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Levi Meyerle

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Levi Samuel Meyerle (Long Levi)

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[edit] Biographical Information

Levi Meyerle was a big star in early baseball. He would likely have been the MVP in 1871, the first year of the National Association, had the award been given then, and he is credited with getting both the first double and the first triple that year. His team, the 1871 Philadelphia Athletics, won the first pennant.

He had a .492 BA in 1871 (no one else was higher than .353 on his team), and also led the league with 4 home runs in 1871 (he slugged .700 on a team that slugged .435). He was the top hitter in the league in 1874 as well - his batting average was 80 points higher than anyone on his team and his slugging percentage was nearly 150 higher.

His major league career ended due to an ankle injury, although he came back briefly in 1884.

Born in July 1849, he was 21 before the National Association started play, and 26 before the National League formed. He had played for Philadelphia in 1869 and for Chicago in 1870. He was listed for a long time as having been born in 1845, but Census records indicated that 1849 was his true birth year.

He was nicknamed "Long Levi", presumably because at 6' 1", he was one of the taller players in the league. Not a star defensively, he appeared in about half his games at third base and about one quarter at second base.

He lived to be 72 years old, dying in November 1921, the same month that Roy Campanella was born (both events happened in Philadelphia, PA). His portrait can be found in the book 19th Century Baseball in Chicago.

[edit] Notable Achievements

  • 2-time NA Batting Average Leader (1871 & 1874)
  • 2-time NA On-Base Percentage Leader (1871 & 1874)
  • 2-time NA OPS Leader (1871 & 1874)
  • NA Slugging Percentage Leader (1871)
  • NA Home Runs Leader (1871)
  • NA Total Bases Leader (1871)

[edit] Related Sites

BR minors page

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