For every baseball legend, there’s dozens of major leaguers who have complete un-notable careers. In the case of these guys, those careers lasted just one solitary game.
To have some fun in these baseball-less times, let’s take a look at some of these players that had their single game as a member of the Yankees and see just how remarkable or unremarkable their careers were.
Homer and his brother Tommy, a pitcher, both had one-year major league careers with the then-Highlanders in 1912, although Tommy lasted a bit longer. Homer made his lone appearance in the final game of the season, coming in as a defensive replacement behind the plate late in play. The game ended before he had a chance to get an at bat. The win over the Senators was also the final game for his brother. However, they didn’t get a chance to play together as Tommy, who as mentioned was a pitcher, pinch-ran and never took the mound.
Hanson was and still is the youngest ever person to play for the Yankees. He was 17 years and 178 days old when he came in as defensive replacement in a 1913 game. It should be noted that he has been moved to first base from catcher, where he played his lone game, to fill in a gap. He was one of six different catchers the Yankees used that season, as they were just throwing everything they could at the wall to find someone to play there. Not surprisingly, that team went 57-94.
Like Thompson, Batten was a one-game wonder who played his late in the 1912 season. Unlike Thompson, he actually got the chance to hit. Batten got the start at second base and went 0-3 before being pinch-hit for late in a 4-2 loss to the Athletics.
After his playing career, Verdi became a long-time minor league manager. His last season leading a team was in 1995 when he was the manager of the Sioux Falls Canaries of the independent Northern League. Before that, he had one game as a defensive replacement at shortstop in 1953. He actually only ended up playing one half inning, as he played short in the bottom of the sixth, and was pinch-hit for in the top of the seventh. That experience was probably disappointing for him, but not as bad as the time he was accidentally shot while being a third base coach.
You have to go all the way back to 1905 to find Cooney’s one game in the majors. He got the start at third and hit seventh in a Highlanders’ game against the St. Louis Browns. He went 0-3 before returning to the minors, where he would play for another 15 seasons.
The Yankees likely signed McClure to be a pitcher, as he had an impressive career on the mound at Amherst College. However, that’s not where they used him. He was sent in to play outfield after starter Harry Wolter broke his finger trying to catch a Ty Cobb hit. McClure got one at bat, and struck out, before Charlie Hemphill — an actual outfielder who had been in the clubhouse, but just wasn’t ready when Wolter’s injury happened — was dressed and able to come into the game. McClure never got to pitch or play anywhere else in the majors again.
Like Cooney, Fallon is a one-gamer from 1905. He pinch-ran late in the final inning of a loss to the Athletics and then never played again. He’s getting slotted in the outfield as that’s where he played in the minors.
Jimenez is the most recent player to make this team, as his lone game came in 1964. He also had probably the most successful career of anyone else, going 2-6 in the final game of the regular season. He returned to triple-A to start the next season, but had a bit of a down season from his previous couple minor league campaigns. He played more than a decade after that in the minors and the Mexican League.
Barnes may have played just one game, but he is tied for the all-time OBP record. Barnes made one plate appearance in an April 1926 game and drew a walk.
O’Connor is one of 87 pitchers to have thrown a complete game in their only major league game. That may seem like a lot, but all but 23 of them came before the 20th century, and no one has done it since 1944. O’Connor allowed 11 runs on 15 hits, but was allowed to throw eight innings in a loss to the Red Sox in 1908.