‘Hidden between the lines / The unsung hero’

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The headline for today’s entry is a couplet from the lyrics of an old Meat Puppets song called “The Mighty Zero,” which is about that most intriguing of numerals. For some reason I’ve been thinking about zero lately, so I decided to compile a list players who’ve worn zero or double-zero in the major pro sports. Here’s what I have so far (those with asterisks wore double-zero; all others wore zero):

MLB: Don Baylor, A’s*; Bobby Bonds, Cardinals*; Jack Clark, Padres*; Tony Clark, Mets*; Paul Dade, Indians*; Oscar Gamble, White Sox; Curtis Goodwin, Reds*; Cliff Johnson, Blue Jays*; Jeffrey Leonard, Giants, Brewers, and Mariners*; Curtis Leskanic, Brewers*; Terry McDaniel, Mets; Oddibe McDowell, Rangers; Bobo Newsom, Senators*; Omar Olivares, Cardinals*; Al Oliver, multiple teams; Rey Ordoñez, Mets; Junior Ortiz, multiple teams; Joe Page, Pirates*; Franklin Stubbs, Brewers; Brandon Watson, Nats and Reds*; Rick White, Phillies and Reds*.

[There are also several other double-zero MLBers mentioned in Jack Looney's book, Now Batting, Number...: Jerry Hairston (at the end of his career with the White Sox), Rudy Seanez (for five games with Cleveland in 1991), and Jim Poole (a few games with Texas in ’91). But none of these are confirmed by baseball-reference.com, which lists uniform numbers for every MLB player. My experience over the years is that Looney's book has more errors than baseball-reference.com, but both are definitely fallible. For now, I'm treating these three players' double-zero status as unconfirmed.]

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