Friday, February 26, 2010

Houtz Rejects Cincinnati's Overture

Cincinnati wants Houtz, but he does not wish to serve in a league nine. For which decision Indianapolitans unite in saying "Good boy," not "Good-bye."
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, August 15, 1876

I would imagine that Charlie Houtz was not alone in not wanting to play with a League club. I'm certain that many players were comfortable and making a decent wage playing with some of the minor professional teams. The League, in 1876, was a long way away from having all the best players in the country on their clubs.


Richard Hershberger said...

That Houtz would stay at Indianapolis is unsurprising. Presumably he was under contract, and so long as they were paying him more or less on time, this just means he chose to keep his end of the bargain.

I am more surprised to see it put in terms of not wanting to play on a League club. This seems early for player resentment against heavy handed League personnel policies.

Jeffrey Kittel said...

Houtz may also have been content in his situation. The last year had been rather eventful for him and he had played on a couple of failed clubs. Indianapolis, by contrast, was stable and moving towards entering the League. He was also probably getting paid well as Indianapolis was trying to put a decent club together.

It's possible that the resentment expressed came from the Globe's editorial voice. Spink had been expressing anti-League sentiments since it became clear that the Reds would not be a part of the brave new world.