Archive for June 19th, 2009

More Rosenblatt Memories

I went to the College World Series to write about Rosenblatt Stadium for ESPN.com. Even though you’ve seen my massive, hard-drive crushing photo display already, here’s the more polished words I wrote there:

A Year Long Swan Song

OK, self-promotion over. Off to work on the next Z-Meter.

Every stathead minor league watcher has an underdog to root for.

Some would call this phenomenon the Ken Phelps all-star, but there is always someone who shines on above the rest. You can call them the Ken Phelps of the minors. Now, like Geronimo Berroa or Mike Lowell? These guys usually make their way to the bigs. And someone always emerges to fill the gap.

Now you are a literate, hip audience, so I’m not going to act you never heard of this gentleman before. But seeing as Nelson Cruz has made his way to the show with such grace and power, and seeing as OMDQ didn’t immeadiately flash on him. Ladies and gentleman, feast your eyes on Chris Heisey.

Seed of lightning. Roar of thunder.

Heisey!

He was the 22nd ranked prospect in the Reds organization going into this season. He did not warrant a mention in Baseball Prospectus or from the Shandler camp. But unlike more heralded prospects, Chris Heisey actually got his education at Messiah College.

But before this season? He was known as merely a versatile 4th outfielder type. He generated doubles, got steals, and Eric Byrnes’d his way through the outfield. But at 24, in his first full season at Double-A, his skills have exploded.

The speed is still the same, but he’s already surpassed his career home run total with 13 on the year. Which considering that Sarasota and Carolina have generated similar offensive production in their history? He’s hitting double-doubles. And while he has a .365 average, and that won’t last? He can put up a .900 OPS if he keeps it up.

He’s 24 years old and he’s had to work for everything he’s had. This means the mainstream media should like him. He has an isolated OPS that’s over .300. That means statheads should like him. I bestow upon Bus Leagues Baseball the next overaged stud.

Believe in him.