Primary Position: Left Field
Birthplace: Alamance County
First, Middle Names: Benjamin Wesley Rippay Nicknames: Baby, Knight of the Limitless Linen
Date of Birth: April 30, 1852 Date and Place of Death: June 6, 1911, New York
Burial: Lutheran All Faiths Cemetery, Queens, NY
High School: Undetermined
College: Did Not Attend
Bats: R Throws: R Height and Weight: 5-11, 202
Debut Year: 1875 Final Year: 1888 Years Played: 12
Teams and Years: Keokuk Westerns, 1875; Hartford Dark Blues, 1875; Cincinnati Reds, 1876-77; Chicago White Stockings, 1877; Cincinnati Reds, 1878; Boston Red Stockings, 1879-80; Cincinnati Red Stockings, 1883-87; New York Metropolitans, 1887; Kansas City Cowboys, 1888
G AB H R RBI HR BA. OBP. SLG. WAR
895 3741 1115 733 553 56 .298 .345 .444 26.3
Awards/Honors: NC Sports Hall of Fame, 1992; Boys of Summer Top 100
Charley Jones, as baseball historians insist, is likely the first North Carolinian to play in what’s now the major leagues. He was in the vanguard of professional athletes who, in the 1870s, began to transform a game played by amateurs, mostly in Eastern cities, into a national sport that would reach into every crossroad hamlet and schoolyard playground in America.
Despite what his plaque says at the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame or what previous biographers have written, much of Jones’ life before baseball remains a mystery. We don’t even know with certainty who is parents were or where in the state he was born. Frankly, much of what has been written about his early life is wrong.