Thursday, April 16, 2009

Paul Konerko was a Basher

Actually, this post's title should be 'Paul Konerko was a Basher and then he became a basher!'. Allow me to explain.
I have been in a fantasy baseball league since 1996. Except for 1 year, I have always been in the lower half of the standings, often in last place. My team, the Bashers, has failed to live up to its' given name.
In 1997, I added Paul Konerko to my roster. Konerko was a hot prospect for the Los Angeles Dodgers. I have often fallen for hot prospects who turned into cold potatoes. Players like Billy Ashley, Rick Ankiel (as a pitcher) and Ryan McGuire fooled me (and a few scouts).
Konerko was different though. He was a 'can't miss', coming up with a team that had produced 5 straight Rookie of the Year award winners. Konerko would surely be the 6th straight, while leading my Bashers into the promised land (or at least the upper half of the standings).
I was sort of right about Konerko. He did become a baseball star, but only after 2 bad seasons with the Dodgers and Cincinnati Reds. He was traded to the Chicago White Sox and immediately started to put up excellent numbers. Unfortunately, my fantasy league is NL only, so I no longer had Konerko (naturally).
Konerko is now in his 11th year with the Sox and just bashed
his 300th HR. The Bashers have not been so fortunate.
I met Konerko at Sox fest. I told him this story and said he owed me one. He laughed, but did not give me a Babe Ruth promise of a called HR for me. I still think he owes me one!
Paul Konerko at Sox Fest in Chicago, IL-Winter 2005.

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