Junior Achievement

Monday, April 18 2005 @ 12:01 AM EDT

Contributed by: Mick Doherty

Thanks to an idea from Bauxite Anders in yesterday's The Youngs and the Rest List Hall of Names feature, here's quick stab at a rarity -- a followup sidebar, for which we have rejected the names "Junior League" and "Junior Circuit" though the promising '70s pop culture reference available in a team called the "Junior Samples" sure was tempting.

Anyway, here we go ...

... looking exclusively at players named "Junior" or who have the family tag "Jr." appended, whether daddy played in The Show or not. Gotta tell you, though, there are going to be some holes, and we could really use Bauxite participation to fill them.

How do we know this to be true? Well, on searching BBRef for the terms Jr., and, separately, Junior, while most of the names you'd expect appeared, none of Jim Bagby Jr., Jerry Hairston Jr. nor Roy Smalley Jr. -- all of whom did happen to have dads who were pretty notable big leaguers and all of whom seem good bets to make this team in some role or another -- appeared at all. Wait, check that -- Roy Smalley Jr. was the big league dad while the former Twin and Yankee SS -- yes, they played the same position -- was actually Roy III.

But be careful in raising your objections -- we were about to include former two-time Tiger 20-game winner Joe Coleman on the above list, as dad Joseph Patrick Coleman was a three-time double-digit winner himself. But Joseph Howard Coleman was no "Jr." and so not eligible for this team.

But there are several non-Jr. "Juniors" along the lines of former Cincinnati 2B Junior Raymond Kennedy, who briefly took over as the Reds' starting second sacker when Joe Morgan returned to the Astros as a free agent after the '79 season. Junior was no Little Joe Jr., for sure, but he is eligible for this team, anyway.

With all that in mind, let's see what we can come up with.

*Indicates All-Star
**Indicates Hall of Famer or obvious future Hall of Famer
# Indicates "Junior" a nickname unrelated to actual name

C Sandy Alomar, Jr.*
1B Jose "Junior" Cardenal# (58 of 2017 career games at 1B)
2B Junior Gilliam*#
SS Lonny Frey*# (14 seasons, came up as SS, three-time All-Star 2B w/CIN)
3B Cal Ripken Jr.**
LF Otis Junior Nixon
CF Ken Griffey Jr.**
RF Jose Cruz Jr.
DH Vern "Junior" Stephens*# (247 career homers, mostly as SLB/BOS 2B/3B)

C John Junior Roseboro* (played six MLB games at 1B)
C Junior Ortiz
2B Junior Spivey*
SS Roy Smalley Jr. (A Kevin Elster/Frank Duffy type)
3B Junior Moore (.260 for '77 ATL, signed as FA with CHW, faded away)
OF Gary Matthews Jr.
OF Junior Felix (That's "Junior Francisco Felix Sanchez"!)
UTIL Jerry Hairston, Jr. (just beats out Junior Noboa)

SP Tony Armas Jr.
SP Jim Bagby Jr. (97-96; consec. 17-win years for 1942-43 CLE)
SP Junior Thompson (29-14, 1939-40 CIN)
SP Junior Herndon (2-5 in 12 games, eight starts for '01 SDP)

RP Junior Kline (30 wins, seven saves, three teams, 1930-34)
RP Junior Walsh (4-10, two saves for 1946-51 PIT)
RP Louis Junior Grasmick (two games, 5 IP for '48 PHI)

Okay, obviously we could use some help at 1B, though the catching depth does allow us to move Roseboro there if necessary. And equally obvious, there aren't many Juniors or Jrs. who take to the hill. And go ahead, YOU tell Ken Griffey Jr. that he's moving to LF for Otis Nixon. The lack of pitching does allow us to expand the bench and stay within 25, so if you have an addition, be sure to suggest the moves and cut that would be necssary.

Given that, who else is missing? Will this be another embarrassing case of a missing Hall of Famer or multi-time All-Star? Bauxite who comes up with the best missing Junior wins forty billion points and a non-cuttlefish sea creature No-Prize. But nobody get cute and suggest J.R. Richard!