Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Another Sort of Tribute: Brian McRae

A few days ago I paid tribute to Dave Stewart, which is probably at least semi-understood. Today I sort of pay tribute to Brian McRae. Why, you may ask? Well, to me growing up, he was sort of a mini Jr. Griffey, believe it or not.

He never hit as well as all. In fact, he only hit 103 homeruns over his entire career. But in my young mind, McRae had some of the defensive CF stylings of Griffey, some of that Griffey speed, and a little bit of that Griffey pop. And he just seemed like a cool guy with a lot of cool cards.

Now, the stats do not back me up. McRae's career TZ rating in CF was -24, which is far worse than Griffey's 4, and actually shows McRae as a below average fielder. The most homers McRae even had in a season was 21 in 1998, which along with his 79 RBI in that year, are both far lower than anything Griffey produced in his prime. And the most SB McRae ever had in a season was 37, which is fine, but clearly not as high as I expected.

That said, I don't remember the McRae that the stats show. The McRae I remember looked a lot more like this:
Focused and determined, ready to dominate the league, which he did in the 90's of my memory. Whether stats agree with that or not, I think this is a pretty cool card.


  1. I agree... I was a huge fan of B-Mac... He could play defense and he could hit. He didn't have the huge 90s numbers, but he was a legit player. He DID have a lot of cool cards, too.

  2. When I interviewed him he said one of his earliest cards actually had a picture of Willie Wilson instead of him. I could never figure out which one it was.

    To me the Griffey clone would be Carl Everett. Not so much that they were similar types of players, but Everett seemed to actively try to mimic Griffey's batting stance.

  3. Troll - Glad you agree!

    Bo - Oh yeah, I think I remember that interview. Weird, I wonder if I'll ever come across it. And spot on on the bat mimicking of Everett...definitely very similar. I guess if you gotta emulate someone's swing, make it one of the best.