Friday, July 18, 2008

Off-Day Puzzle #6: Solution

Congratulations to steve, Eric Karros, and fanerman for taking win, place, and show positions respectively; loney fan and jose also stuck the landing.

Torre is using the common mnemonic used to order the nine planets in the Solar System (revised in August 2006 to exclude Pluto, but I didn't want to get into a long discussion about dwarf planets, especially with the non-dwarf-in-both-dimensions Andruw Jones in the lineup). The initials of the players' last names match the order of the names of the nine planets, ranked by distance from the sun.

As such, since we know the slots for Maza (1), Van Slyke (2) [given in the final hint], Ethier (3), Martin (4), and Jones (5), the total lineup would slot as follows:

Maza (Mercury)
Van Slyke (Venus)
Ethier (Earth)
Martin (Mars)
Jones (Jupiter)
Stults (Saturn)
New (Neptune)
Park (Pluto)

There is no one in the Dodgers' organization with a last name starting with "U" to correspond with Uranus, so Kemp must be traded to the Marlins for Dan Uggla, who bats seventh. And believe me, though we could Uggla's home runs (though not his ASG errors!), it would be just like Torre to slot Uggla seventh anyway despite his proficiency at the plate.


QuadSevens said...

I knew I was going to kick myself for not getting the solution earlier! I even kept thinking to myself, "why would Kemp want to moon Torre? And how is that a clue?" Now it all makes sense. Good puzzle Sax.

Eric Karros said...

The Nancy Reagan clue initially had me looking up birthdays and zodiac signs, as I think happened with others as well. When I realized that wasn't working I finally figured out the planet part. So I think Nancy Reagan was both a blessing and a curse (as was the Nancy Reagan clue).

QuadSevens said...

I was checking out the zodiac signs as well at one point EK. Then I reread the "gravity" clue and starting looking at the weights of the players. I was all over the place.

cigarcow said...

I got the right freakin' answer and no credit.

Steve Sax said...

The sad thing is, the line about the fictional Torre going to consult with astrologers to determine his lineups...just might not be that far off base.

Speaking of which, hopefully Matt Kemp won't stray too far off base, either.

Thanks for staying up, quad

Eric Karros said...

cigarcow, check your email

QuadSevens said...

No problem Sax, I had to stay up. This puzzle was really getting to me. I think I thought about it way too much. I was walking around work thinking about, eating dinner thinking about it, it was in my head all day. If I went to sleep without knowing the solution I would have had nightmares.

Loney Fan said...

I was searching for birthdays, zodiacal signs and numerology for hours before it came to me.