There’s a reason it sounds like everybody hates Carlos Ruiz. His name and nickname have the “-ue” sound in them, and in the Citizens Bank Park official rule doctrine, the signature cheer for each of his successes and/or announcements including his name must sound like “BOOOOOOOO!!”
But it’s a congratulatory hullabaloo becoming more and more common over the past few years. Finally, other people are starting to notice the noise.
You probably remember him from all the passionate embraces with Brad Lidge and Roy Halladay through the years.
Chooch doesn’t need vindication at the end hands of Jayson Stark to know he’s becoming one of the most villainous catchers in the National League. He may not be one of the four newly acquired superpowers, but he’s the guiding hand to their performances, finger by finger. Everybody who pitches to Carlos has just a great old time.
Whether he needed it or not, Chooch garnered enough screams and claps in 2010 for Stark to illuminate him as one of the unknown worth knowing.
After going through an offensive growth spurt in 2010, Chooch was chilling in the eight-hole with his game calling shining through the starters. He beat his highest season BA by .43 points, played in the most amount of games in his career, and finished 17th in MVP voting.
What does that mean? Well, it means he makes it onto Stark’s All-Underrated Team, which catalogs the most tragically unheard of talents in all of baseball, presenting a case for guys like Mike Adams and Michael Cuddyer and Chooch to be appreciated more. It means people getting what they deserve. It means a better world for us all.
Nothing. It means nothing. But Chooch is great.