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About Jon
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1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
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5) discussing politics
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How Far Back Do Your Guys Go?
2006-04-18 12:01
by Jon Weisman

Something I find fascinating is that if my grandfather had a schoolteacher who was in his 60s, that he would have been taught by someone born well before the Civil War. As simple as that, two degrees of separation and not even a stretch, and I'm connected to 1850.

Someday, if I'm lucky, my grandchild will be impressed that I can connect myself to the late 19th century (with some amount of stretching). In the meantime, here's a baseball version of the game. Read the question carefully: Of all the baseball players you have seen in person, what's the earliest year that one of them played in the majors?

For me, I'm not sure that I've exhausted all the possibilities for visiting players. My first guesses were Pete Rose and Willie Stargell. (I don't think I ever saw Willie Mays or Hank Aaron in person as opposed to on TV, for example.) So far, I can't seem to top Stargell and Manny Mota, who made their major league debuts in 1962, five years before I was born.

* * *

I'm scheduled to make a radio apperance on The Big Show with Steve Mason and John Ireland (AM 710) at approximately 3:20 p.m.

Comments (166)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2006-04-18 12:25:20
1.   Monterey Chris
Manny Mota is probably mine also. It would be fascinating to hear Vin's answer to that question.
2006-04-18 12:27:27
2.   Bob Timmermann
Hoyt Wilhelm.

He broke in with the Giants in 1952.

2006-04-18 12:30:42
3.   Bob Timmermann
However, I don't think I saw Wilhelm in person.

I can say with 100% certainty I saw Al Kaline play and he broke in with the Tigers in 1953.

2006-04-18 12:32:28
4.   Penarol1916
I went to a couple of Royals games in 1985 and distinctly remember Hal McRae as the old timer that everyone said used to be great. I always seemed to watch them play the White Sox and Rangers and Carlton Fisk is the only old guy I remember from those, so I'll go with McRae, who debuted in 1968, 9 years before I was born.
2006-04-18 12:34:02
5.   underdog
Manny Mota for me too. Oh, and Don Sutton. Saw him play when I was but a very wee lad...

Oh, and Jeff Fasero. ;-)

2006-04-18 12:34:50
6.   Linkmeister
I saw at least a couple of games at the Coliseum in 1960/1961, and in checking I see that both Hodges and Snider played in over 100 games for the Dodgers each year, so it's likely I saw one or the other or both of them. Hodges made his debut in 1943 and Snider in 1947.

I saw a few games at Griffith Stadium in DC, but I couldn't tell you which team played the Senators back then.

2006-04-18 12:37:04
7.   deburns
I saw Joe Dimaggio in 1949 at Yankee Stadium, and I think he broke in in 1936.
2006-04-18 12:40:31
8.   Bob Timmermann

1936 was indeed DiMaggio's first year. There will be a Random Game Callback involving the 1936 Yankees soon.

2006-04-18 12:41:06
9.   bhsportsguy
Within 2 months I saw Frank Robinson (1956), six years before I was born and Wilt, Elgin and Jerry play for the Lakers in September/October 1972.

My grandfather had a picture of Babe and Lou (if I have to give last names, you are on the wrong website) that he got during a barnstorming tour in 1930's.

Jon, I believe you are doing the spanning So Cal bit on 710, you will have about 10 seconds to answer 1 or 2 questions, if they have not prepped you, I could probably guess the questions,

Jon Weisman from and Dodgerthoughts, Jon, Jeff Kent got hit on the head on Sunday, when will he back in the lineup? Question 2, the team is off to a slow start, do you think they will have to make a move soon so they don't fall too far behind?

If I don't get at least one out of two right I will ban myself for the rest of today.

2006-04-18 12:42:43
10.   Bob Timmermann
If you have to ban yourself, you can watch "Gilmore Girls" in peace tonight.
2006-04-18 12:44:31
11.   Mick
I was lucky enough - and old enough - to go to a couple of Dodger games at the Coliseum in 1958 when they first moved out. At seven years old, I didn't know who all the players were, but I did know who Duke Snider was and cheered for him incessantly. I do remember seeing Warren Spahn at the Coliseum. . .
2006-04-18 12:44:32
12.   bhsportsguy
BTW I used Retrosheet for the first time to verify that I remembered correctly going to a Labor Day doubleheader in 1972 against the Reds and Frank Robinson, who played for the Dodgers that year, hit a home run in the second game.

If my parents took me any games before that one, I have no memory of it at all.

2006-04-18 12:46:08
13.   bhsportsguy
10 - Well I might channel surf to see if Derek Lowe can keep Lee and Ramirez in the ballpark tonight too.
2006-04-18 12:47:23
14.   Linkmeister
I should add that I was born in 1950, so both Hodges and Snider's debuts predate my birth.
2006-04-18 12:48:30
15.   regfairfield
Without looking at visiting players, I go back to 1976, eight years before I was born. with Alfredo Griffin.
2006-04-18 12:48:30
16.   Bob Timmermann
Kaline's debut predates me by 12 years and change.
2006-04-18 12:50:33
17.   Sam DC
My wife saw Hank Aaron with her dad at County Stadium in Milwaukee.
2006-04-18 12:50:42
18.   DXMachina
My first game was Mets-Cardinals at the Polo Grounds in 1962. Stan Musial was the player who went farthest back (1941), and Gil Hodges was in the game, too. Plus, Casey Stengel was managing the Mets, aand he started managing in 1934, not to mention that he started playing in 1912.
2006-04-18 12:55:23
19.   Bob Timmermann
If we were going to cover managers, a lot of us would go back to 1936, the year of Walter Alston's lone at bat in the big leagues with the Cardinals.
2006-04-18 12:56:50
20.   Jeromy
I saw Willie Horton play at the Kingdome for the Mariners in 78 or 79. He began playing with the Tigers in 1963.

I saw a few Portland Beavers AAA games in 1980. A team that featured Tony Pena, Rick Rhoden, Vance Law, and Mickey Mahler was their best pitcher. They played an exhibition game that year against the Pirates and Willie Stargell played, so I suppose if you allow exhibition games, technically Stargill (1962) would be as far back as I go.

2006-04-18 12:59:30
21.   bhsportsguy
19 - Bob, I don't recall seeing the Cubs play in late 60's or when Leo Durocher managed the Astros in 72-73 but if you did, you could go back to 1925, when he first broke into the Majors.
2006-04-18 13:04:23
22.   GoBears
I saw Aaron at County Stadium in 1975. Doubleheader against KC.

My first game was in 1973, in Philly, but no one on that team was older than Aaron, and I don't remember who they played.

2006-04-18 13:05:17
23.   Vishal
this is just a guess, because i was young.. but maybe jerry reuss. he broke into the majors in 1969.
2006-04-18 13:07:51
24.   bhsportsguy
19 - Final manager comment, I quick check of managers who played and that its possible people could have seen those teams play, Yogi Berra (1946), Alvin Dark (1946)and Tommy Lasorda (1954).
2006-04-18 13:10:10
25.   Jon Weisman
No one saw Connie Mack?
2006-04-18 13:13:30
26.   be2ween
First time post-er (thanks for the cool site, CH): Speaking of which, I got Joltin' Joe's autograph in a San Francisco hotel barber shop! I was a cab-driving college student and only learned later that he was a tough autograph.
I also read quote once where DiMaggio's friend said that if he ever came back in another life, he prayed to not come back as Joe's barber or driver.
I saw Kaline at the Big A as a kid, and Mota at the Ravine.
Go Blue!
Go Tigers!
2006-04-18 13:13:54
27.   rbs10025
Ty Cline?

First game I ever saw was Astros at Reds, Aug 10, 1971, while visiting my uncle in Ohio.

Retrosheet's box score for the game reveals that the player in that game who had been in the major's longest was Reds CF Ty Cline, who entered the game in the 8th inning.

Cline's first year in the majors was 1960, with the Indians. And then he bounces around until 1971, his final season.

Some famous players were in that game who entered the majors the year I was born, 1963 -- Jesus Alou, Joe Morgan (then still an Astro), Jimmy Wynn, and Pete Rose.

2006-04-18 13:16:47
28.   kegtron
I have a horrible memory but Julio Franco is gonna be tough for me to beat.
2006-04-18 13:18:12
29.   Bob Timmermann
Connie Mack rarely ventured out on to the field in his later years. By 1950 he spent most of his time sleeping during games.

As for Durocher's Astros, I'm pretty sure I missed the Astros at the time. I saw them a ton during the Bill Virdon era.

2006-04-18 13:20:22
30.   thinkblue0
hey Jon,

my grandfather (dad's dad) was born in 1883.

And I'm only 24. Go figure.

2006-04-18 13:21:39
31.   Fallout
I was a big Tiger fan so I've seen Al Kaline a number of times. He is my all time favorite player. I once saw Smoky Burgess pinch hit.
2006-04-18 13:23:01
32.   King of the Hobos
I saw Nolan Ryan's final game against the Angels (see below). I was 5 then. He debuted with the Mets in 1966, 22 years before I was born. Anyone beat that?

2006-04-18 13:23:13
33.   Blu2
Ask Ireland if he and his dad still hunt cats?
2006-04-18 13:23:43
34.   Jon Weisman
30 - Cool. Perhaps your grandfather's teacher could have attended Martin Van Buren's inaugural.
2006-04-18 13:24:20
35.   gibsonhobbs88
I remember seeing at Chavez Ravine in 1971 or 72 against the Braves and Hank Aaron. Hank Aaron started his career in 1954 six hears prior to my birth. That is the farthest back I can go. I also saw Ernie Banks play but I think he started about the same time as Aaron. By the way, Bonds will never be worthy of carrying Aaron's jockstrap, much less breaking his record!!!
2006-04-18 13:25:58
36.   bhsportsguy
22 - I love Retrosheet, I looked it up and saw that doubleheader was on June 1, 1975 and in fact there were 2 players who made their debut in 1954 and both were Designated Hitters that day and those two players the second largest total number of combined home runs by two players ever, 1304, in baseball history. Those two players were Aaron and Harmon Killebrew. Two years earlier, the last time Aaron went against Mays is the largest combined total, 1354 home runs of all time. I am only counting home runs accumulated at the time the game was played.
2006-04-18 13:26:19
37.   Bob Timmermann
Ernie Banks started in September of 1953, so he antedates Aaron.
2006-04-18 13:26:25
38.   thinkblue0 grandfather came over here from Sweden in 1902. It's pretty bizarre...they even changed his last name at Ellis Island so I guess technically I'm walking around the wrong last name.

As for this baseball game, I believe my first games were in 1983 but I don't really remember any of them till '85. I have weird memories of Dodger games...for example, I still remember being at Astacio's major league debut (I had to have been like ten). As far as the oldest player I've seen, I'll have to do some serious research.

2006-04-18 13:27:18
39.   thinkblue0

Bob has an uncanny ability to always win these little "games". You've seen a lot of good stuff my friend.

2006-04-18 13:29:00
40.   Vishal
[30] how old is your dad? i'm 24 and my dad is going to turn 78 in about a week, but you might just have me beat. my grandfather was born in 1905.
2006-04-18 13:29:06
41.   oldbear
I would argue that a person that lived from 1840-1930 saw the most social, economic, and technological change of anyone in the last 2,000 years.

Are there any greater advances from electricity, flight, automobiles, to social changes such as slavery?

2006-04-18 13:29:19
42.   Bob Timmermann
Actually my brother had just asked me when Banks had made his debut because he had seen him play. But like me, his answer would be Kaline as we were at the same game (4/30/1971)
2006-04-18 13:30:12
43.   GoBears
30. Holy moly! So you were born in 1981 or 82, almost 100 years after your grandfather?! Impressive.
2006-04-18 13:30:41
44.   thinkblue0

he is 65. But his dad was something like 55 or 60 when he was born. I don't know the exact dates, but that's why everything is so spread out for me.

On a side note, my 65 year old dad is a freak of nature. He's in better shape than anyone I know, runs 5 miles a day, and looks like he's about 45. The lesson: everyone needs to get off their butts if they want to live a long healthy life.

2006-04-18 13:31:15
45.   DXMachina
Do Old Timers games count? I went to one at Yankee Stadium in 1977. Charlie Keller and Tommy Henrich were both there, and one or the other of them spent a precarious inning in right. DiMaggio was there, too, but I don't think he actually played. In the real game that followed the Angels beat the Yanks in 12. Nolan Ryan started for the Angels.
2006-04-18 13:32:09
46.   Vishal
i guess going back to the subject of this post, my dad's great-grandmother was in her 90s when he was a little kid, so she must've been born around the 1840s-1850s.
2006-04-18 13:32:15
47.   thinkblue0

yeah I was born about 98 years after my grandfather. He died in..I want to say 1978 which would put him at about 95 or 96. Sadly, I wasn't born until '81 and never had the chance to meet him.

2006-04-18 13:38:34
48.   kegtron
Dave Parker (debut in 1973) might be the earliest for me. I'm not 100% sure about Larry Bowa (1970) and Craig Nettles (1967).

I was hoping it would be Jesse Orosco.

2006-04-18 13:39:49
49.   Marty
My first game was Dodgers-Cardinals in 1964. Taking that game alone, it looks like it would be Jim Gilliam, starting in 1953. Curt Simmons started a year earlier, but did not play in the game I saw.
2006-04-18 13:42:40
50.   Bob Timmermann
I'm surprised Marty and I had the same year as our answer, but Al Kaline broke in when he was 18.
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2006-04-18 13:45:22
51.   Steve
I know I saw Joe Niekro pitch, which sends me back to 1967 at least.
2006-04-18 13:45:24
52.   King of the Hobos
We can chat with Jason Repko on in 15 minutes
2006-04-18 13:45:50
53.   Marty
I thought it was going to be Eddie Mathews (1952). I saw the Braves in 1965 and even though Mathews played 156 games, he wasn't in the one I saw.
2006-04-18 13:48:07
54.   bhsportsguy
Jon - Did you see Boog Powell when he played for the Dodgers in 1977? He started in 1961. Also, Tim McCarver was one of those "4 Decade" players, he last played in 1980 and he started in 1959. McCarver did play in about half the games for the Phillies in the late 70's, I think he was among other things, Steve Carlton's personal catcher.
2006-04-18 13:50:14
55.   Ken Arneson
I remember watching Al Kaline on TV, but I'm not sure if saw him in person or not. I'm guessing not.

The first one I'm sure of is Hank Aaron, as well: Hank debuted on April 13, 1954.

Second place is likely Harmon Killebrew, who debuted on June 23, 1954, but I'm not 100% sure about that, either.

2006-04-18 13:50:29
56.   Marty
I have to change my answer. Since I saw Mays a couple times, he must be the oldest, starting in 1951.
2006-04-18 13:50:52
57.   DougS
This is kinda scary, but I can't even remember the first baseball game I went to. But without researching the matter thoroughly, I'd have to say Manny Mota also. Like Vin, Manny is eternal; one cannot conceive of the Dodgers before him, nor after him.
2006-04-18 13:54:07
58.   trainwreck
I have seeb Julio Franco.
2006-04-18 13:54:39
59.   Bob Timmermann
I know I didn't see Mays play because I never saw the Giants at Dodger Stadium until the late 1970s or early 1980s. And I know I missed Mays with the Mets too.
2006-04-18 13:55:11
60.   Marty
According to Rob McMillin, "Jeff Kent is scheduled to see an ophthalmologist due to blurred vision."

That does not sound good.

2006-04-18 13:57:02
61.   thinkblue0

ugh. I thought he'd be back tonight.

2006-04-18 13:57:58
62.   Sam DC
Hey LAT, Stan Kasten has formally joined the Lerner group's bid for the Nationals. Supposedly, he will bring other junior partners that may help solve the Lerners diversity problem.

All -- what do I need to know about Stan Kasten beyond "professional baseball guy"; "built the Braves dynasty"; "built Turner Field"; "hired John Scheurholz"?

2006-04-18 13:59:56
63.   thinkblue0

I'm really starting to wonder when this is all going to stop. We've been one continuous injury for an entire calendar year now...

2006-04-18 13:59:57
64.   Bob Timmermann
Vin Scully was born in 1927. When he was a kid he lived near the Polo Grounds and idolized Mel Ott. Ott debuted in 1926, one year before Vin was born.

But let's say he went to a game for the first time in 1933. He would have been six. He potentially could have seen Dolf Luque pitch. He started in 1914. He might have also seen Dazzy Vance (who was on St. Louis in 1933). He started in 1915.
There is a remote chance he could have seen Jack Quinn pitch in a game for the Reds that year. Quinn broke in in 1909.

2006-04-18 14:07:38
65.   Jon Weisman
54 - Thanks! I saw both Boog and McCarver.

64 - Grandma Sue definitely went to games in New York as early as the 1920s.

2006-04-18 14:08:26
66.   Marty
My mother was born in 1921. Unfortunately, since she grew up out here, her first major league game was one of the 4 1963 world series games (the Drysdale one). So her oldest player, Yogi Berra 1946, is not much older than mine.
2006-04-18 14:08:29
67.   Rob M
My dad took me to Dodger Stadium to see Hammerin' Hank's last game in L.A., or so he has told me for years. I was only 6 at the time and don't remember that well. According to retrosheet, that game was September 25, 1974. I was 6. Dusty Baker and Darrell Evans hit home runs to lead the Braves to victory.
2006-04-18 14:10:42
68.   Marty
65 Was she a Dodgers, Giants or Yankees fan?
2006-04-18 14:12:04
69.   Jon Weisman
68 - I want to say Giants because of her love of ______ (Who's been paying attention?)
2006-04-18 14:13:12
70.   Fallout
When the Big A first opened their security wasn't very good. A number of times my best friend and I would sneek down to the player's dressing rooms. I remember running into Willie Horton on our first trip down under the stadium. We stood there and froze...didn't know what to say. He told us to watch out for the "police" in here...don't get caught. We thanked him and sneaked around for only a few minutes more and left.
2006-04-18 14:13:48
71.   Bob Timmermann

I will disqualify myself from this.

2006-04-18 14:13:49
72.   Marty
Mel Ott?
2006-04-18 14:15:25
73.   Daniel Zappala
I got an autograph on a ball from Tommy John, debut on September 6, 1963. I may have seen him pitch, but I'm not sure. This was in the days when the players came out to OC and appeared at a local car dealership.

I'll have to go home and check, but I believe Ron Cey and Dusty Baker are on the same ball.

2006-04-18 14:18:08
74.   scareduck
My first game at an actual ballpark was an Angels game, though I don't recall the date.

My first Dodgers game was probably in the late 90's, and again, I don't recall who played.

I would guess therefore that the farthest back I have seen would be Brian Downing.

2006-04-18 14:19:11
75.   Vishal
[69] carl hubbell! i remember thinking of the space telescope when you mentioned him. that was edwin hubble, though.
2006-04-18 14:20:58
76.   Marty
Oh, that's right. I made a dumb Big Lebowski joke about that.
2006-04-18 14:21:53
77.   Daniel Zappala
Also fairly certain I saw Ron Fairly, debuted September 9, 1958. Played for the Angels in his last season in 1978.
2006-04-18 14:22:54
78.   Vishal
[76] i just looked back and checked; that joke was rad! but then, the big lebowski is my favorite movie.
2006-04-18 14:23:49
79.   Fallout
74 scareduck
I would guess therefore that the farthest back I have seen would be Brian Downing.

I use to pitch to Brian Downing in American Legion.

2006-04-18 14:25:53
80.   Suffering Bruin
1974 I was at Dodger Stadium to witness the Hammer's first SH in 13 years.
2006-04-18 14:28:52
81.   Bob Timmermann
I remember that. I heard Steve issue a high-pitched scream.
2006-04-18 14:30:53
82.   Jacob L
The first two games I went to were in 1977. I looked both up on retrosheet, and I think its pretty safe to say that the Manny Mota is the winner. He played in both games, which runs contrary to my memory, and of course he started his career in 1962.

Second place is a tie between Jose Cardenal who appeared for the Cubs in my first game (8/29/77), and Vic Davalillo who played for the Dodgers. Both players debuted in 1963.

I don't think I ever saw the Red Sox in my youth, so that would rule out Yaz, though I'm pretty sure he's the longest running player I remember seeing on TV. I think the back of his baseball card had a second page. The only other doubt in my mind is whether I ever saw Jim Kaat (rookie class of 59).

In looking into this, I learned some things I didn't know about the second game I ever attended - the final game of the 1977 season. This game was famous for Baker homering and thus establishing the 4 man 30 homer club. For me it was memorable for seeing my favorite player (Yeager) knocked unconscious. First, I learned that I saw JR Richard pitch. Second, I learned that I saw the afforementioned Mota hit a pinch homer. I only remembered seeing him once, after he broke the pinch hit record. On that occassion, he struck out on three pitches.

2006-04-18 14:34:17
83.   dagwich
Went to my first game in 1959, Dodgers vs Reds. Joe Nuxall (sp?) was on the Reds then, although I don't know if he actually pitched in that game (hey, I was 5 -- all I remember is how green that grass was). Without looking it up I believe he started pitching for the Reds when he was 16 in 1944, so he would have been around 29.

Man, the Coliseum was a bad place for baseball.

2006-04-18 14:37:03
84.   dagwich
83 Er, 16+15=31, not 29. Time to go home.
2006-04-18 14:37:49
85.   Dave
Where's Tommy Naccarato when I need him? I'm really old compared to most of you, my dad was born in 1899, but I attended my first MLB game in 1956. The White Sox played the Indians. The oldest player I remember was Minnie Minoso, because he was my favorite, probably because I liked the sound of his name. I was ten. Minnie had a cup of coffee in 1949 and came up for good in 1951.

The oldest player I've met, I never saw play. His name was Carl Hubbell and I met him at a fundraiser I was working in Scottsdale, Arizona. I think he played in the 20s and/or 30s and was actually a fair player, but for some no account team that may not really even qualify as Major League.

2006-04-18 14:39:22
86.   Marty
I was going to a lot of games at Dodger Stadium in the years when JR Richards was the nastiest pitcher in baseball. But I can't for the life of me remember if I ever saw him pitch when Houston was in town.
2006-04-18 14:41:02
87.   godvls
My dad tells me that he took me to see Stan Musial play at Dodger Stadium in 1963 when I was three years old.

I saw Mantle vs. the Angels at the Big A in his final season (1968). Saw Mays at Dodger Stadium several times between 1967-1972.

2006-04-18 14:45:10
88.   Todd
30 So did he scout Ty Cobb? No? What was 5 cent cinema like. That's incredible as a historian and someone endlessly interested in these sorts of questions.

I'd have to say Rusty Staub whose debut was '63, 12 years before I was born (or Charlie Hustle, also '63).

2006-04-18 14:45:29
89.   Jacob L
Marty, you just missed another opening for your Carl Hubbell joke.
2006-04-18 14:46:10
90.   sanchez101
I was at a Dodger game when they had Ricky Henderson, I dont think he played, but he was in the dugout. When did he start?

Ive meet Jessie Orosco, does that count?

2006-04-18 14:46:33
91.   oldbear
My dad saw Satchel Paige's last game.
2006-04-18 14:48:22
92.   Bob Timmermann
Rickey Henderson's first game was 6/24/1979.
2006-04-18 14:51:30
93.   oldbear
And if were talking brushes with baseball players, my 7th/8th grade PE teacher/basketball coach had a World Series ring. He was a middle reliever for the Cardinals when they won in I believe 1982. He blew out his arm and had to get a real job right after that year. But it was still pretty cool to see his WS ring.
2006-04-18 14:53:55
94.   dan reines
Jon, this post reminds me of Keith Olbermann's "Ninth Man" observation from a few years back -- it's all over the web, but I found it online here: I think it's short enough to paste it in, so I'll do that:

"He is out there somewhere in spring training. He's probably 20 or 21, maybe 22. And he will retire in the year 2016. He will be the grand old man of baseball. And they will say, 'He's so old that the year he broke in, Eddie Murray was still playing.' And he will become the ninth man. Eddie Murray's the eighth man. When he broke in, Brooks Robinson was still playing. And when Robinson broke in, Bob Feller was still playing. And when Feller broke in, Rogers Hornsby was still playing. And when Hornsby broke in, Honus Wagner was still playing. And when Wagner broke in, Cap Anson was still playing. And when Anson broke in, Dickey Pearce was still playing. And when Pearce broke in, Doc Adams was still playing. Adams played for the Knickerbocker club inthe first organized game of baseball in 1846, number one of the eight men whose careers cover the 152 seasons since. And somewhere out there is the ninth man.–Keith Olbermann, 1997"

(I hope that wasn't too much quote to reasonably paste.)

As for me, I know I saw the Cubs vs. the Pirates at Wrigley in about 1976, which would mean that my old-timer is probably Willie Stargell. First old guys I really remember, though, were Reggie Jackson and Rod Carew, who was my favorite player as a kid. Both were 1967, four years before I made my debut.

2006-04-18 14:58:46
95.   Jon Weisman
94 - No, that was great, thanks.
2006-04-18 15:01:16
96.   Jacob L
If anyone cares, please add to my post in 82 that I also saw Stargell on 8/28/79. He hit a towering home run off of Charlie Hough that actually made me cry. I was 8 at the time, though I still haven't learned how to take baseball less personally.

So anyway, Stargell is tied with Mota for me.

2006-04-18 15:01:35
97.   Bob Timmermann
I think Andruw Jones will be the Ninth Man.
2006-04-18 15:02:08
98.   Johnson
94 If A-Rod plays to age 41, he will almost certainly be the "Ninth Man". If not, who else is a good candidate?
2006-04-18 15:02:26
99.   Bob Timmermann
Manny Mota started in April of 1962. Stargell came up in September of that year.
2006-04-18 15:02:32
100.   das411
Wow, the oldest player I have ever seen in person was actually really easy to remember off the top of my head: The Rickey, when he was with the Pads in 2001. He predates me by 5 years, 1979 to 1984.

This is only possible because according to Retrosheet, Larry Anderson did not pitch in whichever Phils/Astros game I have very hazy memories of from September '93...

I think Hobos may win this by a fair margin, although I have met Jim Palmer (at a signing) who debuted 19 years before I was born. I suspect the average age of posters on this thread looks a lot like the Giants outfield today!

Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2006-04-18 15:03:13
101.   Bob Timmermann

At least we didn't pick the same person.

2006-04-18 15:04:59
102.   Johnson
97 Jones is a good candidate. Vlad Guerrero is a year older, but broke in at the same time. If they both retire the same year, at this point I think Vlad would get the nod over Jones.
2006-04-18 15:05:31
103.   Johnson
101 Tell me about it. Phew!
2006-04-18 15:06:46
104.   dan reines
I wouldn't be surprised if the ninth man is some left-handed reliever we wouldn't even think about. Someone like Orosco, who will just hang around until everyone else drops...
2006-04-18 15:07:42
105.   Sam DC
Miguel Cabrera?
2006-04-18 15:08:22
106.   Sam DC
Jason Repko's favorite food is Lucky Charms. Or Life.
2006-04-18 15:08:35
107.   Elgin Blue
I can go back to 1950 something. I saw a mayor's trophy game in NY at Yankee Stadium. Yankees vs. Dodgers. Pee Wee, Roy C., Duke, Jackie Robinson, etc.
I was 9 or 11. So it was possibly 1953, or 1955. Yankees played the Giants on even years.
Jackie hit a HR.

I guess I'm just older than you guys.


2006-04-18 15:12:27
108.   das411
104 - Awww, Bruce Chen debuted in 1998, curses! Bob, are there any players who started in 1977 when Brooks retired and lasted longer than Eddie Murray? I think this -just- misses Orosco and Julio...
2006-04-18 15:15:11
109.   Vishal
[108] i am a bruce chen fan. i don't really know why, i just am.
2006-04-18 15:15:56
110.   Bob Timmermann
The only young lefty reliever from 1997 whom I think has a chance of lasting long enough to be the Ninth Man would be Steve Kline, but he was 24 then.

Of the lefties who pitched in the NL in 1997, the following are still active:
Rheal Cormier
Joey Eischen
Alan Embree
Shawn Estes
Tom Glavine
Mike Hampton
Felix Heredia (nominally)
Steve Kline
Tom Martin
Kent Mercker
Terry Mulholland
Mike Remlinger
Billy Wagner

From the AL:
Scott Eyre
Jeff Fassero
Chris Hammond
Randy Johnson
Ron Mahay
Jamie Moyer
Mike Myers
Andy Pettitte
Arthur Rhodes
Kenny Rogers
Mike Stanton
Ron Villone
David Wells

I may have missed a few here and there.

2006-04-18 15:20:35
111.   Jacob L
O.K., I'll say it - I think Terry Mulholland's got 10 years left in the tank.
2006-04-18 15:23:15
112.   Steve
This isn't Mason and Ireland.
2006-04-18 15:23:46
113.   underdog
Does anyone know if you can listen to 710AM online? The web page doesn't seem to give any indication ( which makes me think, nope. But if you know differently, let me know... In any event, good luck Jon!
2006-04-18 15:28:07
114.   Johnson
Not to be outdone by Bob (yeah, right!) I went through and made my own subjective list of all players who 1) were playing in the majors at age 22 or younger in 1997 and who 2) I think have a remote shot at playing until 2016. Note that in some cases this chance is quite remote.

'97 debuts:
Millwood, Kotsay, Konerko, Vidro, Jose Guillen, Derrek Lee, Morris, Sexson, Torii Hunter, David Ortiz, Tejada, Carpenter, Escobar.

'96 debuts:
Andruw Jones, Felix Heredia (the obligatory LHRP), Vlad Guerrero, Renteria, Rolen, Kendall.

'95 debuts:

'94 debuts:

All of these guys would be 41 or younger going into 2016, so far as I can tell. I figure the Ninth Man will be one of these guys, and Konerko, Lee, Sexson and Ortiz have some built-in advantages of being 1B/DHs. Can you imagine the response here in ten years (knock wood) if it turns out to be Konerko?

2006-04-18 15:29:00
115.   Steve
The start has been "ok?" Good lord.
2006-04-18 15:30:31
116.   dan reines
nice work, jon. you kicked helene elliott's butt...
2006-04-18 15:30:51
117.   dan reines
oh, there she is...
2006-04-18 15:31:29
118.   Sam DC
The Bowden story is getting odd and ugly/sad; his girlfriend was arrested that night as well and apparently spent the night in jail. She has a May 8 arraignment on charges of resisting arrest and battery (not clear if that is battery of Bowden).

2006-04-18 15:34:43
119.   Steve
Bowden had a California driver's license when he was stopped and listed a Los Angeles home address, according to the police report.

Frank McCourt can thank me later.

2006-04-18 15:38:11
120.   Jon Weisman
116 - Thanks ... I feel like I regressed.

You know, when they ask you whether your blog helps you get chicks, there are two ways to go with your answer.

I could not tell a lie.

2006-04-18 15:39:04
121.   bhsportsguy
So am I banned, I missed Jon spanning So Cal, darn work.
2006-04-18 15:40:01
122.   ToyCannon
Saw Camilo Pascual in 68 with the Senators, he broke in 1954 the same year as Aaron. Saw Ted Williams manage the Senators in 69 and he first surfaced in 1939. I'm sure we all have retrosheet to thank to help our memories or great baseball collections. I still have my 68 Pascual card.
2006-04-18 15:40:21
123.   Jon Weisman
According to today's press notes, Kent is expected to start tonight.
2006-04-18 15:40:37
124.   Bob Timmermann
Will a transcipt be available later? Do I need to send $5 to the same place where they sell "Nightline" transcripts?
2006-04-18 15:41:22
125.   Bob Timmermann
Don't tell me if Lane and Zack's wedding has any problems!
2006-04-18 15:44:08
126.   Langhorne
I have a Spalding glove. Albert Spalding broke in with the Boston Red Stockings in 1871, 91 years before I was born.

But seriously folks, as a birthday present in 1972 my Dad drove the four plus hours from Albany to NYC to see the Mets play the Braves. The first thing my Dad did was to point out Mays to me. His implication was that those other guys are ballplayers but THAT'S Willie Mays. But I think my Dad was more excited to see Henry Aaron. I don't think Mays played in that game but I did get to see Hank hit one out. My Dad started cheering so I did too. That got some angry stares from the Mets fans.

2006-04-18 15:44:21
127.   Uncle Miltie
I don't like Bowden or his leather pants, but it sounds like he was running away from an abusive spouse.

Nice job Jon, though I'm disappointed that you didn't mention Ramon Martinez's nickname (just kidding).

2006-04-18 15:46:45
128.   bigcpa
Can someone give me the hilites of the 710 bit? I snoozed and I losed.
2006-04-18 15:47:08
129.   Fallout
Watching the Cal Angels I also saw Jim Piersall and Joe Adcock. Adcock hit maybe the longest HR I've ever seen. It landed to the right side (toward center) of the Big A sign behind the left field wall. I'm not sure but I heard the the sign was 90 ft behind the wall.
2006-04-18 15:47:54
130.   scareduck
113 - no ESPN station does streaming, alas.
2006-04-18 15:49:18
131.   scareduck
120 - so you therefore answered in the negative, because this blog having failed to attract more than one chick, correct?
2006-04-18 15:51:22
132.   Vishal
[124] or maybe from burrelle's transcripts. i remember watching at least one show which did their transcripts through there.
2006-04-18 15:51:38
133.   Jon Weisman
128 - No real highlights. I'm faithful to my wife, the team is thinner than some people realized, and the starting pitching outside of Penny hasn't been solid.
2006-04-18 15:52:49
134.   Jon Weisman
As far as the blog goes, we had at least two as recently as Sunday: Christina and MollyKnight.
2006-04-18 15:54:09
135.   Bob Timmermann
But I have a picture of Jon squiring Paula Marshall into a club Saturday!
2006-04-18 15:54:10
136.   Vishal
[123] gosh, i'm so glad we DFA'd cody ross for one day of oscar robles, then.
2006-04-18 15:54:48
137.   Marty
Of course, this being the internets and everything, we could all be women and this is just a pecking party.
2006-04-18 15:59:42
138.   Jon Weisman
Paula "Guesting on Veronica Mars" Marshall?

By the way, I believe our favorite black widow has killed another show ... I think Out of Practice is out of luck.

2006-04-18 16:01:50
139.   thinkblue0
good news on Kent. What's the latest on Nomar? a week? Two weeks? Never?
2006-04-18 16:03:39
140.   scareduck
136 - for once, I'm a little more optimistic about this than you are, Vishal; call it Colletti recognizing his mistake.
2006-04-18 16:04:03
141.   scareduck
137 - more likely, we're all dogs.
2006-04-18 16:04:43
142.   scareduck
139 - supposedly he starts tonight.
2006-04-18 16:05:03
143.   Fallout
137 Marty
...pecking party.

I won't say it. I won't. I won'

2006-04-18 16:07:56
144.   Eric Enders
Despite being (wink, nudge) significantly younger than Jon, it looks like we go back to the same year, 1959. Jim Kaat pitched in the first MLB game I remember attending:

2006-04-18 16:09:29
145.   underdog
142 You mean Kent starts tonight... Nomar seems to be very close, but if I had to guess, I'd say next week. Depends on whether they want him to do a stint in the minors first...
2006-04-18 16:27:04
146.   scareduck
145 - they do want him to do a rehab stint in the minors from what I've heard. So probably a couple weeks.
2006-04-18 16:34:12
147.   underdog
Sounds accurate. No reason to rush him since it's a long season and he may break again. Though I'm starting to miss him more than I thought at season's start.
2006-04-18 16:36:20
148.   Sam DC
Daryle Ward gets the start for an injured Jose Guillen and homers in his first AB.

Off for bedtime duties. Actual dodger game on actual tv for me tonight, though! See you later.

2006-04-18 16:36:41
149.   deburns
I was out for a few hours, accounting for the late reaction. Connie Mack managed the Philadelphia A's in my first ML game at Yankee Stadium in 1949. He actually did come up to the steps of the dugout in his suit and tie and wave outfielders around with his scorecard.
That same year I saw my only game at Ebbetts Field, a slugfest with the Reds with Kluszewski hitting the ball off the scoreboard with the Schaefer beer sign on top.
2006-04-18 16:39:30
150.   natepurcell
elbert is pitching today.
Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2006-04-18 16:40:08
151.   natepurcell

apparently, that guy wanted to be the next Dahmer. Pretty gruesome.

2006-04-18 16:40:48
152.   Jon Weisman
149 - We have a Connie Mack winner!

Game thread open up top.

2006-04-18 16:41:46
153.   Gen3Blue
My Grandfather took me to Ebbetts a few times and said I saw Red Schoendiest who I vaguely remember. I definitely remember Don Newcombe, and as a young teen saw Koufax squash the new Mets. Red was born in '23.
good question Jon.
2006-04-18 16:47:11
154.   Voxter
I watched Nolan Ryan pitch against the Mariners in '89 or '90; he made his debut in '66, fully fourteen years before I was born. Heck, that was six years before my parents met and twelve years before they were married. That's kind of . . . weird.
2006-04-18 16:50:43
155.   ToyCannon
Can't imagine his rehab being more then a few days. Very few veterans like Nomar would agree to spend more then a couple of days in the minors. He's only been out of action two weeks so he can't be that rusty.

As far as Robles/Aybar go my take on it is that Ned knew he only needed a player for one game and didn't want to bring up Aybar who until yesterday hadn't played 2nd all year. Wouldn't surprise me a bit if they just release Robles after this stint. He has no future here with Ramon filling his spot. Once Nomar comes off the DL, Loney will head back to AAA and I'm hoping the Dodgers trade Ross to Seattle for Petagine. Seattle could use a RH bat and we could use a LHB. Supposedly Seattle is looking to deal either Petagine or Lawton since they have to many LH bats. A simple deal that would help both teams. Sure eveyone will say we should have just kept Choi but past is past, lets talk about the future. If Nomar gets hurt again Petagine/Saenz would be a better platoon then Loney/Saenz for 2006.

2006-04-18 16:53:17
156.   deburns
As for family longevity, my grandfather was born in Ireland in 1859, came here in 1882, and his name was changed at immigration from Roche to Roach. Go figure.
2006-04-18 16:58:14
157.   scareduck
157 - we can trace our line back to Inverness in Scotland on my dad's side, some time around 1732... been in this country a LONG time. One of my ancestors supposedly served in Washington's cavalry or something like that.
2006-04-18 16:59:46
158.   jasonungar05
145 and 146

I hear it depends on the weather forcast.

2006-04-18 17:15:17
159.   natepurcell
kemp hits his first AA homer. go kemp!
2006-04-18 17:52:25
160.   Woody
My first Dodger game was in the spring of 1957 at the Polo Grounds. Pee Wee Reese was probably the oldest Dodger on that He came up in 1941 which was 7 years before I was born.

Hank Sauer for the Giants also broke in during the '41 season, though I'm not sure he was the oldest. Never saw Ted Williams in person though I certainly saw him on TV many times playing against the Yankees.

2006-04-18 18:12:26
161.   dzzrtRatt
In 1965, I saw the New York Mets play the St. Louis Cardinals (with Bob Gibson on the mound!) at Shea Stadium, and also saw the New York Yankees play the Detroit Tigers at Yankee Stadium. Among the players I saw in those games were Roy McMillan, playing shortstop for the Mets. He debuted in 1951. The Yankee game was "Mickey Mantle Day," and the Mick played in it. I believe he broke into the big leagues also in 1951.
2006-04-18 19:53:59
162.   bill cox
I can't top Woody,but I saw the Reds in Crosley Field as a child with Frank Robinson,Vada Pinson,Wally Post and Gus Bell whose son and grandson have since played in the bigs.
2006-04-18 20:29:12
163.   gcrl
do oldtimer games count?

actually, i saw minnie minoso bat for the st. paul saints a couple of years ago. he debuted in 1949, 31 years before i was born.

in major league action, it would have been stargell i believe.

family wise, my dad's side came to america in the 1600s, settled on cape cod, but decided they were loyalists and moved to canada around the time of the french-indian war. he moved to california in the sixties, and i was born in 1970. i am a first generation american, second time around.

2006-04-19 08:23:40
164.   Gil H
My first favorite Dodger player was Gil Hodges. My favorite uncle took me to my first Dodger game in 1958. I'm sure I saw Gil play then and several times thereafter. He played briefly in 1943, seven years before I was born.
2006-04-19 14:29:26
165.   Steamer
Hey, this was a fun one to read and think about, Jon. For me, it looks like Mickey Mantle, who I saw hit one out of the Big A August of '68. The Mick broke into the bigs in April '51, edging out Mays who followed a month later. Saw 3 Hall of Famers, Mays, Aaron and McCovey play in a doubleheader at Candlestick in 1967.

Maybe that is your next one, Jon, "Most Hall of Famers on the field at the same time"

2006-08-27 19:22:12
166.   oldtimer
Does anyone remember the "old" Mayor's Trophy games?

My father took me to one in 1949 at Yankee Stadium. I remember it as being a festive night - accuracy throws by catchers into a barrel at 2nd base; 3-man (CF - SS - C) relay throws from the outfield - even an egg throwing contest.

The unique thing I remember is there were 3 teams playing in 1 nine inning game.

"How do you do that" is the most asked question - it was easy - I don't remember how the set-up was in 1949, but, for instance, the first 3 innings were Giants vs Yankees; middle 3 were Dodgers vs Yankees and the final 3 were Dodgers vs Giants.

Team with most runs in their 6 innings wins.

How far back do I go? Born: 1939 - earliest baseball thing I remember was the 1947 World Series - first one televised (in NYC only) - we didn't have a TV then, but on the way home from school we passed a bar that let a few of us watch - standing on the outside.

Another memory was Hank Greenburg Day at the Polo Grounds - yes, Polo Grounds - Hank was near the end of his career playing for Pittsburgh and during the last visit to NY by Pittsburgh the Giants honored him - I believe it was the only time a home team had given a "Day" to a visiting player.


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