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Chief Johnson Newsbeat

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 4-24-2014

The lesser-known subplot of Wrigley Field’s first game, in the Toledo News-Bee, April 24, 1914:

Court Officers Yank Pitcher Johnson, Late of Reds, From Chicago Federal League Game

Chief Johnson, Indian twirler who jumped from the Cincinnati Reds to the Kansas City Federals, expressed confidence on Friday that the court order restraining him from playing with the Packers will be dismissed…
...
Papers were served on Johnson after he had pitched two innings at the Chifed opener. At the same time President Madison of the Kansas City club was enjoined from tampering with Cincinnati players now at the Cub park.

Not really terribly well done by the KC Feds, allowing someone to get close enough to Johnson during a game to serve him a court order.

Anyway, Johnson was in legal limbo for months and didn’t play again until July 25, when he threw a complete game for the Packers. When the Federal League died after the 1915 season, so did the Chief’s major league career.

Shouldn’t really be much of a surprise that a decent but unspectacular pitcher who fought organized baseball in court didn’t have much of a career afterwards.


 

 

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