When youre typing the name Alex Rodriguez or A-Rod almost every day, it gets you to thinking about many things, including why there are so few nicknames in baseball anymore. There used to be a time when it seemed all the stars had a handle. There was Rocket Roger Clemens, Bill The Spaceman Lee, Randy Big Unit Johnson, and just Lefty for Steve Carlton to name just a few for pitchers. Then there were the stars and the baseball legends such as George Herman Babe Ruth, the Sultan of Swat, Stan the Man Musial, Hammerin Hank Aaron, the Kid Ken Griffey Jr. and that other Kid – late great Hall of Famer Gary Carter. You can come up with so many more yourselves. What surprised me, when I did a little digging, was the most popular nickname ever is Doc. Marlin Bressi did an article for Yahoo in 2011 detailing 81 different players with that nickname. I even managed to come up with a few more that werent on that list - Roy Doc Halladay, Ron Taylor known by all in these parts as Doc Taylor, because he actually is a practicing physician in Toronto. Another name I remembered from his brief stay with the Blue Jays was right hander Danny Darwin, who was known as Doctor Death, for not being afraid to throw high and tight on batters. And then there was the late Dock Ellis, who spelled his with the K. And the greatest Doc of them all was probably New York Mets star Dwight Gooden who short-circuited his outstanding pitching career by abusing drugs and alcohol. The Doc I really wanted to tell you about though, is Maurice Mike Doc Powers - a catcher who began his big league career in the late 1800s and played thru the early 1900s mainly for the Philadelphia As. I always thought the first and only baseball death, related to an on-field incident, involved shortstop Ray Chapman of the Cleveland Indians. On August 16 of 1920, Carl Mays - a hard-throwing, side-winding pitcher - hit Chapman in the head with a pitch. He collapsed and died in hospital 12 hours later. That incident led to the outlawing of the spit ball and a rule change whereby umpires would remove balls from games as soon as they became scuffed or scratched or anyway discoloured. I was surprised to find out Chapman may not have been the first to die because of something that happened in a Major League game. On April 12 of 1909, the Philadelphia As were playing their season opener at Shibe Park. It was quite a sight - the first stadium ever built entirely of concrete and steel, a state-of-the-art facility for its time. Mike Doc Powers was in the twilight of his career in 1909 at age 38. He was also a licenced, practicing physician. In the later years of his career Doc Powers was known as the Personal catcher of Future Hall of Famer Eddie Plank. Powers was also considered to be the unofficial pitching coach of the As and the right hand man to their legendary skipper Connie Mack.At some point early in this Opening Day game against the Red Sox, Powers made a Herculean effort to catch a foul pop and crashed hard into a wall. By the seventh inning he was doubled over in pain in the dugout. Doc Powers insisted, he should finish the game, which ended as an 8-1 victory for Philadelphia. After the game, Powers was taken to hospital where he was diagnosed with gastritis and or Peritonitis. Two days later he was operated on for a twisted/strangulated intestine. A surgeon removed a section of the intestine. Unfortunately, gangrene had begun to set in and after two more operations Doc Powers died on April 26 of 1909. Powers, over the last two weeks of his life, was reluctant to blame his condition on baseball. He actually thought he became ill from eating a spoiled cheese sandwich during the game. Author Brian McKenna, who deeply researched this story, mentioned it could have been a pre-existing condition that just happened to surface on that day. Doc Powers funeral was on April 29 and the entire As and Washington Senators teams were on hand, along with players from four other teams. So popular was Powers that thousands of mourners had to be turned away. Two years later on July 1 of 1910, the As organized what might have been the very first benefit game. Eight thousand dollars was raised for Doc Powers children. I found another fascinating Doc as well. Doc Cramer played in the majors for 20 seasons up until 1948 and helped the Detroit Tigers win the 1945 World Series over the Chicago Cubs - the last time the Cubbies made it to the Fall Classic. Cramer finished with a .296 batting average and 2,705 hits. Thats the most hits for any player before 1975 who didnt wind up in the Hall of Fame. 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He fully expects to play alongside Landon Donovan again down the road with the U.S. national team. For one night at least, Diskerud did that jersey proud. Diskerud and Aron Johannsson, a pair of second-half substitutes raised in Scandinavia, scored to lift a heavy-legged United States over Azerbaijan 2-0 on Tuesday night in the first of three World Cup warmups for the Americans. "Its an honour. A lot of great players have been wearing that No. 10 for the U.S. previously," Diskerud said. "Ill enjoy it. When it comes to Landon, Im sure that were going to be playing together again someday, and of course he has more caps than me so Im just borrowing the uniform right now." The U.S. needed a boost from the bench after captain Clint Dempsey was scratched just before kickoff because of a sore left groin. But the 14th-ranked Americans had trouble breaking down No. 85 Azerbaijan. Diskerud, born in Oslo to a father from Norway and mother from Arizona who met in college, entered in the 71st and scored four minutes later off Brad Davis free kick. With the ball high in the box, Diskerud headed it down to Michael Bradley, whose shot was cleared off the goal line by Elvin Yunuszade. Diskerud then banged the ball in with a right-footed shot 6 yards for his third international goal. "It deflected, and then it was just an easy job for me to score," Diskerud said. "I got tackled exactly when I was going to shoot, and I was just laying down on the ground in agony." He was wearing the No. 10 freed up when Donovan was cut from the roster last Thursday. Johannsson, who was born in Mobile, Alabama, and moved to Iceland with his family when he was 3, entered in the 62nd and scored his second American goal in the 81st with an open header from the top of the 6-yard box off a corner kick by Davis, who replaced Graham Zusi at the start of the second half. "I think we can be very happy with this game," Johannsson said. "Weve been working ridiculously hard in training." Tim Howard, making his 98th international appearance, got his 53rd win to tie Kasey Kellers U.S. record. The Americans began their intense two-week training camp May 14 at nearby Stanford University, and there appeared to be tired legs. "It was exactly what we need at this point of our preparation after two fully loaded weeks," U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann said. "It was a tricky game. You want to open it up with a goal, and it gets easier. You want to score a bit earlier. Next up is a match Sunday against Turkey at Harrison, New Jersey, followed by a game with Nigeria six days later in Jacksonville, Florida. Then the Americans head to Brazil for their seventh straight World Cup appearance and first-round matches against Ghana, Portugal and Germany. "Its good to finally get going. Now we can play hard, recover, travel and go again,"t; Howard said.dddddddddddd"I thought it was good. I thought tonight was what we probably expected." The Americans arrived in a red-white-and-blue bus sporting the teams slogan: "One Nation. One Team." The focus was on Klinsmann, who made the controversial decision to cut Donovan, the American career scoring leader. Dempsey, slated to start up top with Jozy Altidore in a 4-4-2, was an unexpected absence. "We dont want to risk here anything," said Klinsmann, who estimated Dempsey would heal in two-to-three days. "Its not serious at all." Chris Wondolowski, a local fan favourite of the San Jose Earthquakes inserted in place of Dempsey, was stopped twice early by goalkeeper Kamran Aghayev, the first with a knee on a diving header in the fifth minute. Wondolowskis header off a cross from Alejandro Bedoya in the 15th was parried over the bar. "You have to be ready at a moments notice," Wondolowski said. "Thats why I was a bit disappointed not to find the back of the net. I had a couple of great opportunities that I need to find the corner and hit the back of the net." Azerbaijan, coached by U.S. team adviser Berti Vogts, was outscored 5-0 in a pair of World Cup qualifiers by Portugal. With wind whipping the corner flags early and even the ball out of place during restarts, a new-look U.S. defence was hardly tested. Fabian Johnson started at right back, with Matt Besler and Geoff Cameron as the central defenders, picked over Omar Gonzalez, who replaced Cameron in the second half. DaMarcus Beasley, looking to become the first American to appear in four World Cups, was at left back. Besler and Cameron played together in the middle once previously, against Jamaica in a World Cup qualifier last October. For the first time since 1990, the Americans have no central defenders with previous World Cup experience. Johnson started three games at left back last year but just once on the right -- in the clinching World Cup qualifier against Mexico in September. Klinsmann used a midfield diamond for the second straight game, with Michael Bradley at the top, Jermaine Jones deep, Zusi on the right and Bedoya the left. This match became the true final football game at Candlestick, former home of the NFL San Francisco 49ers through last season and baseballs San Francisco Giants until after 1999. NOTES: A foul by Azerbaijan D Evlin Yunuszade on Davis early in the second half appeared to be inside the box but was called a free kick by Costa Rican referee Henry Bejarano. ... Timmy Chandler played left back in the second half for his first appearance with the U.S. since a World Cup qualifier at Honduras in February 2013. ... Donovan was named MLS Player of the Week for his two-goal performance with an assist for the LA Galaxy in Sundays 4-1 win over the Philadelphia Union. ... Injured American MF Stuart Holden attended the game ... A Nike ball was used rather than the Adidas World Cup model. 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