Chicago Cubs Greatest All-Time Players: No. 10 – Frank Chance
Frank Chance has to be considered one of the best player-managers of all-time. He reigned over the franchise’s Golden Era in the early 1900s, when the team won four National League pennants and two World Series titles from 1906 to 1910 and quite literally did it all.
From 1905 to 1910, Chance put up a 137 OPS+ – buoyed by a .392 OBP during that stretch. Although he didn’t put up the power numbers fans clamor for in today’s game, it really wasn’t necessary. He got on base and was the guiding hand on the tiller of those Cubs teams.
Player-managers are so much more difficult to evaluate by typical ‘baseball card’ numbers. The National Baseball Hall of Fame showcases this quote from John McGraw that really does justice to what Chance brought to the table for Chicago.
"“He was a great player – I think one of the best first basemen ever in the game – but in addition he was a great leader because he asked no man to take any chance that he would not take himself and because he had the power to instill enthusiasm even in a losing cause.”"
Suffice to say, he was far more than the tale end of the iconic ‘Tinkers to Evers to Chance’ line. He’s one of the key reasons there were two other World Series banners blowing in the breeze when, on Opening Day in 2017, the Cubs hung a third.
Accomplishments & Awards
- Two-time World Series Champion (1907, 1908)