I have to apologize… I was being pretty good about featuring a different candidate each week, I got sidetracked by new releases and life in general, and then I realized “Holy crap, it’s almost opening day and I haven’t finished my EBT posts!”
So far I’ve discussed the Rockies, Cubs, Mariners and Pirates. I had a couple of other candidates in mind, and I’ll run through them quickly before I get to the team I’ve chosen…
Athletics (2011 record: 74-88, 3rd place in the AL West)
Favored Players on 40-man: Brad Peacock
Top 100: Brad Peacock, Jarrod Parker, Chris Carter, Tom Milone¸Collin Cowgill, Graham Godfrey, Yoenis Cespedes, Michael Taylor
Under 5’10”: Jemile Weeks, Collin Cowgill, Fabio Castro (NR)
Mrs. Shlabotnik loves the yellow alts, but the A’s chances of being the EBT took a major hit when they signed Manny.
Royals (71-91, 4th place in AL Central)
Favored Players on 40-man: Bruce Chen, Tim Collins, Jeff Francoeur
Top 100: Johnny Giavotella, Salvador Perez, Lorenzo Cain, Kelvin Herrera, Wil Myers
Under 5’10”: Tim Collins, Johnny Giavotella, Jarrod Dyson, Tony Abreu (NR)
In my much younger days on Long Island, someone tried to sell me Yankees tickets by saying “They’re playing the Royals, so you know it’ll be a good game”. The Royals were a contender for much of my youth, I long for the days when that’s true again… Well, the Kansas City part, anyway. The Yankees can’t begin to suck soon enough for me.
Giants (86-79, 2nd place in NL West)
Favored Players on 40-man: Aubrey Huff (Huff Daddy!), Ryan Theriot (How can you not like a guy whose last name is “The Riot”?), Angel Pagan (How can you not like a guy with a name like a theological debate?)
Top 100: Brandon Belt, Eric Surkamp
Although my mother was a Giants fan (until they left New York, anyway), I’d have a hard time rooting for a team where the closer has a tiny civilization in his beard.
And now, Joe Shlabotnik’s Emergency Backup Team for 2012 is…
The Pittsburgh Pirates
This probably isn’t a surprise to anyone who reads my blog regularly. I realized that between the Emergency Backup Team post and the 1960 World Series post and the Luke Walker post, I’d answered my own question before I realized it myself.
Both the Royals and Mariners are teams I like in general, so they’re sort of the backups to the backups.
So congratulations, Pirates fans! You’ve got an addition to your huddled masses. To celebrate, I will haul out one of my 1974 customs from 4 years ago: