Friday, March 6, 2015
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Ranking the best Bay Area athletes

By
From page A2 | April 20, 2014 |

This is the greatest era in Bay Area pro sports history. With the exception of the Oakland Raiders, every major sports team is a serious playoff contender – something that’s unprecedented.

So if you’re a sports fan, this is a column for you. But if you’re not, this is really a column for you, because you can read it and know enough to sound informed.

It’s a cheat sheet for Bay Area sports figures – my annual ranking of the Bay Area’s top 10 sports figures.

I’ve done it the past few years and things keep changing, even if the top of the list looks a lot like 2013. There are always more interesting athletes than positions on my list.

So let’s count down the top 10 athletes, in reverse order, with last year’s ranking in parenthesis:

10. (8) Patrick Marleau, San Jose Sharks. He’s the biggest star and longest-tenured member of a perennial playoff team. But his postseason failures give fans a love-hate relationship with him. Maybe that will change this year?

9. (nr) Matt Schaub, Oakland Raiders. The new quarterback hasn’t played a game for Oakland (he came from Houston in a March trade), but is already their most recognizable player. That says a lot about the state of the region’s worst franchise.

8. (nr) Mark Jackson, Golden State Warriors. The Warriors’ coach has turned the franchise around and changed its culture – and he still could lose his job, which would thrill some fans, infuriate others.

7. (nr) Coco Crisp, Oakland Athletics. The A’s keep a low profile and Crisp is their most-recognizable and productive offensive player. That his name sounds like a breakfast cereal makes it even better.

6. (4) Tim Lincecum, San Francisco Giants. A few years ago, he was the undisputed No. 1 on this list, but he’s slowly moving down. Still, his hold on the fans was evidenced by the team’s willingness to give him a two-year contract last year despite two subpar years. His hipster image plays perfectly in San Francisco. And his mustache? Don’t ask.

5. (7) Billy Beane, Oakland Athletics. The general manager who was the focus of “Moneyball” is bigger than any player on his team, which is amazing, since they won back-to-back division titles. However, that also means that fans always expect their favorite players to depart in a Beane trade.

4. (3) Jim Harbaugh, San Francisco 49ers. The coach is the face of the Bay Area’s most popular franchise, given credit for bringing them back from obscurity and turning them into a championship contender. A great combination of creativity and overwhelming intensity.

3. (6) Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors. The most electrifying athlete in the region, playing in front of the Bay Area’s most passionate fan base. Curry is the best shooter in the NBA , a unique talent with an extreme likeability. Probably the second-greatest Warriors player in West Coast history.

 2. (2) Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49ers. Latest in a line of great 49ers quarterbacks, he has become a lightning rod for controversy. Is he worth $20 million a year? Is he overrated? Is he a future Hall-of-Famer, as one noted ESPN tonsil said last year? Is he overly tattooed? He’s athletic, he’s a winner and he’s never boring – witness the current legal quasi-story involving him in Florida.

1. (1) Buster Posey, San Francisco Giants. He’s the poster boy for the San Francisco Giants, the region’s lone champion (twice!) in recent years. Not only is he their best player, he is an old-school catcher who would have been popular in any decade of baseball’s history. And he has a great name.

Reach Brad Stanhope at 427-6958 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/bradstanhope.

Brad Stanhope

Brad Stanhope

Brad Stanhope is a former Daily Republic editor. He began his career at the DR in the last millennium. He spent 24 years as a sports editor, associate editor and news editor before leaving the Daily Republic in 2014. Brad lives in Suisun City with his wife, Mrs. Brad, and two sons. He enjoys cheese.
LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

1 hurt as rash of Fairfield shootings continue

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A1

 
Random thoughts on getting older by Annabelle . . . and Susan

By Susan Winlow | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Work progresses on freeway interchange project

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Solano College grad becomes Marvel superhero

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B1

Caltrans announces planned I-80 closures

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A1

 
French guitarist brings world music to The Palms

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B1

Bay Area Stage readies ‘Mockingbird’ production

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B1

 
Let’s take a 2nd look at 1st cars

By Tony Wade | From Page: A2

 
Bike to School Day poster contest begins

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3

 
Youth talent, scholarship awards dinner set

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A4

Free 8-week Journey Through Grief class set

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A4

 
Audubon Society to hold talk on blackbird decline

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A4

 
Fairfield police log: March 4, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

Suisun City police log: March 4, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

 
.

US / World

SF hospital performs rare chain kidney swap

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
El niño might not be enough to help Ca drought

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

Covered California down overall but up among youth, minorities

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
App developers take a swing at playgrounds

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Off-duty officer accidentally shoots relative

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Student protests block access to campus

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

GOP legislator enters race for Boxer’s seat

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Japanese tsunami debris washing ashore

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Device in ‘Superbug’ outbreak not approved by FDA

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
States on edge about the future of health insurance markets

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Freight train carrying crude oil derails in Illinois

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Supreme Court allows for compassionate release

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Air Force veteran who saved orphans in Korean War dies at 97

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6 | Gallery

 
Homeowners group denies playhouse for cancer-stricken girl

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

Report: Suicides by girls and young women continue to climb

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Jurors in Jodi Arias case: We were 11-1 for death penalty

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

Experts: Ferguson must move quickly to rebuild public trust

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Plane skids off LaGuardia runway, slams into fence near bay

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7 | Gallery

Father tells jury about boy’s death at Boston Marathon

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Hillary Clinton email trove under review for release

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

Attack on US envoy part of S.Korea’s violent protest history

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10 | Gallery

 
Last Ebola patient is released in Liberia

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Floods kill 42 people in Tanzania, authorities say

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Death toll in east Ukraine mine blast reaches 33

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Syria says it killed military leader of al-Qaida group

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Iraq says Islamic State militants ‘bulldozed’ ancient site

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Companies form coalition to conserve during drought

By The Associated Press | From Page: A12

 
.

Living

Today in History: March 6, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: March 6, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Horoscopes: March 6, 2015

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A9

 
Should I tell my coworker that her romantic emails are being read at work?

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: A9

.

Entertainment

Week in preview March 6-12, 2015

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B1

 
Shania Twain to launch final tour in June

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Elizabeth McCracken wins $20,000 short story prize

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Dying wish comes true: Dutch woman with ALS sees Rembrandts

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Announcer Craig Sager returns from leukemia to NBA sideline

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Comedy Central’s ‘Too Many Stars’ means plenty of laughs

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Jaime Camil shines as telenovela star on ‘Jane the Virgin’

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Review: ‘Unfinished Business’ should never have started

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Review: ‘Second Best’ Marigold Hotel lives up to its title

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3 | Gallery

 
Entertainment calendar: March 6, 2015

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B4

 
TVGrid

By Daily Republic | From Page: B6

.

Sports

Hunter Pence breaks arm in Giants’ 8-6 win over Cubs

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

 
 
Jones-Drew retires, Woodley released by Raiders

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

Veteran defensive tackle Dockett joins 49ers on 2-year deal

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

 
Maddon makes debut with Cubs in spring tie with A’s

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

 
Local Report: Labit pitches SCC to win over Folsom Lake

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B8

Prosecutors: No criminal charge for NASCAR driver Kurt Busch

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
As NFLPA election looms, Smith hopes to keep ‘boring job’

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

Ashley, McConnell lead No. 5 Arizona to 99-60 rout of Cal

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Holmes opens 4-shot PGA lead at Blue Monster

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

This date in sports history for March 6, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

 
.

Business

Toyota rolls out first mass-market cars to run on hydrogen fuel cells

By The Washington Post | From Page: C1 | Gallery

 
Google providing car insurance quotes in latest expansion

By The Associated Press | From Page: B11

Can Etsy keep its folksy brand and make shareholders money?

By The Associated Press | From Page: B11

 
Applications for US jobless aid inch up to a 10-month high

By The Associated Press | From Page: B11

A robust US job market is expected to keep delivering

By The Associated Press | From Page: B11

 
Largest US banks all pass latest round of Fed ‘stress tests’

By The Associated Press | From Page: B11

Ringling Bros. Circus to give up elephant acts in 3 years

By The Associated Press | From Page: B11 | Gallery

 
.

Obituaries

Michele Jarvis

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Robert Charles Thierry

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

Thelma A. Roche

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
.

Comics

Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9