A lot of Vipers got positive press in 2008 for the right reasons, as I’ve mentioned in previous posts:
- Drew Miller swung a big bat and took his iron man streak as far as he could
- GLROTY Colin Moro was the best first-year player in the league
- Mr 400 Darryl Brinkley defied father time for another season, outplaying a league worth of kids that are mostly two-thirds his age
- Felix Jose challenged for the batting title (flirting with .400 for most of the season) and put up MVP-numbers
- Evan Greusel walked pitched it like he talked it, leading the team in wins and ERA
It seemed like the most attention Mejia got in 2008 was for giving his #14 to retired NHLer Theo Fleury in exchange for two steak dinners. Heck, Fleury even thought (in his way) that he could take Jorge’s position at second base.
Mejia also occasionally got the Vipers’ PA Guy’s recycled “Hit Hit!” (and then the crows shouts “Jorge!”) routine that was started with (and was still used for) Jorge Tang.
As an outsider (like me), you might think Jorge Mejia didn’t do much to stand out in 2008. Of course, that line of thinking would be very, very wrong.
All Mejia did for the Vipers in 2008 was best Joe Batter in every single offensive statistical category except home runs (9 to 9.8), times hit by a pitch (2 to 5.3), and slugging percentage (0.488 to 0.504). That means Mejia’s 106 hits, 22 doubles, 4 triples, 69 RsBI, 25 stolen bases, 55 walks, 0.317 AVG, 0.412 OBP, 900 OPS, 0.797 BB/K, and 0.372 BABiP all exceeded a solid league standard.
Locally, Mejia lead the Vipers in games, runs, triples, sacrifice hits, and walks. He was second on the team in stolen bases, and was third in hits, doubles, and RsBI.
That’s right, kiddies, Mejia had a capital-A Amazing 2008 for the local baseball warriors. I think it’s easy to make the case that Jorge Mejia was the unsung hero for the 2008 Vipers. Even though he stuck with jersey #9 after the Ultra-Fun Fleury Publicity Stunt (UFFPS™), when you see the #14 hanging off the left-field wall of the Hallowed Grounds of Foothills Stadium, think of Jorge’s impressive 2008.
Awesome pictures in this post courtesy of www.catherineboutin.com