Stats & Info: Ernie Banks

Today’s Trivia: Among active managers, who has managed the most games without making the postseason?

Quick Hits: As the playoff races heat up, several players have some added incentive to extend the season. Here’s a look at notable players with an eye on October, who have never played in the postseason.
Randy Winn just can’t find himself a playoff team. He’s played 1,698 career games without appearing in the postseason. That’s the most for any active player, and 37th most all-time according to Winn joined the Seattle Mariners just after their early-decade dominance. Then he found himself with the San Francisco Giants as they transitioned away from Barry Bonds. After 12 seasons in the bigs, Winn still hadn’t tasted the postseason. Signing with the New York Yankees in the offseason would change that, right? New York released him in May after he hit just .213. Again, Winn had his chance to sign with a contender. On June 5, he signed with the first-place St. Louis Cardinals – a team that is now six games out.

Michael Young may finally see his long wait come to an end. Making his debut the season after the Texas Rangers' last playoff appearance, Young has the second-most career games among active players who haven’t made the postseason.

• The Giants’ Aubrey Huff, who is third behind Winn and Young, could also find himself playing late into October for the first time. Prior to this season, Huff’s teams were 546-776 in games in which he appeared.

• Among all active pitchers, Francisco Cordero has appeared in the most games without appearing in the postseason. Like Young, he made his Rangers debut the year after their last postseason appearance.
Roy Halladay has a Cy Young Award and perfect game, but Boof Bonser, Jorge Sosa and Brian Duensing all have something he does not: A playoff start. No active pitcher has made more starts without appearing in the postseason.

Today’s Leaderboard: Adam Dunn, who will be a free agent at the end the season, actually has the fourth-most career homers for a player with no playoff experience. With another typical season for him, he’ll be second behind the all-time leader. Ernie Banks has both the most career games and home runs without making the postseason.

Key Matchups: With a pivotal series about to begin in San Diego, the Giants need their bats to come alive. San Francisco has posted a 2-9 record against the San Diego Padres this season, largely courtesy of a .219 batting average in those games. Thursday’s starter, Matt Cain, has certainly suffered. The Giants offense has managed a total of five runs in his three starts against San Diego. So who might step up Thursday? Jose Guillen, who has four hits in his last eight at-bats, might be the man to give San Francisco a spark. He is 9-for-19 in his career against Jon Garland, though it’s been two years since they met.

• After snapping their three-game losing streak on Wednesday, the Atlanta Braves host the Cardinals in a matchup of faltering contenders. Adam Wainwright has had a great deal of success against the team that drafted him 10 years ago. He is a perfect 5-0 in five starts against Atlanta, having never allowed more than three earned runs. Derrek Lee, hitting .400 in his last five games, has only four hits in his last 26 at-bats against Wainwright.

Trivia Answer: Ned Yost, who took over as Kansas City Royals manager in May, has managed 1,063 games in the majors, but never brought his team to the postseason. Of course, part of the reason for that was his 2008 season in Milwaukee. Yost was fired with 12 games to go and his team tied for the Wild Card lead. Dale Sveum took over and the Milwaukee Brewers went just 7-5 but made the postseason.
Let's take a look at some notes from around baseball on Tuesday night:

• The New York Yankees hit five HR for the second time this season in their win at the Toronto Blue Jays. It's the first time the Yanks have hit five HR at Toronto since 2004.

JeterDerek Jeter hit his 10th HR, and now has 10+ HR and 10+ SB in 15 consecutive seasons. In MLB history (according to the Elias Sports Bureau), only Barry Bonds has a longer such streak. Bonds did this in 16 straight seasons from 1986 to 2001.

• The Chicago Cubs improved to 2-0 under Mike Quade with their win over the Washington Nationals. Alfonso Soriano smacked his 20th HR, giving him nine straight 20-HR seasons. That is tied for the third-longest active streak in baseball. Alex Rodriguez (15 straight season) and Albert Pujols (10) have the only two longer streaks.

• Also for the Cubs, Tyler Colvin hit his 19th HR. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, that is tied for the third-most HR by a rookie in Cubs history. Only Billy Williams (25) and Geovany Soto (23) have ever hit more. Ernie Banks is one of three others to also hit 19.

• The Pittsburgh Pirates knocked off the St. Louis Cardinals, 4-3. It's the second time in the last week that the Cardinals lost a one-run game, leaving the bases loaded with two outs in the ninth inning.

• The New York Mets topped the Florida Marlins with Luis Castillo's walk-off single. It's Castillo's seventh career walk-off hit (third with the Mets). It's just the third walk-off loss of the season for the Marlins (only the Yankees have fewer).

• The Oakland Athletics topped the Cleveland Indians, 5-0, as Gio Gonzalez pitched seven shutout innings. Athletics starters have tossed a franchise-record 16 consecutive quality starts. Gonzalez is 4-0 with a 0.89 ERA in five career starts vs the Indians.

• The Detroit Tigers knocked off the Kansas City Royals, 9-1. Detroit has now won five straight, outscoring its opponents 40-7 during this streak. Miguel Cabrera drove in his MLB-leading 104th run of the season, surpassing his total from last season.

• The Texas Rangers defeated the Minnesota Twins, 4-3. Josh Hamilton hit his 29th HR and has now driven in a run in five straight games for the fifth time in his career. Neftali Feliz notched his 32nd save, which is the fourth-most by a rookie since saves became an official stat in 1969.

Scott • The Chicago White Sox topped the Baltimore Orioles, but Luke Scott hit his 25th HR for Baltimore, matching the career high he set last season. He's the first Oriole with 25+ HR in back-to-back seasons since Miguel Tejada and Melvin Mora in 2004-05. His 13 HR since the All-Star Break are the most by anyone not named Jose Bautista.