Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Chicago Cubs, Major Leauge's First Dynasty, A Sox Fans Christmas Gift To Cub Fans

Well they weren't called the Cubs and they didn't play at Wrigley field but the team that went on to become the Cubs were major league baseball's first dynasty. I'm a tried and true Chicago White Sox fan and would normally be the last person to be aware of this fact let alone be talking about it. But in my recent research into the history of the Taylor street area on Chicago's near west side I came across a couple of sites that used to house Chicago's national League team. Then I read about some of the heights achieved by this team and thought I would share some of this story. Let's just say it's a Christmas present to all my Cub fan friends.

The Chicago White Stockings were one of the eight original National League teams that began play in 1876.They would be league champs that year rolling up a record of 52-14. In the first ten years they would lead the league five times. Then in the first decade of the twentieth century it would set records that have never been equaled. During this time their name would change to the Colts then the Orphans It wasn't until 1901 that they became the Cubs. They would also change addresses four times this is video takes a look at two different locations not even a mile apart.

Their first west side home was near Halsted and Congress on Chicago's near west side from 1885 to 1891. They were led by player / manager Cap Anson and players like Billy Sunday and Marty Sullivan. They were National League champs the first two years at the new park. Including 1885 where they were winners of an early version of the World Series.

The place had it's problems it only held 10,000 people and the park was shaped like a bathtub with the foul lines only 215'. It also shared the space with a bicycle racing track that encircled the already crowded field. One additional note on September 21 1888 three White Stockings players were arrested flirting with Mrs. Seth Blood, the proprietor of a "house" just beyond the wall at old West Side Park. What kind of "house" it was was never clarified but in Chicago at that time vice was king.

Then they have no real home for a couple of years, earning the name orphans, before settling back to the west side in 1893 near Ashland and Congress not far from the old park. Here is where they would develop some exciting new players including the famed combo of Tinkers, Chance & Evans. The Chicago Daily News decides to nickname this young team the Cubs. Than name sticks and in 1903 it becomes official.

By the middle of the decade they were a dynasty at one point winning 538 games out of a possible 765 games. No team has ever done something like that. They were National League champs in 1906,07,08 & 1910 and World Series Champs in 07' and '08. In 1906 they won a record 116 games but would end up being beaten by by crosstown rivals the Chicago White Sox. Known as the hit less wonders.The Cubs would continue to play here without much success until 1915 when they moved. Perhaps they felt they were to close to their upstart rivals the White Sox who were playing not far away.

One more little nugget about the old ball park is that it is where the term “out of left field” came from. As in; the idea was from out of left field meaning it's not a normal or “traditional” idea. The saying began here because beyond the left field wall was an insane asylum and people in the park could hear the moans and babbling of the patients.

They ended up on the north side at Weegham park which became Wrigley field in 1925. And although there have been some World Series games played here no World Series winning team have called Wrigley home.


 

Research resources;

This is presented by ChiTownView where we offer little slices of Chicago's past, present and future. http://www.youtube.com/user/ChiTownView

The video was produced by MindsiMedia check out our web portal. http://www.mindsimedia.info

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