In early 1891, second baseman Clarence Childs signed a $2,300 contract with the Baltimore Orioles, about $65,000 in today’s dollars. Upon signing he was immediately paid a $200 advance. He then abandoned the team, saying that the Orioles had deceived him and he could find a better deal elsewhere. The Orioles sued. They lost. And, Childs joined the Cleveland Spiders.
(Months later, the Orioles were still in court trying to get their $200 back. It’s unclear if they ever did.)
Childs jilted the Orioles. Probably wasn’t the first to do it. Definitely not the last. (See: Mark Teixeira, 21st-century Orioles jilter.)
End of story?
What if I told you Clarence Childs wasn’t always called Clarence? What if someone along the way nicknamed him Cupid? Cupid Childs?
Well, friends, this Valentine’s Day post is practically writing itself. Continue reading