Looks like Matt Stairs has finally decided to retire. He made it to 12 different teams (13 if you count the Expos and Nationals as separate).
Matt Stairs, for my money, is one of the most interesting baseball players of this last baseball era. He didn't get a real shot until his late 20's or early 30's, his rate stats were usually starter level, he looked like a beer league softball player, and by all accounts he was just a very good person. I was so happy that he got his proverbial moment in the sun with Philly with the homerun off of Broxton that may still be flying. Every off season after Boston released him, especially in the early 2000's, I rooted for Boston to pick him up once his inevitable one year deal was over. He always hit and was fairly versatile (1B/OF, great pinch hitter). A look at his splits is just some fun symmetry. Home or away didn't really matter over his career. He was just as good subbing as starting. Every month he had an OPS over .800 and under .900. Same in the first half as he was in the second. High, medium, low leverage were all the same. He had the same exact OPS against flyball pitchers and groundball pitchers. There aren't a ton of splits that were actually splits for him beyond lefty v. righty.
Bill James and Joe Posnanski had an interesting "What If" HoF article that Stairs made it into as wellhttp://thesoulofbase...-have-been.html
This article about him in the Mexican League is a great story toohttp://sportsillustr...11731/index.htm
I'm sad to see him go. I remember I went to Jeff Suppan's major league debut and was just a kid trying to get autographs from the Royals and Sox. I can't remember a ton from that. I know I got Gary Gaetti's and a few others, but I remember that Stairs took a fair amount of time out to sign the ball and talk a little with my stepdad before we went on our way. He PH in that game and hit a liner to left that was caught in the ninth. On the other hand, his game was a lot better than Bob Hamelin, who walked by our group and ignored us, with a nice 0-5 and a golden sombrero. I've followed him ever since and thought he came along a few years too early. I think if he had the same skills today, or a few years back, his career would have been much better with the way GMs view the game. He is probably the best hitter to play for 10 different franchises (maybe Zeile or Branyan. Lofton was definitely the better player)
Also, if you need Red Sox reading, I came across a blog post that puts Stairs and Duquette in some perspective.http://thedunnedeal2...-era-leads.html
Edit: In typical Joe Posnanski fashion, he wrote an article on the retirement of Matt Stairs and Randy Moss as wellhttp://joeposnanski....ents/#more-7877
Edited by Fishercat, 04 August 2011 - 09:38 PM.