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Thursday, June 17, 2010

Inforum: Erstad admits that he’s done

When did Inforum start reprinting articles from 2005?

Life after baseball is suiting Darin Erstad just fine.

Instead of chasing down fly balls, Erstad spends his days corralling his 4-year-old daughter and 3-year-old son, while helping feed the newest addition to the family – 3-month-old son Adam – a bottle.

“I couldn’t be much happier,” he said from his home in Lincoln, Neb. “I got to live a dream playing baseball for 14 years, now I’m getting to live the other side and it’s a blast.”

...“I’m done,” he said. “I had my time. I always said, ‘When I’m done, I’m done.’ ... I’m good.”

...“I don’t have any complaints. It was 14 very enjoyable years,” he said. “I gave my heart and soul to the game. I’m comfortable with my decision to move on.

“Do I miss it? Of course, I loved to play. But what I have at home is great, too.”

Repoz Posted: June 17, 2010 at 10:32 AM | 18 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: angels, announcers, astros, history, white sox

Reader Comments and Retorts

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   1. xanthan Posted: June 17, 2010 at 01:16 PM (#3561672)
It's pretty amazing that from 2006-09 he was able to find work while hitting: .251/.302/.346 (70 OPS+)

Oh, Ed Wade.
   2. BDC Posted: June 17, 2010 at 01:33 PM (#3561681)
And nearly as amazing is that a guy who, for a while there, was one of the best centerfielders I've ever seen, ended up playing the plurality of his career games at first base. He was an OK first baseman in '04-'05, too, but he hit like Gary Pettis; he should have had a role like Pettis. I still can't understand why the Angels did that; it was kind of like making David Eckstein your DH. What I understand even less is how they kept making the playoffs every year while doing it. Sigh.
   3. hokieneer Posted: June 17, 2010 at 01:44 PM (#3561690)
What did he have, one big offensive year in the height of the roid era? Somehow that allowed him to play over 600+ games at 1b.
   4. Matt Welch Posted: June 17, 2010 at 02:10 PM (#3561702)
He was really good in 1997-98, too, with power and speed, a fact that even Angels fans forget.
   5. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: June 17, 2010 at 02:23 PM (#3561715)
That 2000 season was something else (it was like Ichiro with actual home run power). I remember thinking, after 2001, that the Angels were a sleeper team because Erstad and Salmon couldn't possibly be that bad at the plate again. Erstad was pretty much exactly that bad for the rest of his career, but the Angels still went out and won a World Series the following year.

Anyway, before reading this article, I would have guessed Erstad had been retired for at least 3 years already.
   6. Rally Posted: June 17, 2010 at 02:28 PM (#3561721)
I still can't understand why the Angels did that; it was kind of like making David Eckstein your DH.

He had the hamstring injury that finished his 2003 season. After that, the Angels didn't think his legs could hold up playing everyday in the outfield. They moved him back to center in 2006, and it turned out they were right. He lasted about a month there.

It was the right move to do considering circumstances. Kotchman and Morales were not ready yet, Speizio was gone, there was nothing to fill the void at first base in the organization (as you can see by the collective 1B futility of 2006). Erstad put up 3.8 WAR for 2004-2005, pretty much league average production. Most contending teams can't have superstars everywhere and need average guys at a few positions.
   7. Home Run Teal & Black Black Black Gone! Posted: June 17, 2010 at 02:36 PM (#3561732)
I believe he was once referred to as "the defensive Babe Ruth of CF" by one of the big defensive metrics guys. He had some pretty sick years there with the glove, didn't he?
   8. BDC Posted: June 17, 2010 at 02:55 PM (#3561770)
That makes sense, AROM. Overall, the move fit with an Angel tradition (till very recent years) of 1B with decent gloves but not much power: Carew, Joyner, Snow, Spiezio. Not the Mo-Vaughn types one associates with 1B (except when briefly it was Mo Vaughn ...)
   9. Hang down your head, Tom Foley Posted: June 17, 2010 at 06:34 PM (#3562081)
Erstad plans to bring his famous football mentality to corralling his children.
   10. aberg Posted: June 17, 2010 at 06:54 PM (#3562105)
Thanks, Darin, for carrying the dimly lit torch of MLB players from North Dakota for the last decade and a half. You did well at it, even though you dealt with some tough injuries and struggled to string together consecutive good seasons. You got a ring out of the deal to go with your NCAA title as Nebraska's punter, and you lit up the little box of North Dakotans in the majors in 2000- way better than Rick Helling.

Now we're left with Travis Hafner and Chris Coste, but we're going to have to get someone new in there soon or we'll be without an active North Dakotan with ML experience for the first time since 1987.

By the way, the Fargo Forum is one of the worst newspapers imaginable. Try to imagine how bad a newspaper could be and remain in publication.
   11. Rally Posted: June 17, 2010 at 07:11 PM (#3562127)
That makes sense, AROM. Overall, the move fit with an Angel tradition (till very recent years) of 1B with decent gloves but not much power: Carew, Joyner, Snow, Spiezio. Not the Mo-Vaughn types one associates with 1B (except when briefly it was Mo Vaughn ...)

Casey Kotchman fit that mold as well.
   12. Rally Posted: June 17, 2010 at 07:17 PM (#3562135)
Erstad playing 1B in 1997-1998 was strange because he didn't have the injury issues, and between him, Edmonds, Anderson, and Salmon; Erstad was the best defensive outfielder (though Edmonds was no slouch).

So why was he the one to go to first? Simply a case of veteran outfielders not wanting to move, and a youngster seeing that willingness to put on a 1B glove was the difference between playing in the big A or playing in AAA. So Erstad happily put on the mitt and did his best, which was pretty good.

Sometimes I wonder how it would have been handled if Scioscia was in charge back in 1997.
   13. Srul Itza Posted: June 17, 2010 at 07:30 PM (#3562148)
From 2001 to 2009, he banked over $45 million, while averaging 114 games per season and never putting up an OPS+ over 100 and only once having an OBP north of .333.

Well done.
   14. Walt Davis Posted: June 17, 2010 at 08:40 PM (#3562229)
Try to imagine how bad a newspaper could be and remain in publication.

So are you saying it's the Darin Erstad of papers? Or the Juan Castro? Or the Super Joe McEwing? There's a ranking of awfulness you know.
   15. rdfc Posted: June 19, 2010 at 08:39 AM (#3563998)
Wasn't it just 5 years ago that Scioscia was declaring that Erstad was the Angels' best player

""Sometimes your best player isn't the best player, at least statistically. The players all know Erstad is our best player....People tell me that we'd be better with someone other than Erstad or David Eckstein, and I know otherwise. If they want someone else, fine, find someone else to manage."

So how come Scioscia is still the Angels manager?
   16. BDC Posted: June 19, 2010 at 12:37 PM (#3564020)
how come Scioscia is still the Angels manager?

Could have something to do with winning the division every year.
   17. rdfc Posted: June 19, 2010 at 06:02 PM (#3564310)
That explains why he hasn't been fired - I wouldn't fire him either. The question is why he didn't resign in protest after they let David Eckstein go the winter immediately after this interview (about September 2004) and let Darin Erstad go only two seasons later. His statement implies that he would resign in a huff (and not one of Aubrey's relatives) if the Angels replaced those players.
   18. Drew (Primakov, Gungho Iguanas) Posted: June 19, 2010 at 06:40 PM (#3564365)
A decade too late.

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