This Week in Giants Baseball History


Posted Feb 20, 2006


Barry's career may not be history quite yet, but this offseason is! Position players report today, as we look back, remember the passing of one of the great Giants and wonder what happened to the great old nicknames.

February 20
Return of Sambo: Apparently the New York Giants missed their Sam, and re-signed first baseman Sam Leslie from the Brooklyn Dodgers on this date in 1936.  Good move – the man who was originally traded to Brooklyn in exchange for Lefty O’Doul batted .295 in ’36, and helped the Giants win the NL Pennant.

 

February 21
Plitt for Tat: A New York Giant for the final three appearances of his Major League career, Norman Plitt was born on this date in 1983, in York PA.  Plitt spent 1918 and the beginning of 1927 with Brooklyn, compiling a 5-12 record.

 

February 22
He Had an ERA of 108.00 in 1918: And yes, he was pitching for the Dodgers at the time.  But 18-year Major Leaguer Clarence Mitchell, who was born on this date in 1891 in Franklin NE, finished his career with 2+ seasons as a Giant during 1930-32.  He won a career-high 13 games in New York in 1931.

 

February 23
From MVP to the Japan League: After an impressive 1994 season with the Cincinnati Reds (.326/30/77), 1989 NL MVP Kevin Mitchell signed a contract with the Daiei Hawks of the Japanese League on this date in 1995.  Mitch would return to the Majors in 1996, but something in that Japanese food must have robbed him of his power – he hit a total of 14 home runs in his final three seasons.

 

February 24
Suitcase Bob: Really – why don’t we have cool nicknames like these anymore?  Perhaps the early equivalent of former Giants outfielder Reggie Sanders, Bob Seeds earned this moniker by playing for six ballclubs during a 9-year career.  The outfielder/first baseman spent the final three seasons of his Major League career at a New York Giant (1938-40), and he was born on this date in 1907, in Ringgold TX.

 

February 25
The Passing of Little Napoleon: Legendary New York Giants manager John McGraw passed away on this date in 1934 at the age of 60.  During his 29+ years as manager, the Giants won ten pennants and three World Series.

 

February 26
Saying No to the Knuckler: The New York Giants traded away Hall of Fame knuckleballer Hoyt Wilhelm to the St. Louis Cardinals on this date in 1957.  Wilhelm would only go on to play 15 more seasons in a stellar 21-year career.  The man they reacquired for Wilhelm, first baseman Whitey Lockman, played two more seasons as a Giant, and was one of the original San Francisco Giants in 1958.



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