Here’s a fun little tool available from Baseball-Reference.com. The Oracle of Baseball is very much like the idea of Six Degrees of Separation (or Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon, if you will), except it focuses on baseball players! You can type in the names of two baseball players, and the site will spit back a chain of teammates that connect them to one another. For example, one pair of players I tried out was Dizzy Dean and Sammy Sosa, and result came back as follows:
Dizzy Dean played with Phil Cavarretta for the 1938 Chicago Cubs
Phil Cavarretta played with Minnie Minoso for the 1954 Chicago White Sox
Minnie Minoso played with Richard Dotson for the 1980 Chicago White Sox
Richard Dotson played with Sammy Sosa for the 1989 Chicago White Sox
I’ve tried several pairs, and so far, the longest chain I’ve found was a mere two links longer than the one above (Fred Merkle and Alex Gordon). It’s really quite stunning how interconnected the baseball world really is.
Here’s the link, if you wanna try it out yourself: http://www.baseball-reference.com/oracle/. Have fun!