Sunday, May 27, 2018

2018-05-21 Hall of Famers who received 500 or more votes for their election

Q.        Who tied Joe DiMaggio’s record for winning American League Most Valuable Player Awards with the most years intervening between awards?
Hint:     Some say he saved baseball.
Hint:     He was the last player to bat in Baltimore's Memorial Stadium.
A.         CAL RIPKEN  [SABR Bio]
-  AL MVP 19831991 = 7 seasons between; Joe D. 19391947 = 7 yrs. Between.  Joe also won an additional MVP in 1941.  [Note:  Walter Johnson won the Chalmers in 1913 and the AL MVP in 1924, an 11 year hiatus even though only 3 MVPs were given in the AL in those years.
-  His breaking of Lou Gehrig’s consecutive games-played streak garnered huge public attention right after the contentious 1994-95 work stoppage.
-  Last G @ Memorial 06-Oct-1991 (He grounded into a double play.)
FCR -  Sarah Grynpas, Toronto
Incorrect guesses:  Carl Yastrzemski, Robin Yount, Frank Robinson

Q.        Who was the first Blue Jay to hit home runs from each side of the plate in the same game?
Hint:     He is one of only 5 players to win an LCS MVP and an All-Star Game MVP.
Hint:     He and another player are the only duo of All-Stars to be teammates on three separate teams.  (Although he was an All-Star on every one of the three, his partner was only an All-Star on one.)
-  Switch-hit HRs 10-May-1991 [My son Russ was at that game.]
-  1992 ALCS MVP & 1998 ASG MVP.  Others to collect both awards are Mariano Rivera, Kirby Puckett, Fred Lynn, Steve Garvey
-  He and Joe Carter were teammates on SDP 1990, TOR 1991-1995 & BAL 1998.
FCR -  John Martick, Knoxville
Incorrect guesses:  Tony Fernandez, George Bell, Carlos Delgado

Q.        Of whom did Bill James say, “If you split him in two, you’d have two Hall of Famers.”?  [Statistically or metaphorically, we assume.]
Hint:     He said he learned the foundation of his record-setting skills in Ogden.
Hint:     He got his 3,000th hit in his Hall of Fame Teammate’s last career game.
Hint:     He played for more different major league teams that any other member of the 3,000-hit club.
-  James’s quote has yet to be disproven.
-  Under former Giants/Pirates standout shortstop as his manager, Henderson stole 44 bases for the Ogden A’s of the PCL and became a game-ready major leaguer.
-  With the SDP on 07-Oct-2001, Henderson collected his 3,000th hit.  It was Tony Gwynn’s 2,440th …and last major league game.
-  He played for OAK (4X), NYY, TOR, SDP (2X), ANA, NYM, SEA, BOS & LAD
FCR -  Adam Balutis, Arlington, Virginia
Incorrect guesses:  Eddie Murray, Dave Winfield, Paul Molitor, Babe Ruth

Q.        What Hall of Fame batter recorded 19 consecutive seasons with a batting average of .300 or better, all with the same major league team?
Hint:     His career batting average against pitching legend Greg Maddux is an impressive .415.
Hint:     His career batting average ranks him among the greats, just behind Lou Gehrig, but he did it in a time when offense dominated the game.
Hint:     He got his 2,000th and his 3,000th hits on his mother's birthday, 6 years apart.
A.         TONY GWYNN  [SABR Bio]
-  Hit .300+ 1983-2001
-  Career avg is .338, tied for 18th all-time.
-  Career 2,000th hit = 06-Aug-1993.  No. 3,000 was hit 06-Aug-1999.
FCR -  Sarah Grynpas, Toronto
Incorrect guesses:  Eddie Murray

Q.        What feisty hurler was the last pitcher to win a sub-2.00 ERA title in each league?
Hint:     “Feisty” is surely an understatement.  He once said, “Wake up the damn Bambino and have me face him.  Maybe I’ll drill him in the ass!”
Hint:     About his fellow moundsmen, he surmised, “I think there are people who don’t do so well at basketball and they think, ‘Let me try pitching.’  There are a lot of them.”
Hint:     Then there’s this priceless gem:  “Georgie Porgie, he might have enough money to buy the whole damn league, but he doesn’t have enough money to buy fear to put in my heart.”
Hint:     An opponent, a slugger who had won an MVP, quipped, “If you lean over the plate, he’ll stick one up your nose!”
A.         PEDRO MARTINEZ  [ SABR Bio]
-  ERA of 1.90 w/MON in 1997 and 1.74 w/BOS in 2000
-  ‘Bambino’ quote was about Babe Ruth and the soi-disant ‘Curse of the Bambino’.
-  $$ quote was in reference to Yankees’ owner George Steinbrenner.
-  Final quote was from the seldom-intimidated Jason Giambi.
FCR -  Mark DeLodovico, Rockville, Maryland
Incorrect guesses:  Roger Clemens, Rich Gossage, Randy Johnson, Don Sutton

Q.        Who is the only player to record over 500 putouts as a pitcher in the majors.
Hint:     He’s also the only one to record over 400.
Hint:     No pitcher ever recorded more games started in National League history than he.
Hint:     For 17 straight seasons, he won at least 15 games in each.  (He won 14 in the 18th year.)
Hint:     Midway through his career, he summed up his pitching philosophy thus:  “The best pitch in baseball is a located fastball.  That will always be the best pitch. You can set up everything you want off that.”
A.         GREG MADDUX  [SABR Bio]
-  546 Career PO.  The next 3, clamoring for the silver, are Kevin Brown w/388, Jack Morris w/387 & Phil Niekro w/386.
-  Started 740 G in the NL.
-  Won 15+ G 1988-2006
-  Pitching philosophy stated in 2001 in an interview with Bob Nightengale.
FCR -  Jesse Asbury, Norman, Oklahoma
Incorrect guesses:  Christy Mathewson, Warren Spahn, Jim Kaat, Pete Alexander, Nolan Ryan, Cy Young

Q.        Who is the only pitcher to strike out 300 batters while playing for two teams in the same season?
Hint:     Only he was able to lead the American League in strikeouts four consecutive seasons, then do the same thing in the National League.
Hint:     To provide further symmetry, he, as a batter, hit the same number of home runs as were hit off him by pitchers.
Hint:     Synching yet with destiny, his 300th strikeout of the season one year was the 3rd strikeout of an Immaculate Inning.
Hint:     Some viewers thought his fastball was lethal.  At least one observer was able to validate that hypothesis.
A.         RANDY JOHNSON  [SABR Bio]
-  1998:  213 K w/SEA + 116 K w/HOU = 329 [Most in the majors, but he led neither league.]
-  Led the AL in Ks 1992-95 w/SEA; Led the NL 1999-2002 w/ARI
-  Hit his only home run off 19-Sep-2003 off Doug Davis of MIL.  He surrendered only one home run to a pitcher, Yovani Gallardo on 08-Apr-2009 in San Francisco.
-  An Immaculate  Inning is 9 consecutive strikes thrown by a pitcher to  complete a half inning.  Johnson got Ks #298, 299 & 300 on 23-Aug-2001 in the 6th inning striking out Tony McKnight, Gary Matthews & Jack Wilson.
-  It was a dove, not a seagull.  View here.  For Seagull, see Winfield, Dave.
FCR -  Naftali Greenwood, Kiryat, Arba, ISRAEL
Incorrect guesses:  Carl Mays, Nolan Ryan, Vida Blue

Q.        What pitcher’s first season with his new team was sweetened when his teammate/brother got a hit?
Hint:     SABR gathered to celebrate his uniform number being retired.
Hint:     Only Mike Hampton won more Silver Slugger Awards than he did.
A.         TOM GLAVINE
-  Brother Mike played with the Mets for 6 games in 2003 and got his only hit on 28-Sep in his final at-bat in the majors.
-  Number 47 retired by ATL on a rainy night 06-Aug-2010.  Unintentionally coincided with SABR’s 40th convention, held that year in Atlanta.
-  SS won in 91, 95, 96 & 98.  Hampton had 5.
FCR -  David Ramsden, Barcelona
Incorrect guesses:  Don Drysdale, Ken Brett, Wes Ferrell

WEEKLY THEME – Hall of Famers who received 500 or more votes for their election.

H of F’er......... Votes...... Year........... Percent
Maddux.......... 555.......... 2014.......... 97.20%
Ripken............ 537.......... 2007.......... 98.50%
Johnson......... 534.......... 2015.......... 97.30%
Gwynn............ 532.......... 2007.......... 97.60%
Glavine........... 525.......... 2014.......... 91.90%
Alomar............ 523.......... 2011.......... 90.00%
Henderson..... 511.......... 2009.......... 94.80%
Martinez......... 500.......... 2015.......... 91.10%

First Correct Respondent to Identify Theme – No one.

Incorrect theme guesses:

Monday  -  Shortstops who hit 400+ career home runs
Wed        -  Hall of Famers who played in the 1990 All Star Game.
               -  Or 1991.
               -  Or both.

Thurs.     -  All-Stars who at one point in their careers were on the same team as their brother(s)

Sunday, May 20, 2018

2018-05-14 Players who hit into game-ending triple plays

Q.        Whose record for career home runs by a Los Angeles Dodger did Eric Karros break?
Hint:     His avian tendencies are not immediately obvious.
Hint:     He was a six-time All-Star, but the most important award he ever won, he had to share—twice!
A.         RON CEY
-  Cey finished w/228 HRs for LAD.  Karros broke that with his 229th on 13‑Jun‑2000.
-  Cey’s build and stride remind some people of nature’s least aerodynamic bird, the penguin.
-  Was an All-Star every season 1974-79; co-MVP of the 1981 WS with Pedro Guerrero and Steve Yeager.
FCR -  Brian Engelhardt, Reading, Pennsylvania
Incorrect guesses:  Steve Garvey, Duke Snider, Pedro Guerrero, Roy Campanella, Gil Hodges, Reggie Smith

Q.        Who was the last position player to win the Rookie of the Year Award for the Cincinnati Reds?
Hint:     He finished ahead of a Hall of Famer in the voting.  
Hint:     Many believe he should have been the MVP of the only World Series he ever played in.
Hint:     His nickname was from a canine character appearing in commercials for an adult beverage at the time.
A.         CHRIS SABO

-  Roberto Alomar finished 5th in the ROY voting that year
-  Sabo hit .563 in the 1990 WS sweep of the Bash Brothers A’s (The WS MVP Award went to Jose Rijo)
- Sabo’s teammates called him “Spuds” after Spuds McKenzie, pit bull mascot for Bud Light beer
FCR -  Adrian Fung, Toronto
Incorrect guesses:  Barry Larkin, Scott Williamson, Tony Perez

Q.        Who was the last player ever to bat against Sandy Koufax in the majors?
Hint:     He is of Basque extraction.
Hint:     He and Nomar Garciaparra, Mark Kotsay and Mike Gallego were born in the same city.
-  Faced Koufax in the 6th inning of the 2nd game of the 1966 World Series.  He grounded into a double play.  It was the last major league pitch Koufax ever threw.  He was replaced in the 7th by Ron Perranoski.
-  The Basques are a people inhabiting areas near the Spanish-French Border and Andora.  They had long sought independence.  Unsuccessfully.
-  All born in Whittier, California.
FCR -  David Ramsden, Barcelona
Incorrect guesses:  Davey Johnson, Luis Aparicio, Davey Lopes, Chico Salmon

Q.        Who was the third-base coach for all three Oakland A’s World Series championship teams of the 1970s?
Hint:     A former Lancer lancer, he heard his wife declare on the occasion of their 60th wedding anniversary that they should only get credit for 30 years because he was on the road half the time.
Hint:     On his first professional team, he led his league in batting at .363, in hits/188 hits, in doubles w/33, in triples w/14 and in RBI w/129.
Hint:     He played professional basketball as a teammate of Jackie Robinson, George Mikan and George Crowe.
Hint:     His fielding was so outstanding during his 2nd year in the majors, that Bill James said he would have won a Gold Glove had the award existed at that time.
Hint:     He was an American League All-Star the year his team won 103 games.
Hint:     He already had two World Series rings by that time.
A.         IRV NOREN  [SABR Bio]
-  3rd-base coach for OAK 1971, 72, 73 & 74.
-  Pitched for his home-town Pasadena City College where he was later honored with a Distinguished Alumni Award. 
-  Great 1st-year stats were w/The Santa Barbara Dodgers of the California League.
-  Played pro basketball in the Chicago American Gears of the National Basketball League.
-  GG-worth year:  1952.  The actual award began in 1957.
-  Was AS in 1954 w/NYY.  Had won WS with them in 1952 & 53.
FCR -  David Ramsden, Barcelona
Incorrect guesses:  Alvin Dark, Jerry Adair

Q.        Who broke his ankle early in the season, then broke Ray Schalk‘s 1916 record for stolen bases in a season by a catcher that same year?
Hint:     A Hall of Famer-to-be hit an extra-inning, walk-off home run in his major league managerial debut.
Hint:     In college, he was named all-conference at two different positions.
A.         JOHN WATHAN  [SABR Bio]
-  Schalk stole 30 in 1916.  Wathan stole 36 in 1982.
-  George Brett homered in the 10th on 27-Aug-1987.
-  All-SOCAL Conference @ C & 1b while playing at UCSD.
FCR -  Samuel Bass, Decatur, Georgia
Incorrect guesses:  Jason Kendall, Johnny Kling, Mickey Cochrane, Gabby Hartnet

Q.        What charismatic southerner won a Gold Glove for his outfield play in only his third full year in the majors?
Hint:     After finishing a respectable 3rd in Rookie-of-the-Year voting behind a future MVP, he tied for the major league lead in games played each of the next two seasons.
Hint:     He is too often remembered, however, for a dramatically egregious play he made one day against division rival Washington Nationals.
Hint:     In his 12 seasons, he managed to spread his 5,000+ at-bats over two American League teams and six (!) National League teams.
-  GG 2007 in large part due to his major-league-leading 19 OF assists.
-  Bad play for Philly on Denard Span line drive.
- From 2005 to 2016, he played for ATL, NYM, TEX, KCR, SFG, SDP, PHI & MIA.
FCR -  Sarah Grynpas, Toronto
Incorrect guesses:  Michael Morse

Q.        Who hit the first grand slam for the recently-moved and renamed Baltimore Orioles?
Hint:     He played for a team in their last season in one city and managed another in their first season in a new city.
Hint:     One of his best contributions to the game was his progeny.
A.         BOB KENNEDY  [SABR Bio]
-  GS 30-Jul-1954 off NYY’s Allie Reynolds, helping Don Larsen to his only shutout that year.  (He only won 3 G, but his 21 losses that year did lead the AL.)
-  Played for the Dodgers during their last season in Brooklyn.  (Also his last year as a player.)  A decade later, he was the first to manage the A’s after their move to Oakland in 1968.
-  Son Terry had a 14-year major league career, including 4 All-Star appearances, a Silver Slugger Award and was on two pennant-winning teams.
FCR -  Dave Goss, Wind Gap, Pennsylvania
Incorrect guesses:  Gus Bell, Jim Gentile, Cal Ripken, Sr., Ray Boone, Sam Mele, Clark Griffith

Q.        Who played with and was signed together out of high school with Tim McCarver?
Hint:     Citing the difference in their respective signing bonuses, he liked to say, “We were the gold dust twins.  He got the gold and I got the dust.”
Hint:     His brother’s major league career consisted of one 9th-inning pinch-running assignment which resulted in his being force out at 2nd.
Hint:     He received threatening letters from New York Mets fans.
Hint:     Teammate Carl Yastrzemski once mused, “He gets a good piece of the ball every time he goes up there.”
A.         PHIL GAGLIANO  [SABR Bio]
-  McCarver and he attended Christian Brothers High School in Memphis by STL in 1959.  McCarver’s bonus was $75,000.  His was $10,000.
-  Ralph Gagliano’s brief career:  11-Sep-1965
-  The threats were the result of an 11-May-1965 collision on the basepaths that sent the popular NY Met Ron Hunt to the DL for 90 days with a shattered shoulder.
-     Yaz quote came soon after the 1971 All-Star Game.
FCR -  Rick Zucker, St. Louis
Incorrect guesses: 

Hint:     What rookie was a defensive replacement for Ted Williams twice in the span of a week before entering the service?
Hint:     He and Williams re-joined the Red Sox on the same day after the war.
Hint:     Major league shortstop Joe DeMaestri was a high school teammate.
Hint:     His nickname would be a cheer in some places.
A.         KARL OLSON  [SABR Bio]
-  Pinch-ran and stayed in LF for Williams in the top of the 8th on 15-Jul-1951.  On 22-Jul-1951, he replace Williams in the 9th inning of a 10-inning game.
-  The brothers in arms returned to the Sawks on 04-Aug-1953, but Olson saw playing time two days earlier than did The Kid.
-  DeMaestri was two years older at Tamalpais High School in Mill Valley, CA.
-  Nickname was “Ole”.
FCR -  Sarah Grynpas, Toronto
Incorrect guesses:  Carrol Hardy, Dom DiMaggio, Jimmy Piersall, Joe Pignatano (Who was one inning early from joining this list on 30-Sep-1962.), M.C. Hammer

Q.        Which A's coach doubled as the traveling secretary under the team's cost-conscious owner?
Hint:     He had 9 Hall of Fame teammates and played for a Hall of Fame manager.
Hint:     He lined into a triple play that ended his team’s season.
A.         BOBBY HOFMAN   [SABR Bio]
-  A’s coach 1966-67, 69-70, 72-78
-  Was teammates with Johnny Mize, Willie Mays, Monte Irvin, Hoyt Wilhelm & Red Schoendienst in the majors; Ray Dandridge, Billy Herman and Orlando Cepeda in the minors; and Earl Weaver in high school.  Played for Leo Durocher.
-  For details on the TP, it will be revealed anon, forsooth …and all will be clear.
FCR -  John Wills, San Francisco
Incorrect guesses: 

WEEKLY THEME – Players who hit into game-ending triple plays

Last Out           Date          Turned        Out ahead                        Game result
Cey................. 21-Apr-1978...... 3-6-3....... B. Russell, R. Smith..................... HOU 8, LAD 6
Etchebarren... 17-Sep-1966..... 3-6-2-1.... P. Blair, D. Johnson..................... CHW 3, BAL 1
Francoeur...... 23-Aug-2009..... 4-4-4....... D. Murphy, L. Castillo.................. PHI 9, NYM 7
Gagliano........ 30-May-1967..... 6-4-3-2.... McCarver, Cepeda...................... STL 1, CIN 2
Hofman.......... 25-Sep-1955*.... 6-4-3....... W. Lockman, J. Amalfitano.......... PHI 3, NYG 1
Kennedy......... 10-Sep-1940..... 4-6-3....... M Tresh, T. Wright....................... WSH 5, CHW 2
Noren............. 22-May-1953..... 1-3-6....... A. Schult, A. Carey...................... NYY 4, WSH 12
Olson............. 29-Aug-1953..... 3-3-6....... F. Baker, A. Zarilla....................... BOS 1, CHW 5
Sabo.............. 08-Sep-1991..... 5-4-3....... E. Davis, H. Morris....................... CIN 2, MON 4
Wathan........... 03-Jun-1977..... 9-6-4-6.... F. Patek, D. Nelson.......................BAL 7, KCR 6
*Last inning of the team’s final game of the season.  The team (NYG) finished 80-74, 18½ G behind the Brooklyn Dodgers, who would then win their only World Series.

First Correct Respondent to Identify ThemeRandall Chandler, Germantown, Tennessee (After Sabo)

Incorrect theme guesses:

Thursday   -     Players who look like Yogi Berra

Saturday    -     Sons of first generation Americans