My favorite baseball player for 2012 is going to be Jamie Moyer. In fact, for every remaining season of his career, Jamie Moyer is going to be my favorite player. What can I say, I love my Cubs prospects!
Jamie Moyer is coming back from Tommy John surgery (reconstruction of one of the ligaments of the elbow); he missed all of the 2011 season, but he has made the Colorado Rockies Roster, and is in their starting rotation.
Jamie Moyer is 49 years old. Jamie Moyer had elbow surgery to allow himself to continue pitching at the age of 48. The list of pitchers in all of major league history who even pitched at age 48 or older is 4: Satchel Paige, Hoyt Wilhelm, Jack Quinn, and Phil Niekro. That was Niekro’s final season, because he’s lazy, obviously. Wilhelm and Quinn each pitched as 49 year olds (25.1 and 15.2 innings, respectively), so if Moyer can make 5 or 6 starts, he should pass both of them for innings pitched at that age. Satchel Paige didn’t actually pitch between ages 47 and 57; he made a 3 inning comeback as a 58 year old. So Jamie Moyer is trying to have the first legitimate season by a pitcher at this age.
The list of hilarious facts about Jamie Moyer’s career can go on and on (most of these from my friends at Baseball Think Factory):
He was drafted, and made his major league debut, during the Reagan administration.
Jamie Moyer was born before the Second Vatican Council happened (to connect back to another recent post).
When Jamie Moyer was born, the Beatles were in their second month of getting used to their new drummer, Ringo Starr.
When Jamie Moyer made his major league debut, there were only 26 major league teams (now there are 30). Of those 26 teams, 20 of them have built new stadia during Moyer’s career.
Since the start of Jamie Moyer’s career, Roberto Alomar and Barry Larkin both made their debuts, played their entire careers, retired and were elected to the Hall of Fame.
Jamie Moyer made his major league debut on a Monday; the preceding weekend, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off opened in theaters.
One of Jamie Moyer’s first teammates was Chris Speier. Chris Speier has a son, Justin Speier, who has had a 12-year major league career and retired three years ago.
Jamie Moyer is old. But he is still a major league pitcher, and is 33 wins away from 300 for his career. I want to see him get there. That would make him the second of the Cubs 1984 draft picks to get to 300 wins (the first was this guy). In fact, other than those two guys, all of the other Cubs draft picks from that year played in a total of 243 major league games.
In summary: Jamie Moyer is old, and he still loves baseball, and I love him for that.