Otto Briggs

From BR Bullpen

Otto Briggs (Mirror)

  • Bats Right, Throws Right
  • Height 5' 7", Weight 155 lb.

Biographical Information[edit]

Otto Briggs was a Negro League player from 1914-1930. He later managed. Primarily an outfielder, he was noted for good speed but a poor arm.

Briggs debuted in 1914 with the West Baden Sprudels. He hit .333 as a starting outfielder for the team in 1915; he also spent part of the season backing up Bingo DeMoss at second base for the Indianapolis ABCs. He was 10 for 32 with 3 walks and 2 doubles for Hilldale in 1917; he would spend the remainder of his playing career with Hilldale. During World War I, he served in the 368th Infantry Regiment in France. Returning to the US, he was just 3 for 20 with a walk for Hilldale in 1919 in their limited games against other top black teams. He hit .217/.265/.239 while playing error-free ball in the outfield in 12 games in 1920. That year, he was also 5 for 21 in exhibitions against white major leaguers.

Mirror hit .310/.379/.450 in 1921 and scored 39 runs in 43 games; by this time, he was the leadoff man for Hilldale, a role he held for several years. He tied Oliver Marcelle and Louis Santop for 5th in the east in doubles (11), was 4th in runs and tied for 5th with five triples. He fell to .272/.331/.368 in 1922 with 24 runs in 34 contests. The North Carolina native hit .298 in 1923 but was just 6 for 30 in exhibitions against white major league pitchers.

In 1924, the 33-year-old batted .285/~.385/.355 for Hilldale. He stole home in game four of the 1924 Negro World Series and hit .273 for the Series, which the club lost to the Kansas City Monarchs. Briggs batted .332 in 1925 and stole 17 bases, second in the Eastern Colored League to Tank Carr. He led the team with a .414 average in the 1925 Negro World Series to help them win it all, getting revenge on Kansas City. In game one of the Series, he nearly scored a 11th-inning go-ahead run but was out at home on a great tag by Frank Duncan.

Briggs went into decline after that, hitting .284 in 1926, .206 in 1927 and .236 in 1928 even though league offensive levels were high. Otto was 1 for 5 against white big leaguers in 1928. He batted .217 in 1930 to end his playing career.

In 1932-1933, he managed the Atlantic City Bacharach Giants, by then a minor team. James Riley lists him as managing Hilldale in 1934 in his bio of Briggs, but he lists Webster McDonald in that same role in his biography of McDonald; John Holway lists McDonald.

After his baseball career, he became circulation manager of the Philadelphia Tribune; his wife's family owned the newspaper. He also coached girls' softball and basketball.

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