A Dozen Things You Should Know About Kid Nichols

Kid Nichols

1. He was born Charles Augustus Nichols in Madison, Wisconsin in 1869.

2. After a few years in the minors, he hit the Major Leagues with Boston in 1890 at age 21. His youth earned him his nickname, his 27 wins earned him a permanent spot on the team.

3. In 1893, baseball went to the modern pitching distance and added the mound. He went from 35 wins to 34, his ERA jumped a  full run, his strikeouts went down, and he led the National League in WHIP for the first time. Obviously he, adjusted reasonably well (as did Cy Young).

4. Between 1891 and 1898 inclusive he averaged 31 wins a season, falling below 30 only once with 26 in 1895.

5. He remained with Boston through 1901. During his 12 years with the Beaneaters the team won five pennants, came in second once, and third another time.

6. In the 1892 split season, Boston won the first half with a .702 winning percentage, then beat Cleveland (and Cy Young) in the postseason playoff five games to none, Nichols getting two wins). In what passed for postseason play in the 1890s (split season and Temple Cup), Nichols was involved in the split season and the 1897 Temple Cup. He won one game in 1897.

7. The advent of the American League decimated the Boston team. Nichols stayed around for 1901, then spent 1902 and 1903 in the minors, pitching well and coaching a little.

8. In 1904 the Cardinals brought him back to the Majors. He went 21-13 with an ERA of 2.02 (ERA+ of 134).

9. He began 1905 with St. Louis, was traded to Philadelphia during the season, and finished his career with the Phillies in 1906.

10. His career record is in some dispute. His win total varies from 369 to 360 depending on the source. Baseball Reference settled on 361, but the Hall of Fame chose 360,  either of which is seventh ever.

11. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1949 by the Veteran’s Committee. He never got more than 2.6 % of the vote by the writers (which should be proof that the writers aren’t as knowledgable about baseball as they claim).

12. He died in Kansas City, Missouri on 11 April 1953 and is buried there.


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2 Responses to “A Dozen Things You Should Know About Kid Nichols”

  1. William Miller Says:

    I’ve always thought the entire structure of the BBWA needs to be reconsidered. To me, the whole HOF inducting voting process leaves a lot to be desired, to put it mildly.
    Nice post, Bill

    • verdun2 Says:

      Glad you liked it. Agree with you on the HoF voting. I’ve discovered that the writers sometimes seem to know less about the game than people like you and me.

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