BASEBALL'S Native Americans: Photo - Chief Meyers, Giants (L) and the A's Chief Bender. In 1899, Louis Sockalexis played his last major league league. He was the first Native-American major leaguer. 20 more would follow between 1900-1920. Best known were Meyers, Zach Wheat, Bender, and Jim Thorpe. Meyers started with the Giants in 1909. He also played for the (Brooklyn) Robins and Boston Braves. Meyers was on three Giants' league champions. He was Christy Mathewson's trusted battery mate.