The 2014 Baseball Hall of Fame ballot was released this week, prompting former Bus Leaguer Michael Lortz to shoot me a link and suggest a few possible new members of the Bizarro Hall of Fame, whose membership includes anyone listed on the real Hall of Fame ballot who does not receive any votes.
Thursday, November 28, 2013
Tuesday, October 22, 2013
Growing up as a baseball fan with a late October
birthday, it was always disappointing that I never got to see a game on that
day. My only hope, albeit a slim one, was the World Series. I’ll never forget
when an earthquake struck San Francisco before Game 3 of the 1989 Series,
delaying the action for nearly two weeks and making Brian’s Birthday Baseball a
very real possibility. Alas, Oakland took no pity on the Giants, finishing off
a four game sweep on October 28, just two days short.
Wednesday, October 09, 2013
During Game Three of the America League Division Series between the Red Sox and Rays, one of the members of the broadcast team (may have been Brian Anderson) was talking about Brandon Workman, who recorded the final two outs of the eighth inning, and mentioned that he had started the season at Triple-A Pawtucket.
Saturday, October 05, 2013
Wednesday, October 02, 2013
I’m not exactly sure what made me think of this (it might have been when I realized that Tim Beckham had made his major league debut this season), but I recently found myself wondering how many times a team has fielded more than one first overall draft pick in the same season.
Turns out, it’s one of those things that isn’t really rare but still happens often enough to be interesting: since the draft began in 1965, twenty different teams have employed forty combinations of number one picks in the same season, with 18 of those combos spanning multiple years.
A few interesting things that stood out:
1. The 1995 Seattle Mariners (my friend Chris’s favorite team, for sentimental reasons) hold the record for most number ones on a team, with four: Tim Belcher, Andy Benes, Ken Griffey, and Alex Rodriguez. Belcher and Benes were both starting pitchers, so regrettably there was never a time when all four were on the field at the same time, and Griffey missed half the season with a broken wrist, but there were three games in which three players appeared:
May 25: Griffey started in center, batted third, and went 0-4; Rodriguez started at shortstop, batted seventh, and went 2-3 with an RBI and a run scored; Belcher started and gave up three runs on five hits in 5.2 innings.
September 11: Griffey started in center, batted third, and 1-2 with a homerun and three walks; Rodriguez was a ninth inning defensive replacement; Belcher started and gave up three runs on eight hits in 5.1 innings.
September 20: Griffey started in center, batted third, and went 2-5 with a homerun; Rodriguez was a ninth inning defensive replacement; Benes started and gave up two runs on five hits in seven innings.
2. Three former number ones appeared for the Tampa Bay Rays on September 20, 2013. David Price started and allowed two runs on nine hits in five innings; Delmon Young struck out as a pinch-hitter in the 11th inning; Tim Beckham (in his second major league game) entered as a pinch-hitter in the 14th inning and went 0-3.
3. One other team had three number ones: the San Diego Padres. Where the examples mentioned above could point to specific games, however, the Padres had three players who were teammates for parts of three seasons: Bill Almon, Mike Ivie, and Dave Roberts.
1974: Almon (16); Ivie (12); Roberts (113) 1975: Almon (6); Ivie (111); Roberts (33) 1977: Almon (155); Ivie (134); Roberts (82)
Call me lazy, but I’m gonna go ahead and assume that those three fellas played together a bunch of times during those seasons, especially 1977.
Also, I just noticed this and don’t dare investigate further because doing so would almost certainly destroy my brain, but that 1977 Padres team also featured and outfield of George Hendrick (first overall pick in the January phase of the 1968 draft), Dave Kingman (first overall pick in the secondary phase of the June 1970 draft), and Dave Winfield (drafted fourth overall in 1973, so of course he’s the only Hall of Famer).
4. No player drafted first overall has played for the Marlins since the franchise came into existence in 1993. The team selected Adrian Gonzalez first in 2000, but traded him to Texas with two other players for Ugueth Urbina three years later. Ironically, Gonzalez later became the first number one to play for the Red Sox when he was traded to Boston in 2011. Fellow 1993 expansion team Colorado has employed just one former number one, Matt Anderson in 1995.
5. At least five first overall picks had the middle name Wayne: Tim Belcher, Chipper Jones, Jeff King, Dave Roberts, and Mike Moore. That seems like an awfully high number for a name that I don’t think of as insanely popular.
Saturday, September 28, 2013
A few days ago, I got it in my head that while it
seemed unlikely, the Houston Astros could potentially lose 110 games this
season. I looked into it a little bit, saw that it had been several years since
a team lost that many, and went about my life, assuming that they would win a
couple and finish the season in the 105-109 range.
Monday, September 09, 2013