Like a fine wine

The phrase “ageless wonder” gets tossed around a bit too freely if you ask me. If someone is over 30, a lazy broadcaster might use the phrase as a catch all. I think of Jamie Moyer as an extraordinary craftsman who was able to best younger opponents with guile and an incredible feel for pitching. Moyer pitched 25 seasons in the big leagues and he was able to last that long without elite arm talent. Many fireballers like former Twins top prospect Adam Johnson were out of professional baseball before turning 25. As a 40 year old, Moyer won 21 games and his 215 innings were a team-high for the Seattle Mariners in 2003. He proved that yes, there was life after turning 40. Rickey Henderson also produced a stellar stat line while flirting with 40. Always entertaining, dazzling, and aloof, Henderson stole 66 bases for the Oakland A’s in 1998, an AL leading mark, at the age of 39. 14 years earlier, while also playing for Oakland, he equated that level when he stole 66 bases. It is incredible to think that he could maintain that same level of performance but Ricky was a guy who defied conventional wisdom on so many levels. That same 1998 season, another 39 year old outfielder, Otis Nixon of the Twins swiped 37 bases. If memory serves, Nixon and current Twins speedster Ben Revere are the only two Twins to steal more than 30 bases since 1998.