Bid McPhee

2nd Baseman

Class of 2000

Bid McPhee

2nd Baseman

Class of 2000
For the majority of his career, Bid McPhee played without a glove; and when he did use one, he set a record for fielding percentage by a second baseman.


Birth year

About Bid McPhee

“This glove business has gone a little too far. True, hot-hit balls do sting a little at the opening of the season, but after you get used to it there is no trouble on that score.” – Bid McPhee

John “Bid” McPhee is regarded as one of the best defensive second basemen in the 19th century. For almost his entire 18-year career, McPhee took the field without benefit of a glove. He first used a glove in 1896 when he was 36 and promptly set a record for fielding percentage by a second baseman.

McPhee played his whole career with the Cincinnati Reds, beginning in 1882 when the organization was a part of the American Association and called the Red Stockings. That season, McPhee helped the Red Stockings to the American Association championship.

Aside from his defense, McPhee was also known for his ability to hit triples. He only once led the league in triples (19 in 1887), but he ranks 11th all-time with 189. He also stole more than 568 bases and scored 100-or-more runs 10 times.

But McPhee’s refusal to wear a glove may be his most remembered quality. When he finally put on a glove for the first time, The Cincinnati Enquirer reported it was in an attempt to protect a sore he had developed on his left hand. His fielding percentage jumped from .955 in 1895 to .978 in 1896.

McPhee retired after the 1899 season at the age of 39. He finished with a career .272 batting average, 1,684 runs scored and a .944 fielding percentage, having led his league's second basemen in double plays 11 times, putouts nine times, fielding percentage seven times and assists six times. His 6,552 putouts remain the most of any second baseman in history.

McPhee passed away on Jan. 3, 1943. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2000.

The Basics

Year inducted
Birth Place
Massena, New York
Birth Year
1943, San Diego California

Career at a Glance

Primary Team
Cincinnati Red Stockings
Primary Position
2nd Baseman
Played For
Cincinnati Red Stockings, 1882-1889
Cincinnati Reds, 1890-1899

Career MLB Stats

At bats
Home Runs
Stolen Bases
Batting Average
On Base %
Slugging %

Bid McPhee Stories

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Anderson, Fisk, McPhee, Perez, Stearnes enter Hall as Class of 2000