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Thursday, December 12, 2019

30 for 30: One Year Late on a Blog Bat Around

Another day, another blog bat around. Gotta catch up somehow, huh?

I saw this one on several blogs early this year, but the first one I saw was over at Too Many Grandersons, so he gets the credit. The concept: the player who first comes to mind when thinking of each team.
How I made this list: I simply found a list of MLB teams, and as I typed each team's name, I added in the name of the player who first came to mind. Then, I went back and filled in the logic. And then, the images.

  1. Atlanta Braves - Greg Maddux - my favorite player during the Braves dynasty, Maddux just defines the team for me.
  2. Miami Marlins - Ichiro - while Ichiro will be most remembered as a Mariner, the Marlins are on the list first, and his name came to mind the fastest. And after all this, nobody else has come to mind... ahh, Miguel Cabrera. And Giancarlo Stanton. There we go. Perhaps I should have said Charlie Hough? Why did his name not come to mind for so long?
  3. New York Mets - Nolan Ryan - this list has several players with the "wrong" team... but that might say more about the team than the player. After Ryan, Casey Stengel came to mind. Um... David Wright?
  4. Philadelphia Phillies - Roy Halladay - I hated the Phillies in the 1990s: John Kruk, Lenny Dykstra, etc. But Halladay wasn't a part of that nasty team in my mind. 
  5. Washington Nationals - Bryce Harper - Why? I hate this guy. But he was the biggest player in the District of Columbia until he decided he wanted a cheesesteak. Stephen Strasburg...
  6. Chicago Cubs - Anthony Rizzo - he's such a fun player to watch, and it's probably only a matter of time before I add him to my player collections. I'm sure the Cubs have had other good, memorable players, right?
  7. Cincinnati Reds - Pete Rose - I dislike Pete Rose the man, but I respect Pete Rose the player. Barry Larkin was pretty cool, but Rob Dibble can choke on a baseball.
  8. Milwaukee Brewers - Hank Aaron - because Maddux. Wow, I can't think of another Brewer. Oh, Yount. He played in Milwaukee, right?
  9. Pittsburgh Pirates - Andrew McCutchen - just an amazing player, and someone else who might end up a PC. There's also Clemente, of course.
  10. St. Louis Cardinals - Mark McGwire - Since he finished his career here and had his most PED'd season here, it makes sense, I guess. Stan Musial is next in my head.
  11. Arizona Diamondbacks - Luis Gonzalez - because Randy Johnson just didn't come to mind first.
  12. Colarado Rockies - Larry Walker - I was in high school when the Rockies came into existence, so this makes a lot of sense. Really, many of the 1980s/1990s names should be very obvious. Nolan Arenado is the second name that pops into my head.
  13. Los Angeles Dodgers - Sandy Koufax - I can't think of a more iconic player on the LA Dodgers. If this had said Brooklyn Dodgers, Jackie Robinson, naturally. Then there's Clayton Kershaw.
  14. San Diego Padres - Tony Gwynn - one of my favorite players since I was a child.
  15. San Francisco Giants - Barry Bonds - the guy who overshadows any other modern player in San Francisco. Thinking back to my childhood, Dave Dravecky, Kevin Mitchell, and Will Clark. And there's Willie Mays, Willie McCovey, and Orlando Cepeda...
  16. Baltimore Orioles - Cal Ripken Jr. - I would argue that Ripken is the most famous Oriole regular ever. Brooks Robinson is also in my mind. Manny Machado? Boy, I hate that guy. Great glove, horrible personality.
  17. Boston Red Sox - Babe Ruth - The Sox came before the Yankees, and Ruth came to mind first. Amazing. Johnny Damon. Curt Schilling. Pedro Martinez. Fenway Park.
  18. New York Yankees - Joe DiMaggio - it's only after returning here, and running through all the other 17 teams, that Mickey Mantle comes to mind. I could probably ramble off 30 different historical Yankees players. Ah, Jeter. A-Rod. Whitey Ford. Reggie Jackson. Dave Winfield. I should stop here.
  19. Tampa Bay Rays - Wade Boggs - probably because I had the Red Sox just two teams before, Boggs came to mind for the Rays. I remember seeing him in a Rays jersey and how weird those colors looked on him. I guess Evan Longoria?
  20. Toronto Blue Jays - Joe Carter - the Blue Jays beat the Braves in the '93 World Series. The Jays also have that jerk Bautista. Ugh. Next team.
  21. Chicago White Sox - Frank Thomas - The Big Hurt was a superstar when I was most into collecting. Who else played in Chicago? Um... umm... wow. That's bad. Uhh. Shoeless Joe Jackson.
  22. Cleveland Indians - Joe Carter - I just realized that he came up twice. Jim Thome actually popped into my head earlier, but when I was writing this list Carter was the first name in my mind. Bob Feller?
  23. Detroit Tigers - Buck Farmer - while Lou Whitaker, Justin Verlander, Cecil Fielder, and Miguel Cabrera are much bigger names, Buck was my student when he was in high school, so he'll probably always be the first to come to mind when I think of the Tigers now.
  24. Kansas City Royals - George Brett - Yount and Brett got their 3000th hits in 1992, and while I can't think of another Royal right now (ouch) Brett will probably be the most iconic Royal in my mind for a long time. Hal McRae was a Royal, right? Paul Molitor!
  25. Minnesota Twins - Kirby Puckett - If I didn't think of Puckett with the Twins, that would probably be a sin. How many times did I hear about Puckett playing the ball off of the hefty bag in right field of the Metrodome? Harmon Killebrew also comes to mind.
  26. Houston Astros - Jose Altuve - another one of my favorite players, I can't think of the Astros without thinking of him. Beyond that, Jeff Bagwell, Roger Clemens, and of course Nolan Ryan.
  27. Los Angeles Angels - Albert Pujols - it is odd to me that I didn't think of Pujols playing with the Cardinals, but by the time I got to LA he was the first name out of my memory bank. Dave Winfield played for the Angels, too, right? Gene Autry was an Angel... sort of. And Nolan Ryan, Reggie Jackson. Mike Trout?! That took a long time to remember.
  28. Oakland Athletics - Jose Canseco - my first favorite player, where he was playing when I first got into baseball. Dave Stewart, Dennis Eckersley, and does anyone else remember Terry Steinbach? Walt Weiss! Wow, the 1990ish A's dynasty.
  29. Seattle Mariners - Ken Griffey Jr. - are you surprised? There's also Felix Hernandez, A-Rod, Edgar Martinez, Jay Buhner.
  30. Texas Rangers - Nolan Ryan - he's the second guy to end up on this list twice, and this time it wasn't subconciously. Ryan was just so dominating, even in his twilight seasons. Juan Gonzalez is the second name to come to mind... and from there we're about done.
And with that, this list is complete!

Until next time...


  1. I keep thinking I should do this for NPB.

    1. I'll join you since I'm pretty sure I never did this. Having to remember all 30 MLB teams sounds like hell but 12 is a lot more manageable.

    2. I don't think I could do so well with NPB, actually, mainly because I know so many names but can't really associate them with teams so well.

  2. Fuji inspired me and then I kicked it off:

    Also, there's a guy doing this one team at a time on Twitter for the last week or so and all I can think of is "those old uncool bloggers thought of this a year ago!"

    1. How in tarnation did I miss that post? It's interesting to see that we had some overlap, and there were a lot of names that have just slipped my mind being stuck around the world from most of my cards.

      Those Twitter folks think they're so clever. Bloggers have been blazing the trail since ... Geocities went out of fashion?