Quiz – Off and Running

A new baseball season is upon us (at least here in North America).

To get into the swing of things, since 1918, what do these players (and only these players) have in common?

Congratulations to John Autin, who solved the quiz in (gulp!) 7 hours, 53 minutes. The quiz answer is that these 7 players are the only non-pitchers who, since 1918, have appeared in 5 or more opening day games, but never as a starter.

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48 Comments on "Quiz – Off and Running"

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Diane
Guest

Something with regard to Opening Day game appearances without actually being in the starting lineup?

thomas
Guest

I don’t have the technology here at work, but I’m gonna guess it’s most positions played on Opening Day.

topper009
Guest

Its not most non-starting appearances on opening day, although Mark Sweeney is #2 on that list. The leader in John Vander Wal with 8 PH ABs on opening day.

Max
Guest

I know three of those men as ace pinch hitters. Perhaps pinch hit homers on Opening Day? Perhaps game winning pinch homers on opening day?

John Autin
Editor

O.Palmeiro never hit an O.D. HR.

stealofhome
Guest

Best I could find had something to do with 5 non-starter appearances on opening day, but Diering threw that off

stealofhome
Guest

That’s 5 appearances with a PA. Diering only has 1

topper009
Guest

Something like 1000 PAs with no opening day starts?

Library Dave
Guest

Most opening day stolen bases as a pinch runner/hitter?

bstar
Guest

“Get list of guys with opening day appearances as a sub.” As a newbie to the P-I, how would you find this, or would that be cheating?

birtelcom
Guest
–Go to the Batting Game Finder –At the top of the page, choose the option that says “Find Players with Most Matching Games in Multiple Years” –In the middle of the page, you can choose from “Starter”, “Sub” or “Either”. Choose “Sub” –At the bottom right, where you can choose “In the team’s first __ game”, insert 1 in the blank. –In order to avoid having relief pitchers (who do count as “Subs”) cluttering your list, in the Batter’s Defensive Postion” section you can click on Non-Pitcher (or, with the same effect, uncheck the Pitcher box) Then when you hit… Read more »
bstar
Guest

Fantastic, thanks birtelcom.

bstar
Guest

and to Doug as well!!!

bstar
Guest

Maybe everyone’s watching the Marlins-Cards game, Doug. They wheeled out Ali to “hand off” the first pitch…..I choked up.

topper009
Guest

I don’t understand why Jose Reyes didn’t bunt and then leave the game? Maybe that was a Met thing, the Marlins do already have a batting champ in their infield besides him.

bstar
Guest

Nice one, topper.

John Autin
Editor

Laugh it up. Just wait until Steroid Boy first takes the field.

topper009
Guest

I’m not even sure if Manny Ramirez will play at all this season so he might never take the field.

John Autin
Editor

🙂

oneblankspace
Guest

More than one opening day appearance in which the player did not have an official at-bat, pitchers excluded? Hocking had PH-BB, defensive replacement, and 0-for-1 in his first three.

John Autin
Editor

Doug, you’ve obviously found a good stumper.

Would it be OK if I make a guess? No hard feelings if you’d rather I stay out of it.

topper009
Guest

The first guess was right, just didn’t have the cutoff. It was also a little misleading because this list was really a group of guys who did something the “most often” instead of a group of guys who “were the only to do something”

Also, today Justin Verlander, MVP first place 2011, will throw his first pitch to Jacoby Ellsbury, MVP #2nd place 2011. I don’t feel like checking them all but this must be a first.

John Autin
Editor

Just checking leadoff MVPs, this is the closest I can find to the Verlander/Ellsbury matchup:

– In 1950, Phil Rizzuto (’49 MVP runner-up) was the first batter against #4 man Mel Parnell, with MVP winner Ted Williams standing in LF.

topper009
Guest

I gave in and looked around, the only other 1-2 MVP finish by a pitcher and leadoff batter was 1968, Bob Gibson and Pete Rose. They did not play on opening day.

In 1963 1-2 was Koufax and Dick Groat, they played each other on opening day in ’64 but Groat hit 2nd, so close.

1958 1-2 finishers were Jackie Jensen and Bob Turley who did face each other on opening day in 1959, but Jensen hit 5th.

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