William Leopold Hoffer
(Chick or Wizard)
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 5' 9", Weight 155 lb.
- Debut April 26, 1895
- Final Game July 4, 1901
- Born November 8, 1870 in Cedar Rapids, IA USA
- Died July 21, 1959 in Cedar Rapids, IA USA
"I couldn't pitch my best when I wasn't mad. McGraw would yell at me 'You fat-headed Dutchman' and maybe some other insults. Then I'd get mad and throw that ball so damned hard." - Bill Hoffer
Bill Hoffer is a member of the Des Moines Register Iowa Sports Hall of Fame.
Hoffer was with Nashville in 1893 in the Southern League, and then came to Buffalo in 1894. In 1895, he came to the majors with the Baltimore Orioles, a famous team featuring John McGraw, Hughie Jennings, and Wilbert Robinson. Hoffer didn't disappoint, going 31-6 in his first major league season and leading the National League in winning percentage. The Orioles won the pennant.
"Gol, what a team that was!" - Bill Hoffer, about the Baltimore Orioles
His minor league career also included pitching in the Nebraska League, the Illinois League, and the Western League. In all, he played baseball for 20 years, and then was an engineer and conductor for an Iowa railway. He managed the 1904 Des Moines Prohibitionists. He also umpired one NL game in 1896.
Born in Cedar Rapids, IA, after his baseball days he lived in Cedar Rapids for many years before he died there.
Main source: desmoinesregister.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/19530329/SPORTS11/50627021
- 2-time NL Winning percentage Leader (1895 & 1896)
- AL Saves Leader (1901)
- NL Shutouts Leader (1895)
- 20 Wins Seasons: 3 (1895-1897)
- 30 Wins Seasons: 1 (1895)
- 200 Innings Pitched Seasons: 3 (1895-1897)
- 300 Innings Pitched Seasons: 3 (1895-1897)