Sam Wise Baseball Card - Old Judge N172 by Goodwin & Company issued in 1888
A well-regarded infielder, Sam Wise played 1,175 games during the dead ball era, when the baseball was softer and slightly larger than today’s 9-inch ball. And, he played when the game was focused on the infield, and the infield was loaded with pebbles, stones, and even bits of broken glass.
Sam Wise was a standout all-around player for seven seasons for the old Boston Braves of the National League, 1882-1888, and helped the team win the NL Title in 1883, finishing with a very solid 63-35 record – 4 games ahead of second place Chicago. That season Sam Wise batted .271 and had 25 doubles, 7 triples and 4 homers. The next year, he led the league in strikeouts with 104. In 1886 he led the NL in fielding percentage with .956, an usually high percentage due to the fact that even bad hops off of stones were classified as errors in this time-frame, and most infielders made 40-60 errors per/season.
In 1890 Sam Wise played with Buffalo of the Player League and in 1891 with Baltimore of the American Association (a major league in this era).