Wednesday, June 19, 2013

#24 Tim Naehring

About the Front: In case you couldn't tell, those are Tim Naehring's flip-up sunglasses dangling around his neck as he makes a relay (or warmup) throw. They appear to have an elastic band, like sports goggles. I can't imagine why he wouldn't just wear them on his face, with the shades flipped up if it's not too bright. Seems like they'd be a distraction flapping around his neck. I'll hazard a guess that it's the pre-inning warmup, and he'll pull them on when play resumes.

About the Back: Obviously there's an error in the writeup at the bottom. I can't track down Tim's college stats, but it would be pretty hard to drive in only five runs on nine homers.

Triple Play:

1. Naehring was a highly regarded but injury-prone infielder early in his career. When he was finally slotted in as Boston's starting third baseman in 1995, he was a big part of the club's return to the postseason. He batted .307 and reached base at a .415 clip in 126 games.

2. Sadly, a serious elbow injury sidelined Tim midway through the 1997 season, and in fact ended his career at age 30. He walked away with a .282/.365/.420 career batting line in 547 games.

3. He worked as farm director and later as minor league field coordinator for his hometown Reds, and in 2007 joined the Yankees organization as a scout.

11-Year-Old Kevin Says: Tim's awkward facial expression on the front of this card made me think of him as a player unsure of his abilities. Given his track record, he was probably just in pain.

Bill James Said: "The Red Sox infield is solid, and there's no obvious place for him, but I do believe he is a good hitter and a good fielder, and he may just shove somebody out of the way and take their job." As I said, it didn't happen until Boston traded Scott Cooper to the Cardinals in early 1995, but that's another notch in Bill's belt.

On This Day in 1993: June 19. William Golding, best known for writing the novel Lord of the Flies, passed away in Cornwall, England at age 81.

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