#41 - Charlie Gehringer
Let’s get the weirdness out of the way at the start: Charlie Gheringer batted left handed and threw with his right. Yeah, that’s unconventional, but one cannot argue the results on offense or defense!
Gehringer was a beast at the plate compiling a .320 lifetime batting average and during his run had seven seasons with more than 200 hits! Over the life of his career, Gehringer had career totals of 2,839 hits and 574 doubles, he led the Tigers to three American League pennants (1934, 1935, and 1940) and one World Series Championship (1935). Gehringer hit .379 in the 1934 World Series, and .375 in the 1935 Series. Gehringer was the American League batting champion in 1937 with a .371 average and was also named the American League’s Most Valuable Player that same year.
Defiensively, Gehringer was no slouch and is regarded as one of the best-fielding second basemen in history, having led all American League second basemen in fielding percentage and assists seven times. With 7,068 assists, Gehringer ranks second highest in major league history for a second baseman, and also collected 5,369 putouts as a second baseman (the 6th highest total for a second baseman) and 1,444 double plays (the 7th highest total for a second baseman). He recorded a career .976 fielding percentage.
Known for his consistency as a hitter and fielder, Gehringer was given the nickname “The Mechanical Man” by Yankee pitcher Lefty Gomez. Teammate Doc Cramer quipped: “You wind him up Opening Day and forget him.”