MLB history: the top 5 players born on Christmas Day

WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 30: The 95th annual National Christmas Tree Lighting is held by the National Park Service at the White House Ellipse in Washington, D.C., November 30, 2017. The Beach Boys, Wynonna, The Texas Tenors, Craig Campbell were among the artists who provided the entertainment. (Photo by Astrid Riecken/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 30: The 95th annual National Christmas Tree Lighting is held by the National Park Service at the White House Ellipse in Washington, D.C., November 30, 2017. The Beach Boys, Wynonna, The Texas Tenors, Craig Campbell were among the artists who provided the entertainment. (Photo by Astrid Riecken/Getty Images) /
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MLB History
WASHINGTON, DC – NOVEMBER 30: The 95th annual National Christmas Tree Lighting is held by the National Park Service at the White House Ellipse in Washington, D.C., November 30, 2017. The Beach Boys, Wynonna, The Texas Tenors, Craig Campbell were among the artists who provided the entertainment. (Photo by Astrid Riecken/Getty Images) /

In MLB history, Christmas Day is one of the most prestigious days to celebrate one’s birthday. Whos is the best player of all-time to have the birthday?

While Christmas is supposed to celebrate the birthday of some non-baseball playing fellow, the players in MLB history that have been born on the day is a pretty extensive list.

Overall impressive list

Many days on the calendar have multiple excellent players on their list, but few have the list of players as good as Christmas Day. We’ll explore the top 5 players from the day in just a second, but here are some interesting facts on players born on Christmas Day:

  • Three Hall of Famers were born on this day
  • Ten played at least 10 seasons in the major leagues
  • Eight made at least one All-Star game (three played in 5 or more)
  • Four hit more than 50 home runs
  • Four stole more than 100 bases in their career
  • Six won more than 50 games as a pitcher
  • Five had more than 500 career strikeouts as a pitcher

Now, let’s start with the list, beginning with a tightly contested spot at #5.

5. Ned Garver, RHP

Garver gets the nod here over Jo-Jo Moore, who was a left fielder who could hit for good average and played on a very good New York Giants team in the 1930s through the early 1940s, playing in 3 World Series and making 6 All-Star teams.

Garver pitched for 14 seasons in the major leagues, pitching for some rough teams in his career, including the St. Louis Browns, the early 1950s Detroit Tigers, and the late 1950s Kansas City Athletics. That led to a losing career record, going 129-157 over his career.

Garver was a workhorse, however, leading the league in both 1950 and 1951 with 22 and 24 complete games, respectively. Of course, as many of the pitchers in that era, he wasn’t built for that kind of arm abuse, and he had multiple seasons where he was unable to give a full season worth of innings.

Garver would finish with an even 881 walks and strikeouts, which isn’t exactly a dominant starter, but his ability to come back multiple times to the mound from injury that cost him a significant part of a season is what earned him this spot on this list, with a career bWAR of 43.2.