Happy Birthday–September 10

Barney Pelty (1880)
High Pockets Kelly (1895)
Sammy Hale (1896)
Ted Kluszewski (1924)
Roger Maris (1934)
Len Whitehouse (1957)
Randy Johnson (1963)
Riccardo Ingram (1966)
Danys Baez (1977)
Joey Votto (1983)
Anthony Swarzak (1985)
Neil Walker (1985)
Paul Goldschmidt (1987)

We would also like to wish a very happy birthday to the Philosofer's eldest child.

Left-hander Leonard Joseph Whitehouse played for the Twins from 1983-1985. He was born in Burlington, Vermont and was signed by the Texas Rangers as a free agent in 1976. He did not pitch very well in the minors, having only one season (1981 in AA Wichita) in which his ERA was under 4.00. He was left-handed, however, and so he got a September call-up with the Rangers in 1981, and after spending 1982 in AAA Denver he was traded to the Twins for John Pacella. Whitehouse was with the Twins for a little over two seasons, appearing in 60 games in 1983, 30 in 1984, and five in 1985. He actually seemed to pitch better in the big-leagues than he did in the minors: in his two full seasons with the Twins he was 9-3 with 3 saves and a 3.86 ERA. Whitehouse pitched poorly in 1985, however, both in his short stint with the Twins and in AAA Toledo, and was released. He pitched for AA Glens Falls in the Tigers organization in 1986 before calling it a career. At last report, Len Whitehouse was coaching high school and American Legion baseball in his home town of Burlington, Vermont.  He was an assistant coach and did furniture upholstery for Saint Michael's College for some time, but does not appear to be one of their coaches any longer. It is, of course, entirely possible that he has retired.

Outfielder Riccardo Benay Ingram got eight at-bats with the Twins in 1985. He was born in Douglas, Georgia, went to Georgia Tech, and was drafted by the Detroit Tigers in the fourth round in 1987. Ingram spent two years in Class A and two more in AA. In this third year at AAA Toledo, 1994, he got a brief trial with the Tigers, going 5- for-23 (.217) with 2 RBIs. Ingram became a minor-league free agent and signed with the Twins organization for 1995. Ingram had his best season that year at AAA Salt Lake, batting .348 with 43 doubles and 12 home runs. He earned another short stint in the majors, going 1-for-8 in four games with the Twins. He again became a free agent after the season, and signed with the Padres organization, spending 1996 in AAA Las Vegas. After retiring as a player, Riccardo Ingram was a coach and manager in the Twins’ organization. Riccardo Ingram is a member of the Georgia Tech Hall of Fame, starring in both baseball and football while at the school.  He passed away from cancer on March 31, 2015 in Lilburn, Georgia.

Right-hander Anthony Ray Swarzak pitched for the Twins in 2009 and from 2011-14. He was born in Ft. Lauderdale, went to high school in Davie, Florida, and was drafted by the Twins in the second round in 2004. He pitched pretty well at every minor league stop with the exception of his stint in New Britain in 2008, where he went 3-8 with a 5.67 ERA; however, he redeemed himself by going 5-0 with a 1.80 ERA in seven starts in Rochester. Swarzak was suspended for fifty games in 2007 for violating baseball’s drug policy–reportedly, he had used marijuana. Swarzak again pitched well in Rochester in 2009, and earned a trial in Minnesota. He did not do well there, going 3-7 with a 6.25 ERA in 59 innings. He had an awful season in Rochester in 2010, going 5-12, 6.21, 1.62 WHIP in 111.2 innings.  He bounced back in 2011, doing reasonably well in Rochester and also reasonably well in Minnesota after being called up to the Twins in mid-May.  2012 was his first full season in the majors.  He had a fine year as a long reliever for the Twins in 2013.  He had a poor year in 2014, however, and was allowed to become a free agent after the season.  As a Twin he was 16-24, 4.48, although his numbers are substantially better as a reliever than as a starter.  He signed with Cleveland and made ten appearances with them, but was released on June 15 and went to Korea, where he did not pitch very well.  He came back to the United States in 2016, signed with the Yankees, started the season in AAA, came up to the big club in early June, and stayed there until going on the disabled list in late August with rotator cuff tendinitis.  A free agent after the season, he signed with the White Sox for 2017 and pitched very well, well enough that Milwaukee traded for him to help in their playoff drive.  He signed with the Mets for 2018 but that did not go well.  He missed time with injuries and did not do well when he was able to pitch.  He was traded to Seattle during the off-season as part of the deal that brought Robinson Cano to the Mets, and was traded again in mid-May to Atlanta.  He has done a good job for the Braves in very short relief--fourteen of his thirty-six appearances have been for less than an inning.   He turns thirty-four today.  The life of a middle reliever is seldom secure, but there's no reason to think Anthony Swarzak can't pitch in the majors for at least a couple more seasons.

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