Saturday, October 17, 2015

Played for both Part 1

One thing that was made a big deal of was the players who suited up for the Blue Jays and for the Expos. Overall there were 56 players who completed this feat. A couple did it in the same year.

Today, I'm going to cover the mound warriors who wore the bleu, blanc, et rouge of Les Expos, and the blue and white of the Blue Jays.

 First is Balor Moore. A rather unremarkable pitcher from 1970-1980 for the Expos, the Angels, and the Blue Jays. As of right now, this is the only card i have of Moore. His best year was likely 1972 when he was 9-9 3.47. For the most part, walks were his nemesis.

Every transaction involving Balor was a direct purchase from his previous team. The interesting thing is he made his Major League debut at the age of 19, and was out of baseball before the age of 30. According to his Wikipedia page, he had injury issues starting in 1974. He also apparently threw a perfect game in a Winter League in Puerto Rico.

 Dale Murray had two stints with the Expos, the first from 1974-1976 and the second from 1979-1980 before crossing the Ontario border to pitch for the Jays. In his first stint as an Expo, he was one of the premier relievers. After the 1976 season, he was traded with Woodie Fryman to the Reds for Tony Perez and Will McEnaney. In 1979, he was purchased by the Expos from the Mets, then signed with the Blue Jays in 1981. In 1982 he was traded by the Jays to the Yankees along with Tom Dodd for Dave Collins, Fred McGriff, Mike Morgan, and cash. Interestingly enough, Graig Nettles was included in the trade originally, but wanted a huge bonus from the Jays to go to the city, hence the cash addition by the Yankees.
 Randy St. Claire was a reliever who pitched from 1984-1994 for the Expos, Reds, Twins, Braves and Blue Jays. He played for the Expos from 1984-1988 and for the Jays in 1994. Again, a largely unremarkable career, but has made an impact as a coach, where he is currently the pitching coach for the Buffalo Bisons.

Willie Fraser spent most of his career with the California Angels, but did spend 13 games with the Jays in 1991. He actually came to the Jays as part of a package that brought Devon White to the Jays as well.

Traded by the California Angels with Marcus Moore and Devon White to the Toronto Blue Jays for a player to be named later, Junior Felix and Luis Sojo. The Toronto Blue Jays sent Ken Rivers (minors) (December 4, 1990) to the California Angels to complete the trade.

     Fraser was selected off waivers by the Cardinals on June 26, 1991. In 1995, he signed with the Expos for his final Major League appearances. 

 John Candelaria was a pitcher from 1975-1993. He was a starter for the most part, but spent his time in Montreal and Toronto as a reliever. An interesting fact is he pitched for both New York teams, both Los Angeles teams, and both Canadian teams over the course of his career.

 Now we come to a Canadian who has played for both. Denis Boucher pitched from 1991-1994 for Toronto, Cleveland, and Montreal. Boucher was a part of the trade that sent Glenallen Hill and Mark Whiten to the Indians for Tom Candiotti and Turner Ward. He was chosen by the Rockies in the Expansion draft in 1993, then was traded to the Padres. The Padres then traded him to the Expos.

When he became an Expo, fans turned out to see the hometown boy pitch. In 1995, he was part of history when he teamed with Joe Siddall for an all-Canadian battery, the first time it happened in Major League Baseball History.

Luis Aquino pitched for the Jays and Expos as well. He was signed as an amateur free agent in 1981. He didn't do much for the Jays, only appearing in 7 games and pitching 11 1/3 innings. He spent 1987 in the minors, split between Syracuse and Omaha, as the Jays sent him to the Royals for Juan Beniquez. From 1989-1992 he spent most of the time in the bullpen for Kansas City, filling in as a spot starter as needed. After going to Florida to wear the teal, (I miss those uniforms) he signed with the Expos in 1995. He only pitched in 29 games, for 37 1/3 innings before being traded to the San Francisco Giants.

 Omar Daal got his time with the Canadian teams out of the way fairly easily. In the offseason of 1995 he was traded to the Expos for a minor leaguer. On July 25, 1997 he was taken off waivers by the Jays from the Expos. After the season, he became a Diamondback, selected in the Expansion Draft.

In 97 games for Montreal, he was 5-7 with a 5.51 ERA. For the Jays, he was 1-1 4 ERA in 9 games, 6 of them starts.

Though not Canadian team related, he was part of the trade that brought the Diamondbacks Curt Schilling from Philadelphia.

Ahhh Bill Risley. How I try to forget your existence.

He was drafted by the Cincinnati Reds but was traded to the Expos along with John Wetteland for Willie Greene, Dave Martinez and Scott Ruskin. His debut in 1992 was his only appearance, a start in the second game of a double-header against the Dodgers. The rest of his career was spent in the bullpen. The Expos waived him and he was taken by the Mariners. In 1995 he was traded by the Mariners to the Jays with Miguel Cairo for Edwin Hurtado and Paul Menhart. For the next three seasons, 1996-1998, he was largely forgettable on largely forgettable Blue Jays teams. I remember more than once turning off the game when he came to the mound, just because I couldn't bear to see the result.

 Graeme Lloyd. I own this card. I've looked at it repeatedly.. It never registered he started his career in the minors as a Blue Jay. He was signed as an amateur free agent in 1988. So how did he end up as a Milwaukee Brewer in this card?? Well, kind reader, I shall let you know. The Philadelphia Phillies selected him in the Rule 5 draft of minor league players. The Phillies turned around and traded him to the Brewers for a minor leaguer. He stayed a Brewer until the 1996 season when he was traded to the Yankees. He returned to the nest in 1999 when he was traded with Homer Bush and David Wells for Roger Clemens. At the end of the 1999 season, he was a free agent, where he signed with the Expos. He missed 2000 with surgery and then spent the next two seasons in Montreal until he was traded to the Marlins.

He now works with the Australian Baseball League.

 Ted Lilly was a Dodger draftee who was involved in what felt like a constant stream of trades between Montreal and Los Angeles. This trade involved Lilly, Peter Bergeron, Wilton Guerrero and a minor leaguer going to the Expos for Hiram Bocachica, Mark Grudzielanek, and Carlos Perez. He made his debut in 1999 for the Expos and pitched like he wanted to leave Montreal. In 2000, he was traded to the Yankees to complete an earlier trade that brought Hideki Irabu to Montreal. This would be after George Steinbrenner called Irabu a Fat Toad. A rather convoluted trade got him to Oakland where he was traded to the Jays in 2003 for Bobby Keilty (who I forgot was a Jay, honestly)

As a Jay he was solid, if unspectacular. In 2006 he left as a free agent to go back to Los Angeles.

Others who have pitched for both teams that I don't have cards of (yet) are Miguel Batista, Darwin Cubillian, Scott Downs, Shawn Hill, Tomo Ohka, Jon Rauch, and Scott Service.

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