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Published: Monday, 9/3/2001

So long, Skeldon: The big name game at Skeldon Stadium

Famous players who have taken the field at Ned Skeldon Stadium in its 37 years of use.

  • HALL OF FAMERS: Eleven members of the Baseball Hall of Fame played or managed at Skeldon Stadium, including two who wore Hens' uniforms: Kirby Puckett, who played here in 1984, and Jim Bunning, who managed the Hens in 1974 and 1975.

  • OTHER HALL OF FAMERS : Johnny Bench (Buffalo, 1966-67); Carlton Fisk (Louisville, 1971); Bob Lemon (Richmond manager, 1975); Phil Niekro (Richmond, 1966); Jim Palmer (Rochester, 1967-68); Frank Robinson (Rochester manager, 1978); Nolan Ryan (Jacksonville, 1967); Tom Seaver (Jacksonville, 1966); Earl Weaver (Rochester manager, 1966-67).

  • OTHER STARS: Cal Ripken Jr. (Rochester), Wade Boggs (Pawtucket), Derek Jeter (Columbus), Carlos Delgado (Syracuse), Deion Sanders (Louisville), Chipper Jones (Richmond), Mike Mussina (Rochester), Andy Pettitte (Columbus), Curt Schilling (Rochester), Tom Glavine (Richmond), Shawn Green (Syracuse), Orlando Hernandez (Columbus) and Ryan Klesko (Richmond).

  • LOCAL PLAYERS: The Tigers' current roster includes 21 players who have played at Skeldon, which makes sense when you consider the Hens are Detroit's top farm club. The 26-man roster includes nine pitchers, three catchers, six infielders and three outfielders who have played at Skeldon. What may surprise some is that the Indians' current roster features eight players who have played at Skeldon, including two who wore a Mud Hens uniform: Travis Fryman and manager Charlie Manuel.

  • CURRENT MANAGERS: Speaking of Manuel, he is one of 11 major league managers who either played or managed at Skeldon. Besides Manuel, that list includes Dusty Baker, Bob Baylor, Bruce Bochy, Bobby Cox, Art Howe, Tom Kelly, Tony LaRussa, Jerry Manuel, Tony Muser and Bobby Valentine. The two Manuels and Kelly are the only ones to wear a Hens' uniform.

  • FORMER HENS: Dave Campbell, the ESPN baseball analyst, Dick Drago, Kirk Gibson, Willie Hernandez, Mike Marshall, Lance Parrish, Dick Radatz, Jim Rooker, Frank Viola and Gary Ward.

  • ALMOST FAMOUS: Pedro Martinez played at Skeldon in 1998 and Ted Williams played there in 1993. But it wasn't that Pedro or "Splendid Splinter." The Pedro who pitched for the Hens was a lefty, and the real Ted Williams was 75 at the time the Hens' Ted Williams played here. Billy Beane was an outfielder for the Hens in 1986 and 1988; Billy Bean was an outfielder here from 1987-89. That's right, there were two players whose names were pronounced the same on the Hens' roster in 1988.



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