The Best Picks of All Time, Part II

By | 2019-03-05

Do you think I should have used “Part II” or “Part 2”? I like the Roman numerals more, but I also don’t want to come off as pretentious.

Read Part I/1 here.

1-19, Marvin “The Martian” Martin (Houston, 2022)

Marvin the Martian was created as the antithesis of Yosemite Sam – Sam was a big*(editor’s note, he wasn’t) and loud, Marvin was small and quiet. Oh, also, Marvin apparently wasn’t given the name Marvin until long after his 1948 debut. All of this is more interesting than Marvin Martin, who has been pretty good for 11 or so seasons now.

1-18, Gerardo Castillo (baby Chicago, 2020)

Gerardo broke into the majors with Atlanta and became “famous” for his 9 catcher ability. Which definitely means something, right? That rating is factored into gameplay and, I don’t know, means pitchers throw more strikes or have more line drives caught or something. Maybe he explains Calvin Beck.

Honorable mention: Joe Aller is only 27, a good hitter, elite runner, and near-elite defender. He’ll pass Gerardo soon enough.

1-17, George Frazier (Atlanta, 2017)

@vancouver_dave can you query who has been traded the most? It’s probably not Frazier, but at six trades I’d guess he’s top 10? Frazier’s been good forever, spending five happy seasons in Vancouver and five happy seasons in Philly. At age 35 he put up a 2.37 ERA in 129 innings for Buckhead. Even at 37 he’s putting up positive WAR in the Vegas bullpen.

1-16, Paul Diaz (Ft. Worth, 2019)

Diaz was legit, he had four 3+ WAR seasons through his age 31 season. Then he hurt his elbow in spring training, missed an entire season, and came back for a few seasons as a crafty lefty. Spent his entire career with the Cattlemen organization, because Scooter is loyal.

1-15, Panda Montana (Boston, 2027)

Burlington, Iowa’s own Panda Montana strikes out a lot of batters (1st or 2nd in 3L Ks each of the last five seasons) and allows a lot of home runs (top 10 in HR allowed the last four seasons). This boom or bust mantra doesn’t remind me of anyone in our league. If not for Robbie Baxter, Montana would likely be a 3L Nudge Ogre Award favorite.

Honorable mention: Rick Mayfield

1-14, Kyle Boddy (Austin, 2025)

Boddy was drafted as a 23 (almost 24) year old, and doing no research I’m willing to say he’s the best old draft pick in the history of USBA. In only his fourth professional season he won the PL Gold Ball, putting up a 2.34 ERA and 5.8 WAR in 180.2 IP.

1-13, Chris McKinney (Las Vegas, 2020)

Chris McKinney is a second all-time in 3L home runs (179) and first all-time in 3L Troys (248). He also has to deal with tbud freaking out over every one of his slumps. Wait is Chris McKinney a Hall of Famer?

Honorable mention: Jon Briddon, Alf “MVP” Pizzaro

1-12, Wes “Two Pitch” Hamm (Phoenix, 2019)

Wes Hamm will be a Hall of Famer. He’s twice led the league in pitcher WAR (SL in 2027, PL in 2031). Since coming to the majors in 2021 he leads the USBA in innings pitched and is fourth in pitching WAR. Even at 35 he’s putting up solid numbers for Seattle, though he’s currently on the DL with a burning shoulder.

1-11, Shigemasa Horiuchi (Kingston Township, 2017)

Horiuchi will also a Hall of Famer. He’s the second-best pitcher in the history of the 3L, the best player in the history of Kingston Township, and the best player to never play in the PL (I think, again I didn’t research that one).