Thursday, December 29, 2011

Player Profile: Al Alburquerque

I have one card of Al Alburquerque, from 2011 Bowman.

Playing career: Al Alburquerque made his big league debut for the Tigers in 2011, going 6-1 with a 1.87 ERA in 41 appearances.

Where he is now: Will miss the first half of the 2012 season due to elbow surgery.

Interesting stories: Alburquerque pitched twice for the Tigers in the ALDS against the Yankees. The day after his second appearance, a caller to NY radio station WFAN asked know-it-all host Mike Francesa about Alburquerque, and was dismissed by Francesa who thought the name was made up. Later, after being informed that there really was an Al Alburquerque, Francesca insisted he knew who the pitcher was but always knew him as Alberto Jose Alburquerque and not Al. You can read more about it and hear the clips here.

My memories: When I first heard of him I thought that was a made-up name, too. I hope he has a great career – that is one of the all-time best baseball names. Incidentally, his last name is the traditional spelling – it is the New Mexico city that technically spells it wrong, dropping the first r.

Google Autocomplete results: He is fifth when you type Al A, between Al Anon NYC and Al Anon Meetings NJ, both of which refer to the alcoholism organization. There do not appear to be any other prominent Al Alburquerques.

Coming up next: The next profile will be Alexi Amarista.

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