Clipping:The Metropolitans stay out of the AA; Hulbert's opinion of the AA

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Date Sunday, November 6, 1881

Chicago, November 5.--Messrs. Appleton and Mutrie, of the Metropolitans of New York, arrived here this morning from St. Louis, and spent several hours in conference with President Hulburt, taking their departure for home on the 5:15 train this evening. The result of the conference is, as might be expected, a decision that the Metroplitans will not enter the new Association organized at Cincinnati. While at Cincinnati Mr. Appleton declined to commit his Club either for or against the Association, preferring to wait and see what its relations were to be toward the old League, with which he was determined the Metropolitan Club should be on friendly terms. The conference with President Hulburt settled the question. It was evident that harmonious co-operation between the League and the American Association was an impossibility after the action of the Association in the case of Jones, and the engagement of that player by the Cincinnati Club. Jones stands expelled from the League, and, according to Mr. Hulburt, that body will refuse to entertain any proposition looking to his reinstatement coming from a Club which has already disregarded the League penalty by employing him. The long and short of it is that the League policy, as foreshadowed by Mr. Hulburt, will be to ignore the American Association altogether, or, if necessary, to declare war to the knife.

With this understanding Mr. Appleton was not long in making up his mind to have nothing to do with the new Association, but to continue the Metropolitans as members of the existing League Alliance, which is to be strengthened and remodeled at the December meeting of the League, so as to be prepared for all emergencies. It is proposed, among other things, to alter the League Alliance system so as to provide for the admission of but one club from any city, to establish more rigid rules as to eligibility in the matter of financial backing, &c. In addition to the Metropolitans and the new Club to be organized in Newark, N.J., there will be a League Alliance Club in Philadelphia, arrangements having already been perfected for the leasing and fitting up of grounds and the engagement of players. The new Philadelphia Club will be a totally distinct organization from either of the other existing Clubs in that city, and will be backed by wealthy and responsible men. With two or three other Clubs in close proximity to New York as competitors for the League Alliance championship, together with the games that can be secured with the Eastern members of the League and with the Western Clubs when upon their Eastern trips, Mr. Appleton calculates that he can furnish the patrons of base-ball in New York far better sport than could be done with the Metropolitans as members of the new Association and in an attitude of hostility toward the National League. During the season of 1881 the Metropolitans had fifty-nine games on their own grounds with league Clubs, which was a larger number than any League Club had on its own grounds.

Mr. Hulburt offered Mr. Appleton liberal terms to bring the Metropolitans West for a series of six games in the latter part of next April, two in Cleveland and four in Chicago, but did not strongly advise the trip, as Chicago weather in April is treacherous, and the Metropolitans could probably do better to receive the Eastern League Clubs on the New York Grounds during that month. Although a contract with John Reilly to play first base for the “Mets” was secured by Mr. Appleton while in Cincinnati, the latter had neglected the important precaution of protecting that contract by filing notice with Secretary Young at Washington. At Mr. Hulbert's suggestion the necessary notice was mailed to-day from this city, and the Reilly contract will, therefore, be under the protection of the League. It was a similar neglect in the case of Muldoon that left the bars down and enabled Cleveland to gobble him up.

In a general way, President Hulburt expresses contempt for the new Association and its plan of organizing. He regards the guarantee policy a mistake, and calls attention to the fact that in the last three games played by the Chicagos in Cincinnati in September, 1880, the visiting Club's share was exactly $60,10 per game, which is less than the $65 guarantee adopted by the new Association. He predicts that this obligation to pay $65 to the visiting Club will be a heavy tax on some of the home Clubs toward the close of the season, when they are hopelessly beaten in the race and the attendance fallen to almost nothing, while the visiting Club only realizes enough to pay traveling expenses, with nothing left for salary account. Hulburt things the Association made a blunder in not first joining the League Alliance and then going on with its legislation. This course, he says, would have forced the League to open the warfare and discuss the whole question as a matter of League policy. As the case stands now, the new Association stands in contempt of the League, and has, by its action, precipitated hostilities.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
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Submitted by Richard Hershberger
Origin Initial Hershberger Clippings


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