September 16, 2008

The Tao of Fred McGriff - Day 4

Fred McGriff was selected by the Yankees as the last pick in the 9th round of the 1981 June draft, fresh out of high school and then as soon as he started to get his feet wet BLAM! Traded to the Blue Jays with Dave Collins and Mike Morgan for Dale Murray and Tom Dodd. Drafted one summer, traded the end of the next year. That's either a major confidence booster (that another team would want him) or a huge letdown (the most storied team in the sport gave up on him enough to throw him in on a minor trade).

As fans it's exciting to welcome new players onto our favorite teams, but what about how the players themselves feel? It's no wonder that many reiterate to the media that it's just a business and this is the way this business works. Because what are the alternatives? You can pout, go AWOL, or grit your teeth, say goodbye to your friends and pack your suitcase for the next town.

I'm a Red Sox fan, but it's not hard to see why Brian Giles, though marooned on a terrible Padres team, wouldn't accept a trade to the contending Sox. He has a life to consider, and he's been around long enough to be afforded a choice in his future. Why would you sacrifice that?

(I've never been traded. But if I were, I bet I could bring at least fifteen head of cattle and a few bushels of wheat. Or a bag of balls.)

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