John Henry Humphries ((1861-11-12)November 12, 1861 – November 29, 1933(1933-11-29)) was a Major League Baseball player who played for the New York Gothams and the Washington Nationals. Despite being left-handed, Humphries played catcher, a position dominated by right-handed players. He also played outfield and first base. Humphries was the father of the poet Rolfe Humphries, who mentioned him in his poem "Polo Grounds."
Humphries attended Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. He was the first player from Cornell to play in Major League Baseball.
New York Gothams
At the age of 21, Humphries began his professional career with the New York Gothams. In his first season, 1884, Humphries hit .112 with 12 hits, one double and four RBIs in 29 games.
In 1885 Humphries batted only .094 with six hits and two RBIs in 20 games. In his two seasons with the Gothams, Humphries batted .105 with 18 hits one double and six runs batted in and played 49 games.
Humphries also played for the Washington Nationals in 1885. In 49 games with the Nationals he batted .176 with 23 runs, 34 hits, two doubles and nine walks.
He would continue to play baseball in Minor League Baseball for three seasons after playing for the Nationals. Humphries would also manage two teams in the Minors. The first was the Rochester Flour Cities in 1885 and the second was the Syracuse Stars in 1902.