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Tuesday, June 28, 2022

The Guardians duo carrying Jamaica’s baseball legacy

Naylor, who is from the greater Toronto area, and McKenzie, a native of South Florida, grew up in homes influenced by Jamaican culture, and each regularly made trips to the island nation as children to spend time with family and friends. The experiences shaped them. In fact, McKenzie inherited his love for baseball from his Jamaican father, Stanton McKenzie, who taught him his curveball and paid for private pitching instruction. Naylor inherited his love of baseball, hockey and Jamaica from his mother.

The duo are on a short list of teammates of Jamaican descent to play together at the MLB level. Chili Davis and Devon White of the 1988-90 Angels are the most recognizable pair. (Davis and White are two of only four players actually born in Jamaica to appear in an AL or NL game).

“It’s an honor to play the game. I have to thank Jackie [Robinson], because without him, we wouldn’t have this chance,” said Naylor. “It is humbling what Triston and I are able to do here when it comes to representing our families and where we’re from.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: June 28, 2022 at 12:07 PM | 5 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: guardians, jamaica, josh naylor, triston mckenzie

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   1. . . . . . . Posted: June 28, 2022 at 12:16 PM (#6084271)
I still maintain that while Chris Gayle was a super cricket batsman, he would've been even better - HOF-caliber - as a baseball player.
   2. Ron J Posted: June 28, 2022 at 03:06 PM (#6084306)
Gayle's approach is kind of a TTO style in a game where outs are super costly. On his day though an absolute monster in the limited over format.
   3. . . . . . . Posted: June 28, 2022 at 03:57 PM (#6084320)
Gayle's approach is kind of a TTO style in a game where outs are super costly. On his day though an absolute monster in the limited over format


Thats what i mean - like with other batsmen who arent limited over specialists, while you assume they would've been fine baseball players, their mechanics and approach are so different from a baseball swing that its hard to know just how well they would've translated - obviously they have the hand-eye and reflexes, but could they have generated the necessary exit velocity to succeed in baseball?

But Gayle's mechanics look like a Harper-esque, weight-transfer baseball swing. He hits the #### out of the ball, and with loft. And he obviously has contact skills since he's 'barreling' spin in the IPL. Basically he was so talented he could use baseball style mechanics and mindset in cricket, and make it work (in limited over).

I think the translation certainty on Gayle is near 100% - he's the lost inner circle baseball great of the late 20th C.
   4. . . . . . . Posted: June 28, 2022 at 04:01 PM (#6084323)
For those of you who haven't had the joy of watching Gayle hit:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M2mRXtTG9Zo

Keep in mind, when he's opening his hips to pull with power, that is an extremely risky thing to do and he can't pull the trigger on it until after the delivery has begun - he can't sit-pull like a Gallo or similar TTO type in baseball would.
   5. Accent Shallow only believes what it believes Posted: July 17, 2022 at 07:59 PM (#6087108)
I still maintain that while Chris Gayle was a super cricket batsman, he would've been even better - HOF-caliber - as a baseball player.


This is a line of discussion I would have been interested in following, but I can't contribute since I don't know cricket or Gayle.

I mentioned it to a British friend:

"Hey, so someone mentioned a Jamaican cricket player who might have been even better at baseball . . ."
"Chris Gayle? Absolutely, I can see it."

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