When I was a kid, summer songs were a big deal. I’d be outside playing ball, avoiding dinosaurs and singing songs. So as you are sweating, as you are watching too many players go on the injured list, as you are watching a game ‘‘we shoulda won,’’ think of some of the summer songs that made your summers fun. When you are trying to get a report done or preparing for a presentation, when you are trying to get your kids to bed, when you are playing a game with your friends, when you are leaning over to make a winning putt or when you are watching a Chicago closer trying to lock down a save, just start singing to yourself, ‘‘Gotta keep those lovin’ good vibrations a-happenin’.’’
This quiz is the cure for the summertime blues.
1. On June 25, 1966, the Beatles started a two-week run at No. 1 on the U.S. singles chart with ‘‘Paperback Writer,’’ their 12th U.S. No. 1 hit. Ron Santo hit .312 for the 1966 Cubs. How many .300 seasons did Santo have in his 15-season career?
2. On June 25, 1969, the Hollies recorded ‘‘He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother.’’ Hank Aaron and Tommie Aaron never played for the White Sox, but in 1972 and 1973, the Sox had a set of brothers, one of whom also had the first name of ‘‘Hank.’’ What brothers am I talking about?
3. You’re so vain if you think this question is about you. Carly Simon, who sang that memorable song, was born on June 25, 1946. (Happy birthday, Carly.) Like Carly, three of the following Hall of Famers were born in 1946. Which one wasn’t?
a. Rollie Fingers
b. Reggie Jackson
c. Catfish Hunter
d. Harold Baines
4. John Sebastian and The Lovin’ Spoonful had one of the great songs of the season, ‘‘Summer in the City.’’ It was released July 4, 1966. On that same day, a member of the Cubs got a hit in the first game of a doubleheader to extend his hitting streak to 28 games, which was the Cubs’ longest until Jerome Walton hit in 30 in a row in 1989. The hitting streak ended in the second game, but it is still the second-longest in the team’s history. Who was the hitter?
a. Billy Williams b. Ron Santo c. Glenn Beckert d. George Altman
5. One of my all-time favorites summer songs was 1969’s ‘‘Hot Fun in the Summertime’’ by Sly and the Family Stone. As longtime Cubs fans remember, 1969 was the year of the Miracle Mets. But on July 9, 1969, the Cubs were in first place, leading the Mets by 4œ games. That night, with Tom Seaver on the mound and one out in the top of the ninth, the fans at Shea Stadium were on their feet in anticipation of the first perfect game in Mets history. Who was the Cubs rookie who broke up the perfecto with a single to left-center?
a. Oscar Gamble b. Jim Qualls
c. Don Young d. John Hairston
6. Martha and the Vandellas had an enormous summer hit with ‘‘(Love Is Like a) Heat Wave,’’ and David Bowie and Mick Jagger had a huge hit with a cover of Martha and the Vandellas’ ‘‘Dancing in the Street.’’ Here’s a question about hits last summer (June 21-Sept. 22, 2021): These four Chicago players had the most hits. Please put them in order from most to least.
a. Jose Abreu
b. Tim Anderson
c. Frank Schwindel
d. Rafael Ortega
7. Now, simply to prove that I’m not totally out of touch with the present, Taylor Swift had a seasonal hit with ‘‘Cruel Summer,’’ not to be confused with the Bananarama classic of the same name. Since 2012, in July and August, one Chicago team is above .500 and one has had cruel summers below .500. Which team suffered cruelly through the Chicago heat?
b. White Sox
8. I am blessed with the inability to dance, but even I can shake it when Marvin Gaye’s summer hit ‘‘Got to Give It Up’’ is played. From 2017 to 2021, which Chicago pitcher gave up the most hits?
a. Jon Lester
b. Jose Quintana
c. Lucas Giolito
d. Kyle Hendricks
9. What’s more fun in Chicago than spending a ‘‘Saturday in the Park’’? Well, it does depend on which ballpark you’re going to. Not including 2022, in the last nine seasons (2013-21), if you spent a Saturday going to a home game, which team brought you more pleasure?
a. The Cubs had a better record
b. The White Sox had a better record
c. The records were the same
1. Ron Santo hit .300 in 1964, 1966, 1967 and 1972.
2. Hank Allen and his Hall of Fame-worthy brother, Dick.
3. Harold Baines is just a kid, born in 1959.
4. Look at that: Santo was a question, and now Santo is an answer.
5. ‘‘Tom always called that his ‘Imperfect Game,’ ’’ Mets catcher Jerry Grote told the Hartford Courant in 1985, thanks to Jim Qualls.
6. Last summer, Freddie Freeman led the majors with 109 hits. Rafael Ortega had 68 hits, Frank Schwindel had 65 hits and Tim Anderson had 77 hits. But it was Jose Abreu and his 80 hits singing Mungo Jerry’s ‘‘In the Summertime.’’
7. In Julys and Augusts from 2012 to 2021, the Cubs went 269-248 (.520); the Sox cruelly went 244-274 (.471).
8. Jon Lester allowed 622 hits, Jose Quintana allowed 533 hits, Lucas Giolito permitted 520 hits and Kyle Hendricks gave up a whopping 751. Excuse me while I continue dancing.
9. The group ‘‘Chicago’’ had a lot of good records. In ‘‘Saturday in the Park,’’ they couldn’t remember if it was the Fourth of July. Over the previous nine seasons, the Sox were 46-68 (.404) in home games on Saturdays; the Cubbies were 58-55 (.513).
I hope you were pickin’ up some good vibrations from today’s quiz. Just a reminder that I’m always looking for questions and themes for the weekly quiz. Email me at email@example.com.