Secondbaseman and the Intentional Walk

Taking a look at the Intentional Base on Balls with a twist.  Here is an all-time top ten list of secondbaseman ranked by most intentional base on balls in a single season.

    1 Ted Sizemore       21 1977
    2 Jose Lind          19 1990
    3 Rod Carew          18 1975
    4 Glenn Hubbard      17 1987
    5 Ron Oester         17 1985
    6 Ron Oester         16 1986
    7 Ted Kubiak         16 1970
    8 Bill Mazeroski     16 1962
    9 Phil Garner        15 1979
   10 Bill Mazeroski     15 1960

Unlike the complete IBB single-season leaders list which is dominated by sluggers (read: Barry Bonds), those on the secondbaseman top ten list do not curry their intentional walks from fear.

Nay, with the exception of Rod Carew, these second sackers, earned their intentional ball-fours because they primarily hit eighth in the lineup on a National League team.  Hitting before the pitcher got them their IBBs.

Phil Garner is an interesting case.  While he played a full season (150 games, 549 AB), Only 60 of his games were dedicated to the 8th spot.  The other lineup spots (2nd, 6th, and 7th) were pretty evenly distributed.  I’m pretty familiar with the 79 Pirates lineup and can’t think of another hitter that a team would walk Garner to get to (SS Foli was a decent hitter).

My only guess was that Garner must have gotten most of his 15 IBB in his 60 games as the 8th place hitter.  Perhaps the Pirates pitchers’ hitting was that poor.

One Response to “Secondbaseman and the Intentional Walk”

  1. Your recollection of the 1979 Bucs seems accurate. Scrap Iron must’ve gotten most of his IBB’s while batting 8th, though Garner wasn’t a bad hitter. Tim Foli, a lifetime .251 batter, hit .291 (his career best) with Pittsburgh in 1979. Crazy Horse was a fastball hitter, who feasted, batting #2 behind speedster Omar Moreno, Foli was a great handler of the bat, good at the H & R, striking out only 14 times in 587 at bats with the Pirates.

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