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Adam Bernero? Zach Miner? There were so many.
His last good season was in 2006. The last lineup he faced that year had Emil Brown hitting cleanup for the Royals. There's no reason to pay attention to this comeback story. If he comes back, he can be another Ryan Vogelsong, and we're all pulling for that, but the odds are very much against it.
But here's why we pay attention to this story: Because there's always a could-have-been-a-contender story with every organization, in just about every year. There's always that one young pitcher whose arm or shoulder couldn't hold up to the rigors of major-league pitching, but who should have, dammit. Mine is Noah Lowry. I'll never forget this game from Lowry. My favorite pitch might be the changeup, and that game was changeup pornography. It moved and darted and dropped, and he had great command of it. Lowry was 23 at the time, and he threw 204 solid innings the next year. He was going to be a pillar of the Giants' rotation for years.
Then his body broke down. The same thing that happened to Bonderman, actually -- he had a rib removed to help with thoracic-outlet syndrome, and he never showed up again. The young pitcher for your favorite team who never came back probably had something different, not that it matters. I remember Padres fans agog with Dennis Tankersley, Rays fans entranced with Scott Kazmir, and Yankees fans enamored of Chien-Ming Wang. Every team has a young pitcher who almost made it, or who did make it, but who didn't make it for long enough.
Worst case is your own hotshot kids can see someone who reached at 20 and now at 30 has to beg for a job (good life lesson).
for some reason, I used to mix up Don McMahon and Ted Abernathy
I could always tell Alex Gonzalez from Alex Gonzalez.
There's always that one young pitcher whose arm or shoulder couldn't hold up to the rigors of major-league pitching, but who should have, dammit.
Scott Baker and Nick Blackburn. Easier since I had Blackburn on my Strat team this year - he's terrible and Baker is hurt.
Edinson Volquez and Johnny Cueto
I still don't know the difference between A J Burnett and Josh Beckett. When I hear one name, I can't think of the other.
And I don't imagine I'll ever know which Jeff D'Amico was which -- in fact I'm pissed at their parents for giving them the same Anglo name. Two Tony D'Amicos at the same time I could almost believe but two Jeff D'Amicos? C'mon. Selig should have disallowed it in the best interests of baseball.
Martin Prado and Gregor Blanco
Al Levine and Ben Weber
Then there's this one. You can add Scot Shields and Brendan Donnelly to the list for me. Donnelly's the one who scuffed the ball, and I think Shields had a year in which he went 10-10 all in relief, but that's as far as I can distinguish between these four guys.
There were 6 or 7 of these guys. Baker, Blackburn, Kevin Slowey, Glen Perkins, Brian Duensing and at least one I'm forgetting.
The same thing that happened to Bonderman, actually -- he had a rib removed to help with thoracic-outlet syndrome, and he never showed up again.
Which one is supposedly white?
Darren Bragg. Acquired by the Sox for Jamie Moyer. Kind of a Trot Nixon type, though not the hitter Christopher was.
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