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Thursday, March 24, 2011

My (CMC) Fantasy Team

I finished up my fantasy baseball draft last night and I think I have a decent team. Though, I believe I think that every year. That feeling, as I'm sure is the case with a lot of fantasy baseball players, is usually proved wrong by about two weeks into the season.

I usually follow my team pretty closely, even in the down years, picking up pitchers here and there. Wholesale changes, however, are rare.

Anyway, I bring up my fantasy team because, while difficult, several of my draftees do have connections to this blog. As far as I've been able to tell, no actual CMC set members are still playing in the majors.

Those connections are either directly through CMC set members, or simply because their names are similar.

There are actually six members of my team that fit that bill, a couple of them were intentional. Others just worked out that way. My top pick just worked out that way: Ryan Braun.

My limited research before the draft pointed at picking up Braun, if he was available. I was down enough in the first round to pick him up.

Braun, as I wrote in November, was scouted and signed by scout and former minor leaguer Larry Pardo. Pardo was a member of the CMC set while playing for the Palm Springs Angels in 1990.

My fourth-round pick, Ubaldo Jimenez also falls into the Braun category. Jiminez was the lead on a February post on the coaching career of Jim Wright.

Wright was a Rockies minor league pitching instructor in 2004, watching over Jimenez. Wright knew then that a shoulder injury wouldn't keep Jimenez back.

My fifth round pick I'll save for later. He was one of the name guys. But, jumping down to the 17th round, I picked up Manny Ramirez. Ramirez, as I wrote about last June, was given some early advice by CMC set member Harry Spilman.

Spilman, an Indians traveling hitting coach by 1991, spotted the first-round pick in a nervous slump at rookie-league Burlington. Manny was homesick. Spilman, in a scene recounted by The New York Times that year, told Ramirez to call his mom.

Jim Thome I picked up in the 23rd round. He wasn't in the CMC set, but he could have been. He was actually in a ProCards wood-style set that year, for the rookie Burlington Indians. The card is one that I recently became aware of and recently wanted. But apparently it's rather rare, and expensive, at least for this graded one on ebay.

The other CMC connections were the name ones. I'll let you figure out who they were by their CMC doppelgangers. I took one in the fifth round, the other in the 22nd:

100 - Brian McCann, Trainer's Goal, 4/15/10
249 - Jim Wright, Good Tip, 2/16/11
616 - Harry Spilman, Calling (Manny's) Mom, 6/18/10
710 - Larry Pardo, Fiercely Proud, 11/16/10
769 - Derek Lee, Going Up North, 6/3/10

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