Friday, March 11, 2011

Friday Baseball Post

My favorite least tonight. Changes all the time. Off the top of my head, not looking at anything, limited to guys I remember. Oh, and I think I'll disqualify all the HOFers (including Barry Bonds), just to mix things up a bit (I'm not sure Perry would be on my team, but the rest would).

C Buster Posey
1B Mike Ivie
2B Robby Thompson
SS Rich Aurilia
3B Darrell Evans
LF Kevin Mitchell
CF Andres Torres
RF Jack Clark

SP Vida Blue
SP Billy Swift
SP Rick Reuschel
SP Don Robinson
SP Kirk Rueter

Bench: Mike Sadek, Tito Fuentes, Mark Leonard, Matt Williams, Chris Speier, Bobby Bonds, Jeffrey Leonard
Bullpen: Rod Beck, Charlie Williams, Mike Jackson, Santiago Casilla, Gary Lavelle, Jonathan Sanchez

Toughest call: Thompson vs. Fuentes.

Tough to leave off: Krukow. Lincecum. Sandoval, the entire 2010 pitching staff...Jerome Williams.

Depressing: I went to a lot of Phoenix Giants games up to 1981 or so...there's almost no one here I remember from the Phoenix Giants. I was thinking of putting Ed Goodson on the team. Not only for the PCL angle, but also as a symbol of their manic need to have as many 3B/1Bs as possible during that era.

Bias: I tried to do this real quickly, which means it's easier to think of guys who stuck around for a while...who are also, usually, the better players.

Not tempted: Glenallen Hill. Russ Davis. Frank Reberger and Rich Robertson. Benito Santiago. Roger Metzger.

Guy I might have added if I had thought of him (before seeing his name when I was checking spelling): Terry Whitfield.

Not the manager: Joe Altobelli

Manager: I think Frank Robinson is still my favorite...I like things about Craig, Baker, and Bochy, if my rules mean I can't take Robinson.

Cool Frank Robinson as a manager thing: After a career in which he played with a lot of middle infielders who couldn't hit (Rose was the biggest exception), Robinson tried as hard as possible to avoid ever playing a middle infielder who could hit. This, of course, explains the career of Duane Kuiper.

GM: Al Rosen. No question.

As I said, changes all the time; I could have a team that's 50% different if I did this next week.


  1. No Will Clark?

    Having gone to many Giants games as a boy in the late 70's and early 80's I always have had a soft spot for Milt May and Johnnie LeMaster.

  2. I have the same question. No Will Clark? No Candy Maldonado? Actually, Candy's just a favorite of mine cuz people thought that was my dad's name (he's Navarro NOT Maldonado).

  3. I, too, found the lack of The Thrill perplexing, but Robby Thompson will always be one of my favorite Giants because he played with a broken jaw in '93 in the last series against the Dogs. He was just awesome. And I'm surprised to see neither Uribe.

  4. Jonathan, Plain Blog About Politics is one of five blogs I read daily, but until you say how The Thrill didn't make this list, you're Eliot Spitzer-the-week-of-March 10th-to-17th, 2008 to me. In the world of Giants who are sub-HOF'ers with a devoted following, William Nuschler Clark, Jr. is the first name that springs to (my) mind. He didn't get to Phoenix until 1985, but doesn't he deserve a mention for the '89 NLCS alone? Then again, being a Giants fan post-Torture may give us a different appreciation for mere NLCS victories. Fascinated to find out why he didn't make this list.

  5. Sorry, sorry, everyone: yes, I like Will Clark.

    Why Mike Ivie? I followed the 1971 (and a bit earlier) teams, but they were never really "my" Giants teams...I mean, I'm a huge fans of the HOFers, and several other players on those teams, but as a team it was guys who had always been there. And then there were the 1973 and 1975 teams, which were new and young, mostly, but never really had much chance of actually winning anything. So the 1978 team was a pretty big deal to me. And while I do like Jack Clark a lot (and the other guys mentioned above), the guy who I always think of for that team is Mike Ivie -- two PH slams, including one to beat the Dodgers? I'll take that.

    Plus I think I was making an effort to avoid just picking the best players.

    So: I like Will Clark. I easily could have put him on the team. Just happened to bounce the other way.

    I like Candy Maldonado a lot, too, despite the thing in the LCS.

    Not a huge Milt May fan. I suppose I'm love/hate with LeMaster, which I'd guess is about par for the course. As I've said, I saw him hit a HR at Shea once.

    Also, just to be clear: I like Will Clark. OK?

    Also: Brian Johnson! Gotta have Posey as my starting catcher now, and I hope that won't change for a long time, but I was at the Brian Johnson game -- best game I've ever attended.

  6. And because excellent political writing should always prompt inspired Giants baseball commentary, my all-SF, non-HOF, non-Plain Blog reader submission:

    C: Brian Johnson
    1B: Will Clark
    2B: RayRay Durham
    SS: Luis Vizcaino
    3B: Mike Benjamin (kidding!) Billy Mueller
    RF: Dustan Mohr
    CF: Darren Lewis
    LF: Moises Alou

    SP: Jason Schmidt
    SP: Mark Gardner
    SP: Atlee Hammaker
    SP: Dave Dravecky
    RP: Julian Tavarez
    CL: Steve Bedrosian

  7. Thanks for the commentary on Clark/ Ivie. I guess "why Ivie?!" was the correct question. For Giants fans like me who came of age (re: were born) in the 80s, players like Ivie can slip through the cracks. My dad didn't tell me about him, he didn't hit like Cepeda or McCovey, and Charles Einstein didn't write about him. Thanks for filling in yet another area of important (PH HR against the Dodgers is neigh crucial!) but under-covered information.

    Two more categories that could be interesting: 1) All 'Anti-Dodgers' Team (players who performed well in Orange and Black, subsequently played in LA and tanked - Jason Schmidt, honorary Captain) 2) The Russ Davis All-Stars: notable, erstwhile talented ballplayers who adapted to playing in the City as well as Jim Bunning adapted to life in the Senate. I'm also thinking of Steve Finley and Deion Sanders here.


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