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Tris Speaker Photo   Tris Speaker
"The Babe was a great ballplayer, sure, but Cobb was even greater. Babe could knock your brains out, but Cobb would drive you crazy"

Full Name: Tristram E Speaker
Nicknames: The Grey Eagle
Spoke
 
Physique: 6' 0", 127 lbs
Left-Handed Hitter
 
Born: Apr 4, 1888, Hubbard, TX
Died: Dec 8, 1958  (70 years old)
 
Ranking: #5 All-time ( #4    All    #6 )
.345
career average

3,514 hits

Red Sox and Indians
1909 - 1927

Hall of Fame: 1937



Generally regarded as the best defensive center fielder to ever play the game, Tris Speaker was no slouch at the plate, batting .344 in 22 seasons in the American League. Speaker was involved in one of the most controversial trades of his time and later led the Cleveland Indians to their first World Series title, while serving as player/manager. He was the most prolific doubles hitter in history, and also holds major league marks for putouts and assists by an outfielder. He was a key member of the first two Boston Red Sox World Championship teams, in 1912 and 1915. On the Sox he formed one of the greatest outfields in baseball history with teammates Duffy Lewis and Harry Hooper.

The likable Speaker was intense on the diamond but well thought of by his teammates and opponents. Interestingly, he was a good friend with Ty Cobb, the most vilified man in baseball. The two shared a love for hunting and were thrown together in the 1926-1927 gambling scandal that threatened to tarnish their image. They were also teammates on the 1928 Philadelphia A's. One can assume they also loved to talk hitting. Cobb considered Speaker the greatest player that he ever played against. For a time, Speaker shared Cobb's dislike for Babe Ruth, commenting in 1921 that "Ruth made a grave mistake when he gave up pitching. Working once a week, he might have lasted a long time and become a great star."


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