Bristol Robotham "Bris" Lord, aka "The Human Eyeball"
This post is the second in my series on the best player names in the Braves franchise's long history. Part 1 covered the years 1876 to 1906. This post deals with the years 1907 to 1935, when the franchise was known as the Doves (1907 to '11), the Rustlers ('12), and for the first time, the Braves ('13 to '35).
Jiggs Parson, 1910-11: Parson had a 4.89 ERA over 60 innings for the Doves & Rustlers in 1910 and 1911. After that, the Jiggs was up; he never played in MLB again.
Les Mann, 1913-14, 1919-20, 1924-27: While his given name was rather emasculating, Mann compensated with the nickname "Major." Regardless, Mann had a long career that included 3 stints with the Braves franchise. A speedy outfielder, he didn't hit for much power. That doesn't make him any less of a man (sorry), though... he started his career in the Dead Ball Era, when almost no one hit for much power.
Bris Lord, 1913: Lord is one of my favorite players of all time, and not just because his name implies that he's the King of the Mohels. In addition, his middle name is "Robotham," which includes two of my favorite things: robot and ham. And best of all, Lord's nickname is "The Human Eyeball." How great a nickname is that? Lord hit .251 / .276 / .387 in his time with the Braves, his last year in MLB.
Dick Crutcher, 1914-15: Uh, yeah... I'm not going to make any further comments about this name. TC is a family blog. Crutcher had a 3.65 career ERA in 202 innings, all for the Braves.
Dizzy Nutter, 1919: Nutter had no extra-base hits in his 56 career plate appearances, all of them for the Braves in 1919. At least he had a spectacular name.
Stuffy McInnis, 1923-24: McInnis was a star 1st baseman for the Philadelphia A's early in his career, though he didn't arrive with the Braves until he was well past his prime. Stuffy's specialty was the sac bunt; he had 383 of them in his career, and led all of MLB with 37 in his first year with the Braves. Overall with the Braves, McInnis had a .303 / .327 / .376 line.
Hod Kibbie, 1925: "Hod Kibbie" sounds like a name that was made up by a 5-year-old. Kibbie played just one year in MLB, hitting .268 / .348 / .317 while playing 2nd base and shortstop.
Shanty Hogan, 1925-27, 1933-35: Hogan was a decent-hitting catcher (.272 / .322 / .354 in his years with the Braves, though he hit better when with the Giants) who was mainly known for being overweight. He's listed at 6'1" and 240 pounds, though he probably weighed more than that at times. He's the only MLB player ever named "Shanty."
Clay Touchstone, 1928-29: Can something be a "stone" if it is made out of clay? Seriously, though, Touchstone had a remarkable career, even if he wasn't very successful. He appeared in 6 games for the Braves in these 2 seasons at ages 25 and 26, giving up 13 runs (9 earned) in 10.2 IP. Then he didn't appear in the majors for 15 years before returning with the White Sox in 1945, at age 42 (with a similar lack of success). Yeah, the shortage of players due to World War II helped him come back, but that is pretty cool.
Red Barron, 1929: A Georgia Tech graduate (like myself), Barron got just 22 PAs in his MLB career, all for the Braves. He hit a measly .190 / .227 / .238. He would've been 19 when World War I ended; that's a bit young for a flying ace, but it's not inconceivable.
Buzz Boyle, 1929-30: Boyle may have been born to soon to be an astronaut, but he found time to make the Braves as a reserve outfielder. He hit .259 / .328 / .379 in 67 PAs with the team.
Socks Seibold, 1929-33: Sadly, Seibold never got to play with Boots Poffenberger. He did, however, toss 53 complete games and 6 shutouts in his time with the Braves. His 4.48 ERA seems bad, but it was only a bit below average, since it was a great era for hitting.
Dutch Holland, 1932-33: From the department of redundancy department... Holland, an outfielder, hit .289 / .342 / .390 in his 2 years with the Braves.
Pinky Hargrave, 1932-33 and Pinky Whitney, 1933-36: It's too bad neither Pinky got to play with Dave Brain; who knows what they could have accomplished together? Still, having two Pinkies on one team (in 1933) isn't too shabby. Hargrave played the last 2 seasons of his 10-year career with the Braves, hitting .241 / .313 / .352. Whitney was the Braves' main third baseman for 3+ seasons, hitting .258 / .299 / .365.
Huck Betts, 1932-35: Betts makes the list because his name doubles as a complete sentence if you read it out loud, something that I always love. (I picture his name as a lost sentence from Huckleberry Finn, presumably set in a riverboat gambling den.) Despite striking out almost nobody (181 Ks in 836 innings for the Braves), Betts had two pretty good years in '32 and '33, posting ERAs of 2.80 and 2.79 in more than 460 combined innings. Perhaps predictably, Betts fell off dramatically after that, and was out of the majors by 1935.
I hope you enjoyed these names as much as I did. Let me know if you have any suggestions for future editions, or if you think I missed any great names from the franchise's first 60 years.
Coming up next week: Part 3, covering the franchise's final years in Boston and its time in Milwaukee.