For any of you who don’t know Riley Poole, he is one of the main characters in the National Treasure movies. Acting alongside Nicholas Cage and Diane Kruger (Ben Gates and Abigale Chase), Justin Bartha (Riley Poole) makes the wise cracks that make the movie great. Amidst the action and adventure, Bartha’s wise cracks keep the movie going. To me, he is the funniest character in the movie and a very important one in that.
Now, there is a reason I am talking about Mr. Riley Poole on this MLBlog. It is because there is a strong comparison between Riley and many of the MLB players out there who don’t get a ton of credit for what they do on a daily basis. The guys who put up good, consistent numbers to keep the team in it to win it. Those are what I am calling the Riley Pooles of Baseball. I mean, how would Ben Gates have stolen the Declaration of Independance without Riley at his side talking him through it? How would they have survived the constant threats from Ian Howe and his men? How would they have gotten to the treasure? Riley was a very important character in this movie and there are many of them around the MLB.
Riley Poole of Baseball #1: Jacoby Ellsbury- Now, I’m not saying that nobody knows about this kid or doesn’t appreciate him. Because I know first hand how much he is loved around here in Boston. He is one of the favorites among every single fan. But his job with the Boston Red Sox is extremely important and it hasn’t been recognized that much (at least I haven’t heard any talk about him). Ellsbury is currently second to Carl Crawford with 30 steals on the season. He is on a phenominal pace and will easily end the season with over 40 stolen bases. He gets on base to produce runs and to score them himself. He has already stolen home this season in one of the biggest moments for the Red Sox all season- in a game against the Yankees. Ellsbury is also a great defender. He plays a STELLAR center field. He makes diving catches all the time. Despite not having a great arm, he has a respectable one and makes up for it with his amazing diving catches. With all the talent surrounding him, this kid is doing as well as anyone. All in all, this kid has a great amount of talent and is not getting recognized for it.
- Riley Poole of Baseball #2: Brad Hawpe- Now this guy is definitely not getting enough respect for what he has done this season in Colorado. He is one of the biggest reasons for the Rockies’ recent success. He is currently batting .333, has a .604 slugging percentage, has 11 homers, 53 RBI, and 136 total bases. He is tearing it up. Now I’m not saying he is having an MVP worthy season, because he has a lot to compete with (Pujols, Wright, Fielder). He has earned an All Star vote from me though. He is doing everything right in Colorado and I don’t think he is getting even close to the amound of appreciation he deserves. Even I am appreciating him and I’m not even a Rockies fan.
3. Riley Poole of Baseball #3: Pablo Sandoval- The reason I chose this guy as #3 is because he is having a STELLAR season in a place where so many people go unrecognized. Sandoval is one of them. Now, you’ve got Tim Lincecum and Bengie Molina, but what about those other guys that contribute so much to the team and don’t get the respect and appreciation they deserve. Sandoval, Randy Winn, Aaron Rowand, and Edgar Renteria (sort of) are all playing well but don’t get back what they give. Well, Sandoval is playing the best out of these guys so I chose him, He is batting .336, has a .544 slugging percentage, has hit eight homers (respectable), has driven in 34 runs, and has 131 total bases. He is having a good season and no one is giving him credit. Well I am. Now, I don’t really care at all about what is going on in Frisco but this guy deserves the credit and I am giving it to him. Congrats man.
So I hope all of you get what I am trying to say here. Professional baseball would be going no where without the Riley Pooles of Baseball.