Must be Gibbons Again. . .

YKI’s first impression of Jay Gibbons was back when YKI was residing in Washington, D.C., and essentially adopting – for the summer, at least – the Orioles as an erstaz ‘home team.’ One of the charming ads on television showed Gibbons bashing balls off of the famed Warehouse outside of Camden Yards, prompting a telephone operator to say, Must Be Gibbons Again.”

The commercial kind of made me laugh – who is this Gibbons guy and why is he so deserving of his own spot to prop up a (mid)major market team? He answered with 28 dingers that season for the lowly O’s, and 23 the following year. . .but in 2007 was out of the game, perhaps blackballed for being named in the Mitchell Report.
https://i1.wp.com/upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/c0/0923_052c_Jay_Gibbons.jpg/280px-0923_052c_Jay_Gibbons.jpg

Now that he’s back on the Dodgers (replacing the woebegone Garret Anderson), Gibbons is starting to hit – and prove that he belongs in the Majors again.

Though this season is mostly a wash for the Dodgers, Gibbons is a bright spot – beloved (by teammates and apparently, fans) Gibbons emerged from his relegation to contribute mightily in his first few appearances. Is he a long-term answer for the Boys in Chavez Ravine? Not really – but the story of how he caught the eye of Big League ballclubs brought a smile to my face, so YKI wanted to share:

The following is the full text of a letter written by former Orioles outfielder Jay Gibbons to all 30 major league teams, seeking a minor league contract. Gibbons, who was named in the Mitchell report, has been without a job since Baltimore released him in March. You can find the letter here.

“All I need is a chance”

Writing this letter is both painful and humiliating. It has been almost six weeks since my release from the Orioles and I am still unable to land any opportunity at a second chance to play the game that I love. I am young, healthy and determined. I have acknowledged and apologized for the mistake that I made and writing this letter should be proof enough that I have indeed suffered for my mistake. I have faith and hope that some team will give me the chance to prove that I can not only be a productive player but also be a stellar member of their organization. My faith in a second chance has inspired me to work harder than I have at any time in my life.

My faith has gotten me through this most difficult period in my life. All I need is a chance — any chance — anywhere. I am more than willing to begin the process of proving that I can and will be a productive major league player by playing in the minor leagues. As you know, I have played seven seasons in the big leagues and have hit 20-plus homeruns in three seasons and have hit .277 in three seasons (2003, 2005 and 2006). At 31 years old, I have NO DOUBT that my best baseball is ahead of me. I know that my agents at ACES have tried to land me an opportunity in the minor leagues but have been met with negative responses by each and every Organization. I am not blind to the fact that I have made a mistake and that mistake has raised doubt about my character and ability. It is important that you know that my indiscretions, while regretful, were made in an effort to heal a nagging wrist injury. I would encourage you to speak with anyone in this game, including players, coaches, front office etc. who know me. I am confident that everyone you speak with will vouch for my character.

I respectfully and humbly request that you grant me the chance to play for your organization. I am so willing to prove myself as a player, and a person, that I will donate ALL of my minor league earnings to your Club’s charity. In the event that I earn the right to play at the major league level, I will gladly donate a significant sum to that same charity. Once again, all I need is a chance and I will prove that I can be an extremely productive player and a great addition to your organization. Please feel free to contact me directly [phone numbers redacted]. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Sincerely, Jay Gibbons

https://i1.wp.com/www.latimes.com/media/photo/2010-08/55502690.jpg

Touching, and well done by Mr. Gibbons. Here’s to finishing off the season strong and looking forward to him finding a permanent home in the Big Leagues, where he belongs.

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