Quiz: What links these five? (Solved)

What seasonal feat is shared by only these five players in MLB history? Small hints: (1) You can tell from the basic stats on their main B-R pages that they meet the two criteria. (2) Positions played are irrelevant. (3) The list will not grow this year, but a Yankee could make it in two years.

Congratulations to Insert Name Here!  These are the only five MLB players with 15 or more seasons and 100+ games in every season. The implied hints were:

(a) The lack of a catcher — They rarely have long streaks of 100+ games, due to the physical toll of the job. Only Ivan Rodriguez, Carlton Fisk and Bob Boone had 15+ years of 100+ games; all three had several years with less than 100 games, and at least two of those in mid-career. I believe Brad Ausmus is the only catcher with 14 straight years of 100+ games played (not necessarily 100 at catcher); Jason Kendall did it in 14 of his 15 years. Also, most catchers end their careers as backups; out of 666 retired players with 100+ games in their last season, just 20 were catchers.

(b) Clemente and Daubert both died after a season of 100+ games; neither had planned to retire.

Ichiro Suzuki is the active player closest to joining this list, with at least 146 games in all 13 MLB seasons.

__________

Just by chance, we have a SS, a CF, a RF, a 1B and a 2B, for the start of a pretty good lineup — especially with Ashburn on hand to keep Little Louie out of the leadoff spot. You might glean a clue to the feat from one of the positions not covered. And there’s at least one other natural lead to deducing the feat, which applies to two of the five.

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35 Comments on "Quiz: What links these five? (Solved)"

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Doug
Editor

What is the link?

Well, they were all MVPs or All-Stars.

They all played in at least one World Series.

All played at least 2000 games, including at least four seasons playing at only one position (two, Aparicio and Daubert, played every inning of an entire career at only one position).

All had at least eight seasons of 3 WAR.

Anything on the right track?

Doug
Editor

Incidentally, Scott Rolen is the only other player with 2000+ games, all played at one position (excl. PH and PR appearances).

Lawrence Azrin
Guest

Ozzie Smith – 2,511 MLB games on the field, _all_ at shortstop.

Lou Whitaker – 2,308 MLB games on the field, _all_ at second base.

Am I missing some other qualifier?

Hartvig
Guest

Lou did DH in a few games but it doesn’t appear that Ozzie ever did

Lawrence Azrin
Guest

@21/Hartvg,

I wouldn’t consider DH a ‘field’ position, but rather the equivalent of PH and PRing appearances. Bobby Doerr falls short with 1852 games, all at second base.

Joseph
Guest

A hint from ONE of the positions not covered–That makes me wonder why no players from LF, but one each from CF and RF. Also, 3rd base is missing.

The only players to never catch a foul ball past the third base foul line during a season? Okay, I know that’s not right–but I’m thinking.

Insert Name Here
Guest

Took a look at each player and the hints, and I figure I’ll take a guess…

1. They each played 15+ seasons with 100+ games played in each and every season
2. Career SB% of at least 60%

Not sure how this fits with JA’s “one other natural lead… which applies to two of the five”, but I feel this is a decent guess.

Insert Name Here
Guest

Oops! This was not intended as a reply to Joseph’s (or to anyone’s) comment, and I’m not sure why it’s showing up as such.

Steven
Guest

Hank Aaron came close.

Joseph
Guest

I bet that Aaron would have played 15 more games in his last season if he knew that John Autin would make this a quiz 37 years later. 😉

Joseph
Guest

Just to clarify–the requirement includes playing greater than 100 games in each year of the player’s career, yes? So, Cal Ripkin with greater than 100 games for 17 or 18 seasons does not count because he had several years with under 100 games.

Really interesting that it is such an uncommon feat. I would have thought it much more common.

Joseph
Guest

Jeter almost did it too, but for last season and his cup of coffee in 1995

no statistician but
Guest
JA: On a day late in the summer of 1961, I was lucky enough to meet and be part of a conversation with Richie Ashburn and Roberto Clemente (also Bob Will)—2/5 of your quiz group. I was one of a group of league players who had been invited to Wrigley Field to participate in a the filming of an episode of a TV show then running on WGN in which big leaguers, a couple from the Cubs and one from whichever team happened to be in town, gave advice and instruction on some aspect of the game. My memory is… Read more »
jajacob
Guest

Jeff Kent is the only one to play for multiple teams in the same season. He didit twice.

tunatuna
Guest

Excellent article. I would love to see a list of catchers that can match Thurman Munson by playing in at least 125 games a season for 9 straight years as he did from 1970 to 1978. He also played in at least 140 games for 7 straight years – 1972 to 1978.

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