Sporcle Saturday: Rookie XBHs

He spent five years toiling in the minor leagues as a third baseman, but when the White Sox called up top prospect Carlos Lee from Class AAA Charlotte on Friday they started him in left field, a position he has been playing for all of about 10 days.

“I didn’t expect to get called up when I was playing left field for a week and a half,” Lee said. He did play some left field in the Arizona Instructional League last fall and during spring training.

“When they called me up I was like `Where am I going to play?’ “

Lee hit a home run in his first major-league at-bat but also committed an error on his first chance when he dropped a sinking liner in the fourth inning.

-Chicago Tribune, May 8, 1999

Good morning!

‘Twas on this day in 1999 that Carlos Lee made his MLB debut. While the article –and quote above– doesn’t mention it, Lee’s home run in his first official at-bat made him the franchise’s first player to accomplish that particular feat. Miguel Olivo (2002), Josh Fields (2006), and Zack Collins (2019) would later join him.

Lee, of course, would go on to have a fine rookie season, slashing .293/.312/.463 with 50 extra-base hits and a seventh-place finish in Rookie of the Year voting (A different Carlos –Carlos Beltran– took home the honors). So for today’s Sporcle, I’m asking you to name other rookie White Sox hitters who logged at least 30 extra-base hits in a season: in total, there are 51 names. How many can you get? Good luck!

Quiz Parameters

  • I’ve allotted 15 minutes for completion attempts.
  • For hints, I’ve provided the year, number of XBHs, and position of the player in question.

Useless information to amaze, annoy, confuse, and/or confound your friends and family:

  • The average triple-slash of the players on this list: .276/.333/.431.
  • The record for most extra-base hits by a rookie in MLB history is 89, set by Hal Trosky of Cleveland in 1934.

Direct link here

All data from stathead.com

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Ted Mulvey
Ted Mulvey

White Sox fan, homebrewer, academic librarian. Not necessarily in that order, but quite possibly.

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43/51 before I ran out of time. All of my misses were between 1925 and 1947.


30 (giving myself credit for a mispell on ’26 SS). Tougher than I expected. Interesting (to me) to look at it by decade -how many came in 60’s when pitching was at its acme. And no love for the ’70’s.


Yeah, I was a little surprised Chet Lemon didn’t make the list. Checking his stats, he was half a dozen XBH shy of the cutoff mark in his rookie season.

Joliet Orange Sox

My dad never liked Lemon because of the first impression Lemon made as a rookie when he slugged .328 while putting up an OPS of .626 over almost 500 PA’s. Lemon turned 21 just before that rookie year and was a true example of player development by just putting the player in the major league lineup every day and hoping.

My dad was not a man who changed his mind based on facts and referred to Lemon as a “Punch-and-Judy hitter” for the rest of Lemon’s career. If you wanted to get my dad really, really mad, all you had to say was that Chet Lemon had a more productive career than Harold Baines (a very reasonable statement imo).

Trooper Galactus

Jeez, from his age 22-29 seasons Lemon had an OPS+ of 132. Harold’s OPS+ at those ages (all with the White Sox) was 119, and he wasn’t playing center field.

Trooper Galactus

Yup, I had the same level of surprise that Thomas and Ventura weren’t on the list either. Frank barely exceeded the rookie threshold for PAs, so he just didn’t get much of a shot at it (ended with 21 XBHs) and Robin didn’t have his real breakout until his sophomore season.


42/51. Got everyone after 1943. Very interesting quiz!