Saturday, July 3, 2010

Looking Over Past Scorecards

I've been keeping my past schedules on my mlbroadtrip site, but I am planning to retire it shortly, so I'm moving all the info here over the next little while. It's a great idea to keep track of your past games somewhere as it's not possible to remember them all offhand, and it is rather interesting to go back and read the recaps when you have a rainy day.

Another good idea is to keep all your scorecards. I have mine all the way back to 1994 - some minor leaguers I saw in Vancouver are still playing in the majors today. What I enjoy now is looking at these scorecards and finding out what happened to a particular player that didn't make it. With sites like The Baseball Cube, you can find out pretty much anything.

To take one mildly interesting example, I was looking at an Arizona Fall League game I saw in November 2001, just after the Diamondbacks had won the World Series. One of the players for the Grand Canyon Rafters was a guy named Joe Jester, who retired in 2003 without ever making it to the show. He was drafted in the 7th round by the Giants in 1999, but only two players drafted in that round made it to the majors (Coco Crisp and Andy Phillips). I then I started looking at the later rounds and was surprised to see that Albert Pujols was not drafted until the 13th round! Two years later he was the Rookie of the Year, in 2006 he led the Cardinals to the World Series title, and he is likely to be a Hall-of-Famer.

The problem with going through the scorecards is that I can spend hours searching for players from just one game. Given how many games I've seen, weeks can be lost before you know it. But it is fascinating how many players are drafted each year and spend a few seasons toiling in the minors before giving up their dream.

Anyway, I'll be posting each year's schedule over the next couple of weeks. I'll be backdating them but updating the left side of the blog with the links, so check back on occasion for those posts.

Old Photos

I've also been going over the photos from the 2001 trip that started it all. The quality is low as all the photos were taken with a 2 megapixel camera and then edited to save space and improve download times. To show you how much has changed in just a decade, on that trip we used AOL online to dial in to upload our reports and photos; the key was finding a hotel with free local calls. Now wireless is free pretty much everywhere.

Anyway, I found one intriguing photo that I've posted below. Taken from a Rangers home game in July 2001 it shows Alex Rodriguez and Rafael Palmeiro in the on-deck area. A-Rod seems to be telling Raffy about something - his mouth seems to be forming the word "Steroid". Perhaps the bit of evidence the Mitchell Report needed. Interesting that A-Rod is still playing while Palmeiro was disgraced after his false testimony in front of Congress.



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