Brilliant Reader Challenges: All-Star Snubs, Worst Movie Characters and More
OK, time for some more Brilliant Reader Challenges. They’re coming in fast and furious now, so let’s get to a few this week:
Brilliant Reader Gail challenges me to name the only player in baseball history to have the most hits in the National League one season and the most hits in the American League one season.
Pretty sneaky, Sis!* It took me a pretty good while to figure this one out, even though it happened in back-to-back seasons, 1995 and 1996. The answer is … Lance Johnson! In 1995, while playing for the White Sox, he got 186 hits to lead the AL. The very next year, he signed with the Mets and had a truly spectacular season: He hit .333 with 50 stolen bases and 117 runs scored; he led the league with 21 triples and, yes, 227 hits.
*If you got this reference, please pat yourself on the back … or, since you’re obviously old like I am, maybe add an extra couple of minutes to your afternoon nap.
Gail’s follow-up was to name the person who did the same thing — led the AL and NL one season each — only for stolen bases. I thought that one was easy: I immediately guessed Juan Pierre, but turns out that’s not right. Pierre did lead each league in stolen bases, but he TWICE led the National League in steals. So it can’t be him.
Turns out the answer is …
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