It was the universal opinion among St. Louis base ball enthusiasts yesterday that Mr. Lucas never took a better step in the right direction for the good of his club than in releasing Dunlap, whose sale to the Detroit Club was announced exclusively in the Globe-Democrat yesterday morning. By many of the Maroons' devoted admirers the news was hailed with genuine delight, and the prediction that the club would now be almost certain to do better could be heard everywhere. While Dunlap's ability as a great second baseman was never for a moment questioned, and while he is justly entitled to be called the "king of them all," there is but little doubt that his departure from the St. Louis Club is a good thing for the club and its owners. Dunlap's ways are too well known to the base ball public of St. Louis to necessitate any comment. He played well when he wanted to, and when he didn't he was the most aggravating and wretched player on the team. He wanted everything his own way, and when crossed made it disagreeable for everybody around him. As the captain of the club the players looked to him for advice and instruction, and what he said usually went with them, and it was always noticed that when it was an "off" day for Dunlap the rest of the club usually followed in his wake, and played as poorly as they knew how. Dunlap's off-days usually came when the manager and owner of the club insisted upon having a world to say as to how the nine should be run.
Speaking of the matter, Mr. Lucas said to a Globe-Democrat reporter yesterday: "I am heartily-in fact, really happy-that Dunlap has gone, and I think that the club will get along much better without him. I was in favor of letting him go at the end of last season but Manager Schmelz insisted on keeping him, and it was only through the latter that I consented to have him remain on the team. Mr. Schmelz had an idea that he could get along with Dunlap, but I never thought so. No manager can get along with him unless he allows him to do just as he likes. He has always been the disturbing element in the club, and every trouble that has arisen among the players can be traced directly or indirectly to him. My opinion of him, however, as a ball player has never been changed since he has been associated with the club. I think he has no equal in his position, and but for his ways I would ask for a no better man. Neither did I like his bulldozing tactics on the field. I like to see kicking, and I think it pays; but Dunlap didn't kick as other captains did. He would raise a big row over the most trivial occurrences. I do not approve of this policy. I like to see a man stand up for his rights, but I believe in doing it in a gentlemanly way. Another thing that made matters worse was Dunlap's eager desire to leave the club. He was dissatisfied all the time. I had a good offer to send him to Detroit, and get some money back that I have spent on him, and so I decided to let him go. I am entirely satisfied with the deal, and I know he is, so there will be no regrets on either side."
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, August 8, 1886
I think we all know that Dunlap was a difficult character to deal with but I don't think I've ever read a harsher description of him. I'm sure the whole thing is an attempt to justify his sale to the fans but it also has a ring of truth to it. The fact of the matter is that the King of Second Basemen was a bit of a jerk.
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