It’s hard for us to bemoan the 1969 trade of Mickey Rivers to California for 46-year-old Hoyt Wilhelm. Our namesake may have never gotten the chance to play in Atlanta had the Braves not made that short-sighted move.
Rowland, drafted one year after Rivers, would’ve had a tough time beating out Mick the Quick, who batted .295 over a 15-year career.
Good thing he could hit, because Rivers was less patient than Jeff Francoeur. He averaged only 29 walks a season, which accounts for his pedestrian .329 lifetime OBP.
Mickey’s pinnacle came with the Yankees, who acquired him from the Angels along with pitcher Ed Figueroa for Bobby Bonds prior to the ’76 season. Rivers began developing power in New York, posting slugging percentages of .432 and .439 in his first two years in pinstripes while hitting .312 and .326.
When his career ended with the Rangers in 1984 Rivers had amassed 1,660 hits and 267 SB — roughly 1,000 hits and 200 steals more than Rowland.
But as far as I can tell no one’s named a blog after Mickey.