Jacob Peter Beckley
- Bats Left, Throws Left
- Height 5' 10", Weight 200 lb.
- Debut June 20, 1888
- Final Game June 15, 1907
- Born August 4, 1867 in Hannibal, MO USA
- Died June 25, 1918 in Kansas City, MO USA
Beckley began his pro career with the Leavenworth Soldiers of the Western League in 1886. He reached the majors in 1888, when the Pittsburgh Alleghenys of the National League purchased his contract from the St. Louis Whites of the Western Association for $2,500. In 71 games with the team that year, he hit .343. In 1890, he jumped to the Pittsburgh Burghers of the upstart Players League along with several teammates, and he tied teammate Joe Visner for the league lead with 22 triples that year. The circuit folded after one season, and he returned to the NL squad, now known as the Pirates. He scored over 100 runs in each season from 1892 to 1895 and drove in more than 100 runs three times during that span.
Beckley was traded to the New York Giants during the 1896 season and moved on to the Cincinnati Reds about a year later. In seven seasons with the Reds, he hit over .300 six times. His contract was purchased by the St. Louis Cardinals prior to the 1904 season, and he spent his final four years in the big leagues with the club. Following his major league days, he played and managed in the minors for several summers. he also umpired in one National League game in 1906.
Beckley is #46 on the all-time list for runs scored, #33 for hits, #4 for triples, and #39 for RBI (as of 2011). Based on Adjusted OPS+, his best year was his rookie season, at age 20. Although he hardly ever led the league in batting categories, he was frequently among the leaders as his Gray Ink score of 165 shows. The nine players most similar to him (based on the similarity scores method) are all in the Hall of Fame. He coached William Jewell College. Beckley was elected to the Hall on January 31, 1971 by the Committee on Baseball Veterans.
- PL Triples Leader (1890)
- 100 RBI Seasons: 4 (1890 & 1893-1895)
- 100 Runs Scored Seasons: 5 (1890 & 1892-1895)
- Baseball Hall of Fame: Class of 1971
- Putouts, first baseman, career, 23731
- Triple plays, first baseman, career, 8
Year-by-Year Managerial Record
|1907||Tulsa Oilers||Oklahoma-Arkansas-Kansas League||37-60||--||Team disbanded August 6|
|1909||Kansas City Blues||American Association||36-38||--||--||replaced Monte Cross (8-12) on May 11|
replaced by Danny Shay (27-43) on July 27
|1910||Bartlesville Boosters||Western Association||--||Team disbanded July 31||replaced Frank Barbour|
- Bob Nightengale: "The mystery behind Hall of Famer Jake Beckley", USA Today Sports, March 8, 2016.