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Saturday, March 28, 2020

Baseball Question of the Day: Who’d you think would be a star but wasn’t?

Today’s question is about those guys we thought would be the next big thing but, for whatever reason, weren’t. The players we thought would be stars but ended up average Joes. Or, perhaps, somewhat less-than-average Joes.

In this I’m not looking for the tragic cases of stars cut down in their youth by tragedy or sickness or, perhaps, even guys who had major injuries before they were able to make The Leap. I mean, sure, if you want to include those, that’s fine, but I’m thinking more here about guys who just never lived up to expectations, whether those expectations were informed and reasonable or not.

A lot of these might be guys who were just coming up when you were a kid. Back when you didn’t quite understand what made for a can’t-miss prospect and what didn’t. Or at least the people telling you that guy would be great didn’t understand it. That’s certainly the case for me. My guy: Kevin Coffman.

Kevin Coffman was an 11th round draft pick of the Atlanta Braves in 1983 out of Austin, Texas. Eleventh rounders aren’t exactly comers, but if you followed the Braves from, oh, 1985-87 — which is when I got into that team — things were pretty bad on the big club. The pitching was particularly bad. In 1986 club had the second-worst staff in the National League and the 1987 club was dead last in runs allowed. There was a kid down on the farm in 1986 and most most of 1987 named Glavine who turned out to be something — and the Braves traded for a fella named Smoltz in the middle of the ’87 campaign who might could be something — but if you watched WTBS broadcasts at the time they only wanted to talk about Kevin Coffman. He was referred to, often, as the Great Pitching Hope for the Atlanta Braves.

So, who’d you put on your list?

 

QLE Posted: March 28, 2020 at 12:44 AM | 154 comment(s)
  Beats: stars

Friday, March 27, 2020

What we’re missing: MLB stars share their best opening day memories

It would have been opening day Thursday. Should have been.

The day hope springs eternal — even, and especially, for the Mets. The day we get a glimpse of stars in new colors, or future stars reaching new levels. The day every team’s ace takes the mound.

Instead, we are waiting. Baseball, like nearly everything else on the planet, is on hold because of the coronavirus pandemic. It’s not clear when it will be back, but for now we have to do without this rite of spring.

The game, though, is nothing if not nostalgic. So on what would have, should have been the dawn of a new season, we asked people around the game — from superstars to role players — about their favorite opening day memories. To hold you over until we can start creating them again.

Stories of Opening Days past, by those who have participated in them.

 

QLE Posted: March 27, 2020 at 01:35 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: opening day, stars

 

 

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