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Encyclopedia > Louisville Grays

The Louisville Grays were a 19th century baseball team and charter member of the National League, based in Louisville, Kentucky. They existed for 2 years from 1876 to 1877 and compiled a record of 65 - 61.

The Grays were involved in major league baseball's first gambling scandal. The team was in first place in August of 1877, and suddenly lost 7 games against the Boston Red Stockings and Hartford Dark Blues. Boston ended up winning the pennant; the Grays took 2nd place.

Team president Charles E. Chase received two anonymous telegrams. One noted that gamblers were favoring the less talented Hartford team in an upcoming series. The 2nd predicted Louisville would throw the next game versus Hartford on August 21, 1877. The Grays committed a number of suspicious errors and lost that game 7-0. League president William Hulbert investigated, and ordered players to authorize Western Union to release all telegrams sent or received during the 1877 season. All players complied except shortstop Bill Craver, the team's captain.

The telegrams indicated pitcher Jim Devlin, center fielder George Hall, and utility player Al Nichols intentionally lost games in exchange for money. No direct evidence was found implicating Craver. All four were banned from baseball for life, Craver for refusing to comply with the investigation.

The Grays disbanded after the 1877 season.

  Results from FactBites:
History of Louisville, Kentucky: Information from Answers.com (4258 words)
By 1800, the population of Louisville was 359, to Lexington's 1,759.
Louisville had one of the largest slave trades in the United States before the Civil War and much of the city's initial growth is attributed to that trade.
Louisville was the turning point for many enslaved fls since Kentucky was a neutral state and crossing the Ohio River would lead to freedom in the North.
BIOPROJ.SABR.ORG :: The Baseball Biography Project. (2619 words)
A lifelong resident of Louisville, Pete Browning was the youngest of eight children born to Kentucky natives Samuel Browning (1814-1874) and Mary Jane Sheppard Browning (1826-1911).
His average was a reflection of the doomed season as the Louisvilles finished in the cellar with a 27-111 record and a.196 winning percentage, 661/2 games back of the league champion Brooklyn Bridegrooms.
Louisville, without the six players withholding their labor, lost 4-2 on the road to Baltimore in a rain-shortened five-inning game, the 20th loss in the skein; the scheduled nightcap was washed out.
  More results at FactBites »



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