Saturday, August 30, 2008

My List

The Old Man asked who I got. Here's who I got...
  • St Louis - Stan Musial. In ten years it could be King Albert.
  • Reds - Pete Rose
  • White Sox - As a catcher in the 80s and 90s, Carlton Fisk was a boyhood idol. But Frank Thomas was one of the best right handed hitters of his generation. The Big Hurt gets the nod.
  • Giants - When I think of the Giants I think of Willie Mays effortlessly tracking down fly balls in center. Bonds may have better numbers. But Mays is the Giants. By the way, Christy Mathewson and Mel Ott are two of my favorite players and they don't get the pub that people like Walter Johnson, Cy Young, or Babe Ruth got. These two guys were fantastic.
  • Blue Jays - Roberto Alomar. My age related bias makes him the greatest second baseman ever...
  • Astros - Craig Biggio
  • Nationals/Expos - The Hawk. Can you imagine if his knees hadn't been shot? Great athlete playing the best years of his career in Montreal.
  • Cubs - Ernie Banks
  • Brewers - Robin Yount
  • Diamond Backs - I know that the Big Unit may be one of the best lefties ever. But he's forever a Mariner in my mind (don't ask me how...) Luis Gonzales and Steve Finley share this honor.
  • Padres - Tony Gwynn. Not sure why anyone would vote for anyone else. Maybe I can see voting for Trevor Hoffman. But Gwynn was amazing.
  • Marlins - Jeff Conine. The original Marlin who kept coming back.
  • Royals - George Brett. Again, why would anyone vote for anyone else?
  • Pirates - Roberto Clemente (I debated between Clemente and Wagner for a while. In the end, it seems like Clemente means more to the fans of Pittsburgh than Wagner. If we were to go solely on pure talent, then Bonds would be the guy...)
  • Rays - This is more of a lifetime achievement award. I know he didn't spend much time there, but Fred McGriff gets my vote. Wherever he went, he made those around him better. He was so clutch for so many years. When he played for the Braves, fear and trembling swept through me when he came to bat because I knew trouble was brewing.
  • Angels - Garret Anderson. So good for so long. He often killed my Mariners with big hits.
  • Twins - Kirby Puckett. Probably a case of age related bias. But in my mind, he is to the Twins what Mays is to the Giants.
  • Indians - Bob Feller
  • Mariners - Ken Griffey Jr (Here's where I had another debate. Jr. or Edgar? In the end, up until the day he asked to be traded, Jr. was a huge fan favorite. Edgar is, I think, the sentimental favorite. But Jr. was great and put Seattle on the baseball map. If not for him, I'm not sure there would be a team in Seattle. That being said, I'm not sure there's a team in Seattle now, but that's another post.)
  • Mets - I went with Gooden. This is probably due to an age related bias, though... Strawberry was great as well. He put up huge numbers in an era where huge numbers were rare.
  • Rockies - I went with Andres Gallaraga. Though I see the folks in Fan Nation went with Helton. I have no problem with that. The back story of Andres recovering from cancer or something give him the sentimental edge in my mind.
  • Athletics - It was strange. I saw Eck and voted for Eck and neglected the rest of the list. He changed the game and the way closers are used. But Ricky Henderson is arguably one of the best left fielders of all time and, in my mind, the best lead-off guy ever... What was I thinking? In all honesty, this franchise should be broken into the Philly years and the Oakland years. Jimmie Foxx was a monster.
  • Tigers - Ty Cobb. Love him or hate him, he's an all time great.
  • Rangers - I went with Pudge Rodriquez. He may be the best catcher ever. Definitely top 5.
  • Braves - Hank Aaron. To say anyone else is almost sacrilege.
  • Phillies - There's quite a few guys to choose from who, in my mind, are at about the same level of excellence. I'm going with Schmidt, who may be the best third baseman ever.
  • Red Sox - Ted Williams. I personally can't believe anyone would vote for anyone but Ted.
  • Yankees - I know Ruth is basically baseball's version of Zeus. But I went with the Iron Horse. Take a look at the numbers he put up hitting behind Ruth. He was amazing. I'm not so sure that if ALS hadn't shortened his life, he wouldn't have made a run at Ruth's records. Again, my personal feelings may be clouding my mind...
  • Orioles - Age related bias makes me want to say Cal. I know Brooks was great. But could Frank Robinson be the most underrated and under appreciated ballplayer ever? I'm going with Frank Robinson.
  • Dodgers - For my fifth grade career day, I dressed as Jackie Robinson. He did so much to not only change the face of MLB, but also to change the hearts and minds of whites all across the nation. There are Dodgers with better numbers and more rings and honors, but Jackie Robinson is the Dodgers in my mind.