Sunday, June 2, 2013

Minor League, minor consideration?

I'm on vacation this week, so tonight I started cleaning out the back basement as part of my "Honey-Do," list. I got about a quarter of the way through, when I found a box of minor league baseball cards I forgot I had. Inside were 1993 Classic/Best, 1994 Fleer Excel, 1992 and 1994 Upper Deck Minors and 1989 Star cards, just to name a few.

Whenever I get new Padres cards, the first thing I do is inventory them, by player, so I know exactly which cards I have of each player. Each year, I go to the San Diego Padres official website and download the current list of every player who's ever played for the Friars.

And that, my friends, is where my dilemna lies...

For example, here's three Padres players who moved up through the Friars' minor league system, eventually earning a spot on the major league roster. The Derrek Lee card is from the 1994 Classic/Best Gold. Lee, a number one pick in 1993 for the Padres, only played one year for San Diego (1997), before being traded to Florida for Kevin Brown. Darrell Shipman, from the 1991 Classic/Best set, was another Padre one-year wonder, wearing a Padres jersey during the 1993 season. Sherman played in 37 games in April and May during that season, and never appeared in another MLB game. He played for the Rockies and Marlins AAA affiliates for the next two years, until 1996, when he finished out his career playing in the Mexican leagues.

Tim Worrell, meanwhile, proved to be the "Mr. Longevity" of this trio, playing from 1993-1997 in San Diego as a reliever, This card is from the 1992 Upper Deck Minors set.

After further digging through this minor league box, I came across these three players.

While all three played in the San Diego farm system, none of them ever advanced to play at Jack Murphy. 1B John Kuehl made it as far as the High Desert Mavericks (Class A+, California League), and played for Oakland's farm teams. A three-time minor league all-star before injuries abbreviated his baseball career, he went on the be a regional scout and minor league manager for the A's. Steve Peters came to San Diego, along with Alex Cole, from St. Louis in return for Omar Olivares. Assigned to Las Vegas, he would find himself in the Ranger minor league system a year later. Bill Meury, a 20th round Padres pick in the 1990 MLB June Amateur Draft, got as far as AA Wichita, before leaving baseball.

So back to that dilemna - while the latter group never had the opportunity to don a Padres major league uniform, do I include them in my sacred roster of Padres sports cards? Yes they did play for, and/or were drafted by the Padres, but since they never made the MLB roster, should their cards be part of my Padres card collection.

I'm curious. What's your opinion?

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