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1/26/08 This Day in Washington Baseball History...(Leftover Edition)

The Continuing Attempt To Educate A Montreal Fan About DC Baseball History...(Leftover Edition)

     December 26, 1889. Amherst, Mass. John Parker Henry is born. Twenty years later, 6'0'' 180 lb, John "Bull" Henry makes his debut with the Washington Senators, sharing the catching duties with Gabby Street, Eddie Ainsmith, Jack Hardy and Heinie Beckendorf for the 1910 Senators, who are led by a then-twenty-two year old Walter "Big Train" Johnson's (25-17) record and 1.36 ERA, with 38 of his 45 starts, complete games.

     In 29 games and 87 at bats in the 1910 season, John Henry hit .149, with 1 double, 1 triple, and 5 RBI's. In 1911, Henry appeared in 85 games and posted a .203 AVG with 5 doubles and 21 RBI's as the backup to Gabby Street, but after the 1911 season, Street left for New York after four years in DC, joining the NY Highlanders and leaving Henry, Eddie Ainsmith and Rip Williams behind the plate for the 1912 Washington Senators.

     From 1912-1916, John Henry did the bulk of the catching for the Senators' Hall of Fame pitcher Walter Johnson, who put up seasons of...

1912- (33-12), 34 CG,1.39 ERA.
1913- (36-7), 29 CG, 1.14 ERA.
1914- (28-18), 33 CG, 1.72 ERA.
1915- (27-13), 35 CG, 1.55 ERA.
1916- (25-20), 36 CG, 1.90 ERA.

     John Henry's best season in the Majors was the 1916 season, during which he hit .249 with 12 doubles, 3 triples, and 46 RBI's in 117 games, but by 1917 Eddie Ainsmith had supplanted Henry in the starter's role, and after one season as Ainsmith's backup, Henry's contract was purchased by the Boston Braves, for whom he played one season, batting .206 with 2 doubles and 5 RBI's before retiring at the age of twenty-eight after the 1918 campaign.  

     In nine Major League seasons, (1910-1918), John Henry combined to hit .207 with 54 doubles, 15 triples, 2 HR's and 171 RBI's. The Baseball Library's Jack Kavanagh remembers John Henry in the the sites' biography at baseballlibrary.com, where Mr. Kavanagh writes:

          "(John Henry)...was Walter Johnson's catcher during the
          pitcher's peak years. A smart baseball man, this Amherst
          alumnus subsequently coached at Cornell before becoming
          a minor league umpire."

     John Henry coached at Cornell until June 23, 1920 according to this New York Times article from that date...

http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive-free/pdf?_r=1&res=9D0CE6D6133AE03ABC4B51DFB066838B639EDE&am p;oref=slogin

     Twenty one years later, John Henry died on November 24, 1941 in Fort Huachuca, Arizona.

*John Henry Links*

Armchairgm.com's profile of John Park Henry:

http://www.armchairgm.com/John_Park_Henry  

John Henry's career stats at thebaseballcube.com:

http://thebaseballcube.com/players/H/John-Henry.shtml

John Henry's career stats at baseball-reference.com:

http://www.baseball-reference.com/h/henryjo02.shtml

Walter Johnson's career stats at baseballreference.com:

http://www.baseball-reference.com/j/johnswa01.shtml

The Baseball Library's Jack Kavanagh's profile of John Henry at thebaseballlibrary.com:

http://www.baseballlibrary.com/ballplayers/player.php?name=John_Henry_1889