Debut: September 5, 1915
World Series Famous
The most famous thing he did was throw out Babe Ruth trying to steal second base with two-outs in the ninth inning to produce the final out in the 1926 World Series to give the Cardinals their first World Championship.
Cubs Trade him to Cardinals
The Cubs traded O’Farrell to the St. Louis Cardinals at the start of the 1925 season for Mike Gonzalez and Howard Freigau.
O’Farrell experienced the highlight of his career in 1926 when he hit for a .293 average with a career-high 30 doubles, 7 home runs and 68 runs batted in as he helped the Cardinals clinch the National League pennant. He also led National League catchers in games caught and in putouts. In the 1926 World Series against the New York Yankees, O’Farrell produced a .301 batting average but, is remembered for throwing out Babe Ruth trying to steal second base for the last out of the seven-game series as the Cardinals claimed their first-ever world championship. In November, he was voted the winner of the 1926 National League Most Valuable Player Award with 79 out of the possible 80 votes. He was the first catcher to win a Most Valuable Player Award.
How He Became Manager
In December 1926, the Cardinals traded their manager Rogers Hornsby to the New York Giants for Frankie Frisch and Jimmy Ring while O’Farrell was named player-manager. He led the Cardinals to a second-place finish, behind the Pittsburgh Pirates even though the Cardinals won three more games than the previous season. He only played in 61 games that season because of a sore arm. The owner of the Cardinals at that time, Sam Breadon was unhappy that the Cardinals didn’t win the pennant, and that O’Farrell was leaving his pitchers in too long during games. He was given a $5,000 bonus to step down and replaced by Bill McKechnie. O’Farrell was traded to the New York Giants for George Harper in May 1928. The trade caught many observers by surprise as, it left the Cardinals without an experienced catcher while the Giants had a surplus of catchers
As the player/manager, he produced a 92-61 record to win the National League in 1927 but lost to Murderer’s Row in the World Series.