~Gabe Gabler 1930 (Cubs 1958)
Gabler was a power hitter during his 11-year minor league career, but he only got one shot at the big time with the 1958 Cubs. He was used a pinch hitter three times. His first time up he struck out in the 10th inning of a game in Philadelphia. The Cubs won it later that inning. His second shot came in the seventh inning of a game at Wrigley Field against the Dodgers. Gabe struck out. And in his final at-bat in the big leagues (also against the Dodgers at Wrigley), Gabe was brought in as a pinch hitter in the bottom of the ninth against former Cub Johnny Klippstein. There was no joy in Wrigley, as the mighty Gabler struck out again.
~Len Gabrielson 1940 (Cubs 1964-1965)
Gabrielson had one of the best seasons of his nine year career with the Cubs in 1964. After Lou Brock was traded in June of that season, Len became the team’s starting right fielder. It was just a tiny bit of a downgrade for the Cubs. Brock hit .348 for the Cardinals (and led them to the World Series), and Gabrielson hit .246 for the Cubs (and led them to 8th place). Len’s father (also named Len) was a big leaguer too. He played for the Phillies in 1939. (Photo: Topps 1965 Baseball Card)
~Gary Gaetti 1958 (Cubs 1998-1999)
The Cubs acquired the former World Series champ (1987 Twins) for the stretch run in 1998. Gaetti came through with clutch hit after clutch hit. In only 27 games he hit 8 homers and batted .320. Unfortunately, he disappeared in the playoffs against the Braves. The Cubs gave him a shot to be their third baseman the following year too, but the lightning had been let out of the bottle. The 40-year old was out of gas. He hit only .204 in over 300 plate appearances in 1999.
~Phil Gagliano 1941 (Cubs 1970)
Gagliano played 12 seasons in the big leagues (including 1970 with the Cubs), but he never claimed a starting job in all that time. The infielder played a little first, second, and third base for Chicago in 26 games, and hit .150.
~Augie Galan 1912 (Cubs 1934-1941)
Augie was the leadoff man on the Cubs team that set the all-time record by winning 21 games in a row in 1935. He was the hottest hitter of all the Cubs during the streak. Augie hit 5 of his 12 home runs that season and batted an astounding .358 to finish the season at .314. There were only two games he didn’t reach base. But after carrying the team on his back to win the pennant, Galan didn’t have a good World Series against the Tigers. He hit only .160. In 1936, Augie was an all-star. In 1937, he led the league in stolen bases, and in 1938 he was a part of the pennant winners as well. But despite his many heroics in a Cubs uniform, the Cubs traded Augie to the Dodgers in 1941. Galan still had plenty left in the tank. He played another eight seasons of big league ball for the Dodgers, Reds, Giants, and A’s.
~Sean Gallagher 1985 (Cubs 2007)
Gallagher was brought up for a trial with the Cubs as a 21-year-old rookie, and was hit pretty hard. In 14.2 innings he gave up 14 runs and walked 12. The Cubs threw him in the deal for Rich Harden (along with future all-star Josh Donaldson) in 2009. Gallagher later pitched for the A’s, Padres, and Pirates.
~Oscar Gamble 1949 (Cubs 1969)
In November of 1969, the Cubs made a trade that they hoped would put them over the top. They traded pitcher Dick Selma and a young prospect, to the Phillies for former all-star outfielder Johnny Callison. Unfortunately for the Cubs, that young prospect turned out to be Oscar Gamble. Gamble was only 19 years old at the time, but he had already gotten a taste of the majors with the Cubs. How did that trade turn out? Gamble played in the majors until 1985, and hit 200 home runs. Of those 200 home runs, only one of them came for the Cubs. He went on to play in the World Series for the Yankees, and hit .358 for them in 1979. Most horribly, his best season was with the Southside Hitmen 1977 Chicago White Sox. Callison had one semi-decent year, then was done. Needless to say, he wasn’t the final piece to take them over the top. The biggest tragedy, however, was what could have been on the north side if they had never traded Gamble. After Jose Cardenal joined the Cubs in the early 70s, the Cubs could have had the greatest “fro” outfield of all-time.
~Bill Gannon 1873 (Orphans 1901)
Gannon was a career minor leaguer who got one cup of coffee in the big leagues in 1901. He was a 28-year-old rookie outfielder who filled in for future Hall of Famer Frank Chance (who hadn’t yet been moved to first base). Gannon went back to the minors after the season, and played baseball until 1907. His story does not have a happy ending, however. In 1927, Bill Gannon committed suicide in Fort Worth Texas.
~John Ganzel 1874 (Orphans 1900)
Ganzel was a first baseman on the 1900 Cubs (then known as the Orphans). He hit .275 and drove 32 runs. He later played for the Giants, Yankees, and Reds. His brother Charlie and nephew Babe also both played big league ball.
~Joe Garagiola 1926 (Cubs 1953-1954)
He was a backup catcher for most of his nine-year big league career, and that’s the role he served in Chicago. His big claim to fame with the Cubs was catching all nine innings of a game in what was at the time, the hottest day in Chicago history, June 20, 1953. Despite the 104 degree heat, 17,000+ fans came out to Wrigley Field to see the Cubs lose to the Dodgers 5-3. Of course, Joe became much more famous after his playing career as a sportscaster and television personality. He passed away in 2016.
~Bob Garbark 1909 (Cubs 1937-1939)
Bob was a backup catcher in the big leagues for seven seasons, three of which were with the Cubs. Of course, he was backing up Hall of Famer Gabby Hartnett at the time, so Bob didn’t get a lot of playing time. He appeared in 48 games over three seasons, and didn’t get a single extra base hit. He later played for the A’s and the Red Sox.
~Rich Garces 1971 (Cubs 1995)
He only pitched for the Cubs for two months in 1995. He appeared in seven games and posted a 3.27 ERA. Garces was nicknamed “El Guapo” by former teammate Mike Maddux because he looked like the villain in the movie “The Three Amigos”. After he left the Cubs he became a pretty good reliever for the Red Sox. He pitched in the big leagues until 2002.
~Nomar Garciaparra 1973 (Cubs 2004-2005)
The Red Sox shocked the world when they traded their five-time all-star and two-time batting champion to the Cubs as part of a four team trade in 2004. It seemed like the Cubs made a great trade. They gave up their shortstop who had made a critical error the year before (Alex Gonzalez) and a few other minor prospects, for one of the best hitters in the American League. Red Sox nation was very upset by the trade (made by Theo Epstein, by the way), and Chicago gave Nomar a standing ovation his first time up to bat. His wife (Mia Hamm) became a regular at Wrigley Field that summer. So what happened? The Red Sox won the World Series. And the Cubs? They blew a big lead in the closing week of the season to miss the playoffs completely. The following season Nomar suffered a horrible injury (tearing his groin) and missed most of the year. Despite a very warm welcome, and a fan base that was rooting for him, it never worked out for Nomar in Chicago. In 2006, he signed as a free agent with the Dodgers, where he had his final all-star season. (Photo: Topps 2005 Baseball Card)
~Jim Gardner 1874 (Orphans 1902)
Gardner was on the same pitching staff as Rhoads (above), but he didn’t pitch as much. The 28-year-old was only given three starts. He completed two of them. Those were the last two appearances of his big league career. He also played in the field earlier in his career (2B, 3B, OF) for Pittsburgh.
~Rob Gardner 1944 (Cubs 1967)
Gardner was a lefty reliever who pitched for seven different teams in his eight year big league career. One of those teams was the 1967 Cubs. Gardner appeared in 18 games and posted an ERA of 3.98. The Cubs traded him to the Indians after the season.
~Daniel Garibay 1973 (Cubs 2000)
Garibay was born and raised in Mexico, and didn’t get his first shot at Major League Baseball until he was 27 years old. The Cubs used him as a spot starter and a reliever, and he didn’t do well in either role. He went 2-8 with an ERA over 6.
~Jeff Garlin 1962 (Cubs fan 1962-present)
He is best known for his portrayal of Larry David’s manager in the HBO Series “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” but stand up comedian, “Wall-E” voice over star, and “The Goldbergs” star Jeff Garlin is also known for his over-the-top love a certain team from a certain north side of a certain city near Lake Michigan. Garlin loves the Cubs. He comes by his love the way many of us do…”When I was growing up, I played baseball. I was a huge Cub fan. I lived in Morton Grove [Ill.]. I pretended to be Billy Williams when I was batting.” Though he has been in Los Angeles now for 20 years, he still follows the Cubs. Maybe “follows” is not a strong enough description. He puts it a little more emphatically…”I don’t miss a game between Direct TV and XM satellite radio. I listen to or watch every single Cubs game.” He also returns to Chicago every year to sing “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” and is proud that he has performed that more times than any other actor/performer. While he’ll never be signed to a recording deal, Garlin does a respectable job. Be sure of one thing. When the Cubs did the impossible and won the World Series, when the network cameras surveyed the crowd they found one rather heavy set actor dressed in Cubbie blue sporting the biggest smile you’ve ever seen.
~Mike Garman 1949 (Cubs 1976)
Garman was the third overall pick in the 1967 draft by the Red Sox (right before John Matlack). He was acquired by the Cubs from the Cardinals for Don Kessinger after the 1975 season, and spent one full season in the Cubs bullpen. He had a few good years in the big leagues, including the year before (10 saves) and year after (12 saves) his time with the Cubs, but he couldn’t hack it in Chicago. He appeared in 47 games, and his ERA hovered around 5.00. He was part of the package (along with Rick Monday) that brought Bill Buckner and Ivan de Jesus to Chicago from Los Angeles.
~Adrian Garrett 1943 ( Cubs 1970, 1973-75)
Garrett was primarily used as a pinch hitter because he had a lot of power. He hit 280 homers in the minors and 102 in Japan. His little brother Wayne was a member of the 1969 Miracle Mets. (Photo: Topps 1974 Baseball Card)
~Cecil Garriot 1916 (1946 Cubs)
Cecil’s only shot in the big leagues came as a September call up for the Cubs in 1946. He batted six times–always as a pinch hitter–and didn’t get a hit. He was hit by a pitch in one of those at bats, however, and scored his only big league run. Cecil played 16 seasons in the minors.
~Ned Garvin 1874 (Pitcher, 1899-1900 Orphans)
Ned was kicked out of the National League for attacking the team’s traveling secretary.
~Matt Garza 1983 (Cubs 2011-2013)
Garza was a stud starting pitcher who had pitched a no-hitter and led his Tampa Rays to the World Series before he joined the Cubs. Matt was acquired for several prospects prior to the 2011 season; Chris Archer (who has turned out to be a very good pitcher) and three other players including Sam Fuld. Unfortunately, Garza never could put it together for Chicago. He had flashes of brilliance, and rashes of arm injuries. He was 6-1 in 2013 when the Cubs traded him to the Rangers for four prospects in 2013. Two of those prospects played for the Cubs in 2014 & 2015; Mike Olt, and Neil Ramirez. The other two are still part of the Cubs bullpen: Justin Grimm and Carl Edwards Jr.
~Charlie Gassaway 1918 (Cubs 1944)
They called him the Sheriff. Charlie pitched for the Cubs during the war season of 1944, and it didn’t go well. In two appearances covering 11.2 innings, he allowed a massive 30 baserunners.
~Ed Gastfield 1865 (White Stockings 1885)
Ed was only 19 years old when he played for the Cubs (then known as the White Stockings) on July 11, 1885. The team was on it’s way to a championship, and Ed was a one-day replacement at catcher. He went O for 3. The following season he played in the minors up in Wisconsin, but his baseball career was essentially over the by time he was 21. Ed didn’t live to see the turn of the century. He died in Chicago in 1899, at the age of 34.
~Joey Gathright 1981 (Cubs 2009)
Gathright was a speedster who stole nearly 80 bases in the five seasons before coming to the Cubs (in limited playing time). With the Cubs his playing time was even more limited. They just couldn’t find a spot to play him, so they traded him to the Orioles for Ryan Freel in May of 2009.
~John Gaub 1985 (Cubs 2011)
The Cubs picked up John in the Mark DeRosa trade to the Indians on New Years Eve 2008 (along with pitcher Chris Archer and Jeff Stevens). Gaub was a major leaguer for exactly two weeks in September of 2011. He pitched out of the bullpen for the Cubs as a situational lefty. In four appearances he pitched a total of 2.2 innings and gave up two runs.
~Chad Gaudin 1983 (Cubs 2008)
The Cubs acquired him in the trade that brought Rich Harden to the team in July of 2008 (for Matt Murton and Eric Patterson). While Harden showed flashes of brilliance, Gaudin did not. He was hit hard, and hit often. His ERA with Chicago was 6.26. The Cubs released him the following April thinking his career was done, but Gaudin surprised everyone. He has since pitched for the Padres, A’s, Nationals, Marlins, Giants, and the Yankees. That 2009 Yankees team won the World Series.
~Chippy Gaw 1892 (Cubs 1920)
One of the greatest names in baseball history–Chippy Gaw–pitched only briefly for the Cubs. After logging nearly ten years in the minors, he got into six big league games in 1920, mainly as a reliever. In his last Major League appearance on July 4, 1920, he came in to relieve Cubs great Hippo Vaughn. He pitched a third of an inning and didn’t allow a run. He pitched a few more years in the minors before hanging up his spikes for good in 1922. After his playing career was over, Chippy went into coaching…hockey. He was the head hockey coach at both Princeton and Dartmouth, and later also coached Boston University’s baseball team. His real first name, by the way, was George.
~Dave Geisel 1955 (Cubs 1978-1981)
Geisel pitched for the Cubs for three seasons, and later also pitched for the Blue Jays and Mariners.
~Emil Geiss 1867 (White Stockings 1887)
Emil was a 20-year-old Chicago boy who got exactly one big league start, and that came for his beloved hometown Cubs (then known as the White Stockings) on May 18, 1887. He took the mound against the Washington Nationals (that’s right–they were called that in 1880s) in Washington. Young Emil went the distance, but he gave up 17 hits and 11 runs, and the White Stockings lost the game 11-4. Emil knocked around the minors a few years after that, but never got another shot at the bigtime. He passed away in Chicago in 1911 at the way too young age of 44.
Cardinal Francis George 1937 (Cubs fan 1937-present)
While he was certainly honored to be named a Cardinal by Pope John Paul II, there must have been a small twinge in the heart of Francis George when the title was bestowed upon him. After all, the Cardinal is a Cub fan, and every Cubs fan knows that being called a Cardinal must be a bittersweet experience at best. Cardinal George grew up on the Northwest Side of Chicago, and has been rooting for the Cubs since he was a young boy. It was one of the first things he told the press when he was named the Archbishop of Chicago in May of 1997. He considered a Cubs victory on the day he was installed a sign that being named the spiritual leader of Chicago’s 2.4 million Roman Catholics was meant to be. Cardinal George was interviewed for the documentary film “We Believe”. The filmmaker, John Scheinfeld, wasn’t surprised to hear the Cardinal talk in general terms about the concept of believing in something with sheer faith, but he got much more than that. He got a Cardinal that has followed this team for sixty years and has given the subject matter a great deal of thought. Francis sees parallels between being a Christian, and being a Cubs fan. Scheinfeld describes the Cardinal’s take on it this way: “Being a Cubs fan is not dissimilar to eschatological faith, which is sort of ‘next year in Jerusalem.’ It’s sort of, ‘Jesus will be coming back at one point. We know it’s going to happen, but we don’t know when.'” Cardinal Francis George is absolutely right about that. “Wait til next year” is something Christians have been saying for way longer than a measly century or so. No wonder the Cardinal was a Cubs fan. He passed away in 2015.
~Greek George 1912 (Cubs 1941)
His real first name was Charles, but the Greek-American was called Greek his whole career. The backup catcher played one season for the Cubs in 1941. He also played for the Indians, Dodgers, and Athletics in his big league career.
~Dave Gerard 1936 (Cubs 1962)
Gerard was also a righthanded reliever, and he pitched for the Cubs during the 1962 season. In 39 appearances, he saved three games and won two more for one of the worst Cubs teams of all-time. That was his only season in the big leagues. He also pitched ten years in the minors.
~George Gerberman 1942 (Cubs 1962)
George got exactly one big league start, and it came for the Cubs on September 23rd. The location was the Polo Grounds, and the opponent was the worst team in big league history, the 1962 New York Mets. Gerberman lasted into the sixth inning and got a no-decision, although the Cubs eventually lost their 100th game of the season in the ninth. George walked five batters, but gave up only three hits. One of those hits was a home run by former Cub Frank Thomas. Gerberman’s only strikeout victim was future Cub Jim Hickman. George was only 20 years old at the time, but he never got another chance in the big leagues. He remained in the minors until 1968. (Photo: 1983 Fritch One Year Winners Baseball Card)
~Justin Germano 1982 (Cubs 2012)
The Cubs picked up Germano from the Red Sox organization during the summer of 2012 and he was given a chance to make the rotation. He started twelve games and went 2-10 with a 6.75 ERA. Needless to say, he didn’t make it. The Cubs let him go after the season and he since pitched for Toronto and Texas.
~Gonzalez Germen 1987 (Cubs 2015)
The Cubs picked up Germen when the Rangers waived him in January of 2015. They saw the Dominican reliever as a promising prospect, but after getting knocked around a few times, he was designated for assignment in early May. Germen had previously had a cup of coffee with the Mets in 2013 and 2014 and threw smoke. Early season injuries to Cubs relievers brought him to the big leagues with the Cubs in April. He was released in July and finished the season with the Colorado Rockies.
~Dick Gernert 1928 (Cubs 1960)
He was the nephew of fellow Cub Dim Dom Dallessandro. Gernert had a few good years with the Red Sox before coming to the Cubs. The outfielder/first baseman had 100 career homers on his resume when he arrived at Wrigley Field. Unfortunately for the Cubs, he didn’t hit any for the Cubs in 96 at bats, and was sold by August of 1960. His final career homer came the following year for the Tigers. Gernert later worked in the front office for the Mets and Rangers. (Photo: Topps 1960 Baseball Card)
~Jody Gerut 1977 (Cubs 2005)
The Cubs acquired the local boy (Willowbrook) from the Indians midseason. He was one of seven or eight players to get a shot at the leftfield job. One of those leftfielders (Jason Dubois) was the player traded to Cleveland. In his first 14 at bats, Jody got one hit (an .071 average), and was shipped off to Pittsburgh for another possibility–Matt Lawton. Jody also played for the Padres and Brewers before hanging it up after the 2010 season.
~Doc Gessler 1880 (Cubs 1906)
Everyone called him Doc, but the already nicknamed youngster was also called Brownie. The Cubs acquired him to be a backup outfielder/first baseman in 1906, and he became part of the all-time winningest team in history. He even got a few at bats in the 1906 World Series against the White Sox. Unfortunately for Doc, he was traded in 1907 in a bizarre revenge trade. Cubs player/manager Frank Chance was so ticked off at Reds pitcher Jack Harper for beaning him so many times, he acquired him just to punish him. Doc is the man he had to give up to get Harper. Harper was sent to the end of the bench with the Cubs, and was never allowed to pitch–effectively ending his career. Doc played five years in the big leagues for Boston and Pittsburgh.
~George Gibson 1880 (Cubs manager 1925)
As a player, George was a World Series winning catcher for the Pittsburgh Pirates, and his nickname was Moon. As a manager he was brought in to replace the highly volatile Rabbit Maranville on the Cubs. Gibson had a slightly different style than the hyperactive shortstop with a flask in his uniform, but it didn’t work much better with the 1925 Cubs. That team still managed to finish in last place for the fisrt time in franchise history. As we all know, it wasn’t the last time. Gibson went on to manage the Pirates.
~Robert Gibson 1869 (Colts 1890)
Don’t let anyone tell you that Bob Gibson never pitched for the Cubs. Robert Gibson did indeed pitch for Chicago. In 1890, the team was still known as the Colts, and the 20-year-old Gibson pitched a complete game on August 7th. It was his only appearance in a Chicago uniform.
~Norm Gigon 1938 (Cubs 1967)
Norm was a utility man for the Cubs in 1967. He played second base, third base, and outfield. On April 23, he hit the only home run of his big league career. It came off Pirates starting pitcher (and future Cub) Juan Pizarro in a 7-3 Cubs (Fergie Jenkins) win.
~Charlie Gilbert 1919 (Cubs 1941-1946)
It wasn’t Charlie’s fault that he was part of the trade that sent fan favorite Billy Herman to the Dodgers in 1941. But Cub fans never let him forget it. While Herman was leading the Dodgers to the World Series, Charlie was hitting a whopping .184. Charlie’s time with the Cubs was interrupted by his military service in World War II. He missed their entire pennant winning season of 1945.
~Johnny Gill 1905 (Cubs 1935-1936)
His teammates called him “Patcheye”. Johnny didn’t wear a patch over his eye, although he must have at least once, because the nickname “Patcheye” stuck with him throughout his career. He was a Minor-League lifer, playing more than 23 seasons. He was one of those players that would be considered a 4A player today; too good for the minors (lifetime average over .320, with nearly 300 homers), but just not quite good enough for the big leagues. Gill got a few cups of coffee in the show before coming to the Cubs in their pennant winning season of 1935 (in 1927 & 1928 with Cleveland, and 1931 & 1934 with the Senators), but he never had more than 69 at bats in a season. He got a whopping three at bats in 1935 for the Cubs. Patcheye stayed with the team as a backup outfielder in 1936 (backing up Augie Galan, Frank Demaree, Ethan Allen) and got the longest look of his big league career that season. He made the most of it, hitting 7 homers in only 174 at bats. Unfortunately for Gill, that turned out to be the swan song of his major league career. Johnny Gill didn’t even make it back to the bigs during the war era, though he was playing in the minors that whole time (in Portland). He retired as a player (from the minors) after the 1947 season, and then managed the minor league team in his hometown of Nashville Tennessee.
~Cole Gillespie 1984 (Cubs 2013)
The Cubs took a flier on this outfielder after he was waived by the Giants. He appeared in 25 games, but didn’t really show the Cubs that he was worth keeping on the roster. After the season he was given his release. He has since played for Toronto and Seattle.
~Paul Gillespie 1920 (Cubs 1942-1945)
He was a big strong boy, just off a two year stint in the Coast Guard, when he rejoined the Cubs as their only left-handed hitting catcher in 1944. He was a real contributor during their pennant winning season of 1945. At 6’3″, 195 pounds, Paul was an imposing figure in the batter’s box. He hit .288 and knocked in 25 runs in 75 games, and even got a shot at playing in the World Series (he went 0 for 6), but he never played in the big leagues again.
~Joe Girardi 1964 (1989-1992, 2000-2002)
Girardi was a rookie catcher on the Cubs team that suprised everyone and won their division in 1989. Even in his younger days he was seen as a calm force on the team. The Northwestern Grad (and Peoria native) seemed to really enjoy playing in his home state. But the Cubs left him unprotected in the 1993 expansion draft, and Joe was drafted by the Rockies. He didn’t really make a name for himself, however, until he joined the Yankees in 1996. Girardi was the starting catcher of the team that won the World Series in 1996 and in 1998, and backed up Jorge Posada for the 1999 World Series champs. The following year Joe returned to the Cubs, and made his first all-star team. All of the players looked up to him, and he became the spokesperson for a team that featured the likes of Sammy Sosa. When Darryl Kile of the Cardinals died tragically in 2002 (the night before a Cubs-Cards game), it was Joe who stepped to the microphone to pay tribute to Kile in front of the Wrigley Field crowd. Girardi has since become a big league manager and won another World Series title in that role with the Yankees in 2009. (Photo: 1990 Topps Baseball Card)
~Dave Giusti 1939 (Cubs 1977)
Giusti won 100 games and saved 145 more in his outstanding career, including 30 in his all-star 1971 season, when he led the Pirates to the World Series. By the time he came to the Cubs, however, he was a whisper of what he once was. He did get one save in 20 appearances, but his ERA was 2 1/2 runs higher than his career average. It was the last gasp of his big league career.
~Lucky Glade 1876 (Orphans 1902)
Glade had one start for the Cubs (then known as the Orphans) in 1902, and gave up eight runs in eight innings and took the loss. But he got his nickname “Lucky” when he was with the St. Louis Browns in 1905. That year he made 32 starts and won only six of them. His final record that season was 6-25, despite having an ERA of only 2.81. Lucky (photo) never worried about it too much. He was a wealthy man from a wealthy family and he only played when he felt like it.
~Doug Glanville 1970 (Cubs 1996-1997, 2003)
Glanville was a first round draft choice by the Cubs, and had a very respectable nine-year big league career. In his rookie season with the Cubs, he hit .300 and stole 19 bases. The Cubs took a big chance by trading him after the season to Phillies for Mickey Morandini. This is one of those trades that worked out for both teams. Morandini was a key member of the Cubs 1998 playoff team, while Glanville starred for the Phillies. He was an outstanding outfielder, and in 1999 he hit .325 and stole 34 bases. Towards the end of his career, Glanville was reaquired by Chicago for the strech run of their 2003 playoff season. He had a few key hits, including a pinch hit RBI triple in the 2003 NLCS. He is now a broadcaster on ESPN television, and a writer. He has written for the New York Times and the Atlantic, and is the author of “The Game From Where I Stand” (2010).
~Jim Gleeson 1912 (Cubs 1939-1940)
The Cubs were reigning NL Champs when Gleeson joined the team. His teammates nicknamed him “Gee Gee”. He got quite a bit of playing time in the outfield during his time in Chicago, including his best season in the big leagues, 1940. That year he was the team’s starting centerfielder and hit over .300. The Cubs traded him after the season and he ended his playing career in Cincinnati. He remained in baseball, however. Gee-Gee coached and scouted for several teams including the Yankees, and was the first base coach for the Yanks when they won the 1964 World Series.
~Bob Glenalvin 1867 (White Stockings 1890-1893)
He was the backup second baseman for the Cubs (then known as the White Stockings) in two different seasons, 1890 and 1893. In between those two years he played minor league ball in Los Angeles.
~Ed Glenn 1875 (Orphans 1902)
Glenn played in two games for the Cubs (then known as the Orphans) as a shortstop in June of 1902. He only reached base once (on a walk). IT was last shot at the big leagues.
~John Glenn 1850 (White Stockings 1876-1877)
Glenn was with the Cubs (then known as the White Stockings) before they joined the National League, and for the first two seasons in the NL. He was an outfielder/first baseman. Glenn hit zero homers in four seasons in Chicago. In 1888, just 11 seasons after he stopped playing big league baseball, Glenn died at the age of 38.
~Ross Gload 1976 (Cubs 2000)
Ross was a power hitting 1B/OF the Cubs acquired from the Marlins for Henry Rodriguez. He only got one chance to show his power in the big leagues for the Cubs, and the sample size was probably a little too small. In just over 30 at bats, he managed only one home run. The Rockies got him from the Cubs the following year, but Gload didn’t really put it together until he joined the White Sox. In 2005 he was part of that White Sox championship team. Gload eventually put together a very respectable 10-year big league career, which also included two playoff appearances for the Phillies (in 2010 & 2011)
~Al Glossop 1914 (Cubs 1946)
Al was a backup infielder for the Phillies, Dodgers, Giants, and Boston before coming to the Cubs in 1946. He got his only shot at starting in the big leagues during the war year of 1942. Unfortunately for Glossup, he hit only .225 for the Phillies that year and never got another chance. His stint with the Cubs was his final gasp in the big leagues. In fourteen plate appearances as a Cub, he didn’t get a single hit.
~John Goetz 1937 (Cubs 1960)
The 22-year-old broke camp with the Cubs in April of 1960, but didn’t last long. By May he was back in the minors. Those four appearances he had for the Cubs in 1960 were the only ones of his career. He spent 11 seasons in the minor leagues.
~Fred Goldsmith 1856 (White Stockings 1880-1884)
Goldsmith was a great pitcher for the Cubs (then known as the White Stockings) during their early National League dynasty. He won 20 or more games four years in a row. Many baseball historians credit Fred as the inventor of the curveball. He is the first known person to have given a public demonstration of it (way back in 1870), and when he died, several baseball broadcasters and writers eulogized him as the “father of the curveball”. Unfortunately for Goldsmith’s legacy, another man was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame for that very thing–Goldsmith’s old rival Candy Cummings.
~Walt Golvin 1894 (Cubs 1922)
He got his cup of coffee with the Cubs early in the 1922 season as a 28-year-old rookie. The first baseman got two at bats and didn’t reach base either time. He played another three years in the minors after that, and retired for good at the age of 31.
~Leo Gomez 1966 (Cubs 1996)
Leo was the starting third baseman for the Cubs in 1996. He hit 17 homers, and played a respectable third base, but he swang and missed (94 strikeouts) more often than he swang and hit (86 hits). After the season the Cubs let him go.
~Preston Gomez 1923 (Cubs Manager 1980)
Two days before Pope John Paul II landed in Chicago in 1979, the Cubs announced the name of their new manager: Preston Gomez. Gomez’ track record included one of the worst winning percentages in baseball history (.392). He had managed for the Padres and the Astros and was a colossal failure both times. Needless to say the same thing happened with the Cubs. He didn’t make it through the entire 1980 season before he was fired. The Cubs were 39-51 at the time.
~Alberto Gonzalez 1983 (Cubs 2013)
Alberto began the 2013 season with the Cubs as a backup infielder, but was traded to the Yankees in May. He’s currently in the San Diego Padres organization.
~Alex Gonzalez 1973 (Cubs 2002-2004)
Gonzalez was the starting shortstop with the Cubs during his years in Chicago and had more than his share of big games. His game winning homers were the stuff of legend. But despite the good moments, he’ll always be remembered for muffing an easy double-play ball immediately after the infamous Steve Bartman moment in the 2003 playoffs. If he had made that play, the Cubs almost certainly would have made it to the 2003 World Series. In fairness to Gonzalez, they might not have even been in that spot if not for his hitting heroics. In that NLCS series he hit three homers and drove in seven runs. (Photo: Topps 2003 Heritage Baseball Card)
~Geremi Gonzalez 1975 (Cubs 1997-1998)
He won 11 games for the Cubs as a rookie and later pitched for the Rays, Red Sox, Mets and Brewers. He was hit by lightning and killed in 2008 at the age of 33.
~Luis Gonzalez 1967 (Cubs 1995-1996)
Luis Gonzalez obviously got his nickname from his last name, because he already had it when he was on the Cubs, and he obviously didn’t hit like a Gonzo in Chicago (22 home runs in his 1 ½ years with the team). It’s not as if Gonzo’s Cubs career was a total flop, however. He was acquired mid-season in 1995 (along with catcher Scott Servais), and helped lead the team to a surprising third place finish that strike-shortened season. In 1996, he had a very solid season (15 HR, 79 RBI, .271 Ave), but because he was a corner outfielder, the Cubs felt they needed more power out of that position and allowed him to leave via free agency. Ironically, Gonzo discovered his power stroke very soon after leaving Chicago. He hit 23 HRs for the Tigers in 1998, and then really blossomed in 2001, when he 57 home runs and finished 3rd in the MVP voting. He also got the game winning hit in Game 7 of the World Series that year. Still, Gonzo enjoyed his time in Chicago immensely. One of his most treasured possessions is a ball thrown to him before he filed for free agency in 1997, signed by Wrigley Field’s bleachers bums.
~Mike Gonzalez 1890 (Cubs 1925-1929)
The Cuban catcher was a trailblazer in baseball. He was the first Latin-American to ever play for the Cubs. The 35-year-old veteran provided some stability backing up young stud catcher Gabby Hartnett. Mike (real name Miguel) got his only World Series at bat with the Cubs in 1929. Before coming to the Cubs, he also caught for the Braves, Reds, Cardinals, and Giants. He played in the big leagues for twenty years and coached and scouted many more after his playing career ended. He is said to have coined the term “Good field, no hit” when he was a scout.
~Raul Gonzalez 1973 (Cubs 2000)
The Puerto Rican outfielder made his big league debut in a Cubs uniform in May of 2000, but he only got two at-bats with the Cubs and struck out both times. He later played for the Reds, Mets, and Indians.
~Wilbur Good 1885 (Cubs 1911-1915)
Wilbur came to the Cubs in the trade that sent popular catcher Johnny Kling to Boston. His nickname was “Lefty” and he played for the Cubs in the years after their dynasty (1906-1910) and before their move to Wrigley Field (1916). Good was a backup outfielder his first few years in Chicago (he hit the first pinch hit HR in Cubs history in 1913), before being given the fulltime rightfield job in 1914. Wilbur responded by stealing more than 30 bases and hitting .272. Those numbers went down the following year, and when the Cubs moved across town to Wrigley Field (then known as Weeghman Park), Wilbur was not invited to join them. He was sold to the Phillies. Good holds the distinction of being the very last player to hit a homer at West Side Grounds. It came on September 29, 1915 in a 5-4 victory over the Braves. (Photo: 1909 Tobacco Card)
~Ival Goodman 1908 (Cubs 1943-1944)
He was known as “Goodie” or “Ol’ Mate”, and he was a two-time all-star who hit 30 homers one season for the Reds. By the time he was roaming the Wrigley Field outfield during the war, Goodie was no longer that player. He was strictly a fourth outfielder for the Cubs. His power was completely gone. In two full seasons, he hit four homers.
~Steve Goodman 1948 (Cubs fan 1948-1984)
Steve Goodman was born on the north side of Chicago. His family later relocated to the northwestern suburbs (Steve attended Maine East in Park Ridge), so it was only natural that Goodman became a Cubs fan. His music career began the same year his beloved Cubs had one of their most memorable seasons, 1969, but his disappointment with the way that season ended was put into perspective by much more dire news he received that summer. He was diagnosed with leukemia. That was something he lived with throughout his music career. He was suffering from leukemia when he wrote “City of New Orleans” for Arlo Guthrie, which became a top 20 hit. And he knew his time left on this earth was limited when he penned a song that has become beloved by Cubs fan everywhere: “A Dying Cub Fan’s Last Request.” He also wrote the song “Go Cubs Go”, which became the Cubs theme song in 1984. He died on September 20th of that year, and went to his grave believing that the Cubs really were going to win the World Series.
~Curtis Goodwin 1972 (Cubs 1999)
Curtis was with the Cubs the first few months of the 1999 season. The speedy centerfielder hit .242 in 175 plate appearances, but was put on waivers in August of that year. He previously had two good 20+ stolen base seasons with the Orioles and the Reds. 1999 was his last season in the big leagues.
~Tom Goodwin (Cubs 2003-2004)
Goodwin a speedster for the Dodgers, Royals, Rockies, Rangers, and Giants before joining the Cubs at age 34. His speed wasn’t quite what it once was, but Goodwin was nevertheless an important outfield reserve during the division winning 2003 season. He stole 24 of 369 career stolen bases with the Cubs. When the Cubs released him after the 2004 season, his big league career was over.
~Mike Gordon 1953 (Cubs 1977-1978)
Gordon came up with the Cubs a few times as an emergency catcher, but he only got into twelve games over two seasons. Gordon came up to bat 35 times and only got two hits.
~Tom Gordon 1967 (Cubs 2001-2002)
Flash, as he was known, had a stellar big-league career as a starter and a reliever. He was predominantly a starter for the Royals at the beginning of his career, including six seasons with double-digit wins. The Red Sox converted him into a closer and he responded with an all-star season and a league-leading 46 saves. Unfortunately, Gordon blew out his arm. When the Cubs acquired him as a free agent, it had been more than a year since he pitched. He repeated the Boston experience. His first year with the Cubs, Gordon was excellent. He saved 27 games. The following year he hurt his arm again. When the Cubs traded him to the Astros they thought he was pretty much finished. He wasn’t. Flash pitched another six seasons for the White Sox, Yankees, Phillies, and Diamondbacks. His son Dee is an all-star second baseman.
~George Gore 1854 (White Stockings 1879-1886)
Gore had one of the greatest nicknames of all-times; they called him Piano Legs. He was the centerfielder for the Cubs (then known as the White Stockings) during the team’s longest period of excellence. During Gore’s eight seasons, the team won the championship four times, including three years in a row (1880-1882). Piano Legs won a batting title (1880), hit over .300 six times, led the league in runs twice (1881-1882), and walks three times (’82, ’84, ’86). But George was also known as a big drinker and hellraiser off the field, and ran into constant conflict with team manager/captain Cap Anson. After the 1886 season, when some of the “drunks” on the team didn’t play up to their abilities in the World Series against St. Louis, Gore was shipped off to New York. (The others soon followed) In Anson’s book (which came out in 1900) he said that he saw Gore years later, and that his life had been ruined by “wine and women.”
~Hank Gornicki 1911 (Cubs 1941)
Hank was acquired from the Cardinals. The Cubs pitched him in one game in 1941, didn’t like what they saw, voided the deal, and sent him back to the Cardinals. The Pirates later gave him a longer shot in the big leagues, but his stint with that team was interrupted by his service in the war.
~Johnny Goryl 1933 (Cubs 1957-1959)
Johnny was a backup infielder (2B,3B) for the Cubs in the late 50s. He got the most playing time in the 1958 season, when he hit four homers and hit .242 in over 200 at bats. He later also played for the Minnesota Twins.
~Tom Gorzelanny 1982 (Cubs 2009-2010)
The homegrown pitcher (Marist High School) was acquired by the Cubs in the summer of 2009 when their starting rotation suffered a few injuries. He had pitched for the Pirates the previous 4 1/2 seasons, and had been a bit of a Cubs-killer. When he put on the Cubs uniform he had a few good outings, but never approached the success he had with Pittsburgh. The Cubs traded him to the Washington Nationals after the 2010 season. (PHoto: 2010 Topps Baseball Card)
~Goose Gossage 1951 (Cubs 1988)
He was so universally referred to by his nickname when he arrived in Chicago in 1988, even the baseball card makers (in this case Fleer) didn’t bother using his real first name anymore. (It was Rich.) Unfortunately for the Cubs, Rich got richer pitching for the Cubs only after his best days were behind him. He was signed to be the closer, but he didn’t quite have the stuff needed for the role. He managed only 13 saves (including the 300th of his career) in what turned out to be his last season as a full-time closer. The Cubs released him before the 1989 season. In 2008, Goose Gossage was inducted into baseball’s Hall of Fame. (Photo: 1989 Fleer Baseball Card)
~Billy Grabarkewitz 1946 (Cubs 1974)
By the time the Cubs acquired the former all-star second baseman in 1974, he was strictly a backup. He played for the Cubs part of the 1974 season.
~John Grabow 1978 (Cubs 2009-2011)
Grabow was a very effective lefthanded reliever with the Pirates for several seasons, so the Cubs went out and got him via trade (along with Tom Gorzelany). As soon as he arrived in Chicago, however, Grabow started to get knocked around pretty well. He developed arm problems, and missed a good chunk of the 2010 season. His last year in the big leagues was with the Cubs in 2011. In retrospect, that wasn’t a very good trade for the Cubs. They sent a few prospects to Pittsburgh in that deal, including future all-star Josh Harrison.
~Earl Grace 1907 (Cubs 1929-1931)
Earl was a catcher who got a cup of coffee with the Cubs in two different seasons–1929 and 1931. He was traded to the Pirates early in 1931 for fellow backup catcher Rollie Hemsley. Earl’s best season was 1932 when he hit eight homers for the Pirates. Grace remained in the big leagues until 1937.
~Mark Grace 1964 (Cubs 1988-2000)
They called him Amazing Grace, after the song, and because of his amazing glove work around first base. Mark Grace anchored first for the Cubs for more than a decade and became one of Wrigley Field’s fan favorites. He won four gold gloves, hit .300 nine times, led the league in doubles, and at-bats per strikeout, and had more hits than any other player in the 1990s. He also saved his best for the most important moments. In the 1989 NLCS vs. the Giants, Grace was on fire, hitting .647 and driving in eight runs. He also became a World Series champion…although sadly, after he left the Cubs. In the 2001 World Series, Grace hit a home run for the Diamondbacks, and later had a key at bat in the ninth inning of the clinching game 7 in Arizona. After his playing career ended, he made a seemless transition to the broadcasting business. Unfortunately for Mark, that career ended when he was arrested and convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol.
~Peaches Graham 1877 (Cubs 1903,1911)
Peaches had two different stints with the Cubs. The first one was ever so brief. He pitched in one game in 1903, and got knocked around pretty well (nine hits, six runs). After spending five years in the minors, he re-emerged in the big leagues as a catcher in Boston. He had three-plus productive seasons there with the Braves before the Cubs re-aquired him for Johnny Kling in June of 1911. Peaches was the main backup catcher (to Jimmy Archer) the rest of the season. His son Jack later played in the big leagues too (for the Dodgers, Giants, and Browns).
~Alex Grammas 1926 (Cubs 1962-1963)
Grammas was a big league infielder for ten years, the last year and half of which were with the Cubs. He came to the Cubs (along with Don Landrum) from the Cardinals in the midst of the College of Coaches fiasco. The veteran glove man backed up young Cubs studs Ken Hubbs, Andre Rodgers, and Ron Santo. (PHOTO: Topps 1963 Baseball Card)
~Hank Grampp 1903 (Cubs 1927-1929)
Grampp had a really unusual big league career. He was on the team’s big league roster for three years and literally pitched every single day–but only because the team used him as their daily batting practice pitcher. Over those three seasons he appeared in only three big league games, and was rocked pretty badly. But what would you expect? He had already thrown thousands of innings. Grampp wore his Cubs uniform for the final time during the 1929 World Series. He didn’t appear in any of those games, but he was there throwing batting practice. Years later he was hired by the team as a scout.
~Tom Grant 1957 (Cubs 1983)
Grant spent the entirety of his very brief big league career with the Cubs. The outfielder batted 20 times and got 3 hits. One of them was a double. In the last game of the 1983 season, in his last at-bat in the big leagues, Grant knocked in both of his career RBI. The Cubs still lost 9-6.
~George Grantham 1900 (Cubs 1923-1924)
In his two years as the Cubs starting 2B (1923, 1924), George led the league in strikeouts both years. He also led the league in being caught stealing. The Cubs traded him to the Pirates in the deal that brought Charlie Grimm to Chicago. Grantham had a good run in Pittsburgh. In his first season there he helped lead the team to a World Series title. He played with Pittsburgh for seven seasons before ending his career with the Reds and Giants.
~Joe Graves 1906 (Cubs 1926)
Joe played exactly one day in the big leagues, and it was for the Cubs on September 26, 1926, the last day of the season. He played third base in the first game of a double header against Brooklyn and got one at bat against Dazzy Vance (he didn’t get on base). He started the second game of the double header and went 0 for 4. The Cubs lost both games.
~Jeff Gray 1981 (Cubs 2010)
The Cubs acquired him from the A’s in the trade that sent Jake Fox and Aaron Miles to the A’s. Gray appeared in 7 games for the Cubs in middle relief and didn’t fare well. He allowed 17 baserunners in only nine innings pitched. He was released after the season. Gray later pitched for the White Sox, Mariners, and Twins.
~Dallas Green 1934 (Cubs GM 1982-1987)
Dallas Green may have been a pretty good judge of talent (he brought Maddux, Palmeiro, Sandberg, Dawson, Grace, Smith, Moyer, Dunston, Suttcliffe, et al to the team), and he may have been gotten the Cubs as close to the World Series as anyone else has, but he was also known for his prickly personality—not exactly the kind of personality you look for in a general manager. As a matter of fact, he had a ruthless streak. When he fired Billy Connors, a former Cubs pitcher and a widely respected pitching coach (after the 1986 season), he did it while Connors was in the hospital recovering from hip replacement surgery. According to the book “Cubs Journal”, Green pulled up to the hospital, left the car running, went up to Connors’ room and fired him, and then came back down to his car and drove away. Dallas Green resigned just over a year later, on October 29, 1987. He might have been difficult to deal with, but there’s no question that Green was one of the best general managers in Cubs history. In his post baseball life, Dallas suffered an unspeakable tragedy. His granddaughter was one of the victims in the shooting spree that also injured congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords.
~Danny Green 1876 (Orphans 1898-1902)
Green was a good hitting outfielder who always seemed to find a way to get on base. His lifetime on-base percentage was .359. After hitting .313 and stealing 31 bases for the 1902 Cubs (then known as the Orphans), he jumped to the upstart American League team across town–the White Sox. His last year in the big leagues was 1905–the year before the Cubs-White Sox World Series.
Adam Greenberg 1981 (Cubs 2005)
His Cubs career was undeniably unique. On July 9, 2005, the Chicago Cubs called him up to the big leagues. They were in Miami facing the Florida Marlins. Greenberg’s entire family flew down to Florida from Connecticut to watch his first major league series. They could barely contain their excitement in the 7th inning of the game, when Adam was called on to pinch hit for Cubs pitcher Will Ohman. The pitcher was Valerio De Los Santos, a left-hander. “I get in the box,” Greenberg remembers, “and all of a sudden he throws it, and I’m thinking, ‘Am I swinging?’ and all of a sudden, bam.” Here’s the way New York Times reporter Ira Berkow described the only pitch of Greenberg’s major league career: “No one imagined that the very first pitch the left-handed Greenberg faced in the major leagues would be a fastball that would crack him squarely in the head, smashing against his helmet and the part of his neck just under his right ear, making a sound so loud that it stunned the crowd of almost 23,000. His parents, his sister and two brothers had come to Dolphins Stadium from Guilford, Conn., near New Haven. His grandfather was watching at home on television. His mother, Wendy Greenberg, said she was horrified when she saw her son drop to the ground as Cubs Manager Dusty Baker and the trainer rushed to the plate.” Greenberg had to be removed from the game and was placed on the disabled list after the game. He never returned to the Cubs, and never returned to the majors until the Marlins gave him one at bat at the end of the 2012 season as a publicity stunt. He struck out. (Photo: 2002 Upper Deck Future Gems Baseball Card)
~Willie Greene 1971 (Cubs 2000)
Greene was also a former first round pick. He was signed as a free agent after having a couple of pretty good power years as the third baseman for the Reds. Willie’s issue was his inability to make contact. He did slug ten homers for the 2000 Cubs, but he also hit only .201. It was the last stop of his big league career.
~Jimmy Greenfield (Cubs author/blogger/tweeter)
Greenfield is the author of the book “100 Things Cubs Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die”, but his day job is Community Manager of ChicagoNow–the blog network for the Chicago Tribune. In that role, he oversees several Cubs blogs. He also maintains the Twitter feed @cubsnohitstreak, which keeps track of how many days it’s been since the Cubs were no hit (they hadn’t been since September 9, 1965–by Sandy Koufax). At the end of the 2014 season, that streak stood at 7825 games. The streak ended in July of 2015 when Cole Hammels of the Phillies no hit the Cubs at Wrigley Field.
~Kevin Gregg 1976 (Cubs 2009, 2013)
Gregg was signed as a free agent by the Cubs in two different seasons to help stablize the back end of the bullpen. In 2009 he was brought in to replace Kerry Wood, and in 2013 he was brought in to replace Carlos Marmol. And though he saved 56 games for the Cubs in those two seasons, and his numbers were respectable, he isn’t remembered by Cub fans as a great closer. Those 19 homers he gave up always seemed to happen at the worst possible times.
~Lee Gregory 1938 (Cubs 1964)
The Cubs acquired Gregory just before the 1964 season, and he did get a cup of coffee in the big leagues that season. He pitched in eleven games, and registered a 3.50 ERA. He had a horrendous season in the minors the next year (1-9, 5.61 ERA), however, and the Cubs released him.
~Ben Grieve 1976 (Cubs 2004-2005)
Grieve is the son of a big-leaguer–his father Tom played for the Texas Rangers. Ben got a great start to his own baseball career when he won the Rookie of the Year award in 1998 with the Oakland A’s, but by the time he came to the Cubs he was a fourth outfielder. He played sparingly for the Cubs in that role. Chicago was the last stop in his big league career.
~Hank Griffin 1886 (Cubs 1911)
Pepper Griffin, as he was known, pitched in exactly one game for the Cubs in 1911. Actually he only pitched one inning. To say it didn’t go well is probably a kind way of saying it. He walked three men and gave up a homer. He later had a cup of coffee with the Boston Braves and it didn’t go much better there.
~Mike Griffin 1957 (Cubs 1981)
Griffin was a spot starter for the truly awful 1981 Cubs. He started nine games for them during that strike shortened season, and went 2-5, with a 4.50 ERA. He also pitched for the Yankees, Padres, Orioles, and Reds.
~Clark Griffith 1869 (1893-1900)
They called him the Old Fox. When he was with the Cubs (then known as the White Stockings), he wasn’t old yet, and he wasn’t a fox, but he did have his best years wearing the uniform of Chicago’s National League ballclub. Clark Griffith joined what was to become known as the Cubs the same year as the Columbian Exposition. The Old Fox’s career was just beginning, but starting in 1894 he won 20 games for the Cubs six years in a row. He went on to manage in the majors for twenty years, including twelve years as a player/manager (although not for the Cubs). He led the White Sox to the American League pennant in 1901, and spent the last nine years of his career managing the Washington Senators. Griffith became the owner of the Senators in 1920, and ran the club until his death in 1955. The highlight of those years was probably the 1924 World Series, won by the Senators over the New York Giants. (President Calvin Coolidge attended that series.) The stadium in Washington was named after him, and he was elected into the Hall of Fame in 1946. His son Calvin Griffith, took over the team after his father’s death and moved them to Minnesota in 1961, where they still play today as the Minnesota Twins.
~Coleman Griffith 1893 (Cubs psychologist–1938)
Griffith was a psychology professor at the University of Illinois (Urbana-Champaign). In 1938 Griffith was asked by PK Wrigley to do a complete psychological analysis of the Cubs for a project he called “Experimental Laboratories of the Chicago National League Ball Club.” Naturally, his first target was manager Charlie Grimm, a man that was so much a part of the fabric of the Chicago Cubs that he would have his ashes spread on Wrigley Field after this death. There was no way of knowing that this baseball lifer wouldn’t respond well to being told what to do by a “headshrinker” from Urbana, but shockingly, even “Jolly Cholly” Grimm wasn’t exactly receptive. When Grimm was replaced in July by player Gabby Hartnett, a man later declared as the winner of the “Drizzlepus Derby” as grumpiest manager in baseball by one Chicago paper, Griffith could have folded up his tent and quit, but he didn’t. He wrote a paper explaining “pepper” to the future Hall of Famer Hartnett. He pointed out in another paper that there was no such thing as “instinct.” Somehow, and this is also going to be a big shock, his information was not exactly embraced by the players. The 1938 Cubs were a veteran team (average age: nearly 30), and with future Hall of Famers like Dizzy Dean and Tony Lazzeri on the roster, they were not exactly the prototypical audience for experimental psychological research. Griffith also didn’t help his cause with his analysis of the players. For instance, he used a very complex statistical model to show that Phil Cavaretta should be traded because he would never amount to anything. People made fun of Wrigley for using Griffith that year, but on the other hand, the Cubs did go to the World Series in 1938. Wrigley really wanted him to come back full-time for the 1939 season, but Griffith wanted to spend more time with his family in Urbana.
Griffith inspired this famous scene from the film “The Natural”…
~Frank Griffith 1872 (Colts 1892)
If you want to travel back in time to see Griffith pitch for the Cubs (then known as the Colts), set the wayback machine for August 13, 1892. That was his only appearance for the team. The Northwestern University product started and was knocked out of the game after only four innings. He gave up six walks and three hits (including a homer) and finished with an ERA of 11.25.
~Tommy Griffith 1889 (Cubs 1925)
Griffith played 13 seasons in the big leagues, the last of which was with the Cubs. The rightfielder hit .285. When the season ended, Griffith hung up his spikes for good.
~Denver Grigsby 1901 (Cubs 1923-1925)
Grigsby’s best season was 1924 when he was the team’s starting leftfielder. He hit .299 and played a very solid left field–leading the league in fielding percentage, assists, and double plays. But Denver didn’t really have the power to play a corner outfield position, and Cliff Heathcote was manning centerfield, so he went back to the bench in 1925. It was his last season in the big leagues. His name (Denver), by the way, was not a nickname. It was his given name.
~Burleigh Grimes 1893 (Cubs 1932-1933)
Grimes never shaved on days he pitched, because the slippery elm he chewed to increase saliva irritated his skin, so he always had stubble on his face when he took the mound. That led to his nickname, Ol’ Stubblebeard. He wasn’t just known for his stubble, he was also known as one of the toughest competitors to ever take the mound. His scowl would have made Randy Johnson’s look like a smiley face, and when it was time to give someone an intentional walk, he was known to throw four pitches near the batter’s head. Grimes is a Hall of Famer, but certainly not for his one and half years with the Cubs (1932-33). He was a five-time 20-game winner, but only 9-17 for the Cubs. Ol’ Stubblebeard was the last legal spitball pitcher in the majors. When he retired, so did that pitch. (Wink, wink. Right, Gaylord Perry?)
A rare audio interview of Burleigh when he was an old man…
~Ray Grimes 1893 (Cubs 1922-1925)
Ray Grimes was an instant phenom for the Cubs when he joined them for his rookie season of 1922. He was an absolute RBI machine, one of the great clutch hitters of his era. During that season he set a record that still stands today when he got an RBI in seventeen consecutive games. During that streak he was so “in the zone” that he was unconscious. In 66 at bats, he had 28 hits, including eight doubles, two triples, three homers, and 27 RBI. The Cubs thought they had a first baseman that would hold down the position for a decade. The Sporting News said: “He’s about the best looking first sacker to wear a Cubs uniform since Frank Chance.” Unfortunately for Ray and the Cubs, his sophomore season was an entirely different experience. In May of 1923, he badly dislocated his back sliding into second base; a very serious injury. Instead of taking the time to recuperate, he rushed back onto the field a few weeks later, and re-injured himself. That put him out for two months. It was an injury he couldn’t quite shake. The following season he started off well too, but was reinjured in June, and by July 8th of the following year, the Cubs decided they didn’t need him anymore. By then they had another first baseman (Harry Cotter). Ray Grimes–their great hope of only a few years earlier–was released. In his four seasons in Chicago he hit .321, .354, .329, and .299. He re-surfaced briefly in 1926 on the Phillies, and could still hit (.297), but his back simply wouldn’t allow him to play on a regular basis. Ray Grimes became another “what could have been” story in a long line of them for the Chicago Cubs.
~Charlie Grimm 1898 (Cubs player 1925-1936, Cubs manager 1932-1938, 1944-1949, 1960)
They called Charlie Grimm “Jolly Cholly” because he was a fun-loving guy who always seemed to be happy during his 20 seasons as a player. He played the banjo to loosen up the team on long train rides, and was a constant chatterbox on the field. He was so beloved by his teammates that Phillip K. Wrigley named him to manage the team while he was still a player (Charlie played first base). His laid back and tolerant approach seemed to coax great performances from mediocre teammates, and legendary performances from great players. Taking over the team from the despised disciplinarian Rogers Hornsby in 1932, Charlie led the team to the pennant that season. He was also the manager of the 1935 pennant winners and the last Chicago team to win the National League–the 1945 Cubs. He was such an important part of Cubs lore that his wife was allowed to spread his ashes in Wrigley when he died in 1983. (Photo: 1933 Goudy Baseball Card)
~Justin Grimm 1988 (Cubs 2013-present)
Grimm was acquired in the trade that sent Matt Garza to the Texas Rangers. It turned out to be a great trade for the Cubs because they also got 3B Mike Olt, RP Neil Ramirez, and highly regarded prospect C.J. Edwards in the deal. Grimm has been a solid reliever for the Cubs after having a rougher go of it as a starter for Texas. He also helps out the Cubs by being the official designated “Catcher of the First Pitch”.
~Greg Gross 1952 (Cubs 1977-1978)
He was a slap-hitting outfielder (zero home runs in about 1500 at-bats) for the Astros (in their rainbow pajama uniform era) when the Cubs acquired him before the 1977 season. The Cubs made a run at the division title before fading at the end of the year, and Gross was a key member of that team as a fourth outfielder. He hit .322 in over 200 at bats. He even discovered a semi-power stroke, hitting six of his career home runs (he only hit 7 in 17 big league seasons) in a Cubs uniform. (Photo: 1977 Topps Baseball Card)
~Ernie Groth 1884 (Cubs 1904)
The 19-year-old Groth pitched in three games for the Cubs in 1904. He started (and completed) two of those game, and saved the third one, and then never pitched in the big leagues again. The Wisconsin boy was nicknamed “Dango”.
~Mark Grudzielanek 1970 (Cubs 2003-2004)
Mark was an all-star early in his career with the Expos and a Gold Glover at second base for the Royals late in his career, but he also made several other big league stops along the way, including Los Angeles, St. Louis, Cleveland, and of course, the Cubs. He was acquired in an excellent trade from the Dodgers that also brought Eric Karros to the team in exchange for Cubs albatross Todd Hundley. The two ex-Dodgers were key members of the Cubs team that won the division in 2003. Grudzielanek had one of the best seasons of his career, hitting .314 and providing veteran leadership to a team that came only five outs away from the World Series. The following season he got hurt, and left in free agency before the 2005 season. (Photo: Topps 2004 Baseball Card)
~Marv Gudat 1903 (Cubs 1932)
Marv was a backup outfielder/first baseman for the pennant winning 1932 Cubs. He appeared in sixty games that year, and was part of the postseason roster. Gudat got two at bats in the 1932 World Series against the Yankees. His last big league at bat was a pop out to shortstop in Game 3. After the series he went out west and played another 13 seasons in the minors.
~Matt Guerrier 1978 (Cubs 2013)
The Cubs acquired the veteran reliever from the Dodgers in 2013 (for Carlos Marmol), and he pitched quite well for them out of the bullpen. In fifteen appearances, his ERA was only 2.13. But just when he was becoming a key part of the bullpen, Matt hurt his arm, ending his season, and his stint with the Cubs. In his eleven year big league career he also pitched for the Twins.
~Bryant Gumbel 1948 (Cubs fan 1948-present)
Bryant Gumbel grew up in Hyde Park on Chicago’s south side, but always rooted for the north side boys in blue. His brother Greg Gumbel described what it was like when he and Bryant were growing up. He told People Magazine that he and Bryant would “grab our gloves, stand in front of a full-length mirror, wind up, pitch, and announce entire imaginary games, taking turns every half inning.” Greg was the White Sox. Bryant was the Cubs. Bryant Gumbel has been interviewed about his Cubs love numerous times over the years, including extensive interviews in the films “The Babe and the Billy Goat: Reverse the Curse” (2003), and “Wait ‘Til Next Year: The Saga of the Chicago Cubs” (2006). How does he describe the experience of rooting for the Cubs? “Being a Cubs fan is like being in limbo, with paradise always a day away.”
AUDIO: Gumbel talking Cubs…
~Ad Gumbert 1868 (White Stockings 1888-1889, 1991-1992)
Gumbert was a starting pitcher, and a fairly good one for his time. In his fourth and final season with the Cubs he won 22 games, but he also gave up a whopping 399 hits and walked over a hundred men in 382 innings. He later also pitched for Pittsburgh, Brooklyn, and Philadelphia.
~Dave Gumpert 1958 (Cubs 1985-1986)
Gumpert had his best season as a pro with the Cubs in 1986. He appeared in 38 games out of the bullpen, won two games and saved two. The following year the Cubs traded him (along with Thad Bosley) to the Royals for catcher Jim Sundberg.
~Larry Gura 1947 (Cubs 1970-1973, 1985)
Gura didn’t pitch too much for the team that drafted him. He appeared in a total of 54 games over four seasons (mostly out of the bullpen). The Cubs traded him for pitcher Mike Paul. Paul had very little left in the tank. Gura, on the other hand, was just getting started. He became an all-star and two-time 18-game winner for the Kansas City Royals. He pitched in the World Series for the Royals in 1980, but was released before they returned to the World Series in 1985. The team that picked him up to finish out his career? The Cubs. He went 0-3 with an 8.31 ERA. Overall, only 3 of his 126 career wins came with the Cubs. (Photo: 1971 Baseball Card)
~Frank Gustine 1920 (Cubs 1949)
Frank was coming off three consecutive all-star seasons when he arrived in Chicago in December of 1948. The Hoopeston Illinois native was probably excited to be playing for the Cubs after spending the previous ten seasons with the Pirates. (His roommate on the road with the Pirates was Hall of Famer Ralph Kiner). Unfortunately, it didn’t quite work out for Frank in Chicago. He split time at third base with Bob Ramazzotti, and neither of them hit well. Gustine hit only .226, and was released before the season was over. He resurfaced briefly with the St. Louis Browns the following season, but that was the end of his big league career. (Photo: 1948 Leaf Baseball Card)
~Charlie Guth 1856 (White Stockings 1880)
Guth played exactly one game with the Cubs (then known as the White Stockings) on September 30, 1880. It was his only game in the big leagues. The pitcher (no record of if he was a righty or lefty) tossed a complete game victory, allowing twelve hits and five earned runs. It was his only game in the big leagues. Charlie tragically passed away in the summer of 1883 at the age of 27. He is buried in Graceland Cemetery in Chicago.
~Mark Guthrie 1965 (Cubs 1999-2000, 2003)
Guthrie also had two stints with the Cubs. In his first one he arrived from Boston in exchange for Cubs fan favorite Rod Beck. In the middle of the next year he was traded for another fan favorite, Davey Martinez. Guthrie was a decent lefthanded reliever, but never exactly a fan favorite. In his return to the Cubs in 2003, however, he was excellent all season. He appeared in 65 games as a lefty specialist, and posted a sparking 2.95 ERA. Unfortunately, he also lost Game 1 of the NLCS in Wrigley Field against the Marlins. Dusty Baker brought him in because lefties were coming up, but Jack McKeon outsmarted him, and brought in righty Mike Lowell to pinch hit. Lowell homered to win the game. Guthrie made one more appearance in the series; mop up duty in the Cubs victory in Game 2. That was his last appearance in the big leagues.
~Ricky Gutierrez 1970 (Cubs 2000-2001)
Gutierrez was known to Cub fans before he came to Chicago as the guy who got the only hit (a ball that should have been called an error at that) in Kerry Wood’s 20-strikeout game. Ricky had two very solid seasons at shortstop for the Cubs at the turn of the century. He was a very unselfish player, leading the league in sacrifices both years. Ricky’s big league career ended in style. He was part of the 2004 Boston Red Sox team that broke the curse, along with former Cubs teammates Bill Mueller and Mark Bellhorn.
Ricky’s hit in the 20-strikeout game. ..
~Angel Guzman 1981 (Cubs 2006-2009)
He was one of the young stud pitchers who came up to the big leagues for the Cubs in the first decade of this century (along with Prior, Zambrano, and Cruz). Some scouts thought Guzman had the greatest upside of any of them, but he hurt his arm, and though he tried to come back multiple times, he was never the same.
~Jose Guzman 1963 (Cubs 1993-1994)
The Cubs signed Guzman as a free agent after a few successful seasons as a starting pitcher with the Texas Rangers. He was supposed to be the pitcher that helped Cub fans forget Greg Maddux because GM Larry Himes signed Guzman instead of re-signing Maddux. Needless to say, this was a horrible, horrible, (did we say horrible yet?) decision. Although, to be fair, Guzman looked good at first. On April 6, 1993, he came just one out away from throwing a no-hitter. Otis Nixon broke it up with a single. Guzman won 12 games in 1993 (while Maddux won the Cy Young with Atlanta), and then developed arm problems. 1994 was his last year in the big leagues. After his playing career ended he became a Spanish-language broadcaster for the Texas Rangers.
(Photo: 1993 Pinnacle Baseball Card)