Yesterday, we detailed the tenure of the Angels' ninth-best acquisition ever, shortstop David Eckstein.
This, however, is when vote totals are beginning to get serious. As we take a look at our eighth-greatest Angels acquisition ever, and delve into a deeper portion of our countdown.
A surefire Hall of Famer before he even landed in Anaheim, this player made his legacy as a Twin, garnering MVP and Rookie of the Year honors with the team and making the AL All-Star team in every season he was there. As age began to take its toll, however, and it became apparent that his skill set would not make him any cheaper, the Twins cashed in on an opportunity to flip their franchise face to the Angels, acquiring Ken Landreaux, Brad Havens, Dave Engle and Paul Hartzell in exchange for...Rod Carew.
ROD CAREW, FIRST BASEMAN
.314/.393/.392, 968 H, 119 OPS+, 282 RBI, 405 BB, 16.2 WAR (2.3 average, 7 seasons)
Although he made his name as a second baseman with the Twins, he'd transitioned to first base when it became clear that it would extend his career. Known for his extremely unorthodox batting stance, Carew was the rare example of a first baseman with leadoff capabilities. His ability to set the table, then run the table, was uncanny, and it was an ability he maintained until the day he retired, still clipping a .371 on-base percentage in his final season of 1985.
Carew did gain his 3,000th career hit as an Angel--against his former team, the Twins, ironically--and made six All-Star appearances in the Halo uniform, missing out only in his final year. His popularity only made him even more of a standout Angel, contributing to the team's 1979 and 1982 division titles, and almost propelling them to another in his final season. His speed that had obliterated the opposition as a Twin, however, was largely diminished by the time he got to Anaheim, although he did steal 23 bases and rap out 7 triples in 1980 (but he never topped those totals in any other year in Anaheim).
In voting, Carew received four fifth-place votes, five sixth-place votes, one seventh-place vote, two eighth-place votes, two ninth-place votes, and one tenth-place vote, for a total of 64 points.
And Adam Sandler got it wrong, by the way--Rod Carew is not a Jew.