Sunday, June 14, 2009

Is This the End of Zombie Shakes...Eric Chavez?

Unfortunately, it's the end of Chavez's 2009 season at the least, and perhaps of his career, as the oft-injured Athletics third baseman will have back surgery yet again.

Chavez hasn't played more than 90 games since 2006, and he hasn't been even close to 90 games since 2007. But from 2000 to 2006, he was a perennial Gold Glover who hit for power and was consistently above average in OPS+. Put simply, he was a bright young star in the A's system (despite, incidentally, never making an All-Star team) who got hurt in his prime:

As a fan and an athlete myself (though, as evidenced by the fact that I write about baseball rather than playing it, not much of an athlete in the grand scheme), I hate to see this sort of thing happen to a player; Chavy seemed to have found his groove as a consistently All-Star caliber third baseman (something that, hopefully, voters outside of Oakland would have eventually recognized) when the injury bug bit.

But as much of a shame as it would be to see Chavez forced to walk away from the game so prematurely, it would be even worse to see him ruin his chance at a healthy post-baseball life if he stages an ill-conceived comeback attempt. So here's hoping that whether next year finds Chavez stepping to the plate in uniform to continue his career or in a suit to end it, A's fans give him the standing ovation he deserves.

Best of luck, Eric.

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