1915 January

2nd  The Cardinals try to prevent OF Lee Magee, 25, from playing for the Brooklyn Tip-Tops. Like most such suits, it will fail. Magee will play and manage in the Federal League.

4th  Hans Lobert, “fastest man” in the NL, is traded by the Phils to the Giants for righthander Al Demaree, infielder Milt Stock, and C Bert Adams. The speedster will injure his knee in a preseason game at West Point.

5th  The FL sues organized baseball, claiming it to be an illegal trust and asking that it be dissolved and all contracts voided. The case is filed in U.S. court in Chicago, before Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis. He will stall his decision, and peace is declared at the end of the year. The league shifts players to beef up teams in key cities. Benny Kauff, the FL’s answer to Ty Cobb, is moved from Indianapolis to Brooklyn.

Thirteen years after a Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision effectively banned him from playing for the Athletics, Nap Lajoie (.258 last year) rejoins them. With Lajoie leaving Cleveland, the owner will ask several newspapermen for nickname suggestions to replace the Naps. He’ll pick the name “Indians”. A popular myth will be that a newspaper contest resulted in the winning nickname, after the late Lou Sockalexis, a Penobscot Indian who was a popular Cleveland player in the late 1890s. The team doesn’t correct the myth until 2000.

9th  The National Commission declares University of Michigan senior George Sisler a free agent after a 2-year fight. The Pirates’ owner Barney Dreyfuss claimed rights to Sisler, who had signed a contract as a minor but never played pro ball. After graduating, Sisler will sign with the St. Louis Browns, managed by his former college coach, Branch Rickey.

24th  In a retreat from the FL competition, the Baltimore Orioles of the International League move to Richmond, VA. With the demise of the FL, the Orioles will return to Baltimore.