Named for his hometown of Bedford, Indiana, Rariden was a light-hitting catcher who became a regular in the Federal League and later was involved in one of the most famous plays in World Series history. He helped the Indianapolis Hoosiers to the pennant in 1914, leading FL catchers in putouts and assists. He repeated in those categories in 1915, also leading in total chances per game and errors, and had his best offensive season, batting .270 and setting career highs with 30 doubles, seven triples, and 49 runs. He also showed a good eye, walking 60 times for a .357 on-base percentage.
A standout behind the plate, Rariden was purchased from Newark by John McGraw when the Federal League folded, and caught most of the games in the Giants’ 26-game winning streak in 1916. He led NL catchers in putouts and total chances per game in 1916 and helped the Giants to the NL pennant in 1917 with a career-high .271 average. In the World Series, he drove in a run in New York’s 3-2 Game Four victory, but in Game Six White Sox runner Eddie Collins eluded him in a rundown, and Rariden then neglected to cover home as Heinie Zimmerman vainly chased Collins across the plate. In February 1919 he was traded to the Reds for Hal Chase and was a backup on their World Championship team in that, his final, season.