Bullet Rogan

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Rogan at the 1924 Negro League World Series

Charles Wilber Rogan

Inducted into Hall of Fame in 1998

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Biographical Information[edit]

Bullet Rogan played for the Negro League Kansas City Monarchs from 1920 to 1938. He was one of the winningest pitchers in Negro Leagues history, as well as a top hitter, frequently playing an outfield position when not pitching.

Rogan started as a catcher with an amateur team in Kansas City, Kansas, and then enlisted in the United States Army about 1914, and was recruited about 1915 to play for the all-black Twenty-Fifth Infantry Wreckers club at Schofield Barracks until 1918, pitching and playing all positions. While on leave in March and April 1917, Rogan pitched a game for the Los Angeles White Sox, an all-black team in the California Winter League, and then pitched some games for the All-Nations Team in his hometown. The Twenty-Fifth Infantry transferred to Ft. Stephen Little near Nogales, Arizona in 1919, and Rogan got his discharge in June 1920, at which time he joined the Monarchs. In his professional career he played every position except catcher, mainly concentrating on his pitching. Following the death of José Méndez, Rogan became the Monarchs' manager in the late 1920s, retiring from that position in the late thirties. Well into the late 1940s, he umpired in the Negro American League, primarily at Monarchs home games.

He was absolutely dominant in his time in Hawaii from 1915 to 1918, generally regarded as the best player on the island. His statistics in Hawaii were compiled by the semi-pro researcher John Iachetta. As a pitcher he had a 35-2 record, with 468 strikeouts against 49 walks and 142 hits allowed in 355 1/3 innings. He completed all 35 of his starts, 17 of which were shutouts. As a batter, he hit .347 with 28 home runs, 20 doubles, 14 triples, 153 runs scored, and 61 stolen bases in 125 games. He primarily played catcher in 1915. In his last season, 1918, which he spent with the 25th Infantry in the Oahu Service League, he threw shutouts in all six of his starts, for a final record of 7-0 with a 0.30 ERA.

Rogan is thought to have been one of the first pitchers to work from a no-windup position.

Rogan also was a long-time California Winter League star. His 52 complete games is the CWL record and he ranks second in innings pitched and strikeouts (516 and 351 respectively, trailing only Satchel Paige in both categories). He is 5th with 5 shutouts and third with 42 wins (behind Paige and Chet Brewer).

Satchel Paige said this about Rogan in the book Blackball Stars: "Joe Rogan was one of the world's greatest pitchers. ...He was a chunky little guy, but he could throw hard. He could throw hard as Smokey Joe Williams-yeah."

Notable Achievements[edit]

  • NNL ERA Leader (1921)
  • 2-time NNL Wins Leader (1923 & 1924)
  • NNL Winning Percentage Leader (1925)
  • NNL Saves Leader (1922)
  • NNL Innings Pitched Leader (1923)
  • 2-time NNL Strikeouts Leader (1923 & 1925)
  • 3-time NNL Complete Games Leader (1922, 1923 & 1925)
  • 2-time NNL Shutouts Leader (1923 & 1925)
  • 15 Wins Seasons: 4 (1921 & 1923-1925)
  • 200 Innings Pitched Seasons: 2 (1921 & 1923)
  • Won one Negro World Series with the Kansas City Monarchs in 1924
  • NNL Pennants: 1 (1929)
  • Postseason Appearance: 1 (1926)
  • Baseball Hall of Fame: Class of 1998

Year-By-Year Managerial Record[edit]

Year Team League Record Finish Organization Playoffs Notes
1926 Kansas City Monarchs Negro National League 60-22 1st Kansas City Monarchs Lost League Finals
1927 Kansas City Monarchs Negro National League 55-33 3rd Kansas City Monarchs
1928 Kansas City Monarchs Negro National League 50-29 2nd Kansas City Monarchs
1929 Kansas City Monarchs Negro National League 66-17 1st Kansas City Monarchs League Champs
1930 Kansas City Monarchs Negro National League 26-10 -- Kansas City Monarchs Replaced by Dink Mothell

External links[edit]


Further Reading[edit]

  • David Adler: "Bullet Rogan: The Negro Leagues' Two-Way Star", "The Negro Leagues", mlb.com, [1]

Related Sites[edit]