Baseball by the (uniform) numbers

Only three players each have worn numbers 78, 79, 81, 91 and 94.

Ed GlynnThis is a picture of Ed Glynn. You probably never heard of him, and I barely remember him myself. He was a journeyman pitcher, for the New York Mets in 1979-1980, and other teams over a ten-year career.

I mention him only because my friend Walter is Glynn’s cousin, and he mentioned that the current #48 for the Mets is the great young pitcher Jacob deGrom. If one goes to the page about the Mets at baseball-reference.com, one finds all sorts of information about the team’s history, including the fact that they’ve retired the number of only one Mets player in its history, Hall of Fame pitcher Tom Seaver, #41.

Further into the minutia hole, one can discover the name of every single player who ever donned a Mets uniform. I’m using the Mets as an example here, but this is true of every team in Major League Baseball, past, and present, though some of those very early teams didn’t use numbered uniforms.

And, one can find out how many people in all of MLB have worn a particular uniform number. 862 players have worn #22 over the years, and 839 have had #27. Glynn and deGrom are two of 506 players to wear #48.

The higher numbers are not as well regarded. Only three players each have worn numbers 78, 79, 81, 91, and 94. Two each have donned 83, 84, 85, and 96. There has only been one person to have worn, as a regular player, not just spring training, the numbers 80, 82, 87, 95, 97, and 98. And NO one has had 86, 89, 90, 92, or 93.

This means that, if you’re going to be a Major League Baseball player, pick a high uniform number. You’ll have a better chance at being the best #89 ever!
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