Sunday, January 11, 2015
January 5-11, 2015 Select prime numbers retired
Q. Which Detroit Tiger won the American League MVP Award between Hank Greenberg’s two MVP seasons?
Hint: He is the only player to make the American League starting lineups in the first six All-Star games.
Hint: He was the first player elected to the Hall of Fame using the “runoff” rules.
Twint: He was one of the “G-Men”.
A. CHARLIE GEHRINGER (MVP 1937, Greenberg 1935 and ‘40; Started 1933-38 ASG; There was no first ballot winner in 1949, and a complicated “runoff” ballot occurred where only Gehringer made the cut; Gehringer/Goslin/Greenberg played together winning ’35 WS)
FCR - David Ramsden, Barcelona, Spain
Incorrect answers: Goode Goslin, Hank Greenberg, Hal Newhouser
Q. Who is the only Brave to win a league Most Valuable Player Award more than once?
Hint: His were consecutive.
Hint: He led his league in RBI both seasons and in homers the next two consecutive years.
Twint: Nolan Ryan said of him “I can’t imagine Joe DiMaggio was a better all-around player.”
A. DALE MURPHY (MVP 1982-3 (list of multiple winners); led RBI 109/121 then HR 36/37 1984-5; Ryan’s full quote: "I can't imagine Joe DiMaggio was a better all-around player than Dale Murphy.")
FCR - Dean Kloner, New York, NY
Incorrect answers: Henry Aaron, Eddie Mathews, Warren Spahn
Q. Who was the first pitcher to win an ERA title for a major league team domiciled on the west coast?
Hint: He was the winning pitcher in the only All-Star game he ever played in and did it on his home field.
Hint: He was the first pitcher with 100 career saves in Baltimore Orioles’ history.
Hint: He and a teammate are the only pair to combine in a losing no-hit effort against an American League team.
Twint: The 137th career home run he surrendered was Mickey Mantle’s 500th.
Twint: Unfortunately, he is probably best remembered for an occurrence that never occurred.
Twint: He is the Giants pitcher in Danny Kay’s immortal “The Dodger Song”.
A. STU MILLER (ERA title 1958 for SFG; 1961 ASG; Exactly 100 Sv for BAL; With Steve Barber no-hit DET 30-Apr-1967; Mantle HR 14-May-1967; Stumbled awkwardly from the mound during a wind-up during his only All-Star appearance. It was at Candlestick Park on a day [11‑Jul‑1961] when winds were swirling. A balk was called, but Miller always claimed that was NOT blown off the mound.)
FCR - Richard Tharp, Gaithersburg, MD
Incorrect answers: Hoyt Wilhelm, Arthur Rhodes
Q. Who is the only Houston Astro to win the Rookie of the Year Award?
Hint: He is also the only Astro to win MVP despite breaking his wrist after playing only 110 games that season.
Hint: He and his American League counterpart that were born on the same day.
Hint: He holds the Astros single season records for home runs, batting average, on base percentage, slugging percent, OPS, games played, runs scored, total bases, bases on balls, intentional bases on balls, sacrifice flies and at bats per home run.
Twint: He wasn’t an “A”, but he was a “Killer”.
A. JEFF BAGWELL (ROY 1991; MVP 1994 strike-shortened season, he broke his wrist on a pitch by Andy Benes 10-Aug-1994; AL MVP Frank Thomas born 27-May-1968; HOU team records 47 HR, .368 BA, .454 OBP, .750 SLG, 1.201 OPS, 162 GP, 152 R, 363 TB, 148 BB, 27 IBB, 13 SF & 10.3 AB/HR; "Killer B’s” Biggio and Bagwell plus several others such as Berkman, Beltran, Bell, Berry; Hall of Fame voting percentage in the most recent election)
FCR - Mark Jones, Birmingham, AL
Incorrect answers: Craig Biggio, Ken Caminiti, Curt Blefery, Jim Wynn, Glenn Davis, Joe Morgan, Cesar Cedeno
Q. Name the only National League infielder who passed these statistical thresholds: 200 home runs + 400 stolen bases + 600 doubles.
Hint: One year he collected 88 RBI hitting in the leadoff spot.
Hint: He is the only player from his franchise to win a Gold Glove Award as a second baseman.
Hint: He did it in four consecutive seasons.
Twint: He will be the first player inducted into the Hall of Fame as an Astro.
A. CRAIG BIGGIO (291 HR, 414 SB, 668 2b [Among ALL players, Barry Bonds, Rickey Henderson & Paul Molitor also qualify.]; 88 RBI in 1998; GG 1994-97; HOF 2105)
FCR - Neil Cohen, Brooklyn, NY
Incorrect answers: Joe Morgan, Chase Utley, Ryne Sandberg, Jeff Kent
Q. Who holds the record for most consecutive seasons leading his league in stolen bases?
Hint: When the streak ended he never led the league again.
Hint: Ironically, he once contributed to his team not making the playoffs due to a base running error, leaving his team in the odd position of finishing ½ game out of first.
Twint: After he was released by the Red Sox, he ended his career despite a “fill in the amount” offer from the Yankees.
Twint: His reply read, “Dear Mr. Steinbrenner, thank you very much for your offer but I just get released once in my lifetime.”
A. LUIS APARICIO (SB leader 9 seasons 1956-64 [In only 4 did he also lead in CS.]; 02-Oct-1972 blunder left them ½ game behind in a strike shortened season where games could not be made up; SABR BIO regarding the interchange with Steinbrenner mentions that he considered playing another year)
FCR - Howard Wasserman, Pembroke Pines, FL
Incorrect answers: Tim Raines, Rickey Henderson, Vince Coleman, Maury Wills
Q. Who was the first native of Venezuela to win the All-Star Game MVP award?
Hint: He once worked a walk against Rick Wise, turning a perfect game into a mere no-hitter.
Hint: He was one of the inaugural inductees into the Latino Baseball Hall of Fame.
Twint: He claimed he didn’t spit in the umpire’s face.
Twint: He once was tied up and robbed at his farm in Venezuela during the 2002 World Series, forcing him to miss part of a game (his biggest complaint that day)?
A. DAVE CONCEPCION (Wise BB 23-Jun-1971; Latino HOF 2010 inductees included, among others, Luis Aparicio, Rod Carew, Juan Marichal, Tony Perez, Orlando Cepeda, and Roberto Clemente; b6 BB 23‑Jun‑1971; Spitting story; Robbery)
FCR - Dave Williams Glastonbury, CT
Incorrect answers: Orlando Cepeda, Omar Vizquel, Zoilo Versalles, Fernando Valenzuela, Luis Aparicio, Juan Marichal
Q. Name the last National League pitcher to win thirty games in a season.
Hint: He helped lead his team to a World Series victory that year, though he gave up the only home runs the opponents hit.
Hint Granted, each was hit by a future Hall of Famer.
Twint: Both he and his brother were the only winning pitchers for their team in that series.
Twint: In the last World Series appearance of his career, he gave up Joe DiMaggio’s second career World Series home run—a shot that sealed the victory for that game.
A. DIZZY DEAN (30-7, 1934, only NL’ers Mathewson, Alexander and McGinnity won 30 in the modern era, all before Dean; 1934 WS Hank Greenberg game 1, and Charlie Gehringer game 5; He won games 1 & 7, brother Paul Dean won G 3 & 6; 1938 WS game 2 NYY win 6-3 over CHC, DiMaggio belting a 2-run shot off Dean in the top of the 9th.)
FCR - Bob Flynn, Chandler, AZ
Incorrect answers: Denny McLain, Warren Spahn, Denny McLain, Pete Alexander, Carl Hubbell, Lefty Grove
Q. Who was the only qualifying pitcher with a season ERA under 2.00 in the 1950s?
Hint: He once hitch-hiked to get home from the airport with two teammates who would become Hall of Famers.
Hint: Ironically, home had been friendly to him that year. His record was 13-0.
Twint: He surrendered pitcher Ellis Kinder’s only career home run, a grand slam.
Twint: While pinch-hitting for Roger Maris, Carroll Hardy hit his first career home run off him.
A. BILLY PIERCE (1.97 ERA on 1955; Hitch-hiked home with Willie McCovey & Orlando Cepeda after flying back from Los Angeles 03-Oct-1962; Kinder HR 06-Aug-1950; Hardy HR 18-May-1958)
FCR - Blake Sherry, Dublin, OH
Incorrect answers: Hoyt Wilhelm, Jim Konstanty, Whitey Ford, Elroy Face, Dean Chance, Bob Friend, Sandy Koufax
Q. Who was the next New York Yankees to win an American League batting title after Mickey Mantle’s in 1956?
Hint: No Yankee ever hit more doubles in a season than he did.
Hint: His restaurant became a favorite destination in the Midwest.
Twint: His record of six grand slams in a season was tied by Travis Hafner in 2006.
FCR - Andrew Distler, New York, NY
Incorrect answers: Yogi Berra, Lou Piniella, Dave Winfield, Paul O’Neill, Moose Skowron, Bobby Richardson
Q. Who was the last first baseman to bat over .380 for a season (qualified for batting title)?
Hint: He was expressly named after the doctor who delivered him.
Hint: When speaking of how a player will adjust his position to defend against him he said, “It goes right by his glove and I laugh.”
Twint: A Hall of Fame pitcher said of him: “He has no weakness as a hitter. Anything you throw he can handle.”
A. ROD CAREW (1977 BA .388 with George Sisler (twice) and Bill Terry prior to that; Born in Panama, named after Dr. Rodney Cline; Catfish Hunter quote from Carew’s HOF web page; Full quote from Bref Bullpen: "I get a kick out of watching a team defense me. A player moves two steps in one direction and I hit it two steps in the other direction. It goes right by his glove and I laugh.")
FCR - Mark Jones, Birmingham, AL
Incorrect answers: Norm Cash, Bill Terry, Babe Herman, Andres Galarraga, George Sisler, John Olerud
Q. Who was the first of Fernando Valenzuela’s five consecutive All-Star whiffs?
Hint: His 3,000th career hit it was off a (future) Hall of Fame pitcher and it drove in a (future) Hall of Famer.
Hint: In a 22-season career, he only led the league once in a Triple Crown category and only once finished as high as third in MVP voting.
Twint: He was the first player to collect 100 RBI in a season after his 40th birthday.
A. DAVE WINFIELD ([ERRATUM!: Winfield was Fernando’s 1st K in 1984 ASG, but that was a 1-inning appearance. Valenzuela’s famous string of 5 Ks came in the 1986 game where Don Mattingly was the 1st victim.]; RBI drove in Kirby Puckett, video: 16-Sep-1993; 1979 NL RBI leader with 118; Career Stats and MVP votes; 108 RBI 1992, Harold Baines had 103 in 1999 at age 40)
FCR - Doug Greenwald, San Francisco, CA
Incorrect answers: Eddie Murray, Wade Boggs, Eddie Murray, Rickey Henderson, Paul Molitor
Q. Who hit the first postseason inside-the-park homer in Yankee stadium?
Hint: The bases were empty, but it broke a tie and was the eventual game winner.
Hint: He was the first Brooklyn player to lead his league in on base percentage.
Hint: It was the only major category in his playing career where he put up a league leading number.
Twint: As a successful Hall of Fame manager, the only season he won 100 games his team finished second.
A. CASEY STENGEL (1923 WS G1 top 9th inning and, famously, it was the first homer of any kind in The House That Ruth Built; Video of the “fast footed feat; Brooklyn Robins 1914 OBP .404; NYY1954 103-51 second to CLE 111-43)
FCR - Larry Farin, Plano, TX
Incorrect answers: Pee Wee Reese, Dolph Camilli, Carl Furillo
SATURDAY AD IN
Q. Who was the first Brave to hit forty home runs in a season?
Hint: He is also the only Brave to have done so in three consecutive seasons.
Hint: He won two World Series rings, one each for helping to beat the teams that now have most World Championships in their respective league.
Twint: The last hit of his career was in the 1968 World Series against a future Hall of Fame pitcher.
A. EDDIE MATHEWS (47 HR 1953; 47/40/41 1953-5; Rings with the 1957 MLN over NYY, and 1968 DET over STL; Game 4 single 2nd inning against Bob Gibson)
FCR - Bill Deane, Cooperstown, NY
Incorrect answers: Dale Murphy, Joe Adcock, Davey Johnson
Q. Who is the oldest pitcher ever to win a league Most Valuable Player Award?
Hint: The last team he played for was one he had played for earlier in his career, but in a different capacity.
Twint: He was the first pitcher to accumulate fifteen postseason saves.
Twint: Lon Simmons said to him during the 2004 HOF induction speeches, "OK, you can stop taking the ugly pills. They're not working."
A. DENNIS ECKERSLEY (MVP 1992, 38 yrs. Old; Played for BOS 1978-84 as a starter. Finished in the bullpen in 1998.)
FCR - Adrian Fung, Toronto, ON
Incorrect answers: Barry Bonds, Rollie Fingers, Don Newcombe, Sandy Koufax
Q. Who was the National League player representative during the 1994-95 players' strike?
Hint: He once broke a rib vomiting on a team flight.
Twint: He briefly went on the DL, but still had five starts in every calendar month that season and finished second in the Cy Young Award voting…
Twint: …a step lower than he had finished the prior season.
FCR - Mary Shea, Milwaukee, WI
Incorrect answers: David Cone, Joe Girardi, John Smoltz
SUNDAY AD OUT
Q. Who is the only American-born Hall of Famer to die outside the United States?
Hint: He was the last player to hit a grand slam at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
Hint: He was replaced by Rick Monday.
Twint: He hit Opening Day home runs twice (different years).
A. DON DRYSDALE (Died 03-Jul-1993 in Montreal; GS off Don Nottebart 09-Aug-1961; Monday replaced him as a Dodgers announcer; Opening Day HRs 11-Apr-1959 & 12-Apr-1965)
FCR - Warren Campbell, Toronto, ON
Incorrect answers: Earl Weaver, Ed Delahanty
WEEKLY THEME – Prime retired numbers:
Retiree # Team
Gehringer 2 Tigers
Murphy 3 Braves
Bagwell 5 Astros
Biggio 7 Astros
Aparicio 11 White Sox
Concepcion 13 Reds
Dean 17 Cardinals
Pierce 19 White Sox
Mattingly 23 Yankees
Carew 29 Angels
Maddux 31 Cub & Braves
Stengel 37 Yankees & Mets
Mathews 41 Braves
Eckersley 43 A’s
Glavine 47 Braves
Drysdale 53 Dodgers
First Correct Respondent to Identify Theme – Carl Morton, Vernal, UT
Incorrect theme guesses:
Monday - Consecutive MVP winners
- Guys famous for being quiet
Tuesday - Players eligible for the Hall of Fame in 2015
- Eligible players not voted into the Hall with this year’s class
Wed - Players who have led their position in games played for a 10-year period while winning at least one gold glove
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