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Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Pickoff Moves

Late, thanks to another Blogger outage...

Today's Birthdays

Ferrell Anderson BRO b. 1918, played 1946, d. 1978-03-12

George Crable BRO b. 1885, played 1910

Ivan DeJesus LAN b. 1953, played 1974-1976. Not an especially interesting player in his own right despite a 15-year career, he was a slick fielder with marginal offensive value who played on the last of the Walter Alston-led teams. Blocked by Bill Russell at short, the Dodgers sent him and Bill Buckner to the Cubs for reliever Mike Garman and Rick Monday, thus earning the wrath of those of us who know how to properly pronounce the Spanish surname "Encarnacion". DeJesus blossomed in Chicago, immediately replacing Mick Kelleher, filling a void in the Cubs' lineup present since the team traded Don Kessinger.

Though the Cubs haven't been known for their trading acumen over the years, they have made some excellent deals from time to time, and one of them was sending DeJesus to the Phillies for Larry Bowa and Ryne Sandberg, a deal Mike Carminati panned as one of the 50 worst trades of all time. The Phils got a younger shortstop while giving up their older one (Bowa was 36 at the time of the deal), but gave up a Hall of Famer in Sandberg. And while the deal worked in some sense for Philly — they won the National League pennant in 1983 after a second-place finish the year before — DeJesus turned into a World Series goat when he hit .125 and booted a ball in the seventh inning of Game 3, allowing the winning run to score for Baltimore.

Bob Duliba LAA b. 1935, played 1963-1964

Ray French BRO b. 1895, played 1923, d. 1978-04-03

John Hall BRO b. 1924, played 1948, d. 1995-01-17

Stan Javier LAN,CAL b. 1964, played 1990-1993. The least heralded outfielder of the late-80's Oakland terrors, he was originally signed by the Cards, who traded him to the Yankees, who sent him to Oakland for Rickey Henderson. A very solid fourth outfielder who could steal bases very effectively, but never hit for enough power to justify a starting job in the corner outfield. With the A's, Javier has the distinction of being the only player to drive in runs against the unbeatable Orel Hersheiser in the 1988 World Series.

With the Dodgers starting in 1991, he forgot how to hit, and during the team's disastrous 1992, he became a pinch-hitter, occaisionally playing the corner outfield slots to replace Kal Daniels in left or to replace whoever was subbing for Darryl Strawberry in right at that moment. After the Dodgers moved him to Philadelphia in midseason, he signed as a free agent with the Angels in 1993, mostly backing up the unremarkable Luis Polonia in left, but also getting some time in at first base; it was one of the best single seasons of his career. After stints with both Bay Area teams, Houston, and Seattle, he retired after the 2001 season.

Julio Navarro LAA b. 1936, played 1962-1964

Otis Nixon LAN b. 1959, played 1997

Harley Payne BRO b. 1868, played 1896-1898, d. 1935-12-29

Angels, Dodgers Announce Minor League System Assignments

The Angels and Dodgers have both announced their minor league assignments for 2007. Notable movement:

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