Tuesday, August 5, 2014

I Remember You

You know, reorganizing my collection has been very tedious but not at all a bad thing.

One thing it has done is reinvigorate my love for the game. Looking back on these sets, I see players that I had long forgotten. Guys who have been part of my watching and collecting life. Gentlemen who I thought were the next big thing only to turn out to be busts. (I was young and impressionable!)

In this post, I've like to relive some of those long-lost players who've been uncovered once again.

As you can guess by my player collections, I have a soft-spot for mediocre second basemen (i.e. Dan Uggla and Freddy Sanchez). It doesn't stop there, though. In the early 2000s, the Braves brought up a young two-bagger by the name of Marcus Giles.

Giles, younger brother of Pirate and Padre great Brian, enjoyed an All-Star season at age 25 in 2003 and finished 18th and 26th in MVP voting in '03 and '05 respectively.

I remember Giles as a prototypical two-hole hitter. He could get on base, move runners, steal bases or drive in runners. Paired with Rafael Furcal, they were a dynamic duo at bat and in the field.

Unfortunately, Giles was not able to hang on to the majors long after signing with San Diego for the 2007 season.

Everyone has one person they love to use in a baseball video game that shouldn't really be that good. Let's turn back the clock to Hardball 95 for my Packard Bell home computer. That player for me was former Baltimore Oriole catcher Chris Hoiles.

For some reason, seemingly every hit to come off Hoiles bat in that game was out of Camden Yards. It was amazing.

Honestly, that's really my only memory of the durable backstop. Oh, I forgot to mention he finished 16th in MVP voting in 1993 when he batted .310 with 29 dingers and 82 RBI.

Ok, so I never really liked former Blue Jays and Dodgers outfielder Shawn Green, but that doesn't mean he wasn't any good.

Green, two-time All Star, is most famous for hitting four homers and a double adding up to 19 total bases breaking a 48-year-old record held by Joe Adcock (18). He went on to hit 42 home runs and drove in 114 runs.

After finishing top-10 in the MVP race in 1999, 2001 and 2002 and Rookie of the Year voting in 1995, Green hung up his spikes in 2013 after his Israeli World Baseball Classic team was eliminated in extra innings by Spain in the 2012 qualifiers. 

I'm sure if we all look back to our sets we can find players we've forgotten about long ago but still respect in one way or another. Who's yours?

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