Zaun leaves mark on majors over time

Second String

June 17, 2010|Grant Gordon
  • Gregg Zaun has enjoyed a long career.
Gregg Zaun has enjoyed a long career. (Mark Dustin Daily…)

"All the world's indeed a stage/ And we are merely players/ Performers and portrayers/" — Lyrics to Rush's 'Limelight' Gregg Zaun's at-bat music Unfortunately, I had just one occasion to meet Gregg Zaun.

But the first impression made by the Glendale native was certainly a lasting one.

Throughout a 16-year career, he's had to make first impressions with nine teams.

One would likely color Zaun a journeyman, and they'd likely be correct. But journeyman seems to come with a negative connotation and therefore does not suit the career of the St. Francis High graduate.

And after being able to sustain a career in Major League Baseball for 16 seasons, it doesn't matter how many teams you played for, you had one heckuva career.

Regrettably, a May 20th game at Pittsburgh might very well have been the affable Zaun's last game in the big leagues. He left the contest with a strained right shoulder that led to a trip to the disabled list and eventually season-ending and career-threatening surgery on Tuesday to repair a torn labrum in his right shoulder.


"I don't need to play. I don't need to play Major League Baseball to validate myself as a person," Zaun, who had surgery in Cincinnati, where he resides along with having a home in Florida, told the Associated Press last week. "Do I want to play? That's a different story. It's too uncertain to tell. I'm really upset about having surgery and my season being over."

He added that he will weigh his future in the game based on how his arm feels and if he's healthy enough in his body and heart to trot out on the diamond for another season.

After 16 seasons, it's likely that finances are not an issue and he's already dabbled in a possible career after baseball in the broadcasting booth.

But if the franchise-trotting catcher truly hangs it up, it's likely it will come with little more fanfare than a story such as this in his hometown paper and a few other mentions here and there.

Frankly, it will be fitting, because that's how Zaun played the game.

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