Fun Baseball Trivia

There’s been a lot of carping about Barry Bonds and Pete Rose lately. We need some fun baseball trivia.

  1. Who is the only starting pitcher to win a Cy Young Award despite not pitching enough innings to qualify for the league ERA title?

  2. What two players won the Rookie of the Year Award and the MVP Award in the same year?

2b. That was easy… now, what two players won the Rookie of the Year Award and then won the MVP Award the year after?

  1. No player has ever won the World Series with four different teams, but many have won the World Series with three. Name three of them. For bonus points, name the last World Series winning team that had two of those players on it.

  2. What do Matt Mantei, Tim Wakefield, Huston Street, Mark Littell, and Joey Devine all have in common?

  3. The Tampa Bay Devil Rays have never had a .500 season; every other team has, but which expansion team had to wait the longest to see .500?

  4. Speaking of expansion, why do Blue Jays fans owe Bud Selig a measure of thanks for the existence of their team, and why is this also connected to the fate of Barry Bonds?

  5. Who is the only player to end a World Series by being thrown out stealing?

  6. Speaking of that sort of thing, what player ended a World Series by making the final putout (making the out as a fielder) and then the following year ended the World Series by driving in the winning run?

  7. Let’s continue with that theme; two players in major league history have ended one World Series with a game winning hit, and then ended another World Series by being the last out as a batter. One was Hall of Famer Goose Goslin. Who was the other, more recent, player to do so?

  8. Since 1901, 20 teams have been so awful they had winning percentages below .300. One of them, the 2003 Detroit Tigers, recovered with amazing speed - only three years later they won the pennant. But one sub-.300 team at least made it back to .500 in just two seasons. Which team was it?

#8 is Joe Carter. He made the final put-out at first in 1992 and hit the World Series-winning home run in 1993.

#2

Fred Lynn in 1975. Ichiro Suzuki in 2001.

Fred Lynn is one of them.

Without looking – the second Washington Senators/Texas Rangers

  1. Who is the only starting pitcher to win a Cy Young Award despite not pitching enough innings to qualify for the league ERA title?

Rick Sutcliffe, 1984

Sly one, there.

Damn. That’s what I first though of but I felt there had to be another answer.

2b. That was easy… now, what two players won the Rookie of the Year Award and then won the MVP Award the year after?

Ryan Howard, 2005-06, Cal Ripken Jr. 1982-83

  1. What do Matt Mantei, Tim Wakefield, Huston Street, Mark Littell, and Joey Devine all have in common?

They all throw the knuckleball

  1. The Tampa Bay Devil Rays have never had a .500 season; every other team has, but which expansion team had to wait the longest to see .500?

I was off on this one: The Mariners had to wait 15 seasons to reach .500

I don’t think that’s it.

I’m pretty sure that Huston Steet doesn’t throw a knuckleball.

  1. Since 1901, 20 teams have been so awful they had winning percentages below .300. One of them, the 2003 Detroit Tigers, recovered with amazing speed - only three years later they won the pennant. But one sub-.300 team at least made it back to .500 in just two seasons. Which team was it?

I knew it was the Twins or the Braves, but I had to look up the exact year: the 1935 Boston Braves.

So I don’t have to referee individual answers I’ll post separate spoiler boxes with answers.

  1. Who is the only starting pitcher to win a Cy Young Award despite not pitching enough innings to qualify for the league ERA title?

This has been correctly answered; Rick Sutcliffe did not quite quality for the 1984 NL ERA title, but after being traded from the Indians - an AL team so his innings there didn’t count towards his NL total - he went 16-1 and won the Cy Young.

  1. What two players won the Rookie of the Year Award and the MVP Award in the same year?

Fred Lynn in 1975 for the Red Sox and Ichiro Suzuki in 2001 for the Mariners.

2b. That was easy… now, what two players won the Rookie of the Year Award and then won the MVP Award the year after?

Correctly answered: Cal Ripken Jr. in 1982-1983, and Ryan Howard in 2005-2006.

  1. No player has ever won the World Series with four different teams, but many have won the World Series with three. Name three of them. For bonus points, name the last World Series winning team that had two of those players on it.

Wally Schang, Stuffy McInnis, Joe Bush, Lonnie Smith, Jack Morris, and Dave Stewart have all done this, and I might be missing others. Morris and Stewart both played for the 1993 World Champion Blue Jays.

  1. What do Matt Mantei, Tim Wakefield, Huston Street, Mark Littell, and Joey Devine all have in common?

[spoiler]All five pitchers have surrendered walk-off home runs that ended a playoff series:

Matt Mantei to Todd Pratt of the Mets (1999 NLDS)
Tim Wakefield to Aaron Boone of the Yankees (2003 ALCS)
Huston Street to Magglio Ordonez of the Tigers (2006 ALCS)
Mark Littell to Chris Chambliss of the Yankees (1976 ALCS)
Joey Devine to Chris Burke of the Astros (2005 NLDS)

I didn’t mention Mitch Williams, Ralph Branca, or Ralph Terry. Too easy!
[/spoiler]

  1. The Tampa Bay Devil Rays have never had a .500 season; every other team has, but which expansion team had to wait the longest to see .500?

Answered correctly: the Mariners hit .500 in their 15th season.

  1. Speaking of expansion, why do Blue Jays fans owe Bud Selig a measure of thanks for the existence of their team, and why is this also connected to the fate of Barry Bonds?

Bud Selig moved the bankrupt Seattle Pilots to Milwaukee in 1970. Seattle began a lawsuit against the American League, so to placate them they gave them the MAriners in 1977. To balance that out they also gave Toronto the Blue Jays. This affects Bonds because the reason they chose Toronto was because Toronto was probably going to sue the National League… the Giants had been sold to a Toronto group and were preparing to move there, and the city had renovated the stadium to accomodate them, but at the last minute an SF group bought the team under a local ownership clause and cancelled the move. Had that not happened, there would likely be no SF Giants, and Bonds’s career path likely changes entirely.

  1. Who is the only player to end a World Series by being thrown out stealing?

Babe Ruth, in 1926.

  1. Speaking of that sort of thing, what player ended a World Series by making the final putout (making the out as a fielder) and then the following year ended the World Series by driving in the winning run?

Answered correctly; Joe Carter put out Otis Nixon to end the 1992 World Series and then hit the home run that ended the 1993 World Series.

  1. Let’s continue with that theme; two players in major league history have ended one World Series with a game winning hit, and then ended another World Series by being the last out as a batter. One was Hall of Famer Goose Goslin. Who was the other, more recent, player to do so?

Edgar Renteria hit a bases loaded single to win the 1997 World Series for the Marlins, and grounded out to the pitcher to end the 2004 World Series.

  1. Since 1901, 20 teams have been so awful they had winning percentages below .300. One of them, the 2003 Detroit Tigers, recovered with amazing speed - only three years later they won the pennant. But one sub-.300 team at least made it back to .500 in just two seasons. Which team was it?

Answered correctly: the 1935 Boston Braves. They went over .500 in 1937.

These two have always been my favorite baseball trivia questions:

How many intentional walks did Roger Maris receive in 1961, the year he hit 61 homeruns?

0. It helps when Mickey Mantle is batting behind you

What was the winning percentage of the 1927 Yankees, who had “murderer’s row”, which included Babe Ruth and his 60 homeruns?

.714, which is the same number as the Babe’s lifetime HR total

My two favorites that are slightly off the beaten path:

5 Cy Young Award winners are also convicted felons:

Denny McClain, Vida Blue, Lamarr Hoyt, Ferguson Jenkins & Dwight Gooden

4 Academy Award nominees also played catchers in movies (different movies; not the movies for which they were nominated):

Robert DeNiro (nom six times, catcher in “Bang the Drum Slowly”);
Kevin Costner (nom for “Dances with Wolves,” catcher in “Bull Durham”);
Geena Davis (nom for “Thelma & Louise,” & “Accidental Tourist” catcher in “A League of Their Own”);
James Earl Jones (nom for “Great White Hope,” played catcher in "Bingo Long Travelling All-Stars.

None of them have ever been in my kitchen. :smiley:

Speaking of the Seattle Pilots & Mariners, who is the only player to have played for both of them?

Diego Segui

Actually, there are five.

John C. Reilly (nom for Chicago, played a catcher in For Love of the Game)

Here’s one:

Two pitchers in baseball history have surrendered a pair of grand slams in the same inning. One did it to the same player both times.

Who are the pitchers, and who was the player who notched eight RBIs in an inning?

Fernando Tatis.

Rusty Torres didn’t accomplish all that much in his 9 year major league baseball career, but something happened to him THREE times that never happens to most major leaguers at all.

What was it? Hint: It had absolutely nothing to do with him personally- he just happened to be playing each time it happened!