The New Guy. Short history, though most of this is pretty well known and has been covered ad nauseum on Baseball Tonight: Born in Georgia, became a superstar at Florida State, one of the greatest players in collegiate baseball history. He was picked second in the 1997 draft by the Phillies, but he had Lucifer for an agent and refused to sign. He took off to the Northern League for a year, because playing for peanuts in St. Paul was preferable to an “inadequate” bonus and went back in the draft the next year, where he was taken by the Cardinals, with whom he did sign. He played only 45 games in the minors before he had one of the greatest callup campaigns ever, .417/.463/.972 in 14 games.
But since, he’s never been able to stay healthy and only occasionally fulfilled his talent. His career high in games played is 135. His best season, 2001, he hit .323/.414/.613, but played only 109 games. Last year was his second or third-best, but he played only 100. He was traded to the Braves in basically a salary dump this offseason, but the Cards still got Adam Wainwright in the deal (as well as Ray King and Jason Marquis, but the Braves didn’t care so much about them), plus he replaced Gary Sheffield after an MVP-type season, so the pressure is on. His current injury is apparently patellar tendinitis, the same injury that ended Mark McGwire’s career and threatens Jose Vidro’s; Drew had surgery to remove dead tissue in his knee this offseason. I feel better with him in the hands of the Braves’ medical staff than the Cards’, simply because a lot of Cardinal players seem to have injury problems. But this isn’t a little injury at all and we do have to be concerned.
Drew is a free agent after the season. With Boras as his agent, you can bet he won’t re-up without a fight, but if the Braves want to keep him it would probably be better to do now than later… As a sop, the Braves also brought in his brother Tim, a pitcher, but he isn’t to be taken seriously as a bullpen candidate… Real name “David Jonathan Drew”. So on top of all the rest of his ailments, he’s dyslexic?