Sunday, July 3, 2011

June 27-July 3, 2011 Boston major leaguers who have tied for an RBI title

Q.         Who has all 10 of the Top Ten on-base-percentage seasons in Boston Red Sox history?
Hint:     Hardly a wonder since he is #1 all-time in the history of baseball.
Hint:     His career lasted 19 seasons and he received MVP votes in 18 of them.
Hint:     The only year he didn’t get a vote, military service limited him to six games.
Hint:     He finished in the Top Five MVP voting nine times.
SABR Hint:       The word “only” is perfectly apt when saying he only won two MVPs.
Twint:    He won the batting Triple Crown twice and wasn’t voted MVP either year.
A.         Ted Williams (Career OBP .482; MVPs 146, ’49; TCs 1942, ’47)
First Correct Respondent - Paul Vastola, Fanwood, NJ

Q.         Whose .440 average for a season has never been topped in the history of major league baseball?
Hint:     He might have had a triple crown that year, but another Hall of Famer beat him by a mere two runs batted in.
SABR Hint:       He coached baseball at Harvard after retirement.
Twint:    He was the original manager of the franchise that became today’s Baltimore Orioles.
A.         Hugh Duffy (1894; 145 to Sam Thompson’s 147; 1901 Milwaukee Brewers)
FCR -    J.R. Richardson, Clarksville, MD

Q.         Who was the last batter to lead his league in triples and home runs in the same season?
Hint:     He won a AAA league Triple Crown only to be beaten by a teammate the following season for the American League Rookie of the Year Award.
SABR Hint:       He is the only player in major league history to record over 200 hits while hitting 39 or more home runs for three consecutive years.
Twint:    He openly admits he is a big fan of the television show “The Young and the Restless”.
Twint:    He was watching the show when he was informed of his election to the Hall of Fame.
A.         Jim Rice (1978 15 3b, 46 HR; 1974 IL TC, 1975 ROY Fred Lynn; 1977-79)
FCR -    Dave MacEntee, Beacon, NY

Q.         Who was the first man to score a touchdown in the Rose Bowl and play in a World Series?
Hint:     He was inducted to three major Halls of Fame, although none of them in Cooperstown.
SABR Hint:       He coached at state universities in two different states, each holding the distinction of being the first public university in its state.
Twint:    He ended Mickey Mantle’s string of consecutive American League MVPs when he won the award in 1958.
A.         Jackie Jensen (1949 Rose Bowl, 1950 WS; Bay Area Sports Hall of Fame in 1983, the College Football Hall of Fame in 1984, and the Boston Red Sox Hall of Fame in 2000; Coached at Cal and Nevada; 1958 MVP)
FCR -    Kenny Fink, Ocala, FL

Q.         Who was the first shortstop in major league history to lead his league in home runs?
Hint:     He was the first New Mexico native to appear in an All-Star game.
SABR Hint:       He had the most at-bats for the Browns in the 1940s.
Twint:    He signed a $175,000 contract to play in the Mexican League, but was brought back by his father and Browns scout Jack Fournier, narrowly escaping a suspension.
A.         Vern Stephens (24 HR in 1945; ASG 1943; 3,231 AB 1941-47)   [N.B.  Reader Mike Clifford noticed that I had inadvertently omitted the words "in the modern era".  With those out, the correct answer, although not satisfying the hints, would be Herman Long of the 1900 Beaneaters.]
FCR -    Jimmy Goggin, Williamsburg, VA

Q.         Who was the last National League player to wear #42?
Hint:     Craig Biggio and John Valentin were his teammates on the Pirates.
SABR Hint:       He holds the team record for the Angels for most strikeouts by a batter in a season.
Twint:    He is the only Red Sox player to hit three home runs in a game in Fenway Park twice.
A.         Mo Vaughn (#42 for NY Mets 2003-03; Seton Hall Pirates; 181 K in 2000; 3HR @ Fenway 24-Sep-1996 & 30-May-1997;
FCR -    Mike Clifford, Feeding Hills, MA

Q.         Whose 326 total bases in his rookie season lead his league?
Hint:     It made him the runaway winner of the Rookie of the Year Award, easily outdistancing a future Hall of Famer.
SABR Hint:       It was the first time a player from his franchise had been so honored.
Twint:    A switch-hitter from the other major league team in town won the Rookie of the Year award that season as well, just—you know—in the other league.
A.         Walt Dropo (TB 1950; ROY Whitey Ford; Sam Jethroe)
FCR -    Peter Hartwell, Gaithersburg, MD

Q.         What colorful player was on the Dark Blues, Reds, White Stockings, Red Caps, and Red Stockings in spite of, for a time, being black balled?
Hint:     His career spanned three major leagues and the presidential administrations of Ulysses S. Grant, Rutherford B. Hayes, James A. Garfield, Chester A. Arthur and Grover Cleveland.
SABR Hint:       He held the league’s single-season home run lead for four consecutive seasons.
Twint:    He would have had the first ever Triple Crown, but only finished ninth in batting average that year.
A.         Charley Jones (HR lead w/9 1879-82; Near TC 1879)
FCR -    Joe Ullian, Santa Barbara

Q.         Who was the first player to lead the National League in slugging and OPS in his rookie year?
Hint:     His brother, apparently quite the talker, is in the Hall of Fame.
SABR Hint:       He had a two-year salary dispute with his team, not unusual for his time.
Twint:    His nephew was also a major leaguer.
A.         John O’Rourke (Brother Jim O'Rourke; Nephew Queenie O'Rourke)
FCR -    Joe Ullian, Santa Barbara

Q.         Who coached a major league team from being the Baltimore Orioles to the Hilltoppers to the Yankees?
Hint:     He is credited with throwing out eight would-be base stealers in a game.
Hint:     He played on the winning team in the first modern World Series.
Hint:     He captured two of three legs of the Triple Crown one season, but was not close in batting average, in spite of hitting over .300.
SABR Hint:       Christy Mathewson organized a benefit for him as his health deteriorated.
Twint:    The health of both men was not good.  They both died later that year.
A.         Duke Farrell (11-May-1897; WS 1903; American Association 1891)
FCR -    Dave MacEntee, Beacon, NY

WEEKLY THEME – Boston major leaguers who have tied for an RBI title

 - Charley Jones, Boston Red Caps      62

 - Hugh Duffy, Boston Reds               110
 - Duke Farrell, Boston Reds              110

 - Ted Williams, Boston Red Sox        159
 - Vern Stephens, Boston Red Sox     159

 - Vern Stephens, Boston Red Sox     144     Bio
 - Walt Dropo, Boston Red Sox          144

 - Jackie Jensen, Boston Red Sox      142
 - Ray Boone, [Detroit Tigers]             142     Bio

 - Jim Rice, Boston Red Sox              126     Bio
 - Cecil Cooper, [Milwaukee Brewers]  126     Bio

 - Mo Vaughn, Boston Red Sox          126
 - Albert Belle, [Cleveland Indians]      126

First Correct Respondent to Identify Theme – Joe Ullian, Santa Barbara

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