George “Mooney” Gibson

Canadian Catcher for the Deadball Era Pirates

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About the Book

Canadian-born George “Mooney” Gibson (1880–1967) grew up playing baseball on the sandlots around London, Ontario, before going on to star with the Pittsburgh Pirates of the National League. In an era known for tough, defensive catchers, Gibson was an ironman and set records for endurance. He helped the Pirates defeat Ty Cobb and the Detroit Tigers to win their first World Series in 1909. He played with and against some of the biggest names in the game and counted Cobb, Honus Wagner and John McGraw as friends. He then held numerous coaching and managing roles in New York, Toronto, Pittsburgh, Washington and Chicago—the last Canadian to manage full-time in the Major Leagues.

About the Author(s)

Richard C. Armstrong, a lifelong baseball fan, has a particular interest in the Deadball Era and Canadians who have played the game. He is a member of the Society of American Baseball Research and lives in Guelph, Ontario.

Martin Healy, Jr., lives in Hamilton, Ontario. A diehard Toronto Blue Jays fan and Canadian baseball historian, he is a member of the Hanlan’s Point chapter of the Society for American Baseball Research.

Bibliographic Details

Richard C. Armstrong and Martin Healy, Jr.

Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 261
Bibliographic Info: 48 photos, appendices, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2020
pISBN: 978-1-4766-7969-3
eISBN: 978-1-4766-3858-4
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments viii
Preface 1
Introduction 7
1. Set the Tone 13
2. For He’s a Jolly Good Fellow 27
3. The Canadian Is a Comer 45
4. Here Comes Hackenschmidt 60
5. Nearly as Good as They Come 74
6. Iron Man 92
7. Make a Hard Job Easy 108
8. “Maple Leaf Forever” 125
9. You Won’t Make a Dime 140
10. Gibson to Lead Maple Leafs 158
11. Back in the Big Leagues 172
12. Yearning for the Glory Days 188
13. Forever a Baseball Man 208
Epilogue 220
Appendix 1: Major League Statistics 223
Appendix 2: Photo Gallery 225
Chapter Notes 229
Bibliography 241
Index 245

Book Reviews & Awards

“Gibson has been ‘consistently forgotten’ in baseball history circles. But thanks to Armstrong and Healy’s determination, excellent research skills and the comprehensive details they are able to share about Gibson’s life, this Canadian baseball legend is now more likely to be remembered. And for their efforts, Canadian baseball history buffs, like myself, should be very grateful.”—Cooperstown in Canada