Wednesday, March 12, 2014

#174 Randy Velarde

About the Front: Randy Velarde's gold necklace is pretty conspicuous. It looks like he's wearing a ring on his right ring finger, too. If you're going to be a top utility infielder, you'd better accessorize.

About the Back: I didn't realize that Velarde was a White Sox draftee. You learn something new every day.

Triple Play:

1. His father Lee was the groundskeeper at Christensen Stadium in Midland, TX for 28 years, and is a member of the Texas League Hall of Fame.

2. He had a career-best season in 1999, despite being dealt from the Angels to the Athletics in midseason. Randy batted .317/.390/.455 with 16 home runs, 76 RBI, and 24 steals in 32 tries. He scored 105 runs and tallied an even 200 hits.

3. Velarde executed an unassisted triple play against the Yankees on May 29, 2000, snaring a line drive from Shane Spencer, tagging out Jorge Posada, and forcing Tino Martinez at second base.

11-Year-Old Kevin Says: To this day, I still mix up Randy Velarde and Mike Gallego.

Bill James Said: "Like almost all of the Yankee platoon players, he had his best season, despite a midsummer injury." Randy hit .301/.360/.469 in 85 games in 1993.

On This Date in 1993: March 12. North Korea announces its intention to withdraw from the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty and bars inspectors from its nuclear sites.