MLB Teams

MLB Teams That No Longer Exist In 2023

By / 25 April 2023 04:17 AM

Cleveland Spiders(Left) and Washington Senators(Right) are among the teams that no longer exists.
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MLB teams that no longer exist are Louisville Colonels and Baltimore Orioles. The first MLB team that defuncted was Colonels in 1899.

With the establishment of the National League in 1876 and the American League in 1901, both leagues merged into one organization just 23 years ago. 

Various teams went defunct after the formation of MLB and its major four leagues in the nineteenth century after a season. NL was left with just 12 teams by the 1892 season, and four were defunct in the 1899 season.

MLB teams now consist of 29 from the USA and one from Canada.

Other leagues like Federal League, American League, National League, Negro League, and seven other leagues were operated in the twentieth century that were recognized as Major leagues by MLB.

5 MLB Teams That Are Defuncted

Defunct MLB teams include Louisville Colonels, Cleveland Spiders, and many others. Some of them have relocated, and some have defected.

Four teams were defuncted while the National League was controversially reduced from 12 to 8 franchises in the 1899 season. Some other franchises played in one of the eleven Major leagues before being ultimately defected.

Five of the MLB franchises that were defuncted are listed below.

1. Louisville Colonels

Louisville Colonels were an MLB team that played in American Association and the National League.

Louisville Colonels was established in 1882 and existed for ten years till 1891. They were called Louisville Eclipse in the starting two years and later changed its name.

A player from Louisville Colonels as captured in their jersey in 1897
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The Colonels were known as a semi-pro team before joining the newly formed league of AA in 1882 and was running under the ownership of Barney Dreyfuss. After American Association dissolved in 1892, they moved to National League and played there until 1899 before Dreyfuss acquired control interest of the Pittsburgh Pirates.

The new owner of Pirate, Dreyfuss, brought 14 players from Colonels which ended the original Colonels Organization and was closed forever.

2. Baltimore Orioles

Baltimore Orioles was founded in 1882 and officially recognized as Baltimore Base Ball and Exhibition Company.

They were part of the American Association from 1882 to 1891 and moved to National League after disestablishment. They remained in the NL for seven years and were able to induct six players into the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

Baltimore Orioles won three league titles consecutively for three years from 1894 to 1896 and won Temple Cup national championship for two years in 1896 and 1897. Though successful, they contracted out of the NL after the 1899 season when the league reduced its size to eight.

The team played at the old Oriole Park for some time and moved to Union Park during the 1891 season. They had six managers, among which three got inducted into the Hall of Fame.

3. Cleveland Spiders

Cleveland Spiders were a professional baseball team founded in 1887 and based in Cleveland, Ohio.

The team was affiliated with National League from 1889 to 1899 for ten years after leaving the American Association after a year of affiliation. Previously they were known as Forest Citys and Blues and later emerged their name after its inaugural in the National League season.

The logo of Cleveland Spiders, a team established in 1887 and defuncted in 1899
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Cleveland Spiders won seven straight seasons under their manager Patsy Tebeau win 1891 to 1898 and finished second in the National League three times but didn't win any pennants. Although, they won the 1895 Temple Cup, a two-team league championship playoff predating the World Series.

The Spiders were the first team of Forest City and the third professional baseball franchise based in Cleveland.

4. Washington Senators

Washington Senators were known as Washington Statesmen and the Washington Nationals. After the team united with National League in 1892, they got owned by Jacob Earl Wagner. For only the establishment year in 1891, they joined American Association.

Washington Senators was formed in 1892 and defunct in 1899
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Playing for nine years, they produced two Baseball Hall of Famers, Roger Bresnahan as a player and Jon O'Rourke as the manager. The defunct happened when the teams were reduced from twelve to eight teams after the 1899 season, which includes the emission of Washington Senators.

In the years of their franchise, they never won any pennants and had a winning percentage of just 0.366. 

5. Chicago Whales

Chicago Whales was a short-term professional baseball team formed in 1913 and remained till 1915.

They were named Chicago Federals to differentiate themselves from Chicago White Sox and Chicago Cubs. They were affiliated with Federal League, where they finished second in 1914 and were able to win the league championship in 1915.

Whales produced two Baseball Hall of Famers, Mordecai Brown as a player and Joe Tinker as a manager and owner Charles Weeghman. They ended when the Federal League dealt with American and National leagues that disbanded all its franchises.

There are many other teams which defuncted in various periods, and they are listed below:

  1. Milwaukee Brewers (1901)
  2. Indianapolis Hoosiers (1914)
  3. Baltimore Terrapins (1914-1915)
  4. Pittsburgh Rebels (1914-1915)
  5. Buffalo Blues (1914-1915)
  6. Newark Peppers (1915)

Some MLB Oldest Teams

MLB oldest teams are Atlanta Braves, established in 1871. Chicago Cubs is the second MLB team formed in the same year.

Currently known as Atlanta Braves had lots of other names since its establishment in 1871 and entry into the MLB in 1876. They are the oldest one to exist in baseball history that is still active in today's time.

Atlanta Braves were previously known as Boston Beaneaters and is considered to be the oldest teams in MLB
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With the same year of establishment in 1871, they were one of the two franchises to form before the establishment of MLB in 1876. Before being called Cubs, they were Chicago White Stockings, Colts, and Orphans.

St. Louis Cardinals are the third oldest in the USA, which was established in 1882 and became part of MLB in the same year. 

Similarly, some of the oldest teams of the MLB are listed below:

  1. Pittsburgh Pirates
  2. Cincinnati Reds
  3. San Francisco Giants
  4. Philadelphia Phillies
  5. Los Angeles Dodgers
  6. Oakland Athletics
  7. Minnesota Twins

Which Are Original 16 MLB Teams?

Original 16 MLB teams include Boston Red Sox, Chicago White Sox, and Detroit Tigers. 8 teams from both AL and NL merged to create the Modern Era of baseball.

The term 'Original Sixteen' came from the National Hockey League from 1942, as their franchises were referred to Original Six then.

The formation of the American League in 1901 with eight franchises and the other franchises from the National League, established in 1876, made the 16 original MLB franchises in 1901. They remained unchanged till 50 years of the merger and enjoyed a period of stability.

New York Giants old logo, this team is one of the Original Sixteen teams of the MLB
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The 16 teams represented ten cities across the US and still playing in Major League Baseball, though many have moved from their original city. 

The Original Sixteen of MLB is listed below:

  1. Boston Red Sox
  2. Chicago White Sox
  3. Cleveland Indians
  4. Detroit Tigers
  5. New York Yankees
  6. Philadelphia Athletics
  7. St. Louis Browns
  8. Washington Senators
  9. Boston Braves
  10. Brooklyn Dodgers
  11. Chicago Cubs
  12. Cincinnati Reds
  13. New York Giants
  14. Philadelphia Phillies
  15. Pittsburgh Pirates
  16. St. Louis Cardinals

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