The last thing the baseballblogosphere needs is another cleverly-named projection system for players. And that's exactly why we at Walkoff Walk decided to add our collective voice to the statistical noise: we're just a bunch of jerks. Introducing the first-ever player projection forecasting system that dispenses with the OBPs and the FIPs, instead deciding to group every single player by age and write something mildly interesting about them. We call it BONILLA, or Based On Nothing Interesting, Let's Look At Age.
Click here to check out all the BONILLA age projections.
Today, in no particular order, we look at players born in 1976:
Michael Barrett, C: Has his arsenal of haymakers and left hooks stowed away under his passport as he crosses the northern border to join up with the Blue Jays organization for aught-nine. This will be his twelfth season without a playoff appearance. One day he will be on the Hall of Fame ballot.
Lance Berkman, 1B: Has received dozens upon dozens of MVP votes in the last seven seasons but is resigned to be just the second (third?!?) best first baseman in his own division. Fat Elvis hates the nickname Fat Elvis.
Pat Burrell, DH: As a Ray, disappointingly will lose his bevy of annual games versus the Mets, hurting his chances to improve on his 41 career tots versus the Flushing franchise. Will still find a way to torture Billy Wagner, probably with lawn darts.
Eric Byrnes, LF: Completes the typical Rob Dibble exacta of being a shitty banged-up ballplayer and a shitty broadcaster. Will spend 2009 rehabbing injuries he hasn't had yet and quilting a patch for the AIDS quilt.
Scott Downs, RP: Has a very famous syndrome named after him. Yes, it's true: Scott Syndrome, or the inability of people named Scott to not be total toolbags, is named after Scott Downs.
Brandon Duckworth, RP Q: What's a Brandon Duckworth? A: To Dayton Moore, about $600,000. HACK JOKE ALERT
Kyle Farnsworth, RP: Q: What's a Kyle Farnsworth? A: To Dayton Moore, about $9,250,000. Seriously, Royals, what's up with you employing relievers whose last names end with -worth?
Troy Glaus, 3B: Snickers every time he hears the phrases "pitchers mound" or "batters box" because really, to Troy Glaus, everything is about female anatomy. Just had shoulder surgery, so don't pencil him in your Opening Day lineup, LaRussa.
Ross Gload, 1B: Is the single most successful Gload to emerge from the Gload family of Brooklyn, New York, even taking into consideration Ross' older sister Suzette, who you may know by her stage name, Donna Summer.
Jason Grilli, RP: Perhaps the single most effective reliever in the Tigers organization last year, which fully explains why they traded him to the Rockies. Broke Charles Nagy's Big East record for most strikeouts in a game with 18 while at Seton Hall back in '97. Is my guinea dago paisan.
Vlad Guerrero, RF: Like the process or not, he's received MVP votes every year of his career since his rookie campaign in 1997. Is so toolsy he might as well be named Scott.
Jerry Hairston, LF: Brother of Scott Hairston, Son of Jerry Hairston, Grandson of Sammy Hairston, and Nephew of Johnny Hairston. Was one of the most productive players on the Reds last year despite playing just 80 games.
Wes Helms, 3B: From his Wikipedia entry, "Often considered to be in the fraternity of "Country Strong" big league players with the likes of Matt Stairs and Adam Dunn." Translation: when on the road in Detroit, won't leave the hotel after sunset.
Ramon Hernandez, C: Perfectly expendable by the Orioles because of the ascent of Matt Wieters, much to the delight of new manager Dusty Baker, who admires Ramon for his grit and ability to wear a catchers mask while dangling a toothpick from his maw.
Aubrey Huff, DH/3B: Once referred to Baltimore as "a horseshit city" which might offend Baltimoreans but is actually the Gaelic translation of the name. Bael ti Mhoir, meaning "city where horses shit".
Adam Kennedy, 2B: Better than you think, unless you think he's an slightly above-average middle infielder with a good eye and some speed. In that case, you're giving the kid way too much credit. Take off those rose-colored glasses!
Paul Konerko, 1B: Peaked at 30, just like all the statnerds told us he would. Is still good for thirty ding-dongs a year and workmanlike glovework at first base and the weekly bouquet of gladiolas in the ChiSox clubhouse.
Carlos Lee, LF: Nicknamed El Caballo, or the wild horse, and has a fan club in Houston called "Los Caballitos", or the little horse turdlets. Enjoys skiing in his native Panama despite the total lack of snow.
Ted Lilly, SP: Is the kind of guy who promises to help you hang your new flat screen TV and then stops by one day with a drywall saw and a twelve pack and then gets wasted after doing some cutting and you end up playing three hours of Madden on the Xbox and then he leaves and you're stuck with a hole in your wall for three weeks because you're too much of a pansy to hang a 50 pound TV by yourself.
Scott Linebrink, RP: Beat Scott Syndrome at the age of 13 when he discovered Depeche Mode at his local record shop. Gave up after "Songs of Faith and Devotion" in '93.
Jason Michaels, OF: Has now had three teams waiting for him to emerge as a valuable everyday player with the fourth team (Astros) getting ready to figure it out in 2009. Arrested in 2005 for assaulting a Philly cop, a violation that is deemed worthy of a wrist slap since he only got probation.
Carl Pavano, SP: Still using a 1997 Gateway desktop with just 256KB of RAM which still plays a fine game of Minesweeper, thank you very much. Allegedly is getting paid to "start" baseball "games" by the "Cleveland" Indians.
A.J. Pierzynski, C: Despite not growing up in Chicago, his favorite sportswriter growing up was Jerome Holtzman. Lost any remaining shred of self-respect when he got involved in professional wrestling in 2006.
Sidney Ponson, SP: Has had more career DUIs than Cy Young Award votes and has somehow convinced Brian Cashman to sign him on two separate occasions. Will be spending the 2009 season doing odd jobs around Nolan Ryan's ranch house.
J.C. Romero, RP: Given his latest troubles with the illegal supplements he accidentally ingested, J.C. refuses to shop at GNC anymore, preferring to purchase his vitamins and energy boosters at the local twigs-n-berries health food store. When told he was actually taking daily doses of lizard semen, he shrugged his shoulders and ate more lizard semen.
Alfonso Soriano, LF: Geez, Alfonso Soriano is turning 33? Now I really feel old.
Javier Vazquez, SP: Along with Derek Lowe, will be asked to anchor an otherwise inexperienced Braves rotation. Is considering asking Derek to join up with his cousin Tito and form a three-piece salsa band but doubts any of them can play anything but the maracas.
Ramon Vazquez, Util: The absolute definition of a journeyman. No, really, he plays keyboards for the band Journey. Any way Ramon wants it, that's the way he needs it.
Randy Wolf, SP: Still waiting for the inevitable contract offer from Ned Colletti after compiling a super-sexy 12-12 record in 2008 with a 4.30 ERA. Hey, he's a lefty. Those things are rare. The only player in baseball history to have Tommy John surgery on his John Thomas.
Brad Lidge, RP: Is made of magic and hasn't blown a save since the day Fukuda was elected Prime Minister of Japan.
Pedro Feliciano, RP: Has had two three-year stints with the Mets that surrounded his 2006 season spent with the Fukuoka Softbank Hawks. Didn't vote for Fukuda.
Aaron Miles, Util: Is a Cub now because St Louis fans kept confusing him with Adam Kennedy. Almost played for the Greek team in the 2004 Olympics but gave it all up to play pro ball with the Rockies. TYPICAL GREEK BEHAVIOR.
Reed Johnson, OF: Is the all time leader in homers hit by players named "Reed". Is also the only player ever named "Reed". Doesn't hit well enough to be a below-average corner outfielder, but that's your problem, Cubs fans.
Matt Treanor, C: Moving from Florida to Michigan to play for the Tigers has caused strain in his marriage since his volleyball-playing wife hates Michigan. Well, Matt, what did you expect? Everyone hates Michigan.