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I'm trying to think of other players who were not very good but were popular anyway. David Eckstein?
The only people who could be sources here are the owners or Theo.
"...when an anonymous club source told The Boston Globe that Francona appeared distracted during the season," Shaughnessy writes in the excerpt. "It was actually the opposite. Coping with a dissolving marriage, a son in Afghanistan, and severe pain and insomnia, Francona sought refuge at the ballpark and went to work earlier than in any of his previous years in Boston."
It's tough for a pitcher to be "gritty" without being successful. An outfielder can go crashing into the wall face first and even if he doesn't catch the ball the effort will be appreciated. The only comp for a pitcher is a guy who gets good run support and gets a lot of wins despite a high ERA. I would say those guys do get disproportionately liked but they are rarer than the Byrnes/Trot Nixon/Eckstein types largely because it's out of their control.
How many owners truly love the game and don't view it as a hobby? Ryan I guess, but other than that...?
Jeff Francoeur says hi.
35. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: January 16, 2013 at 11:53 AM (#4348116)
Speaking of ARod, horses, and sex appeal...
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