Bob Addy
Right fielder/Second Baseman
Born: February 1842 (1842-02)
Port Hope, Canada West[1]
Died: April 9, 1910(1910-04-09) (aged 68)
Pocatello, Idaho, U.S.
Batted: Left
Threw: Left
MLB debut
May 6, 1871, for the Rockford Forest Citys
Last MLB appearance
October 8, 1877, for the Cincinnati Reds
MLB statistics
Batting average.277
Home runs1
Runs batted in167
  National Association of Base Ball Players
Rockford Forest Citys (1866–1870)
  League Player
Rockford Forest Citys (1871)
Philadelphia White Stockings (1873, 1875)
Boston Red Stockings (1873)
Hartford Dark Blues (1874)
Chicago White Stockings (1876)
Cincinnati Reds (1877)
  League Manager
Philadelphia White Stockings (1875)
Cincinnati Reds (1877)
Member of the Canadian
Baseball Hall of Fame

Robert Edward Addy (February 1842 – April 9, 1910), nicknamed "the Magnet",[1] was a Canadian right fielder and second baseman in Major League Baseball, whose professional career spanned from 1871 in the National Association to 1877 in the National League. He is credited as the first player to introduce the slide in an organized game, and later attempted to create a game of baseball that would have been played on ice. He is also credited as the first person born in Canada to appear in a major league game.[2][a]


Born in Port Hope, Ontario, he is credited with employing the first slide in an organized baseball game, while playing for the 1866 Rockford Forest Citys of the National Association of Base Ball Players.[3] He was still playing for the Forrest Citys in 1869,[4] and was with them two years later when Rockford joined the first all-professional league, the National Association of Professional Base Ball Players.[5]

Bob Addy (center) in 1869

Rockford lasted just the one season in the Association, and Addy did not rejoin the league until 1873 when he joined the Philadelphia White Stockings. He played in ten games as player-manager, before moving on and joining the Boston Red Stockings later in the season.[1] He helped the Red Stockings win the league title that year,[6] playing in right field, hitting .355, and finished ninth in the league with a .354 on-base percentage.[1] On January 20, 1874, the National Association's Judiciary Committee met to discuss, among other things, charges that Addy had joined the Boston Red Stockings before 60 days had elapsed since leaving the Philadelphia club. He was acquitted of the charge and was allowed to play.[7]

He did not play for the Red Stockings in 1874, as he signed to play for the Hartford Dark Blues, but his batting declined to .239, and his on-base percentage dropped to .243.[5] For the 1875 season, he re-joined the Philadelphia White Stockings, playing in a career high 69 games. He batted .258, and finished ninth in the league with 16 stolen bases.[1] For one game on October 28, 1875, Addy was used as a National Association umpire.

At season's end, the Association folded and was replaced by National League, and Addy joined the Chicago White Stockings. Chicago won the league title that season, with Addy playing 32 games, and hitting .282.[8] Addy moved to his second Major League team in two years, and sixth team in seven years, when he joined the Cincinnati Reds, playing every day in right field,[9] and later took over as the team's manager after Lip Pike quit the position.[10]


In a 1900 book, Cap Anson described Addy's playing style, writing, "Bob Addy, who was one of the best of the lot, was a good, hard hustling player, a good base runner and a hard hitter. He was as honest as the day is long... He was an odd sort of a genius and quit the game because he thought he could do better at something else."[11]

Addy later made an unsuccessful attempt to popularize baseball played on ice.[12] He died at the age of 68 in Pocatello, Idaho, and is interred at Mountain View Cemetery.[5]

See also


  1. ^ Addy first played in the major leagues in 1871, with the Rockford Forest Citys of the National Association—the status of the National Association as a major league has been a point of some disagreement among baseball historians.


  1. ^ a b c d e "Bob Addy's career statistics". Retrieved 2008-08-17.
  2. ^ "Players by birthplace: Canada Baseball Stats and Info". Retrieved March 28, 2021.
  3. ^ "Thinkquest Timeline". Archived from the original on 2008-06-17. Retrieved 2008-02-17.
  4. ^ "Dressed To The Nines: Parts of the Uniform: Jerseys". Retrieved 2008-08-17.
  5. ^ a b c "Bob Addy's Stats". Retrieved 2008-02-17.
  6. ^ "1873 Boston Red Stockings". Retrieved 2008-08-17.
  7. ^ "1874 Chronology". Archived from the original on 2015-09-20. Retrieved 2008-02-17.
  8. ^ "1876 Chicago White Stockings". Retrieved 2008-08-17.
  9. ^ "1877 Cincinnati Reds". Retrieved 2008-08-17.
  10. ^ Schaefer, Robert H. "The Baseball Biography Project: Lip Pike". Archived from the original on 2008-01-18. Retrieved 2008-08-17.
  11. ^ Anson, Adrian C. (December 1900). A Ball Player's Career. Amereon Ltd. p. 51. ISBN 0-8488-1540-8.
  12. ^ King, Chris (April 13, 2003). "The Forgotten Home Team in Hartford". The New York Times. p. 1. Retrieved 2008-08-17.

Further reading

Preceded byMike McGeary Philadelphia White Stockings Managers 1875 Succeeded byLeague folded Preceded byLip Pike Cincinnati Reds (1876–1880) Managers 1877 Succeeded byJack Manning