Joshua Baldwin Clarke
- Bats Left, Throws Right
- Height 5' 10", Weight 180 lb.
- Debut June 15, 1898
- Final Game May 23, 1911
- Born March 8, 1879 in Winfield, KS USA
- Died July 2, 1962 in Ventura, CA USA
"Josh Clarke a Find: Charley Nichols is particularly pleased with the showing made by Josh Clarke, the '04 pride of Des Moines. The lad is chuckful of ginger and tabasco and besides is slapping the horsehide out at a Lajoie rate. Clarke is a rattling good fielder and is pulling down many a drive that is labelled for the fence. He has more than a family resemblance to his brother... and runs the bags with much of the same dash and abandon." - Sporting Life of March 18, 1905, talking about Josh Clarke's performance for Cardinals' manager Kid Nichols during spring training
Josh Clarke played five seasons in the big leagues, spread out between 1898 to 1911. Only once, from 1908 to 1909, did he see time in successive seasons. He spent most of his career as a left fielder, where his defensive stats were average. Josh had a reputation as a speedster and stole bases.
Josh was an above average hitter who had most of his at-bats during the dead-ball era. The brother of Hall of Famer Fred Clarke, he made his major league debut at age 19 with the Louisville Colonels in 1898, when Fred was a young player-manager. While Fred went on to manage for many years, Josh was only on the team that one year. When he played for the St. Louis Cardinals in 1905, he hit .257 on a team that hit .248. Although he appeared in only 50 games, he was third on the team in home runs. In 1908, with the Cleveland Naps, he hit .242 on a team that hit .239, and had by far his most playing time, playing 131 games. He drew the most walks on the team although his power was below average, adding 37 stolen bases. In 1911, with the Boston Rustlers of the National League, his batting average was below average but he made up for it with an on-base percentage and a slugging percentage that were above the team averages in just 32 games.
Transaction information shows that when he came to the big leagues or left them, he was usually coming from or going to the American Association. He played for the Toledo Mud Hens from 1905-1907, and also played for St. Paul and Columbus. Altogether, he played at least 16 seasons in the minors and managed for six. Sporting Life of March 21, 1908 stated that Josh had over the winter cleared ten acres of timber on his 160-acre Dakota farm, sometimes working when it was 40 degrees below zero.
The brothers Clarke lived long lives, living into the 1960s.
Year-by-Year Managerial Record
|1913||Sioux City Packers||Western League||6th||replaced Ducky Holmes|
|1914||Sioux City Indians||Western League||105-60||1st|
|1915||Sioux City Indians||Western League||--||--||replaced by Harry Gaspar|
|1924||Lincoln Links||Western League||8th||replaced Art Rasmussen|
|1925||Lincoln Links||Western League||--||--||replaced by Frank Haley|