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Fun Facts O' The... Whatever
Sunday, January 13, 2008
As faithful readers of this here bloggity (and by "faithful" I mean "hey at least you're here right now reading this!"), you're surely familiar with the "Fun Fact O' The Day" feature that I have over on the top of the right sidebar. Every once in a while the little nugget I put up isn't particularly "fun" - occasionally it's just a stat when I'm tired or in a rush because I'm at work and I have to pretend to be doing something important - but I try to choose things that are, like me, moderately amusing. Since there is nothing but Clemens, Clemens, Clemens, Clemens, and a dash of Santanamania in the news these days, I thought I'd take a breather from forcing myself to think of something more to say about that shit (give me credit for trying... at least that timeline was kinda unique... No? Get out of my sight) and lighten things up with a recap of the Fun Facts O' The Day I've compiled thus far! Enjoy, munecas, and if you have some interesting trivia or factoids you think I should use, let me know!



From 1972 to 1980, MC Hammer served as a batboy with the Oakland Athletics under team owner Charlie Finley, who lived in the Midwest. Hammer acted as a clubhouse "informant" to Finley, and was even dubbed "Executive Vice President" by the owner. Perhaps he could have been a player himself someday, but I guess he was Too Legit to Quit his dream of uniting the world with parachute pants.

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Ken Griffey Sr. and Jr. are the only father-son duo in the MLB to ever hit home runs in the same game.

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After graduating from the University of Minnesota, Dave Winfield was drafted by the San Diego Padres, the Minnesota Vikings (despite not playing college football!), the Atlanta Hawks of the NBA, and the Utah Stars of the ABA. He is one of only three men ever drafted in three different pro sports (the other being Dave Logan and Charlie Ward) and the only man to be drafted by four leagues.

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During his illustrious career, Derek Jeter has amassed a batting average of .317, he's an 8-time All-Star, was awarded the Gold Glove twice and the Silver Slugger once, has hit 200+ hits five different times, and holds a .314 average in the post-season
...but he's never won the MVP!

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Ty Cobb holds the record for stealing home 54 times during his career - the man in 2nd place only did it 33 times!

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Only 3 players have hit home runs from both sides of the plate in the same game during the playoffs, and only Bernie Williams has accomplished this during two
playoff games (1995 ALDS and 1996 ALDS).

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Knocking in 10+ runs in a single game is rarer than a perfect game or even a 4-homer game - just 12 players have done it. The most recent was A-Rod on 04-26-2005.

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During a two week span, Mickey Cochrane, Jimmie Foxx and Pinky Higgins all hit for the cycle with the 1933 Philadelphia Athletics.

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The greatest reliably recorded speed at which a baseball has been pitched is 100.9 mph by Nolan Ryan at Anaheim Stadium in California on August 20, 1974.

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Lou Gehrig hit 3 grand slams over a 4-day period in 1931 (Aug 29, Aug 31 & Sept 1).

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Hughie Jennings holds the record for being hit by pitches - he was plunked 287 times during his 17-year career!

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The Yanks' Phil Rizzuto was the first ever mystery guest on the classic panel show What's My Line in 1950.

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Bob Dylan told Rolling Stone Magazine that Derek Jeter is his favorite baseball player.

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Sam "Wahoo" Crawford holds the record for most career triples (309 over 19 seasons with the Tigers and the Reds), and was also the first player to have led both the National and American League in home runs (1901 and 1908) during his career.

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Rickey Henderson is one of only two players (with Eric Davis) to steal over 80 bases and hit over 20 home runs in the same season.

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Steve Garvey holds the record for the most consecutive games without committing an error - 193 (from 6/26/83 - 4/14/85).

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Barry Bonds leads all active players in home runs, RBI, walks, intentional walks, on-base percentage, runs, games, extra-base hits, at-bats per home run, and total bases.

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Joba "Just TRY Not To Love Me. You Cannot Do It." Chamberlain has thrown his slider 16 times in 9 innings and not one batter has even made contact with it.

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Roger Clemens and Kerry Wood are the only pitchers to have struck out 20 batters in a 9-inning game (bonus: Rocket did it twice!)

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In his first 23 seasons as owner, Big Stein changed managers 20 times - including dismissing Billy Martin on five separate occasions.

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Paul O'Neill is not just a baseball player but a drummer, too! He has performed onstage with John Mellencamp.

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After losing a game to the Yanks in 2004, Pedro Martinez remarked in a press conference, "They beat me. They're that good right now. They're that hot. I just tip my hat and call the Yankees my daddy."

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When the Indians put a stop to Joe DiMaggio's 56-game hit streak on July 17, 1941, he remarked: "did you know if I got a hit tonight I would have made $10,000? The Heinz 57 people wanted to make some kind of deal."

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The only players to have hit 4 consecutive home runs during a single game are Mike Cameron, Rocky Colavito, Carlos Delgado, Lou Gehrig, Bobby Lowe and Mike Schmidt.

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Tommy Lasorda is a not just a homophobic sonofabitch ashamed of his own son, he's also quite a business man: he appeared in TV ads for Slim Fast diet shakes and Tums antacids, briefly owned a restaurant chain bearing his name, and also bottled and sold a failed brand of spaghetti sauce through his company Lasorda Foods Inc.

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Roy Oswalt received a very interesting bonus for his work in the 2005 ALCS: a bulldozer. Before starting game 6, Astros owner Drayton McLane told Oswalt that if he earned a ìWî in the game he would reward him by buying him anything he wanted; after he won the game he Astros had to modify his contract to include a "bulldozer addendum".

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Miguel Cabrera is a practitioner of SanterÌa and became a Babalao (a high priest) in the 2006 offseason.

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As a senior in high school, A-Rod was first team prep All-American, hitting .505 with 9 home runs, 36 RBI, and 35 steals in 35 tries in 33 games, and was selected as the USA Baseball Junior Player of the Year and as Gatorade's national baseball student athlete of the year.

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Yogi Berra, Joe DiMaggio and Mickey Mantle are the only players to win 3 MVPs as a Yankee.

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Thurman Munson made only 1 error while behind the plate in 1971 (he was knocked unconscious by a runner, dislodging the ball). He went on to win 3 straight Gold Glove Awards starting in 1973.

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When the New York Mets placed Bobby Bonilla on unconditional waivers in 2000, they agreed to pay out the remainder of his contract by deferring the remaining $5.9 million, instead giving him 25 equal payments of $1,193,248.20 each July 1 from 2011 to 2035, for a total of $29,831,205. Summary: This is the dumbest thing I've ever heard.

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Kaz Matsui he is the only major league player to hit a home run in his first plate appearance of his first 3 major league seasons (2004, 2005, and 2006, all with the Mets).

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Former MLB pitcher Turk Wendell was... well, a tad on the nutty side. Some examples of his eccentricity include crouching every time his catcher stood up, insisting that the umpire roll him the ball instead of throwing it, wearing a necklace made of the claws and teeth of animals he hunted, and taking giant leaps over the basepath when entering or leaving the field.

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1800's baseball legend Cap Anson, who played in a record 27 consecutive seasons, was well known to be a racist and refused to play in exhibition games versus dark-skinned players. Classy!

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On October 8, 2005, Nomaaaah Garciaparra and his uncle Victor were alerted to the screams of two women who had fallen into Boston Harbor outside his condominium. One of the women sustained injuries to her head after hitting the pier on her way in. Garciaparra quickly jumped into the harbor and saved both women, who were later taken to the hospital.

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After blowing the final game of the 2007 season and therefore eliminating the Mets from playoff contention, starting pitcher Tom Glavine said to reporters: "I'm not devastated". I think the rest of the team - and the fans - were, Tom...

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Vince Coleman had some issues in 1993. First, he swung a golf club in the clubhouse and injured Dwight Gooden's arm, and 3 months later he was charged with endangerment when he threw a lit firecracker into a crowd of baseball fans waiting for autographs in the Dodger Stadium parking lot. The explosion injured three children, and he was sentenced to 200 hours of community service and suspended by the Mets for the rest of season.

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During a Spring Training game in 2001, the Big Unit threw a pitch and beaned - and killed! - a bird that got caught in the crossfire. The Yankees Chick hates birds, so it's a-ok with me.

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On April 22nd, 2007, Yankees rookie Chase Wright - who up until this point had given up just 4 home runs to the previous 673 hitters he'd faced (in the majors and minors) - needed a mere 10 pitches to serve up 4 home runs in a row to the Red Sox. Naturally, the four hitters who bashed them had combined for only 4 homers all season before that, in 218 at-bats.
courtesy of Jayson Stark

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On back-to-back May nights in the same ballpark, the Padres and Braves unfurled a matchup of two starting pitchers with 532 combined wins (Greg Maddux versus John Smoltz) 24 hours after a matchup of pitchers with exactly one win (Justin Germano versus Anthony Lerew).
courtesy of Jayson Stark

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The 2007 Devil Rays' designated hitters combined to bat just .239 -- which was 125 points lower than their pitchers (who hit .364 in interleague play).
courtesy of Jayson Stark

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Yankees rookie Edwar Ramirez had a July 20 outing in which he threw 19 pitches -- only two of them for strikes... and one of those two was mashed for a grand slam by .179 hitter Dioner Navarro.
courtesy of Jayson Stark

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On 8/21/07, hombre tan loco Ozzie Guillen used five different pitchers -- in a span of five pitches. Ehren Wassermann got a fly-ball out. Mike Myers gave up a single on the next pitch. Ryan Bukvich allowed a single on the next pitch. Matt Thornton got a double play on the next pitch. Bobby Jenks started the next inning with pitch No. 5.
courtesy of Jayson Stark

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In June, the Brewers became the first team in history to get 22 hits in one game and then no hits the next. I don't care HOW many hits they get or don't get, that goddamn home-run slide is the coolest special feature in any ballpark around!
courtesy of Jayson Stark

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There are currently 252 MLB players that have accumulated at least 1,000 RBI in their career, with Hank Aaron leading the pack with 2,297. A-Rod is currently #47 on the list with 1,507, just 791 shy of breaking the record - and he's got at least 10 years to do it, assuming he doesn't suffer some horrible injury...

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Actor Paul Giamatti's father was the 7th MLB commissioner. One notable move he made during his tenure was agreeing to the deal that terminated the Pete Rose betting scandal by permitting Rose to voluntarily withdraw from the sport, avoiding further punishment.

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Keith Hernandez won the "Mustache Madness" contest on newsday.com in 2007. EXTREME awesome points go to Newsday for putting together a super-intense Final-Four-esque bracket for the challenge.
P.S: Man-Fur!

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On 5/4/63, Bob Shaw of the Milwaukee Braves tied the record for most balks during an inning (3), set a new Major League record for balks in a game (5), AND his team became the first ever to commit six (6) balks during a nine-inning game. Too bad no one really even knows what a balk is...

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The San Diego Padres have now finished above .500 for 4 consecutive years - a first in franchise history.

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Scott Olsen, tonight's starter for the Marlins, got into some legal trouble earlier in the year: on July 21st he was pulled over for drunk driving, and when he resisted arrest he was TASERED. Classy!

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On August 3, 2007, Melky hit a ground rule double that didn't get past 1st base. He hit a line drive up the middle that struck the leg of Royals pitcher Ryan Braun, deflected off Braun's leg at a right angle, bounced on the Yankee dugout and into the stands on the first base side. He was awarded a ground rule double, and the Yankees went on to win the game, 7-1.

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The only players to have hit 4 consecutive home runs during a single game are Mike Cameron, Rocky Colavito, Carlos Delgado, Lou Gehrig, Bobby Lowe and Mike Schmidt.

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Among his many other amazing accomplishments, Honus Wagner hit five grand slam inside-the-park home runs during his career!

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October 8, 1956 Don Larsen pitched a perfect game for the Yanks against the Dodgers in Game 5 of the World Series. It remains the only no-hitter of any type ever pitched in the post-season.

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In 1962, the brand spankin'new National League expansion team, the New York Mets, lost 120 of 160 games - a loss record that stands to this day.

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There are only 5 players that have hit 3 homers in a single post-season game: Adam Kennedy (10/13/02), George Brett (10/06/78), Reggie Jackson (10/18/77), Bob Robertson (10/3/71), and Babe Ruth - twice (10/9/26 and 10/6/26).

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On July 15, 2007, the Phillies lost their 10,000th game as a franchise - the first professional team in any sports to reach that mark. Congrats?


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Craig Biggio is the only player in the history of baseball with 3000 hits, 600 doubles, 400 stolen bases, and 250 home runs. He fell just 9 home runs short of joining the 300-300 club (300 homers and 300 stolen bases) - he would have become the 7th player to achieve that feat.

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Besides holding the honor of being beloved in San Diego despite a couple of seriously crappy seasons (if there is a more forgiving fanbase, I don't know of it), Ryan Klesko is famous for other things: He hosts "Ryan Klesko's Adventures", a show on the Outdoor Network that follows him on a variety of outdoor activities, including hunting, fishing, and surfing.

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In 2006, Ozzie Guillén and A.J. Pierzynski appeared on an episode of TNA iMPACT! Ozzie hit Simon Diamond with a chair after Diamond squared up to A.J. Pierzynski during a practice session. It was all real.
WATCH IT!!!

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According to Michael Kay, Joba Chamberlain's actual name was Justin, but his niece was unable to pronounce the name correctly, pronouncing it "Joba". He grew to prefer "Joba" and even had his name legally changed. Now... that's a cute story and all... but who in their right mind opts to go with JOBA over JUSTIN? That niece must have been pretty fucking cute.

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Goddamn that was a lot longer than I thought it would be. If you read this whole thing, you must have as "thrilling" a life as I do. Congratulations!


Labels:

posted by Yankees Chick @ Sunday, January 13, 2008  
8 Comments:
  • At 8:27 AM, Anonymous yanks26 said…

    Good stuff on a January day waitichersng for spring training. Only 33 more days to pitchers & cat

     
  • At 12:49 PM, Blogger Wolf In Pinstripes said…

    What a great list. You do such a good job of keeping up with stuff like this. As yanks26 said, it's good read while we are waiting for ST to start. Good stuff, YC.

     
  • At 1:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    That MC Hammer pic is classic!

     
  • At 3:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I'm feeling you on the lack of baseball news - thanks for keeping up with your efforts to provide the bloggin' world with SOMETHING to read during these lean times!!!

    At least spring training starts relatively soon...

     
  • At 10:13 AM, Anonymous Harsha said…

    hey YC, great post! Didn't Garrett Anderson have 10 rbi's in a game this past season (2007)?

     
  • At 11:52 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Maybe I misunderstood and I'm not trying to be a know it all jerk but Garrent Anderson was the last person to have 10 RBI's in a game. I remember because it was against the Yankees.

    I did enjoy the list and your Blog YC.

     
  • At 1:20 PM, Blogger Yankees Chick said…

    i believe you are right anon... that fact o' the day was posted before that, though :) so when i copied and pasted all the old ones, that one was still on my list! i shall update...

     
  • At 8:59 AM, Blogger Scott said…

    Cool YC I never thought you actually copied and pasted all that. Makes sense, either way it was a fun read especially tring to wind the clock down after a long day at work.

     
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