Bill Werber

Werber, the first All-American basketball player at Duke University, signed with the Yankees after his senior year. Scout Paul Krichell said he had “the best baseball legs I ever saw, including Cobb.” Werber won the AL base stealing title with the Red Sox in 1934 and 1935 and tied for it while with the A’s in 1937. He once reached second base on a walk while Detroit catcher Ray Hayworth was talking to the umpire. He was the first player to hit four consecutive doubles in one AL game (7/17/35) and on May 13, 1940 became the only man to do so in both leagues.

When Werber held out for $1,500 more than Connie Mack was willing to pay, the A’s traded him to Cincinnati in 1939. The Reds gave him the raise, but he turned it back to the club at the end of the season. A fiery competitor, he formed the “Jungle Club” for hustling players, spurring the previously lethargic Reds to pennants in 1939 and 1940. He was the first player to bat in a televised game, leading off for the Reds against Brooklyn, August 26, 1939.