The Newark Bears acquired a pair of veteran players today (team press release here)
Of potential interest to fans, both players actually have baseball cards.
Jamar Walton appeared in the 2004 Bowman Draft set (#56), 2004 Donruss Elite Extra Edition (#352), 2004 SP Prospects (#397) and 2005 Just Stars (#58). Each set has a slew of parallels, so Mr. Walton has quite a few pieces of cardboard bearing his likeness. The coolest one has to be an insert, limited to 50 copies, from the 2004 SP Prospects set. Walton shares the card with former Marlins Taylor Tankersley and Dontrelle Willis, and all three signed it (or, knowing Upper Deck, stickers that are affixed to the actual card.)
J.J. Sherrill only has one baseball card, not counting minor league team sets: 2000 Royal Rookies #38. (There is also a signed version, so if you track it down and then get his autograph at the ballpark this year you can find out how much his signature has changed over the past 13 years.)
Can-Am League roster rules let teams sign four veterans, so with these new additions the Bears are at their limit. Closer Jorge Vasquez is the only member of the team with any major league experience – two games with the 2004 Kansas City Royals and seven games with the 2005 Atlanta Braves. (The team’s fourth veteran is catcher Orlando Mercado.)
I’m hoping that Sherrill might turn out to be a Quentin Davis-type player for this year’s team. Just looking at the stats, I’m not sure what Walton brings to the table.
But it’s only February 4th, and smart fans are not paying any attention to Can-Am League rosters yet. A lot can and will happen between now and the start of training camp and the beginning of the season.