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Ralph Ham

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Ralph A. Ham

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[edit] Biographical Information

Left fielder Ralph Ham played just one season, for the 1871 Rockford Forest Citys. A teammate of Cap Anson, he was three years older.

He was born, and died, in Troy, NY, a hotbed of early baseball.

Don't be fooled too much by Ham's 13 errors in 19 games in left field. Rockford's home park, the Agricultural Society Fair Grounds, didn't exactly provide the true hops of, say, Wrigley Field. For one thing, there were trees in the outfield, which made the game play slightly more like pin-ball than base-ball. Second, the field wasn't exactly level. Third base was on a hill, and home plate was in a valley, which I would expect affected the sight lines in left at least a little. Not at risk of winning any gold gloves, but maybe not the worst of all time, either.

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