Johnny Frederick: The Record Freeman Just Surpassed

Brooklyn discovers a new diamond talent in Frederick.

by Nouman Rasool
Johnny Frederick: The Record Freeman Just Surpassed
© Hulton Archive/Getty Images

In a landmark moment on Friday night at Nationals Park, Freddie Freeman's 53rd double of the season set a new standard, marking the highest number of images in a single season for the Dodgers. The record had been held for an astonishing 94 years and ten days by former Brooklyn outfielder Johnny Frederick.

Johnny Frederick's association with the Dodgers began in 1929 when they acquired him from Memphis. At the time, Frederick had already spent six fruitful years in the minor leagues, especially his tenure in the Pacific Coast League.

Notably 1924, he accumulated 279 hits and 67 doubles playing for Salt Lake.

Brooklyn's Outfield Star

Frederick was initially sought for his robust batting capabilities, but the Brooklyn community quickly grew fond of his exceptional outfield performance.

A May 24, 1929 column in The Brooklyn Daily Times compared him to Jigger Statz, hinting at Frederick's prowess in the outfield. Speaking of franchise records, the Hall of Famer Zack Wheat was the torchbearer in 1924, matching Jimmy Johnston's record set three years prior.

However, Frederick reset this record during his rookie year in 1929. As fate would have it, on August 29, in a match against the Giants, New York's left-hander, Bill Walker, was on the verge of making history at Ebbets Field.

With a 6-0 lead, Walker's no-hitter was interrupted by Frederick's record-setting double. This hit robbed Walker of a no-hit game and prevented his shutout bid. The Circleville Herald covered this historical moment with an apt headline, "Young Dodger Player Ruins No Hit Game." The article depicted Frederick's game-changing performance as a masterstroke, overshadowing Walker's impeccable game.

Fredrick's journey with the Dodgers saw him hitting a .308 average, holding several franchise rookie records, including hits (206) and total bases (342). In his expansive 19-year career, Frederick collected 3,421 hits and 671 doubles.

His standout performance during his first season with the Dodgers established a team record that remained unbroken for almost a century. Now, the narrative has changed. The baton has passed from Johnny Frederick to Freddie Freeman, the new doubles record holder for the Dodgers.