Is Joel McNamara what the Lightning needed?

Amongst a flurry of activity leading up to the ML trade deadline last week, Seattle fans saw the return of one of the franchise's best and most popular players. At 38, Joel McNamara is no longer the young catcher that made the all star team for 6 consecutive seasons, and playing the role of hero in the franchise's only World Series team in Season 1. McNamara's trade may have seemed as a gesture of respect to give him the opportunity to return and retire with his original team, but nobody questions that McNamara can still play amongst the best. Immediately inserted as the Lightning's everyday catcher after being a platoon player for the Bison, McNamara has been rejuvenated in Seattle, and is hoping to lead his new team to a return to the postseason.

McNamara played a crucial role in the Bison's emergence to the top of the division in the last several seasons, but management decided that a youth movement was in order when the team sunk to the bottom of the division this season. Team spokesperson said "We were sad to see Joel go, but he had a chance to return home and possibly be a part of a winning team. Joel is a future Hall of Famer, and we wish him nothing but the best and thank him for his time with us and the passion and respect he showed to our fans."

McNamara brings his veteran presence and decent pitch calling abilities to the Lightning, and in his first 4 games, he is off to 5 hits in 10 at bats. Seattle fans are thrilled with the move.

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