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Bauxite Anders' most recent Minor League Update (Groundouts, Groundouts, Everywhere) leads off with the exploits of Baby Jay hurlers Lance Broadway and Kyle Drabek. Those are two given first names you didn't hear a lot in Major League Baseball's earlier days, a time stuffed with guys named George and Joe and Honus and monikers of that ilk.

Now quick, though, consider that MLB of more recent vintage has featured 20 players with the given first or middle name "Kyle" and another 16 named "Lance" and that's decently even odds, so make your guess ... sure, we can't fill out a full 25-man roster for either, but which name, Lance or Kyle, will fill out a lineup card better?

Let's find out ...

First, a few of the usual caveats; for instance, no last/family names are considered here, so among Kyles, sorry, 1912 Cincinnati CF Andy Kyle; and it's no go for the misspelled and more recent 133-game winning NL RHSP Darryl Kile.

Over in Lance-land, bid farewell to 1977 Kansas City RHRP Gary Lance and to three-time 1982-90 cuppajoe 1B/OF Rick Lancelloti, who did at least blast 276 career home runs in the minor leagues. But none of these guys are eligible for these teams. Drabek will be eligible for one someday soon, and Broadway already is after recent brief stops with the White Sox and Mets.

Speaking of misspellings and the like, on the Lance side, there are a few other difficult eliminations. Yank Terry's full name was Lancelot Yank Terry, so he's right out. You might have heard of Lance Rautzhan, briefly a LHRP with the Dodgers and Brewers in the late 1970's, but his given name was Clarence George Rautzhan, so he's out, too. Laynce Nix might wonder "why" he's not eligible, but the answer to his "why?" is "the 'y' in his name."

Now let's toss a coin to see ... okay, we'll start in reverse alphabetical order and meet the unfortunately-named squad called ...

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

C Lance Parrish* (.252, 324 HR, three GG; seven teams, 1977-95)
1B Lance Niekro (2003-07 SFG; .246/17/79 in 535 AB)
2B Lance Zawadski (hitting around .205 in 2010 SDP debut so far)
SS Lance Blankenship (.222, 1988-93 OAK; mostly 2B/OF, played  two games at SS)
3B Patrick Lance Borders (.253, nine teams, 1988-2005; mostly C, five games at 3B)
LF Lance Berkman* (.298, 319 HR with HOU since 1999)
CF Lance Johnson* (.291, 327 SB, 1987-2000, five teams)
RF Lance Richbourg (.308, four teams, 1922, '24-31)

LHSP Lance Davis (8-4, 2001 CIN)
RHRP Lance Carter* (26 saves for 2003 TBD; three teams, 1999-2006)
LHRP Lance Painter (23-18, five teams, 1993-2003)
RHRP Lance McCullers (28-31, 39 saves, four teams, 1985-92)

Other not-so-notables: LHRP Lance Clemons, RHRP Lance Cormier

And let's introduce the competition, and a special Batter's Box No-Prize to the first Bauxite who can correctly interpret this cryptic team name, as it's time to meet ...

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

C Kyle Phillips (5-for-18 as 2009 TOR rookie)
1B Kyle Blanks (mostly OF; .212/13/37 with 2009-10 SDP)
2B Jason Kyle "Jay" Canizaro (.250, 10 HR, parts of 1996-2002, SFG, MIN)
LF Matthew Kyle Watson (.183, 2003 NYM, 2005 OAK)
CF Leonard Kyle Dykstra* (.285, 285 SB - how 'bout that?, 1985-96)
RF Jason Kyle Perry (TOR draftee was 2-for-17 with 2008 ATL)
DH Dustan Kyle Mohr (.249, 49 homers, five teams, 2001-07)

RHSP Kyle Lohse (85-94 since 2001, four teams; 27-19, 2002-03 MIN)
RHSP Kyle Davies (38-49 since 2005 with ATL, KCR)
LHS/RP Kyle Abbott (4-17, parts of 1991-96, CAL, PHI)
RHRP Kyle Farnsworth (32-53, 27 saves since '99, five teams; 16 saves, '05 DET/ATL)

More not-so-notables: RHSP Kyle Denney (1-2); OF Brandon Kyle Boggs (.217, eight homers, 2008-09 TEX); RHSP Kyle Kendrick (27-16 since 2007 with PHI); RHRP Kristopher Kyle Wilson (14-9, 2000-03 KCR, '06 NYY); RHS/RP Kyle "Skinny" Graham (11-22, 1924-26 BSN, '29 DET -- MLB's first and only Kyle for more than 50 years)

Others missing the Kut: RHSP  Kyle Peterson (5-9, 1999, 2001 MIL); RHSP John Kyle Mitchell (9-14, 1986-89 NYM, '90 BAL); RHS/RP Kyle Snyder (8-17, 2003-06 KCR, 2006-08 BOS); RHRP Kyle McClellan (6-12, five saves, for STL since 2008)

So who wins?
It's pretty clear, I think -- the Lances, even playing without a DH and sticking Borders at the hot corner, they could legitimately just slap the ball at the empty left side of the Kyle infield all day and run up the score pretty big.

Neither team is big in the pitching department, and though the Kyles are probably better -- and certainly deeper -- the Lances could coax 27 outs from Davis, Carter, Painter and McCullers, and there's always Cormier to go to in an emergency. The Lances have the most All-Stars (3-1) and the best single player, Berkman, who will get some HOF support but is unlikely to gain induction.

Actually, at a quick glance, if you combined these teams together -- though I can't think of an even semi-legitimate Hall of Names reason to do so, so speak up if you've got one! -- you'd have a pretty competitive 25-man roster that could make a run at .500 in any of the current 2010 divisions; the team is weak in the middle infield and in right field, and the pitching is a little dicey to start talk of a pennant run, but this team isn't bad ... and it's interesting to note that a slim majority (13/25) of the players on this roster are Kyles, not the probably-better overall single-name roster Lances.

C Lance Parrish*
1B Lance Berkman*
2B Lance Zawadski
SS Lance Blankenship
3B Jason Kyle "Jay" Canizaro 
LF Leonard Kyle Dykstra*
CF Lance Johnson*
RF Lance Richbourg
DH Dustan Kyle Mohr

C Patrick Lance Borders
C Kyle Phillips
1B Lance Niekro
1B/OF Kyle Blanks
OF Matthew Kyle Watson
OF Brandon Kyle Boggs

RHSP Kyle Lohse
LHSP Lance Davis
RHSP Kyle Davies
LHSP Kyle Abbott
RHSP Kyle Kendrick

CL-RH Lance Carter*
SET-RH Kyle Farnsworth 
SET-LH Lance Painter
RHRP Lance McCullers
RHRP Kristopher Kyle Wilson

So Bauxites, who's better? Is anyone missing? And have you got any legitimate ideas to justify combining the names "Kyle" and "Lance," no matter how far-fetched, into one team? Bring it on!

Lance, this is Kyle; Kyle, meet Lance | 5 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
mamboon - Saturday, June 12 2010 @ 12:52 PM EDT (#216904) #


Whew!  That is some post and name research.   I do appreciate your research.   It's likely that Bauxites everywhere are impressed by your considerable work.  Thanks, but don't take this personally...  Kyle or Lance.... none of it matters, the Jays organization has only one Callix.  A Callix Crabbe. 

We need no more.

Mick Doherty - Saturday, June 12 2010 @ 05:09 PM EDT (#216911) #


As you may recall -- you made several contributions -- we did a whole Callix Crabbe-inspired HoN thread a while back. The whole Van Lingle Mungo thing, remember?

A valid point, though, as ol' Callix may have the Greatest Name in MLB History -- if he gets there!

mamboon - Saturday, June 12 2010 @ 07:46 PM EDT (#216915) #


Callix Crabbes or not, nothing should take away from your well done piece on Kyles and Lances.  Thanks for your good work on this! 

Mike Green - Saturday, June 12 2010 @ 08:22 PM EDT (#216916) #
.285, 285 SB - how 'bout that?

This piece was great fun, Mel, er Mick.  The name "Lance" has always made me giggle; it all started when there were two NFL receivers, Allworth and Rentzel, of that name when I was a kid.  Rentzel got himself in a world of trouble by exposing his self to a 10 year old; it was according to wikipedia a second occurrence. 
Mick Doherty - Sunday, June 13 2010 @ 02:56 PM EDT (#216934) #
For what it's worth, the uber-search overlord Google says there are more than 17,000 returns on a search for "Kyle Lance," including a University of Wisconsin soccer player; and almost 13,000 more returns for "Lance Kyle," including a professional race car driver of some sort.

Neither inspires me to relevantly combine the above teams for an actual reason ... anyone else?

Lance, this is Kyle; Kyle, meet Lance | 5 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.