The best baseball players born on Oct. 26

October 26th, 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. 26:

1) Toby Harrah (1948)
The four-time All-Star enjoyed a 17-year Major League career, the majority of it split between the Texas Rangers and Cleveland Indians. He had a good eye at the plate, leading the AL in walks in 1977. He also displayed some power, hitting 20 or more home runs five times. Harrah is mostly remembered as a third baseman, but he played the majority of his early career at shortstop with the Rangers. He finished up his playing career with Texas in 1986 and was inducted into the club’s Hall of Fame in 2009.

2) Steve Rogers (1949)
A five-time NL All-Star who started for the Senior Circuit in the 1982 Midsummer Classic, Rogers played all 13 years of his Major League career with the Montreal Expos. A tremendous competitor with outstanding stuff, Rogers is the franchise’s all-time wins leader with 158. He made nine Opening Day starts, the most of any pitcher during the Expos’ existence. Rogers was a success right from the start, posting a 1.31 ERA in his first 14 career starts in 1973. He finished his rookie season 10-5 with a 1.54 ERA and was named to the Topps All-Star Rookie Team.

3) Mike Hargrove (1949)
The “Human Rain Delay” was drafted by the Texas Rangers in 1972 and he earned AL Rookie of the Year honors after hitting .313 with 10 homers in 1974. He spent five seasons with Cleveland, where he was known for his patient approach at the plate, which earned him the league lead in walks twice. Hargrove was famous for taking a lot of pitches and stepping out of the batter’s box a lot, which earned him his nickname. He finished his playing career with a .290 batting average. After his playing days, Hargrove managed the Indians for nine seasons, leading them to the World Series twice. He also managed in Baltimore and Seattle.

4) Kid Gleason (1866)
While often remembered as the manager of the Black Sox in 1919, Gleason played 22 seasons and earned 138 wins as a pitcher for eight years. When he wasn’t pitching, he primarily played second base and he had nearly 2,000 career hits as a position player. After his playing career Gleason served as a coach and manager. He even umpired a few games in the National League in 1890 and 1892.

5) Snuffy Stirnweiss (1918)
Stirnweiss was a versatile infielder who won the 1945 AL batting title (.309). After debuting in 1943 with the Yankees, he batted .319 in 154 games the next season and finished just eight points behind the AL batting champion, Lou Boudreau. Stirnweiss led the league in runs, hits, triples, slugging, stolen bases and finished fourth in the MVP balloting. After winning the batting title, he never again hit above .261 in a season and finished his 10-year Major League career with a .268 average.

Others of note:
Francisco Liriano (1983)

Liriano pitched 14 seasons in the Majors before announcing his retirement in January 2022. He made exactly 300 starts, won 112 games and had a career 4.51 ERA. He was once viewed as the heir-apparent to Twins ace Johan Santana, however elbow problems and eventual Tommy John surgery derailed him. He spent time with six clubs in his career, last appearing with the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2019.

Gil Heredia (1965)
Heredia played 10 years in the Majors, appearing in 267 games and making 128 starts. He finished with a 57-51 career record and a 4.46 ERA, pitching for the Giants, Expos, Rangers and A’s.

Want to see more baseball birthdays for Oct. 26? Find the complete list on Baseball Reference.