Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Who's Your (Non) Tiger?

My favorite non-Tigers of all time are Jeff Bagwell and Craig Biggio. I even own an Astros hat in honor of the duo. And as I’ve been reading several articles lately on why Bags will get screwed out of a Hall of Fame induction next week, it got me thinking about whom my current favorite players are today that don’t play in Detroit.

This may come as a shock to many of you, but I don’t hate everyone in baseball. Just mainly Derek Jeter and anyone on the Red Sox. But that doesn’t mean I’m a fan of everyone, obviously, either. So I set out to make a list of guys that I would love to see somehow transplanted to the D so I could openly support them and not feel like a jackoff.

One rule, though. No guys that used to play for Detroit. I feel it would be cheating to make a list with guys like Granderson, Polanco, and so on.

So here we go. Nothing better to talk about unless you’re an Eric Patterson fan. Well, that, or you think Fernando Rodney and Kyle Farnsworth battling for the Tampa closer job is as funny as I do. Maybe I'll do something on that at a later time...

1. Andrew McCutchen, Pittsburgh

McCutchen’s probably the best player in baseball that most casual fans don’t know that well. He has speed, power, patience, and defensive skills…a real total package. He’s what I hope that Austin Jackson eventually develops into. It’s just a shame he plays in Pittsburgh. I have a theory that Satan once wiped his ass with the state of Pennsylvania and Pittsburgh was the shit stain left behind. McCutchen also holds the honor of having the best hair in baseball.

/beyond jealous

2. Michael Young, Texas

Young was my favorite non-Tiger ever since Biggio retired, but I bumped him down here due to my strong hatred of the Rangers after the 2011 Playoffs still lingering on. But Young can do it all, and I look at him as this generation’s Alan Trammell playing alongside the flashier Jeter as Cal Ripken. I would burn down a homeless shelter to get him in Detroit at second, short, or third. In fact, when Alli from Bless You Boys went to the Winter Meetings a few weeks back, I instructed her not to leave until she somehow forced Dombrowski to make a trade for him. She failed and we are no longer friends, as a result.

3. Adam Jones, Baltimore

Amazing range in the outfield. Speed. Power. And by all reports, a good dude, despite sharing the same name as the NFL’s Pacman. Jones, inability to take walks aside, is another young star that’s been overshadowed. Oddly enough, he was originally drafted as a shortstop/pitcher by the Mariners.

4. Hunter Pence, Philadelphia

Another ex-Astro, I’m just a big fan of Pence’s all-around game. I’m also a fan of the name “Hunter”. I feel that if I were to start hanging out with a guy named “Hunter” and a dude named “Brock”, then I might become some sort of badass by association. I’m kind of weird…

5. Clayton Kershaw, LA Dodgers

Speaking of names, this guy has an awful one. “Clayton Kershaw” sounds like a rich, douchebag kid that’s going to try and date rape your sister. But this guy’s an amazing player for the Dodgers and one of the few pitchers in the game that I would go out of my way to watch on TV.

Okay, so those are my top five. Let me toss out another 20 names, in no particular order.

Matt Kemp, LA Dodgers: Another total package.

Andre Ethier, LA Dodgers: Not as good as Kemp, but damn good. Dodger fans are lucky right now. Dodger owner, not so much.

Antonio Bastardo, Philadelphia: He’s a lefty reliever with the Phillies. That’s all I know about him other than him having the most awesome name in MLB.

Jim Thome, Philadelphia: I wish I didn’t like Thome, being that he has spent the majority of his career destroying Tiger pitching. But he’s just too awesome of a guy not to.

Reed Johnson, Chicago Cubs: The ultimate fourth outfielder. Solid bat, can play all three OF positions, and okay glove. Goofy batting stance helps, too.

Zach Greinke, Milwaukee: I feel okay supporting him again now that he’s not with KC anymore. Dude has one of the best curveballs I’ve ever seen. And he’s not right in the head. I can respect that.

Mike MacDougal, Free Agent: A buddy of mine that’s a White Sox fan always used to lose his mind when MacDougal entered games for the ChiSox because he hated him so much. Dude blew Chicago leads like Lindsay Lohan blew strangers for coke. And anyone that pisses off White Sox fans is okay in my book.

Jason Giambi, Colorado: Steroids, blah, blah, blah. Still a beast in his day. And has the most badass tattoo I've ever seen.  See?

Justin Masterson, Cleveland: I can’t wait for the Tribe to eventually trade him, like they do with all their good pitchers, so I can enjoy him more. Hell of a young pitcher.

Wily Mo Pena, Fukuoda SoftBank Hawks: The modern day Rob Deer in that he does nothing but strike out or hit tape measure homers. It’s a shame he’s moved on to playing in Japan. Fun to watch.

Roy Halladay, Philadelphia: It’s either him or Verlander that is the standard of excellence in right-handed pitchers. No pitcher in baseball works harder than Doc.

Matt Garza, Chicago Cubs: I admit to being apparently the only guy that was excited to hear Garza-to-Detroit rumors in the past couple weeks. I think the kid’s awesome.

Chad Billingsley, LA Dodgers: Local kid from down the road in Defiance, OH. Gotta support the shithole where I live. Friend of mine who knows him says he’s a cool guy, too, so there you go.

Heath Bell, Miami: He won me over by running in and sliding into the mound in the All-Star Game last year. I enjoy players with personality since most of them are so friggin’ boring.

Chris Young, Free Agent: The pitcher…not the outfielder. Standing 6’10, he’s the second tallest player in MLB history. And being a freak myself, nearly 6’5, I feel the need to support my gigantic brethren.

Jeff Samardzija, Chicago Cubs: GO IRISH!

Roy Oswalt, Houston: Mainly because he played with Bagwell and Biggio and I ended up cheering for him as I rooted for them.

J.D. Drew, Free Agent: Drew makes my list of favorites for one reason. The entire time he played in Boston, I heard Sawx fans do nothing but bitch about him, no matter what he did. And since I think Sawx fans are the devil’s afterbirth, I would like to take this time to personally thank Mr. Drew for pissing them off so much.

Grant Balfour, Oakland: An Australian relief pitcher that does NOT suck. Pay attention, Brad Thomas. He’s the guy I wanted the team to sign instead of Joaquin Benoit. But it worked out okay, I guess. I’d still love to see him in Detroit, though, somehow.

Brandon League, Seattle: 100 mph fastball and the coolest tattoos in baseball. What’s not to like? That's two tattoo mentions in one article. Odd, since I have none.  Oh well...

And there ye be. As far as everyone else goes, they can get hit by a bus. Well, unless they end up in Detroit…


JacksTigers said...

Matt Garza is not a free agent.

SRogo said...

Crap. Fixed. Thanks. Proofreading is for suckers.

Eric said...

I was totally going to put McCutchen before I opened the article.  Couldn't agree more.  He is a stud.

kalinecountry said...

Players from the past; Mantle, Mays, Aaron, Frank and Brooks Robinson, Eddie Mathews, Musial, Ted Williams.Current non Tigers' players;
McCutcheon, exciting player,
Brett Gardner/DeJesus, wanted either in a trade/fa signing.Hellickson,
Brandon McCarthy, kind of reminds me of Fister.

Allison Hagen said...

so THAT'S why you never text me anymore. ain't my fault DD was hiding in his lair all week

MotorCityCat said...

Craig Counsell has ND bloodlines too, and he beat the Yanks in the World Series!

Deadhead said...

Jeff Francoeur Michael YoungRoy OswaltChase Utleyand from the near past ... Pedro Martinez.  I loved the way he would pitch inside.

EightMileCats said...

Still wouldn't mind seeing him as a Tiger...  and I may even be ok with Turner being included in the deal...  I just don't know how much more I'm willing to go.  Def not Turner, Smyly, Castellanos.

Fiddoggy said...

Best hair in baseball history... Oscar Gamble. 

Dan B said...

Rogo what gives? You had to say 'in no particular order.' didn't you, not I got that host from x-factor saying it over and over in my head.

Jay Hathaway said...

Definitely agree with McCutchen and Pence.  I would have to put Cliff Lee on my list because I love to watch pitchers that don't walk everybody.  He is so precise.  Also, I always wished that Ichiro played for us.  Sooo great. 

Additionally, I can't get enough of Kung Fu Panda, Pablo Sandoval.  That guy rules! 

Honorable mentions: Shane Victorino (Flyin' Hawaiian is just a sweet nickname), Ryan Zimmerman, Vance Worley, Eric Hosmer, Shaun Marcum (wanted to land him sooo bad last year), and Jay Bruce.

From the past, definitely Big Mac.  I would have top throw in Dale Murphy, too.  Perhaps Mookie Wilson, for the name alone.

SRogo said...

Forgot about Jay Bruce.  I'm a fan of his, too.

SRogo said...

I think Coco Crisp out-Gambled Gamble last year.

Phil Coke's Brain said...

Vlad Guerrero

Pawsdeep said...

I played High School/acme ball with Billingsley. He's a very decent guy...good one to put on your list.

As far as my list goes as far as non-tigers it would be;
Curtis Granderson--even if he never was a tiger, gotta like the dudes class and work eithic. Overall, just a good guy to like

Chipper Jones--never decided to go play somewhere else for more money, and coil have gotten way more than the braves payed him in his prime. Loyalty like he has shown doesn't happen often in sports

Jim Thome--classiest guy in the game. Never heard a single negative thing about him

My list could go one for a bit, and many coincide with so many everyone else has chosen for many of the same reasons. These 3 guys I just can't help but to root for

Bryan T. said...

Grady Sizemore - Did you see that pic of him holding that coffee cup over his massive junk to hide it?  Pretty impressive.

Marge Schott - I know she isn't a player, but you gotta respect a women like that some times. She is the beckon I sail my ship to.

Jay Hathaway said...

Yeah, he's gonna be scary when he hits his prime.

Jay Hathaway said...

Fo sho.  I was pissed when he cut it.

Jay Hathaway said...

Bad Vlad.  If I were to pitch a ball to wherever you are right at this moment, he could hit it from wherever he is.  Really far, too.

Jay Hathaway said...

Jones and Thome are good ones, too.  I love to see a guy play his whole career with the same team.  Except for Jeter, Rivera, and Jorge.  I wish they'd played in Japan for their careers.  Nah, I'm joking.  But seriously, they piss me off.

Kevin said...

For some odd reason I like Mike Stanton, think he will turn out to be a good player.

Jay Hathaway said...

Yeah, I think he has a good chance to be the next guy to hit 50 bombs.

Matthew Rouser said...

I was always partial to Pork Chop Pough and Trot Nixon, based on names alone. They were Bosox, but it was before they started winning so they still had a little bit of the hard-luck good will...