Baseball-reference.com, which may be the best website in the world other than Redleg Nation, has a feature I just now saw called “Most Common Starters” by team, both by years played and by number of games. There are surprises. This may be a great chance to learn about some Reds players that you may not know.
Why does this matter to me? I don’t know, but history is bound to repeat itself. Even if a player can’t come back and play after their skills have faded, I still think their skill set is likely to reoccur.
First, the most common starters by number of years listed as the most common starter for that season. Also, I didn’t link all the players this time. Click on the “Most Common Starters” link above and it will take you to the page where all these guys have links to their individual pages.
Some surprises, huh? More 1880’s players than I expected and then the expected longevity of the Big Red Machine days. Ival Goodman of the 1939-40 World Series teams surprised me. He was our first true home run hitter, connecting for 30 in 1938.
Now by games…they list the top five by position:
C–Johnny Bench 1742, Ernie Lombardi 1053, Ivey Wingo 955, Joe Oliver 738, Johnny Edwards 731
1b–Ted Kluszewski 1255, Frank McCormick 1206, Dan Driessen 1156, Tony Perez 1092, Sean Casey 1030
2b-Bid McPhee 2129, Ron Oester 1171, Joe Morgan 1116, Johnny Temple 948, Lonnie Frey 889
3b–Hick Carpenter 890, Heinie Groh 883, Chris Sabo 792, Tony Perez 760, Grady Hatton 729
SS–Dave Concepcion 2178, Barry Larkin 2085, Roy McMillan 1302, Tim Corcoran 1164, Leo Cardenas 1138
LF–Adam Dunn 941, George Foster 882, Bob Bescher 731, Frank Robinson 697, Pat Duncan 687
CF–Vada Pinson 1497, Edd Roush 1317, Cesar Geronimo 1031, Gus Bell 814, Eric Davis 770
RF–Ival Goodman 892, Ken Griffey Sr. 876, Mike Mitchell 813, Gee Walker 804, Paul O’Neill 685
No Pete Rose, Robinson barely mentioned, no Ken Griffey Jr. Rose and Robinson played different positions often for the Reds, minimizing their one position dominance. I was surprised to see Geronimo so high and Edwards usually gets lost in the shuffle because of Bench. Adam Dunn has played the most games at LF? That surprised me, too.
So..my opinion of batting orders from the most years played common starters:
For the list of most games played by position, my batting order would be:
My real list of Reds best players with lineup:
Rose 3b, Morgan 2b, Robinson RF, Kluszewski 1b, Bench C, Roush CF, Davis LF, Larkin SS
Reserves: Tony Perez 1b-3b, Heinie Groh 3b-2b, Dave Concepcion SS, Vada Pinson CF, Adam Dunn LF, C–Ernie Lombardi, 2b–Bid McPhee
Pitchers: Bucky Walters, Paul Derringer, Eppa Rixey, Dolf Luque, Jim Maloney, Noodles Hahn, Jose Rijo, Mario Soto, Tom Seaver, Tony Mullane
Sorry, no relievers. I think the guys above could do some swing duty.
I don’t like leaving off John Reilly, Frank McCormick or George Foster off the positional roster. I would also like to include Johnny Vander Meer and Gary Nolan. May I expand my roster?
Most Common Pitchers listed by most years:
SP: Eppa Rixey, Dolf Luque, Bucky Walters, Paul Derringer, Pete Donohue.
RP: Danny Graves, Scott Sullivan, Ray Kolp, Pedro Borbon