100 Years Ago Today

A History Of Events And Happenings From Exactly One Hundred Years Ago

Ty Cobb’s Tale Of Assault And Murder

Ty Cobb plays for the Detroit Tigers baseball team. He had a great 1911 season – hitting his first grand slam, having a 40 game hitting streak, at one point a batting average of .450 and actually stealing 2nd, 3rd, and home base on three consecutive pitches!

But Cobb is known for being an aggressive player who plays like he’s at war, purposely sliding into players with sharpened spikes. Off the field he is also known for his sour personality, being a racist and his temper which got him into fights. In May 1912  Cobb went berserk and climbed into the stands and attacked a fan who had been heckling him. The fan had lost all of one hand and three fingers on his other hand in an industrial accident. This didn’t stop Cobb. When onlookers shouted at Cobb to stop because the man had no hands, Cobb reportedly replied, “I don’t care if he got no feet!”

On August 11, 1912  Cobb was in Detroit and claims he was jumped by 3 men while on his way to catch a train to New York to appear for the Tigers in an exhibition game against a minor league team. He was with his wife in an automobile when the attack happened.

“I was on the way to the station when 3 men came out of the dark and stopped me. I got out of the machine and said, ‘What’s the matter, fellows?’ It was easy to see they had been drinking and they answered me in some foreign language. They wanted to fight and one grabbed me, I knocked him down. One of the others sailed into me and while I was fighting with him the man on the ground got up and drew a knife.

I dodged him but only in time for for the knife cut my coat and made a slight wound in my shoulder. This frightened the men and they ran off. Mrs. Cobb and I continued to the station.”

Cobb was treated for a half inch cut on the back. Cobb would claim he had beaten one of his attackers to death but there is no record of a body being found by the coroner or any of mention of a body in the Detroit newspapers. Judging by his personality, many fellow ballplayers would not be surprised if it were true.

Ty Cobb
not a nice guy


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