Luke Appling was voted the most popular player in Chicago White Sox history in a 1969 fan poll. Chicago fans know their baseball - Appling was a steady shortstop who led the league in throwing assists four times in the 1930s, but he was never the flashiest player on his team.
Appling held down the shortstop position with the White Sox for nearly twenty years. In that time, he established major league marks for shortstops for games played and double plays, and American League records for putouts and assists; all were later broken by another White Sox player, Luis Aparicio. In spite of his everyday play, he acquired the epithet "Old Aches & Pains" through 20 years of complaining about his various physical ailments, the condition of the infield ("I swear, that park must have been built on a junkyard!" As it turned out, he was right), and salary disputes with General Manager Harry Grabiner.
Appling had a great batting eye. Legend has it that he once fouled off 17 straight pitches in a single at-bat. His batting average dipped below .300 on only four occasions, and his 1,302 career walks is 25th all-time.
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