Monday, June 23, 2008

Off-Day Puzzle #4: Loney to Meet His Maker?

Welcome to another off-day puzzle. For today's edition, you'll find below a short, fictional anecdote involving our favorite 1st baseman, James Loney. Please read it through carefully, use your imagination, and try to pick up on the clues that will help you help him escape harm!

Premise: Dodger 1st baseman James Loney (known as "King" James to beloved reader Karina, among others) lives amongst his family and friends in a safe, comfortable neighborhood on the south side of town. One evening he gets the munchies and ill-advisedly decides to head to the dangerous north side of town (perhaps in search of a White Castle?). Dressed in his freshly-pressed home whites, James sets out on foot. Unfortunately, his travels soon take him through unfamiliar territory, and he eventually finds himself in an open and seemingly deserted field. He anxiously trudges on but does not know in which direction to head. He is lost and alone on the north side of town, and nightfall is quickly approaching.

James then hears footsteps in the distance. He looks around and notices four men each several yards away in different directions. All four are clearly watching him, and seem to be slowly moving closer. James tries to retain his cool. He quickens his pace but refrains from running, and discreetly observes his pursuers, nervously glancing at each.

The first thing James notices about them is that while the four men are following him, each seems to be moving in a distinct and indirect path toward him. James then notices that each is carrying a baseball bat. Not a good sign. Then, as the men inch closer, he realizes something else: each man is wearing the hideous alternate home uniform of the arch-rival Giants. Hmmm...very strange, and definitely bad news. It then dawns on him - each man is a former Giants player! He recognizes the four thugs as:

  • Rich Robertson, SF Giants '66-'71;
  • Bob Knepper, SF Giants '76-'80,'89-'90;
  • Luis Quiñones, SF Giants '86;
  • John Patterson, SF Giants '92-'95;

This realization only increases James' fear. He continues his way through the field but before he knows it, the four men have surrounded him and have closed to within arms' length, one at each corner. They are clearly intent on doing him serious harm. James knows he is in mortal danger, particularly when both Patterson and Quiñones raise their bats to strike him down...

Here is a visual representation of James' situation:

Question: Loney must act immediately or likely face an untimely death. His options are:

    A) Run north, between Patterson and Quiñones;
    B) Run south, between Robertson and Knepper;
    C) Run east, between Knepper and Quiñones;
    D) Run west, between Robertson and Patterson;
    E) Attack Patterson;
    F) Attack Knepper;
    G) Attack Quiñones;
    H) Attack Robertson;

What should James do?

Note: Hints available upon request. And as always, if you think you might have the solution but aren't sure, it means you probably don't have the solution. Enjoy!

_________________________________

UPDATES:

Hint #1 (11:43am PT): I chose those four ex-Giants for a specific reason, but not related to their positions played, years played, and/or stats. You won't need www.baseball-reference.com to solve this one.

Hints #2 & 3 (1:08pm PT): Technically, the existence of the compass is not required to pick the right answer, but it should help you verify that your reasoning is correct. And there's a reason I picked King James to be the protagonist rather than another Dodger.

Hint #4 (2:16pm PT): You don't have to research anything about the players involved, but you do have to think outside the boxes.

Solution: See here.

Additional Note: As mentioned, if you solve the puzzle correctly, you will be certain of it. If so, please don't post the explanation and spoil it for the rest...please instead post that you think you solved it and send us an email with your reasoning. Thanks!

45 comments:

Mike Scioscia's tragic illness said...

Would the fact that two of the players have different first names on the graphic as opposed to the explanation be a subtle hint.. or just a confusing typo?

Eric Karros said...

Thanks MSTI, it was a typo. I've corrected it.

cigarcow said...

Well here's an easy one. Just run South, away from the guys swinging the bats and towards the two guys with no arms. I'm all proud of myself today.

Eric Karros said...

Ha...while I can't deny there's a certain logic to that answer cigarcow, in the context of this puzzle that move would result in Loney's demise.

karina said...

I'm taking lunch break to try to resolve this:

The guys with the bats are Luis Quinones, who played 2B, 3B and SS;John Patterson, who was a 2B.

The other ones were pitchers, so maybe they only want King James to play catch with them?

karina said...

or they want Loney to play 1B?

karina said...

It can't be, maybe i'm as cold as Sweeney's bat.

karina said...

Hmmm, i guess i've found a fonetic pattern similar to James Loney's nickname "King", which i guess it's a key for the emphasis in that word.

Eric Karros said...

Karina, your first two comments are indeed as cold as Sweeney's bat. Your 4th comment is slightly less cold but still not particularly warm.

I will post a hint shortly...

karina said...

does it have to do with option C?

cigarcow said...

He totally runs south and attacks "Dave Robertson" - not only is he armless, but he's a liar! Just give me my prize.

Eric Karros said...

I updated post with a hint. If it's not a good enough hint let me know and I'll post another one.

karina, why do you think it's C? (please email us your reply)

cigar - that is a combo B) and H) answer which is invalid. BTW Robertson and Knepper aren't armless, they're just keeping their arms inside their jerseys because it's cold. Which by the way is irrelevant to the puzzle. This is starting to head off-topic, but I'm curious - why is Robertson a liar?

cigarcow said...

Dave Robertson lies because he claims to have played from '66-'71 but he actually played from '12-'22. Wait, who's Rich Robertson? ...hmmm.... I found a clue! Oh, typo. Well my theories are dashed. No, I'm sticking with choice H for now. Robertson is like 100 years old! Arms or no arms, Jimmy can take him.

Eric Karros said...

Ugh I thought I corrected the first name typos. I have now. But just for the record, the typos have no impact on the puzzle.

Dusto Magnifico said...

I choose Patterson because in your little drawing he is looking at Quinones. (gotta catch them off guard).

karina said...

Eric, i just emailed you with my very raw guess, does it relate with the word maker in the title?

Eric Karros said...

Sorry Dusto. Patterson is looking right at Loney, he just happens to be slightly cross-eyed.

Karina, the title of the post is irrelevant. And I just read your email and it's not correct - you are sort of going down the right path but not exactly.

I will update the post with another hint when I get back from this meeting I have to go to right now...

Dusto Magnifico said...

C. Run east between Luis Quinones and Bob Knepper because their names aren't in the bible.

Dodgers Digest said...

This is a tricky little puzzle. I'd like to see "King" James attack all of them. Those look like fierce baseball bobbleheads.

Anyways, I have highlighted your post on my blog: http://dodgersdigest.blogspot.com/2008/06/around-dodgers-blogosphere.html

Hopefully, some of my readers will be intrigued to join in the fun and solve this puzzle.

Dusto Magnifico said...

B) Run south, between Robertson and Knepper;

because they didn't raise their bats.

Eric Karros said...

Sorry Dusto, puzzle has no biblical overtones, and cigarcow already suggested running away from the bats.

And thanks dodger digest for the linkage.

I updated post with another hint.

Quad, where are you buddy?

karina said...

multiple options, Eric?

1) C
2) F
3) G

karina said...

am i hot as Loney's bat, lukewarm as Kent's or Sweeney cold?

Eric Karros said...

Hey Karina - well, it's hard to say how hot/cold you are without knowing your reasoning for picking those options...but I'm guessing you don't have the right solution or the story would make sense and you'd be pretty certain of only one answer. But pls send an email with your thinking...

karina said...

i already emailed you!

Eric Karros said...

Oops sorry Karina, didn't see it. I just replied to your email...

karina said...

Option G?

QuadSevens said...

I'm still here EK. I've been thinking about this puzzle for a while now. I'm sure an answer will come to me soon.

Eric Karros said...

Just FYI everyone, we have received one correct answer and explanation via email. So yes, it is solvable!

karina said...

To me, correct answer is G. I emailed you, Eric.

(off i need to go to some fancy commitment i don't feel like going)

QuadSevens said...

I'm going to say my answer is option H. I'll email my reasoning.

Eric Karros said...

Sorry Karina and Quad, I read both your emails and your reasonings/solutions aren't correct...

Eric Karros said...

FYI I will be incommunicado for awhile, will check back in later. But if you get the right answer, you won't really even have to confirm you're correct, as you will know you are. And the story will make more sense.

fanerman said...

I guessed G and emailed my answer.

berkowit28 said...

How am I supposed to know where to email my answer? (Yes, I think I solved it.) I know this site seems to be for insiders, but is even a puzzle just for the insiders?

It's hard enough even to get my comments listed here. It asks for my username (which it knows, suggests, and prints) but actually wants my email address (which I always forget).

berkowit28 said...

OK, I found the Contact Us link. Sending my answer now.

Eric Karros said...

Sorry Faner and Berko, I read your emails but your answers are not correct.

BTW, so far we've received 2 correct solutions...

Dusto Magnifico said...

Is mine correct?...

I sent an email.

Benjamin Pratt said...

I think I have it, but you email like is broken.

Eric Karros said...

No, sorry Dusto.

Anyhow folks, thanks for participating. I am signing off for the day. Think it through tonight and I'll check emails/comments early tomorrow morning before posting the solution.

Hope you enjoyed the off-day!

Benjamin Pratt said...

Sorry, I typed the email in manually and it worked fine.

Eric Karros said...

Congrats Benjamin, you got it! Ok, this time I'm really signing off. See you all tomorrow!

Rob said...

"White Castle"? Don't you mean, "In-N-Out Burger"?

Eric Karros said...

Point well taken, Rob. It's been a long time since I've lived in California...

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I am afraid that this statement is not correct"
He looks around and notices four men each several yards away in different directions. ."elaborate this.Thank you.
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