Since that tribute was published, Tim came back and contributed greatly to the 89-Win 2006 squad. He finished his career in the final game of that season in the on-deck circle in the bottom of the 10th inning with 299 career HRs under his belt. In a way, he will always be there.
With all of the success that the Angels have had this decade it is most important to underscore that in addition to being at or near the top of every statistical category - rate stats AND counting stats, that when Tim Salmon was in his first postseason, he showed up and made it count.
Had Vlad carried us all the way this year, maybe the argument is tougher to make. If Garret Anderson had higher rate stats in addition to all of his counting stats, perhaps the argument swings away from the Kingfish. If Nolan Ryan or Jim Fregosi had played an integral role in getting the team a ring, they would certainly challenge Timmy for his spot on this list.
But they did not. And Tim did. If Luck is when prearedness meets opportunity, then Timmy was just lucky. But when he hit that homerun in Game 2... dude, it was DESTINY.
My personal greatest moment as an Angels fan was seeing him race around the warning track with the American League Championship trophy in his hand showing it to every one of us. And to think that they were just getting started.
Up through 2002 at midnight every New Year's eve I wondered "Is this the year they finally do it?!?!" But because, among many Angels, Tim Salmon showed up when the postseason opportunity presented itself, we can all have our new years wishes, hopes and dreams to ourselves.
Happy New Year Everyone, may the Halo shine in your hearts all year.