Sorry it didn't work out here in Chicago. While we don't miss Sammy Sosa, you were still just a throw-in on a bad trade. Your desire to be an everyday player never matched your true ability on the field. I know you didn't want to be a "Major League Utility Guy", but let's face it; it's better than being a "Minor League Utility Guy" which is, in fact, what you are.
Here are some tips that I hope will help you as a Texas Ranger:
1. Learn to hit in situations. Any situation would be fine. As a Cub, I could always count on you to move the runner over on a 6-3 fielder's choice with one out. Sadly, I really needed you to get a base hit so the runner could make it to third base, allowing him to score on a sacrifice fly (or more likely, be stranded as the next two Cub hitters go down on strikes).
2. Learn to field one position. Most Utility Guys can field at least one position REALLY WELL. You are more of a "jack of all trades, master of none" kind of fielder. You sort of play at 2nd base. You sort of play outfield. But you stink at both.
3. Learn to run the bases. Yes, I know, it's hard to run the bases when you get thrown out at first all the time. But in those rare circumstances when you actually reached base, I would win free drinks betting on you to get caught stealing or nailed at third trying to take that extra base. There's a time for speed, and if you ever get any, you'll know what I'm talking about.
4. Drop the jr, Junior. Yes, your father played (20 years ago) in the Majors, but no one confuses you with him. He was a good player. You suck. It's not hard to tell the difference. Also, whenever I hear "Jerry Hairston, Jr" it makes me think of your old man, who (although not a Hall of Famer) could hit for average, run the bases, and play a decent outfield. It depresses me when I hear your name. Think how he feels. Even Ed Begley dropped the "jr" after a while.
Hustle is all some of us have. But we play church softball, not Major League Baseball.
Good luck and continued mediocrity,
Waiting for next year since 1981
Thursday, June 01, 2006
Open Letter to Jerry Hairston, jr