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The tater trots for June 15: Youkilis gives Boston fans some good vibes while Angel Pagan may have stopped at first.

With the NBA Finals and Stanley Cup Finals wrapping up in the last five days, baseball is finally all by itself for the summer. Feels good.

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March 10, 2010 9:00 am

Fantasy Beat: Hot Spots: Outfield


Rob McQuown

Rob McQuown discusses the fluid outfield situations in White Sox, Mets, and Rays camps.

Stop me if you've heard this one: “Andruw Jones reported to camp in the best shape of his life!” Unlike when Guillen sniped about Kenny Williams obtaining Griffey 20 years too late, Guillen is the one with fond memories of a tremendous athlete patrolling CF and bashing homers like a Hall of Famer. And so far, he's passing the auditions in spring training, continuing to see playing time in center field. He has just 9 PA, but has started 3 times in center field, and has 2 stolen bases already – giving some indication of how hard he's working to impress, if nothing else. PECOTA loves Rios' chances of bouncing back strong, and it would take a continuation of September's nightmare for him to lose much playing time. But Pierre's noodle arm (something like -40 runs “contributed” over his career, depending upon the calculations used) is safely in left field for now, as early indications are that the team is serious about using Andruw as the backup in center field.

Normally, spring stats mean little; and preseason reports on health mean less. But Andruw Jones is competing for playing time with Mark Kotsay. And, while (Sox radio broadcaster) Ed Farmer can say that he likes Mark Kotsay better in every way than Johnny Damon, PECOTA doesn't envision him posting stats commensurate with a starting outfielder or DH. In 2009, Matt Diaz had undergone a fitness transformation, and was stealing bases in spring training, and ended up stealing 14 bases in just 425 PA, easily his career best. With the new emphasis on “speed and defense” on the South Side (which ironically involves their two best base thieves from 2009 going to Kansas City), Andruw's chances of adding some steals to his stat line this season aren't bad. He won't approach his career-high total of 27, but now that the team has confidence in his ability to play defense, he could see enough playing time to crank out 15 or more home runs and steal 10 bases. The fly in the ointment is that the team is still overloaded with righty bats, and Kotsay will be very tempting to play somewhere against almost all right-handed pitchers; since Pierre, Rios, and Quentin will play as much as their health allows, that limits Jones to about 60% for now.

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January 8, 2008 12:00 am

Transaction Analysis: Breaking in the New Year


Christina Kahrl

The Swisher deal, Cardinal risks, and say Nomo forever.

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April 5, 2007 12:00 am

Schrodinger's Bat: In the Arms of an Angel


Dan Fox

The move to send down a once promising regular is usually a permanent one.

"[Angel Berroa] is still going to be a heck of a player. [Andres] Blanco has got a long way to go even before he considers himself in Angel Berroa's category."
--Royals Manager Buddy Bell in September of 2006

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