Friday, October 01, 2010

A 'That Guy' Jumble

Kevin Mench, who had last played in the major leagues in 2008, made it all the way back this season. The Nationals called him up in early August for reasons known only to themselves. Serving as an "extra bat off the bench," Mench has appeared in 23 games, exactly one of those as a starter, and posted a .125/.192/.125 batting line in 26 plate appearances. Despite his miserable hitting (-12 OPS+), or perhaps because of it, Mench's return to MLB has probably been quite inconspicuous to those who aren't (fairly obsessive) Nationals fans or who weren't specifically following Mench's career path, for whatever reason that may be.

Mench's largely silent return got me thinking -- how many similar stories are there around the big leagues? How many players formerly of at least some note are plying their trades in relative obscurity around the league?

So I did a little research (i.e., 10 minutes on Baseball Reference), and came up with a list. Try to match up the player with the 2010 team. First to do so correctly gets a free Capitol Punishment post from none other than Chris Needham!

Rich Hill (couple good years for Cubs)Arizona
Scott Strickland (former Bodes workhorse)Oakland
Russ Springer (long-time middle guy)Kansas City
Mike Hampton (yes, he's back -- again!)Detroit
Gary Majewski (ah, the Magic Man ...)Philadelphia
John Parrish (former O's prospect)Boston
Mike Hessman (brings the AAA power)Cincinnati
Will Ledezma ($.10-head type briefly w/ Nats)Milwaukee
Adam Stern (star of Canada's '06 WBC team)L.A. Angels
Brad Eldred (huge power, played '09 in Syracuse)Florida
Brian Bocock (S.F.'s '08 Opening Day SS)(N.Y. Mets
Thomas Diamond (former Texas hot prospect)Houston
Enrique Gonzalez (pitcher, briefly Nats property)Seattle
Mike Ryan (had 1.195 OPS for Twins in late '03)Colorado
Guillermo Quiroz (former O's backup catcher)Chicago Cubs
Matt Watson (had cups of coffee in '03 and '05)Pittsburgh

I thought of including Gustavo Chacin, if only for his awesome glasses, but he's made 44 appearances for the Astros and that's a bit much.


  • I'm hoping they brought up Mench just so he could qualify for a ML pension.

    It certainly wasn't based on skill set.

    By Anonymous VladiHondo, at 10/01/2010 2:01 PM  

  • How many players formerly of at least some note are plying their trades in relative obscurity around the league?

    I'm tempted to say this could be any veteran on the Nats...

    By Blogger Harper, at 10/01/2010 3:18 PM  

  • This move, more than any other in '10, is an example of the Lerners being cheap. Why not bring up a prospect like Whiting or even Marrero and give them some exposure to the Bigs as opposed to Mench? The fear of "starting the arbitration clock"?

    I know Bocock in on the Phillies, only because when he came in the game Wed. night I turned to my seat mate and said, "Who's Bocock"?

    By Anonymous Sec314, at 10/01/2010 4:24 PM  

  • What, no Shawn "Dr. Andrews Will See You Now" Hill?

    By Anonymous Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me, at 10/02/2010 10:02 PM  

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