Prince Edward Island’s first major league player has been inducted into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame.
Pownal native George (Dandy) Wood was honoured posthumously on the weekend in St. Mary’s, Ont., alongside former Toronto Blue Jays closer Tom Henke, and Kelowna’s Allan Simpson, the founder and inaugural editor of bi-weekly magazine Baseball America.
Wood was the eighth Canadian to reach the major leagues. His playing career spanned 1880 to 1892.
Born Nov. 9, 1858, he was the oldest child born to Joseph A. Wood and Mary Ann Jenkins.
The family moved to Boston in 1867.
Known for his rifle arm, Wood made his debut as a left fielder with the Worcester Ruby Legs in 1880.
He went on to play for the Detroit Wolverines, Philadelphia Quakers, Philadelphia Athletics, Baltimore Orioles, and Cincinnati Reds, finishing his 13-year career with 1,467 hits, 965 runs, 68 homers and 601 RBIs in 1280 games.
In 1882, Wood was the National League’s home run champion, dinging seven over the fence with Detroit.
Following his playing career, Wood umpired 93 professional games.
He died at the age of 65 in Pennsylvania.
“George’s career stats are all the more remarkable in that baseballs of that era were inferior in quality and well-abused before replacement,” said Charlottetown genealogist Doug MacDonald, a distant relative of Wood.
MacDonald attended the induction ceremony.
Wood was inducted into the Prince Edward Island Hall of Fame and Museum on Sept. 25, 2009.
According to the Baseball Almanac website, Wood is one of just three Island players to play in Major League Baseball.
The others were Charlottetown native Vern Handrahan, a right-handed relief pitcher with the Kansas City Athletics from 1964 to 1966, and Covehead native Henry Oxley, who played three games with the New York Gothams and New York Metropolitans in 1884.