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Home Run Baker
#?? | Third baseman | Oakland Athletics/Philadelphia Athletics

     Baker also played for the New York Yankees.  Though his Hall of Fame picture and plaque do not identify a team, I have assigned him to the Athletics, where he had most of his success.

John Franklin Baker: "Home Run"

     Part of the "$100,000 infield" of the four-time pennant-winning Philadelphia A's, along with Stuffy McInnis, Jack Barry and Eddie Collins, he was good fielder who led the league in fielding average twice.


     Playing in the dead ball era, Baker never hit more than 12 home runs in a season but still earned the nickname "Home Run"; actually the nickname is probably due to the two game-winning home runs he hit in the 1911 World Series, in which he hit .375, drove in 5 of his team's 15 runs in 6 games, and slugged his team to victory.  In the 1910 World Series, he had hit .409 and he and Collins led the team to a 4-1 victory over the Cubs; in 1913 the Athletics would return to the Series, beating the Giants in 5, with Baker and Collins leading the way again (Baker hit .450, Collins .421).  The A's had one more appearance in the Baker-Collins years, in 1914, but were swept by the Boston Braves - Bill James and Dick Rudolph pitched 29 innings combined and allowed just one earned run to shut down the mighty A's.


     Baker led the league in round-trippers 4 times and in RBI 3 times - relative to his era, he was an effective hitter, finishing in the top five in slugging percentage for four straight years between 1911 and 1914.


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