Wednesday, March 07, 2007

The Second Mike Piazza Post in the History of This Blog

Apropos nothing: when Mike Piazza goes into the Hall of Fame, is "Florida" going to show up on this plaque? In case you've forgotten -- and forgetting about this is probably a sign of normalcy, especially compared to the amount of time I've spent thinking about it -- the Dodgers traded Piazza early in the 1998 season to Florida. He played five games there before being shipped to the Mets, who desperately needed him, as their starter until Piazza showed up was apparently Alberto Castillo.
Above: Hyperbole
Five games, seven days, four singles and a triple -- that's the extent of Piazza's Florida career. It was pretty incongruous: Piazza, making $8 million and coming off a year in which he should have won the MVP, making a layover on the worst team the National League had seen until the 2007 Nats, the infamous Firesale Marlins.

Don't worry, Mike. It'll be over soon.
Thanks to the pretty rad Hall of Fame website, doing some actual reporting or at least fact-checking was a breeze. The nearest equivalent to Piazza's situation I could think of was Babe Ruth's forgotten final 28 games, when in 1935 and at the age of 40, the Babe's career petered out with the Boston Braves.

Not a photoshop. As far as I know.
Look at his plaque, and there it is: "Boston-New York, A.L.; Boston, N.L. 1915-1935." Just in case, I checked the next most similar situation I could find rattling around in my brain, which actually wasn't very similar at all. The shortest stop in Rogers Hornsby's career was also the Braves, although he spent a whole year with them. But his plaque not only doesn't have Boston, it doesn't list his teams at all. So I'm guessing that feature of the plaques wasn't regularized until later. My fact-checking didn't extend that far.

So then I thought -- and O what a marvelous tale this is in the telling! -- of a totally, almost perfectly comparable dilemma. Ryne Sandberg (whose middle name is "Dee," which I guess spurred him on to great feats of athletic prowess, because that's just girly -- Sort of a boy named Sue effect) started his career with 13 games and a 1-6 batting line with the dumbass Phillies, who proceeded to trade him for Ivan DeJesus. Hey, you don't win one championship in 125 years by being smart. Anyway, Philly's on the plaque.

So, to answer my own irrelevant question: Yes, Florida will be on Mike Piazza's Hall of Fame plaque. And now you know . . . the rest of the story. Good day.

2 comments:

Chris Needham said...

I didn't notice one gay joke. What? Ann Coulter got ya down?

Ryan said...

Tim Hardaway, actually.