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David Eckstein isn’t even playing, but he still leads the league in “grit and desire”

Jun 30, 2011, 10:47 AM EDT

eckstein

David Eckstein visited his brother, Washington pitching coach Rick Eckstein, before yesterday’s Nationals-Angels game and told Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times that he’s not officially retired despite turning down multiple offers from teams this offseason.

In fact, Eckstein revealed that he turned down an offer from an undisclosed team last month, although presumably it was for a minor-league contract.

According to Eckstein he decided not to play, instead spending the past few months working for his wife, actress Ashley Drane, but is fine physically and has not ruled out a return at age 36.

DiGiovanna noted that Eckstein “shrugged his shoulders” when asked if he would play again and then wrote the usual Eckstein cliches:

Much of David Eckstein’s value goes well beyond statistics–his grit and desire, his knowledge of and instincts for the game, his clubhouse leadership, his willingness to sacrifice himself for the good of the team by advancing runners with ground-ball outs.

Grit and desire! Clubhouse leadership! Willingness to sacrifice himself for the good of the team!

Funny how the actual MLB teams don’t seem to have quite the same appreciation for that “value” as reporters do. Eckstein made just $850,000 in 2009 and $1 million last season, hitting .263 with a .652 OPS in 252 total games for the Padres. DiGiovanna says “it appeared several teams focused on Eckstein’s statistics, which are not overwhelming.” Imagine that.

  1. Joe - Jun 30, 2011 at 10:53 AM

    As much as I like me the runner-advancing-ground-ball-out, I kind of prefer the runner-advancing-time-on-base.

  2. cur68 - Jun 30, 2011 at 10:59 AM

    Hey they also cited his ‘instincts’. Cool. Maybe paradigm change s creeping slowly in there? Now, if we keep pressing home the change-attack the next write up will be all about his ‘natural talent’ and ‘gifts’ and not so much ‘grit’ because you have to be C.C. Sabathia to have ‘grit’.

    • Joe - Jun 30, 2011 at 11:04 AM

      Sometimes we get some steamers with a lot of grit, but if you soak ‘em for a bit it washes away.

      • cur68 - Jun 30, 2011 at 11:06 AM

        Are you suggesting we soak Sabbathia or soak Eckstien? If the former, I’m out. He’s bigger than me.

  3. ngearhart1981 - Jun 30, 2011 at 11:17 AM

    2 things:
    1 – I always love how it’s implied that he chooses to get an out instead of a hit “for the good of the team”. He should go play for the Reds since Dusty Baker hates base-cloggers.
    2 – Holy crap. Eckstein also leads the league in hot-wife-ness http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0237065/

    • paperlions - Jun 30, 2011 at 12:49 PM

      Women love grit and desire…..and instincts……and MLB salaries

    • bklynbaseball - Jun 30, 2011 at 1:54 PM

      Dude, you need to get out more. She’s kinda cute, but let’s not get ridiculous……….

      • xmatt0926x - Jun 30, 2011 at 2:16 PM

        I’m with you bklynbaseball.

  4. dlevalley - Jun 30, 2011 at 11:19 AM

    “…his grit and desire, his knowledge of and instincts for the game, his clubhouse leadership, his willingness to sacrifice himself for the good of the team by advancing runners with

    ground-ball outs.

    Hit the nail on the head!

  5. spudchukar - Jun 30, 2011 at 11:19 AM

    Somewhere David Eckstein is sitting at home fondling his babe of a wife, polishing his World Series MVP trophy, flashing his Championship Ring, counting his millions and smiling.

    • ngearhart1981 - Jun 30, 2011 at 11:28 AM

      He figured out how to fool all of the people all of the time.

    • pauleee - Jun 30, 2011 at 12:06 PM

      That would be TWO rings. He was with the Angels in ’02.

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