This Ain't Quidditch

Saturday, July 21 2007 @ 03:45 PM EDT

Contributed by: Mick Doherty

Thanks to AWeb for this idea ... I'm embarrassed I didn't think of it myself. With the relase of the latest Harry Potter movie and the last Harry Potter book this summer, let's forget about quidditch for a bit and see if these wizards and muggles can't play a bit of baseball. So, as AWeb wrote, this is "in tribute to the Potter-release day ... [though] I'm not sure if there are enough 'normal' names to make up a team" ...

And while it's true we won't find a big leaguer named "Hermione" or "Severus" we will take this opportunity to pull out the Hall of Names Sorting Hat to meet ...

Harry Potter and the Box of Batter's
** indicates Hall of Fame (Tri-Wizard champion)
* indicates All-Star (mere muggle)

[Potter character shown in brackets to right of player name]

MGR: Jimmy Wood (105-99, parts of 1871-75) [Oliver Wood]

C Darrin Fletcher* (.269, 124 homers, 1989-2002) [Mundungus Fletcher]
1B Jim Bottomley** (.310, 219 homers, 1922-37) [Neville Longbottom]
2B Jimmy Wood (.333, parts of 1871-73) [Oliver Wood]
SS Alan Strange (.223, 1934-35, '40-42)[Bellatrix Lestrange]
3B Keith Lockhart (mostly 2B; .261, 1994-2003) [Gilderoy Lockhart]
LF Louis "Weaser" Scoffic (3-for-7 with 1936 STL) [Ron Weasley]
CF Carson "Skeeter" Bigbee (.287, 1916-26) [Rita Skeeter]
RF Larry Doby** (.283, 253 homers, 1947-59) [Dobby the House Elf]
DH Ned Pettigrew (0-for-2 with 1914 Fed League Buffalo Buffeds) [Peter Pettigrew]

1B Joe Malay (4-for-25, 1933, '35 NYG)
Suggestions welcome! -- C, IF, OF?

RHSP Nellie Potter (92-97 career; 44-23, 1943-45) [Harry Potter]
LHSP Buddy Black (121-116, 1981-95) [Sirius Black]
RHSP Guy "Volde" Morton (98-88, 1914-24) [Voldemort ]
LHSP Randy Wolf* (78-66 through 2007 so far) [Remus Lupin]
RHSP Elmer Riddle* (65-52, 1939-49) [Tom Riddle]

CL-RH Wayne Granger (35-35, 108 saves, 1968-76) [Hermione Granger]
LHRP Vance Lovelace (0-0..79, 9 games. 1988-90) [Luna Lovegood]
RHP Reese "Diggsy" Diggs (1-2, 1934 WSH) [Cedric Diggory]
?HP Al Krumm (0-1, 1889 Pittsburg Alleghenys) [Viktor Krum]
RHP Roy Crabb (2-5, 1912 CHW, PHA) [Vincent Crabbe]

SPELLS & SUCH ... We haven't done an All-Harry team, as AWeb asked, but have come pretty close with Hark, It's the Harold Angels ... There have only been four major leaguers named "Potter" (none since 1977) and just one, Nellie, who had more than a cuppajoe in the bigs ...

There were a number of potential managers for this team, but since there has never been a ballplayer named "Dumbledore," (we actually considered pitcher Matt Albers for "Albus" Dumbledore, but decided that was TOO much of a reach) we opted for Wood, since Oliver Wood was, of course, captain of Harry's quidditch team ... Buddy Black is in his first year managing Padres -- let's see if he stays "Sirius" ahout the position ...

If it seems like another reach to include Jim Bottomley at 1B as the team's only Hall of Famer, and to cite Neville Longbottom as the source, consider: "Bottomley" is just a longer version of the name "Bottom" and therefore is equivalent to "Long-Bottom" ... So, alakazam!, we have a HOFer on the squad ... Sure, it's awkward to have a DH with a career batting average of .000, but Pettigrew apparently never played in the field ... Can we really have a "Crabb(e)" without a Goyle?

There really hasn't been anyone to reach the majors with a given name even close to "Weasley," much less Filch, Hagrid, Hooch, McGonagall, Pomfrey, Snape ... well, you get the idea. Any suggestions? We've obviously ignored the rule about not using nicknames (See "Bigbee, Carson" as our "Skeeter" for another example) ... but let's stick with the rule about only using each name once ...

That means that "Weasley" is still open for creative input, as we have Fred, George, Ginny and that whole clan -- just be sure to name which one you're representing when you suggest someone for our roster! And let's make that input as creative as you like -- see "Randy Wolf" in our rotation thanks to "Remus Lupin" ... if you have to ask, go back to Latin class at your version of Hogwarts ... Sorry 'bout the forced nickname for our third starter -- but who am I to keep Him off the team?

And finally ... if you've already bought and read the book, NO SPOILERS. Breakers of this rule will be banned from the site. So there!