Would I Have To Repeat 3rd Grade?

This is from a colleague.  Her daughter’s a 3rd grader in Glastonbury.  Eight years old.  She had to answer this question from something called the Continental Mathematics League.

On a baseball team, Moran, Parker and Jones each played one of the three positions of pitcher, catcher and second baseman, though not necessarily in that order.  The second baseman, playing his first season with the team, had the lowest salary.  Moran, who along with Parker had played two seasons with this team, earned more than the pitcher.  Who was the pitcher?

And I would have cast an evil eye at the teacher. (Minus the rosy cheeks.)

And I would have cast an evil eye at the teacher. (Minus the rosy cheeks.)

So here’s what I figured out.  If eight year old Gerry had to take this test, chances are 84% his head would have spontaneously exploded.  Chances are 12% he would have sat there thinking, “What difference does this make, and why are you torturing me with this?”  And chances are 4% he would have asked that question out loud, and then his head would have exploded.

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About Gerry

I've been covering Connecticut news and sports since 1974. I know, I don't look that old.
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8 Responses to Would I Have To Repeat 3rd Grade?

  1. ybfree says:

    As a teacher I find that question absolutely ridiculous. WTH?

  2. Don Ennis says:

    Funny… but I love these!
    I tried your question on my wife the school teacher and my ten year old and six year old. Our answer: Parker.
    Took us a commercial break during some dumb murder mystery on CBS. Friday night fun at the Ennis house.

  3. Chuck Calahan says:

    If questions like this show up on my NCLEX exam….I’m screwed.

  4. Eric Gauvin says:

    Hi Don,

    How can the answer (who is the pitcher) be Parker. It says Parker earned more than the pitcher. How can Parker earn more than himself? I think the answer is None. We know Jones is the 2nd baseman and we know Moran and Parker are not the pitcher because they both earned more than the pitcher and they can’t earn more than themselves. That means Moran cannot be the pitcher or the 2nd baseman, Parker cannot be the pitcher or 2nd baseman. Moran and Parker can only be catcher. In the first sentence it says they each played one of the three positions, but it doesn’t say that each position was played by only one player. It mentions multiple seasons so I think the answer is:

    Moran = catcher
    Parker = catcher
    Jones = 2nd baseman

  5. Eric Gauvin says:

    actually that’s probably wrong… but still don’t get it…

  6. Eric Gauvin says:

    Okay I read the last sentence wrong, I thought it said Moran and Parker both earned more than the pitcher. So, the answer is Parker.

    This is the official solution I dug up:

    “Neither Moran nor Parker played second base (it wasn’t their first season). Jones played second base. Moran earned more than the pitcher so he’s not the pitcher; Parker is.”

  7. Eric Gauvin says:

    I think the most correct answer is:
    –Parker, or
    –an unknown other player on the team

    The question doesn’t say each position is played by only one player.

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