Monday, January 27, 2020

2020-01-20 Hall of Fame pitchers who surrendered home runs to Babe Ruth

Q.        Who held the career strikeout record for pitchers for sixty-two years?
Hint:     He once allowed fifteen hits in a complete game shutout.
Hint:     Among those hits, his opponents had five doubles and added a stolen base.
Hint:     He was depicted on the cover of a national sports magazine signing with a team in the other league, though he ultimately remained with the team where he debuted.
-  He passed Cy Young in 1921 with his 2,804th K and wasn’t passed until Steve Carlton threw his 3,510th in 1983.
-  15-H ShO = 03-Jul-1913.  He beat BOS 1-0 in 10 innings.
-  The April, 1915 Baseball Magazine showed him forsaking the AL for the Federal League and any potential increase in pay.
FCR -  J.P. Wanamaker, Binghamton, New York
Incorrect guesses:  Cy Young, Grover Cleveland Alexander, Rube Waddell, Christy Mathewson

Q.        Who was the only pitcher to win 300 games between WWI and WWII?
Hint:     He was the first American League pitcher to win the MVP award as voted on by the BBWAA.
Hint:     He was the only American League pitcher other than Lefty Gomez to start the All-Star game before 1939.
A.         LEFTY GROVE  [SABR Bio]
-  Career 300 W 1925-41
-  ASG starter in 1936
FCR -  Mark Pattison, Washington, DC
Incorrect guesses:  Walter Johnson, Early Wynn, Cristy Matthewson

Q.        Who was on the mound when Babe Ruth daringly tried to steal second?
Hint:     He returned from military duty deaf in one ear.
Hint:     He won more games than anyone else who had never thrown a no-hitter.
Hint:     He holds the record for the pitcher with the most career victories against a single team.
-  In G 7 of the 1926 WS, Babe Ruth ha walked with 2 down in the bottom of the 9th with NYY behind 2-3 and tied in G 3-3.  Trying to catch the defense off guard, he broke for 2nd base whereupon C Bob O’Farrell threw and Rogers Hornsby tagged Ruth out to secure the Cardinals’ first World Series championship.  It wasn’t a completely foolhardy move.  Ruth has stolen 11 bases that season and had 123 for his career, including 10 steals of home. 
-  He served in WWI.
-  373 wins.
-  70 W vs. CIN
FCR -  Dave Huners, Herndon, Virginia
Incorrect guesses: 

Q.        Who was the first pitcher in either league to win the BBWAA MVP award twice?
Hint:     The first home run he ever hit was off a Hall of Famer.
Hint:     Every team he pitched for was based in New York City.
A.         CARL HUBBELL  [SABR Bio]
-  MVPs in 1933 & 1936
-  HR off Dizzy Dean 26-Aug-1932
-  Pitched all 16 years of his career for the New York Giants.
FCR -  Dr. John Rickert, Terre Haute, Indiana
Incorrect guesses:  Don Newcombe, Ernie Banks, Lefty Grove, Hal Newhouser

Q.        Who is the first pitcher to win three games in a World Series lasting six games?
Hint:     He once stole second base, third base and home in the same inning, helping secure a win for his team in a rain-threatened game.
Hint:     He once thought he’d stolen third base.  Unfortunately, there was a teammate already occupying it… and in the World Series no less.
A.         RED FABER  [SABR Bio]
-  3 WS W = 1917, CHW won 4-2 over NYG
-  3 SB = 14-Jul-1915
-  SB 1917 WS G 2 w/his teammate, Buck Weaver, already there.  He was out.
FCR -  David Holtz, Northridge, California
Incorrect guesses:  Dizzy Dean, Babe Ruth, [Christy Mathewson (1905) and Jack Coombs (1911) would both have qualified as the question was originally worded, even though neither satisfies the hints.]

Q.        Who appeared in relief in the first major league game he ever attended?
Hint:     He pitched for more than 20 years in the majors but never stuck out as many as 75 batters in any one season.
Hint:     His hometown newspaper invited fans to send in donations to buy a pennant since it had become apparent that his team was never going to win one for him before retirement.
Hint:     He was both a teammate of Hall of Famer Eddie Collins, who started his career in 1906 and Dave Philley, who retired in 1962.
A.         TED LYONS [SABR Bio]
-  MLB debut = 02-Jul-1923.  He pitched a perfect inning against the Browns before being lifted for pinch-hitter, fellow rookie Roy Elsh (Yes THE Roy Elsh!)
-  The Chicago Tribune asked for merely a dime apiece for that mocking pennant.
-  His career stretched from 1923 to 1946.
FCR -  Sam Bass, Decatur, Georgia
Incorrect guesses: 

Q.        Which spitballer once pitched the first seven innings of a game without throwing a single ball?
Hint:     With his brother, they were the first sibling pitchers to win twenty games each at some point in their careers.
Hint:     When he was only twelve years old he started working 72 hours a week in a coal mine.
-  This claim came from Coveleski himself explaining that every pitch was either hit, missed or called a strike.  Some dedicated SABR researcher will one day confirm this or prove it an exaggeration.
-  His older brother Harry had 20-win seasons 1914-16 for DET.  Stan won 20 in 1918-21 and 1925.
-  Grew up in the coal-mining area of central Pennsylvania
FCR -  Mark Vatavuk, Erie, Pennsylvania
Incorrect guesses:  Gaylord Perry, Phil Niekro, Harry Coveleski, Burleigh Grimes, Dizzy Dean, Joe Niekro

Q.        Who was the last player traded to the Yankees from the Red Sox before Yankee stadium opened?
Hint:     His nickname was based on his hometown, known as The Mushroom Capital of the World.
Hint:     As the Philadelphia general manager, he was responsible for changing the team name from the Phillies to the Blue Jays.
Hint:     He had a lifetime contract with them but passed away while serving in that position.
A.         HERB PENNOCK  [SABR Bio]
-  Players traded from BOS to NYY between 1914 and 1922 include Babe Ruth, Bullet Joe Bush, Carl Mays and Ernie Shore, to name a few.  Yankee Stadium opened 18‑Apr‑1923.
-  He hailed from Kennett Square, Pennsylvania and was called “The Knight of Kennett Square” or sometimes “The Knight of Kennett Square”.  Originally exactly one square mile, it is a borough in Chester County, Pennsylvania, not far from Philadelphia. Known as the Mushroom Capital of the World, its region produces over a million pounds of mushrooms a year, half of the U.S. mushroom crop.
-  The new Blue Jays nickname ultimately didn't prove popular enough and was dropped after 2 years.
-  He was the GM of the Phillies from 1944 until his death on 30-Jan-1948.
FCR -  Mark Kanter, Portsmouth, Rhode Island
Incorrect guesses: 

Q.        What former St. Louis Browns pitcher was inducted into the San Francisco Bay Area Sports Hall of Fame in its inaugural class along with Willie Mays and Joe DiMaggio?
Hint:     A Stanford grad, he returned to Stanford as an assistant coach and was later the head coach at Lafayette.
Hint:     He played for the Browns under player/manager future Hall of Famer George Sisler and had a decent batting average for a pitcher including a brace of doubles during his career in the majors.
Hint:     He was also inducted into the College Hall of Fame in its inaugural class.
-  Inducted into the Bay Area Sports Hall of Fame in 1980.
-  Played football at Stanford University 1922-25.  Coached football at Lafayette University in 1936.
-  He played 3 years in the majors 1926-28.  Career BA = .200 w/12 hits.
-  Inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1951.
+ He is, of course, also in the NFL Hall of Fame.
FCR -  David Serota, Kalamazoo
Incorrect guesses:  Lefty O'Doul, Elden Auker, George Sisler

Q.        Which Hall of Famer was drafted into U.S. military service during WWII, despite being 38 years old and missing four toes?
Hint:     He was the first Yankee pitcher to hit a grand slam.
Hint:     He’ll get you two minutes.
A.         RED RUFFING  [SABR Bio]
-   At 15 he was working as a train car coupler, hooking coal cars together when his left foot was crushed between cars. Doctors managed to save the foot, but he lost four toes.  (Uncle Sam really needed soldiers and was anxious to induct just about anybody even if not 1-A classified.)
-  GS = 14-May-1933.  It was a 2-out, 9th inning walk-off.  3 of the 4 runs scored were by Hall of Famers
-  Roughing is an offense and penalty in ice hockey the penalty for which is usually two minutes in the penalty box..
FCR -  Sarah Grynpas, Toronto
Incorrect guesses:  Tommy Byrnes, Curt Simmons, Elmer Gedeon

Q.        Which twenty-plus year MLB pitcher worked in a mortuary during the off season?
Hint:     He was a double-unique until a certain future Cy Young Award winner got called up.
Hint:     He led the majors in saves forty years before that statistic became official.
Hint:     In the same game his pitching stopped a 28-game hitting streak by that year’s home run champ but allowed that year’s MVP to extend his consecutive-games hitting streak to 24 games.
A.         WAITE HOYT  [SABR Bio]
-  He got involved in the mortuary and funeral business through his father-in-law.
-  LaMarr Hoyt bumped Waite from D-U status 41 years later.  LaMarr won a CYA in 1983.
-  Had 8 saves in 1928.
-  On 25-Aug-1922 he shut out Ken Williams who went 0-4, but gave up a couple of singles to George Sisler whose streak didn’t end until he stretched in to 41 G. The Browns won 3-1.
FCR -  Kevin Mix, Chicago
Incorrect guesses:  Wilcy Moore, Firpo Marbury, Jack Quinn

Q.        Who is the only National Leaguer to play on his franchise’s first five pennant-winning teams in the modern era?
Hint:     As a 34-year-old, he led the National League in complete games and shutouts.
Hint:     He was portrayed by fellow Hall of Famer Bob Lemon in the movie "The Winning Team"?
A.         JESSE HAINES  [SABR Bio]
-  He pitched for Cardinal teams in 1926*, 1928, 1930, 1931* & 1934*.  (N.B. Christy Mathewson was really first since was on NYG in 1904, 05, 11, 12 & 13.  Thus, he’s not incorrect, even though his team didn’t play in the ‘4 postseason, that was not what the question asked.  Overlooking that [if you would please, just this one time…], only Haines satisfies the hints.)
-  In 1927 he threw 25 complete games among which were 6 shutouts.
-  Lemon resembled Haines enough to be credible… “The Winning Team” a biopic about Pete Alexander starring Ronald Reagan and Doris Day.
* World Series champs
FCR -  Bob Flynn, Chandler, Arizona
Incorrect guesses:  Grover Cleveland Alexander, Cy Young, Frankie Frisch

WEEKLY THEME – Hall of Fame pitchers who surrendered home runs to Babe Ruth.
Alexander*    1      (1928 WS, G 2)
Coveleski      5
Faber             9
Grove            9
Haines*         1      (1926 WS, G 7)
Hoyt               5
Hubbell*        1      (16-Apr-1935)
Johnson      10
Lyons          10
Nevers          2
Pennock        5
Ruffing          3
*National League pitchers

First Correct Respondent to Identify ThemePatrick Ray, Paradise Valley, Arizona

Incorrect theme guesses: 

Monday  -  Hall-of-Fame inductees at first ceremony

Tuesday -  Pitchers with the most wins in the American League.
               -  Pitchers with more than 300 wins who only pitched in the American League. 
               -  Most wins by a pitcher who only pitched in the American League.
               -  First pitchers elected to the HOF
               -  Players with 5+ consecutive years of 20+ wins for the same team

If you know someone who would enjoy receiving Horsehide Trivia, please refer them to this site:

This week’s quiz archived here:  http://horsehidetriviA.

Monday, January 20, 2020

2020-01-13 Rookie managers with 100-wins in their first full season

Q.        Who was the first catcher elected to the Hall of Fame by the Baseball Writers Association of America?
Hint:     In college he boxed and played football and the saxophone.
Hint:     He was the first American League catcher with a season batting average over .350.
Hint:     He was the first Hall of Famer to homer in his final at-bat.
-  Elected in 1947.  (The Hall's Veterans Committee had elected Buck Ewing in 1939 and Roger Bresnahan and Wilbert Robinson in 1945.  Connie Mack went in earlier and was a catcher, but his 6.9 WAR accumulated over 11 playing seasons is hardly why he is a legend and in the Hall.)
-  Attended Boston University.
-  He hit .357 in 1930. (…and followed up with .349 the next year.)
-  HR 25-May-1937; Beaned by Pitcher Bump Hadley in his next plate appearance ending Cochrane’s playing career.
FCR -  Leonard Epstein, Dallas
Incorrect guesses:  Buck Ewing, Bill Dickey, Roger Bresnahan, Gabby Hartnett 

Q.        Who was the first player in either league to be named League Championship Series Most Valuable Player?
Hint:     He was named the Manager of the Year after his first MLB managing assignment.
Hint:     He is believed to be a pioneer in the usage of the high five as a celebration.
A.         DUSTY BAKER

-  NLCS MVP 1977 (ALCS MVP award didn’t begin until 1980)
-  MOY = Mgr. of the 1993 SFG
-  There are many origin stories of the high five, but the two most documented candidates are Baker and Glenn Burke of LAD on 02-Oct-1977 following Burke’s HR in the 6th inning.
FCR -  Matt Clairmont, New Minas, Nova Scotia
Incorrect guesses:  Walt Weiss Paul Molitor, Frank Robinson, Davey Johnson, Dave Roberts

Q.        What former Trojan played for four months on the same major league team with his brother?
Hint:     He and his brother have each hit two home runs in the first inning of a game in the same season.
Hint:     His best postseason home run was not in the World Series.
A.         AARON BOONE
-  He and brother Bret Boone played together for CIN April through July on CIN in 1997.  Aaron attended USC.
-  2 HR in 1st = 09-Aug-2002 vs. Brett Tomko of SDP.  Brother Bret did it 02-May-2002.
-  Hit the ALCS series-winning HR vs. BOS 2003.  He was the only batter in the bottom of the 11th that day.  He had entered the game as a pinch runner.
FCR -  Mark DeLodovico, Rockville, Maryland
Incorrect guesses:  Bret Boone, Adam LaRoche, Joe Torre, Devon White, J.D. Drew, Melvin Upton

Q.        Who finished first, second, third and fourth on umpire Ron Luciano's list of the five most difficult managers he had to deal with?
Hint:     The team he managed won more MLB games than any other for the first fourteen plus years that he ran them.
Hint:     He managed the team that won the first game in the first American League Championship Series.
A.         EARL WEAVER  [SABR Bio]
-  Luciano was an AL umpire for more than a decade.
-  BAL mgr 1968-1979 with a record of 1,354-921 over than time.  He went on to win an additional 126 Gs.
-  BAL defeated MIN in G #1 of the 1969 ALCS 4-3.
FCR -  Stephen Wright, Naperville, Illinois
Incorrect guesses:  Sparky Anderson, Bobby Cox, Billy Martin

Q.        Who was the first manager of the AAA Denver Bears?
Hint:     In addition to managing himself that year, he also managed 24 future major leaguers including six future All-Stars, two World Series MVP-winning pitchers and a Hall of Famer.
A.         RALPH HOUK  [SABR Bio]
-  Bears began in 1955 w/Mgr Houk.
*MLB All-Star
**Hall of Famer (as a mgr.)
Larsen & Terry and the WS MVPs (1956 & 1962)
FCR -  Mark Kanter, Portsmouth, Rhode Island
Incorrect guesses:  Gene Mauch (See note below.), Bill Rigney, Charlie Dresden, Dick Williams, Jack Hendricks, Leo Durocher, Paul Richards
NOTE:  The original version of this question contained hints that did not belong to Houk but to Mauch.  They have been removed here.  The guilty have been excoriated.

Q.        Who managed the Red Sox to their highest win total ever for a season?
Hint:     They won 24 fewer games the following season.
Hint:     As a player, he once had an eighteen-pitch at-bat that drew praise from Vin Scully.
Hint:     The last pitch resulted in a home run.
A.         ALEX CORA  [SABR Bio]
-  Long AB = 12-May-2004.  Paul Swydan in an article in Hardball Times cites 6 ABs of at least 18 pitches over this pitch-count record era period.  Readers may enjoy learning that Brandon Belt’s 21-pitch AB on 22-Apr-2018 is the longest since these types of records have been officially kept.  The exact number of pitches in MLB’s very longest AB ever may never be known, but Luke Appling claimed (probably anecdotally) that in a 1940s contest he once fouled off twenty-four (24!) consecutive pitches before walking. His AB was thus a minimum of 28 pitches and could have been as many as 30!
FCR -  Patrick Roth, Chicago
Incorrect guesses:  Terry Francona, Darrell Johnson, Don Zimmer, Joey Cory, Dick Williams

Q.        Which Hall of Famer was a bat boy for a team in the College World Series?
Hint:     Of four large adjoining states he is the only native Hall of Famer.
Hint:     He was nicknamed for a Barrie character.
-  Bat boy for the 1948 USC team.  Was later offered a partial scholarship to play for the Rod Dedeaux-led Trojans, but accepted an offer from the Dodgers instead.
-  Nicknamed “Captain Hook” for his tendency to relieve pitchers at the first sign of trouble.  Sir James Matthew Barrie penned “Peter Pan” in which Captain Hook is the chief antagonist.
-  In the cluster of states containing Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota and South Dakota, only SDak can claim a Hall of Famer born there:  Anderson.
FCR -  Ken Jorgenson, Petaluma, California
Incorrect guesses:  Pee Wee Reese, Ralph Kiner, Sparky Anderson

Q.        Which Hall of Famer was originally nicknamed "Husk" when he debuted in the majors at catcher?
Hint:     Unusual for his position, he twice led the majors in stolen bases.
Hint:     He is the most recent Hall of Famer to be joined by having another Hall of Famer as alumnus of his same high school.
A.         FRANK CHANCE  [SABR Bio]
-  In his rookie season of 1898, he played only 3 G at 1B, 17 in the OF, but 33 at C.  He was dubbed “Husk” because of his husky (for his era) physical stature of 6'0" tall while weighing in at a solid 190 lbs.
-  Led MLB in SB w/67 in 1903 & 57 in 1906 while playing 1B.  The more familiar names of Wagner, Cobb & Collins took over the SB leads after that.  In the modern era, the only other first basemen to lead the MLB in SBs were Frank Isbell (1901), George Sisler (1922) and Jackie Robinson (1947).
-  Attended Fresno HS in California which graduated Tom Seaver some 70 years later.  N.B.:  A more recent pair of Hall of Famers were high school teammates are Eddie Murray and Ozzie Smith.  They actually WERE teammates at Locke HS in Compton and they post-date Seaver.
FCR -  Mike Mattsey, Robinson, Illinois
Incorrect guesses:  Ted Simmons, Roger Bresnahan, Don Zimmer, Craig Biggio

Q.        Who was the first member of the Kansas City Royals franchise to have his uniform number retired?
Hint:     He gave the advice to the undecided one-time Yankee and Brave Deion Sanders to go to college. 
Hint:     He had multiple stints at the helm of the Yankees during George Steinbrener's tenure as owner.
A.         DICK HOWSER  [SABR Bio]
-  Uni retired 03-Jul-1987
-  Sanders was torn and was always grateful for the counsel he received.
-  Managed NYY 1978 (0-1) & 1980 (103-59)
FCR -  James Cook, Warrensburg, Missouri
Incorrect guesses:  Lou Piniella, Billy Martin, Bob Lemon

Q.        What star outfielder’s MOTHER was named for Mickey Mantle?
Hint:     His nickname is geographically based.
Hint:     In his senior year in high school, he received an offer to play for UCLA on a volleyball scholarship.
Hint:     He wanted to attend an Ivy League school and eventually did get to play for Princeton.
-  His mother’s name is Michelle and according to the Rhode Island Monthly , October 2009, she was named for Mickey Mantle.
-  He was born in Woonsocket, Rhode Island and has been called “The Woonsocket Rocket”
-  Wikipedia says Rocco was an all-state athlete in four sports as he also excelled at indoor track in HS.  He received 50 scholarship offers from various colleges after impressing observers at the 1999 East Coast Showcase in Wilmington, North Carolina.
-  He did not attend college, but his first professional team was the 2000 Princeton Devil Rays.
FCR -  John Sullivan, Louisville
Incorrect guesses:  Chris Young, Will Venable, Carl Crawford

WEEKLY THEME – Rookie managers who won 100 games in their first full year managing.
Mgr.               Team    Year       Record         End Result
Anderson........ CIN..... 1970......... 102-60...... NL Pennant, Lost WS
Baker.............. SFG.... 1993......... 103-59...... 2nd place NL West
Baldelli........... MIN.... 2019......... 101-61...... 1st place AL Central, lost ALCS
Boone............. NYY... 2018......... 100-62...... Won WC, Lost ALDS
Chance........... CHC... 1906......... 116-36...... NL pennant, Lost WS
Cochrane....... DET.... 1934......... 101-53...... AL pennant, Lost WS
Cora............... BOS... 2018......... 108-54...... Won WS
Houk............... NYY... 1961......... 109-53...... Won WS
Howser........... NYY... 1980......... 103-59...... Won AL East, lost ALCS
Weaver........... BAL.... 1969......... 109-53...... Won AL pennant, Lost WS

First Correct Respondent to Identify ThemePatrick Ray, Paradise Valley, Arizona            (After Baker!)

Incorrect theme guesses:

Tuesday -  Managers who lost seven-game World Series after being up 3-2

If you know someone who would enjoy receiving Horsehide Trivia, please refer them to this site:

This week’s quiz archived here:  http://horsehidetriviA.