Positions: ss, of
Team: Kansas City Monarchs
Height: 5' 11'' Weight: 230
Born: 1893, Georgia
Died: Detroit, Michigan
A great shortstop, Dobie Moore was a superb fielder with outstanding range and a terrific arm. He could go in the hole, make a diving, backhand stab, stand up, and, flatfooted, throw the man out at first. An outstanding hitter, he hit for average and could also hit the long ball, with his best season coming in 1924, when he hit .453, led the league in doubles, and had 10 home runs and a .694 slugging percentage. The outspoken shortstop was not hesitant to offer criticism of teammates, and sometimes this practice caused resentment.
Moore was one of the players from the 25th Infantry team stationed at Fort Huachuca who were recommended to Kansas City Monarchs' owner J.L. Wilkinson by Casey Stengel. After joining the Monarchs for the first Negro National League season, he stepped into the cleanup spot and posted respectable marks of .274 and .264 in their first two seasons. In 1922 he really came into his own, slapping the ball for a .385 batting average. During the next three years he led the Kansas City Monarchs to three consecutive pennants, with batting averages of .365, .453, and .325. In the 1924 World Series victory over Hilldale, he hit an even .300, second-best on the team, and in the following Series he led the team at the plate with a .364 average while leading the team in hits, runs batted in, and slugging percentage.
In 1926 he continued his hot hitting, getting off to a .381 start, but his brilliant career was cut short early in the season due to a shooting incident that disabled him while still in his prime. The incident was cloaked in an "air of mystery" as the parties involved told conflicting stories. The night began when Moore and three other ballplayers started out for a cabaret party in their honor, but he changed his mind and went to see Elsie Brown, who allegedly mistook him for a prowler in the alley and shot him. Later she claimed that Moore had hit her in the face three times before she shot him, but Moore responded that if he had hit her three times, she would not have been able to go get a gun. Other accounts indicated that Ms. Brown was his girlfriend and that she shot him in the brothel she owned following a lovers' quarrel. In an effort to escape, Moore jumped off a terrace and shattered the bones in his already wounded leg. Whatever the details regarding the cause of the shooting, Moore was shot in the leg, with the bullet breaking two bones into six pieces, which ended his baseball days.
With his career prematurely terminated, he left behind a lifetime .365 average for his seven seasons in the Negro Leagues. During the winters of 1920 and 1921 he played with the Los Angeles White Sox and the Colored All-Stars, respectively. In other winters he plied his trade in Cuba, where he smacked the ball for a .356 lifetime average.
Source: James A. Riley, The Biographical Encyclopedia of the Negro Baseball Leagues, New York: Carroll & Graf Publishers, Inc., 1994.