Former major league pitcher Jim Kaat is providing the TV color commentary for MLB Network coverage of the Tigers-Athletics series. In an HHS reader discussion of that series (and others), a side discussion arose on Jim Kaat’s HOF credentials, during which I offered up the unusual factoid that Kaat’s “historical span” (for want of a better term) covers some 69 seasons of major-league baseball, from 1939 to 2007. This notion is based on the fact that Kaat pitched to both Ted Williams and Julio Franco.
HHS reader RJ thought this might make an interesting blog topic, so let’s find out.
The name of this game is Connect the HOFers. The way it works is to find players who played with or against different HOFers. Not a difficult task if the HOFers are contemporaries, but progressively more difficult for players playing in different eras.
Here’s an example to get you started.
- Ruth played against Phil Cavarretta on May 21, 1935
- Cavarretta played against Killebrew on June 23, 1954
Let’s see how many you can find – any span over 60 years will probably take a bit of effort and/or imagination to find a link. More interesting still if (as in the Kaat example) the link is a pitcher who faced both of the principals, or if the link is another HOFer.
If you’d like a bit of help, you may find the Oracle of Baseball tool to be useful.