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Lengthy....but quiet.....careers


HedleyLamarr

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Earlier in the week, I was watching one of those 30-for-30 films on ESPN, and left the TV on that channel. I saw the highlights for that night's Rays game, and heard a name I hadn't heard in quite some time.....Jamey Wright. So I looked it up, and sure enough, it's the same guy. Looking up his career stats, and he's bounced around quite a bit the last few seasons. But he's pitching in his 18th season, yet won't have the stats to get anywhere near the Hall of Fame. I mainly remember him from his days in Colorado, and it always felt like the Braves would jump out to a 5-0 on this guy, yet he'd still make it to the 7th inning and wind up in a position of being the winning pitcher.

Got any other examples of players (preferably those still active) that have had lengthy playing careers, but most likely won't be in their sport's Hall?

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Pat Mannelly, Bears longsnapper. Drafted by Chicago in 1998, and now has the most games played of any Bear ever. Integral part of special teams and has anchored the kicking game for 15 years and counting.

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Lyle Overbay would seem to fit this description perfectly, too.

Reggie Sanders bounced around the league a ton during the late '90s/early '00s, and was almost always somewhat productive.

Pat Mannelly, Bears longsnapper. Drafted by Chicago in 1998, and now has the most games played of any Bear ever. Integral part of special teams and has anchored the kicking game for 15 years and counting.

David Binn was the Chargers equivalent of this. A good long snapper can have a great shelf life, because their salaries will never be exorbitant, and as long as they can, well, snap the ball with effectiveness to the holder and ably block, there's no need for a team to ever replace them.

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As far as relievers go, who are good at toiling in obscurity for years, I think of Terry Mulholland, Mike Stanton, and of course Captain Wacky, later renamed Mike Marshall.

Cliff Ronning hung out in the NHL for like 20 years and never really did anything.

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Hank White! I enjoyed his work with the Cubs.

Kyle Farnsworth is in his fifteenth season, which is remarkable when you consider that not many pitchers last 15 seasons, and that Kyle Farnsworth is only known for being terrible.

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Well, Kyle Farnsworth did have, like, those five months in 2011 where Rays Magic turned him into a shutdown closer. I was thrilled that the magic eventually died, and now Fernando Rodney seems to be going through the exact same problem.

Henry Blanco is only playing baseball now because he can catch R.A. Dickey's knucklers. Doug Mirabelli was basically the same guy, in that respect. I actually remember when Boston re-acquired him in 2006, and basically gave him a police escort to get to Fenway in time for a game. It was strangely hilarious.

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But he didn't do anything particularly remarkable. 26 years as a pro, averaging 10 wins a year? That's a poster child for mediocrity right there.

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This is kinda funny because I got a text from my buddy yesterday saying his seats were by the Mets bullpen and he was right next to LaTroy Hawkins. I couldn't believe that he was still in the majors. Right now, he's 40 years old and in his 19th season in the majors. Pretty amazing for a right-handed reliever with the very mediocre numbers he has.

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Marc Calixte played 10 years for the Calgary Stampeders as a special teams guy, I'm pretty sure he was on every special team. He retired after last season because he blew out his knee in the Labour Day game and didn't play the rest of the season.

He was the longest serving Stampeder and very few people knew.

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I can't think of anyone that would top Jamey Wright in terms of being able to stick around without actually doing anything. He's like the plastic plant at your local office. You not sure how it got there, it has almost zero useful purpose, yet you still know its going to be around long after your gone.

Julian Taverez is about the next closest I can come up with. Effectively a 16 year major league career. Never top ten in any major pitching category for any of those seasons. Again office plant like career. Showed up. Not much to say beyond that either in the positive or negative.

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I have wondered how many interior O-Linemen have careers like this since you don' hear their names called a lot unless they have a lot of penalties called on them.

For example.... Brad Meester, the Jaguars center is entering his 13th year for the Jags and has played in 193 games for them, leading the team in games played. And I doubt he will ever sniff the HoF.

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