As an insider once told me…“When Matt Yallof walks in the room…we stop talking baseball.”
Sensory overload. It’s our way of life. Constantly looking down and poking at a keyboard with one finger. So personable. With Twitter, Facebook, and real-time scoring apps, you can follow every pitch of an entire game without seeing a single play. I tried it and my eyes went blurry and a migraine kicked in by the bottom of the fourth. In many ways the technology is useful. But it also takes us away from experiencing the beauty of the game and the sport’s greatest players. Guy who are referred to as stars, superstars, faces of the game and in some cases, future Hall of Famers. In order to encourage more watching and less tweeting, I’ve created a new category to describe the elite. Players you must see. Or in this case, players you must SAW.
SAW = Stop and Watch.
7. Josh Reddick: His offensive talent is obvious and you could make the case he’s the face (and beard) of the A’s. But that’s not enough to be a SAW player. His facial hair is. It’s downright frightening to think that at any moment a varmint could leap from his whiskers and interrupt play. If that happens, you don’t want to miss it. Remember the classic scene from “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation” when the squirrel leaps from the tree an into the living room? Pure Chaos. But don’t forget: “Squirrels are high in cholesterol.”
6. Miguel Cabrera: To quote the teenagers, “Duh.” Of course he’s a SAW guy. He’s also on the short list of best hitters in history. Among right-handed hitters with 300 or more career homers, Miggy has the sixth-highest batting average. The guys ahead of him: Hornsby, Simmons, DiMaggio, Foxx, and Pujols. Cabrera celebrates his 30th birthday on April 18. What gift do you get for a guy who has a Triple Crown? Just wondering out loud.
2 and 1. Tie. Mike Trout and Bryce Harper: How can anyone possibly rank one in front of the other? They will forever be linked after turning baseball upside down in 2012. At an age (21 and 20, respectively) when you typically hang out at a local convenience store eating Cheese Doodles, Trout and Harper are household names. baseball-reference.com lists Ted Williams, Mickey Mantle and Ken Griffey Jr. as similar hitters by age to Trout. He’s too young to remember Griffey playing in his prime. But could be the most exciting player since Junior. One of the comps to Harper through his age 19 season: Ty Cobb. If that’s not enough to make you SAW, consider this: Harper is hitting third in the order on a team that needs a World Series appearance to be considered a success.
Posted: April 08, 2013 at 05:36 AM | 7 comment(s)
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