A ‘Cup of Coffee’ or an ‘Espresso shot?’

Did you know … there are only two Major League Baseball position players from South Carolina who appeared in a single game. Who are they?

In baseball circles you will occasionally hear the phrase “cup of coffee,” when referring to a ballplayer. A “cup of coffee” refers to a player who has played a short period of time in the major leagues. In context, that could be a short stint during a season, or over a career, and could apply to a player who has played in a single game to a player who was a late season roster expansion promotion.

In this instance, SABR-SC has culled our list of the 197 former and active Major League Baseball players from the state to identify and recognize position players who played in one game. Based on that criteria there were two players: Roxy Snipes and Red Barbary.

We are uncertain whether Snipes and Barbary qualify to be a member of the “cup of coffee” category, or is an “espresso shot” a more accurate description!? You decide. 

ROXY SNIPES

Marion, South Carolina native Roxy Snipes appeared in one game and recorded one at-bat in 1923 as a member of the Chicago White Sox. According to Baseball-Reference, on July 15, 1923, Snipes pinch hit for White Sox pitcher Red Faber. Neither Retrosheet or Baseball-Reference has any further play-by-play details to identify how Snipes was retired.

RED BARBARY

Simpsonville, South Carolina native Red Barbary had a similar experience to Snipes two decades later. Barbary, then a member of Washington Senators, made his only major league plate appearance on May 22, 1943. Barbary pinch hit for catcher Jake Early and was retired. No additional details are available of the what happened during the at-bat.

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