Today many MLB teams utilize numerous types of defensive alignments depending on the batter in order to gain a defensive advantage.

Which MLB manager was the first to implement an infield shift for his defense in order to gain said advantage?

  • @waxeagle As noted by my comments, the answer to this question has yet to be provided. Even the inclusion of JacobG's supplemental info I do not see the name of a specific manager who implemented the infield shift Perhaps you may be able to help identify this manager.
    – E1Suave
    May 8, 2012 at 19:20
  • That does make it significantly better.
    – wax eagle
    May 8, 2012 at 19:25
  • @waxeagle Your highest rated question (How is offside determined in Soccer?) can be answered directly from wikipedia
    – E1Suave
    May 8, 2012 at 19:26
  • 1
    @waxeagle I am sorry it has been a long day for you. However, I disagree with your assessment of my questions being "simple looking and low effort" As for deserving a second look perhaps you should aid in the process of editing the question if you feel my questions aren't appropriate rather than downvoting and later admitting to being "grumpy". Not exactly a pleasant welcome to sports.stackexchange.com.
    – E1Suave
    May 8, 2012 at 19:34
  • 1
    Oh yeah, I forgot. Welcome to Sports.SE! I try really hard to encourage good trivia questions here, a lot of what's been posted so far is really bad, honestly if a single link to wikipedia answers it, its not worth our time. I don't blame you, I blame the examples that you looked at. Sorry for being unpleasant to you. While I could edit your questions into something good, I'd much rather help users figure out what good questions look like. Teach a man to fish and all that.
    – wax eagle
    May 8, 2012 at 19:39

1 Answer 1


Wikipedia says that this first happened in the 1920's, but apparently became most famous when employed against Ted Williams by Eddie Dyer.

Minor supplemental info
From here:

"The only year that [Cy] Williams didn't bat .300 over that span was 1923, when he batted .293 and blasted 41 round-trippers to take over the NL career home-run record from Roger Connor. National League managers recognized that the best defense was to play him extremely deep and around toward right field"

It seems like "infield shift" would be one of those things logged as an item of interest in a sports article, but I can't find anything definitive.

  • Thanks for the link. Unfortunately, I am already aware of Eddie Dyer the St. Louis Manager and Lou Boudreau the Cleveland Manager (for whom the shift is named after) This being said the same article discussed the first implementation of the shift came against Cy Williams in the 1920's. What manager was it that implemented this 1920's infield shift against Cy Williams?
    – E1Suave
    May 8, 2012 at 2:48
  • You mean Cy Williams, right? It's a little unclear that the quote discusses Cy and not Ted. ;)
    – JW8
    May 8, 2012 at 16:57
  • Edited to clarify... I was so immersed in reading, I forgot to note the distinction.
    – Jacob G
    May 8, 2012 at 17:49
  • This looks to be about the best answer available on the web. Unfortunately record keeping in the 20s just wasn't very good. It'd be awesome if there was some old Radio archives available to see if we could find it, but that might be the only way to know. It seems pretty certain that there was a shift for Cy, and that several teams used it, but the details are very thin from what I've been able to find.
    – wax eagle
    May 9, 2012 at 15:00
  • wow, more research, even radio would probably be poor as radio broadcasts from that era were recreations from wire reports, which likely wouldn't have positioning information. looks like first hand accounts will be the only way. Now to find some.
    – wax eagle
    May 9, 2012 at 15:10

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