Walter L. Watson
- Bats Unknown, Throws Unknown
- Height 5' 9", Weight 145 lb.
- Debut May 19, 1887
- Final Game May 27, 1887
- Born January 27, 1865 in Middleport, OH USA
- Died November 23, 1898 in Middleport, OH USA
Walter "Mother" Watson appeared in a couple major league games with the Cincinnati Red Stockings in 1887, on a team which went 81-54. Watson was 22 years old at the time. He pitched 14 innings, giving up 9 earned runs along with 9 unearned runs. He also played in the outfield but had no chances.
He is the only major leaguer named or nicknamed "Mother". A 1987 article in the New York Times said that he "was considered virtuous". However, that explanation of his nickname doesn't square with the fact that a "Mother Watson" was a character in Horatio Alger novels, and not a nice one. Perhaps, the fame of the novels made the name just too enticing for major leaguers of the time not to utilize when a man named Watson came along.
He is recorded as weighing only 145 pounds.
The Wheeling Daily Register, on March 30, 1887, reported that Watson was going to be given a trial by the Zanesville team, with expenses paid. While with Zanesville he beat the St. Louis Browns, which got him a shot at the majors.
He died at age 33 after being shot.