Sunday, December 25, 2011

December 19-25, 2011 Major leaguers for the Yankees and Red Sox

This week’s trivia is the repeat of a quiz given yesterday by reader Reverend Gerry Beirne at a SABR regional meeting in New England last month.  We thank him for his willingness to share it.  As a Christmas gift, we will share with you in advance his theme:  "Men who played for both the Red Sox and the Yankees."  With that head-start, you’ll likely not need many  hints.  If you do, check Twitter.

Q.         No Yankee has ever had a higher single season batting average than this former Boston stalwart.
Twint:    He holds a number of other records for both teams.
A.         Babe Ruth (.393 in 1923 [Ironically, Ruth lost the batting title by 10 points that year, to the Tigers’ Harry Heilman.])
First Correct Respondent - Alan Work, White Plains, NY

Q.         Like Tiger Woods, his mother is from Thailand, so why are these two men not called Thai-American?
Twint:    This year he passed Lou Gehrig in career hits.
A.         Johnny Damon (Career hits)
FCR -    Jay Berman, Manhattan Beach, CA

Q.         In 1986, these two teams swapped a black right-handed designated hitter for a black left-handed designated hitter.  Name the players.
Twint:    One had been an MVP and the other ended and as a .293 career batter.
A.         Don Baylor and Mike Easler
FCR -    David Krassin, New York

Q.         One of very few pitchers to win twenty games [in a season] for three different teams, he called Bill Carrigan "the best manager I ever played for."
Twint:    He is more famous for an on-field accident.
A.         Carl Mays (Pete Alexander, Gaylord Perry & Roger Clemens also won 20 for 3)
FCR -    Alain Usereau, Montreal, QC

Q.         One of our former regional speakers, this zany left-handed pitcher wrote A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Cooperstown.
Twint:    The Dodgers recruited him when he was fifteen years old, believing he was eighteen.
A.         Mickey McDermott (Funny Thing)
FCR -    Henry Hascup, Lodi, NJ

Q.         Other major leaguers have been born on Christmas Day, perhaps even in a taxicab on the way to the hospital. But this Hall of Famer is the only one traded for Eric Plunk - twice.
Twint:    His career stolen bases are more than the entire Red Sox franchise total - in history!
A.         Rickey Henderson (Further research reveals that his stolen base total merely [sic] surpassed the Red Sox total during his time in the majors before joining the Sox.)
FCR -    Frank DiPrima, Morristown, NJ

Q.         The 1967 "Impossible Dream" pennant would not have happened without this catcher who hit .147 for them that year.
Twint:    He was the first black man to play for the Yankees.
A.         Elston Howard (Howard broke up future teammate Billy Rohr’s no-hit bid with a single in the bottom of the ninth in the first week of the season as the Sawks beat the Yankees on 14‑Apr.  Also, his block of Ken Berry at home plate on Jose Tartabull's throw completed a game-ending double play at Comiskey Park on 27-Aug.)
FCR -    Bill Carle, Lee's Summit, MO

Q.         The Yanks acquired this scrappy third baseman from the Angels in a trade for Bill Castro, well after his days of Fenway adventure.
Twint:    He won the International League Manager of the Year Award in 1991, guiding the Pawtucket Red Sox.
A.         Butch Hobson
FCR -    Arieh Siegal, Austin, TX

Q.         With Boston, he twice lost 20 games (and hit five home runs); with New York he four times won 20 games (and belted 31 round trippers).
Twint:    Several people have been waiting for this answer all week.
A.         Red Ruffing
FCR -    Bill Carle, Lee's Summit, MO

Q.         The brother of a major league infielder, this switch-hitting left-handed pitcher went 62-38 in five Boston campaigns after being 15-15 in his sole season in Gotham.
Twint:    A former saloon owner and a superstitious player, he wouldn't shave on days he pitched.
A.         Jesse Tannehill (Brother Lee)
FCR -    Henry Hascup, Lodi, NJ

Q.         Hard core fans will remember with mixed emotion the Bay State born hurler whose ninth inning wild pitch gave Boston the 1904 pennant, even though he had won more games that season than any other pitcher in modern history.
Twint:    His family name was pronounced the same as if you’d asked a Wisconsin hippie what he wanted on his hamburger.
A.         Jack Chesbro (“Cheese, Bro!”)
FCR -    Arieh Siegal, Austin, TX

Q.         "Frank" had a dismal pitching career with both teams, once giving up thirteen      runs in one inning to the Indians.
Hint:     He is beloved in his home town for his record as a minor league manager there.
Twint:    In the Senior Circuit, he later on won two batting titles (with .398 and .368).
A.         Frank “Lefty” O’Doul (who was of French, not Irish, ancestry; “Indian Massacre” 07‑Jul‑1923; Won 4 PCL titles with the San Francisco Seals 1943-46)
FCR -    Bill Deane, Cooperstown, NY

Q.         He was born in Philadelphia and died in Buffalo.  He never played even a single inning of major league ball, yet no one would deny him his spot in Cooperstown.
Twint:    As a manager in the bigs, he won eight pennants and six World Series.
A.         Joe McCarthy (WS victories:  1932, 36-69, 41, 43 all w/NYA, additional pennants 1929 w/CHC and 1942 w/NYA)
FCR -    John Shiffert, Morrow, GA

Q.         This Boston-born second baseman on the 2004 team, led the league in strike outs, ten times more than his home runs that season.  Name him.
Twint:    He was the first player in National League history to hit home runs from both sides of the plate in the same inning.
A.         Mark Bellhorn (1994 K:  177, HR:  17; Switch-hit HRs:  4th inning 29-Aug-2002)
FCR -    Andy Bradley, Washington, DC

Q.         Name the only Red Sox player to win an MVP, lead the league in RBIs, stolen bases and GDIPs.
Hint:     He wore #4.
Twint:    He was grounded by planes.
A.         Jackie Jensen (1958 AL MVP 122 RBI, 1954 22 SB, GIDP 1954, 56, 57; A paralyzing fear of flying had him opt for early retirement as the majors became bi-coastal.)
FCR -    Paul Hirsch, Danville, CA

Q.         He recently turned 71 and some think his stats are Hall of Fame worthy.  (They are certainly comparable to those of some inductees.)
Hint:     He once threw 163 pitches in a World Series game.
Twint:    He began his wind-up almost facing back to second base.
A.         Luis Tiant (b. 23-Nov-1940; WS G 4 15-Oct-1975)
FCR -    Jim McCoy, Melrose, MA

Q.         His .363 batting average led his league by over thirty points.
Twint:    His teammates finished 2nd and 3rd in that same batting race.
A.         John Olerud (1993 AL; Paul Molitor .331, Roberto Alomar .326)
FCR -    Andy Bradley, Washington, DC

Q.         He is one of only two players whose 3000th hit was a homer.
Hint:     He was the first to do so.
Twint:    He famously rode a police horse while celebrating a World Series clinching victory.
A.         Wade Boggs (118th and final career home run came on 07-Aug-1999; WS ride 26‑Oct‑1996)
FCR -    Bill Carle, Lee's Summit, MO

Q.         He no-hit the White Sox and in another game, struck out 17 Senators for the Bosox.
Hint:     He has twice addressed the SABR chapter where this quiz originated.
Twint:    In his major league debut, Billy Martin stole home on him.
A.         Bill Monbouquette (No-hitter 01-Aug-1962; 17K G 12-May-1961; Debut 18-Jul-1958)
FCR -    Al Blumkin, Brooklyn

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Q.         Lou Gehrig broke his record for consecutive games played.
Twint:    He won four World Series championships.
A.         Everett Scott (1,307 G; WS 1915, 16, 18, 23)
FCR -    Kevin LaRose, Federal Way, WA

Q.         Both the Yankees and the Red Sox currently have five minor league franchises, name as many as you can (Gulf League and Dominican Leagues do not count).
Twint:    C’mon!  You know it or you don’t.
A.  -      YANKEES                                     RED SOX
Scranton Wilkes-Barre Yankees    Pawtucket
Trenton Thunder                           Portland Sea Dogs
Tampa Yankees                            Salem Red Sox
Charlesto(w)n River Dogs             Greenville Drive
Staten Island Yankees                  Lowell Spinners
FCR -    Tim Hagerty, Portland, OR

WEEKLY THEME – Selected notable major leaguers who played or managed for the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox (or their franchise predecessors) as presented to the geographically appropriate, but often loyalty-split Start-Lajoie chapter of SABR last month.

Yankees         Red Sox
Baylor                1983-85           1986-87
Bellhorn              2005                2004-05
Boggs                1993-97           1982-92
Chesbro             1903-09           1909
Damon               2006-09           2002-05
Easler                1986-87           1984-85
Henderson          1985-89           2002
Hobson              1975-80           1982
Howard              1955-67           1967-68
Jensen               1950-52           1954-59, 61
McCarthy            1931-46           1948-50
McDermott         1948-53           1956
Monbouquette    1968                1958-65
O’Doul               1919-20, 22      1923
Olerud                2004                2005
Ruffing               1924-30           1930-46
Ruth                   1914-19           1920-34
Scott                  1922-25           1914-21
Tannehill             1903                1904-08
Tiant                   1971-78           1979-80

First Correct Respondent to Identify Theme – Father Reverend Gerry Beirne, Narragansett, RI (Not really, but he did pen the entire quiz!  We thank him for permission to use it here.)

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