By: Nick Wells
This week’s ceremonious induction to the MLB Name Hall of Fame is RHP Mordecai Peter Centennial Brown. If that name isn’t grand enough as it is, he also went by the names “Three-Finger Mordecai,” “Miner,” and “Brownie.”
Unlike some athletes who blow half their hand off shooting fireworks in the middle of their multimillion dollar careers, Brown mangled his right index finger in a farm equipment accident that took the finger completely off. In the following year, he suffered from a fall that broke the rest of the fingers on his right hand, resulting in awkwardly angled digits for the rest of his life. So, like any other completely normal person with three fingers, he made his career throwing filth from the mound that not many hitters could manage to get a bat on. His finger placement gave him a special movement of the baseball that was his trademark throughout his legendary career.
Brown made his MLB debut with the St. Louis Cardinals in 1903 but was traded to the Cubs for the following season. In his 10 total years with the Cubs, Brown held a 1.80 ERA in 346 games while racking up 1,043 strikeouts. He also led the Chicago to back-to-back World Series wins in 1907 and 1908 and became the first pitcher in MLB history to throw four consecutive shutouts during the 1908 season. If he had stayed with the team for another century, maybe they wouldn’t have had such a lengthy World Series drought. Instead, Brown spent a year with Cincinnati in 1913 before spending four years in the Federal League. When the Federal League’s short tenure came to an end, Brown returned to the Cubs to end his MLB Hall of Fame career, finishing with an overall 239-130 record and 2.06 ERA.
Stats courtesy of Baseball-Reference.com and sabr.org
Photo Courtesy of baseballhall.org
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