The On Deck Circle

Baseball History, Commentary and Analysis

Baseball Trivia Contest: Hall of Fame Names

Now that we find ourselves here in the dog days of August, let’s have some fun.

On the left-hand column below, I created a list of Hall of Fame baseball players by their surnames only.  On the right-hand side, you will notice a list of the real first names of each of these HOF players.   Your challenge is to match the first name on the right with the HOF player it belongs to on the left.  Each first name will be used just once.

See how many you can match up before you check the answer key at the bottom of the page,  then let me know how you did.  It might help to print out this page so you can do it by hand.

1)  Seaver                                                     A)  Rik

2)  Dean                                                       B)  Adrian

3)  Bender                                                   C)  Leon

4)  Ford                                                        D)  Gordon

5)  Grove                                                     E)  William

6)  Anson                                                     F)  George

7)  Berra                                                       G)  John

8)  Koufax                                                     H)  Edward

9)  Traynor                                                   I)  Jay

10)  Wilson (Hack)                                       J)  Charles

11)  Ewing                                                     K)  Lawrence

12)  Goslin                                                     L)  Robert

13)  Paige (Satchel)                                      M)  Lewis

14)  Fox (Nellie)                                             N)  Jacob

15)  Kelly (King)                                              O)  Harold

16)  Blyleven                                                   P)  Vernon

17) Brouthers (Dan)                                       Q)  Leroy

18)  Gomez (Lefty)                                          R)  Sanford

19)  Cochrane                                                  S)  Michael

20)  Chesbro                                                     T)  Dennis

Answer Key:

1)  F

2)  I

3)  J

4)  H

5)  L

6)  B

7)  K

8)  R

9)  O

10) M

11) E

12) C

13) Q

14) N

15) S

16) A

17) T

18) P

19) D

20) G


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14 thoughts on “Baseball Trivia Contest: Hall of Fame Names

  1. David Meyers on said:

    That was harder than it should have been!

    I knew Grove, Anson, Berra, Koufax, and Paige.

    I “knew” Blyleven after I started looking at the answers, though before I got to him.

    I guessed Chesbro (John->Jack) and Brouthers (Dennis->Dan).

    After the fact, I should have known (Jay “Dizzy”) Dean, (Vernon “Lefty”) Gomez, and (Harold “Pie) Traynor because they sound right to me when I say them. 😉

    The degrees of embarrassment associated with the others varies from lots to none.

    So, I guess I could say I “got” 7 or 8, but should have gotten 10 or 11.

    On an unrelated note, is it possible to search this site? I’ve been reading and enjoying the “surprising stats” pages, but haven’t found them all. One other pair of surprising stats of a different nature that I discovered by browsing the Baseball Almanac some years back was that the last team to bat .300 for a season was the 1950 Red Sox (.302). I was curious if any team had ever done that. In the process, I also discovered that the 1930 National League batted over .300 (.303)! The league as a whole! Different game back then, I guess.


  2. Seven, so I have to re-take this course. Nice diversion.

  3. I was able to name 12, which I think means I won’t have to repeat the course. I think it’s neat that there are two guys with first name of “Adrian” in the Hall of Fame, Addie Joss being the other.

  4. I meant that I believe that most males named “Sandy” have the full first name of “Sanford”.


  5. I knew Seaver, Goslin, Grove, Cochran, Paige, Berra, Anson, and Koufax right off the bat without looking the clues. Some others I got after looking at the clues; they spurred my memory. A couple of others, I guessed at, and lucked out. So all in all, I did pretty well.

    I believe that most males named “Sandy” have the real first name of “Sandy”; I already knew Koufax’s full first name, anyway.

    I think I read somewhere, incidentally, that “Koufax” wasn’t Sanford Koufax’s original last name.

    No self-respecting Met fan of a certain age could ever have gotten George Thomas Seaver wrong.


    • Sounds like you did fine to me. I believe Koufax’s original last name was Braun. But I guess Sandy Koufax sounds a bit cooler than Sanford Braun. Here’s another one for you. Outfielder Ping Bodie’s real name was Francesco Stephano Pezzolo. My name is so boring, in comparison.

  6. Damn, that’s a good one! I could only get three right off the bat-Paige, Berra, and Koufax. I got lucky guessing one or two others, but three out of 20. I’m ashamed and will dig out the old baseball encyclopedia.

    In hindsight I should have got Blyleven right since I knew he was born in the Netherlands. Oh well, better luck next time. Keep em coming.

  7. I didn’t get a single one right. Have you checked out Dave’s Blog of Funny Names?
    Baseball is his strongest suit.

  8. Rich Looby on said:

    I got 12. The only one I missed that I shoulda had was Cochrane. Missed most of the real old timers.

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