Red Sox get a historic reprobate
Right-hand hitting Ben Chapman played for the Red Sox from1937-1938, and the hitting numbers are impressive. The outfielder hit .324 over a 240 game spread with 13 home runs and 137 RBI. He also stole 40 bases in the time frame. Chapman was traded after the 1938 season to the Cleveland Indians. For his MLB career, Chapman hit an impressive .302, but his legacy is one of hate.
Chapman was a key player for the great New York Yankees teams of the 1930s before being traded to make room for rookie Joe DiMaggio. Chapman was a three-time All-Star with the Bombers and topped the AL in steals three times.
Chapman’s racial and inflammatory history surfaced well before Jackie Robinson when he would taunt Jewish Yankee fans with Nazi salutes and any other epitaphs he could dream up.
Chapman was also involved in a spiking incident of Washington second baseman Buddy Meyer that led to a riot. He was fined and suspended for his actions. Chapman had an established pattern of behavior with taunts and physical confrontation even once being suspended for a season as a minor league manager for slugging an umpire.
Later that behavior emerged when Chapman became manager of the Phillies and targeted Robinson. A cruel and abusive person with domestic assault on his rap sheet. A career reprobate.