John Mahon (baseball)

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John J. Mahon was a politician and professional baseball executive. He served as president and principal owner of the Baltimore Orioles of the American League in 1902. He was also a notable political boss in Baltimore, Maryland, affiliated with the Democratic Party.

Baseball career[edit]

Mahon succeeded Sydney Frank as team president of the American League's (AL) Baltimore Orioles in 1902.[1]

Baltimore's owners felt that AL president Ban Johnson was hurting the team's fortunes. When John McGraw left the Orioles for the New York Giants of the National League (NL), Mahon and his co-owners supported McGraw.[2] In the meantime, Mahon purchased McGraw's shares in the Orioles.[3]

With the team in financial straits, reportedly owing $12,000 ($327,092 in current dollar terms),[4][5] Mahon purchased shares in the team from players John McGraw, Joe Kelley, and Wilbert Robinson, becoming principal shareholder of the Orioles.[4] Mahon then sold controlling interest in the Orioles to Andrew Freedman, principal owner of the Giants, and John T. Brush, principal owner of the Cincinnati Reds, on July 17.[4] In the day they owned the franchise, Freedman released the best players on the Orioles from their contracts so that they could be signed by National League teams: Kelley and Cy Seymour signed with the Reds, while McGraw, Joe McGinnity, Roger Bresnahan, Dan McGann, and Jack Cronin signed with the Giants.[6][7] Johnson, along with Orioles minority owners, took control of the Orioles franchise, which had to forfeit their game that day as they did not have enough players.[4][8]

Political career[edit]

Mahon was a political boss associated with the Democratic Party.[9][10] Mahon was elected to the Baltimore City Council in 1916.[11] He was considered a Democratic political leader of Baltimore later in his career.[12]

Personal life[edit]

Mahon was father-in-law of Joe Kelley.[1][13]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Special to The New York Times. (February 18, 1902). "Baltimore's New Baseball President. - Article". Select.nytimes.com. Retrieved April 19, 2012. 
  2. ^ The Pittsburgh Press - Google News Archive Search
  3. ^ Baltimore Morning Herald - Google News Archive Search
  4. ^ a b c d Keenan, Jimmy. "Joe Kelley". Society for American Baseball Research. Retrieved March 24, 2012. 
  5. ^ The Pittsburgh Press - Google News Archive Search
  6. ^ Baltimore American - Google News Archive Search
  7. ^ Dewey, Donald; Acocella, Nicholas (2005). Total Ballclubs: The Ultimate Book of Baseball Teams. Sportclassic Books. p. 37. ISBN 1-894963-37-7. 
  8. ^ "Freedman Buys Baltimore Club: President, Mahon Sells Out American Magnates to National League. Players Go To New York: Ban Johnson Organizing New Club to Retain Maryland City in Circuit. Johnson Discusses the Deal". Chicago Daily Tribune. July 17, 1902. p. 6. Retrieved March 22, 2012.  (subscription required)
  9. ^ "John J. Mahon, Boss". Pqasb.pqarchiver.com. March 10, 1910. Retrieved April 19, 2012. 
  10. ^ "Mahon'S Pull Still Good". Pqasb.pqarchiver.com. July 23, 1918. Retrieved April 19, 2012. 
  11. ^ "John J. Mahon Elected To City Council Seat". Pqasb.pqarchiver.com. April 26, 1916. Retrieved April 19, 2012. 
  12. ^ "Mayor Disputes O'Conor's Claim To A. F. Of L. Backing". Pqasb.pqarchiver.com. August 18, 1938. Retrieved April 19, 2012. 
  13. ^ The Pittsburgh Press - Google News Archive Search