Joseph Borden could not replace Al Spalding in 1876. The Braves (then known as the Red Caps) got pretty frustrated with him. How much? So much so they demoted him. Moved him to the bullpin? Nope. Moved him to the bench? Nope.
They made him a groundskeeper. Sometimes he was also a ticket taker. They didn’t want him to pitch anymore but needed to get something for what they were paying him. OK, this was the first year of the National League and the rules were a little different. Well, they were a lot different.
Joe had a short career. He only played 2 seasons as a pitcher. He played in a total of 39 games. His 13-16 record wasn’t overwhelming including a 2.56 ERA. He did have some notable games and a few firsts. He pitched baseball’s first no hitter in 1875. He also won the National League’s first game in 1876.