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The All-Birthday Hall of Names team started off some time back quite narcissistically, as I compiled a team of players with whom I shared a birthday, July 20. Since then, several dozen dates have taken on roster-shaping posts (from me and from others) and of course, I built teams for my own mom (Feb. 17) and dad (Oct. 20). Well, I have two sisters -- neither one a huge baseball fan -- who have birthdays over the next two weeks, and to complete the (nuclear) family tree, we'll see if teams for their birthdays can take root (see, that's a "family tree" joke) as well.

That means today, my #2 sister, Eileen -- the middle child, the golden girl who was high school valedictorian and all that other soul-crushing perfect role model stuff -- but to whom baseball growing up was no more than "Oh, that Davey Concepcion is cute ..." gets an All-August 27 team.

She shares this birthdate with no less than 54 big league ballplayers, and though none are Hall of Famers (yet, though Mike Maddux's brother, who was born in April, seems a lock to get in -- there's a lesson there somewhere about younger brothers and success), her current home city of Philadelphia seems likely to celebrate the Cooperstown enshrinement of one Jim Thome five years after the big corner infielder takes his 600 or so homers into retirement.

Though nobody on that list of players shares an exact birthdate with dear Eileen, there are plenty of good players scattered across the century-plus of big league annals. Thome we mentioned; Jose Vidro made some All-Star teams; Buddy Bell and Brian McRae were both parts of multi-generation big league families. And there are some great names on the list, if not great players, like Kitty Brashear, Scrappy Carroll, Baldy Louden and Bun Troy, even (no kidding) Phil Collins (no, not the Sussudio guy) -- not to mention the immortal Dizzy Nutter, which come to think of it, might be a nice nickname for big sis.

Oh, incidentally, if you're wondering how old she is now, well, I know better than to share that information publicly; even from Philly to Fort Worth, she would find a way to destroy me for doing so. Idle thought -- and a propos of nothing, of course -- what was Hank Aaron's uniform number again?

Incidentally, as you might expect, there has never been a major league ballplayer with the actual name (first, middle, last or even nickname) "Eileen," but we did manage to find one Isidoro "Izzy" Leon, a RHP who was 0-4 with the 1945 Phillies, and who we can at least refer to as "I. Leon." Close enough?

Anyway, back to the Hall of Names, whereby we present this lineup, which -- for lack of any actual creative ideas -- we will deign to designate ...

** indicates Hall of Famer (none yet)
* indicates All-Star

MGR Lew Simmons (41-55, 1886 Philadelphia Athletics)

C Ed Herrmann* (.240, 80 homers, 1967-78; '74 All-Star)
1B Jim Thome* (at this writing, next homer ties Gehrig)
2B Jose Vidro* (.302, 119 homers, midway through 2007)
SS Hal Janvrin (.232, 1911-22; IF/OF)
3B Buddy Bell* (.279, 201 homers, six Gold Gloves)
LF Brian McRae (.261, 103 HR, 196 SB, 1990-99)
CF Peanuts Lowrey* (.273, 1942-55; also 3B/IF)
RF Jim King (.240, 117 homers, parts of 1955-67)
DH Joe Cunningham* (.291, 64 homers, 1954-66; 1B/OF)

C Johnny Berger (.313, 5-for-16, 1922, '27)
IF Eddie Mulligan (.232, 1915-16, '21-22, '28)
SS Charlie Engle (.251, 1925-26, '30)
IF/OF Baldy Louden (.261, 1907, '12-16; Fed League jumper)
OF Ed Hahn (.237, 1905-10; hit .273 in 1906 World Series)
IF Emil Verban (.272, 1944-50)

RHSP Ernie Broglio (77-74, 1959-66)
RHSP Doc McJames (79-80, 1895-1901)
LHSP Ewald Pyle (11-21, parts of 1939-45)
RHSP Dave Wright (won only start, 1897 CHC; 29 ERA+)
RHSP Rick Gorecki (2-2, 1997-98 LAD, TBD)

RHRP Jim York (16-17, 10 saves, 1970-76)
RHRP Phil Collins (80-85, 24 saves 1923, '29-35)
LHRP Marv Gudat (LHRP, 1929 CIN; OF/1B, '32 CHI; .250 BA, 140 ERA+)
RHRP Justin Miller (16-9, parts of 2002-07)
LHRP Andy Pratt (0-1, 3 IP, 2002 ATL, '04 CHC)

The Final Cuts ...
Obviously, nearly 30 different players don't make the team at all -- when you have 54 candidates for a 25-man roster, that's simple math. But most of those cuts were simple cuppajoe guys who briefly appeared here and there in a big league lineup. That said, the final cuts from this team were ...

  • RHRP Kitty Brashear (1-0 in 3 games with 1899 Louisville Colonels)
  • RHRP Rick Steirer (4-3, 1982-84 CAL)
  • OF/RHSP Carl East (16.20 ERA in one 1915 start; 2-for-6, two '24 games in OF)
So , Bauxites ... how can this team be better?
8/27: Come On, Eileen | 2 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
FanfromTheIsland - Monday, August 27 2007 @ 02:53 PM EDT (#173594) # whom baseball growing up was no more than "Oh, that Davey Concepcion is cute ..."

 Same thing with my sister and Alex Rios.

 Anyway, well written Thomas. It's been a great streak, though a winning one would be a lot better.

FanfromTheIsland - Monday, August 27 2007 @ 02:55 PM EDT (#173595) #
Sorry Mick. That second part was for Thomas' article. D'oh!
8/27: Come On, Eileen | 2 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.