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Double Your PleasureóDouble Your Doubleplay Combo
2006-11-29 11:58
by Mike Carminati

The St. Louis Cardinals signed second baseman Adam Kennedy to a three-year, $10M contract yesterday and will, thereby, re-team Kennedy with his former doubleplay partner from the 2002 champion Angels, David Eckstein.

Barring injury Eckstein-Kennedy will become just the 17th keystone combination to start for two separate franchises. The last doubleplay combo to double up with a second team were Neifi Perez and Todd Walker who started for the Rockies in 2001 and then the Cubs in 2005. There have been just seven replanted doubleplay combos in the majors since World War I.

Here's the full list in chronological order:

Tm1StartEndWS?Player1POSPlayer2POSStartEndTm2WS?Player1 POSPlayer2 POS
Chicago White Stockings18781878 Bob FergusonSSBill McClellan2B18831883Philadelphia Quakers 2BSS
Cleveland Blues18801883 Fred Dunlap2BJack GlasscockSS18851886St. Louis Maroons 2BSS
Buffalo Bisons18851885 Hardy Richardson2BJack RoweSS18881888Detroit Wolverines 2BSS
Detroit Wolverines188618871887Fred Dunlap2BJack RoweSS18891889Pittsburgh Alleghenys 2BSS
Indianapolis Hoosiers18871889 Charley Bassett2BJack GlasscockSS18901890New York Giants 2BSS
Brooklyn Grooms/Bridegrooms18931896 Tommy CorcoranSSTom Daly2B19031903Cincinnati Reds SS2B
St. Louis Browns18971897 Monte CrossSSBill Hallman2B19011901Philadelphia Phillies SS2B
St. Louis Cardinals19011901 Dick Padden2BBobby WallaceSS19021904St. Louis Browns 2BSS
Philadelphia Phillies19071913 Mickey DoolanSSOtto Knabe2B19141915Baltimore Terrapins SS2B
Boston Braves19171917 Rabbit MaranvilleSSJohnny Rawlings2B19231923Pittsburgh Pirates SS2B
Boston Braves19481949 Alvin DarkSSEddie Stanky2B19501951New York Giants SS2B
St. Louis Cardinals19581958 Don Blasingame2BEddie KaskoSS19611961Cincinnati Reds 2BSS
Chicago Cubs19771978 Ivan DeJesusSSManny Trillo2B19821982Philadelphia Phillies SS2B
New York Mets19941995 Jeff Kent2BJose VizcainoSS19971997San Francisco Giants 2BSS
St. Louis Cardinals19961996 Luis Alicea2BRoyce ClaytonSS20002000Texas Rangers 2BSS
Colorado Rockies20012001 Neifi PerezSSTodd Walker2B20052005Chicago Cubs SS2B
Anaheim Angels200120042002David EcksteinSSAdam Kennedy2B2007?St. Louis Cardinals?SS2B

There are a few things worth noting here.

The only World Champion keystone combo to repeat with another team prior to Eckstein-Kennedy were Fred Dunlap and Jack Rowe with the 1887 Detroit Wolverines.

Dunlap, Rowe, and Jack Glassock were the only men to appear on the list more than once. Dang, those nineteenth-century doubleplay combinations were incestuous.

Bob Ferguson and Bill McClellan are the only men on the list to appear in two doubleplay combos but to also switch positions. McClellan went from second with the White Stockings (now Cubs) in 1878 to shortstop for the Philly Quakers (cum Phillies) in their inaugural year, 1883 while Ferguson went from short to second.

Finally, my favorite: the Phils recreated the Cubs' late-Seventies doubleplay tandem for one season, that was bookended by two extremely memorial trades involving the two players. First, the Phils traded Larry Bowa for Ivan DeJesus to reunite him with Trillo. That would have been an OK deal. That is until the Chicago GM, Dallas Green, until recently the Phillie personnel director, asked them to toss in a prospect. Of course, his name was Ryne Sandberg, thereby making it among not only the worst Phils trades ever but among the worst trades of all time. At the end of 1982, the Phils traded Trillo along with four other players for Von "Five-for-One" Hayes, who the Phils tabbed as their next franchise player. Hayes was actually pretty good for the Phils but the balance sheet for this one is slanted against the Phils and continues to get worse as the octogenarian Julio Franco continues to play 24 years later.

The three-year gap between Eckstein-Kennedy 6-4-3 double plays is nothing compared to the seven-year wait between Tommy Corcoran-to-Tom Daly flips:

Player1Player2Tm1Last YrTm2First YrYrs Diff
Tommy CorcoranTom DalyBrooklyn Grooms/Bridegrooms1896Cincinnati Reds19037
Rabbit MaranvilleJohnny RawlingsBoston Braves1917Pittsburgh Pirates19236
Bob FergusonBill McClellanChicago White Stockings1878Philadelphia Quakers18835
Monte CrossBill HallmanSt. Louis Browns1897Philadelphia Phillies19014
Ivan DeJesusManny TrilloChicago Cubs1978Philadelphia Phillies19824
Luis AliceaRoyce ClaytonSt. Louis Cardinals1996Texas Rangers20004
Neifi PerezTodd WalkerColorado Rockies2001Chicago Cubs20054
Hardy RichardsonJack RoweBuffalo Bisons1885Detroit Wolverines18883
Don BlasingameEddie KaskoSt. Louis Cardinals1958Cincinnati Reds19613
David EcksteinAdam KennedyAnaheim Angels2004St. Louis Cardinals20073

If the Cardinals repeat with a World Series crown next year—OK, stop laughing—Kennedy-Eckstein will be the first doubleplay combo to start and win a ring for two separate franchises. They also may hold the record for the most times being referred to as "pesky" for a two-team doubleplay combination.

2006-11-29 12:03:25
1.   kylepetterson
"Tommy Corcoran"? Any relation to Cliff?
2006-11-29 12:03:50
2.   kylepetterson
2 Non-sexual, of coarse.
2006-11-29 14:37:29
3.   jakewoods
kennedy just really missed him
2006-11-29 15:24:46
4.   Brent is a Dodger Fan
2 In the course of reading that comment, I remarked to myself, "that's a coarse way of spelling!"
2006-11-30 03:27:11
5.   Garnered
Kent and Vizcaino we're together 3 times--don't forget the 2003-04 Astros! I wonder if they hang out much...
2006-11-30 18:16:38
6.   Mike Carminati
Yeah, but Vizcaino was never the starting SS over the course of the season in Houston.

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