Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Braves Collection: Mike Lum

1980 Topps
I have no interest in criticizing the player that was Mike Lum. He put together a solid, if unremarkable career. The Braves employed him for most of 11 seasons and a portion of a 12th. Judging by the sponsor of his Baseball Reference page, there's at least one individual who counted Lum as his favorite player.

Truth is, I know very little about Mike Lum and the statistics tell me nothing. That's the thing about a bench player. Unless you can specifically remember the player and their contribution, they got lost in a sea of mediocre to bad numbers. Look at Diory Hernandez's numbers for last season. They look either awful or at best, inconsequential. Still, he kicked off a rally against the Nationals on August 17th with his only home run. Without that homer, maybe the rally never gets started. Maybe the Braves don't win the game. Maybe the Padres are in the post season. Maybe.

Of course, he isn't the only Brave we can remember winning games despite overall statistics that don't impress. Francisco Cabrera or Mike Mordecai anyone?

No, I don't know Mike Lum, but if he spent 14 years in the big leagues, I know this: he was providing value somewhere. I guarantee you he had his fans. Me? I have his ball cards.

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