The 20,000th Player in MLB History
According to Baseball-Reference, on May 4, 1871, the first 18 players in major league history debuted in a game between the Kekionga of Fort Wayne and Forest City of Cleveland. Fort Wayne won 2 – 0. While most of these players had forgettable careers, there was one Hall of Famer tucked in there: Deacon White (45.5 bWAR).
Then, 13 years later on Aug. 24, 1884, baseball reached another milestone: the 1,000th player in history. That noteworthy accomplishment is shared by Peek-A-Boo Veach (1.9 bWAR) and Buck West (-0.5 bWAR), who are both listed as the 999th major league player on B-Ref. It is unclear who debuted first that day, but what is clear is that Peek-A-Boo Veach is a A+++ tier baseball name.
It took over eighty years for baseball to reach its 10,000th player. For a long time, this honor belonged to Billy Sorrell (-0.1 bWAR), who played his first game on Sept. 2, 1965 for the Phillies. However, in recent years B-Ref had discovered a couple previously unrecorded debuts which shifted Sorrell to the 10,006th player. No. 10,000 now belongs to Andy Kosco (0.6 bWAR) whose debuts happened in a pinch-hitting appearance for the Twins on Aug. 13, 1965. Kosco grounded out to second in that at-bat.
For a long time on Twitter, Céspedes Family BBQ has been eagerly tracking each and every debut, counting down the numbers as baseball approached in 20,000th player. Yesterday, three players played in their first major league game. No. 19,998 went to Tyler Ivey, a top 10 prospect in the Astros organization. Then, No. 19,999 happened with Jean Carlos Mejía, who threw 2.1 IP of scoreless, one-hit ball in a relief appearance for the Indians. And finally, we witnessed No. 20,000…
"Who is José Godoy?"
Welcome to the show and baseball trivia lore, José! pic.twitter.com/U8U1zC2iqi
— Seattle Mariners (@Mariners) May 22, 2021
20,000th player in MLB history: José Godoy
– signed w/ STL in July '11 out of VZ; $200K signing bonus
– spent 9 years w/ STL; reached Triple-A in '19; at alt site in '20
– elected FA, signed w/ SEA in Nov. '20
– OF COURSE THE 20,000TH PLAYER IN MLB HISTORY IS A BACKUP CATCHER!!! pic.twitter.com/YC8TlMuttL
— Céspedes Family BBQ (@CespedesBBQ) May 22, 2021
Godoy is not a highly-touted prospect in the Mariners organization. In his minor-league career, Godoy failed to post an OPS above .750 across any level besides AAA, where he hit .310/.375/.517 in 32 PAs this year. That must be appealing to a Seattle offense that is desperate to avoid getting no-hit for the third time this year.
Yesterday’s game between the Mariners and Padres was a thrashing. Godoy entered in the sixth as a replacement for Tom Murphy when San Diego was already winning 12 – 1. In his first career AB, Godoy grounded out to third. His second appearance? A nice and easy walk.
Way to Keep Your Eye on the Ball!
Never take your eye off the ball. If you played baseball growing up, that’s a rule you heard over and over again from your coaches. Back in 2015 during a softball game between Texas A&M and Auburn, Tori Vidales showed that she took that lesson to heart.
HOW IS THIS EVEN POSSIBLE? 🤯 pic.twitter.com/fZR4F82yma
— SEC Network (@SECNetwork) May 20, 2021
That one moment in Vidales’ rookie season showed her knack for hitting the ball where no one could catch. In her college career, Vidales became one of A&M’s best hitters ever. She holds the career records in RBIs, runs and total bases, while finishing in second in homers and third in walks and slugging.
Now that I think of it, I haven’t seen a Houdini act quite like that since a baseball one-hopped its way inside Rougned Odor’s jersey in 2014.
Bogaerts Singles, Hurdles His Way to Third
There was some… questionable defense in the Phillies vs. Red Sox game. Boston took advantage of those miscues and worked their way to a crushing 11 – 3 victory. The moment that broke it all open happened in the fifth when Xander Bogaerts slapped a two-RBI single to left field that somehow brought home J.D. Martinez all the way from first. Just watch this sloppiness:
As Jean Segura sat on the ground, almost motionless for a couple of seconds, Bogaerts did something that I’ve only ever seen on a football field before.
Mariners Help Out Young Fan
Last weekend, one young Mariners fan had to be taken out of the game after taking a foul ball to his eye. Ouchie! The Mariners organization reached out and offered him free tickets to a game where he could also meet the team.
My nephew went to the game last night and took a foul ball to the eye, poor guy. Team took great care of him after, he was most upset he had to leave the game than anything else. Thank you @Mariners pic.twitter.com/1ILLL4fF3t
— Chris (@Wallc49ers) May 16, 2021
But wait, there’s more! Yesterday, Seattle gave the brave young fan some very amazing gifts….
— jp crawford (@jp_crawford) May 21, 2021
What an awesome gesture from the Mariners! That’s one way to ensure you have a lifelong fan who will stick with you through thick and thin.
Friday’s Fan Catch of the Day
This honor belongs to a man in the second deck of deep right field at Coors Field who made quite the grab on a 442-foot blast from Raimel Tapia.
In my best @jackcorrigan2 voice (wish mine were that deep). The #Rockies' Raimel Tapia came to the plate in a 4-for-32 funk, oh-for-eight in America's Finest City, San Diego; oh-for-one tonight. But on a 2-2 pitch from the #Dbacks' Seth Frankoff, this is what happened … pic.twitter.com/p2nM4U1dSc
— Thomas Harding (@harding_at_mlb) May 22, 2021
Who needs a glove when you have a perfectly good hat?
What About Shohei Ohtani?
Oh wait, I almost forgot to mention Shohei Ohtani. Here’s a candid photo of him posing with a baseball.
He attac. He protec pic.twitter.com/1Yqtt0mYgr
— Nick Pollack (@PitcherList) May 22, 2021
That is all. Enjoy your Saturday!
Photo by Icon Sportswire | Adapted by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns of Twitter)