Today in Tribe History: January 15, 1891
Bob Toth | On 15, Jan 2020
The tragically short life of Ray Chapman begins in Beaver Dam, Kentucky.
Chapman reached the Majors at the age of 21, playing shortstop for the Cleveland Naps in 1912. He blossomed into an everyday player for the club, primarily slotting into the lineup on the left side of the middle infield, but also spending some time at second, third, and in the outfield.
Chapman was having one of his statistically better seasons in 1920 in his ninth season in Cleveland and in the MLB. But on August 16, Chapman became an unfortunate statistic of his own, as an errant pitch from New York Yankees pitcher Carl Mays struck him in the left temple.
His skull fractured and compressed onto his swelling brain. Blood clots were found over the course of a 75-minute surgery to address his injuries. The efforts to help him were in vain, as Chapman would die the following morning at the age of 29.