Let me tell you how good A.J. Reed is. Last year, while I was serving as General Manager of the Montgomery Biscuits in the prestigious Ultimate Fantasy Baseball League, I made the smartest decision of my life: I added new Astros first baseman A.J. Reed to my farm while he mercilessly punished the unfortunates in the Cal League.
He instantly became the most popular man in baseball.
"Hello, Mr. GM," I would say, "I am interested in trading for Mike Trout."
"Only if you deal me A.J. Reed," came the reply. I moved on.
"Hello, other Mr. GM," I tried to somebody else. "I would like to trade for Bryce Harper."
"Is A.J. Reed available? Came the reply. I moved on."
And then came the less feasible scenarios. I would be approached at Winter Meetings with a request: "Hello, Mr. Biscuits. I would like to trade you Will Venable for A.J. Reed. I’ll even throw in the desiccated corpse of Brandon Wood to make it an even swap." I ended that conversation by executing the Wushi Finger Hold. Skadoosh.
See, A.J. Reed is special. Sure, he led the minor leagues in Home Runs in 2015*, but anybody can do that. What he really has is a magic that can only be summarized by the word "pettifogger".
*I think. I mean, I could look it up, but I’m busy writing this article. Besides, if I looked it up only to find out that I’m wrong, it would ruin a wonderful narrative.
This, my friends, is what we have been waiting for. Let’s be honest. Since April, the Astros haven’t been very good at first base. Tyler White gave it the ol’ college try, but he’s now re-taking the course after too many skipped lectures. A.J. Reed is the professor. Or he will be. You’ll see. There literally is no possible way that he won’t hit 30 home runs every fortnight for the next twenty years or so.
Steamer says he’s going to hit .243/.314/.407 this season. KATOH thinks he’s going to be Pat Burrell or Luis Gonzalez.** But we know better. We know that Babe Ruth’s reanimated cadaver has come back to sit in the stands and marvel over what Reed is going to do for the Astros.
**KATOH also thinks he might be Chris Carter, but that’s just stupid.
Now, by this point some of you are wondering if this article is a farce. Need I remind you that when the Greeks conquered Canada, people thought that was just a joke too? Boy, were they wrong.
Now, don’t be surprised if at first Reed provides but a marginal (Marwinginal?) upgrade over the Astros’ recent play at the position. He will only be lulling the opposition into a false sense of security before he makes them join the choir invisible. Baseball-ly speaking, of course. He’s not so crass as to stoop to actual snuffing.
The Astros’ top-ish prospect has appeared, and regardless of how ridiculous this entire article is, it is fun for fans to dream, for a time, that the next great Houston player has arrived for keeps. So why not post over at Lone Star Ball about how the Rangers’ reign of terror over the AL West is ending, starting tomorrow? Why not start printing counterfeit playoff tickets? Why not re-dye your old A.J. Hinch/Pollock/Burnett/Pierzynski/Ellis/Griffin/Cole jerseys and wear them with pride to WalMart to go buy all the Kleenex that you will need to contain the tears that you weep for joy when the Astros new first baseman is enshrined as a first-ballot hall-of-famer in 2051?
Because at this point, nobody can prove you wrong.