What I meant that Kid Nichols suffered most from my 19th century penalties was that I penalized 19th century pitchers for a time penalty more than anyone else. Kid Nichols was the best pitcher in the 19th Century, so he was penalized more points than anyone else. It isn’t that I don’t like Kid Nichols, as I do like him as far as I know him. It is that the 19th Century had so many pitchers pitch so many innings and we know they weren’t all that great.
If I was being paid for picking the top 100 pitchers, I would have penalized the pitchers who pitched before 1890 more than those who pitched in 1890. That is one thing I learned while doing this. Of course, I would have had more divisions all the way through, but I didn’t want to spend the rest of my life doing this project.
The two best pitchers of the 19th Century were Nichols and Cy Young. Nichols had a better ERA in a tougher park then Young to pitch in. He also threw more innings and won more games. James said that Nichols faded at a normal rate. His career was kind of strange to me at least at the end. He didn’t pitch as well as normal in 1900 and I’m guessing he was hurt as he didn’t have as many starts. I checked his SABR biography and he was hurt in 1900.
His statistics look better in 1901, but not that much better. Some of his stats look even worse that year. Then at the age of 32 he misses two years. I found out what happened. He got to be part owner of a team in the Western League located in Kansas City. However, a rival league had a more popular team in Kansas City and Nichols’ team folded at the end of the 1903 season.
He then became a player manager for the St. Louis Cardinals. He also turned out to be the team’s best player in 1904. His 1905 season wasn’t as great. He and his team got off to a slow start. He was relieved as manager early in the season, but still pitched. Just not well. He was released but the Phillies picked him up and he pitched better. In 1906 he no longer had it and retired. However, he is an easy hall of fame despite my best efforts to penalize him.