Pitcher Amos Rusie was known as
"The Hoosier Thunderbolt."
Less than two years later, Rusie was pitching for the Indianapolis Hoosiers (then in the National League), who signed the local boy for both his drawing-card appeal and his blinding speed.
In 1890, the 19-year-old Rusie led all NL hurlers with 341
In the pitcher’s box, though, “The Hoosier Thunderbolt” was in his element. More than any other hurler, Rusie prompted the last significant change in the geometric design of the playing field. During the 1892 season, batting averages plummeted to a record low. The game’s rulemakers then decided to move the pitching distance from 50 feet from home plate to 60 feet, six inches.
Although Rusie’s strikeouts dipped sharply in 1893, the first year the mound was situated at its present location, he still led the league by a total nearly double that of runner-up Brickyard Kennedy. After topping the loop in whiffs again the next two seasons, Rusie sat out all 1896 when Freedman first attempted to fine him $200 and then cut his pay.
Returning in 1897, when the other clubs kicked in $5,000 to reimburse him for the salary he had lost in 1896, Rusie had two more strong years with the Giants. Wounded by Freedman’s skinflint methods again, Amos skipped the 1899 season, then was prevented by personal problems from playing in 1900.
Reds’ owner John Brush was about to purchase part of the
Giants in 1901. So before the 1901 campaign, Rusie was traded to
Here are Amos Rusie’s major league totals:
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