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. 7:
1) Mookie Betts (1992)
One of the best all-around talents in the game, Betts was selected by the Red Sox in the fifth round of the 2011 MLB Draft, arrived to The Show just three years later and has proceeded to crush big league pitching to the tune of a .296/.373/.518 slash line over his first eight seasons. Betts entered 2022 as a five-time All-Star and a five-time Gold Glove winner in right field. His best year came in 2018, when he led the Majors in runs scored, batting average and slugging percentage, produced a 30/30 season and claimed the AL MVP Award -- all while leading the Red Sox to a World Series championship. After being traded by the Sox to the Dodgers on Feb. 10, 2020, Betts signed a massive 12-year extension with Los Angeles before the season began and then helped lead the club to a World Series title. Fun fact: Betts is also an accomplished bowler who has rolled numerous perfect 300 games in his life. He competed on the PBA Tour in the 2017 World Series of Bowling, throwing a 300 game during the qualifying rounds, and teamed with PBA Hall of Famer Tommy Jones to win the CP3 Celebrity Invitational in ’19.
2) Chuck Klein (1904)
The only Hall of Famer born on Oct. 7, Klein had a 17-year Major League career spent mostly with the Phillies that also featured short stints with the Cubs and Pirates. After a solid 1928 rookie season, when he played in only 64 games for Philadelphia, Klein delivered one of the greatest five-year stretches in baseball history and was referred to as the “Babe Ruth of the National League.” From 1929-33, Klein slashed .359/.414/.636 with 658 runs scored, 232 doubles, 180 home runs and 693 RBIs, winning four home run titles, an NL MVP Award in 1932 and a Triple Crown in ’33. Klein made his mark in the record books during this stretch. His Major League-high 445 total bases in 1930 are the fourth most in a single season all-time, behind only Babe Ruth (457 in 1921), Rogers Hornsby (450 in 1922) and Lou Gehrig (447 in 1927). Klein also set the modern NL record with 158 runs scored and the modern Major League record with 44 outfield assists in his remarkable 1930 season. In 1932, Klein led his league in both home runs (38) and stolen bases (20), becoming the third player in the modern era to accomplish this feat. Nobody has done it since.
3) Evan Longoria (1985)
The 2008 unanimous American League Rookie of the Year, Longoria’s solid 14-year career through the 2021 season has featured three All-Star appearances and three Gold Glove Awards. Longoria was selected third overall by the Rays in the 2006 MLB Draft and spent the first 10 seasons of his career with Tampa Bay before he was traded to the Giants on Dec. 20, 2017. The third baseman holds numerous Rays franchise records, including home runs (261), doubles (338), runs scored (780), RBIs (892) and total bases (2,630). Longoria delivered one of the most iconic moments of the 2011 campaign, belting a walk-off home run against the Yankees that just cleared the left-field wall at Tropicana Field on the final day of the regular season to vault the Rays into the playoffs as the AL Wild Card winners.
4) Jose Cardenal (1943)
A native of Cuba, Cardenal made his Major League debut at just 19 and played for nine teams over the course of his 18-year career. The outfielder’s best seasons came with the Cubs from 1972-77, as Cardenal slashed .296/.363/.424 for Chicago while receiving down-ballot NL MVP votes in 1972 and ’73. Cardenal reached the World Series with the Royals in the final year of his career in 1980, but Kansas City fell to Philadelphia in six games. After his playing days were over, Cardenal served as a coach for four teams from 1993-2003, winning three World Series as the Yankees’ first-base coach in ’96, ’98 and ’99.
5) Jesús Sánchez (1997)
Sánchez made a solid impression on the Marlins in his 2021 rookie season, hitting .251 with an .808 OPS and 14 home runs in just 64 games and 227 at-bats. The Dominican native was signed by the Rays as an amateur free agent in 2014, and the Marlins acquired Sánchez along with Ryne Stanek in the trade that sent Nick Anderson and Trevor Richards to Tampa Bay on July 31, 2019. Sánchez, who spent most of his time in right field in 2021, showed why Miami is excited about his future by hitting eight of his 14 homers in a strong September. He finished a double shy of the cycle in a loss to the Braves on Sept. 12. Three days later, Sánchez notched the first multihomer game of his career with two blasts in a win over the Nationals, including a go-ahead two-run shot in the ninth inning.
Others of note:
Alex Cobb (1987)
A fourth-round Draft pick of the Rays in 2006, Cobb has been a solid starting pitcher for three teams over his 10-year career from 2011-21. He posted a 3.50 ERA over six seasons with Tampa Bay, although he missed the entire 2015 campaign and nearly all of ’16 while recovering from Tommy John surgery. After three years with the Orioles and one season with the Angels, Cobb signed a two-year deal with the Giants on Nov. 30, 2021.
Kris Medlen (1985)
Medlen had a promising start to his career with the Braves, but two Tommy John surgeries got in the way and resulted in lost seasons in 2011 and ’14. In 2012, Medlen appeared in 50 games (12 starts), posting a miniscule 1.57 ERA, and he went 9-0 with a 0.97 ERA in the 12 starts on the way to making history: The Braves won a Major League-record 23 straight games started by Medlen from 2010-12. Medlen won a World Series with the Royals in 2015 and retired after the 2018 season.
Brickyard Kennedy (1867)
We had to include William Park Kennedy on this list because of his fantastic "Brickyard" nickname. He was a pretty solid pitcher, too. The right-hander posted a 34.9 WAR during his 12-year career from 1892-1903, and he won 20-plus games four times with Brooklyn. The "Brickyard" nickname was a reference to his place of employment during the offseason, but Kennedy actually had another nickname: He was known as “Roaring Bill” because of his foghorn voice and the way he yelled at umpires, opposing batters and even his teammates.
Want to see more baseball birthdays for Oct. 7? Find the complete list on Baseball Reference.