I need a catcher named Dave who can play for the Toronto Blue Jays. Why? Let me explain.
While eagerly anticipating the start of spring training and the World Baseball Classic the other day, this tune popped into my head and I just couldn't shake it. You mght know it, you might not. It was a little ditty by the great Canadian comedy troup "Kids in the Hall" and it was a video bit in their TV show called "These are the Daves I know". The premise was everybody knows someone named Dave and these Dave's pop up in every facet of your everyday life. It was especially funny in my family because we have two brothers-in-law named Dave, though one goes as much by David. The catchy chorus of the tune, is "These are the Daves I know, I know, these are the Daves I know".
What does this have to do with baseball? Well, I took it as a quest to put together an entire Blue Jays team of players from the organization's past and present made up entirely of players named Dave or David.
So here are the Daves I know.
At first base, you can choose between Dave Revering and David Segui. I loved Segui because of his resemblance, particular in manner to the Wrestler and actor, "The Rock".
At second base, you could play Dave Berg, known more for his time with the Marlins, or for Canadian content, Dave McKay.
At shortstop another All-time Blue Jays favourite, the "Little Big Man" David Eckstein, whom then manager Carlos Tosca said played the game the way he wished everyone would.
At third base, you have David Hollins.
A couple of obscure names to be sure, but fairly easy so far.
The outfield features one Hall of Famer, another who deserves more consideration than he received and an up-and-coming manager. I'd put Dave Winfield in left and Dave Parker in right. Winfield drove in the ultimate winnning run in in Game 6 of the 1992 World Series against Atlanta. And for a brief period of time in Pittsburgh, "the Cobra" was the best player in baseball. In centrefield, you'd go with Dave Martinez, now a coach with the Tampa Bay Rays, who should be managing in the not too distant future.
At designated hitter, I'd go with current Blue Jay David Cooper.
Pitching is where this team of Daves really shines. For starters you have Dave Stieb, David Cone, Dave Stewart, David Wells and Dave Lemanczyk.
Heading up the bullpen as closer would be Dave Righetti while rounding out the pen, you have the likes of David Bush, David Carpenter, Dave Freisleben, Dave Geisel, David Purcey and David Pauley.
The interesting thing about these pitchers is that five threw no-hitters over their careers, though all not with the Jays: Cone, Stewart, Wells, Stieb and Righetti. The no-hitters by Cone and Wells were actually perfect games.
Now back to my original statement about the catcher. That's the only position I couldn't fill with a Dave. If I went by family ties, I could stretch it a bit though. Dave McKay's son Cody caught briefly in the Majors with Oakland and St. Louis. But that's as close as I could get.
Feel free to play this name game with any other team and see if you can come up with a more imposing group. If all these guys were in their prime at the same time, this bunch of Daves might actually contend for a World Series.
The name David be the way is of Hebrew origin and means "Beloved", as these players certainly were by Blue Jays fans.
World Class Talent
The Blue Jays will have at least six, maybe seven players involved in the World Baseball Classic. Brett Lawrie will be with Team Canada, R.A. Dickey and J.P. Arencibia with the U.S. and Edwin Encarnacion, Melky Cabrera and Jose Reyes with the Dominican Republic.
Jose Bautista would have loved to play for the Dominican with his three Blue Jays teammates, but coming off serious wrist surgery, the organization did the right thing to keep him out of the event.