Twins All Time Leaders – Through 2019

Minnesota-TwinsWith baseball now officially on its way back after the corona virus, I thought it would be an interesting time to look back at the all time leaders in both offensive and defensive categories for all 30 teams. We continue things today with the Minnesota Twins.

The Twins originated in 1901 as the Washington Senators, one of the charter members of the American League.  When Minneapolis was given an expansion team to begin play in 1961, owner Calvin Griffith requested to move the Senators to Minnesota, becoming the Twins, and to have the expansion franchise take over the Senators name in Washington.  I’ve seen them play 59 times at 3 different stadiums, including the division-title deciding game 163 in 2008.

Home Runs

Name Total
Oswaldo Arcia 6
Jason Kubel 4
Brian Dozier 4
Torii Hunter 4

Hits

Name Total
Joe Mauer 43
Justin Morneau 25
Trevor Plouffe 23

Runs

Name Total
Joe Mauer 19
Brian Dozier 13
Trevor Plouffe 11

RBI

Name Total
Justin Morneau 15
Oswaldo Arcia 14
Torii Hunter 11

Doubles

Name Total
Trevor Plouffe 6
Justin Morneau 5
Oswaldo Arcia 5
Joe Mauer 5
Brian Dozier 5

Triples Continue reading →

200 Things To Do In Illinois – Morton Arboretum

Illinois celebrated its bicentennial as a state in December of 2018.  To celebrate, the Chicago Tribune published the Bicentennial Bucket List: 200 Things To Do In Illinois, celebrating the best the state has to offer in history, food, architecture, culture, sports, nature, drink, and oddities.  Now that the state is starting to open back up following the corona virus outbreak, I figured this was the second-best time to look through this collection and cover the ones I’ve done/eaten/seen.

We continue things this week with one of the entries from the Nature category: Morton Arboretum, from Lisle, IL.

Thank Morton Salt Co. founder Joy Morton for this “tree museum” spread across 1,700 acres.  Trees from 40-plus countries populate the nearly century-old arboretum, whose offerings include walks with a certified forest therapy guide.  Cap off the arboreal experience with a cup of tea made from edible plants foraged along the trail.

The Morton Arboretum was a favorite field trip location during my grammar school years.  I have vague recollections of trips there, mostly about seeing trees and butterflies.  I haven’t been there in well over 30 years, so you can’t expect much more from me, can you?

Opting Out

The White Sox announced tonight that pitcher Michael Kopech, who had yet to report to camp due to personal issues, has decided to opt out of the 2020 season.  Kopech, who missed the 2019 season while recovering from Tommy John surgery, will not accrue service time and will not be paid for the season.  Assuming the 2021 season starts on time, opening day will be 939 days since his last outing in September of 2018,

Kopech becomes the first Chicago player to opt out and the first major league player to opt out for whom the missed service time would make a discernible difference.  I doubt he will be the last.

Active Batting Leaders – Through 2019

baseballs2Way back in February, we looked at the overall leaders on both sides of the ball from all of the games I’ve attended between 1984 and 2019.  After a months long pandemic due to the corona virus and weeks spent fighting between the powers that be and the MLBA, Opening Day is finally right around the corner.  Let’s take another look at those numbers, limiting it to players that are still active heading in to the delayed 2020 season.  A few notable retirements will be hardly noticeable on these lists from last year.

Home Runs

Name Total
Jose Abreu 36
Tim Anderson 16
Avisail Garcia 15
Gordon Beckham 15
Melky Cabrera 14

Hits

Name Total
Jose Abreu 193
Gordon Beckham 146
Melky Cabrera 132
Tim Anderson 113
Adam Eaton 105

Runs

Name Total
Jose Abreu 89
Gordon Beckham 85
Tim Anderson 62
Avisail Garcia 58
Adam Eaton 52

RBI

Name Total
Jose Abreu 106
Gordon Beckham 71
Melky Cabrera Continue reading →

Fitbit 6: Week 23

Week 16 of working from home due to the corona virus was still disappointing, in the grand scheme of things, but was my best showing since being stuck at home.  The week got off to a slow start on Sunday, finishing 87 steps shy of 3000.  Monday saw a slight improvement, coming in just shy of 4100 steps.  Tuesday was better, coming in 29 steps shy of 6000.  Wednesday saw another improvement, ending the day with 6500 steps.  Thursday was the high point of the week, finishing above goal with 7600 steps.  Friday was a nice day off, which I translated into 5200 steps.  Saturday came a little lower, due in part to a double celebration of Independence Day and my sister’s birthday, leaving me with 4700 steps.

Total steps: 37,175

Daily average: 5310.7

Royals All Time Leaders – Through 2019

royalsWith baseball now officially on its way back after the corona virus, I thought it would be an interesting time to look back at the all time leaders in both offensive and defensive categories for all 30 teams. We continue today with the Kansas City Royals.

The Royals began life in 1969, joining the American League following the abandonment of the Kansas City market by the A’s following the 1967 season.  I’ve seen them play 55 times, first in 1985 at old Comiskey Park where Willie Wilson took a throw to second base off the noggin, to last April, where I saw them in an early season series at Guaranteed Rate Field.

Home Runs

Name Total
Alex Gordon 6
Eric Hosmer 5
Salvador Perez 5

Hits

Name Total
Eric Hosmer 31
Billy Butler 30
Alcides Escobar 30

Runs

Name Total
Alex Gordon 17
Alcides Escobar 15
Billy Butler 13

RBI

Name Total
Whit Merrifield 17
Billy Butler 16
Salvador Perez 15

Doubles

Name Total
Alcides Escobar 10
Billy Butler 6
Alex Gordon 6

Triples Continue reading →

Book 11 (of 52) – Stuck On The Sox

Stuck On The Sox – Rich Lindberg

This rather light-hearted history of the White Sox, focused primarily from the early 50s until its publication in 1978, comes from noted Chicago historian Rich Lindberg.  I was intrigued when I saw the cover in a Twitter post by one of the NBCSN flunkies, so I ran out to Amazon and found a used copy for a reasonable price.

Truth be told, this really wasn’t worth it.  Aside from 1977, the mid-to-late 70s was not really a great time in White Sox history, and, because of my age, it isn’t a time that I really relate to.  Yeah, there were some names in there, but, for the most part, my life isn’t improved by having read this book.  That said, it was less than 200 pages, so if you happen across it, why not give it a shot?

 

iTunes Top 200: #1

itunes_image4 years ago, we last counted down the Top 200 songs in my iTunes library. Since my iTunes stats are still intact, across multiple PCs, iPods, iPads, and iPhones, I figured it was time to take another look at my most listened to songs, based on number of plays as of January 1, 2020.

Today, we wrap things up with the two songs that are tied for the top spot, each with 224 plays since my stats began in late 2007.  While on their face, the two songs have nothing in common, they have been linked together on the south side of Chicago for many years.

#1: Captain Stubby and the Buccaneers – Let’s Go-Go-Go White Sox
iTunes stats: 224 plays, most recently on 9/29/2019
Previous ranking: #1

On June 18, 2005, the White Sox were hosting the Dodgers in inter-league play, the first time the two teams had faced each other in Chicago since the 1959 World Series.  The Saturday night tilt celebrated the occasion, with the Go-Go White Sox celebrated prior to the game and both teams wearing 1959 throwbacks.  During the game, the stadium crew dusted off a fight song that hadn’t been heard in nearly 50 years, creating a video montage with the words as part of the night’s festivities.  Down 3-1 in the bottom of the 9th, the White Sox rallied for 4 runs, capped off by A.J. Pierzynski’s two run shot to end the game, and a new tradition at US Cellular Field was born.

The song was written by former White Sox minor leaguer Al Trace and his friend Walter “Li’l Wally” Jagiello during the 1959 season as the White Sox battled for their first pennant since throwing the World Series in 1919.  They brought the song to Tom Fouts, leader of Captain Stubby and the Buccaneers, a popular local band best known for performing on WLS Prairie Farmer Radio and writing and performing advertising jingles.  The song and the team were both a success, as the White Sox did indeed win the pennant, but lost the World Series to the Dodgers in 6 games.

Following that June night, the song became a rallying point for the remainder of the 2005 season.  It received national exposure, as Fox included clips of it in their coverage of the team’s trek through the post-season.  WGN utilized it during their coverage of the World Series victory parade, over clips of highlights of both the 1959 and 2005 teams.  While not as ubiquitous today, the song does still show up on occasion at the ballpark, when the White Sox go on a big rally.

I managed to download an MP3 of the tune at some point, and it has had a place on every White Sox victory playlist I’ve created ever since.  A distinction it shares with our next entry.

#1: AC/DC – Thunderstruck
iTunes stats: 224 plays, most recently on 10/25/2019
Previous ranking: #3

The 12th studio album from AC/DC, The Razor’s Edge, was released in September of 1990, with Thunderstruck released as the first single.  It peaked at #5 on the Billboard Mainstream Rock Tracks chart.

The White Sox started taking the field to the song during the 2004 season, and it has been used off and on ever since.  Because of that, it has held a place on every version of my victory playlist since.

Tigers All Time Leaders – Through 2019

tigersWith baseball now officially on its way back after the corona virus, I thought it would be an interesting time to look back at the all time leaders in both offensive and defensive categories for all 30 teams. We continue today with the Detroit Tigers.

The Tigers began life in 1894 as part of the Western League and became a charter franchise of the American League in 1901, making them the oldest one city, one name franchise in the American League.  I’ve seen them play 55 times, including the second game ever, and my first game, at the new Comiskey Park.

Home Runs

Name Total
Miguel Cabrera 8
Nick Castellanos 4
Ryan Raburn 3
Jhonny Peralta 3

Hits

Name Total
Miguel Cabrera 26
Nick Castellanos 19
Ryan Raburn 19

Runs

Name Total
Miguel Cabrera 17
Ian Kinsler 11
Nick Castellanos 10
Austin Jackson 10

RBI

Name Total
Miguel Cabrera 20
Ryan Raburn 13
Nick Castellanos 11

Doubles

Name Total
Jose Iglesias 5
Miguel Cabrera 4
Ian Kinsler 4
Alex Avila 4

Triples Continue reading →

200 Things To Do In Illinois – Route 66

Illinois celebrated its bicentennial as a state in December of 2018. To celebrate, the Chicago Tribune published the Bicentennial Bucket List: 200 Things To Do In Illinois, celebrating the best the state has to offer in history, food, architecture, culture, sports, nature, drink, and oddities. Now that the state is starting to open back up following the corona virus outbreak, I figured this was the second-best time to look through this collection and cover the ones I’ve done/eaten/seen.

We kick things off with one of the entries from the History category: Route 66, from Chicago, IL.

Snap a selfie under the “begin” and “end” signs of historic Route 66, the legendary 20th century highway that stretched nearly 2,500 neon-lit miles from Chicago to Santa Monica, California.  The brown markers are at Michigan Avenue and Adams Street (the westbound starting point) and Michigan and Jackson Boulevard (eastern terminus).

The Mother Road was decommissioned years ago, but lots of Route 66 relics remain along Illinois’ 300-mile stretch between Chicago and St. Louis.

Truth be told, I can’t say that I’ve even seen the signs marking the start and end of Route 66 on Michigan Ave, but it isn’t for a lack of being in the area.  I spent most of grad school 1 block east of Michigan on Jackson, so I would make the walk over on occasion, as time permitted.  Not to mention events in Grant Park, like Lollapalooza or the Cubs championship parade in 2016.