Friday, March 13, 2015

All-DBAP Outfield: Weber, Anderson, Ruggiano

I missed commenting on the shortstop selection, but I don’t have any deep objection to the choices, although they missed Reid Brignac who played 303 games for the Bulls (#7) and ranked #14 in WDBB’s all-time OPS list. Personally, I think Melvin (formerly known as B.J.) Upton certainly gave us more thrills than just about any shortstop I’ve ever seen (probably more groans, too). Plus he was #4 on our all-time number of games list and #5 on OPS.

But today the concern is outfielders. The Bulls blog gives us 10 choices.
  • Leslie Anderson*
  • Rocco Baldelli
  • Russ Canzler
  • Carl Crawford
  • Jonny Gomes
  • Desmond Jennings*
  • Andruw Jones
  • Wil Myers
  • Justin Ruggiano*
  • Jon Weber*
Let’s face it, that is quite a list. It may be missing a couple of guys who were thrilling to watch, such as Fernando Perez or Joey Gathright or Kevin Kiermaier, but it’s a good list. Of those on the list, the ones I’ve marked with an asterisk made WDBB’s all-time list as well.

Let me make my argument for my choices.
  • Justin Ruggiano: 476 games and an OPS of .836. He came to bat 2064 times. That’s 200 more times than any other AAA Durham Bull. And he’s got solid numbers to back it up. He made a difference in every year he played here.
  • Leslie Anderson: 267 games, OPS of .769. Our view is that the Cuban National Team star was slightly past his prime when he managed to get to the U.S. Plus he was a bit erratic his first year as a Bull. But when he came around on a pitch he could make it fly. We came to really appreciate him his last year and were sorry to see him go elsewhere.
  • Jon Weber: 264 games, OPS - .827. We just liked watching him play baseball. No player ever understood the Blue Monster better than Weber. He probably caught more runners trying to stretch a hit off the wall into a double than anyone ever at the DBAP. He seemed to be always deeply into every game, never letting up. He represented the Bulls/Rays on the championship USA team in the world cup. 
If you can’t go along with Anderson, then Desmond Jennings or Russ Canzler are good choices among the players we’ve seen at the DBAP.

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