As noted here previously, in building the historical Baseball Hall of Names, we've cobbled together more than 200 teams, including rosters for every initial and many combinations of initials, days and months of birth, popular culture "themes," and one each for the 25 Most Common North American Surnames (family names), as well as 30+ for shared first/given names.
But that last group of teams has been somewhat less than organized until recently, as the vast majority of the 25 most common male names in the birthplace of baseball (the U.S., that is) had not been covered. We have recently covered the #1 and #2 names (John and Richard) and now move on to the third most-common given first name in America, which is "Charles." So right off, you know we have to name this team ...
** indicates Hall of Famer
* indicates All-Star
Player/MGR Charles "Casey" Stengel** (1905-1842, 10 pennants, 7 rings)
Player/Coach Charlie Comiskey** (840-541, four titles)
Coach Charlie Grimm (1287-1067, four flags, no rings)
Coach Chuck Dressen (1008-973, two flags, no rings)
Player/Coach Charles "Gabby" Hartnett** (203-176, 1938-40 CHC, one flag, no rings)
C Charles "Gabby" Hartnett** (.297, 236 homers in 20 years)
1B Charlie Comiskey** (.264, 1882-94)
2B Charlie Gehringer** (.320, 184 homers, 181 SB in 20 years)
SS Charles "Buddy" Myer* (played more 2B; .303, 156 SB, 1925-41)
3B Charles "Buck" Herzog (played more 2B; .259 in 13 years)
LF Chuck Klein** (.320, 300 homers in 17 years)
CF Charles "Chick" Hafey** (.317, 164 homers in 13 years)
RF Charlie Keller* (.286, 189 homers in 13 years)
DH Charles "Chili" Davis* (.274, 350 homers)
C Charles Johnson* (.245, 167 homers in 12 years through 2005)
2B/SS/3B Charlie Neal* (.259 over eight years)
3B Charles Ray Knight* (.271 in 13 years)
OF Charles "Casey" Stengel** (.284, 1912-25; player/MGR)
OF Chuck Hinton* (.264, 130 SB, 11 years)
OF Charlie Maxwell* (.264, 168 homers, 1950-64)
RHSP Charles "Kid" Nichols** (361-208, 1890-1906)
RHSP Charley Radbourn** (309-195, 1881-91)
RHSP Charles "Red" Ruffing** (273-225 in 22 years)
RHSP Charles "Chief" Bender** (212-127)
LHSP Chuck Finley* (200-173)
RHP Charles Douglas Bair (55-43, 81 saves, 15 years)
RHP Charlie Hough* (216-216, 61 saves)
LHP Chuck McElroy (38-30, 17 saves, 13 years)
LHP Charles Sidney Fernandez* (114-96, "Sid")
RHP Charles "Red" Lucas (157-135, 1923-38)
Chuckin' It ... Wait, you say, what about The Rifleman, that legendary Cub-turned-Cowboy (Hollywood, not Dallas) Chuck Connors? Well, Kevin Joseph Aloysius "Chuck" Connors is not, alas, eligible for this team ... But this is a team full of "riflemen," talking about the starting rotation anyway -- that's four Hall of Famers, and because we want a lefy to run out there every fifth day, we'll settle for a fellow (Chuck Finley) who managed to rack up 200 career wins in one of the most hitter-friendly eras in the game's history (now) ...
If we wanted a colorful flavor on this team, there have been MLB Charleses named Blackburn, Brown, Greene and Gray ... Speaking of Charles Brown, believe it or not, the LHSP went by "Charlie," and the ol' blockhead managed a 1-2 mark with the 1897 Cleveland Spiders ... Two other Charles Browns played in the major leagues, but they went by "Buster" and "Curly," respectively, thus avoiding the century-later "Peanuts" reference ... For those who enjoy Top 40 fiddle music, the devil went down to Georgia with Roxbury, Mass. native Charlie Daniels, who was 0-2 with the 1884 Boston Reds ... One other Charles Daniels to make the majors went by "Chuck" ...
You might figure that Hall of Fame Negro League star Oscar Charleston isn't eligible for this team, but then neither are his fellow Hall of Famers Frederick Charles Lindstrom, Mickey Charles Mantle and Edgar Charles "Sam" Rice -- now that would be a fine outfield! -- or former NYY hurlers RHSP Waite Charles Hoyt and LHSP Edward Charles "Whitey" Ford ... Actually, it's too bad about the middle name rule, as Keith Charles Foulke would probably look better at the back end of the bullpen than Charles Douglas Bair, who didn't even go by his given first name! ...
But hey, the five-man rotation has a combined 1355 wins and 1673 complete games, "dragged down" by Finley's "paltry" modern-day 200 wins and 63 CG, so worrying about the bullpen might not be a constructive use of time ...
Wait (e Hoyt) a minute ... one more Hall of Famer doesn't make it, in Thomas Charles LaSorda, who frankly wouldn't beat out the team's manager Charles Dillon "Casey" Stengel to helm the team, but who might have made the coaching staff ... We can pack the coaching staff with Hall of Famers and other fine talents anyway, like Comiskey, Hartnett (admittedly in the HOF as a player), Dressen and Grimm ... Actually, more than two dozen Charleses have managed in the big leagues, including current Philly skipper Charlie Manuel (308-265 through 2005), Charlie Fox (377-371, mostly with the 1970-74 SFG), Charles "Red" Dooin (392-370 with the 1910-14 Phillies) and Charles "Gabby" Street (365-332, 1929-33, '38 STL) ...
On the other side of the ledger, if you think for a moment that Charles "Heinie" Wagner (52-102 with the 1930 Boston Red Sox) and Charlie Metro (62-102, 1962 CHC, 1970 KCR) had it rough, consider Charles "Chick" Stahl (14-26, 1906 Boston Pilgrims) or more to the point, Charlie Gould (11-77 career mark, including 2-21 with the 1875 New Haven Elm Citys and 9-56 with the 1876 Cincinnati Reds). Even Gould comes out ahead of Charlie Tabor, though; Tabor managed just a 2-40 mark 1875 Brooklyn Atlantics, though he did outpace Gould with his career mark of 13-64 overall ...
Among those not making the team were a series of fine RHSPs like Charles "Babe" Adams (194-140, 1906-26); Charles "Red" Barrett* (23-12,in 1945; 69-69 career); Chuck Estrada* (All-Star rookie in 1960; 50-44 career); Charlie Lea (62-48, 1980s MON); and Charles Nagy* (129-105, 1990-2003), along with several other players at various positions ...
Say, that middle-name-Charles team could really be something ... The father/son combo of James Charles Bagby Sr. (127-88) and All-Star James Charles Bagby Jr. (97-96) are available, as are RHSP and All-Star Andrew Charles Benes and LHSP and All-Star Maurice Charles Harris; in fact, this team might give the "first" Charles team above a bit of a series! Consider ...
C Duane Charles Josephson*
1B Mark Charles Teixeira*
2B Edward Charles Knoblauch*
SS Timothy Charles Wallach*
3B Ronald Charles Cey*
LF Frederick Charles Merkle
CF Curtis Charles Flood*
RF Robert Charles Nieman
DH George Charles Scott Jr.*
C Samuel Charles White*
1B/OF Darin Charles Erstad*
OF Kevin Charles Bass*
OF Oscar Charles Gamble
IF Nominations welcome!
SP Edwin Charles "Preacher" Roe*
SP James Charles Bagby Sr.(dad make the team; son doesn't)
SP Gary Charles Peters*
SP Richard Charles Wise*
SP Carsten Charles Sabathia*
CL Keith Charles Foulke*
RP Kenton Charles Tekulve*
RP Joseph Charles Sambito*
RP William Charles Monbouquette*
RP Wilfred Charles "Sonny" Siebert*
Notes of Middling Interest ... Sure, playing Wallach at short is a reach -- he played just one game there in 1984, but Cey never played short, so Tim moves to the six-hole based on "experience" ... Other suggestions are welcome! ... Monoboquette and Siebert were more starters than relievers, of course, but with three All-Star closers down there, the bullpen should be okay ... So this team is so solid that of the four pitchers originally mentioned in the above paragraph introducing the team, only one even made the roster, the senior Bagby ...