Baseball: A Journey Through Midwestern Time & Space
|August 16, 2012||Posted by ReubenFB under Quick Map|
As a youngish fan, I find it difficult to wrap my head around the fact that 19th-century Americans actually played baseball. The stars of that era are largely forgotten – unless they’re associated with major MLB awards , million-dollar memorabilia auctions , or novelty twitter accounts – because it’s hard to connect with people who took the field around the same time we went to . With this in mind, I decided to see just how quickly you could link generations of ballplayers (“X played against Y played against Z…) to connect the 1800′s to the present. My rules:
- The first player had to debut in the 19th century.
- Players passed the generational torch by facing the next player as either a batter or a pitcher.
- The final player had to play at least one game in 2012.
Somewhat to my surprise the 1800′s and 2012 were separated by a string of just 6 players, all of whom played in the Midwest. Behold!
This illustrates two important facts: baseball’s history is rich with symmetry and serendipity, and Jamie Moyer’s extended career is super duper weird .
This was the shortest chain I could find, a prize to anyone who follows my same rules and make it in only 5 players (I’m sure there are other ways to do it in 6). Likewise, a prize to anyone who does it in 6 but closes with a player who continues to be active in 2012, meaning that 40+ year olds Moyer, Mariano Rivera, Miguel Batista, and Andy Pettitte are not eligible. Good luck!