Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Who are the "Faces" of each Franchise?

Every franchise has a "face", a player who takes responsibility for the team's struggles and pushes credit towards his teammates, a player who represents the management's goals, a role model for fans, but most importantly, a leader of his team.  More often than not, there is a clear cut choice for the "face of the franchise", but some teams are in search of this player that can help transfrom his ballclub into a contender.  Here are who I consider to be the "faces" of each MLB team.  Feel free to comment and let me know if you disagree with any selections!

AL East:

Yankees - Derek Jeter  (could it be anybody else?)

Red Sox - David Ortiz - been there through the thick and thin amidst steroid allegations, but fans love him

Blue Jays- Jose Bautista - has emerged as a superstar

Orioles - Brian Roberts

Rays - Evan Longoria

AL Central:

Tigers - Justin Verlander

White Sox - Mark Buehrle

Royals - Billy Butler

Indians - Grady Sizemore

Twins - Joe Mauer

AL West:

Rangers - Josh Hamilton

Athletics -  GM Billy Beane - there is no player that jumps out for the A's, but Billy Beane's Moneyball strategy will always be the most important factor of the Athletics

Mariners - Ichiro Suzuki

Angels - Jered Weaver

NL East:

Phillies - Jimmy Rollins - may not be the best player, but has been there way to long not to be "face"

Mets - David Wright / Jose Reyes - Wright is more vocal, but Reyes is the better player right now

Braves - Chipper Jones - not even a question

Nationals - Ryan Zimmerman

Marlins - Hanley Ramirez - though Josh Johnson is a close second

NL Central

Cubs - Carlos Zambrano - Starlin Castro could be the next one, but for now Big Z is still the man

Cardinals - Albert Pujols

Pirates - Andrew McCutchen - not exactly a household name, but he's a highly talented player

Astros - Hunter Pence - not an easy selection with Michael Bourn and Carlos Lee also options

Brewers - Ryan Braun

Reds - Joey Votto

NL West

Padres - Heath Bell - looking through the roster, even Bell is a stretch to be called a "face" of a franchise

Rockies - Troy Tulowitzki - CarGo may be the best player, but Tulo is every GM's dream

Giants - Tim Lincecum - recently injured Buster Posey is right there with him

Dodgers - Matt Kemp - though Kershaw, Ethier, Broxton and Billingsley are all young stars, Matt Kemp demonstrates the complete package of a "face"

Diamondbacks - Stephen Drew - Chris Young and Justin Upton are logical choices, but Drew has been on the team longer and been more successful

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