Bill Phillips

First baseman, Baseball Player

1857 – 1900


Who was Bill Phillips?

William B. "Bill" Phillips, also known as Silver Bill, was a Canadian professional baseball first baseman from the mid-1870s until the late 1880s. From 1879 to 1888, he played for three major league teams; the Cleveland Blues of the National League from 1879 to 1884, the Brooklyn Grays of the American Association from 1885 to 1887, and the Kansas City Cowboys of the AA in 1888. A native of Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada, he has the distinction of being the first Canadian to play in the major leagues.

As a batter, Phillips finished in the top-ten among league leaders on multiple occasions, including triples four times, and games played, at bats, doubles, runs batted in, and extra base hits three times each. Additionally, as a fielder, he finished among the defensive leaders for the league's first baseman in double plays for three consecutive years, and twice finished first in putouts and fielding percentage. He died in Chicago, Illinois at the age of 43. He was later enshrined into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame in 1988 for his accomplishments, and is considered by some to be greatest Canadian first baseman in baseball history.

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Apr 1, 1857
Saint John
  • Canada
Lived in
  • Saint John
Oct 7, 1900

on July 23, 2013


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