Top five MLB players born on Leap Day


February 29 is rather special to me. On a personal note, it is my mom’s birthday, and it only happens once every four years. Here are the five best Major League Baseball players all-time born on February 29, also known as Leap Day.

5) Bill Long 

A native of Cincinnati, Ohio, Bill Long is turning 64 years old today. A pitcher, Long was used as a starter and reliever. He was with the Chicago White Sox from 1985 to 1990, the Chicago Cubs in 1990, and the Montreal Expos in 1991. In 159 games, Long had a record of 27 wins and 27 losses with an earned run average of 4.37. He also had eight complete games, two shutouts, and nine saves, with 247 strikeouts and a WHIP (walks and hits per innings pitched) of 1.37.

4) Steve Mingori

A native of Kansas City, Missouri, Mingori was born on February 29, 1944 and was 64 when he died in 2008. A reliever, he pitched for the Cleveland Indians from 1970 to 1973, and the Kansas City Royals from 1973 to 1979. In 385 games, Mingori had a record of 18 wins and 33 losses with an earned run average of 3.03. In 584 2/3 innings, he had 42 saves, 329 strikeouts and a WHIP of 1.32.

3) Terrence Long

An outfielder from Montgomery, Alabama, Terrence Long is 48 years old today. Terrence Long, who is not related to Bill Long, played eight seasons from 1999 to 2006. He was with the New York Mets (1999), the Oakland Athletics (2000 to 2003), the San Diego Padres (2004), the Kansas City Royals (2005), and the New York Yankees (2006). In 890 games, 3325 plate appearances, and 3068 at bats, Long batted .269 with 69 home runs and 376 runs batted in. He also scored 428 runs, had 824 hits, 166 doubles, 21 triples, 27 stolen bases, 227 walks, 1239 total bases, and 23 sacrifice flies, to go along with an on base percentage of .318 and a slugging percentage of .404. In 2000 with the Athletics, Long was a finalist for the American League Rookie of the Year, but lost out to Seattle Mariners pitcher Kazuhiro Sasaki of Sendai, Japan.

2) Pepper Martin

An outfielder and third baseman from Temple, Oklahoma, Martin was born on February 29, 1904 before passing away at the age of 61 in 1965. He played 13 seasons with the St. Louis Cardinals from 1928 to 1944. In 1189 games, 4117 at bats and 4525 plate appearances, Martin batted .298 with 59 home runs and 501 runs batted in. He also scored 756 runs and had 1227 hits, 270 doubles, 75 triples, 146 stolen bases, 369 walks, 1824 total bases, and 22 sacrifice bunts, to go along with an on base percentage of .358 and a slugging percentage of .456. Martin was a four-time All-Star with the Cardinals in 1933, 1934, 1935 and 1937, and led the National League in runs scored in 1933 with 122. Thrice Martin led the National League in stolen bases. He had 26 in 1933, 23 in 1934 and 23 in 1936. Twice Martin won a World Series with the Cardinals. The first time in 1931 and the second time in 1934.

1) Al Rosen

The corner infielder from Spartanburg, South Carolina was born on February 29, 1924 and died on March 13, 2015. He played 10 seasons with the Cleveland Indians from 1947 to 1956. In 1044 games, 4374 plate appearances and 3725 at bats, Rosen batted .285 with 192 home runs and 717 runs batted in. He also scored 603 runs, and had 1063 hits, 165 doubles, 20 triples, 39 stolen bases, 1844 total bases, nine sacrifice bunts, 587 walks, an on base percentage of .384 and a slugging percentage of .495. Rosen was a four-time All-Star for four straight seasons from 1952 to 1955, won a World Series in 1948, led the American League in home runs twice (37 in 1950 and 43 in 1953), runs batted in twice (105 in 1952 and 145 in 1953), runs (115 in 1953), slugging percentage (.613 in 1953), and total bases twice (297 in 1952 and 367 in 1953). In 1953, Rosen was named the American League MVP.


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