Strange, Unusual Sports Facts from the NHL, NFL, MLB, and NBA

SportsLifer@sportsliferCorrespondent IIAugust 7, 2009

TILFORD, ENGLAND - AUGUST 05:  A close-up of the golf ball of one of the Welsh players marked with Wales during the morning's play at the Boys Home Internationals at Hankley Common Golf Club on August 5, 2009 in Tilford, England.  (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)

Joe Pepitone and John Lennon had something in common. They were both born on October 9, 1940, Pepitone in Brooklyn and Lennon in Liverpool, England.

Ten strange and unusual sports factoids that may interest only me:

  • Former New York Yankee first baseman Joe Pepitone was born on October 9, 1940, the same birthdate as late Beatle John Lennon. I don’t know exactly what this means, but perhaps it explains some of the countercultural activities by Pepi, the first ballplayer to use a hair dryer in the clubhouse.
  • It takes 3,000 cows to supply the NFL with enough leather for a year’s supply of footballs.
  • The only two days of the year in which there are no professional sports games—MLB, NBA, NHL, or NFL—are the day before and the day after the Baseball All-Star Game.
  • Deion Sanders has played in both the World Series, in 1992 with the Atlanta Braves, and Super Bowl—1994, Super Bowl XXIX, San Francisco 49ers, 1995, Super Bowl XXX, Dallas Cowboys. The Braves lost the World Series in his only appearance, but both the 49ers and the Cowboys won the Super Bowl.
  • The Olympic rings cover every flag in the world. Yellow, green, red, black, and blue were selected because at least one of those five colors appears in every flag in the world.
  • The Boston Celtics, a charter NBA franchise, have never had a player lead the league in scoring.
  • The Stanley Cup, emblematic of ice Hockey supremacy in North America, was donated in 1893 by Canada’s then-Governor General, Frederick Arthur, Lord Stanley of Preston. Originally awarded to honor Canada’s top amateur team, it eventually became the championship trophy of the NHL. Stanley Cup playoffs have been held continuously since 1894, although in the 1918-1919 season the finals were halted by a worldwide influenza epidemic. Oddly, Lord Stanley himself never saw a Stanley Cup game.
  • Who’s the only player to play in three straight World Series for three different teams? Don Baylor: 1986 Boston Red Sox, 1987 Minnesota Twins, 1988 Oakland A’s.
  • In 1960, Yankees second baseman Bobby Richardson hit one home run and knocked in 26 runs in 150 games and 460 at-bats. That year against the Pittsburgh Pirates, he set a World Series record with 12 RBI, including a grand slam. He became the only player from a losing team ever to be voted World Series MVP, despite the exploits of Bucs second baseman, whose home run won the Series for Pittsburgh.
  • There are 336 dimples on a regulation golf ball.

slash iconYour sports. Delivered.

Enjoy our content? Join our newsletter to get the latest in sports news delivered straight to your inbox!