My Ideal Baseball Team
A new feature on everythingscomingupmilhouse is ‘hardawayhatesyou’s favorites’. I’m going to make up a team of my favorite, currently active players in baseball, football, and basketball. These teams are not necessarily who I think are the best players, and this might not be the best team available, but this is a makeup of guys who combine skill with that certain ‘it’–to quote Mimi Rogers from ‘Austin Powers’, “Guys want to be him, and girls want to be with him.”
CF–Torii Hunter, Minnesota–If you read my ‘Plan for the 2008 White Sox’, you know my love for Hunter. He plays hard all the time, makes spectacular plays, runs the bases and hits for power and some average.
LF–Carl Crawford, Tampa Bay–One of the most talented players in baseball, Crawford is blessed with blazing speed and some pop. His arm is better than average, and he’s only 26 years old. In just under 4 big league seasons, Crawford is hitting .304 with 55 homers and 215 stolen bases. If he ever gets his power stroke down, he could be the most dynamic offensive player in baseball. But right now, I love watching him play.
RF–Ichiro Suzuki, Seattle–Ichiro is my favorite player in baseball. He’s got a cool batters box routine. He regularly hits well over .300. He’s made more spectacular plays than any single player in baseball over the past six or seven years. He can hit homers when he needs to. And I don’t know if his quotes are as awesome in his native Japanese, but he recently told a reporter who asked him if his re-signing would attract free agents to Seattle he replied, “I do not know. Please ask a fortune teller.” Yes, please do.
1B–David Ortiz, Boston–No, not Pujols. Not Ryan Howard. Not even hometown guy Paul Konerko. I like Big Papi. Even though he’s technically a DH, Ortiz is still the best clutch hitter in the big leagues and hits with as much style as anyone in the sport.
2B–Chase Utley, Philadelphia–I really wanted to take Orlando Hudson at second because he’s so damn good defensively and he really doesn’t get his due because he plays out west, but Utley is an all-around stud and its awesome to watch him hit. There was a stretch right before he got hurt where he was absolutely carrying the Phils; its amazing that they aren’t winning that division or at least the wild card frontrunner with the talent in their lineup.
3B–David Wright, NY Mets–Wright could someday go .300, 30, 100, 30 SB and win the Gold Glove. Think about that. A 30-30 guy who plays stellar third base and hits over .300. If he plays well for the Mets this postseason, Wright turn himself into a SuperDuper Star in the same stratosphere with A-Rod.
SS–Hanley Ramirez, Florida–This is the hardest position for me. I truly love Jimmy Rollins. I think he is the National League MVP in 2007. Jose Reyes is the most exciting player in baseball, and could be the best player as well in a few years. But my favorite player to watch is Hanley Ramirez. Check out these numbers: Ramirez is playing his second full season. He’s 23 years old. In his first year, he hit .292 with 17 homers, 59 RBI, and 51 steals. Not bad, but not fantastic. Check this out. In 2007, through 140 games so far Hanley is hitting .332, has 28 homers, 72 runs knocked in, 46 steals, and plays fantastic defense at a position which used to be totally deprived of standout players. If I were starting a team, would I take Hanley over Reyes and Rollins? I’m not sure. But he’s my favorite shortstop in the major leagues.
SP–Brandon Webb, Arizona–The 2006 Cy Young winner in the National League has 15 wins and a 2.91 ERA through 30 starts this year. Watch Webb pitch. His stuff moves a ton, and he’s a workhorse.
RP–Bobby Jenks, ChiSox–Big bad Bobby Jenks makes the team because I needed one of my guys and because he’s a big ole dude with a hard fastball and knee-buckling curve.