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I won't go into the long and tedious details, but I've spent some time thinking about game show hosts recently -- and that naturally led to a Hall of Names take on the topic.

That's right, a team made up entirely of players who share their last/family name with renowned game show hosts such as Len "Bob" Barker, Andre "Richard" Dawson and Blake "Ben" Stein.

As with any game show, of course, a loud nasty buzzing sound will occur ...

... if we break any of the rules, as follows:

  1. Each game show host name can only be used once to add a player to the roster; that is, adding Len Barker would make Kevin Barker ineligible. As omnipresent as Anne Robinson's "Weakest Link" might have seemed a few years ago, only one Robinson, not all four Robbies in Cooperstown, can make this team.
  2. We will only focus on last/family names -- so, Maury Povich, host of the re-made "Twenty-One" does not qualify Maury Wills for the team; nor does "Jeopardy" maven Alex Trebek net us Grover Cleveland Alexander.
  3. No alternate spellings will be accepted; so while Fred Clarke was a Hall of Famer, he does not qualify for the team just because of Dick Clark.
  4. One host, Jim Perry of "Card Sharks" actually has the same exact name as a former MLB All-Star, Gaylord's brother Jim, also a RHSP. Wait, make that two hosts -- as former original "Password" host Jack Clark had the same name as the later moody slugger.
  5. And you'll note that means there are at least two Clarks who were notable game show hosts, Jack and Dick, so we can have two of them on our roster as well.
  6. I'll be honest, I don't know a damn thing about Canadian game shows, so will focus on U.S.-produced and broadcast shows; please feel free to give Canadian-themed suggestions at the conclusion of this presentation.
  7. The host in question (and his or her most notable show) related to each player's name will be specified parenthetically after the standard player stats or career note.
  8. We're stretching a tiny bit to include Vanna White, but there are no "Sajaks" in big league annals, while former daytime "Wheel of Forture" host Rolf Benirschke would be great if this team needed a placekicker.
  9. We'd love to go with All-Star RHRP Dr. Mike Marshall, for Peter Marshall, longtime host of "The Hollywood Squares," but his real last name was LaCock, and if that name rings a bell, it's because Marshall's son, Pete LaCock, was a 1B with the division-dominating Kansas City teams of the 1970s. And MLB players who are sons of game show hosts, even if they have a different "stage" name, get a bye right onto this team.
LET'S GO TO THE JUDGES: Among the game show host names you WON'T be seeing here as they have no MLB equivalents are Wink Martindale, Maury Povich, Pat Sajak, Regis Philbin, Alex Trebek, Jimmy Kimmel, Bert Convy, Gene Rayburn, Chuck Barris, Dick Cavett, Jeremy Paxman, Jeff Probst and Chuck Woolery ... We'd love to have an outfield partly patrolled by Frank Robinson, or maybe Brooks at the hot corner, but this team has no backup catcher OR manager, and we can fill both roles with one Hall of Famer in Uncle Robbie, Wilbert Robinson ... And look at that outfield, anyway! Two All-Stars flanking a Hall of Famer, and all three sharing names with different hosts of "Family Feud."

** indicates Hall of Famer
* indicates All-Star

Player/MGR Wilbert Robinson (Anne of "The Weakest Link")

C Terry Kennedy* (Tom of "The Big Game" and "Password Plus")
1B Bill Stein (Ben of "Win Ben Stein's Money")
2B Frank White* (Vanna of "Wheel of Fortune")
SS Alfredo Griffin* (Merv of "To Tell the Truth")
3B Mickey Finn (Pat of "The Joker's Wild")
LF Brady Anderson* (Louie of still later "Family Feud")
CF Earle Combs** (Ray of the later "Family Feud")
RF Andre Dawson* (Richard of the original "Family Feud")
DH Jack Clark* (also Jack of original "Password")

C Wilbert Robinson (Anne of "The Weakest Link")
1B/OF Pete LaCock (son of Peter Marshall)
IF Tim Cullen (Bill of "To Tell the Truth" among many others)
OF Mark Davidson (John of the new "Hollywood Squares")
UTIL Bruce Edwards* (Ralph of "This is Your Life")

RHSP Jim Perry* (Also Jim of "Card Sharks")
LHSP Watty Clark (20-game winner in '32; Dick of "Pyramid")
RHSP Len Barker* (Bob of "The Price is Right")
LHSP Ted Gray* (George of the syndicated daytime "Weakest Link")
RHSP Brooks Lawrence* (Vicki of "Win, Lose or Draw")

LHRP-CL Tom Hall (32 career saves; Monty of "Let's Make a Deal")
RHRP Uel Eubanks (Bob of "The Newlywed Game" among others)
LHRP Doc Newton (Todd of "Whammy!")
RHRP Bill Fleming (Art of the original "Jeopardy")
LH-LONG Jeff Francis (Arlene of "Talent Show" and "The Prize Patrol")

Okay, Bauxites ... buzz in with suggestions to improve this team!

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Rob - Thursday, September 01 2005 @ 11:59 PM EDT (#127231) #
A quick look at this list of Canadian game shows gives us, among others, Larry Walker, Bobby Cox, Kerry Wood, Dontrelle Willis, HOFer John Ward...maybe Ed Charles to replace Alfredo Griffin?

Wait, Buck Martinez hosted "Knockout"? Surely it's not the same one. Either way, perhaps we have a new catcher.

You know, one could almost put together a half-decent team with the Canadian hosts.

Mick Doherty - Friday, September 02 2005 @ 12:08 AM EDT (#127233) #
Good pickup, Rob. But how do you not mention Dustin McGowan?
Rob - Friday, September 02 2005 @ 08:12 AM EDT (#127236) #
Clearly, I was too shocked by seeibg Buck on there to make a connection with any players debuting in 2005.
Craig B - Friday, September 02 2005 @ 08:31 AM EDT (#127238) #
The greatest quiz show ever, though not really a "Game Show", was _Front Page Challenge_ hosted by Fred Davis. So I like the idea of using Hall of Famer George Davis as the shortstop...
Rob - Friday, September 02 2005 @ 08:41 AM EDT (#127239) #
What the hell is "seeibg"?

Anyway, I can certainly get behind Front Page Challenge -- anything with Pierre Berton certainly deserves mention.
costanza - Friday, September 02 2005 @ 10:23 AM EDT (#127241) #
I have vague recollections (none good) of Buck hosting "Knockout" on TSN.

Perhaps Matthew E. could elaborate further...

Excalabur - Friday, September 02 2005 @ 12:50 PM EDT (#127261) #
According to the Encyclopedia of Baseball catchers, it really was Buck Martinez of the Blue Jays. Now, this might have been a terrible game show I've never heard of, but I think actually being a game show host is a bit of a trump card in this discussion, giving us Buck as a backup catcher.

We then get to pick a different Robinson. Brady Anderson would seem to be The Weakest Link amongst the starters at 3B/OF, so we pick up Frank and bump Anderson to the bench, cutting Davidson? This also allows us to replace one managing Robinson with another, so we still have a player/manager.

Named For Hank - Friday, September 02 2005 @ 01:22 PM EDT (#127263) #
Wow, Matthew E. really does know everything.
Mick Doherty - Friday, September 02 2005 @ 04:08 PM EDT (#127272) #
There's an Encyclopedia of Baseball Catchers?

Mick Doherty - Friday, September 02 2005 @ 04:13 PM EDT (#127275) #
If Buck is the backup catcher, that means we can cut Brady Anderson for Frank Robinson AND get a Hall of Fame manager in Sparky Anderson to run the show.

I would've loved to see Sparky as a game show host. I recall him being hilariously bad as a guest radio host on "WKRP in Cincinnati."
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2006 @ 10:07 PM EDT (#156199) #
Beat the Clock's Gene Wood would profitably give you Smokey Joe Wood.  More recently Julienhe Parker has hosted the show; I don't know whether Dave Parker would dislodge Dawson or Combs, but he'd certainly be a better backup outfielder than Davidson.  Alternatively, one could upgrade at second base from Frank White to Jackie Robinson and play Parker in right, Dawson in center and Combs in left.  Hugh Downs hosted Concentration, which I used to watch back in the stone age.  I don't know if Scott Downs would be an upgrade in the pen.  Jack Bailey hosted Truth or Consequences; you could use Ed Bailey as a backup catcher instead of Buck Martinez, but you'd lose the platoon possibility with Kennedy. 

Finally, Phil Baker hosted the $64,000 Question (the show that inspired the fine Redford movie Quiz Show).  Home Run Baker would be a great addition to this team at third.  An infield of Baker, George Davis, Jackie Robinson and Bill Stein (which one of these things is not like the others?) would be pretty good.

If you need another managerial option, Jack Barry of the Joker's Wild had a namesake who managed the Bosox in 1917.

Jeremy - Friday, September 29 2006 @ 07:49 AM EDT (#156202) #
Peter Bergeron (Tom from the newest Hollywood Squares) might have made this team if he had stayed healthy.

Too bad Bert Convy never made the majors.  He played in the Phillies system as a first baseman in his younger years (early 1950s)

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