Tuesday, December 12, 2006

December 12th, 1912

Red Barkley Born

As some of you might have figured out, Red got himself picked for today's blog because his name is a homophone for the (now deceased) trucker Homer encounters at a steak house. I wish I could say that after nearly two years of doing this my method of finding the day's topic has gotten more refined, but I'm afraid the truth is that things like Red Barkley/Barclay still end up making the choice for me. Such is life.

Barkley was a middle infielder, he saw action in just sixty three games of his career in three years (1937, '39 and '43) for three different teams (the Browns, Boston Braves and Dodgers). For his career he hit just .264 but had almost zero power, he only hit nine extra base hits in his entirely career, all doubles. Isolated power is stat calculated by subtracting batting average from slugging, effectively removing a players singles from his slugging percentage. Barkley's career isolated power was .055; for sake of comparison even Mike Hampton managed a career isolated power of .112.

Barkley is one of only a handful of players to be the grandfather of a Major League player, without also being the father of one. Barkley's grandson Brian Barkley threw eleven innings for the Red Sox in 1998. Evidently, athletic talent skips a generation in the Barkley family; although given the careers of the two Major League Barkley's, perhaps Red's son (and Brian's dad) caught a break.

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