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Happy Birthday Tim Raines

Happy 49th birthday Tim. Yeah I know he has no connection with the Jays but he was a favorite of mine as a kid. I think he should be a Hall of Famer....and likely if they had had their best seasons with someone other than the Expos both he and Andre Dawson would be in the Hall.

Tim was the second best leadoff man of his generation, and since the best of his generation was also baseball's all time greatest leadoff man, it isn't an insult to say he was second best. Most seasons he got on base at a .400 clip and he stole bases, not only in large numbers but always had a very good stealing percentage. He is 5th on the career list for stolen bases with 808.

In 1981, the season the Expos made the playoffs, Tim finished second to Fernando Valenzuela for the NL Rookie of the Year Award. He received votes for league MVP that season and 6 other seasons.

He was one of a handful of players who lost out when the owners colluded (is that that proper legal term Hugo?) to not sign other team's free agents before the 1987 season, which was good for my Expos but bad for Tim's bank account. The owners were found guilty of collusion and the players affected received some money as compensation.

In December 1990 Tim was traded to the White Sox in one of those awful trades the Expos seemed to pull every year, blaming their best players for them not making the playoffs and trading them for 10 cents on the dollar. The Expos got Ivan Calderon and Barry Jones in return. Great deal eh?

Tim spent 5 years in Chicago then went to the damn Yankees for 3 and finished out his career with time in Oakland, Montreal again, Baltimore and Florida.

On the All-Time Career leader boards Tim is 50th in games, 49th in runs scored, 71st in hits, 33rd in walks, 41st in times on base, 44th in intentional walks (why would you intentionally walk a base stealer?) and 27th in power/speed number.