Results tagged ‘ Frank Chance ’
By Trevor Hayes
Not much is left of 2010 and even less remains of the baseball season. With the Rookies of the Year, Cy Youngs and Manager of the Year Awards doled out this week, two awards remain – the League MVPs. The remnants of the season that was haven’t stopped a flurry of action building toward 2011.
Classic impact: Monday saw a pair of new-bloods honored with the Rookie of the Year Awards. And for the third time in history, both players helped lead their club to the World Series. The Giants’ Buster Posey and Rangers’ Neftali Feliz were the first pair since Fernando Valenzuela and Dave Righetti in 1981 for the Yankees and Dodgers. The first pair was Gil McDougald and Hall of Famer Willie Mays in 1951 for the Yankees and Giants, respectively.
Seven is Three’s Company: Your National League Cy Young Award winner, author of two no-hitters – one a perfect game and the other the second ever thrown in the postseason – is Roy Halladay. The Doc’s second Cy Young shows he is among the game’s elite, but he remains five behind the all-time lead in that category. His team however, just became one of only three teams with at least seven Cy Young Awards. Hallday is joined in Phillies history by Hall of Famer Steve Carlton (four), Steve Bedrosian and John Denny (one each).
Interestingly enough, the other two clubs with seven are also NL teams. The Braves racked up seven with Greg Maddux (three), Tom Glavine (two), Hall of Famer Warren Spahn and John Smoltz (one each). And the Dodgers out-rank all major league teams with nine Cy Young Award winners: Hall of Famers Sandy Koufax (three) and Don Drysdale (one), along with Eric Gagne, Orel Hershiser, Mike Marshall, Don Newcombe and Fernando Valenzuela (one each).
Nine years is a heck of a start: Minnesota’s Ron Gardenhire won his first Manager of the Year Award, and Twins fans think it’s about time. Gardy had previously finished second in voting five times. His teams have won 90 games five times and he is the first manger in history to win six division titles in his first nine years. With 803 career wins, only five managers had more wins in their first nine seasons than Gardenhire. All five now call Cooperstown home: Sparky Anderson (863), Al Lopez (836), Joe McCarthy (828), Earl Weaver (812) and Frank Chance (810). Current Angels manager Mike Scioscia, also had exactly 803 wins through his first nine seasons.
Hot Stove action: While the heat really turns up around the Winter Meetings, a least one big trade has already gone down. All-Star utility man Omar Infante is taking his talents to South Beach while slugging second baseman Dan Uggla shifts to Atlanta. Losing an All-Star who can play almost any position on the field is big, but the Braves may have picked up a steal. Uggla owns the third-best batting average of anyone at Turner Field since it opened in 1997 at .354. Only Albert Pujols and Barry Bonds have hit better.
But batting average aside, Uggla’s best skill is his power. He’s the first second baseman to produce four 30-home run seasons, let alone consecutively. And among the first five years of any middle infielder’s career, Uggla’s 154 home runs are tops. Three MVP-wining Hall of Famers round out the top five, with 500-home run club member Ernie Banks second (136), Joe Gordon third (125) and Cal Ripken Jr. fifth (108). Nomar Garciaparra is fourth with 117.
King Felix’s Mariners vs. Lefty’s Phils: Announced Thursday was the American League Cy Young winner, Seattle’s Felix Hernandez. The honor continues a trend of moving away from wins in the voting. In fact, the AL wins leader has won only five of the last nine Cy Young Awards.
With the lowest win total for a Cy Young winner ever, King Felix and his team set a new precedent. Previously, Steve Carlton’s 1972 Phillies were the worst team to boast a Cy Young winner. While the Hall of Fame lefty lead the league with an incredible 27 wins, his Phillies won 59 games – a .378 win percentage. This season, run support torpedoed Hernandez, who went 13-12, while Seattle posted a winning percentage of .377.
Catching up with the Hall of Famers: Drafted in 1978 and debuting in 1981 with the Phillies, Ryne Sandberg is returning to Philadelphia. After four seasons managing in the Cubs’ farm system, the 2010 Pacific Coast League Manager of the Year was hired to manage the Phillies’ Triple-A affiliate. Starting next season, Ryno will head the Lehigh Valley IronPigs as he continues his quest to pilot a big league club.
Stan Musial made news this week as the Cardinals legend was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Barack Obama. The St. Louis faithful campaigned all season to get Stan the Man the nation’s highest civilian honor.
Also, two more Hall of Famers grace Studio 42 with Bob Costas tonight. Legendary hitters Tony Gwynn and Rod Carew will drop by to talk baseball and the art of hitting with the veteran broadcaster at 8 p.m. ET on MLB Network.
Trevor Hayes is the editorial production manager at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.
By Samantha Carr
Generally speaking, first baseman are not known for their speed. Hall of Famer Frank Chance was an exception to that rule, once stealing a league-leading 67 bases in just 125 games in 1903.
But All-American Girls Professional Baseball League player Dorothy Kamenshek didn’t just steal more bases, she shattered Chance’s number. Kamenshek, also known as “Dottie” or “Kammie,” stole 109 bases in 107 games in 1946.
Kamenshek passed away Monday at the age of 84. She was considered by many the greatest women’s baseball player ever.
“Kammie had no weakness,” said fellow AAGPBL player Lavone “Pepper” Paire Davis. “She hit left-handed line drives and was a complete ballplayer.”
In 10 years with the league (1943-1951, 1953), Kamenshek led the league in batting twice (1946 and 1947) and stands as the league’s all-time batting leader with a .282 lifetime average.
“I’m not one for statistics, really,” Kamenshek once said. “I never paid any attention to that. I didn’t consider myself an individual player, team victories were more important to me.”
She spent her whole career with the Rockford Peaches. She was selected to play in the All-Star Game in each of the seven seasons during her career that a game was held.
It wasn’t just women who were impressed by Kamenshek.
Yankees first baseman Wally Pipp called her “the fanciest-fielding first-baseman I’ve ever seen, man or woman” after seeing her play.
She was even offered a contract with the minor league baseball club in Fort Lauderdale in 1947. She turned down the offer because she thought it was a publicity stunt. Kamenshek led her team to four league championships and retired in 1953 after suffering back injuries.
The Baseball Hall of Fame has files of clippings and photos of Kamenshek in its collections, and her memory lives on in the Diamond Dreams exhibit on the second floor of the Museum.
Samantha Carr is the manager of web and digital media at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.
By Steve Light
One-Hundred years after Baseball’s Sad Lexicon (“Tinkers, to Evers, to Chance”), baseball remains a sport that lends itself to poetic musings. With this in mind, the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum celebrated National Poetry Month last week by asking our visitors to express their love of baseball in poetic form.
Visitors to the Museum were greeted with signs that asked, “What is Baseball to You?” After completing their tour through the Museum, many no doubt reliving and sharing their own baseball memories along the way, visitors could stop in the Education Gallery and record their own thoughts in special poetry journals set out for the week, or simply flip through and read what others had to say.
In all, we collected over 80 entries of poems and prose during the week, from young and old, Red Sox fans to Yankee fans. Taken in whole, our visitor entries get at the heart of what it means to be a baseball fan, and why it’s more than just a sport for many. As a Sox fan from Worcester wrote:
Baseball is History.
celebration, and disappointment,
always with the promise
of next year’s resurrection.
We thought we would share some of the collected poems here on our blog. Read them.
So, what is baseball to you?
Stephen Light is manager of museum programs at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.