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Mr. ________

Mar 18, 2013, 1:34 PM EDT

Mr. Mister

We all know that Jeff Conine is “Mr. Marlin.”  At least I hope we know that, because that sort of thing is worth knowing. But who is the “Mr.____” of all the other teams? Rob Neyer takes a stab at it today over at Baseball Nation. And it’s a pretty good stab.

There are a few some might take issue with, of course. I bet if you asked 100 Reds fans of a certain age who their “Mr. Red” is 87 of them would say Pete Rose and not Johnny Bench, but since Rose is excluded from everything else I get why he’s excluded here. I tend to think that “Mr. Yankee” should be someone who never wore another team’s uniform, so I’d probably go with Gehrig or DiMaggio over Ruth. After all, this isn’t about the best player, just the one that typifies the franchise in some important way.

Anyway, fun mental exercise.

  1. byjiminy - Mar 18, 2013 at 1:44 PM

    You’re disqualifying Babe Ruth because he played for another team? What typifies the Yankees more than plucking stars from other teams?

    • ugglasforearms - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:44 PM

      Let’s give the Babe “Mr. Baseball” and Lou can be “Mr. Yankee”.

    • atribecalledquestec - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:59 PM

      And Joe DiMaggio can be Mr. Coffee.

      • ugglasforearms - Mar 18, 2013 at 3:04 PM

        Great one!! Well done.

  2. evan5 - Mar 18, 2013 at 1:50 PM

    For the Tigers it’s Al Kaline, hands down.

    Before that it might have been Ty Cobb, though I wasn’t around to know for sure.

    • evan5 - Mar 18, 2013 at 1:54 PM

      The interesting question regarding the Tigers is: Will Miguel Cabrera take over the Mr. Tiger crown after it’s all said and done with him?

      He’s one of the best to ever wear the Old English D, but I think the fact that he is A. Not American and B. Not brought up through the Tigers organization may prevent him for taking Kaline’s spot. It’s a topic that warrants discussion among Tiger fans.

      • seattlej - Mar 18, 2013 at 4:35 PM

        ¿So what are you saying here — he has to be Señor Tigre?

      • kalinedrive - Mar 18, 2013 at 4:40 PM

        Al Kaline is pretty much “officially” known as Mr. Tiger. It has been a name applied to him for decades. I have a set of commemorative cards outlining his career, and the box has “Mr. Tiger” on it.

        He played 22 seasons in Detroit, and was also a television broadcaster with the team and has been a special assistant in the front office for a long time. He is an icon in Detroit. He will always be Mr. Tiger.

  3. billyboots - Mar 18, 2013 at 1:53 PM

    Harmon Killebrew will always be “Killer” to Twins fans. Kirby Puckett would be more likely, but I think the best fit would be Kent Hrbek. He is home grown, helped the team win two World Series titles, never wore another uniform, and we already retired his number.

    And besides, who can argue with a guy that rides a boat through a Taco Johns.

    • voteforno6 - Mar 18, 2013 at 1:55 PM

      Awesome…Hrbek was my second-favorite player on those Twins teams from the ’80s and ’90s.

    • jarathen - Mar 18, 2013 at 1:56 PM

      Taco John’s is the worst. And yet every woman I know loves the place.

  4. pjmitch - Mar 18, 2013 at 1:54 PM

    For the Mets, he is right, it is Mr. Met but if you had to pick a real player it would be Ed Kranepool. Before you give me a thumbs down, Tom Seaver was the “Franchise” not Mr. Met

  5. cur68 - Mar 18, 2013 at 1:56 PM

    Corporal Maxwell Q. Klinger: Mr. Mud Hen

    • mybrunoblog - Mar 18, 2013 at 3:43 PM

      When I was a kid I always thought Klinger was wearing a Texas Rangers hat. Loved MASH

  6. jarathen - Mar 18, 2013 at 1:57 PM

    That Kernel guy is dead-on right. Tim Salmon is the right Mr. Angel. Also, I’m Kernel.

    • mjvincent125 - Mar 18, 2013 at 3:31 PM

      As a longtime Angel fan, Jim Fregosi was the correct choice for the Angels.

      • jarathen - Mar 18, 2013 at 3:45 PM

        I understand that Fregosi was a huge part of the Angels as they emerged from the expansionist ooze, but he didn’t play as long as Salmon, wasn’t a career Angel, and was never around for the kind of success Salmon was. It may be a generational thing, and I understand that.

  7. jwbiii - Mar 18, 2013 at 1:59 PM

    Gotta go with Ashburn over Schmidt for the Mr. Phillie. He’s got this going for him, too:

    And yes, I grabbed that from your new colleague’s site.

    • DelawarePhilliesFan - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:39 PM

      Gotta agree – Whitey is Mr. Phillie. With all due respect to Neyer, he showed some ignornace on that one. On strict accomplishment alone – sure, Schmidt gets the nod. But as much as I love the guy, he was way too much a cool customer to be “Mr. Phillie”. Add in being thin skinned in a town full of bullies….and nah, he can’t be Mr. Phillie.

      His Whiteness on the other hand – thats a no brainer

    • ochospantalones - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:42 PM

      As a lifelong Phillies fan, I have to say jwbiii is correct. This may seem odd to outsiders, but Mr. Phillie is undoubtedly Richie Ashburn. Schmidt was never fully accepted by the fans, while Whitey was revered as a broadcaster well past his playing days (I am far too young to have ever seen him play). It’s not an accident that Ashburn got the concourse in the ballpark named after him and Schmidt only got a sandwich.

  8. deathmonkey41 - Mar 18, 2013 at 1:59 PM

    Mike Schmidt as Mr. Phillie? Really? Has everyone forgotten Adam Eaton already?

    • jarathen - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:02 PM

      And yet there’s no discussion of Mitch “Wild Thing” Williams.

    • DelawarePhilliesFan - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:34 PM

      Unfortunately – I have not forgotten Adam Eaton

  9. proudlycanadian - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:05 PM

    Gary Carter for The Expos. I am torn between Joe Carter or Robbie Alomar for the Jays.

    • cur68 - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:15 PM


    • misterchainbluelightning - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:57 PM

      Rusty Staub would give Carter a run for his money in Montreal

      • proudlycanadian - Mar 18, 2013 at 3:00 PM

        You are right. Le Grand Orange was the Man.

    • tycobb420 - Mar 18, 2013 at 3:05 PM

      I know where you’re coming from, but I think Stieb is the right choice for the Jays. Remember when he was the only thing going for us back in the early 80’s? Our first real star? Then Gillick built that really good team around him. Don’t know why, but I’ll always regret that the Stieb / Key / Clancy / Fernandez / Bell / Moseby / Barfield / Upshaw Jays didn’t win the series first. Joe and Robbie were great, but they played too much of their careers with other teams, I think. Actually, Paul Beeston is probably Mr. Blue Jay. Or Jerry Howarth.

  10. cosanostra71 - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:11 PM

    Have to agree with the commenter on the other website that Tim Salmon is Mr Angel

    • jarathen - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:12 PM

      That rakish devil!

  11. raysfan1 - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:14 PM

    I grew up a Reds fan, and there is no question Neyer got it right–Bench is Mr Red. Rose was a lot less fan-friendly; besides, he left.

    As for the Rays, I presume he has a “provisional” tag on Longoria solely because he is still active. However, he will play his whole career as a Ray, so I think the provisional part can be dropped.

    • indaburg - Mar 18, 2013 at 3:07 PM

      I agree–the provisional part doesn’t make sense. If Mr. Ray was Price it would make sense, but Longoria seems to be Mr. Ray for the long term with his extension.

  12. sdelmonte - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:38 PM

    Ruth, Mantle, DiMaggio were better players. But isn’t Yogi both an all time great and a mascot of sorts?

  13. Old Hoss Radbourn - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:39 PM

    I am Mr. Gray.

    • unclemosesgreen - Mar 18, 2013 at 4:46 PM

      I am sorry sir, but I have it on good authority that Charlie Sweeney was the real Mr. Gray. Did he not strike out 19 batters in one game with an unhittable fadeaway?

    • jwbiii - Mar 18, 2013 at 4:51 PM

      Some guy on some other job is Mr. Gray. You’re Mr. Pink!

  14. rjmarrella - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:42 PM

    Rick Schu: Mr. Phillie

  15. joshfrancis50 - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:43 PM

    As a Reds fan I’d say Pete Rose, but excluding Pete, I’d say no one is more beloved in Cincinnati than Barry Larkin. He was a champion, an MVP, a “local boy done good” and generally a fan favorite. Perhaps that’s generational, given my age, but I don’t see the love in Cincy for Bench compare to what Barry Larkin gets.

    • mybrunoblog - Mar 18, 2013 at 4:51 PM

      Your probably right about Larkin being more well liked. I think it has to do with the way baseball and our society has changed. When guys used to retire that was it. They were gone. Our memories were forever. Maybe you see them at old timers day or a grocery store opening but mostly they were gone. Nowadays, these guys stick around. More media, card shows, paid endorsements, fantasy camps, etc. and as fans we really get a better sense of what these guys are really like.
      Maybe the fans found out that a guy like Bench is a bit of a tool bag. Larkin on the other hand is pretty friendly, no extra baggage and looks like he could still play 9 innings.

      • raysfan1 - Mar 18, 2013 at 8:01 PM

        Bench was and is a great guy. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting him a few times, and he was always friendly and accommodating to the fans present.

  16. DelawarePhilliesFan - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:45 PM

    Not a slight on Honus Wagner, but I have to go with Willie Stargel as Mr. Pirate

  17. phillyfan75 - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:46 PM

    Can’t be too critical of his selection of Michael Jack, but I’d probably give the edge to Richie Ashburn. Played from 1948 to 1959 and then broadcast games from 1963 until he died in 1997.

  18. seitz26 - Mar 18, 2013 at 2:53 PM

    Mr. Angel is Tim Salmon, and nobody else is really very close, except maybe Garret Anderson.

  19. joshfrancis50 - Mar 18, 2013 at 3:02 PM

    The most Mr. Angel thing ever was when Reggie Jackson was hypnotized and tried to kill the Queen Mother, so…yeah, I think its Reggie.

    • deathmonkey41 - Mar 18, 2013 at 3:14 PM

      Luckily Enrico Palazzo was there to save her!

    • jarathen - Mar 18, 2013 at 3:16 PM

      What. He was an Angel for five seasons, same as Yankees and half as many seasons as the Athletics. His aggregate OPS+ of 114 wasn’t terrible, but it also didn’t define a franchise, at least not after five seasons (though 1982 was a great year).

      Even including his “comeback” year (which wasn’t great by most any measure – he didn’t embarrass himself, but that’s really it), Tim Salmon’s lifetime OPS+ is 128. Also won the first Rookie of the Year by an Angel as well as a Silver Slugger.

      Also: that dreamy smile.

  20. kaoticbandito - Mar 18, 2013 at 3:21 PM

    How can Mr. Blue Jay not be Dave Stieb?

  21. elmo - Mar 18, 2013 at 3:26 PM

    Mr. Senators: Walter Johnson.

  22. natstowngreg - Mar 18, 2013 at 3:47 PM

    Granted, not much history on which to base this, but Ryan Zimmerman is Mr. National. Bryce Harper may well be in a year or two, but not yet.

    • billyboots - Mar 18, 2013 at 3:58 PM

      I thought Matthew LeCroy was Mr. National after he made Frank Robinson sob like a baby.

  23. deathmonkey41 - Mar 18, 2013 at 3:55 PM

    Shouldn’t Mr. Met be Bobby Bonilla since he’ll be on their payroll until the end of time?

  24. buddaley - Mar 18, 2013 at 3:57 PM

    I think the Dodgers might prefer it to be Pee Wee Reese. Maybe Jackie Robinson or Gil Hodges, but Reese was the captain in those glory years.

    And might not the Pirates consider Clemente?

    Lajoie is a good choice, but while in his time he was the foremost figure for the team, I think Feller might be more recognizable as Mr. Indian today.

  25. phillyphannn83 - Mar 18, 2013 at 5:06 PM

    How is Mr. Oriole not Cal Ripken Jr.?

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