|As a Brownie....|
|...and as an Oriole.|
In 1954, having moved the St. Louis Browns to Baltimore, the new owners ditched, effectively, their Browns history, saying that the team and the city already have a proud history from the International (minor) League, the National League of the 1890s, and the American Association of the 1880s all named “Baltimore Orioles” (the ill-fated American League team that played two yeas and became the New York Highlanders… not so much ... that's truly the "Team Baseball Forgot").
The Oriole team yearbooks and media guides from the 1950s reflect this. But let's have fun with that, shall we fam? This means that the most successful Orioles pitcher in history is not HofF Jim Palmer, but Jack Ogden. Who was also a Brown!
Palmer W-L% .638
Ogden W-L% .700Ogden's other accolades include:
- Pitcher with the most victories in International League history
- The Baltimore Orioles won six of its seven consecutive International League pennants during Ogden’s tenure.
- Four of those Orioles teams were ranked among the minor leagues’ 19 best ever in the twentieth century.
- Ogden won more than 20-games six times for the Orioles, with seasons of 31, 28, and 27 victories. (Season totals never approached by Palmer, who averaged 14-wins per year).
- If he were included in the Orioles stats, he would be #2 in most innings pitched, between Palmer and Dave McNally.
You see why he is arguably "the greatest 'Oriole' pitcher ever" and certainly the most-successful in terms of winning percentage. And the Orioles of the IL were a minor league club in rank only. Their roster regularly included 85% players who had - or were about to have - major league experience.
Oh .. and Ogden was 15-16 for one of the better Browns teams in history: the 1928 team that finished in third-place and was 10 games over .500. The next year he fell off to 4-8. In 1930 he was claimed off waivers by the Reds.
Ogden stayed in pro baseball until the 1970s with great success wearing several hats. His life story is fascinating and tragic. A recommended good read at SABR.