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The Oklahoman's 50 greatest baseball players from Oklahoma

Modified: July 14, 2008 at 6:11 am •  Published: July 14, 2008
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1. Mickey Mantle, of, Baseball Hall of Famer
Note/quote: "On two legs, Mickey Mantle would have been the greatest ballplayer who ever lived,” said Hall of Fame second baseman Nellie Fox.

Oklahoma connection: Born in Spavinaw, raised in Commerce.

2. Warren Spahn, p, Baseball Hall of Famer
Note/quote: "Home plate is 17 inches wide, but I ignore the middle 12. I pitch to the 2½ inches on each side,” he said.

Oklahoma connection: Lived in Hartshorne, died in Broken Arrow.

3. Johnny Bench, c, Baseball Hall of Famer
Note/quote: "I don't want to embarrass any other catcher by comparing him with Johnny Bench,” manager Sparky Anderson said.

Oklahoma connection: Born in Oklahoma City, raised in Binger.

4. Carl Hubbell, p, Baseball Hall of Famer
Note/quote: "Are you trying to insult Hubbell, coming up here with a bat?” catcher Gabby Hartnett told a batter.

Oklahoma connection: Raised in Meeker.

5. Paul "Big Poison” Waner, of, Baseball Hall of Famer
Note/quote: "They can run like scalded cats,” a rival manager said of the Waner brothers.

Oklahoma connection: Born in Harrah.

6. Willie Stargell, 1b, Baseball Hall of Famer
Note/quote: "He doesn't just hit pitchers; he takes away their dignity,” Don Sutton said of Stargell.

Oklahoma connection: Born in Earlsboro.

7. Dizzy Dean, p, Baseball Hall of Famer
Note/quote: "Son, what kind of pitch would you like to miss?” Ol' Diz once asked a batter from the pitcher's mound.

Oklahoma connection: Lived in Spaulding.

8. Ferguson Jenkins, p, Baseball Hall of Famer
Note/quote: Had six straight 20-win seasons en route to 284 wins in 19 seasons.

Oklahoma connection: Lived in Guthrie.

9. Bullet Joe Rogan, p, Baseball Hall of Famer
Note/quote: "The greatest pitcher that ever threw a ball,” said Negro League teammate Tank Carr.

Oklahoma connection: Born in Oklahoma City.

10. Iron Man Joe McGinnity, p, Baseball Hall of Famer
Note/quote: He won 246 games in 10 seasons and had a 2.66 career ERA.

Oklahoma connection: Lived in McAlester and Krebs.

11. Bobby Murcer, of
Note/quote: "You decide you'll wait for your pitch. Then, as the ball starts toward the plate, you think about your stance; and then you think about your swing; and then you realize the ball that went past you for a strike was your pitch,” he said.

Oklahoma connection: Born in Oklahoma City, lived in Edmond.

12. Willie Wells, ss, Baseball Hall of Famer
Note/quote: "In the field he could do everything Ozzie Smith did... and he was a much better hitter than Ozzie,” said Hall of Famer Monte Irvin.

Oklahoma connection: Lived in Oklahoma City.

13. Lloyd "Little Poison” Waner, of, Baseball Hall of Famer
Note/quote: "A fan in Ebbets Field is supposed to have complained, ‘Every time you look up those Waner boys are on base. It's always the little poison on third and the big poison on foist,” wrote sportswriter Red Smith.

Oklahoma connection: Born in Harrah, died in Oklahoma City.

14. Carl Mays, p
Note/quote: Best known as the submarine pitcher who beaned and killed Ray Chapman, but he also had 207 wins and 2.92 career ERA.

Oklahoma connection: Lived in Kingfisher.

15. Allie Reynolds, p
Note/quote: Yankees manager Casey Stengel said "Super Chief” was "the best pitcher at starting and relieving I've ever managed...He's two pitchers rolled into one.”

Oklahoma connection: Born in Bethany, died in Oklahoma City.

16. Joe Carter, of
Note/quote: His exuberance was contagious after he hit a walk-off, three-run homer to win the 1993 World Series.

Oklahoma connection: Born in Oklahoma City.

17. Darrell Porter, c
Note/quote: In 1979 he became only the second catcher to have 100 or more RBIs, runs and walks in a season.

Oklahoma connection: Lived in Oklahoma City and Broken Arrow.

18. Bob Johnson, of
Note/quote: "Indian Bob” was a seven-time American League All-Star who had nine 20-homer and eight 100-RBI seasons.

Oklahoma connection: Born in Pryor.

19. Alvin Dark, ss-mgr
Note/quote: "Every player should be accorded the privilege of at least one season with the Chicago Cubs. That's baseball as it should be played, in God's own sunshine. And that's really living,” he said.

Oklahoma connection: Born in Comanche.

20. Harlond Clift, 3b
Note/quote: Maybe the most underrated third baseman in big league history. The first 3B to hit 30 homers and first to start 50 double plays in a season.

Oklahoma connection: Born in El Reno.

21. Mickey Tettleton, c-dh
Note/quote: Patient, power-hitting catcher and DH ranks among the most famous athletes from Southeast High School, with Bobby Murcer and Darrell Porter.

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