Tom Loftus, 1902-1903
Record as Senators manager: 104-169, .381 PCT
1902 61-75, .449 Pct, 6th Place, 22 GB
1903 43-94, .314 Pct, 8th Place, 47.5 GB
Tom Loftus was Ban Johnson’s choice to replace Jimmy Manning at the helm of the Nationals. Loftus, in accepting the Washington managerial job, became the only man to manage in four different major leagues (Union Association, American Association, National League and American League).
Inheriting a club that included Manning recruits Ed Delahanty, pitchers Al Orth and Happy Townsend and 3B Harry Wolverton, Loftus led the Nats to a lackluster 6th place finish in 1902. Delahanty did not disappoint and paced the circuit with a .376 batting average. Orth, the “Curveless Wonder”, won 19, with Case Patten racking up 17. Despite the second division finish, team president Fred Postal awarded Loftus with a 25 percent share of the franchise.
The roof caved in on Loftus and Postal in 1903. Not only did this edition of the Senators become the first Washington team to finish in the basement, but the season was darkened by the mysterious death of Delahanty in mid-season. A month following Delahanty’s death, Postal, tired of the team’s internal bickering and Loftus’ pestering for more money to get players, wanted out. Johnson, in an unbridled conflict of interest, temporarily took control of the Nats for $15,000. One of Johnson’s first acts was to announce that Loftus would not return for the 1904 season.
Johnson sold the Senators in March of 1904 to a consortium led by a baseball writer turned promoter, William Dwyer, Thomas C. Noyes, whose family published the Washington Evening Star and attorney Wilton Lambert, who would become the new team president. Even though Johnson had announced Loftus would not return the previous August, the AL president did not officially terminate Loftus. So, with rumors that the Nats were about to install Patsy Donovan as manager once he had secured his release from the Cardinals, Loftus claimed that he was still the manager and Donovan would only be a player if he were acquired. One week before opening day, Dwyer and Noyes finally issued Loftus the pink slip.
Marquette Joseph Christman B Oct. 21, 1913 D Oct. 9, 1976
Utility infielder Mark Christman would make his major league debut with the Detroit Tigers in April of 1938 as a 24 year old rookie. Playing in 95 games his first season, Christman would hit .248 with 6 doubles, 4 triples, 1 home run and 44 RBI’s.
Starting the 1939 season in Detroit, Christman would make it into 6 games in a Tigers uniform before being traded in mid-May to the St. Louis Browns. Christman would play in 79 games for the Browns, hitting .216. He wouldn’t return to the majors until 1943, when, back with the Browns, he’d hit a respectable .271 in 98 games. In 1944, he’d play in 148 games and hit an identical .271.
Christman would make it into all 6 games of the 1944 World Series but would go a disappointing 2 for 22 at bat as the Browns were defeated by the Cardinals in 6 games.
Christman would play 2 more years for the Browns before being purchased by the Washington Senators at the start of the 1947 season. Playing in Washington from 1947 through 1949, Christman would hit .222 in 110 games in 1947. 1948 would see him in 120 games, raising his BA to .259.
1949 would be Christman’s last major league season as he’d only appear in 49 games, hitting .214, his last major league appearance coming in late September.
Mark Christman career record
Robert Alexander Pritchard B Oct. 21, 1917 D Sep. 25, 1991
Single Season Senator Bob Pritchard spent just over 2 months on the roster of the 1939 Senators. Playing 1st base, Pritchard would go 20 for 85 at bat with 5 doubles, 8 runs scored and 8 RBI’s.
Bob Prichard career record