Being a baseball player can be tough. Injuries, long bus and plane rides, grimy hotels, and hoards of groupies can dissipate some of the more positive aspects of professional life as a ballplayer. However, the bar does not get much lower than being traded for yourself, an anomaly that has not happened since 2000.
That year, the Philadelphia Phillies were mired in a disappointing 44-55 season. On July 26th, General Manager Ed Wade dealt Curt Schilling to the Arizona Diamondbacks. This is a trade that few Phillies fans will ever forget, as Schilling became a world champion and Cy Young a year later. Meanwhile, the crop of characters that Wade pried from Arizona were less than overwhelming during their time with the Phillies.
However, that was not the only move Wade made that evening. Shortly after completing the Schilling deal, the former Astros GM shipped OF Rob Ducey to the Toronto Blue Jays in exchange for a player to be named later. On July 31st, the Blue Jays sent RHP John Sneed to Philadelphia as compensation. Sneed, 24 at the time, played the rest of the season for Reading (1-3, 8.77) before signing with the Minnesota Twins organization the following season. Ducey would go on to play five games with the Blue Jays. The then 35-year old hit .154-0-1 in 13 at-bats for Jim Fregosi’s Jays.
About a week later, the Phillies shipped 2B Mickey Morandini to Toronto. On August 5th, the two teams agreed to swap Morandini for yet another player-to-be-named later. On August 7th, the Blue Jays announced that they had shipped Ducey back to Philadelphia as the player-to-be-named in the Morandini deal. Ducey played 70 games with Philadelphia prior to being traded to Toronto. After his five game stint north-of-the-border, the Toronto native played 42 more games with the Phillies.
Rob Ducey played in 703 games during his 13-year major league career. However, his greatest feat, and that in which he may be best remembered, was being traded for himself during the utterly disappointing 2000 season.
Rob Ducey Fast Facts
– Played for six MLB teams (Blue Jays, ’87-’92; Angels, ’92; Rangers, ’93-’94; Mariners, ’97-’98; Phillies, ’99-’01; Blue Jays, ’00; Expos, ’01)
– Was a Designated Hitter for Team Canada during the 2004 Summer Olympic Games in Athens, Greece. Canada finished in fourth place.
– He was the first Canadian to play for both of Canada’s MLB teams, the Montreal Expos and Toronto Blue Jays, as well as the Canadian Olympic team. The only others to achieve this goal since are Matt Stairs, Denic Boucher, and Shawn Hill.