to steal a base in a baseball game, although the term stolen base was not used until 1870. For a time in the 19th century, stolen bases were credited when a baserunner reached an extra base on a base hit from another player. For example, if a runner on first base reached third base on a single, it counted as a steal. In 1887, Hugh Nicol set a still-standing Major League record with 138 stolen bases, many of which would not have counted under modern rules.
Modern steal rules were implemented in 1898. Base stealing was popular in the game's early decades, with speedsters such as Ty Cobb and Clyde Milan stealing nearly 100 bases in a season, but the tactic fell into relative disuse after Babe Ruth introduced the era of the home run – in 1955, for example, no one in baseball stole more than 25 bases, Dom DiMaggio won the AL stolen base title in 1950 with just 15. However, in the late 1950s and early 1960s, base-stealing was brought back to prominence by Luis Aparicio and Maury Wills, who broke Cobb's modern single-season record by stealing 104 bases in 1962. Wills' record was broken in turn by Lou Brock in 1974, Rickey Henderson in 1982; the stolen base remained a popular tactic through the 1980s best exemplified by Vince Coleman and the St. Louis Cardinals, but began to decline again in the 1990s as the frequency of home runs reached record heights and the steal-friendly artificial turf ballparks began to disappear. Base stealing is an important characteristic of the "small ball" managing style.
Such managers emphasize "doing the little things" to advance runners and score runs relying on pitching and defense to keep games close. The Los Angeles Dodgers of the 1960s, led by pitcher Sandy Koufax and speedy shortstop Maury Wills, were a successful example of this style; the antithesis of this is reliance on power hitting, exemplified by the Baltimore Orioles of the 1970s, which aspired to score most of its runs via home runs. The "small ball" model is associated with the National League, while power hitting is associated with the American League. However, some successful recent American League teams, including the 2002 Anaheim Angels, the 2001 Seattle Mariners and the 2005 Chicago White Sox have excelled at "small ball." The Kansas City Royals have embodied this style leading the league in stolen bases but finishing last in home runs in 2013 and 2014. Successful teams combine both styles, with speedy runners complementing power hitters—such as the 2005 White Sox, who hit 200 home runs, fifth most in the majors, had 137 stolen bases, fourth.
Baseball's Rule 8 specifies the pitching procedure in detail. For example, in the Set Position, the pitcher must "com to a complete stop". A runner intending to "steal on the pitcher" breaks for the next base the moment the pitcher commits to pitch to home plate; the pitcher can not try to put the runner out. If the runner breaks too soon, the pitcher may throw to a base rather than pitch, the runner is picked off by being tagged out between the bases. Past this moment, any delay in the runner's break makes it more that the catcher, after receiving the pitch, will be able to throw the runner out at the destination base. Before the pitch, the runner takes a lead-off, walking several steps away from the base as a head start toward the next base. A runner who does not intend to steal takes a secondary lead of a few more steps, once the pitcher has committed to complete the pitch; the pitcher may, without limit, throw the ball to the runner's base. The runner must return to that risk being tagged out.
The more adept base stealers are proficient at reading the pickoff, meaning that they can detect certain tells in a pitcher's pre-pitch movements or mannerisms that indicate the pickoff attempt is or is not imminent. For example, one experienced base stealer noted that careless pitchers dig the toes on their back foot into the ground when they are about to pitch in order to get a better push off, but when they intend to turn and throw a pickoff, they do not. If a batted ball is caught on the fly, the runner must return to his original base. In this case, a runner trying to steal is more to be caught off his original base, resulting in a double play; this is a minor risk of a steal attempt. It is offset by the fact. In the hit-and-run play, coaches coordinate the actions of batter; the runner tries to steal and the batter swings at any pitch, if only to distract the catcher. If the batter makes contact, the runner has a greater chance of reaching the next base.
The Detroit Tigers are an American professional baseball team based in Detroit, Michigan. The Tigers compete in Major League Baseball as a member of the American League Central division. One of the AL's eight charter franchises, the club was founded in Detroit as a member of the minor league Western League in 1894 and is the only Western League team still in its original city, they are the oldest continuous one name, one city franchise in the AL. The Tigers have won four World Series championships, 11 AL pennants, four AL Central division championships; the Tigers won division titles in 1972, 1984, 1987 as a member of the AL East. The team plays its home games at Comerica Park in Downtown Detroit; the Tigers constructed Bennett Park at the corner of Michigan Avenue and Trumbull Avenue in Corktown and began playing there in 1896. In 1912, the team moved into Navin Field, built on the same location, it was renamed Briggs Stadium. It was renamed Tiger Stadium in 1961 and the Tigers played there until moving to Comerica Park in 2000.
The franchise was founded as a member of the reorganized Western League in 1894. They played at Boulevard Park, sometimes called League Park, it was located on East Lafayette called Champlain Street, between Helen and East Grand Boulevard, near Belle Isle. In 1895, owner George Vanderbeck decided to build Bennett Park at the corner of Michigan and Trumbull Avenues, which would remain their base of operations for the next 104 seasons; the first game at The Corner was an exhibition on April 13, 1896. The team, now called the "Tigers," beat a local semi-pro team, known as the Athletics, by a score of 30–3, they played their first Western League game at Bennett Park on April 28, 1896, defeating the Columbus Senators 17–2. At the end of the 1897 season, Rube Waddell was lent to the team to gain professional experience. After being fined, Waddell left Detroit to pitch in Canada; when the Western League renamed itself the American League for 1900, it was still a minor league, but the next year, it broke from the National Agreement and declared itself a major league competing with the National League for players and for fans in four contested cities.
For a while, there were rumors of the team relocating to Pittsburgh, but the two leagues made peace in 1903 when they signed a new National Agreement. The Tigers were established as a charter member of the now major league American League in 1901, they played their first game as a major league team at home against the Milwaukee Brewers on April 25, 1901, with an estimated 10,000 fans at Bennett Park. After entering the ninth inning behind 13–4, the team staged a dramatic comeback to win 14–13; the team finished third in the eight-team league. In 1905, the team acquired 18-year-old Ty Cobb, a fearless player with a mean streak, who came to be regarded as one of the greatest players of all time; the addition of Cobb to an talented team that included Sam Crawford, Hughie Jennings, Bill Donovan and George Mullin yielded results. Behind the hitting of outfielders Ty Cobb and Sam Crawford, the pitching of Bill Donovan and Ed Killian, the Tigers went 92–58 to win the AL pennant in 1907 by 1.5 games over the Philadelphia Athletics.
They moved on to their first World Series appearance against the Chicago Cubs. Game 1 ended in a rare 3–3 tie, called due to darkness after 12 innings; the Tigers scored only three runs in the succeeding four games, never scoring more than one run in a game, lost the Series, 4–0. The Tigers won the AL by just a half-game over the 90–64 Cleveland Naps with a 90–63 record. Cobb hit.324, while Sam Crawford hit.311 with 7 home runs, enough to lead the league in the "dead ball" era. The Cubs, would defeat the Tigers again in the 1908 World Series, this time in five games; this would be the Cubs' last World Championship until 2016. In 1909, Detroit posted a 98 -- 54 season. Ty Cobb won the batting triple crown in 1909, hitting.377 with 107 RBIs. He led the league with 76 stolen bases. George Mullin was the pitching hero, going 29–8 with a 2.22 ERA, while fellow pitcher Ed Willett went 21–10. Mullin's 11–0 start in 1909 was a Tiger record for 104 years being broken by Max Scherzer's 13–0 start in 2013, it was hoped that a new opponent in the 1909 Series, the Pittsburgh Pirates, would yield different results.
The Tigers performed better in the Fall Classic, taking Pittsburgh to seven games, but they were blown out 8–0 in the decisive game at Bennett Park. The Tigers dropped to third place in the American League in 1910 with an 86–68 record, they posted 89 wins in 1911 to finish second, but were still well behind a powerhouse Philadelphia Athletics team that won 101 games. The team sunk to a dismal sixth place in both 1913 seasons. A bright spot in 1912 was George Mullin pitching the franchise's first no-hitter in a 7–0 win over the St. Louis Browns on July 4, his 32nd birthday. Cobb went into the stands in a May 15, 1912, game to attack a fan, abusing him, was suspended; the Tigers protested the suspension by fielding a team of replacement players and some coaches, lost 24–2, to the Philadelphia Athletics. During this five-season stretch, Cobb posted batting averages of.383.420.409.390 and.368, winning the AL batting title every year. In 1915, the Tigers won a then-club record 100 games, but narrowly lost the AL pennant to the Boston Red Sox, who won 101 games.
The 1915 Tigers were led by an outfield consisting of Ty Cobb, Sam Crawford, Bobby Vea
In Major League Baseball, spring training is a series of practices and exhibition games preceding the start of the regular season. Spring training allows new players to try out for roster and position spots, gives established players practice time prior to competitive play. Spring training has always attracted fan attention, drawing crowds who travel to the warm climates of Arizona and Florida to enjoy the weather and watch their favorite teams play, spring training coincides with spring break for many US college students. Spring training starts in mid-February and continues until just before Opening Day of the regular season, which falls in the last week of March. In some years, teams not scheduled to play on Opening Day will play spring training games that day. Pitchers and catchers report to spring training first because pitchers benefit from a longer training period. A few days position players arrive and team practice begins. Exhibition games begin around the first of March. Spring training by major league teams in sites other than their regular season game sites first became popular in the 1890s and by 1910 was in wide use.
Hot Springs, has been called the original "birthplace" of spring training baseball. The location of Hot Springs and the concept of getting the players ready for the upcoming season was the brainchild of Chicago White Stockings team President Albert Spalding and Cap Anson. In 1886, the White Stockings traveled to Hot Springs to prepare for the upcoming season. After holding spring training at the Hot Springs Baseball Grounds, the White Stockings went on to have a successful season and other teams took notice. In subsequent years other teams joined Chicago and began holding spring training in Hot Springs, leading to the first spring training games; the Cleveland Spiders, Detroit Tigers, Pittsburgh Pirates, Cincinnati Reds, Brooklyn Dodgers, Boston Red Sox followed the White Stockings to Hot Springs. Whittington Field/Ban Johnson Park, Majestic Park, Fogel Field were all built in Hot Springs to host Major League teams. Famously, on St. Patrick's Day, 1918, a young successful pitcher named Babe Ruth of the Boston Red Sox was forced to play an emergency game at first base in a spring training game against Pittsburgh.
This game changed the course of baseball history, as it was the first time Ruth had played any position other than pitcher. Ruth responded by hitting two home runs that day in Hot Springs, the second was a 573-foot shot that landed across the street from Whittington Park in a pond of the Arkansas Alligator Farm and Petting Zoo; the Red Sox took notice and soon Ruth was playing the field more often. Over 130 Major League Baseball Hall of Famers, including such names as Ruth, Cy Young, Cap Anson, Honus Wagner, Ty Cobb, Tris Speaker, Walter Johnson, Rogers Hornsby, Mel Ott, Dizzy Dean, Jimmie Foxx, Stan Musial all trained in Hot Springs Spring Training; the First Boys of Spring is a 2015 documentary about Hot Springs Spring Training. The film was narrated by area native, actor Billy Bob Thornton, produced by filmmaker Larry Foley; the documentary began airing nationally on the MLB Network in February 2016. Early training sites include the St. Louis Cardinals in Tulsa, Oklahoma; the Detroit Tigers are credited with being the first team to conduct spring training camp in Arizona.
They trained in Phoenix at Riverside Park at Central Avenue and the Salt River in 1929. The Philadelphia Phillies were the first of the current major-league teams to train in Florida, when they spent two weeks in Jacksonville, Florida in 1889. Spring training in Florida began in earnest in 1913, when the Chicago Cubs trained in Tampa and the Cleveland Indians in Pensacola. One year two other teams moved to Florida for spring training, the real start of the Grapefruit League. Except for a couple of years during World War II, when travel restrictions prevented teams training south of the Potomac and Ohio rivers, Florida hosted more than half of the spring training teams through 2009. Since 2010, major league teams have been divided between Arizona and Florida during spring training, with 15 teams in Florida and 15 teams in Arizona. All but six of the major league teams have gone to spring training in Florida at one time or another. Many of the most famous players in baseball history have called Florida home for 4–6 weeks every spring.
According to the autobiography of former Cleveland Indians owner Bill Veeck, the avoidance of racism was one reason the Cactus League was established. In 1947, Veeck was the owner of the minor league Milwaukee Brewers and the team trained in Ocala, Florida. Veeck inadvertently sat in the Black section of the segregated stands and engaged in conversation with a couple of fans. According to Veeck's book, the local law enforcement told Veeck he could not sit in that section, called the Ocala mayor when Veeck argued back; the mayor backed down when Veeck threatened to take his team elsewhere for spring training and promised to let the country know why. Veeck sold the Brewers in 1945 and temporarily retired to a ranch in Tucson, but purchased the Cleveland Indians in 1946. Intending to introduce African-American players, Veeck decided to buck tradition and train the Indians in Tucson and convinced the New York Giants to give Phoenix a try, thus the