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What's with that headline? Well, it's the answer to the riddle, "What did the man say about the bundle of loose-leaf Greek poems that needed to be straightened and stored? (Okay, sorry about that.) Actually, it's a Hall of Names look at whether or not we can build a roster (or at least a lineup) of players bearing the baseball-centric given name of "Homer."

This entry in the Hall of Names is inspired by the big league debut of one Homer Bailey, the tall and lanky Texan who scattered five hits over five innings in winning for the Reds Friday night. He's already just seven wins shy of becoming the all-time winningest Homer ... That said, let's meet ...

The Homer Simp Sons
** indicates Hall of Famer (none)
* indicates All-Star (none of those either)

Player/Manager Harold Homer "Hal" Chase (86-80, 1910-11 NYH)
Player/Coach Henry Homer "Doc" Gessler (3-8, 1914 PITT/Fed)

C Homer "Dixie" Howell (.246, 1947-56)
1B Earl Homer Sheely (.300, parts of 1921-31)
2B Homer Bush (.285, 65 SB, 1997-2004)
SS Homer Ezzell (.264, 1923 SLB, '24-25 BOS, mostly 3B)
3B Homer Summa (.302, 1920-30, mostly OF)
LF Homer Peel (.238, parts of 1927-34)
CF Homer Smoot (.290, 1902-06)
RF Henry Homer "Doc" Gessler (.280, 142 SB, 1903-11)
DH Harold Homer "Hal" Chase (mostly 1B, .291, 941 RBI, 1905-19)
DH Homer Hillebrand (1905-06 PIT)

BENCH PLAYERS (yep, all catchers)
C Homer Davidson (0-for-4 in 9 games with 1908 CLE)
C Homer Howard "Howie" Haworth (1-for-7 with 1915 CLE)
C Homer Thompson (one game, no AB, 1912 NYY)

RHSP Homer Bailey (Perfect so far ... 1-0)
LHSP Homer Hillebrand (8-4, 1905-06, '08 PIT; .237 as 1B/OF/C)
RHRP Homer Blankenship (1-3, 1922-23 CHW, '28 PIT)
RHRP William Homer Harper (6.75 ERA in 8 IP with 1911 SLB)
RHRP Homer Spragins (another 6.75 ERA, in four games with 1947 PHI)

HOMERS ON THE RANGE ... Only 16 men named Homer had appeared in the major leagues through 2006 with Bailey the 17th such player, and just the second in the past half century ... And to get to even that moderate number, we have to relax the usual Hall of Names rule against allowing middle names, though even that allowance nets us just an additional four options ... Apologies to Frank "Home Run" Baker, who appears on the search for "Homer" and who would provide this team with a Hall of Fame presence, but he was no "Homer" ... Hal Chase was the 1916 NL batting champ at .339 but was out of baseball before 1920 ... Davidson had a career OBP of .000 -- no hits, no walks -- but did steal a base and score two runs in his brief cuppajoe ...

Hillebrand -- yes, that's the correct spelling, Shea fans -- is not only the #2 starter and the only southpaw on the team, he's also most of the non-catching bench help, with nearly as much experience elsewhere on the diamond as he had on the mound ... Ezzell was mostly a third baseman, but did play short 21 times in his career, while Summa, primarily an OF, did play twice at 3B -- so with a little juggling, even with limited options, we CAN fill out a complete lineup ... And one look at that bench should tell you that catching depth won't be a problem for this team.

So Bauxites, what do you think? Is this squad of Homers a grand slam, or more of a meaningless late-season solo shot
Homer Here Will Tie It Up | 2 comments | Create New Account
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FanfromTheIsland - Saturday, June 09 2007 @ 10:11 AM EDT (#169608) #
Homer Howard Haworth is a rather... difficult name, to say the absolute and utmost least.
Mike Green - Saturday, June 09 2007 @ 02:31 PM EDT (#169616) #
What names!  Homer Smoot.  Homer Blankenship (I had no idea that there were 5 major leaguers named Blankenship). The best thing about this club is that Hal Chase could try and throw games to make money, but it just would not work because the team wouldn't win anything one way or the other. 

Actually, Homer Bush is not a bad name either.

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