Carlos Delgado Joins Blue Jays Level of Excellence
Charlie Caskey goes way back to Delgado’s rookie season to remember the first flashes of just how prodigious his power would be, and to a time when the Blue Jays game presentation didn’t suck
"The one that sticks with me the most is his rookie year when he hit homers in consecutive games off the windows of Windows (appropriately enough) restaurant. My two most abiding memories of those moon shots are Joe Carter, who was on base for one of them, looking back with incredulity after crossing home plate, as if he couldn’t believe where the ball had hit and the CBC’s broadcast team of Jim Hughson (a very underrated baseball announcer) and whomever was his colour guy (Rance Mulliniks??) doing a bit the next day where a window supply team asked outside the Rogers Center (with giant sheet of glass in hand) if this ‘was the place where Carlos Delgado worked’"
*Note if anyone can find video/GIFs of Delgado’s Window’s homers or the bit with the broadcast team/window supply team please pleae please tweet them at me so I can die happy.
Jeff Morten struggles to find one specific moment of Carlos that properly encapsulates his memory of the slugging first basemen and in the process summarizes the entire theme of this post.
"I keep trying to figure out that one defining moment. The one nuance or highlight that Carlos Delgado provided. I read old box scores. I try and come up with something other than his 4 homer game. To me the one defining thing about Carlos was respect. Respect for fans, for peers, for elders, for people in general. He was a humble hero. Each at bat you crept forward on your chair as he waggled his bat behind his head. His body positioned to cover the plate. To let ‘er rip. More often than not Delgado answered the call for his talent and expertise. He knew who he was. He was the same guy when he left for Florida as he was when he first popped up behind the plate or in left field his rookie season and started hitting bombs. His smile is etched in everyone’s memory and that is the man you remember. Carlos was just a fine ballplayer and even better person."
As for the man himself, while he did not answer our request (via Twitter) for a favorite memory of his own, he gave Shi Davidi of Sportsnet.ca a brief insight into what it would be:
Carlos Delgado was a very good baseball player, and spent a couple of seasons among the best in the game. While he was one of the best players ever to don a Blue Jays jersey he is by no means even close to being a Hall of Famer, but as these memories attest but his contributions to the Blue Jays were much more than just his on the field presence, he transcended the game in Toronto, and is now in his deserved place in the Level of Excellence