Here’s Ron Hansen describing his unassisted triple play as shortstop for the Washington Senators on July 30, 1968, vs. the Indians in Cleveland: “Joe Azcue was the hitter, Davey Nelson was on second base and Russ Snyder (who had started the year with the White Sox) was on first. Azcue hit a low line drive up the middle. Both runners thought it was gonna be a base hit and so they started running.
“Really, my momentum was going toward second base when I caught the ball. I stepped on second (doubling off Nelson) and crossed the bag and by the time Snyder could get turned around, I had the momentum going and I just ran him down. It was just a bang-bang kind of thing, a ‘right-place-at-the-right-time’ kind of thing. But it’s the only one made in the last 53 years. Of course, someone could do it again tomorrow. Then again, it might not be done for 100 years. But it happened, and it’s part of my career that was pretty neat.”
When Hansen got back to his hotel room, there was a message to call a representative from MacGregor Sporting Goods, the company Ron had an endorsement deal with.
The MacGregor rep was excited, breathlessly telling Hansen that they were going to design an advertising campaign around the feat. He caught his breath when Ron explained that he’d been using a Spalding glove at the time.
Scratch one MacGregor endorser.
That Spalding glove has been in the archives of the Hall of Fame since then. It’s flat as a pancake – just the way he liked it.
Another blogger added this on Hansen:
On August 2, the Washington Senators informed him the next morning that they traded him to the Chicago White Sox for Tim Cullen. What made this trade so interesting is that these two players were traded for each other earlier in the year.
On February 13, 1968 the Washington Senators had traded Tim Cullen, Buster Narum, and Bob Priddy to the White Sox for Dennis Higgins, Steve Jones, and Ron Hansen. When Cullen and Hansen were swapped for each other on August 2, 1968 it was the first time in Major League Baseball history two players were traded for each other twice in the same year.