Posted: Tuesday, January 14, 2003
Just three former Bucs players born on this date, so I'm going to stretch it a little to include a couple players who played for Pittsburgh teams from the American Association and the Union Association,2 short lived Major Leagues before the turn of the century. First the actual Pirates.
Ed Kinsella, born in 1882, played for the 1905 Bucs. A late season call up, he made his ML debut on September 16th of that year starting in a 6-0 loss to the Reds. On the season he went 0-1 2.65 in 3 games, 2 as a starter. He completed both games he started, with one of the games ending in a tie (2nd game of a doubleheader Vs. Brooklyn on Sept. 30th). The Pirates finished 96-57 that year, but still lost to the Giants by 9 games. Kinsella's only other appearance in the majors was for the 1910 St Louis Browns when he went 1-3 3.78
Jock Menefee who played 2 stints for the Pirates was born on this date in 1868. Jock made his ML debut for the 1892 Pirates, pitching just one game and giving up 5 runs in 4 innings. Menefee then went to the Louisville Colonels the next season before rejoining the Bucs near the end of the 1894 season. He would go 5-8 5.40 in 13 games, all starts and all complete games. The next season he would last just 2 games, mostly because he had no control. In 1 2/3 innings, he gave up just 2 hits but walked 7 batters finishing 0-1 16.20. Jock would play 9 years total, finishing 58-70 3.81 for 4 teams.
Jeff Banister might not have had much of a career, but if you check the Pirates all-time leaders in batting average he's at the top of the list. Born in 1965, Jeff a right handed hitter was called on to pinch hit during a game vs the Braves on July 23rd. He got a single, got stranded on base and that ended his ML career. He never appeared in the field during the Pirates 12-3 win that day, but he finished with a batting average of 1.000.
On to the other players. Mike Mansell played for the Pittsburgh Alleghenys of the American Association. The league started in 1882 and the Alleghenys were one of the charter teams of the league. They would finish in 4th place that year out of 6 teams at a 39-39 record. Mansell was the everyday left fielder for them that year and he hit .277 while leading the AA in both doubles and triples. In 1883 Mansell hit .257, but scored 90 runs in 96 games. It should be noted that RBI's werent officially a kept stat in the AA so records of them are sketchy. The Alleghenys finished in 7th place in 1883 with just a 31-67 record. The next season Mansell was again the regular LF, but struggled hitting just .140 in 27 games. He would go on to play for 2 other AA teams ending his career that season.Befor joining the AA he spent 2 seasons in the NL for the Syracuse Stars and the Cincinnati Reds (which isn't the same franchise as the Reds that exists today). Mansell was born in 1858.
Finally, Charlie Baker played for Pittsburgh of the Union Association in 1884. Born in 1856, Baker made his UA debut on August 1st of that year, but while the team was still in Chicago. Baker was a right fielder, but also played a few games in the infield that year, his only season in major league baseball. When the franchise moved to Pittsburgh mid August they changed the name from the Browns to the Stogies. Charlie batted .140 total in his 15 games, and he also made 9 errors. While in Pittsburgh, the team compiled a 7-11 record, but the team folded before the season ended. The St Paul Saints finished the schedule and they have the distinction of being the only major league team to never play a home games, playing all 9 remaining games on the road.