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Happy birthday, Pudge Rodriguez

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Happy birthday to one of the best catchers in baseball history

Ronald Martinez

Happy birthday to Pudge Rodriguez, who turns 42 today.

Pudge Rodriguez was signed by the Rangers as an amateur free agent out of Puerto Rico in 1988 (this was before Puerto Rican players became subject to the draft), and debuted in the majors just three years later as a 19 year old promoted straight out of AA, and was called up to the majors on the day he was getting married.

Pudge ended up spending 21 years in the major leagues, accumulating the third highest bWAR of any catcher in major league history, and the second highest fWAR in major league history.

One would think he will be elected to the Hall of Fame in 2016, the first year he will be eligible and on the ballot.

I'm very happy that, despite an acrimonious split when he left as a free agent after the 2002 season, he's come back to Texas to be part of the Rangers organization now. And I'm still mad at John Hart for not offering him arbitration as a free agent.