Rube Marquard

The Life and Times of a Baseball Hall of Famer

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About the Book

Rube Marquard’s life was touched by success and scandal at nearly every turn. In 1906, the teenage pitcher defied his father and became a ballplayer. Two years later, the Giants purchased his contract for the then record $11,000. He soon became the best left-handed pitcher in the game; over the course of his career he won 201 games, threw a no-hitter and pitched in five World Series.
Off the field, Marquard was a master at marketing himself, recreating his story as it suited him. He wrote his own newspaper column, starred in movies, delighted crowds by catching balls thrown off high buildings, and even appeared as a female impersonator. But it was his affair and brief marriage with vaudeville sensation Blossom Seeley that caused the most uproar. Along with Seeley, Marquard became the toast of Broadway to the chagrin of his baseball fans. Throughout his life, the pitcher re-created his story as it suited him; his largely fanciful account of his career in Lawrence Ritter’s Glory of Their Times (1966) was largely responsible for his election to the Hall of Fame in 1971. This book gives for the first time the true story of one of the most colorful and controversial baseball players of the century.

About the Author(s)

Attorney and history teacher Larry D. Mansch is the legal director for the Montana Innocence Project and has written four previous books. He lives in Missoula, Montana.

Bibliographic Details

Larry D. Mansch
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 262
Bibliographic Info: photos, appendices, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 1998
pISBN: 978-0-7864-0497-1
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments     vii

Introduction     1

1 The Sandlot Capital of the World     5

2 The One Best Bet     18

3 “I Can Beat Anybody”     28

4 McGraw, Merkle, and Mayhem     40

5 The $11,000 Lemon     53

6 Beauty     70

7 Dangerous Men     84

8 A Popular Young Man     95

9 Climbing the Ladder of Fame     102

10 Scandal     120

11 The Best Left-Handed Pitcher in Baseball     129

12 “We Were Both Pretty Mad”     143

13 The Boys from Across the Big Bridge     161

14 “I Guess I’m the Fall Guy”     177

15 Baseball’s Most Picturesque Figure     188

16 Finally Cooperstown     204

Appendix A: Playing Record of Richard W. (Rube) Marquard     223

Appendix B: Rube Marquard’s 19 Straight Victories in 1912     225


Notes     227

Bibliography     241

Index     245

Book Reviews & Awards

“a good choice for sports shelves”—Library Journal; “Mansch…has thoroughly studied and ably presented this biography…capably recounts the life and times of Marquard”—Nine; “the great pitcher…comes to life in this well-researched history”—Legends Sports Memorabilia; “gives full credit to Marquard’s very respectable career…brings to light Marquard’s off-field skill of self-promotion”—Sports Collectors Digest.