Chicago Cubs: Five players who would benefit from a mulligan

Craig Kimbrel / Chicago Cubs (Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images)
Craig Kimbrel / Chicago Cubs (Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Cubs, Adam Greenberg (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images) /

Chicago Cubs: Adam Greenberg

Those who are fans of the movie Field of Dreams will remember the story of Archibald “Moonlight” Graham, a player who got into one-half inning of action with the New York Giants in 1922. He played in the outfield, never got a ball hit to him, and never got to bat. It was a story about coming so close to your dreams but never being able to live them.

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Adam Greenberg, in a way, is like the Graham character. The Cubs drafted the outfielder in the 9th round of the 2002 amateur draft, and he slowly worked his way up the Cubs’ minor league ranks. The 24-year-old earned a callup in 2005 and made his first MLB plate appearance on July 9 in Miami against the Florida Marlins.

It would be his only Cubs plate appearance.

On the first pitch, Valerio de Los Santos drilled Greenberg in the head. Greenberg had to come out of the game immediately – Carlos Zambrano pinch-ran for him. Greenberg suffered a concussion and struggled once he started playing in the minors again. The Cubs released him for good in 2006, and he bounced around with several teams until 2012.

That was when a group of fans started an online petition to get Greenberg another major league at-bat, and at the end of the 2012 season, he got into a game with the Miami Marlins. Though he struck out, it was hailed as a positive ending to an otherwise sad story.

Had Greenberg not been hit by that pitch, who knows what would have happened with his career. He didn’t project to be a major league star, but perhaps he could have hung around for a little bit and made a name for himself. We’ll never know.