Born: Sept. 1, 1850, in East Bridgeport, Connecticut
Died: Jan. 8, 1919, in Bridgeport, Conn. (68 years old)
Pros: Boston Red Stockings/Red Caps (1873-78), Providence Grays (1879), Boston Red Caps (1880), Buffalo Bison (1881-84), New York Giants (1885-89, 1891-92), Washington Senators (1893), New York Giants (1904)
Position: Outfield, catcher and first base
Bottom line: Jim O’Rourke was not allowed to sign his first pro contract until someone could take over his chores on the family farm, delaying his entry into baseball.
Once got to the majors at age of 21 in 1873, he excelled. He registered the first hit in National League history in 1876 and finished his 23-year career with 2,639 hits.
Along with his baseball skills, "Orator Jim" was well-known for his intellect and earned a law degree from Yale. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1945.