Monday, November 21, 2016

Nov 14-20, 2016 Born in Brooklyn; Played for Brooklyn


Q. Only one pitcher in history has had more than 2 no-hitters, more than 2 World Series rings AND more than 2 Cy Young Awards.  Who is he?
Hint: His award-winning biographer limned, “... he held the ball without his thumb, rolling it off his uncommonly long fingers with such velocity and spin that when the ball met the wind, the  air cried.”
Hint: Harry Bright was the 15th strikeout.
- 4 no-hitters:
- 4 World Series rings:
-  3 Cy Young awards [Each one unanimous]:
1963 NL
1965 NL
1966 NL
- Line is from Jane Leavy’s masterpiece, “Sandy Koufax, a Lefty’s Legacy”.
- On 02-Oct-1963, he set the record for most strikeouts in a World Series game.  The unfortunate Bright was pinch-hitting for Yankee pitcher Steve Hamilton.(I remember exactly where I was!) [The record was broken by Bob Gibson precisely 5 years to the day later.]
FCR - Kellen Nielson, Blanding, Utah
Incorrect answers:  Mordecai 3 finger Brown, Pedro Martinez, Randy Johnson, Nolan Ryan

Q. Who owns the highest cumulative batting average for career games played in the 19th  century, 1871-1900?
Hint: His advice for offensive success in baseball was strictly geographical.
Hint: His record still stands for a season with the most hits without hitting even a single home run.
Hint: He was the first player to earn $10,000 in a season for his baseball undertakings.
Hint: He had a lot, but an additional 68 hits would have suited him just fine.
- Keeler hit .381 with 1,657 hits in 4,114 at-bats over 962 games 1892 through 1900.
- Possibly baseball’s most famous quote, “Hit ‘em where they ain’t.” means placing hits where they are the most difficult to be reached by defensive players.
- 239 H in 1897, 0 HR
- $10,000 in each of 1903 & 1904 playing for the New York Highlanders, more than triple what he had been earning.  (The Yankees have been doing this for a long time.)
- Career hit total 2,932.
FCR - David Johnson, Swarthmore, Pennsylvania
Incorrect answers:  Cap Anson, Jesse Burkett

Q. Who led the 1927 Yankees in pitching victories?
Hint: He appeared in vaudeville plays and was a mortician during the off season.
Hint: He had 100 career RBI, but never had a home run.
Hint: Perhaps stating the obvious, he once opined, "The secret of success as a P lies in getting a job with the Yankees."
Hint: He lost postseason games to the St. Louis Cardinals in two seasons, playing for different teams.
- 22-7 also lead the AL
- Had exactly 100 RBI; exactly 0 HR
- He won 3 World Series with the Yankees, but lost 3 World Series with the Yankees
- Lost to STL in 1926 WS playing for NYY.  Lost WS to STL in 1931 pitching for PHA.
FCR - Jim Hindley, Burlington, Ontario
Incorrect answers:  Urban Shocker, Lefty Gomez, Herb Pennock

Q. Which Newfie manquée played for the Royals before he played with the Cubs?
Hint: Once, after hitting a home run in a Pacific Coast League game, slid into second base, cartwheeled to third base then crawled home.
Hint: He trained Army cadets in tank maintenance at West Point Academy during WWII.
Hint: In his only regular-season game appearance for one of his major league teams, he pinch-hit for one of the team’s star players and promptly hit into a double play.  The player who took his place on that roster went on to win an MVP.
- Parents had moved from Newfoundland shortly before he was born in the U.S.  Played for the 1945-46 NBL’s Rochester Royals.
- PCL antics in 1952, playing for the AAA Los Angeles Angels.
- Single game for BRO:  01-May-1949.  Pinch-hit for Carl Furillo.  Was replaced on the roster by Don Newcombe.
FCR - Paul Goodson, Cheyenne
Incorrect answers:  Ernie Banks, Bob Shawkey, Andy Pafko, Jimmy Piersall, Ben Zobrist

Q. Who had the best postseason batting average for the Senators when they won the World Series?
Hint: He and a teammate were the first American League players to hit back-to-back home runs twice in the same game.
Hint: He and a different teammate played together for 18 seasons, longest ever for teammates until Trammel/Whitaker passed them.
Hint: He barely qualifies for this week’s theme.
- Hit .385 in the 1924 WS
- B-2-B HR’s 2X with Hall of Famer Goose Goslin, 26-May-1930, in consecutive innings!
- Teammate of Hall of Famer Sam Rice for 18 yrs., 1915-32
- Theme qualifier… ?
FCR - Fred Worth, Arkadelphia, Arkansas
Incorrect answers:  Clyde Milan, Bucky Harris, Sam Rice, Goose Goslin, Roger Peckinpaugh

Q. Who was the youngest player ever to homer in the majors?
Hint: His victim that day was a future All-Star teammate.
Hint: He ran his major league home run total to 31 over his 9-year career, once victimizing Hall of Famer Warren Spahn.
Hint: When he signed to become a pro, his “bonus” was the 25¢ fee for the ferry.
Hint: His nickname originally was due to his erratic throwing, but he eventually justified it with his ability to hit to all fields.
Hint: Following his career in the majors, he set the Southern Association record of reaching base 20 times in a row.
- First HR 20-Aug-1945, 17 yrs. 4 mo. 14 days old
- Preacher Roe surrendered Brown’s 1st HR, playing for PIT.
- Teammates and coaches called him “Buckshot”.
- He played for 3 teams in the Southern Association from 1955-59.
[Reader Frank DiPrima passed along this anecdote:  A Buckshot Tommy Brown story that I remember Red Barber telling more than once on the radio: Dodger broadcasts were for a few years sponsored by Old Gold cigarettes.  When a Dodger hit a home run, Barber and his sidekick, Connie Desmond, called the dinger an “Old Goldie.”  When the home run was hit at Ebbets Field, the broadcasters, whose booth was just above the screen behind home plate, would slide a carton of Old Golds down the screen for the homering player.  When Tommy Brown hit his first, at either 16 or 17, Leo Durocher conspicuously took the carton away from him, telling Tommy he was too young to smoke.]
FCR - Kenny Fink, The Villages, Florida
Incorrect answers:  Tony Conigliaro, Jackie Jensen

Q. What post-deadball-era batter won a home run title the same year his strikeout total was in single digits?
Hint: He enjoyed the distinction of being the last 20th century National Leaguer to have 25 or more at-bats in a single World Series without a strikeout or a base-on-balls.
Hint: In a sterling year where he led his league in hits, doubles, homers, slugging, OPS, OPS+ and total bases, he lost the MVP award to a player who was clever enough to play for the pennant winner.
Hint: His franchise from sought greener pastures just a year after he managed the team.
- Hit 28 HR’s in 1945 and struck out exactly nine (9!) times.  Both marks paced the NL that WWII-influenced season.
- WS marks set in 1948.
- Stat-dominant season 1945.  Lost MVP to the CubsPhil Cavarretta.
- Holmes was player/manager for part of 1951 and managed the team in 1952 but did not play.  Braves moved from Boston to Milwaukee in 1953.
FCR - Richard LeTarte, Massachusetts
Incorrect answers:  Ted Williams, Eddie Mathews, Johnny Mize, Joe DiMaggio, Bill Rigney
Q. Who was the first switch-hitter ever to come to bat in the major leagues?
Hint: His gloveless defensive prowess earned him baseball’s most unusual nickname.
Hint: He was elected president of the original major league while still a player.
Hint: He pitched in 6 of his 14 seasons.
Hint: Though he was a teetotaler, he opened a saloon.
Hint: His  closest similarity score is that of the frequently overlooked,  double-unique Chippy McGarr
- His debut was 18-May-1871.  Many players who had debuted that day and earlier that month do not have their “handedness” information available.  Ferguson, however. is the first known switch-hitter.
- Memorable game 04-Jul-1870 in front of the home Brooklyn crowd.
- The position was largely ceremonial but Ferguson conducted league business as he traveled to the new National Association’s games during the season and was very successful in ridding the league of gambling.
- Ferguson quit the bar business after a fight with a drunken friend when Ferguson refused to serve him. “This life (the one with alcohol) is too unclean for me,” he explained.
FCR - Art Springsteen, Sunapee, New Hampshire
Incorrect answers:  Monte Ward, Albert Spalding, Tim Keefe

THEME FOR THE WEEK - Select players who were born in Brooklyn and played for Brooklyn.

Brown B. 06-Dec-1927 (1944 -45, 47-51 Dodgers)
Connors B. 10-Apr-1921 (1949 Dodgers - 1 game)
Ferguson B. 31-Jan-1845 (1872-74 Atlantics)
Holmes B. 29-Mar-1917 (1952 Dodgers - 31 games)
Hoyt         B. 09-Sep-1899 (1932, 37, 38 Dodgers)
Judge B. 25-May-1894 (1933 Dodgers - 42 games)
Koufax B. 30-Dec-1935 (1955-57 Dodgers)

First Correct Respondent to Identify Theme – Bill Carle, Lee’s Summit, Missouri (after Brown)

Incorrect theme guesses:
Tuesday   - HOF players whose last name starts with K

Wed - HOFers born in Brooklyn

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