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Jayson Stark
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Wednesday, October 23
Updated: October 24, 4:35 AM ET
World Series Useless Information Dept.

By Jayson Stark

SAN FRANCISCO -- Thanks to Game 4 of the World Series, we've got some more useless information to try your imagination.

  • Let's put all these Barry Bonds walks in some kind of perspective. Bonds now has walked more times in the postseason (23) than two Angels regulars -- Adam (3-Homer) Kennedy (19) and Bengie Molina (15) -- walked all season. Had the Twins made it, we could have brought up Cristian Guzman, who walked 17 times this year in 623 at-bats. But we won't even mention it.

  • Then you have Bonds' 11 intentional walks this postseason. That's more intentional walks just in October than Mike (4-Homer) Cameron (9), Preston Wilson (9) or Bonds' old teammate, Robby Thompson (8) have -- or had -- in their whole careers.

  • Mostly, what Bonds has done in this World Series is hit home runs and walk down to first base. But in Game 3, he actually struck out on three pitches. So how often has that happened? Not much. The San Francisco Chronicle's Ray Ratto reports only three pitchers all season whiffed the home-run king on three pitches -- Curt Schilling, Javier Vazquez and left-handed relief executioner Mike Myers.

  • But the most fascinating Bonds stat of the postseason is this: In games in which he hasn't homered, the Giants are 7-0. In games in which he has, they're 2-5.

  • Benito Santiago in this postseason after intentional walks to Bonds: 5-for-10, 2 HR, 6 RBIs.

  • The Angels have to be one of the most mixed-up teams in postseason history. They have one pitcher with no regular-season wins but five postseason wins (Francisco Rodriguez). Then, on Wednesday, along came John Lackey to become the fifth player since 1979 to get a World Series hit before he got a regular-season hit.

    The others, courtesy of the Elias Sports Bureau's Ken Hirdt: Mike Moore in 1989, Al Leiter (in relief) in 1993, Chad Ogea in 1997 and Kenny Rogers in 1996. Of that group, only Moore joins Lackey as men with no regular-season hits in their careers but one World Series hit.

  • As long as we're talking pitcher hitting, why stop there? Since Kirk Rueter also got a hit in this game (even though it traveled only about 50 feet), that makes this the fourth World Series game since 1979 in which pitchers on both teams got a hit. The others:

    Game 4, 1993 -- Leiter and Tommy Greene.
    Game 3, 1998 -- David Cone and Sterling Hitchcock.
    Game 6, 2001 -- Andy Pettitte and Randy Johnson.

  • But we need to give those AL pitchers credit. They're hot. They went 0 for 10 years between 1979 (Tim Stoddard) and 1989 (Mike Moore). But since then, they've combined for 10 hits in the last 13 World Series -- three by Cone (two in 1992, one in 1998), two by Ogea in 1997, one each by Moore, Leiter, Rogers, Pettitte and Lackey.

  • Lackey was the fifth pitcher in World Series history to start a game on his birthday. The first four went 2-1, with one no-decision. Johnny Podres won Game 3 in 1955, beating the Yankees. Tim Belcher won Game 4 in 1988, beating the A's But Cy Young blew out Brickyard Kennedy's candles in Game 5, 1903 -- in the fifth World Series game ever. And Ed Figueroa got a no-decision against the Dodgers in Game 4, 1978.

  • Lackey also missed his chance to become the fourth pitcher to give up a World Series home run on his birthday. The three who didn't pass up that chance, according to the Sultan of Swat Stats, SABR's David Vincent: Figueroa (to Reggie Smith) in 1978, Pirates reliever Bob Moose (to Don Buford) in Game 1, 1971, and Podres (to Mickey Mantle) in 1955.

  • Over a six-game span from the start of the NLCS through Game 1 of this World Series, opposing hitters went 4-for-47 (.085) against Giants pitchers with runners in scoring position. In the next two games alone, the Angels got three times that many hits -- going 12-for-32 (.375).

  • The Angels started the night on a pace to challenge all sorts of postseason hitting records. They were batting .335 for the postseason, with a .546 slugging percentage. They were averaging eight runs a game. The highest batting average by any team in any postseason is .338, by the 1960 Yankees. Since the playoffs expanded to a third round in 1995, the highest slugging percentage by any team is .531, by the 1999 Red Sox (in 10 games). Those Red Sox also scored the most runs per game (6.8).

  • In our Game 3 edition of Useless Information, we documented the World Series troubles of Giants reliever Jay Witasick. But some of our readers pointed out that Witasick has actually fared worse than we'd previously thought.

    Counting last year's nine-run disaster as a Yankee, Witasick has faced 20 hitters, given up 13 hits and walked two. But one of the five hitters he retired still reached base -- on a strikeout-wild pitch. And one of his five career outs came when the Yankees threw out a runner at the plate.

  • Finally, the appearance by Livan Hernandez in Game 3 made it six consecutive years that a Hernandez brother has appeared in the World Series. And SABR's David Vincent reports that's a new brother record. The four sets of brothers with four or more consecutive years:

    6 Livan & Orlando Hernandez 1997-2002
    5 Clete & Ken Boyer 1960-1964
    4 Virgil & Jesse Barnes 1921-1924
    4 Bob & Irish Meusel 1921-1924

    Jayson Stark is a senior writer for ESPN.com.

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