By In Stuff

Fathers, Sons and Hall of Fame

Really fun story from pal Danny Knobler on Mariano Rivera III.

In the story, he mentions that according to Hall of Fame research there have been eight sons of Hall of Famers who have played in the big leagues. So, of course, I had to go look them up because the Washington Nationals game here just got rained out. As Danny knows, there’s NO CHANCE with a rainout that I wouldn’t take on some stupid project like that.

And when I looked it up, well, I count 10:

1. Hall of Famer: Earl Averill (48 WAR)
Son: Earl Averill Jr. (3.5 WAR)

2. Hall of Famer: Yogi Berra (59.5 WAR)
Son: Dale Berra (5.4 WAR)

3. Hall of Famer: Eddie Collins (123.9 WAR)
Son: Eddie Collins Jr. (-1.0 WAR; 299 plate appearances)

4. Hall of Famer: Tony Gwynn (68.8 WAR)
Son: Tony Gwynn Jr. (5.8 WAR)

5. Hall of Famer: Freddie Lindstrom (28.3 WAR)
Son: Chuck Lindstrom (2 plate appearances)*

*Chuck Lindstrom holds the major league record for batting average (1.000), on-base percentage (1.000), slugging percentage (3.000) and OPS (4.000). In his one game, he walked and tripled. He scored a run and drove in a run.

6. Hall of Famer: Connie Mack (5.5 WAR, won 3,731 games as a manager)
Son: Earle Mack (16 plate appearances, called up in three different seasons)

7. Hall of Famer: Jim O’Rourke (51.3 WAR)
Son: Queenie O’Rourke (115 PAs in lone season. Yale man. Great name, too).

8. Hall of Famer: Tony Perez (53.9 WAR)
Son: Eduardo Perez (1 WAR, but more 2,000 PAs)

9. Hall of Famer: George Sisler (54.5 WAR)
Son: Dick Sisler (7.9 WAR)
Son: Dave Sisler (3.0 WAR, pitcher, won 38 and saved 28)

10. Hall of Famer: Ed Walsh (63.2 WAR)
Son: Ed Walsh Jr. (pitched in 79 games in four-year career).

I’m pretty sure that’s right — there have been 10. I would say Dick and Dave Sisler, Eduardo Perez, Tony Gwynn and Dale Berra have had the best careers for sons.

By the way, there has only been one Hall of Fame son, so far:

Father: Sandy Alomar (10.6 WAR)
Hall of Famer: Roberto Alomar (66.8 WAR)

You could count Cal Ripken since his father did manage in the big leagues, though he never played.

Father: Cal Ripken (managed in big leagues)
Son: Cal Ripken Jr. (95.5 WAR)

Soon, though, Ken Griffey Jr. will go into the Hall.

Father: Ken Griffey (34.4 WAR)
Son: Ken Griffey Jr. (83.6 WAR)

And perhaps someday Barry Bonds will go into the Hall.

Father: Bobby Bonds (57.7 WAR)
Son: Barry Bonds (162.4 WAR)

And a few other intriguing Hall of Fame possibilities, just for fun.

Father: Tim Raines (69.1 WAR — will BBWAA finally vote him in?)
Son: Tim Raines Jr. (174 plate appearances)

Father: Bruce Bochy (3 World Championships — he will get into the Hall)
Son: Brett Bochy (3 big league games as a pitcher so far)

Father: Jose Cano (3 big league starts, 1 excellent home run derby outing)
Son: Robinson Cano (52.4 WAR at age 32)

Father: Maury Wills (39.6 WAR — I think he gets elected someday)
Son: Bump Wills (16.5 WAR — better career than I remembered)

Father: Pete Rose (79.1 WAR … Nah)
Son: Pete Rose Jr. (16 PAs, 2 hits)

Update: Thanks to Ross Newhan — or someone commenting for Ross — we have a new one.

Father: Ross Newhan (superb baseball writer, winner of Hall of Fame’s Spink Award)
Son: David Newhan (1,000-plus plate appearances, 8-year career, now a coach).

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30 Responses to Fathers, Sons and Hall of Fame

  1. Cuban X Senators says:

    To carry it just a little further — I saw an Ott grand slam, and it wasn’t Mel’s.

    • Cuban X Senators says:

      Oh, I’d always been under the impression that Ed was Mel’s grandson — turns out that he”s unrelated. So I’m carrying things a lot further than fathers and sons; so far it’s veered right into irrelevancy. Ignore. Nothing to see here.

      • Spencer says:

        Well you still saw an Ott grand slam

      • Mr. Fresh says:

        One reason that I enjoy reading Pos is that the commenters are almost.. well, maybe not almost… as entertaining as the article. You generally don’t find the same level of vitrol you find elsewhere on the internet and sometimes you even find some self deprecating.. dare I say it.. intelligent, commentary. Thanks Pos for creating this type of environment and thanks, Cuban X, for demonstrating it once again.

        • MikeN says:

          > You generally don’t find the same level of vitrol you find elsewhere

          Unless you say the Royals and their manager are good.

        • Cuban X Senators says:

          Oh, well, when a good 53% of what one posts on the internet seems to demand it within 8 minutes of posting, one gets to be well-practiced at self-deprecation.

          I’ll go for a bit of redemption by asking where do the Tiants fit into this? Any other sons of Negro Leaguers with significant baseball careers?

  2. Ross Newhan says:

    Then, of course, there is David Newhan, who played parts of eight seasons in the big leagues, and is the son of Ross Newhan, recipient of the J.G. Taylor Spink award, which put him in the Hall of Fame in 2001.

  3. The Astros selected the sons of Roger Clemens and Craig Biggio In the draft. As a Notre Dame alumnus, I’m hoping that Conor Biggio makes it to the bigs.

  4. MikeN says:

    How do the Alous fit into this?

  5. If you count father and godson …

    • Felipe was Moises dad. Matty and Jesus were Felipe’s brothers, of course, so Moises was their nephew. Mel Rojas is Moises cousin also. No HOF possibilities, of course.

  6. NevadaMark says:

    Were Mel and Ed Ott related?

  7. Andrew says:

    I think the Bell family needs to get some love in this whole deal.

    • Richard says:

      Might be interesting to do something along the lines of “Best Baseball Family”… Bell, Boone, Waner, Dean, Alou, Griffey, Niekro, Perry, Alomar, Bonds, etc.

      • Karyn says:

        Bill James had a note about this in the Historical Abstract. He used Win Shares, and assigned double the points for the second most WS in the family, triple the points for the third highest WS, and on down the line. This was maybe a dozen years ago, so they would have changed, especially if you use one of the variations on WAR.

        My favorite was that Babe Ruth, all by himself, was like third or fourth or something. The note: Claire never could hit the curve.

      • Kuz says:

        I would say the “Best Baseball Family” would be Ruth.

      • AaronB says:

        On the Dean’s: somewhere in one of the books I’ve read on Cards history, several scouts mentioned that the prevailing thought was that Paul Dean actually had better stuff than Dizzy. He just had the misfortune of having his arm give out after just two seasons. Now of course they pitched all winter too in those days, so who knows how many innings those pitchers of the 20’s & 30’s were really throwing.

  8. Dave says:

    Only because it’s somewhat fits the “family” theme of this post, I note that Chuck Lindstrom’s closest parallel in MLB history has to be John Paciorek (brother of MLBers Tom and Jim). In 1963 John played his one major league game. Came to bat 5 times: 3 singles, 2 walks, 3 RBIs, 4 runs. So he also has a career batting average (and OBP) of 1.000.

  9. BobDD says:

    Also Connie Mack and Earle Mack

  10. Michael Green says:

    Given that we have Ross Newhan in the Spinks wing, there’s a chance that the Ford C. Frick Award will go to a few father-son combinations. Skip Caray has, it would seem, a pretty good chance of joining his father Harry, and likewise Joe Buck joining Jack. Thom Brennaman has less of a shot at joining Marty, but it could happen.

  11. EnzoHernandez11 says:

    I’m a little surprised that no Hall of Fame father has ever had a son who had any kind of decent big league career. In fact, it seems likely that some or most of the sons only made it to an MLB roster because people assumed, based on their lineage, that they were more talented than they actually were.

    On the other hand, while there are fewer father-son combos where the son is/could be the Hall of Famer, you’ve got two families (Bonds and Griffey) with some real talent in both generations. It’s sad that the best combo, Bobby and Barry Bonds, who each had Hall of Fame ability, may both be excluded from Cooperstown because of unfortunate choices they made (booze and steroids, respectively). I’m still pulling for Barry to make it, but I know that’s a controversial view around here.

    Entirely different subject: if Kansas City had won Game 7 last year, would it still be self-evident that Bruce Bochy deserves a plaque? His career W-L record, after all, is barely above .500. I’m not trying to argue against Bochy (three rings is a big deal), but nobody is making a case for Cito Gaston, whose W-L percentage is (for now at least) superior. I understand the differences (longer career, four pennants vs. two), but it seems like a lot of luck goes into managerial HoF chances, as opposed to those of the players.

  12. yazmon says:

    While Carl Yastrzemski’s son Carl Michael’s career stalled at AAA, his grandson Michael’s career at AAA is young yet and he may yet get to the show.

  13. James says:

    What do we do about Lou Boudreau and his son-in-law Denny McLain?

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