The best batting year in STL history was not Cardinal. Meet Oscar Charleston.

What was the biggest offensive season in St. Louis’ professional baseball history?

What a fun question…and what a difficult question.

Was it Mark McGuire‘s 70 home run season? Stan Musial’s 1946? Joe Medwick’s triple crown campaign? Is Albert Pujols one of his MVP years?Stan Musial’s 1948?Is he really a 1920s Rogers season of his Hornsby? George Sisler1920, when the St. Louis Browns star batted .407 with 122 RBIs?

no the answer is oscar charlestonof 1921.

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The Negro League slugger enshrined in Cooperstown played just one season in St. Louis.

play in center field St. Louis Giants (they became the St. Louis Stars the following year), Charleston won the Triple Crown with a . 433 batting average, 15 home runs, and 91 RBIs. He also earned the leading “thrash stats triple crown” in batting average, on-base percentage (. 512), and slugging percentage (. 736), and achieved a league-best 1.248 his OPS.

The best OPS in Cardinals history is Hornsby’s 1.245 in 1925.

oscar charleston 2

Oscar Charleston won the Negro League Triple Crown in 1921 in St. Louis.

Photo credit: Black League Baseball Museum

In fact, only two other St. Louis pro players have broken the 1.2 OPS level. Maguire’s 1.222 in 1998 and Hornsby’s 1.203 in 1924.

Musial’s highest OPS ever? In 1948 it was 1.152.

The best OPS in Browns history was Sisler’s 1.082 in 1920.

“In my opinion, Oscar Charleston and Wilbur “Brett” Logan He was the first of the two superstars of the newly formed Negro League in 1920. Black League Baseball Museum in Kansas City. “There were other stars, but these two were superstars. They were just different. About Charleston, you’d say he was the best baseball player he’d ever seen.

“If you asked him who was the greatest major leaguer, he would say: Willie MaysMany could agree that Willie Mays could beat you in every way possible. buck o’neal Believed Oscar Charleston to be the greatest baseball player I’ve ever seen. He was a perfect five he was a tool man. ”

oscar charleston

Oscar Charleston, a longtime player and manager of baseball’s Black League, was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame on February 10, 1976. This is an undated photo.

Associated Press

Now, depending on records, it’s fair to point out that the 1921 St. Louis Giants of the Negro League played only 75-79 games (Per baseball, Charleston played in 77 games). This equated to about half the number of games in his season in Major League Baseball at the time. But who’s to say he wasn’t better in level and competition in the Negro leagues than in the MLB, and if we’re talking about comparisons, his 1921 baseball achievements versus, say, his 2021 baseball performances? Achievements are not the same. Today’s players are bigger, stronger, and their performance is enhanced by technology.

But we are having fun here. So let’s take a moment to thank Charleston for its tremendous dominance and huge numbers in 1921.

He finished the season with 250 OPS+. If you’re unfamiliar with this stat, a rough adjustment has been made to normalize the numbers across leagues. 100 OPS+ is average. 110 OPS+ means that player was 10% better than the league average.Last year, the Cardinals Paul Goldschmidt Won MVP with 179 OPS+.Highest in Cardinals history Rogers Hornsby222 of 1924. Charleston’s 1921 was 250.

Yes, Charleston played half the number of games. But Negro, given his league season was his 154 games, given his OPS+ from 78 to his 154 games wasn’t astonishing, considering how much he would have struggled. Try it.

Charleston (24 years old in 1921) was the best defensive player in the league.he’s basically negro league Mike Trout (Or, really, Trout is MLB’s Oscar Charleston). Kendrick said Charleston had elite speed and instincts and deliberately played shallow center field. Kendrick said O’Neal used to say this line often: If the 1954 World Series had Charleston at the center and not Mays, Charleston wouldn’t have had to make his famous basket catch because Because he was already standing and waiting for the ball.

Like Trout, Charleston was the star of a team that didn’t win. He was sold prior to his 1921 to the St. Louis Giants, who finished third in the Negroes in his National League.Around Saber (Society for American Baseball Research), St. Louis faced financial troubles in the offseason and forced Charleston to The ABCs of Indianapolis, his hometown team. Charleston played 18 of his seasons as a professional, with an OPS of 1.064 for him and a .365 batting average.

Still, St. Louis continued to make Negro league history.St. Louis Stars featuring bright likes cool papabelWillie Wells, Mule Suttleswon three pennants.

“The history of black baseball in St. Louis is very important,” said Kendrick. “A lot of Hall of Famers call St. Louis home, but a lot of baseball fans don’t know that. It’s always been a great baseball town, and the Negro leagues there deserve the credit they deserve for their impact on baseball history in St. Louis. I don’t know if they are…

“The Negro League is an important part of baseball and American history. Unfortunately, it was essentially omitted from the pages of American history books. Given the fact that this metropolitan city of St. Louis has a rich baseball history, many people do not know about the history of black baseball. I think it will be very interesting…and as baseball fans, we should celebrate the legacy of the game.”

In today’s 10am “Ten Hochman” video, Siteman Cancer Center Studios’ Ben Hochman talks about the Cardinals’ frustrating starters this season. Also, happy birthday to John Oates of Hall and Oates!And as usual, Hochman randomly picks a card of his St. Louis card from his hat!”Ten Hochman” is window nation!

Benjamin Hochman

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