John Joseph Evers (July 21, 1881 – March 28, 1947) was a Major League Baseball player and manager. He was born in Troy, New York. The name originally rhymed with beavers rather than severs, but Evers came to accept both pronunciations during his life.
Evers, a second baseman, made it to the big leagues with the Chicago Cubs in 1902 and played for the Cubs through 1913, during which time he appeared in three World Series and won two (in 1907 and 1908). One of the smallest men ever to play in the major leagues, Evers reportedly weighed less than 100 pounds (45 kg) when he first broke in, and generally played at a weight under 130 pounds (59 kg). His combative play earned him the nickname "The Crab."
In 1914 Evers was traded to the Boston Braves, which proved to be a spectacular combination — the Braves won the World Series, and Evers won the Chalmers Award (a forerunner of the MVP award). Evers played with the Braves until 1917, when he was claimed off waivers by the Philadelphia Phillies in mid-season. He retired from playing after that season, having batted .300 or higher twice in his career, stolen 324 bases and scored 919 runs.
Evers is best known to modern-day fans as the pivot man in the "Tinker to Evers to Chance" double play combination, which inspired the classic baseball poem, Baseball's Sad Lexicon, by New York newspaper columnist Franklin Pierce Adams. He was also the player who alerted the umpires to Fred Merkle's baserunning error in the 1908 pennant race, costing the Giants the pennant.
Johnny Evers died of a cerebral hemorrhage in 1947 in Albany, New York. He is interred in St. Mary's Cemetery in Troy, New York. Evers was the 2nd of the 3 DP men to die - Frank Chance died in 1924 and Joe Tinker in 1948. Third-baseman Harry Seinfeldt died in 1914.
Evers is mentioned in the poem "Lineup for Yesterday" by Ogden Nash:
|Lineup for Yesterday|
|E is for Evers,|
His jaw in advance;
to Tinker with Chance.
|— Ogden Nash, Sport magazine (January 1949)|
- baseballhalloffame.org – Hall of Fame biography page
- Career statistics and player information from Baseball-Reference, or Fangraphs, or The Baseball Cube
- Baseball-reference.com – Major league career managerial statistics
- Chicago Cubs Team History
- Baseball Hall of Fame: Fiery Evers a legendary figure in Cubs lore
|Chicago Cubs Manager|
|Chicago White Sox Manager|