“P”ing on the Shoulders of Giants

The San Francisco Giants have been occasionally starting five different players whose last names begin with the letter P.  One such instance occurred Thursday night at Milwaukee, when their starting nine went as follows: Batting Angel Pagan CF Hunter Pence RF Buster Posey 1B Pablo Sandoval 3B Mike Morse LF Joe Panik 2B Brandon Crawford … Read more

Lotta (Last Name) Letters in the Lineup

(Corrected from an earlier version) Last week, we listed the lineups with the most letters in them (considering last AND first names).  Now we’ll consider only last names. The starting lineup containing the most letters in the last names was achieved by the Chicago Cubs on August 23, 1946, as they hosted the Boston Braves.  … Read more

Lotta Letters in the Lineup

I’m often asked which lineup has had the most letters in it, and I’m going to partially answer that question now. Using the gamelogs from Retrosheet, I have complete batting orders/lineups for roughly 168,000 games from 1911-2013.  I’ve stripped out dashes, spaces, periods, hyphens and other extraneous marks, and present to you the most (and … Read more

Its the End of Your Name As We Know It

Friend of the VORG (and good personal friend) Jeremy Frank recently asked me: “Cubs tonight have lineup with Castro, Navarro, Soriano and Rizzo. How many lineups have had more ending with O, or what’s the most number of players ending with the same letter?” So we went to our chronological list of lineups from 1871-2012, … Read more

Your Last Name is My First Name!

Friend of the VORG Keith DeCandido alerted me to the following Wednesday afternoon: Keith R.A. DeCandido @KRADeC Ben Francisco batting before Francisco Cervelli, and I’m wondering how often that’s happened. (Paging @dianagram….) Well, after poring over the nearly 160,000 Retrosheet gamelogs of NL/AL games through 2012, it appears that there have been approximately 130 instances … Read more

The Gauntlet of 26-Letter Lineups

Its nice to be gaining a reputation for certain kinds of analyses.  Twitter followers, Facebook friends and the like point out to you that “this would be right up your alley” or “has this ever happened in a game?” Such was the case last Friday morning, when ESPN’s Mark Simon DM’ed me the following: Threw … Read more

Historical Opening Day Lineup Turnover Rates

You can tell a bit about the health of a franchise by looking at the rate of change in their Opening Day lineups.  If you see the same names over and over, that generally means a stable (good) ballclub with a productive one through nine.  If you see names changing from year to year, that … Read more