Last night, we talked about how Cubs left-hander Doug Davis is lucky he's still in ****ing baseball. After some more thought, I decided it might be fun to compile of list of players who are lucky to still be hanging around the league.
So, today I went through the rosters of all 30 teams and picked one guy from each franchise who is damn lucky to still be pulling an MLB paycheck. Below you'll find the fruits of my labor:
Arizona -- Aaron Heilman, the right-handed reliever was done two years ago when he was with the Cubs. He's still hanging on despite an 8.84 ERA. Somehow, he has a 4-0 record though.
Atlanta -- Scott Linebrink, the right-handed reliever hasn't been good since 2008, but he's still collecting a $5.5 million paycheck. All thanks to the White Sox.
Baltimore -- Mark Reynolds, not many guys can hit .198 one year, then come back and hit .192 the next year and still keep an everyday job. This guy is running a racket.
Boston -- Dan Wheeler, the right-handed reliever takes about 10 hours in between pitches. Given that he puts so much thought and contemplation into each offering, you would think he'd have better than a 7.31 ERA.
Cubs -- Doug Davis, the left-hander has made five starts this year and lost them all. You mean they ain't released you yet?
White Sox -- Mark Teahen, the Royals were just going to non-tender this guy during the 2009 offseason. Then, the White Sox inexplicably traded for him and gave him $4.5 million per year to warm the bench. That's the very definition of lucky to be in ****in' baseball.
Cincinnati -- Edgar Renteria, the veteran shortstop has sucked for several seasons. But he had a couple of big hits for the Giants in the postseason last year, so the Reds took a flyer on him despite limited range and a .230 average.
Colorado -- Jason Giambi, the game is a lot harder without PEDs. Giambi is hitting .227 with six homers. He lucked into a three-homer game earlier this year. He's done.
Detroit -- Ryan Raburn, the man pictured above would have been sent back to Toledo a long time ago if he didn't get to face White Sox pitching. Nine of his 44 career homers are against Chicago. So are 39 of his 176 RBIs. This .208 hitter is a bum vs. all other teams.
Florida -- Wes Helms, this crappy third baseman was the apple of Bruce Levine's eye for years. He always wanted the Sox to dump Joe Crede and trade for Helms. I think Levine should stick to talking about his beloved Cubbies. Helms is hitting .228 with no homers this year.
Houston -- Jason Michaels, the much-travelled outfielder is hitting .146 with one home run this season. That home run was off the aforementioned Cubbie, Doug Davis, so it barely counts.
Kansas City -- Vin Mazzaro, the pitcher gave up 14 runs in one game against the Indians and owns a 17.47 ERA for the season. Won't be long until this guy is selling insurance. Or practicing print journalism.
L.A. Angels -- Russell Branyan, the slugger has played for about 15 teams. And we use the term slugger loosely, since Branyan has only one home run this season. He's already been released once this year, by Arizona. Only a matter of time before Mike Scioscia comes to his senses.
L.A. Dodgers -- James Loney, my good friend and former colleague Chris Pummer loves this guy. And I say that tongue planted firmly in cheek. Chris said Loney is the Dodgers' version of Brian Anderson. I don't know. Loney is hitting. 242. Anderson could *never* get above .230. But Loney stills sucks.
Milwaukee -- Mark Kotsay, a .257 average, no home runs, a chronically-bad back. Kotsay stays in baseball because he's a "good teammate" and he "plays the game the right way." Sure, he plays the right way. He just doesn't play very well.
Minnesota -- Matt Capps, the closer for now is 8-for-13 in save opportunities this year for the Twins. He's the second coming of Joe Borowski with that mediocre fastball and flat slider. On some level, you gotta admire a guy like this for sticking around so long when he's got nothing stuff-wise. But he's still damn lucky to be in baseball.
N.Y. Mets -- Chris Capuano, the left-handed starter was a bum when he was with the Brewers. He's a bum now, too. Despite playing in a pitcher's paradise of a ballpark, he's 4-6 with a 4.86 ERA. Goes to show you can stick around for a long time if you throw the ball with your left hand.
N.Y. Yankees -- Andruw Jones, once a five-tool player with the Braves, he is now an all-or-nothing (and mostly nothing) slugger. Batting .215 with four homers in a part-time role this season.
Oakland -- Brian Fuentes, a left-handed reliever who was killing my fantasy team earlier this year. I cut him after about loss No. 5. He's 1-7 with a 4.05 ERA. I guess that ERA isn't so bad, but it's quite a trick for a reliever to have seven losses the second week of June.
Philadelphia -- Ross Gload, remember when meathead Sox fans believed "Gloadie" would be an ideal replacement at first base for Paul Konerko? "Gloadie" was going to hit 30 homers and knock in 100 if the Sox would just give him a shot. Yeah, right. He's still in the league though. Somehow.
Pittsburgh -- Brandon Wood, the long-time top prospect was given every opportunity to succeed with the Angels. He blew every single chance he got. Now, he's been exiled to Pittsburgh, where he's hitting a robust .191. Next stop for Wood? Probably the Newark Bears of the Independent League.
San Diego -- Eric Patterson, Corey's little brother is batting .165 for a bad team. I guess all that speed isn't coming in so handy, huh? I can just hear Lou Brown now, "You should hit the ball on the ground and be legging them out." Little guys who think they are power hitters tend to not last long.
San Francisco -- Aaron Rowand, the 2005 White Sox hero would be out of baseball if not for one thing: He's got a guaranteed $13.5 million coming to him this year. In addition to millions of dollars, he has The Fire and The Passion.
Seattle -- Jack Cust, the erstwhile designated hitter has only one tool -- he hits for power. Ehhh....well, he used to hit for power. Only two home runs this season to go along with that customary .225 batting average. I guess he's better than Milton Bradley. The Mariners have played better since they cut that idiot.
Tampa Bay -- Felipe Lopez, the utility man seems to play for three or four different teams every season. He's always getting traded. OK, he's only played for nine teams in 11 big-league campaigns. But every team this guy plays for can't seem to wait to get him out of their clubhouse.
Texas -- Endy Chavez, the veteran outfielder was, in fact, out of baseball last year. He somehow got back in and is hitting .400 for the Rangers. His luck will run out soon enough, I'm sure.
Toronto -- Jayson Nix, he's batting .196 for the Blue Jays. Hawk Harrelson always told us that Nix "had a lot of talent." We're still waiting to see exactly what that talent is. It certainly does not involve hitting or fielding a baseball. About the only thing Nix does worse than hit is field. Other than that, he's great.
Washington -- Rick Ankiel, it just hasn't been the same since he left the Cardinals. He's batting .197 with only one homer this year. I guess it was kind of a cute story when Ankiel failed as a pitcher, then reinvented himself as an outfielder. But the party is over now. He can't hit a lick.
I hope you enjoyed this sampling of bad players. Please feel free to add your own.