Friday, April 5, 2013

Two former MLB superstars sign with independent league team

The Long Island Ducks are reloading to defend their Atlantic League title.

The independent league franchise announced the signing of former MLB southpaw Dontrelle Willis on Friday. This coming a day after announcing the signing of potential Hall of Fame outfielder Vladimir Guerrero.

Willis, 31, has bounced around the pro ranks since he reached stardom with the Marlins in the mid-2000s. Willis helped guide the Fish to a world title in 2003 en route to winning the National League Rookie of the Year Award. He recorded a 22-win season in 2005 and finished second in the Cy Young Award voting. The California native has been plagued by injuries and inconsistency since then, which is likely why he has wound up with Long Island.

Guerrero, 38, is a nine-time All-Star and the 2004 American League MVP. The Dominican native has not played in the major leagues since 2011 with the Orioles, but he owns a .318 average with 449 home runs and 1,496 RBIs in 16 career big league seasons.

The Ducks, who open their season on April 18, should have no problem drawing fans to the stadium this summer as long these two guys are on the field. Both were big-time stars at one point in their careers.


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