Against The Giants All Time Leaders – Through 2021

giantsIn the past, we’ve looked at the all time leaders in both offensive and defensive categories for all 30 teams. This offseason, we will take our first ever look at those leaders against all 30 clubs. We continue today with the San Francisco Giants.

The Giants began life in 1883 in New York, before moving west to San Francisco in 1957. I’ve seen them play 23 times, first at their old home at Candlestick Park in 1999 and most recently this past September at Wrigley Field.

Home Runs

Name Total
Jose Abreu 3
Moises Alou 2
Michael Barrett 2
Javy Baez 2

Hits

Name Total
Derrek Lee 10
Ryan Theriot 7
Aramis Ramirez 7

Runs

Name Total
Jose Abreu 5
Yolmer Sanchez 5
Derrek Lee 4
Ryan Theriot 4

RBI

Name Total
Jose Abreu 6
Jim Edmonds 5
Yolmer Sanchez 4
Javy Baez 4
Moises Alou 4

Doubles

Name Total
Aramis Ramirez 3
Jim Edmonds 2
Kris Bryant 2
Albert Almora 2

Triples Continue reading →

Against The Rockies All Time Leaders – Through 2021

rockiesIn the past, we’ve looked at the all time leaders in both offensive and defensive categories for all 30 teams.  This offseason, we will take our first ever look at those leaders against all 30 clubs.  We continue today with the Colorado Rockies.

The Rockies began life in 1993, joining the National League along with the then-Florida Marlins.  I saw them for the first time in 2002, as they came to town to battle the Cubs.  Since then, I’ve seen them 15 additional times, most recently in the 2018 Wild Card game.

Home Runs

Name Total
Todd Walker 2
15 tied with 1

Hits

Name Total
Derrek Lee 10
Alfonso Soriano 8
Aramis Ramirez 6
Corey Patterson 6
Mike Fontenot 6

Runs

Name Total
Derrek Lee 6
Alfonso Soriano 5
Ryan Theriot 5

RBI

Name Total
Aramis Ramirez 6
Alfonso Soriano 4
Mark DeRosa 4
Jeromy Burnitz 4

Doubles

Name Total
Aramis Ramirez 3
Mike Fontenot 3
Corey Patterson 2

Triples Continue reading →

By The Numbers – 39

In 1929, uniform numbers appeared on the back of baseball jerseys for the first time, thanks to the Indians and the Yankees.  By 1937, numbers finally appeared across all uniforms, both home and away, across both major leagues.  Since that time, 81 distinct numbers have been worn by members of the White Sox, while the Cubs boast 76.

Today, we continue our look at those players, picking our favorite, if not the best, player to wear each uniform number for both Chicago teams with #39.  77 different players have donned #39 while playing in Chicago, 31 for the White Sox and 46 for the Cubs.

First acquired in 1989, Roberto Hernandez, donning #39, made his major league debut on September 2, 1991, getting the start and going 7 innings for the victory in the White Sox win over the Royals.  He appeared in 9 games in the final month of the season, making the only 3 starts of his career, and finished the year with a 7.80 ERA.  In 1992, Hernandez split the year between Triple A and Chicago, eventually supplanting Bobby Thigpen as the team’s primary closer.  He finished the year with 12 saves and a sparkling 1.65 ERA.  Hernandez had another great year in 1993, saving 38 games in 70 appearances with a 2.29 ERA as the White Sox won their final AL West title.  During the ALCS against the Blue Jays, Hernandez threw 4 scoreless innings in 4 appearances, earning 1 save.

In the strike-shortened 1994 season, Hernandez struggled.  His ERA jumped to 4.91 and he saved only 14 games before the season ended on August 12, despite leading the league in games finished.  When baseball returned in 1995, Hernandez bounced back somewhat, once again leading the league in games finished and lowering his ERA by nearly a full run to 3.92.  1996 was a true return to form for Hernandez.  He led the league in games finished for the third straight year and lowered his ERA by 2 full runs to 1.91.  He earned his first All Star selection and, with 38 saves, finished 6th in Cy Young Award voting.  Hernandez was well on his way to another strong season in 1997, with 27 saves and a 2.44 ERA, when he was included in the infamous White Flag trade on July 31, joining Wilson Alzarez and Danny Darwin in going to the Giants for the collection of Brian Manning, Lorenzo Barcelo, Mike Caruso, Keith Foulke, Bob Howry, and Ken Vining.

On the other side of town, Andrew Chafin wore #39 for the 11 months he was a member of the Cubs.  Acquired on August 31, the trade deadline of the shortened 2020 season, Chafin pitched in 4 games over the final month, posting a 3.00 ERA and retired the only batter he faced in the Wild Card series against the Marlins.  In February, Chafin re-upped with the Cubs and became sort of a cult hero.  On June 24, he was part of a combined no-hitter against the Dodgers.  In 43 appearances for the Cubs in 2021, Chafin recorded a 2.06 ERA with 37 strikeouts in 39.1 innings of work before being traded to the A’s on July 27th.

By The Numbers – 40

In 1929, uniform numbers appeared on the back of baseball jerseys for the first time, thanks to the Indians and the Yankees.  By 1937, numbers finally appeared across all uniforms, both home and away, across both major leagues.  Since that time, 81 distinct numbers have been worn by members of the White Sox, while the Cubs boast 76.

Today, we continue our look at those players, picking our favorite, if not the best, player to wear each uniform number for both Chicago teams with #40.  55 different players have donned #40 while playing in Chicago, 25 for the White Sox and 30 for the Cubs.

Acquired in mid-June, along with George Frazier and Ron Hassey, from the Indians in exchange for Mel Hall, Joe Carter, Don Schulze, and Darryl Banks, Rick Sutcliffe, wearing #40, quickly became the ace of the Cubs staff, going 16-1 with a 2.69 ERA in leading the Cubs to their first division title and his first Cy Young Award.  He then homered in and won Game 1 of the NLCS, the first post-season game at Wrigley Field since the 1945 World Series, before dropping the deciding Game 5 in San Diego.  A free agent after the season, Sutcliffe signed a long term deal with the Cubs.

A hamstring injury limited him to 20 starts in 1985, while arm injuries in 1986 led him to a 5-14 record with a 4.64 ERA in 28 appearances.  He bounced back in 1987, leading the league with 18 wins in 34 starts for the last place Cubs, finishing second in the Cy Young Award voting.  He went 13-14 in 1988, but did somehow manage a steal of home plate on July 29th in a victory against the Phillies.  A resurgence in 1989 helped lead the Cubs to their second divisional title, and he made one start against the Giants in the NLCS.  Recurring arm injuries caused Sutcliffe to miss most of the 1990 and 1991 seasons, with only 24 appearances between the two years, and the Cubs let him leave as a free agent following the 1991 season.

On the other side of town, Wilson Alvarez was acquired by the White Sox, along with Scott Fletcher and Sammy Sosa, for Harold Baines and Fred Manrique on July 29, 1989, making his White Sox debut on August 11, 1991 by throwing an unlikely no hitter against the Orioles at Memorial Stadium.  He made 8 additional starts for the White Sox down the stretch, finishing the year with a 3-2 record and a respectable 3.51 ERA.  1992 saw Alvarez work mostly out of the bullpen, getting only 9 starts out of his 34 appearances.  He posted a career high 1.674 WHIP, giving up 65 walks in just over 100 innings.  This led to an unfortunate 5.20 ERA, despite a 5-3 record.  In 1993, Alvarez managed to break in to the rotation full time.  Despite leading the league with 122 walks, he finished second in the AL with an ERA of 2.95 and ended up with a 15-8 record as the White Sox won the AL West title for the first time in a decade.  He was the winning pitcher in Game 3 of the ALCS, holding the Blue Jays to a single run while throwing a complete game.

Alvarez improved in 1994, earning his first (and only) All Star nod and cutting his walk total nearly in half, helped by the player strike that ended the season in August, and he finished the year with a 12-8 record and a 3.45 ERA.  When baseball returned in 1995, Alvarez struggled to regain his groove, finishing with a losing record for the first time and an ERA of 4.32.  1996 saw a nice bounce back for Alvarez.  While his ERA was still an elevated 4.22, he tied his career high with 15 wins and set career highs for innings pitched and strikeouts.  He continued to impress in 1997, putting up a 9-8 record with a 3.03 ERA by the end of July, when, with the White Sox a mere 3 games back in the standings, he, along with Danny Darwin and Roberto Hernandez, was sent to the Giants for Brian Manning, Lorenzo Barceló, Mike Caruso, Keith Foulke, Bob Howry, and Ken Vining in what would become known as the White Flag Trade.

Two Sides Of The Same Town

cws-chiFollowing last week’s trade deadline deals, Ryan Tepera and Craig Kimbrel became the 36th and 37th people I’ve seen play in person for both the Cubs and the White Sox.  With the first round of crosstown kicking off this afternoon at Wrigley, here’s a look at those players, in alphabetical order.

David Aardsma

After posting a decent season with the Cubs in 2006, Aardsma was traded to the White Sox for Neal Cotts.  Aardsma lasted one season with the Sox, where he was unable to duplicate his success from the year before.

Jason Bere

Drafted by the White Sox in the 36th round in 1990, Bere debuted with the big league club in 1993, finishing 2nd in Rookie of the Year voting.  After an All Star selection in 1994, injuries marred the remainder of his tenure on the South Side, which ended in 1998.  He resurfaced with the Cubs in 2001 and had a decent season, but he went 1-10 in 2002 before being let go.

Emilio Bonifacio

Bonifacio spent back-to-back partial seasons in Chicago, first for the Cubs in 2014 after signing as a free agent, where he played decently enough to be flipped at the trade deadline, along with James Russell, to the Braves for a young catching prospect by the name of Victor Caratini.  He returned to Chicago in 2015, signing with the White Sox, where he he did not do well at all, hitting .167 in 47 games before being released in August.

Welington Castillo

Debuting with the Cubs in 2010, Castillo spent time behind the plate for the Cubs until May of 2015, when, having been replaced in the starting lineup by Miguel Montero, he was flipped to the Mariners.  He returned to Chicago in 2018 after signing with the White Sox as a free agent.  On May 24th of that season, he was suspended 80 games for a violation of the PED policy.  The White Sox then cut bait following the 2019 season, shipping him off to the Rangers.

Neal Cotts

Acquired by the White Sox in the Billy Koch trade, he debuted with the team in 2003.  He was a key contributor in the bullpen during the 2005 championship season, and was the only relief pitcher to appear in all 3 rounds of the playoffs that season.  Following the 2006 season, he was traded to the Cubs for David Aardsma, and he spent the next 3 injury filled seasons on the North Side.

Scott Eyre

Joining the White Sox organization in a 1994 trade with the Rangers, he debuted with the big league team in 1997.  He split the next 4 seasons between the rotation and the bullpen, not to mention between Chicago and Charlotte, before being moved to the Blue Jays following the 2000 ALDS loss to the Mariners.  He joined the Cubs as a free agent for the 2006 season and enjoyed 2 seasons of relative success, before falling apart in 2008, when he was traded to the Phillies.

Kosuke Fukudome Continue reading →

July All Time Leaders – Through 2020

With a full year of baseball on tap after last year’s troubles due to a combination of the corona virus and needless labor squabbles, I thought it would be interesting to look at the all time leaders in both offensive and defensive categories for each month in games that I have attended.

As we continue through the summer months, the warm weather has played a part in my attending 161 games during the month of July, my largest total.  I’ve managed to see a game on every day of the month, despite the 3 day All Star break which falls around the same time every year, with 10 games on the 4th leading the way, thanks to Independence Day fireworks shows, and 3 games on the 6 different dates bringing up the rear.

Home Runs

Name Total
Derrek Lee 10
Paul Konerko 9
Moises Alou 8
Sammy Sosa 8

Hits

Name Total
Alexei Ramirez 54
Jose Abreu 50
Derrek Lee 44
Paul Konerko 44

Runs

Name Total
Derrek Lee 24
Alexei Ramirez 22
Jose Abreu 19
Paul Konerko 19

RBI

Name Total
Derrek Lee 28
Jose Abreu 28
Aramis Ramirez 27

Doubles

Name Total
Gordon Beckham 10
Jose Abreu 9
Aramis Ramirez 9

Triples Continue reading →

June All Time Leaders – Through 2020

With a full year of baseball on tap after last year’s troubles due to a combination of the corona virus and needless labor squabbles, I thought it would be interesting to look at the all time leaders in both offensive and defensive categories for each month in games that I have attended.

As we move into the summer months, I’m sure the nicer weather has played a part in my attending 160 games during the month of June.  I’ve managed to see a game on every day of the month, with 9 games on the 25th leading the way and 2 games on the 16th bringing up the rear.

Home Runs

Name Total
Paul Konerko 23
Sammy Sosa 11
Aramis Ramirez 9
Jermaine Dye 9

Hits

Name Total
Paul Konerko 87
Alexei Ramirez 60
Derrek Lee 59

Runs

Name Total
Paul Konerko 46
Aramis Ramirez 31
Alexei Ramirez 28

RBI

Name Total
Paul Konerko 52
Sammy Sosa 30
Joe Crede 29

Doubles

Name Total
Paul Konerko 16
Derrek Lee 15
Aramis Ramirez 13

Triples Continue reading →

By The Numbers – 62

In 1929, uniform numbers appeared on the back of baseball jerseys for the first time, thanks to the Indians and the Yankees.  By 1937, numbers finally appeared across all uniforms, both home and away, across both major leagues.  Since that time, 81 distinct numbers have been worn by members of the White Sox, while the Cubs boast 76.

Today, we continue our look at those players, picking our favorite, if not the best, player to wear each uniform number for both Chicago teams with #62.  19 players have donned #62 while playing in Chicago, 12 for the White Sox and 7 for the Cubs.

Jose Quintana becomes the next player we’ve come across to wear the same number for both the White Sox and the Cubs.  He originally signed with the White Sox as a minor league free agent on after the 2011 season and made his major league debut on May 7, 2012.  He quickly moved in to the rotation and became a steady, if unlucky, presence on the mound.  As a member of the White Sox, he had a career mark of 50-54 with an unbelievable 65 no decisions.  In his last full season with the team, he made his first All Star team and finished 10th in Cy Young Award voting.

In July of 2017, with the Cubs looking to defend their World Series title and the White Sox looking to rebuild, the two teams pulled off a trade, sending Quintana to the Cubs and Eloy Jimenez and Dylan Cease amongst the haul for the White Sox.  In 3+ seasons with the Cubs, he improved his career winning percentage, but wasn’t the difference maker the team thought they were getting.  He became a free agent following the 2020 season.

Another #62 to appear for both teams was Bob Howry, who pitched for the White Sox from 1998 through 2002 and for the Cubs 2006 through 2008 and again in 2010.  Howry’s most infamous moment came wearing a different number, when, in 2000, he was in the middle of the brawl between the White Sox and the Tigers.

All Season Pitching Leaders – Through 2019

MLB: Cincinnati Reds at Los Angeles DodgersLast week, we took our first look at the offensive leaders per season since 2014.  Today, we do the same with the pitchers for all of the games I’ve attended from 1984 through the 2019 season.  As with the hitters, there is little change from our first look after the 2011 season, but the time was right for another perusal of the stats.  We start with that most maligned pitching stat:

Wins

Year Name Total
2008 Mark Buehrle 8
2003 Matt Clement 6
2006 Freddy Garcia 6
2003 Mark Prior 6
2004 Greg Maddux 6
2005 Mark Buehrle 6
2008 Gavin Floyd 6

Losses

Year Name Total
2003 Kerry Wood 6
2008 Javier Vazquez 6
2003 Matt Clement 5
2004 Greg Maddux 5
2011 Gavin Floyd 5
2005 Greg Maddux 5
2017 Jose Quintana 5
2019 Ivan Nova 5

ERA (> 8 IP)

Year Name Total
1987 Floyd Bannister 0.00
2000 Livan Hernandez 0.00
1997 Wilson Alvarez 0.00
2001 Jeff Fassero 0.00
Continue reading →

Crosstown Pitching Leaders Revisited

cws-chiLast month, the 2019 Crosstown Cup series kicked off at Wrigley Field with the teams splitting the two games.  With round two scheduled to get under way tonight at across town at Guaranteed Rate Field, we look at the pitching leaders from the 71 contests I’ve attended in the annual match-up between the White Sox and the Cubs, starting with:

Wins

Name Total
Carlos Zambrano 4
Mark Buehrle 3
Jon Lieber 3
13 tied with 2

Losses

Name Total
Carlos Zambrano 3
Mark Buehrle 3
Jon Garland 3
Jose Contreras 3
10 tied with 2

ERA (> 9 IP)

Name Total
Matt Thornton 0.00
Glendon Rusch 0.00
Chris Sale 0.56
Kip Wells 1.13
Freddy Garcia 1.20

Strikeouts

Name Total
Carlos Zambrano 46
Continue reading →