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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 7-29-2014

Pittsburgh Press, July 29, 1914:

Manager Clark Griffith, of Washington, blames his team’s failure to be higher up in the race on the fact that no less than six of his players are inveterate cigaret smokers and inhalers.
...
The Nationals’ manager argues that it is impossible for a ball player to do himself justice when he takes liberties with cigarets, and he called all his smokers to task and gave them to understand that the habit must cease if they expect to be of any service to their team.

Smoking annoys me too, Clark, but your team’s failure is probably more a result of your starting catcher hitting .169/.274/.226 and your starting shortstop hitting .203/.274/.243.

Dan Lee is some pumkins Posted: July 29, 2014 at 06:48 AM | 46 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: clark griffith, dugout, history

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   1. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: July 29, 2014 at 07:28 AM (#4759531)
The Game of 7/28/84 provides something of a template for beating the best team in baseball that year, while also demonstrating that it was really, really difficult.
   2. Chris Fluit Posted: July 29, 2014 at 07:53 AM (#4759537)
Blue Jays acquired infielder Danny Valencia from the Royals yesterday.
   3. Dan Lee is some pumkins Posted: July 29, 2014 at 07:53 AM (#4759538)
Happy birthday to Earl Moore, the one and only major leaguer born in my adopted hometown.

Decent Birthday Team today, though I did some juggling on the infield.

Alicea is a second baseman playing third base and Wert is a third baseman playing shortstop. Both are their second most commonly played positions, and I moved Wert because Alicea only started three career games at SS. Feel free to move Alicea to short and Wert back to third if you prefer.

C: Chief Meyers
1B: Dan Driessen
2B: George Cutshaw
3B: Luis Alicea
SS: Don Wert
LF: Felix Mantilla
CF: Emmet Heidrick
RF: Gary Thomasson

SP: Earl Moore
SP: Chad Billingsley
SP: Dave LaPoint
SP: Ken Kravec
SP: Roy Henshaw
RP: Greg Minton
RP: Mike Williams
   4. AndrewJ Posted: July 29, 2014 at 08:10 AM (#4759540)
One of the first things I did when I bought the handheld Franklin Baseball Encyclopedia about 20 years was determine the player whose career batting average came closest to exactly .300 without reaching it. The winner was Emmet Heidrick, whose career average was 0.29996718083360682638660978011159.
   5. Misirlou was a Buddhist prodigy Posted: July 29, 2014 at 08:42 AM (#4759545)
One of the first things I did when I bought the handheld Franklin Baseball Encyclopedia about 20 years was determine the player whose career batting average came closest to exactly .300 without reaching it. The winner was Emmet Heidrick, whose career average was 0.29996718083360682638660978011159.


If Hanley Ramirez goes 0 for 6 and is then hit by a bus, he'll beat that record with a career average of 0.299978
   6. DKDC Posted: July 29, 2014 at 08:49 AM (#4759547)
Amazing not-so-amazing stat of the day: every pitcher in the Orioles rotation has an ERA under 4.

But that’s not as impressive as it sounds for a number of reasons:

-My sense of what sounds like a good ERA is hasn’t fully adjusted to the current scoring environment – a 3.92 ERA is league average in Camden Yards this year, according to BBREF.
-Most of the rotation barely qualifies - three of the starters are in the 3.90s and the best is only 3.67.
-This stat excludes one starter with a 4.50 ERA who is not exactly being fastracked back from the DL because of his ineffectiveness.
-Even accounting for the Orioles excellent defense, the ERA-FIP gap is large, and peripherals don’t support the ERAs for most of the rotation. Miguel Gonzalez has a sub-4 ERA despite allowing batters to hit .271/.343/.460, which is Kevin Correria territory.
   7. kthejoker Posted: July 29, 2014 at 09:11 AM (#4759553)
I've never looked up players born in the same city as me ... only 2 of them, a '96 Phillies cup of coffee named Bronson Heflin and ..

Hod Lisenbee, who had an interesting-ish career.

Debuted for the Senators in 1927, led the league in shutouts and got MVP votes.
Had a bad and short 1928 (injured?) and was traded to the Red Sox in the offseason with 4 other guys for Buddy Myer, who the Senators had traded away for 45 games of Topper Rigney 2 years prior.

Many people note the Myer-Rigney trade as one of the more lopsided ones, often pointing to Myer's career, but Myer spent almost all of his post-trade career after the trade with the Senators because he was traded back for Lisenbee et al. - which was an almost equally lopsided trade.)
Anyway, he spent 4 meh years with Boston, and then vanished.
Popped back up with the Athletics in 1936.

And then somehow made a comeback in 1945 at the age of 46 with the Reds for 31 games.
   8. Dan Lee is some pumkins Posted: July 29, 2014 at 09:21 AM (#4759558)
I share a birthplace with 13 MLBers (including the great Dirk Hayhurst), though I grew up in a suburb that only produced one player: Rabbit Warstler. 1930s middle infielder, absolutely could not hit a lick, couldn't run either despite the nickname. Advanced defensive metrics like his glove, though he led the NL with 49 errors in both 1937 and 1938.

Ten minutes north or ten minutes west and I could have claimed Thurman Munson or Tommy Henrich. No dice, though.
   9. BDC Posted: July 29, 2014 at 09:28 AM (#4759561)
I once sat next to Luis Alicea in a dugout before a game, in my sports-columnist days. He held a bat between his legs and pounded his glove pocket on the knob, then turned the glove backwards and pounded the back of the glove on it, all the while bouncing up and down like a kid waiting for recess and cackling at the top of his lungs. Guy really enjoyed getting ready for games.
   10. BDC Posted: July 29, 2014 at 09:38 AM (#4759564)
Best player born in my birth city was Wes Parker, though there were 13 others, some of whom had decent careers.

My birthplace features an unusual concentration of theater people, probably because it features a great theater school (my father was a graduate). The most famous person born there, in any field, depends on your generation: it's either Charlton Heston or Eddie Vedder.

I lived in my birthplace for all of two days, though, and I have never stayed overnight there again. It's simply where the hospital was (which may account for a bunch of the other famous births there, too).
   11. JJ1986 Posted: July 29, 2014 at 09:42 AM (#4759565)
Ron Villone is the best player born in the same city I was. Jack Armstrong is the only other notable one.
   12. Batman Posted: July 29, 2014 at 09:53 AM (#4759569)
Eight players were born in the same city as me. Kenny Lofton is easily the best one. I was born about halfway between Lofton and the most-recent player, Jason Repko. The others are all around my dad's age or older.
   13. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: July 29, 2014 at 10:03 AM (#4759575)
I assumed that no MLBer had been from my hometown, but it looks like there's one, who debuted with the Phillies in 1921 at age 33. There's no such thing as "Dallas City, Pennsylvania", but since the town of Dallas was founded less than a decade before he was born I guess they were calling it Dallas City to distinguish from Dallas Township.
   14. Chris Fluit Posted: July 29, 2014 at 10:10 AM (#4759576)
The best baseball player from my birth city is Wally Pipp.

Correction: Pipp was born in Chicago but raised in Grand Rapids. The next best player from Grand Rapids is probably Mickey Stanley.
   15. Steve N Posted: July 29, 2014 at 10:38 AM (#4759593)
I share my birthday with several players, including 3 Hall of Famers. Frank Chance, Frankie Frisch, and Waite Hoyt. Not inner circle but not bad.
   16. Batman Posted: July 29, 2014 at 10:47 AM (#4759597)
If I die where I live now, I'll share a death city with Casey Stengel, Babe Herman, and Rod Dedeaux.
   17. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: July 29, 2014 at 10:55 AM (#4759600)
THE Rod Dedeaux?
   18. tolbuck Posted: July 29, 2014 at 10:58 AM (#4759601)
I share a birth city with 29 players. The list includes 1 HOF (Roger Bresnahan) and the player who hit the first HR in AL history (Erve Beck).
   19. just plain joe Posted: July 29, 2014 at 11:49 AM (#4759644)
No one from my hometown has ever played in the majors, not surprising since I come from a small town in Kentucky which is not exactly a baseball hotbed. The best player born on my birthday is probably Ted Lyons, who pitched for the White Sox for 21 years and is in the Hall of Fame.
   20. esseff Posted: July 29, 2014 at 11:49 AM (#4759646)
Three or four* major-leaguers share my birthplace, but none played more than one season, and two, both pitchers, played only one game. None got as many as 100 major-league ABs. Nevertheless, one of them -- Nig Lipscomb -- has the distinction of being both a pitcher and position player in the majors.

* - Three for sure, and a fourth is from a place similar enough in name to be a possibility.
   21. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: July 29, 2014 at 11:50 AM (#4759647)
6. Amazing not-so-amazing stat of the day: every pitcher in the Orioles rotation has an ERA under 4.

But that’s not as impressive as it sounds for a number of reasons:

-My sense of what sounds like a good ERA is hasn’t fully adjusted to the current scoring environment – a 3.92 ERA is league average in Camden Yards this year, according to BBREF.
-Most of the rotation barely qualifies - three of the starters are in the 3.90s and the best is only 3.67.
-This stat excludes one starter with a 4.50 ERA who is not exactly being fastracked back from the DL because of his ineffectiveness.
-Even accounting for the Orioles excellent defense, the ERA-FIP gap is large, and peripherals don’t support the ERAs for most of the rotation. Miguel Gonzalez has a sub-4 ERA despite allowing batters to hit .271/.343/.460, which is Kevin Correria territory.

You might find this interesting, which I dug up yesterday:

Baltimore pitchers have a 3.02 ERA when Caleb Joseph is catching, versus a 4.24 when anyone else is behind the plate.
   22. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: July 29, 2014 at 11:53 AM (#4759649)
One of the first things I did when I bought the handheld Franklin Baseball Encyclopedia about 20 years was determine the player whose career batting average came closest to exactly .300 without reaching it. The winner was Emmet Heidrick, whose career average was 0.29996718083360682638660978011159.


For a similar little factoid, a while back--I think during last winter's A-Rod news--I learned that Frank Demaree was the only player in baseball history whose career batting average officially dropped from .300 to .299 by his making an out in his final plate appearance. (Of course, Demaree's average actually just dropped from .2996 to .2994 or so, but, well, we round up in this game!)
   23. The kids disappeared, now Der-K has too much candy Posted: July 29, 2014 at 12:09 PM (#4759660)
I've never looked up players born in the same city as me...

Interesting line of questioning you've prompted; anybody know what's the largest city (or town or whatever) never to have produced a big leaguer? (My birthplace of 21k people has not, though I suppose I could always double my velocity in the near future.)
   24. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: July 29, 2014 at 12:25 PM (#4759678)
Interesting line of questioning you've prompted; anybody know what's the largest city (or town or whatever) never to have produced a big leaguer?

I'll start the bidding with Aurora, Colorado. Population of 325,708; zero baseball players.
   25. The kids disappeared, now Der-K has too much candy Posted: July 29, 2014 at 12:36 PM (#4759689)
Wow - pretty good. Minor leaguer Darin McDonald was born there, whose brother Donnell stuck in the bigs for awhile but, yeah.
   26. Perry Posted: July 29, 2014 at 12:47 PM (#4759701)
I'll start the bidding with Aurora, Colorado. Population of 325,708; zero baseball players.


That's a little misleading, though, since Aurora's population didn't crack 10,000 until 1950 and was only 75,000 as recently as 1970.
   27. DKDC Posted: July 29, 2014 at 12:53 PM (#4759707)
Kevin Gausman went to high school in Aurora, and his birthplace is listed as Centennial, CO.

Only problem with that is the Centennial, CO didn’t exist prior to 2001.

So where was Gausman really born?

edit: 2011 Yankee 5th rounder Gregory Bird has a chance to play in the majors some day.
   28. bread and rice Posted: July 29, 2014 at 12:58 PM (#4759710)
that no less than six of his players are inveterate cigaret smokers and inhalers.


Maybe it's just the way this was written, but is it me or does this imply there were more players on the team that were smokers but not inhalers?

And was that at thing back in the day? Smoke cigarettes, but not inhale?
   29. Perry Posted: July 29, 2014 at 12:59 PM (#4759712)
No players from the little southern Ohio town of my birth; 4 from the slightly bigger one where I grew up. The most noteworthy was Allan Anderson, a lefty junkballer who won the AL ERA title in 1988 at age 24 but who went downhill and disappeared quickly after that. He actually grew up 4 or 5 houses down the road from our place, although I was long gone by then. My parents knew his family.

   30. Batman Posted: July 29, 2014 at 01:13 PM (#4759721)
anybody know what's the largest city (or town or whatever) never to have produced a big leaguer?
Shanghai, China.

I know, I know.
   31. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: July 29, 2014 at 01:38 PM (#4759734)
26. That's a little misleading, though, since Aurora's population didn't crack 10,000 until 1950 and was only 75,000 as recently as 1970.

I unfortunately, like a lot of Americans, know only one thing about Aurora Colorado, and it's not a good thing.
   32. The kids disappeared, now Der-K has too much candy Posted: July 29, 2014 at 01:55 PM (#4759740)
Beyond that, I "knew" it was near Centennial and that there's been a few good ballplayers out of the Cherry Creek system (though I couldn't have said squat about who existed when and how quickly that area grew.)

Oh, Batman? Boooooooooo.
   33. Super Creepy Derek Lowe (GGC) Posted: July 29, 2014 at 02:34 PM (#4759757)
Without looking it up, best player born in Hartford, CT is probably Schoolboy Johnny Taylor; a Negro League pitcher who had a few good years and probably got hurt and never really recovered.
   34. Tom Nawrocki Posted: July 29, 2014 at 02:50 PM (#4759763)
Only problem with that is the Centennial, CO didn’t exist prior to 2001.


Centennial was incorporated in 2001. Before that, that same area was just "unincorporated Arapahoe County," but it had 100,000 people in it. I think it's fair to call Gausman's birthplace Centennial.
   35. BDC Posted: July 29, 2014 at 02:58 PM (#4759767)
Evidently one graduate of my high school ever played pro ball. He had an eight-year career, got as high as A ball (that was back in the days before the A, AA, AAA classification), and was so little a legend a few years later that I never heard of him. That was pre-draft times, and he signed with the Phillies (the local major-league club), I suppose because he was scouted locally and/or had some contacts that got him a look. It shows how hard it is to make the major leagues. My high school, though modest in size, has a very good sports program, won some state titles, and sent various players to major colleges in football and basketball. But there are just very few major-league baseball players, even today.

Lots of notable players from my college, including one Hall of Famer pitcher. Quite a few from my graduate school too, including a guy who was a teammate of that Hall of Famer, and had the game-winning hit in that HOFer's most important victory. Now there's a What's My Line trivia question :)

   36. Flack42 Posted: July 29, 2014 at 02:59 PM (#4759768)
How does one search for hometown players?
Thanks.
   37. Sweatpants Posted: July 29, 2014 at 03:04 PM (#4759775)
http://www.baseball-reference.com/bio/

That's one way, anyway.
   38. BDC Posted: July 29, 2014 at 03:04 PM (#4759776)
In B-Ref PI, you can search by US, then state of birth; and then sort the resulting list by city (the far right column). There may be an easier way, but that will do it.

EDIT: Yeah, #37 is a little bit easier :)
   39. Random Transaction Generator Posted: July 29, 2014 at 04:16 PM (#4759844)
George Kottaras is the only one from my hometown (Scarborough, ON Canada)

   40. Random Transaction Generator Posted: July 29, 2014 at 04:19 PM (#4759850)
So the Yankees now have a Zoilo and Zelous on their MLB roster.
How many other teams had two players whose names started with 'Z' on their MLB roster at the same time?

   41. djrelays Posted: July 29, 2014 at 04:28 PM (#4759860)
28. bread and rice Posted: July 29, 2014 at 12:58 PM (#4759710)
that no less than six of his players are inveterate cigaret smokers and inhalers.


Maybe it's just the way this was written, but is it me or does this imply there were more players on the team that were smokers but not inhalers?

And was that at thing back in the day? Smoke cigarettes, but not inhale?


I suspect he meant smokers AND/OR inhalers. Snuff is a tobacco inhalant, much more common then than now.
   42. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: July 29, 2014 at 04:28 PM (#4759861)
So the Yankees now have a Zoilo and Zelous on their MLB roster.
How many other teams had two players whose names started with 'Z' on their MLB roster at the same time?


It's probably happened before, but I'm sure this is the first duo in which neither one is named "Zach".
   43. BDC Posted: July 29, 2014 at 05:39 PM (#4759927)
OK I am off to the ballpark, and call me shallow but I am SO pleased that Derek Jeter is in the starting lineup for the last Yankee game I'll see this year. Zoilo is too, though not Zelous.
   44. philphan Posted: July 29, 2014 at 06:08 PM (#4759943)
Darn. I was fairly confident that the best major leaguer from my home town was pitcher Chris Nabholz, and he certainly grew up in my home town. But BR has him born in Harrisburg, which may be because his parents were temporarily living there or may have been for medical reasons. Whatever, that leaves me with Lance Rautzhan....
   45. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: July 29, 2014 at 07:09 PM (#4759998)
The Game of 7/28/14 is more or less what everyone fears baseball becoming if the current trends continue: tons of strikeouts, tons of relievers, and scarcely a hit or run to be found. On the other hand, it was also 15 innings, so there's still a certain amount of appeal to be had.
   46. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: July 29, 2014 at 07:14 PM (#4760000)
My birth city is respectably large, but has a fairly checkered baseball history - its best playing native is probably either Tim Flannery or Steve Sparks, with an option on Dylan Bundy depending on how his career goes.

The best overall baseball career from here, however, is going into the Hall of Fame this year.

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