His nickname was "Bad Bill," but by no means should that negate the impressive career of Bill Dahlen.
Playing with four National League clubs from 1891-1911, the hot-tempered shortstop was one of the surest fielders and steadiest hitters in the game. Dahlen recorded 2,458 hits, including 163 triples, 84 home runs and 547 stolen bases during the dead-ball era. Defensively, he racked up 7,500 assists at shortstop playing for the Chicago Colts/Orphans (1891-98), Brooklyn Superbas/Dodgers (1899-1903, 1910-11), New York Giants (1904-07) and Boston Doves (1908-09).
Dahlen will be considered for the National Baseball Hall of Fame's class of 2009 by the Veterans Committee. Any player receiving at least 75 percent of the vote from the Veterans Committee, which consists of 64 living Hall of Famers, will be enshrined at the Hall of Fame as part of the Class of 2009. Results from the vote will be revealed at noon CT on MLB.com on Monday from baseball's Winter Meetings in Las Vegas.
The other members of the pre-1943 Veterans Committee final ballot are Wes Ferrell, Joe Gordon, Sherry Magee, Carl Mays, Allie Reynolds, Vern Stephens, Mickey Vernon, Bucky Walters and Deacon White.
Unfortunately for Dahlen's fame, he played in the same era, in the same league and at the same position as Honus Wagner. He couldn't replicate Wagner's statistics, but few could.
Dahlen was a career .272 hitter, including two .350-plus seasons during his best days in Chicago. He peaked as a 24-year-old in 1894, when he racked up 15 homers and 107 RBIs while hitting .357, all career bests. His 42-game hitting streak that year broke the Major League record. It currently stands as the fourth-longest streak of all time. After going 0-for-6 to snap the run, Dahlen reeled off a 28-gamer, giving him hits in 70 of 71 games.
In his first six seasons, he scored at least 100 runs with 10 or more triples. As the turn of the century came and passed, he slowly faded. He didn't hit over .270 after turning 30.
Dahlen played in one World Series, the 1905 Fall Classic between his Giants and the Athletics. Though New York won in five, Dahlen went 0-for-15.
He was a player/manager his final two seasons in Brooklyn and compiled a 251-355 record in four total years at the helm.