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In the MLB, is someone known as being the ultimate journeyman?

Sports Asked on May 28, 2021

I’m thinking there must be a player whose career consisted of a collection of single seasons, each with a different team.

I know there are relief pitchers like this. I’d be more interested in learning about a position player.

I tried to search for players who fit this mold on Baseball Reference. One that came to mind was Arthur Rhodes. His career was front loaded with a long stint at Seattle, and the second half saw him hop around.

I’m sure there’s got to be someone who is known as being the ultimate journeyman.

One Answer

I've never heard that term applied to a single player. That's unlikely to be a fan-favorite, because you're looking for someone that was never with any team very long and wasn't good enough to be kept around.

My vote would be for Matt Stairs. Although he did play for Oakland for 5 consecutive years, all the other teams were max 2 years. 19 seasons in the majors, 12 different teams.

Matt also holds the MLB record for pinch hit homers with 23.

Kenny Lofton played for 11 different teams, but was such a force for Cleveland during his prime that I don't think he fits your request. There's probably several players with only one year with each team (or less), but that didn't hold up for long and are quite forgettable.

I remember Paul Bako during his stint with the Astros. He played for 11 teams, no more than 2 consecutive years with any, but I think backup catcher may be similar in feel to relief pitcher.

Answered by BowlOfRed on May 28, 2021

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