Tuesday, November 12, 2013

#105 Gregg Jefferies

About the Front: The partially-visible memorial patch on Gregg Jefferies' right sleeve bears the initials "JRB" for Joseph R. Burke, who served as the Royals' general manager from 1974 to 1981 and as team president from 1981 until his death from lymphatic cancer at age 68 in 1992.

About the Back: Jefferies was chosen 20th overall in the loaded 1985 draft, coming in behind Barrys Bonds and Larkin and Will Clark, and two picks ahead of Rafael Palmeiro.

Triple Play:

1. Gregg came under heavy scrutiny in New York because of his gaudy minor league numbers (he batted .367/.423/.598 as a 19-year-old in AA) and his fast start in the majors. He addressed criticism from his senior teammates by sending an open letter to sports radio station WFAN. One excerpt: "If only we can concentrate more on the games than complaining and bickering and pointing fingers, we would all be better off." It's like he didn't even realize that he was playing for the Mets.

2. A trade sent him from Kansas City to St. Louis for Felix Jose. During Jefferies' two seasons as a Cardinal, he made the only two All-Star teams of his career while batting .335 and reaching base at a .401 clip.

3. He opened his own sports instructional facility near his current home in Pleasanton, CA.

11-Year-Old Kevin Says: I looked at Gregg's counting stats in 1993 and figured he was a superstar. A .342 average gets your attention as a kid.

Bill James Said: "1993 was the first of a string of outstanding seasons for Jefferies." Bill thought so too, but Gregg was done as a starter by 30 and out of baseball entirely at 32.

On This Date in 1993: November 12. The first Ultimate Fighting Championship event is held in Denver.


  1. If any player needed to not play in New York ever, it was Jefferies.

  2. He probably thanked his lucky stars that he made it out before the "Worst Team Money Can Buy" era.