“Bugs” and Trains

28 Dec

Arthur “Bugs” Raymond was one of the most talented pitchers to end his career with a sub .500 (45-57) record.  Known more for his drinking problems and erratic behavior, Raymond was dead by 30.

John McGraw, the only manager who even for a short time, managed to get the best out Raymond, told sportswriter Grantland Rice that he had the best motion he’d ever seen and “Even half sober Raymond would have been one of the greatest.”

Rube Waddell, whose eccentricities were the standard by which all players of his era were judged, weighed in about Raymond, saying about Bugs something he could have said about himself:

“It’s a shame that fellow doesn’t take care of himself.  He would be a wonder if he would just keep in condition and pay strict attention to business.”

Bugs Raymond

Bugs Raymond

While Waddell was fascinated with fire and on many occasions assisted fire fighters (although there is no evidence supporting the long-held myth that Waddell left the mound during a game to follow a fire wagon), Raymond was enamored of trains.

According to the Hall of Fame sportswriter Hugh Fullerton III Raymond loved trains:

“The moment he enters a sleeping car he begins to take possession of the train and it isn’t long until he’s captured it.  Usually he begins by borrowing a blue coat with brass buttons and a uniform cap from some trainman or porter who admires baseball players, and arrayed in these he saunters through the train trying to collect fares, issuing orders and generally enjoying himself.”

Fullerton wrote about a 1907 road trip:

“(R)ushing through the darkness in two sections.   The St. Louis Cardinals were traveling in the rear car of the first section and the other section was following five minutes behind.  Suddenly there was a jarring of the brakes, the shrilling of air, the jar of sudden stoppage, and the second section jolted to a sudden standstill shaking sleepers out of their berths and awaking everybody.”

According to Fullerton the sudden stoppage and near accident of the following train was explained in the report issued several days later by the railroad:

“Raymond, who was looking for amusement, had stationed himself on the rear platform of the first section and amused himself touching off the red flare which is carried for use as a warning s and danger signals…the second section saw the warning and stopped.”

Hugh Fullerton

Hugh Fullerton


7 Responses to ““Bugs” and Trains”


  1. “The Cleverest bit of Quick Thinking I ever Witnessed” | Baseball History Daily - November 26, 2013

    […] Hugh Fullerton was one of baseball’s most influential writers; his career began in 1889 and he was active into the 1930s.  Widely credited as the first writer to directly quote players and managers, he is the source of hundreds of stories. Some, like the story the story of Bill Lange’s fence crashing catch, are likely untrue.  Others may be apocryphal, or exaggerated. […]

  2. “You are mostly Fakes, and yet I love you all!” | Baseball History Daily - March 19, 2014

    […] better known after his career had ended than he ever had been as a player because of sportswriter Hugh Fullerton who included stories he said were about Foster in his columns for more than twenty […]

  3. “The life of a Baseball Player is Extremely Unsatisfactory” | Baseball History Daily - April 30, 2014

    […] more than two decades covering baseball, Hugh Fullerton told fathers “Don’t send your boy into professional baseball.”  In response to a letter he […]

  4. Bugs Versus Rube | Baseball History Daily - June 9, 2014

    […] the race for distinction as the most erratic, eccentric and daffy pitcher of the big leagues “Bugs” Raymond is leading by an elbow over our old friend, G. Edward Waddell, known to fame and a portion of […]

  5. “Then the Harder I threw the Harder they hit them” | Baseball History Daily - October 3, 2014

    […] the Atlanta Crackers two years later told The Atlanta Constitution  he thought “Rube Waddell and Bugs Raymond, two players well-known for their eccentricities…will have to take off their top pieces,” to […]

  6. “Here was the King of all the Tramps I’d ever seen” | Baseball History Daily - October 7, 2015

    […] name was (Arthur) Bugs Raymond, the pitcher John McGraw always insisted had the finest pitching motion he ever saw, including […]

  7. Connie Mack vs Herman W. Souse | Baseball History Daily - November 6, 2015

    […] and pitch a wonderful game of ball.  Players who haven’t any more sense point to Rube Waddell, Bugs Raymond and that brand and say: ‘Ah, those were the good old days.  None of these high-priced managers […]

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