John Tilley

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John Tilley.jpg

John C. Tilley

  • Bats Right, Throws Unknown
  • Height 5' 7", Weight 154 lb.

BR page

Biographical Information[edit]

John Tilley played in only 41 major league games, but in that time managed to appear in three different leagues.

Tilley was born in New York, NY, with the exact date unknown. He apparently played for the 1877 Alaskas, a team in New York, and later for some other teams in New York in 1881.

In August 1882, he made his debut with the Cleveland Blues of the National League, and played in 15 games, almost all in left field. The team finished over .500.

He spent 1883 with Toledo in the Northwestern League and stayed with them the following year when they became a major league team in the American Association. He played 17 games in the outfield with the Toledo Blue Stockings in 1884 (all in left field), and also played with the St. Paul Apostles of the Union Association that same year. John is listed as appearing in nine games, although the team's official record was 2-6. All his games with the White Caps were as a left fielder. Overall he hit .138 in his three major league stints.

He also spent time in 1884 with Fort Wayne of the Northwestern League.

He can be seen in a photo of the 1883 Toledo team which is often reproduced because the team also included Fleet Walker, an early black player. One place to see the photo is here.

He married Carrie Fuller in 1879, but in 1893 was divorced as his wife claimed he was a habitual drunkard and was having an affair. In 1906, he took part in an old-timers game in Chicago, IL. Between 1891 and 1906, he is listed in Chicago city directories as a salesman and bartender. He then moved back to the New York City area and was a resident of Newark, NJ at the time of the 1920 census. That is where he died in 1927.

Further Reading[edit]

  • "John Tilley", in Bill Carle, ed.: Biographical Research Committee Report, SABR, May/June 2010, pp. 1-2.

Related Sites[edit]