Sunday, February 19, 2012

February 13-19, 2012 Cougar alumni who became All-Stars in the majors

Q.         Which Pittsburgh Pirates Cy Young Award winner has a son currently on a major league roster?
Hint:     He is a pitching coach in the Diamondbacks’ organization.
Twint:    In his thirteen year pitching career, he once led the league in wins and another season led in losses.
A.         Doug Drabek (CYA 1990; Kyle Drabek; 1990: 22-6, 19993:  9-18)
FCR -    Tim Hagerty, Portland, OR

Q.         Who came closest to Barry Larkin in the most recent Hall of Fame balloting?
Hint:     He famously refused to give T.K. the ball.
Hint:     He was the first Blue Jays pitcher to win 20 games in a season.
Twint:    His 21-6 record that year was only good for fifth in the Cy Young Award voting.
A.         Jack Morris (382 votes 66.7% to Larkin’s 495 and 86.4%; wouldn’t come out of G 7 of the 1991 WS, eventually resulting in his team’s victory; 21-6 in 1992)
FCR -    J. J. McCoy, Washington, DC

Q.         Who is the only Mariners pitcher to start a season 8-0?
Hint:     That eighth win was his hundredth career victory.
Twint:    In 2010 he re-joined the Dodger organization, this time as a minor league pitching instructor.
A.         Aaron Sele (8-0 in 2001; Dodger pitcher coach)
FCR -    Randall Chandler, Germantown, TN

Q.         Whom did Joe Nathan pass to become the Minnesota Twins career saves leader?
Hint:     He surrendered a devastating 10th-inning home run to Dave Henderson in Game Six of the 1986 World Series.
Hint:     For the next quarter hour, sales of “We Broke the Curse!” tee shirts soared.
Twint:    He was picked in the 37th round of the 1980 draft as a third baseman, but signed after being picked in the 3rd round of the 1983 draft as a pitcher.
A.         Rick Aguilera (passed by Nathan 10-Aug-2011; Hendu HR 25-Oct-1986)
FCR -    Brian Wood, Pacific Grove, CA

Q.         Who played the “corner” for eight years with the same three teammates?
Hint:     They were all at one time All-Stars.
Hint:     In another example of teammate solidarity, he shared one of baseball’s highest awards with not one, but two teammates.
Twint:    He is #5 on the Los Angeles Dodgers career home run list.
Twint:    His avian nickname belies his speed.
A.         Ron Cey (Dodger IF mate w- Bill Russell [SS], Davey Lopes [2B] & Steve Garvey [1B]; 1981 WS MVP w- Pedro Guerrero & Steve Yeager; “The Penguin”)
FCR -    Peter Mitchell, Mission Viejo, CA

Q.         Who holds the record for hits in his rookie season by an Angel? (This refers to the major league franchise—never mind the city designation.)
Hint:     He was only an All-Star as a rookie, in spite of fifteen more productive seasons in the bigs.
Twint:    His nickname reflected a fictional theme park.
A.         Wally Joyner (172 H in 1986, finishing a close second behind Jose Canseco in the ROY voting; “Wally World”, a parody of Disneyland in the movie Vacation)
FCR -    Jeff Bergida, Albany, NY

Q.         Which future Hall of Famer spurned over 100 college football scholarships to sign with the Expos as a shortstop?
Hint:     His first All-Star appearance came as a left fielder, replacing Pete Rose.
Hint:     After breaking his thumb in an outfield collision, his team moved him to what they thought would be a safer position behind the place.
Hint:     He is the only National Leaguer to appear in 2,000 games at catcher.
Hint:     He was the first Expos player to hit twenty home runs in four consecutive seasons.
Hint:     He was the first post-expansion catcher to throw out the same would-be base stealer thrice in a game.
Hint:     He was the catcher who stopped Davey Lopes’s consecutive bases stolen streak at 38.
Twint:    He hit an Opening Day, extra-inning, walk-off home run in his first day as a New York Met.
A.         Gary Carter who passed away this afternoon (ASG 15-Jul-1975; Fracture in 1976; 2,056 NL G @ C; 20 HR 1977-80; 3 CS Lenny Randle 15-Apr-1978; Lopes CS 24-Aug-1975; Mets HR 09‑Apr‑1985)
FCR -    Fred Worth, Arkadelphia, AR

Q.         Who was the first baseman in what Sports Illustrated dubbed “the greatest infield ever”?
Hint:     He might be the most boring player interview in the television era.
Twint:    Turns out Rickey Henderson knew about this guy’s metal head plate all along.
Twint:    He was Henderson’s teammate on three different teams in the majors.
A.         John Olerud (SI 06-Sep-1999 w/ Mets teammates Edgardo Alfonzo, Rey Ordonez & Robin Ventura)
FCR -    Russ Lake, Champaign, IL

Q.         Who was the first Mariner to hit a home run and steal home in the same game?
Hint:     He was once picked by a Chicago newspaper as the second-best-looking major leaguer, after Jim Palmer.
Twint:    His only World Series hit came as a pinch-hitter for Hall of Famer Don Sutton.
Twint:    His brother has the most career plate appearances among Major Leaguers with a perfect on-base percentage.
A.         Tom Paciorek (HR/SBH 05-Jul-1980, Chone Figgins also HR/SBH 28-Jul-2010; WS H 17‑Oct‑1974; brother John 3-3, 2 BB in his only MLB game 29-Sep-1963)
FCR -    Jeff Korell, Van Nuys, CA

Q.         Who won the Padres Chairman’s Award ten years after Tony Gwynn won the inaugural one?
Hint:     He is one of six pitchers to surrender an Opening Day home run to Barry Bonds.
Hint:     When he won the club’s Clyde McCullough Award, it ended a string of four seasons where Trevor Hoffman had been the honoree.
Hint:     Hoffman also won it the next two years.
Hint:     Like former teammate David Cone, he had an aneurysm in his pitching arm.
Twint:    After being repeatedly pounded in spring training, his manager opined, “Never in my life have I seen baseballs get that small that fast.”
A.         Woody Williams (Chairman’s Award; Bonds HR 02-Apr-2001; McCullough Award; Bruce Bochy quote from spring training 1999)
FCR -    Dave Serota, Kalamazoo

Q.         Who was the first Red Sox pitcher to allow 30 home runs in a season?
Hint:     He can boast of being the winning pitcher in the All-Star game.
Twint:    He is the only player to win a World Series ring and an NBA championship ring.
A.         Gene Conley (33 HR in 1961; W 1955 All-Star Game; 1957 WS, NBA Championships 1959-61)
FCR -    Randall Chandler, Germantown, TN

Q.         Who hit two home runs in Team USA’s gold medal-winning games against Cuba?
Hint:     He is a three-time winner of the Cool Papa Bell Award.
Twint:    He played high school, college and major league baseball in the same city.
A.         Michael Bourn (HR in 2006; The James "Cool Papa" Bell Legacy Award is given annually to the SB leaders in the NL & AL; Nimitz High School, University of Houston, Houston Astros)
FCR -    Jared Lobdell, Elizabethtown, PA

Q.         Who won division titles with both the Cubs and the White Sox in years when neither team went to the World Series?
Hint:     He was the 2001 Mountain West Conference Coach of the Year.
Twint:    He trails only Harmon Killebrew in career home runs by an Idaho native.
Twint:    Willie Stargell and Manny Sanguillen were teammates of both him and his father.
A.         Vance Law (1983 White Sox & 1989 Cubs, 71 HR to Killebrew’s 573, father Vern)
FCR -    Gary Sarnoff, Arlington, VA

Q.         Who is the only player to amass sixty career saves for the Cincinnati Reds before the save became an official statistic?
Hint:     He was the victim of identity theft later in life, and his death was erroneously reported in 2007, when the identity thief passed away.
Twint:    He and Jim Brosnan were the first teammates to both earn 15 (retroactively awarded) saves in the same season.
A.         Bill Henry (64 S 1960-65 [S official in 1969]; 15 S w/Brosnan in 1961)
FCR -    Fred Brillhart, Mechanicsburg, PA

WEEKLY THEME – Cougar alumni who became All-Stars in the majors.

Player           School                           All-Star years
Aguilera      Brigham Young       1991-93
Bourn*        Houston                  2010
Cey            Washington State    1974-79
Conley        Washington State    1954, 55, 59
Drabek       Houston                  1994
Henry          Houston                  1960
Joyner        Brigham Young       1986
Law            Brigham Young       1988
Morris         Brigham Young       1981, 84, 85, 87, 91
Olerud        Washington State    1993, 2001
Paciorek     Houston                  1981
Sele            Washington State    1998, 2000
Williams      Houston                  2003

*Bourn’s high school’s mascot was also the Cougars.  Aguilera and Williams come with the Lions and Bobcats respectively.

First Correct Respondent to Identify Theme – Joe Ullian, Santa Barbara, CA (after the Cey question)

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