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spotlight-on-brian-mccann | March | 2007 Articles

2007 Archives

Spotlight on Brian McCann

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Sign me up for the Brian McCann Fan Club, because I've been a fan since I first saw him play as a freshman at Duluth High School.† Going to high school in Gwinnett County, I got to see quite a few good young players blossom.† McCann has been my favorite to join the Braves.† This time a year ago you would have heard me complain that Francouer was getting too much of the spotlight while McCann was quietly becoming an All-Star.† Don't get me wrong, I love Francouer, and I admired the way he played the game through high school as well.† I just hated to see McCann being overshadowed by Francouer all the time.† McCann never sought the spotlight, but after last season the spotlight certainly found him. This morning I got a call to check out the front page of the Sports section in the AJC.† There, right where he belongs, was Brian McCann.† Perhaps not as exciting as Francouer's SI cover, but he's finally getting his share of the spotlight.† And rightfully so - last season he proved that he's an All-Star caliber catcher and one of the best hitting catchers in MLB.† Going head-to-head with Joe Mauer for the best AVG (advantage Mauer), best OPS (advantage McCann), more extra-base hits (advantage McCann) and best AVG with runners in scoring position and two outs (advantage McCann).† Not only are those numbers impressive when measured against other catchers, but they're impressive when compared against players at every other position.† McCann had the second highest AVG against right-handed pitchers and led the majors with hits with two outs and runners in scoring position.† But McCann doesn't always get the spotlight because behind that boyish smile is a quiet guy who only wants to play the game and be the best.† He's not flashy or outspoken, he just plays the game - and he plays it well.† When I first saw him as a freshman at Duluth High School playing up on the Varsity team, I immediately recognized that this was a kid who just loved to play the game.† While I'm sure he'll make millions over the years, I honestly think he's one of the guys who would play for free.† Remember that movie "For Love of the Game"?† That's the kind of baseball player Brian McCann is.† There's no one on the field these days that I love to watch play the game more than him, and I hope he's in a Braves uniform for many years to come.

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