The best baseball players born on Oct. 2

October 2nd, 2023

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 Oct. 2:

1) Maury Wills (1932)
The speedster made seven All-Star teams. Only four other players in baseball history born on this day have made even one. Wills led the National League in stolen bases for six straight years (starting in 1960) and led the Majors in steals for the final four years of that stretch, including his MVP season of 1962, when he swiped 104 bags. In addition to that MVP campaign (a year in which he won one of his two Gold Gloves), he finished third in the voting in 1965 and had two other top-10 finishes. Wills was a three-time World Series champion (1959, ’63, ’65). After he finished his playing career, he served as manager for the Mariners from 1980-81.

2) Earl Wilson (1934)
Wilson was the first Black pitcher to throw a no-hitter in the American League, achieving the feat in 1962 as a member of the Red Sox at Fenway Park. Not only did he toss the no-no, he also went deep in the same game (one of only four players in history to pull off that incredible combination). Wilson had an impressive career, finishing 121-109 with a career 3.69 ERA. He led the Majors with 22 wins as a Tiger in 1967, and the following year he helped Detroit to the 1968 World Series title.

3) Eddie Guardado (1970)
Appropriate dubbed “Everyday Eddie,” Guardado led the Majors with 83 appearances in 1996, one of nine seasons when he appeared in at least 60 games. He finished with 908 appearances, 24th on the all-time list. He was a two-time All-Star and led the AL with 45 saves in 2002.

4) Lance McCullers Jr. (1993)
McCullers is probably best known for throwing four shutout innings in Game 7 of the 2017 ALCS to lead the Astros to the World Series. In fact, in that performance, he threw 24 straight curveballs. He’s continued his strong career since that clutch outing, and had his best season in 2021, when he went 13-5 with a 3.16 ERA, finishing seventh in AL Cy Young voting.

5) Aaron Hicks (1989)
Known as a standout defender with a superb arm, Hicks' best year came in 2018, when he blasted 27 homers and posted an .833 OPS over a career-high 137 games for the Yankees. Hicks was hampered by injuries while spending parts of eight seasons with New York. He was let go by the Yankees in May of 2023, but Hicks went on to sign with the Orioles and helped Baltimore capture the '23 AL East title.

Want to see more baseball birthdays for Oct. 2? Find the complete list on Baseball Reference.