To pretend otherwise in the moment would be disingenuous: Michael Young will go down as very, very far from being my favorite Texas Ranger.

There was a brief moment in time when that wasn't true, though. In 2000, the Rangers were a team coming off consecutive division titles, and dealt one of their many almost-worthless stating pitchers -- in this case Esteban Loaiza -- for an almost-worthless Toronto middle infield prospect. At the time, Young had most recently managed an .818 OPS as a 22 year old in high A. He managed to keep that same level of success with a promotion each year, which means he was surviving, but never becoming a significant prospect. You will notice, for example, his name never showed up on a Baseball American top 100 list.

2001, then, marked the year one of the greatest to ever play for the franchise came on the scene, and we all knew it. It just wasn't who we expected. In late May of Alex Rodriguez's first year in Texas, Michael Young was called up to fill in at second base, and became a fixture of the team for the next decade.