Who are the best players born on each day of the year? We have a list for every day on the calendar.
Here’s a subjective ranking of the top five for July 17:
Inducted into the Hall of Fame, Boudreau has a remarkable legacy as a player, manager and broadcaster. A cornerstone of the Cleveland franchise from 1938-50, the shortstop was the American League MVP in 1948 after he batted .355 with 18 home runs and 106 RBIs while leading the club to a World Series championship. He led the AL in fielding percentage eight times and became his team’s player-manager at only 24 years old in 1942. He also managed the Red Sox, Athletics and finally, the Cubs – where he also became a beloved TV broadcaster.
McMillan enjoyed a 16-season career from 1951-66 with the Reds, Milwaukee Braves and Mets. Dubbed “Mr. Shortstop” because he was one of the best at the position during the 1950s with Cincinnati, McMillan won the first three Gold Glove Awards given to shortstops (1957-59). He was also part of fielding a then-record 129 double plays in 1954. Although he was a two-time All-Star, the Reds recorded only two winning seasons during his 10 seasons there.
Kessinger spent almost the entirety of his 16-year Major League career in the city of Chicago – first with the Cubs from 1964-75, during which time he was a six-time All-Star and two-time Gold Glove-winning shortstop. After a brief tenure in St. Louis, Kessinger played his final three seasons with the White Sox and managed the club briefly in 1979.
Thigpen went to his lone All-Star Game in 1990, a season when he recorded a then-record 57 saves with a 1.83 ERA as closer for the White Sox. Over nine seasons from 1986-94 for Chicago, the Phillies and Mariners, the right-hander was 31-36 with a 3.43 ERA and 201 saves.
Stone was the first woman to play professional baseball regularly in a major men’s professional baseball league. She played for various clubs from 1946 until ’53, when she joined the Indianapolis Clowns of the Negro American League and replaced the legendary Hank Aaron at second base. There, she reportedly got a hit against the great pitcher Satchel Paige. In ’54 she played for the Kansas City Monarchs before retiring with a .243 career average. In 1990, Stone was included in the “Women in Baseball” and “Negro League Baseball” exhibits at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.
Want to see more baseball birthdays for July 17? Find the complete list on Baseball Reference.