Happy Birthday–September 20

Chuck Dressen (1894)
Zeke Bonura (1908)
Tom Tresh (1938)
Rich Morales (1943)
Roric Harrison (1946)
Pete Hamm (1947)
Mickey Klutts (1954)
Pat Bangtson (1964)
Jason Bay (1978)
Ian Desmond (1985)
Steve Lombardozzi (1988)

I believe this is the only date on which there are only two players to have been in the big leagues for ten seasons.

Pat Bangtson was drafted by the Twins in 1987 and was in their system through 1991, reaching as high as AAA. He then worked as an assistant coach at Ohio State from 1992-2005, when he became the head coach at the University of Akron.

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

Right-hander Roric Edward Harrison appeared in nine games for the Twins in 1978. He was born in Los Angeles, went to high school in Westchester, California, and was signed by the Houston Astros as a free agent in 1965. He appears to have battled both injuries and ineffectiveness, as well as wildness, in the minors. In 1969, he was traded to the Seattle Pilots in a trade that involved Jim Bouton, and was traded to Baltimore just before the 1971 season. Something clicked with Harrison in 1971, as he suddenly went 15-5 with a 2.81 ERA and 1.14 WHIP for AAA Rochester. He was a very effective relief pitcher for the Orioles in 1972, but was traded to Atlanta after the season in a multi-player deal that included Pat Dobson, Davey Johnson, Johnny Oates, and Earl Williams. Converted to starting, he was much less effective for the Braves, posting ERAs mostly in the mid-to-upper fours. Still, Harrison stayed in the majors with Atlanta through June of 1975, when he was traded to Cleveland for Blue Moon Odom. Placed in the Indians rotation, he continued to be fairly mediocre, and was on the move again after the season, traded to St. Louis. Harrison was in the Cardinals, Tigers, and Pirates organizations during the next couple of years, and was eventually signed by the Twins as a free agent in late April of 1978. He was fairly mediocre in AAA Toledo, too, but still made nine relief appearances for the Twins, giving up 18 hits and 10 runs in 12 innings for an ERA of 7.50 and a WHIP of 2.42. His career came to an end after that season. Roric Harrison was the last American League pitcher to hit a home run in a regular season game prior to the designated hitter rule. He was named after the first king of Ireland. In 2001, Roric Harrison was inducted into the Rochester Red Wings Hall of Fame. At last report, Roric Harrison was the vice president for business development for Lexicon Relocation in Irvine, California.

Right-hander Peter Whitfield Hamm was with the Twins from 1970-1971. He was born in Buffalo, went to high school in Soquel, California, and was chosen by the Twins in the ninth round of the secondary phase of the 1967 draft out of Stanford. His minor league numbers look good, but it took him three years to get out of Class A. Hamm had a very good 1970 split between AA and AAA, and was briefly promoted to the Twins that year. He appeared in 10 games as a 22-year-old, going 0-2 with a 5.51 ERA. Hamm had another fine year at AAA Portland in 1971, giving up about a hit per inning with excellent control. He appeared in 13 games for the Twins that year, 8 of them starts, but did not do well, going 2-4 with a 6.75 ERA. Still, he was only 23, and after a year and a half of good pitching at AAA would seem to have been a promising young pitcher. Apparently, however, nobody who mattered thought so. The Twins sold Hamm to the White Sox in February of 1972. He never pitched for them, and instead 1973 found him pitching for Trois Rivieres, the AA affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds. Hamm dominated at that level, winning 17 games with a 2.30 ERA and a 0.98 WHIP, but it was his last year in organized baseball. No information is readily available regarding why he did not get more of a chance, why his career came to an abrupt end, or what he might be doing now.

Leave a Reply