According to biographer Gabriel Schechter, Wiltse was known as “Hooks” because of his ability to field his position. Apparently, “hooking them” was a phrase used to describe a player who could field the ball well.
As a 24-year old rookie for the Giants in 1904, Wiltse won his first twelve decisions, not losing a game until late September. For several years in the early 1900s, he was the lone lefthander in John McGraw’s famed rotation that also included his roommate Christy Mathewson, Joe McGinnity, Red Ames, and Dummy Taylor.
Longest-Running Five-Man Pitching Staffs in Baseball History
1904-1907†New York Giants (4 years)
Iron Joe McGinnity
1979-1982†Oakland A’s (4 years)
1909-1911†Philadelphia A’s (3 years)
1967-1969†Athletics (3 years)
Blue Moon Odom
1976-1978 Los Angeles Dodgers (3 years)
1979-1981 Baltimore Orioles (3 years)