The White Sox started 2009 with DeWayne Wise playing centerfield. That didn’t work, so the Sox tried Jerry Owens. And when Owens didn’t pan out, Chicago went to Plan C: Scott Podsednik.
For years, the team’s centerfield carousel has been a source of frustration. The Sox haven’t enjoyed a full season of CF goodness since 2004, when Aaron Rowand roamed the middle outfield grass. Since then, in addition to Owens, Podsednik and Wise, they’ve tried Nook Logan, Nick Swisher and Brian Anderson.
The White Sox aren’t the only organization who have struggled to fill a specific position. Far from it.
Let’s take a look at some other organizations and their positions of futility:
Braves (LF): This winter, the Braves signed Garret Anderson to play left field. So far, Anderson has hit .191 with 6 runs and 4 RBI in 16 games. Before Anderson came along the Braves went with a Matt Diaz/other guy platoon in left, and before that Kelly Johnson got a shot, and before that…well whaddya know! Dewayne Wise played a little left for Atlanta in 2004. You have to go back to 2003, when Chipper “Don’t call me Hoss” Jones played there, to find a decent full-time LF in Atlanta.
Red Sox (SS): For the better part of nine seasons the Red Sox had an elite shortstop. His name was Nomar. In 2004 the Sox traded Nomar to the Cubs, and then Boston won its first World Series in nearly 90 years. But they haven’t had a good shortstop since. In fact, they’ve had the opposite of a good shortstop — Julio Lugo.
Royals (1B): It seems they’ve had plenty of opportunities to fill the position with somebody capable, but have instead insisted on the likes of Ross Gload and Mike Jacobs. Kansas City hasn’t had a really good 1B since the 2002 version of Mike Sweeney.
Mariners (DH): For a while, the M’s had the best DH — Mr. Edgar Martinez. Since Edgar’s departure, the Mariners have filled the position with a cast of lesser beings, bottoming out with Jose Vidro in 2007-2008.
Tigers (LF): The Tigers suffered through several seasons of Craig Monroe and his consistently sub-.300 OBP. They really haven’t had even a decent LF since Bobby Higginson in 2001.
Giants (1B): Since JT Snow left after 2005, it’s been a total black hole with a parade of incompetents like Lance Niekro, Rich Aurelia, Shea Hillenbrand, post-steroids Ryan Klesko (a mere 6 homers in ’07), John Bowker, and now Travis Ishikawa.
Can you think of any positions of futility that we missed? Let us know in the comments section.