Sunday, December 25, 2016
2016-12-19 Players who stole home twice in a game in the modern era
Q. Who is the only player with a career batting average higher than .350 who is not in the Hall of Fame?
Hint: He holds the record for highest batting average by a qualifying rookie.
Hint: His favorite bat was hickory and was famously stained dark with tobacco juice.
Hint: According to SABR, relief pitching was one of his duties with his first professional team.
Hint: He made it to the majors the same year he became a pro.
A. JOE JACKSON
- He hit .408 in 1911 for the Cleveland Naps (Indians)
- Called his bat “Black Betsy”. It was admired and copied by Babe Ruth. Ruth also claimed he copied Jackson’s batting stance.
- Jackson’s first professional team was the Greenville Spinners of the Carolina Association in 1908, but by August of that year he joined the Philadelphia A’s. See SABR Bio.
FCR - Jake Hopper, Houston
Incorrect answers: Lefty O’Doul, Ross Barnes
Q. Whose record of 8 career National League batting titles did Tony Gwynn tie in 1997?
Hint: When he was elected to the Hall of Fame, no other infielder had ever received more votes.
Hint: He led the NL in RBI one season with a total less than 100. He was more accustomed to better performances, having led the previous year with a total over 125.
Hint: Only he can claim five (5!) career inside-the-park grand slams.
A. HONUS WAGNER
- Wagner’s 8th and final batting title was in 1911. The first was in 1900.
- Elected in the very first Hall of Fame class in 1936. Two outfielders and two pitchers were the only other players elected that year.
- 91 RBI in 1902; 126 in 1901
FCR - Rich Zucker, St. Louis
Incorrect answers: Ty Cobb, Rogers Hornsby, Dave Orr, Mike Schmidt, Stan Musial
Q. Who is the only position player to win Gold Gloves while playing for 4 different teams?
Hint: His last name has only one generation of ancestral lineage.
Hint: He was the first native of his country to receive a Hall of Fame vote.
Hint: He will forever hold the record for the longest hitting streak in Kansas City A’s history.
A. VIC POWER
- GG in 1958 (KCA & CLE), 1959-61 (CLE), 1963 (MIN) and 1964 (MIN & LAA). Ironic since Yankees president Dan Topping once opined, “Our scouting reports rate Power a good hitter, but a poor fielder.”
- His mother’s birth name was Pove and was arbitrarily changed by a teacher who thought the girl was getting her own name wrong.
- Received HOF votes in 1971-72, but not enough to stay on the ballot. First Puerto Rican to receive votes. (Yes, we know it’s not technically a “country”.)
- 22-G hitting streak in 1958 (Tied with Hector Lopez who did it in 1957)
FCR - Fred Worth, Arkadelphia, Arkansas
Incorrect answers: Hector Lopez, Jimmie Foxx, Rocky Colavito, Napoleon Lajoie, Amos Otis, Bert Campaneris, Roberto Alomar, Dane Iorg
Q. What versatile Cantabrigian’s boisterous, enthusiastic style earned him the ironic nickname of “Whispering Bill”?
Hint: He played every position except catcher during his career in the Bigs, including a perfect 1-0 record as a pitcher.
Hint: His talent was not in question, but his loud, opinionated style was a leading reason he played for and was released from or traded away by 11 different professional teams.
Hint: His most outstanding season was 1927, but drew scant attention because his White Sox finished almost 40 games behind you-know-who.
Hint: His hometown Red Sox once held a “Day” for him even though at the time he was playing for the visiting team.
A. BILL BARRETT
- People from Cambridge, Massachusetts are called Cantabrigians. Barrett was born, died and was buried there. He even got to play 117 games for his beloved Red Sox toward the end of his career 1929-30.
FCR - Mark DeLodovico, Rockville, Maryland
Incorrect answers: Bill Dickey, Willie Kamm
Q. What bi-lingual Cantabrigian became an all-scholastic catcher after dropping out of school, but being convinced to return by his work colleague Pie Traynor. (Yes, THAT Pie Traynor.)
Hint: He was first scouted by Jack Barry, formerly of the $100,000 infield.
Hint: He is today in the Holy Cross Hall of Fame, mostly based on an outstanding baseball career in college there.
Hint: In the majors, teammate Dave Bancroft, a future Hall of Famer, sang his praises.
A. DOC GAUTREAU
- Bancroft said “He covers more ground than a thunder shower and makes his plays like lightening.” Bancroft predicted that Doc “will be another Eddie Collins’ in two more years.”
FCR - Dr. David Henly, Stillwater, Minnesota
Incorrect answers: Joe Dugan, Rosy Ryan, Moe Berg, Gene Desautels
Q. Who was the first batter to come to the plate in Fenway Park?
Hint: He was the first Jewish major leaguer born in the state of West Virginia.
Hint: One of his baseball cards is the only known one of its kind and has been controversially valued at as much as $125,000.
Hint: He played in all major leagues possible during his five-year career.
A. GUY ZINN
- B. 13-Feb-1887 in Holbrook, WV
- Card is #11 from the 1914 Baltimore News set
FCR - Ken Auerbach, Bronxville, New York
Incorrect answers: Ezra Midkiff, Dana Wingate, Jake Stahl, Heinie Manush
THEME FOR THE WEEK - Players who stole home twice in a game in the modern era.
First Correct Respondent to Identify Theme – Steve Berman, Bergenfield, NJ (after Power)
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