Can You Identify the Player from Just the Photo on His Baseball Card?

By: Jacqueline Samaroo
Image: Youtube via Baseball Card Corner

About This Quiz

It's going, going ... gone! Home run!

The modern version of baseball has its roots planted firmly in North America, and as a result of this, the sport is very important in the United States (and also Canada and Mexico). In fact, baseball is widely considered by many to be the (unofficial) national sport of the United States. Baseball cards are perfect for this challenging quiz, since we've been able to get a great combination of fairly recent players, as well as players who were throwing pitches when the game was still young!

Major League Baseball (often simply shortened to "MLB") is actually the oldest of the four major professional sports leagues in the US and Canada. This means that the MLB is the grandfather of: the National Football League (NFL), the National Basketball Association (NBA), and the National Hockey League (NHL).

The 30 teams in Major League Baseball are split between the National League and the American League, with each league having 15 teams each.

So, are you ready to take a swing at whatever this quiz throws your way? Can you hit your answers for a home run? Step up to the plate and let's see what you're made of!

Don Mattingly is the current manager if the Miami Marlins, but he also previously managed the Los Angeles Dodgers for five years. Don Mattingly had a 14-year career playing with the New York Yankees, where he earned the nicknames "Donnie Baseball" and “The Hit Man”.

Tom Seaver is a retired MLB pitcher who pitched for four different teams between 1967 and 1986. However, Tom Terrific (as he is lovingly nicknamed) is most celebrated for his time with the New York Mets and his contribution to their 1969 World Championship.

Eddie Mathews is widely regarded by many to be one of the best third basemen of all time. Not only was he an All-Star for 9 seasons but he also played 17 seasons for the Boston Braves, Milwaukee Braves, Atlanta Braves, Houston Astros and Detroit Tigers.

Jackie Robinson (Jack Roosevelt Robinson) is notable for being the recipient for the very first Rookie of the Year Award and also for being an All-Star for six years. Robinson was the first African American to play in the MLB after decades of racial segregation.

Nolan Ryan is notable for having played in a major league record 27 seasons. Nolan Ryan was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1999 and has been a pitcher for the New York Mets, California Angels, Houston Astros and Texas Rangers.

Ted Williams (Theodore Samuel Williams) played his entire 19-year MLB career as a left fielder for the Boston Red Sox from 1939 to 1960. He is regarded by many to be one of the greatest baseball players ever and has several nicknames, including: "The Greatest Hitter Who Ever Lived", "Teddy Ballgame", and “The Kid”.

Walter Johnson was an MLB pitcher who played his entire 21-year baseball career for the Washington Senators. Johnson is notable for the numerous pitching records that he set, some of which still remain unbroken to this day.

Babe Ruth is not only one of the greatest baseball players of all time, but he is widely hailed as one of the most influential sports icons in American history. The “Sultan of Swat" had a career that spanned a whopping 22 seasons and was one of the first players to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Satchel Paige was a pitcher who became one of the most successful players in Negro League baseball and a dominant force in the MLB as well. He is notable for being the first player who had played in the Negro Leagues to pitch in the World Series, in 1948.

Kirby Puckett was an MLB player who spent his entire professional career as a center fielder for the Minnesota Twins. He is the Minnesota Twins’ all-time leader in career hits, runs, doubles and total bases.

Andy Pafko was a professional Major League Baseball player who spent his career with the Chicago Cubs (1943–51), Brooklyn Dodgers (1951–52), and Milwaukee Braves (1953–59). He is notable for being card #1 in the 1952 Topps baseball card set.

Tony Gwynn – also known as “Mr. Padre” – was a professional baseball right fielder who played 20 seasons in Major League Baseball for the San Diego Padres. He was a 15-time All-Star and recieved seven Silver Slugger Awards and five Gold Glove Awards.

Willie Mays was a Major League Baseball center fielder who played most of his 22-season-long career with the San Francisco Giants. He won two National League MVP awards and ended his career with 660 home runs - currently fifth of all-time.

Lou Gehrig was a professional MLB player who was renowned for his durability and for his skill as a hitter and earned the nickname “The Iron Horse”. He was the first MLB player to have his uniform number (number 4) retired by a team.

Mickey Mantle was a professional baseball player who spent his entire Major League Baseball career with the New York Yankees as a center fielder and first baseman. Mantle is widely regarded by many as the greatest switch hitter in baseball history.

Honus Wagner was an American baseball shortstop who played almost all of his 21 seasons in Major League Baseball (from 1897 to 1917) for the Pittsburgh Pirates. He is well remembered for having won eight batting titles, tied for the most in National League history with Tony Gwynn.

Reggie Jackson is a former professional baseball right fielder who played 21 seasons for the Oakland Athletics, Baltimore Orioles, New York Yankees and California Angels. He is remembered for helping Oakland win five consecutive American League West divisional pennants, three consecutive American League pennants and three consecutive World Series titles.

Derek Jeter is a retired professional Major League Baseball player who had a 20-year career with the New York Yankees. He is the all-time career leader for the Yankees in hits (3,465), doubles (544), games played (2,747), stolen bases (358), times on base (4,716), plate appearances (12,602) and at bats (11,195).

Stan Musial – also known as “Stan the Man” – was a baseball outfielder and first baseman for the St. Louis Cardinals. He is considered to be one of the greatest and most consistent hitters in baseball history and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1969.

Barry Bonds is widely hailed by many to be one of the greatest baseball players of all time. He is currently the holder of several ML hitting records, including most home runs in a single season, most career walks and most career home runs.

Bob Gibson is a retired MLB pitcher who played 17 seasons for the St. Louis Cardinals. He was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1981 and the St. Louis Cardinals Hall of Fame in 2014.

Sandy Koufax was a former Major League Baseball pitcher who played 12 seasons for the Los Angeles Dodgers. In 1972, he became the youngest player ever elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame, at 36.

Wade Boggs is a former professional baseball third baseman who spent most of his career with the Boston Red Sox. However, he is notably remembered for his time with the New York Yankees, with whom he won the 1996 World Series.

Ernie Banks – also known as "Mr. Cub" and "Mr. Sunshine" – was a professional baseball player who played in the MLB for the Chicago Cubs from 1953 to 1971. He was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1977 and was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom for his contribution to sports.

Ken Griffey Jr. is a former professional baseball outfielder who played 22 years in Major League Baseball. He spent most of his professional career with the Seattle Mariners and the Cincinnati Reds. He is ranked sixth in terms of MLB home runs and was a 13-time All-Star.

Cal Ripken Jr. is a former MLB baseball shortstop and third baseman whose prolific career earned him the nickname “The Iron Man”. He played 21 seasons for the Baltimore Orioles from 1981 to 2001 and was a 19-time All-Star.

George Brett is a retired baseball third baseman and designated hitter who spent 21 years of his Major League Baseball career playing for the Kansas City Royals. His 3,154 career hits are 16th of all-time and the most by any third baseman in major league history.

Greg Maddux – also known as the "Mad Dog" and "The Professor" – is a former Major League Baseball pitcher. He is remembered for his time with the Atlanta Braves (with whom he won the 1995 World Series) and the Chicago Cubs.

Sherry Magee was a left fielder in Major League Baseball. In his 16-season career he played for the Philadelphia Phillies (1904–1914), Boston Braves (1915–1917) and Cincinnati Reds (1917–1919).

Eddie Plank (born Edward Stewart Plank) – also known as Gettysburg Eddie – was a professional baseball player who served primarily as a pitcher for the Philadelphia Athletics (1901 through 1914), the St. Louis Terriers (1915), and the St. Louis Browns (1916 and 1917). He was the first left-handed pitcher to win 200 games and then 300 games.

Manny Ramirez is a former Major League Baseball player who now currently plays for the Kōchi Fighting Dogs of the Shikoku Island League Plus. In the MLB he was a nine-time Silver Slugger and was one of 25 players to hit 500 career home runs.

Thurman Munson was a Major League Baseball catcher who played his entire 11-year professional baseball career for the New York Yankees. He is notable for being the only Yankee to win both the Rookie of the Year and Most Valuable Player awards.

Cap Anson is a polarizing figure in the history of Major League Baseball. On one hand he played for a record 27 consecutive seasons and is regarded by many as one of the greatest (if not the greatest) players of his time. On the other hand, he also played a major role in establishing the racial segregation in professional baseball.

Ty Cobb – also known as the Georgia Peach – was a Major League Baseball outfielder who played for the Detroit Tigers for 22 seasons. He holds several records, including his combined total of 4,065 runs scored and runs batted in, which is still to this day the highest ever produced by any major league player.

Also known as “Big Mac," Mark McGwire is a former professional baseball player in Major League Baseball who now currently serves as a bench coach for the San Diego Padres. His MLB career lasted from 1986 to 2001, playing for both the Oakland Athletics and the St. Louis Cardinals.

Napoleon Lajoie – also known as “The Frenchman” – was a professional baseball second baseman and player-manager in Major League Baseball. His career spanned several teams, including the Philadelphia Phillies, Philadelphia Athletics and Cleveland Naps.

Pete Rose – also known as “Charlie Hustle” – is a former professional baseball player and manager in Major League Baseball. His playing career started with the Cincinnati Reds from 1963 to 1978 and ended with them from 1984 to 1986; between then from 1979 to 1984 he played for both the Philadelphia Phillies and the Montreal Expos.

Ozzie Smith is a former baseball shortstop who played for two Major League Baseball teams, the San Diego Padres and the St. Louis Cardinals. His defensive skills earned him the nickname “The Wizard” from his admirers.

Cy Young was a Major League Baseball pitcher who had a 22-season baseball career from 1890 to 1911. He is the current holder of the record for most Major League Baseball career wins, with 511.

Carl Yastrzemski – also simply referred to as “Yaz” – is a former Major League Baseball player who had a notable 23-year career, which he spent entirely with the Boston Red Sox. He is an 18-time All-Star and has earned seven Gold Gloves.

Joe Jackson (born Joseph Jefferson Jackson) is a Major League Baseball player who is remembered primarily for his 1917 Word Series win and his alleged association with the Black Sox Scandal (a conspiracy to related to match fixing of the 1919 World Series).

Albert Pujols (José Alberto Pujols Alcántara) is a professional first baseman who has played for the St. Louis Cardinals in the past and currently plays for the Los Angeles Angels. He has made ten All-Star appearances and has two World Series championships, one in 2006 and the other in 2011.

Joe Doyle (born Judd Bruce Doyle) earned himself the nickname “Slow Joe Doyle” due to the fact that he would take long periods of stalling time in-between pitches. He spent most of his professional MLB career with the New York Highlanders.

Dwight Gooden – also known lovingly as “Dr. K” – is a former pitcher. He has a career that spanned 430 games over 16 seasons and played for several teams, including the New York Yankees, the New York Mets and the Cleveland Indians.

Hank Aaron is a now-retired Major League Baseball Player whose prolific career earned him the nicknames; "Hammer" and "Hammerin' Hank". He is currently the senior vice president of the Atlanta Braves, who he previously played 21 seasons for. He held the MLB record for career home runs for 33 years, and still holds several other offensive records.

Darryl Strawberry is a former Major League Baseball right fielder who had a celebrated 17-year professional career. He is one of only five Major League Baseball players to hit two pinch-hit grand slams in the same season.

Roberto Clemente was a right fielder who played for the Pittsburgh Pirates for 18 seasons and was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1973. He was notable for his charity work in Latin America and the Caribbean; he died in a plane crash on his way to deliver aid to earthquake victims in Nicaragua.

Christy Mathewson was a Major league Baseball pitcher who is primarily remembered for his prolific pitching career with the New York Giants for 17 seasons. He was one of the first five players to be elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Bo Jackson is not only a former baseball player but also a former football player as well; playing eight years in Major League Baseball and four years in the NFL. In fact, he is the first athlete to be named an All-Star in both sports.

Rickey Henderson is a retired baseball left fielder who had an extensive MLB career from 1979 to 2003, during which he played for nine teams. He currently holds the major league records for career stolen bases, runs, unintentional walks and leadoff home runs.

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