Q. Which pitcher hit more batsmen in the twentieth century than any other moundsman?
Hint: #1 He was the first native of Kansas to receive a vote for the Hall of Fame.
Hint: #2 No other pitcher in major league history racked up more extra-base hits as a batter.
A. WALTER JOHNSON [SABR Bio]
- Ans. Johnson hit 205 batters 1907-1927.
- #1 He received 189 votes or 83.6% of the votes available & and in the Hall’s inaugural class. He was born in Humboldt, Kansas, but spent much of his youth in Weiser, Idaho and graduated from high school in California.
- #2 Had 159 EBH. Shown here.
FCR - Dan Greder, Ames, Iowa
Incorrect guesses: Bob Gibson, Joe Wood, Early Wynn, Wes Ferrell, Red Ruffing, Bob Feller, Phil Niekro, Sal Maglie
Q. Who replaced Casey Stengel as the Dodgers’ manager?
Hint: #1 As a pitcher for Brooklyn, he got along so poorly with his Hall of Fame manager that to keep peace, notices of his starts were carried to him by a clubhouse attendant.
Hint: #2 He managed in Montreal and later, Toronto.
A. BURLEIGH GRIMES [SABR Bio]
- Ans. Managed BRO 1937-1938. His record was 131-171.
- #1 Grimes & manager Wilbert Robinson did not see eye-to-eye on a number of issues.
- #2 Managing in the AA International League, he first guided first the 1939 Montreal Royals, a Dodgers affiliate. In 1942-44, he was the manager of the Pirates’ AA team, the Toronto Maple Leafs, taking the league title in 1943. The Leafs were later members of the Browns’ new AAA International League entrée, also named the Leafs, by the time of Grimes’s time as their skipper in 1952-53.
FCR - Tony Hughes, Woodbridge, Virginia
Incorrect guesses: Branch Rickey, Chuck Dressen, Billy Southworth, Sal Maglie, Dazzy Vance, Ralph Houk, Burt Shotton, Leo Durocher
Q. Which front-of the-rotation hurler led his team with twenty plus wins one season only to lead the majors in losses the following year?
Hint: #1 He then won twenty again two years after that.
Hint: #2 He surrendered a milestone hit, one achieved ever by only two batters.
A. JERRY KOOSMAN [SABR Bio]
- Ans. Led NYM in 1976 w/21 W. In 1978, led MLB w/20 L.
- #1 In 1979, led MIN in W/20 W.
- #2 On 13-Apr-1984, precisely 21 years after his 1st MLB H (a triple off PIT’s Bob Friend), Pete Rose doubled of Koosman for his 4,000th MLB H, joining Ty Cobb in the 4,000-Hit Club. Rose would add another 256 over his final 3 seasons.
FCR - Tom Cleary, Macungie, Pennsylvania
Incorrect guesses: Wilbur Wood, Steve Carlton, Mel Stottlemyre, Sr., Phil Niekro, Sam Gibson Luis Tiant, Robin Roberts, Dick Ellsworth, Virgil Trucks, Eppa Rixey
MIDWEEK BONUS —16-Jun
Q. Who took Bob Gibson’s place when Gibson broke his leg, then won nine straight decisions?
Hint: #1 He sang the National Anthem before a World Series game.
Hint: #2 He met his wife through “Damn Yankees” although he never played for the Yankees.
Hint: #3 He loved opera, jazz and once shot a moose.
A. NELSON BRILES [SABR Bio]
- Ans. Gibson’s broken leg occurred 15-Jul-1967 when it was struck by a Roberto Clemente line drive. Courageously, Hoot faced 3 more batters, but was out of the lineup until 07‑Sep. Briles stepped into the STL rotation beginning 21-Jul.
- #1 He sang the National Anthem before G 4 of the 1973 WS. (He wasn’t in that game.)
- #2 He and his wife met in the Chico (CA) High School staging of the play “Damn Yankees”. They were sill married when he passed away 40 years later.
- #3 He loved music and hunting.
FCR - Mike Caragliano, Flushing, Queens, New York
Incorrect guesses: Dick Hughes, Mudcat Grant, Al Jackson, Dick Hughes, Steve Carlton, Larry Jaster, Ron Reed
Q. Which member of the 1927 Yankees was the only left-handed pitcher to win twenty games in a season for the Brooklyn Robins?
Hint: #1 His league-leading win-loss percentage helped his team to the postseason and his franchise to their first ever World Series championship.
Hint: #2 He was once traded for a future Hall of Famer who lost five World Series and was never on the winning side.
A. DUTCH RUETHER [SABR Bio]
- Ans. Ruether was 22-12 in 1922. Only tied for 7th in the majors but he did lead the Robins. The Dodgers were called the Robins 1914-1931. A Yankee team member, but he saw no action in the brief 1927 WS.
- #1 In 1919, Ruether had a W-L % of .760 to lead the NL. The only hurler with a better mark, was his opponent in the 1st G of the WS, Eddie Cicotte.
- #2 Ruether was traded from CIN to BRO for Rube Marquard, man-for-man in December 1920.
FCR - Mark Hayne, Dumfries, Virginia
Incorrect guesses: Waite Hoyt, Herb Pennock, Burleigh Grimes
Q. Which Cal alum started the All-Star game the same year that he lost the Cy Young Award to a teammate?
Hint: #1 He surrendered one of the home runs that Willie Stargell hit completely out of Dodger Stadium.
Hint: #2 In his first full season in the majors, he led the majors in wild pitches.
A. ANDY MESSERSMITH [SABR Bio]
- Ans. Messersmith struck out 4 & surrendered 2 runs in his 3 innings of work in the 1974 ASG. He finished 2nd in the CYA voting behind record-setting reliever Mike Marshall. Messersmith attended the University of California at Berkeley.
- #1 On 08-May-1973 in beautiful Chavez Ravine, Stargell homered twice off Messersmith, the 2nd one traveling 470’ and completely out of Dodger Stadium. It was Stargell’s 2nd time breaching the famed corrugated roof, the 1st being off Alan Foster in 1969.
- #2 He had 16 WP in 1969.
FCR - Tim Swindle, Tucson
Incorrect guesses: Don Drysdale, Bill Singer, Jerry Reuss, Rick Rhoden
Q. Which player rep requested that players have a say in choosing the next commissioner?
Hint: #1 He became the third ever The Sporting News “Minor-league Player of the Year.
Hint: #2 Following the second his three career triples, he promptly stole home.
A. FRED HUTCHINSON [SABR Bio]
- Ans. Ford Frick was chosen to replace Happy Chandler as Commissioner of Baseball in 1951. Chandler had forged a reputation as the player’s commissioner. However, when Hutchinson, representing the players, asked to participate in the selection process, the idea was quickly vetoed by the owners.
- #1 He was the TSN MLPOY in 1938 playing for the Seattle Rainiers. Only Johnny Vander Meer and Charlie Keller had preceded him.
- #2 On 29-Aug-1947, Hutchinson tripled in the 3rd then, when Ellis Kinder took a big windup, he hustled home in front of the throw. Hutch also singled & won the G 5-4 for DET.
FCR - Jim Lubell, Hillsboro, Oregon
Incorrect guesses: Tino Martinez, Dick Stuart, Robin Roberts, Curt Flood
Q. Who was the first Red Sox pitcher to win a twenty-inning game?
Hint: #1 He was the first American League pitcher to win a Cy Young Award and lead the league in strikeouts in the same season.
Hint: #2 He once broke the left wrist of a former Rookie of the Year with an errant, inside pitch.
A. JIM LONBORG [SABR Bio]
- Ans. On 27-Jul-1969 in Seattle, Lonborg, the 8th BOS hurler that Sunday, got the W in a 20-inning G vs. the expansion Pilots.
- #1 IN BOS’s “Impossible Dream” year of 1967, Lonborg the AL in Ks w/246 & won the CYA. It was the only season in his 15-year career that he received even a single All-Star, MVP or CYA vote.
- #2 On 23-Jul-1966 Lonborg broke the wrist of the Twins’ Bob Allison who only missed a week of play & stoically quipped, “You can’t blame the pitchers for pitching me tight. That’s part of the game.”
FCR - Chaunce Venuto, Tooele, Utah
Incorrect guesses: Babe Ruth, Vida Blue, Bill Monbouquette, Curt Schilling Mel Parnell
WEEKLY THEME – Pitchers with double-digit career WAR ratings who surrendered home runs to pitchers in modern World Series games. (Not a comprehensive list.)
Pitcher Year Opp/P Career WAR
Briles.......................... 1968............... Mickey Lolich.............. 20.8
Grimes....................... 1920............... Jim Bagby.................. 52.8
Hutchinson................. 1940............... Bucky Walters............ 26.0
Johnson..................... 1924............... Jack Bentley............. 164.9
Koosman.................... 1969............... Dave McNally............. 53.6
Lonborg...................... 1967............... Bob Gibson................ 14.3
Messersmith............... 1974............... Ken Holtzman............. 40.2
Ruether...................... 1926............... Jess Haines................ 29.1
First Correct Respondent to Identify Theme – Philip Trostler, Norwich, Connecticut (after Briles)
Incorrect theme guesses:
Monday - Most innings pitched in a season without surrendering a home run
Tuesday - Really good hitting pitchers in the hall of fame
- Pitchers with the most wins in each decade, beginning in 1900
- Pitchers who led a league the most times in complete games
Wed - 20 game winners who also had seasons where they were 12+ games under .500? (20th Century)
Thurs - Pitchers who lost 15+ games, then improved their W-L Pct. by 250+ points in the next season
Friday - Pitchers on teams that won the World Series but were not on their team's World Series roster.
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