Quiz – Baseball Matching Game

In this quiz, we have two lists of players. 

  • Each player on the first list is related to exactly one player on the second list.
  • Each player on the second list is related to exactly one player on the first list.
  • A particular feat connects each pair of players. It is the same feat for all pairs.
  • No other pairs of players have accomplished this feat.

Congratulation to Tristram12 who identified that in the pairs of players below (the lists are matched up now) each player homered in his first WS game, and both in the same game. Those games are here.

26 thoughts on “Quiz – Baseball Matching Game

  1. 1
    Neil L. says:

    Doug, you know these quizzes become addictive, but, at first blush, you have outdone yourself this time!

    Are we allowed 20 questions? (Not counting this as one.) 🙂

  2. 3
    richard chester says:

    Are the matching pairs contemporaries?

  3. 8
    John Nacca says:

    Was the feat something accomplished in the regular season or postseason?

  4. 12
    Insert Name Here says:

    Joe Harris and Pie Traynor were contemporaries, and were each hit by exactly 31 pitches in their careers. They were also Pirates teammates in the late 1920s.

  5. 13
    Tristram12 says:

    Dumb luck, but I’ve got it, thanks to Joe Smith. Each player hit a HR in their first World Series game, during which their matched pair also hit a HR in their first World Series game. The matched pairs are:
    Joe Smith – Pie Traynor
    Hank Greenberg – Joe Medwick
    Roger Maris – Bill Mazeroski
    Dick Bartell – George Selkirk
    Don Micher – Zoilo Versailles

  6. 14
    Neil L. says:

    Wow! ~bows in awe to Tristam~

  7. 20
    Neil L. says:

    You are being too modest, Tristram. Was it Roger Maris that was your key to solving the puzzle?

    • 22
      Tristram12 says:

      Well, Joe Harris was the only player on either list that I wasn’t familiar with, so I started with his bio page in the bullpen section of BB-Ref. He hit the first back-to-back HR in WS history with Goose Goslin. As a two-player feat, that felt right so I looked 3 times to make sure Goose wasn’t on the second list. As part of that, I looked at the game log and saw that Pie Traynor hit a HR in that game as well. Going to his post-season gamelogs showed it was his first WS game as well. Then I just went to each player on the first list, confirmed a HR in their first WS game and looked at who was on the other side. By the way, Joe Harris was a heckuva player, and I’m glad I learned all about him tonight. Thanks Doug!

      • 23
        Doug says:

        Good sleuthing, Tristram12. Thanks for playing.

      • 25
        Hartvig says:

        Tristram12- Thanks for the heads up on Harris. I had heard of him but if I ever knew how good he was I had forgotten. But he seems to have all kinds of fascinating stuff going on.

        As a 23 year old he got 6 plate appearances in 2 major league games without getting a hit and yet managed an OBP of .800- 3 walks, 1 HBP, 1 sac & 1 out. Then, in spite of tearing up the minor leagues (especially when you consider the era in which he played) he has to wait 2 years for another chance which he nails (an OPS+ of 132 in spite of 0 home runs).

        Then it’s off to fight in WWI where he is gassed in the most famous battle of that war (at least from an American standpoint), the battle of the Argonne Forrest.

        Back to the majors for a year where he really tears it up with an OPS+ of 163

        Then he signs with an INDEPENDENT league team because they off him the same money as the Indians do, plus they offer to set him up in a business (can you imagine the St. Paul Saints signing away a player the caliber of a 29 year old Magglio Ordonez away from the White Sox instead of the Tigers?).

        Then it’s back to the majors where he continues to play extremely well until he’s 37 years old before spending 3 more years in the minors where he hits .342, .333 & .311 before finally hanging it up.

        And I didn’t even mention that in the middle of all that he cracked his skull in a truck accident that he had to have surgery for that led to his developing a strange batting stance.

        Fascinating stuff.

        • 26
          Tristram12 says:

          Adding to the legacy, when he joined the independent league, he received a lifetime ban from Judge Landis. Subsequently, he was the first to have such a ban overturned. Landis cited his impressive war record and implied that the gassing/head injury impaired his thinking.

  8. 24
    John Autin says:

    I’m sorry I missed this one — it sounds fiendishly good!

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