Hartman, of McKeesport, Pa., promises to be the star third baseman and batter of the St. Louis team, and is as good as Denny Lyons ever was in that position. He can handle a ball with great precision and he bats with good judgment.
-Sporting Life, April 24, 1897
Fred Hartman was not a bad player but he was no Denny Lyons. He may have been as good defensively as Lyons but Lyons was a vastly superior batter. Hartman was, at best, over the course of his career, a league average hitter. Lyons once led the AA in on-base percentage and slugging percentage. He had a career OPS+ of 140. Lyons' comps include guys like Oyster Burns, Tip O'Neal, and Jackie Robinson. Hartmans's comps include guys like Chuck Dressen and Babe Pinelli. Denny Lyons is probably one of the top fifty third basemen of all-time. Fred Hartman may not be in the top 250.