[The ninth in a series: I’m picking one player that I associate with a team (whether they spent the majority of their career there or not) that I would strongly consider adding to my official want lists. They may not always be superstars, or the most popular, and honestly they may not always be my favorite player from the team, but that’s what will make this fun, no?]
The All-Star Weekend is upon us. I guess it’s not really a weekend, is it? How long have they been playing this game on a weekday?
This year’s host city is Cincinnati. Don’t really have much to say about that. I will say that if Wrigley hosts the game again at some point, and if I’m still living in Chicago, I’d have to strongly consider trying to attend some of the festivities. How many of my readers A) still exist; and B) have been to an All-Star thingy.
The Reds have fallen in the standings the past couple years. Part of that is from injuries, and part is that they’re running up against a very difficult NL Central division. I’m pretty shocked the Cubs have done as well as we’ve had, and looking at the names on the Reds roster, it’s surprising they are as low as they are.
Eric Davis may be a little bit of an unusual pick, considering the depth of this team’s history. Still, he was my favorite player from the late ’80s team I grew up knowing. I like the fast guys. Fast guys with power are even better.
Current player runner-up: Jay Bruce
Honestly, if you ask me in a couple months or a year, I’d probably say Todd Frazier – especially after that home run derby performance. Right now it’s Bruce, because he’s been pretty good. He’s not much for batting average, but the power is prolific. And he has this cool auto. This was the first autograph I pulled out of a pack upon returning to collecting in 2009. It came from an A&G blaster, and that specific hit gives Jay Bruce an edge in my collecting mind.
Retired player runner-up: Chris Sabo
I would never pick Pete Rose, but that’s a conversation for another time. Suffice to say, I don’t believe he deserves to be reinstated.
The reason I picked Sabo, over someone like Barry Larkin is two-fold. One, I wouldn’t want to compete against Nachos Grande for Larkin cards. Two, and more importantly, those safety goggles haunted my early collecting days. It seemed like Sabo was in every dang dern pack I opened as a kid. At some point, you have to concede that the universe is sending you a sign.
The Series So Far
Angels – (tie) Jim Abbott & Vladimir Guerrero
Brewers – Bob Eucker
Cardinals – Jim Edmonds
Indians – Jim Thome
Mets – (tie) Darryl Strawberry & Dwight Gooden
Pirates – Andrew McCutchen
Rangers – Nolan Ryan
Reds – Eric Davis
White Sox – Paul Konerko