To properly frame Matt Wieters' now-concluded Orioles career, consider these three comparisons from early in the catcher's professional career:
- November 2008, FanGraphs: "Matt Wieters: Joe Mauer With Power?"
- May 2009, ESPN: "He is the switch-hitting Jesus."
- March 2010, Sports Illustrated: "His teammates at Georgia Tech called him, simply, God."
Boy, that really escalated, huh? We have comparisons to an American League batting champion before Wieters ever reaches Triple-A, to the central figure of Christianity on the eve of Wieters' Orioles debut and to a supreme being before the former first-round draft pick's first full season.
Wieters ultimately was no divine force in Baltimore. Over eight years, he batted .256/.318/.421 with 117 home runs and 437 RBIs. It is not fair to call a four-time All-Star a bust. It is fair to call his Orioles career a disappointment in some respects nonetheless.
Along the way, there were some miracles, good and bad, large and small. From his at-the-wire signing in 2007 to his 2016 regular-season finale, there were many moments when Wieters tested fans' faith. Did he live up to the prophecies? That depends on what you believe in.
Click on the photos above for a look back at Wieters' career.