Two Off-Season Departures indicates that two long-time stalwarts of the game are retiring. Michael Young and Lance Berkman were two players who made their name in Texas, although for different teams. Both had successful careers and were favorites of mine.

Michael Young

Michael Young

Young spent the bulk of his career with the Texas Rangers, playing third, a little second, and DHing. When the Rangers finally got to the World Series, they tried him at first a little. It reminded you that Young, while not a bad fielder, was in the line up for his bat. He ended up with short stints with a couple of  other teams, including my Dodgers, but his key years are with Texas. In 2005 he picked up a batting title and led the American League in hits. His triple slash line in .300/.346/.441..787 with an OPS+ of 104. He ended up with 2375 hits, 441 doubles, 185 home runs, and 3491 total bases. He holds several Rangers team records.

Lance Berkman

Lance Berkman

Berkman spent most of his career with Houston, with one year stops with the Yankees and Rangers, and a pair of years with the Cardinals. He started in the outfield, but spent a lot of time at first, then did some DH work in his two seasons in the AL. He won an RBI title in 2002 and led the National League in doubles in 2008. He made a World Series with Houston (which the lost to the White Sox) and then won a Series with St. Louis and might have won the Series MVP if not for David Freese’s late game heroics. His triple slash line is .293/.406/.537/.943 with an OPS+ of 144. He had 1905 hits, 422 doubles, 366 home runs, and 3485 total bases. In 2002 he finished third in the MVP race. He hit .410 in World Series play with a 1.084 OPS.

Both players will be missed. As to their Hall of Fame chances, I don’t know that either is that high, but I’d rate Berkman’s chances as better than Young’s. Whatever happens there, the game was better for having them around. Best wishes to both.




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2 Responses to “Two Off-Season Departures”

  1. William Miller Says:

    Like you, I always enjoyed watching the two of them play. Too bad they played in an era that will be defined by all the other players who used steroids, because players like these two should always be judged on their individual merits, not by the era in which they played. There definitely is a changing of the guard these days in baseball. So many new young faces, but I guess that’s good for the game.

  2. W.k. kortas Says:

    From what I know and have seen, both guys are apparently class acts. Neither guy has anything to hang their head about.

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