[The twentieth 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?]
I should be using the recent All-Star festivities to get the Padres edition up, but I can’t. I have a player in mind, but no card in my possession to scan. Or at least not that I can find right away. So that team will wait and instead I’ll use this opportunity to look at an AL team.
The Rays are expected to be sellers this season. They had some good years, and I hear their old manager is pretty good, but I can’t say I’m rooting for them in any sense other than as an underdog to take down a big market behemoth.
Evan Longoria is a star, for all intents and purposes, but he doesn’t see much hobby love. Blame it on the small market team, I guess. Since he’s the face of the franchise, it would be a pretty steep uphill climb to collect the guy. Still, I think I’d have a lot of help through trades on him, and the heavy presence would make card boxes more likely to turn in my favor.
Current player runner-up: Chris Archer
Sorry, Tampa Bay fans, but there’s not much to pick from in this category. Archer is a former Cubs prospect making semi-good, so that seems like a good enough reason to me.
Retired player runner-up: Rocco Baldelli
The Rays don’t have a deep retired roster to select from as a new expansion. Rocco was a big deal before life took a nasty turn for him and he was forced to leave the game. In his short time as a top prospect, it would give me a fun chase with all those crazy inserts during my collecting dead zone. And I could do it on the cheap.
The Series So Far
Angels – (tie) Jim Abbott & Vladimir Guerrero
Braves – Steve Avery
Brewers – Bob Eucker
Cardinals – Jim Edmonds
Diamondbacks – Randy Johnson
Dodgers – Jackie Robinson
Giants – Kevin Mitchell
Indians – Jim Thome
Marlins – Giancarlo Stanton
Mets – (tie) Darryl Strawberry & Dwight Gooden
Nationals/Expos – (tie) Marquis Grissom & Delino DeShields
Orioles – Adam Jones
Phillies – Mike Schmidt
Pirates – Andrew McCutchen
Rangers – Nolan Ryan
Rays/Devil Rays – Evan Longoria
Reds – Eric Davis
Rockies – Carlos Gonzalez
Tigers – Alan Trammell
White Sox – Paul Konerko