Walkoff Woodward

Concerning Detroit Baseball
November 20, 2012

A Eulogy for Ryan Raburn

Ryan Raburn left the Tigers on Tuesday after celebrating his twentieth strikeout in a row and thirty fourth consecutive game without an extra base hit. “I just don’t feel the old vim,” complained the baseball player recently. He was once renowned in local sabermetric circles for his strong blend of on base percentage and power that, somehow, only manifested itself in the late summer. “It had something to do with the air,” he mentioned once. “Or perhaps it’s this oolong tea that I drink only after the All-Star break.” Raburn was always bursting with late summer potential that never manifested itself. He played the outfield and infield for the Tigers and somehow only former teammates Miguel Cabrera, Brandon Inge, and Magglio Ordonez played in more games than he since the start of the 2007 season.

At the player’s moving party were fourteen of his fifteen extra base hits (the other one had left the park), the twelve players he drove in all year and two hundred and five of the two hundred and twenty two plate appearances he gave birth to this year.

“It was a sad year,” he said to his impressionable cast. “I ended up on the disabled list and didn’t even have the opportunity to perform my September heroics.”

At present, interest revolves around the estate. Executors have warned that Raburn, although earning an average income of one million, fifty eight thousand five hundred dollars a year in Detroit, has to meet an annual overhead of two million, three hundred thousand, of which two million, two hundred and fifty thousand went in support to his lack of defensive ability, his penchant for swinging first and taking pitches later, and alimony to Austin Jackson, for making him run an estimated 46 more miles than normally necessary. It is estimated that his liabilities outweigh his assets by eight million, six hundred thousand.

When asked, on occasion why he played so poorly so often, the former fifth round draft pick replied, “I don’t worry about that. I worry about my walkup music.”

At the party, fans from the team were invited but very few attended.

His old supporter, Doc Worn, said, “He was always so butch. I thought he’d finally put it together once and for all when they gave him the second base job.”

Alas, that was not in the cards. Raburn took the job once Brandon Inge was released and for two months labored at the plate and in the field. He was demoted at the beginning of June after posting an OPS of .420.

Not much happened after that. He came back midway thru June and all of July. He didn’t improve.

Now, Ryan Raburn, author of the worst season in 2012, belongs in Detroit no more.

Here he has ceased to be, bereft of life, he rests in peace, he has kicked the bucket, hopped the twig, bit the dust, snuffed it, breathed his last, and will never be seen again in this marvelously decrepit city. I guess that we’re all thinking just how sad it is that a man of such talent, such skillful walk-up music, of such blissful defensive prowess should now be so suddenly spirited away after such a disappointing stint, before he’d achieved many of the things of which he was capable, and before we’d had our fill of fun at his expense.

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