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Sports Then and Now



Minnie Minoso: Baseball’s 7-Decade Man 6

Posted on May 18, 2014 by Dean Hybl
Minnie Minoso

Minnie Minoso

The May Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month is the only person in professional baseball history to appear in a game in seven different decades.

Santurnino “Minnie” Minoso made his major league debut with the Cleveland Indians in 1949 and appeared in a major or independent league professional game in each of the following six decades to establish a record that will likely never be broken. Read the rest of this entry →

Hoyt Wilhem: Knuckleball Workhorse 9

Posted on April 07, 2014 by Dean Hybl

The April Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month was 29-years-old when he made his major league debut, but still managed to pitch for 21 years and become the first pitcher in MLB history to appear in more than 1,000 games.

Hoyt Wilhelm made his professional baseball debut as a 19-year-old in 1942, but after serving in World War II (earning a Purple Heart during the Battle of the Bulge) and then spending five years in the minor leagues it wasn’t until 10 years later that he would make his major league debut. Read the rest of this entry →

Catching Star Ed Herrmann 3

Posted on July 07, 2013 by Dean Hybl
Ed Herrmann

Ed Herrmann

The Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month was an American League All-Star in 1974 and a solid catcher during his 11 year Major League career.

Ed Herrmann had baseball in his blood as his grandfather, Marty Herrmann, did not allow a run or hit during his one inning of action as a major league pitcher for the Brooklyn Robins in 1918.

Fortunately for Ed, his major league career lasted much longer than that of his grandfather.

After appearing in two major league games (and going 2 for 3) for the Chicago White Sox during the 1967 season, Herrmann returned to the majors for good in 1969 and soon was entrenched as the regular catcher for the White Sox. Read the rest of this entry →

Al Simmons: Original All-Star 0

Posted on July 04, 2012 by Dean Hybl

Al Simmons

The July Sports Then and Now Athlete of the Month hit .462 while starting the first three All-Star Games during a stellar 20-year career that ended with his induction in the Baseball Hall of Fame.

One of the premier outfielders of his generation, Al Simmons was not as well known as Babe Ruth, but he was a steady run producer who helped the Philadelphia Athletics edge the New York Yankees for three straight American League titles from 1929-1931 while claiming two World Series titles. Read the rest of this entry →

Tom Glavine and Frank Thomas: When Will They Be Cooperstown Bound? 8

Posted on February 14, 2010 by Dean Hybl
Will Frank Thomas and Tom Glavine enter the Hall of Fame when they become eligible in 2014?

Will Frank Thomas and Tom Glavine enter the Hall of Fame when they become eligible in 2014?

Now that Frank Thomas and Tom Glavine have both officially retired from Major League Baseball, it is time for that time honored tradition of debating whether they are Hall of Fame bound.

In both cases, I don’t think it is a matter as much of ‘if” they will get the call from Cooperstown, but instead “when” they will actually receive the prestigious honor.

With first-year nominee Roberto Alomar just missing selection in 2010, it served as a reminder that not everyone who seems a lock to get into the Hall of Fame will receive enough support in their initial year of eligibility.

In fact, when you look at players with comparable careers to both Thomas and Glavine, it might actually be considered a surprise if either of these great players actually reach the 75% mark during their first year of eligibility.

Given that he eclipsed the magical 300-win plateau, it might be a bit of a surprise to suggest that Glavine is not a first ballot lock.

However, both the history of similar candidates and the other candidates on the ballot in 2014 could conspire to hurt Glavine’s chances of first time induction.

Of the 20 pitchers with 300 or more victories and who are now eligible for the Hall of Fame, all 20 have plaques in Cooperstown.

However, of the eight pitchers who have reached 300 victories since 1950, only three (Tom Seaver, Steve Carlton and Nolan Ryan) reached the Hall of Fame in their initial year of eligibility. Read the rest of this entry →

A Sports Fan’s Dream Day: Live Blog From the Cubs-Sox and Bears Games 4

Posted on September 03, 2009 by Jacob Nitzberg

It all started with a thunderstorm.

Live Blog

On June 16th, I was all set to attend the first game of the Crosstown Classic between the Cubs and the White Sox at Wrigley Field.  Then Mother Nature struck, postponing the game.

Instead of playing a double header, the game was rescheduled for the first mutual off day, September 3rd.  As fate would have it, the Chicago Bears, the team for whom I hold season tickets, just happened to be playing their fourth and final preseason game on that same day.

I’ve been racking my brain, and I can’t think of another time when a Chicagoan, or a fan from any city for that matter, would have the chance to attend a full game of three major sports teams from their hometown in the same day.  While I’m lucky enough to be the one going, it would be rude of me not to share it with those of you in the Sports Then and Now community.

So get ready, because starting with my arrival in Wrigleyville and lasting until the final whistle in Soldier Field, I’ll be coming to you live from both games via the World Wide Interweb.  Using just my phone and that fancy Twitter application, I’ll be live blogging from in and around both Wrigley Field and Soldier Field, bringing you all the action and perspective from a fan lucky enough to be at both games (in increments of 140 characters or less).

I’ll be posting the updates to the site as often as I can, but for the most up-to-date posts, check out the LIVE BLOG. Read the rest of this entry →

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    • Tony Oliva: Hall of Fame Worthy
      April 21, 2019 | 5:18 pm
      Tony Oliva

      Cuba is known for producing great baseball talent and there has arguably been no one from the island better than the Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month.

      Before injuries cut short his Hall of Fame worthy career, Tony Oliva was one of the best hitters in baseball and combined with Hall of Famers Rod Carew and Harmen Killebrew to make the Minnesota Twins a perennial American League contender during the late 1960s.

      Read more »

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