When star outfielder Josh Hamilton left the Texas Rangers to sign with the divisional rival Los Angeles Angels this past offseason, it was believed the team would struggle to find his replacement. After all, the former MVP has 162 game averages of .320 with 35 home runs and 120 RBI during his career.
Dan Marino continues his trek through each division in the major leagues and giving you one player he thinks is the: Rookie to Watch, Breakthrough Player, The Party’s Over, Non-Roster Invitee Most Likely to Stick, and Just Not Seeing it.
Now, in part five of six, he brings you the American League West:
Part 1: AL East Players to Watch.
Part 2: NL East Players to Watch.
Part 3: AL Central Players to Watch.
Part 4: NL Central Players to Watch.
Houston Astros (more…)
Filed under: Digging Deep - Analysis | Tagged: Alex Liddi, Alexi Ogando, Billy Buckner, Brandon Allen, Brandon Maurer, Daric Barton, Delino DeShields Jr., Erasmo Ramirez, Fernando Martinez, Houston Astros, Joe Blanton, Josh Hamilton, Justin Maxwell, Justin Smoak, Los Angeles Angels, Max Stassi, Michael Young, Mike Ekstrom, Mike Jacobs, Mike Olt, Miles Head, Neftali Feliz, Oakland A's, Oakland Athletics, Seattle Mariners, Taylor Lindsey, Texas Rangers, Tom Milone, Travis Blackley, Tyler Greene, Vernon Wells | 5 Comments »
Toolsy, middle infielders are thick as thieves in this system. Between Jurickson Profar (SS), Leury Garcia (SS), Luis Sardinas (SS), Rougned Odor (2B), Hanser Alberto (SS), it’s quite possible this is the reason the big club is considering moving Ian Kinsler off second base with Profar knocking on the door and if the others continue to develop making it easier to replace Elvis Andrus at SS if they are unable to sign him in two years. Overall, this is a system going through a transitional phase, but the upside of talent is still one of the best in the game. -Dave England
Below are our top 16 prospects with 2013 opening day age, position, and comments on each player. Below the top 16 is a small list of additional notable names. Enjoy.
Filed under: On the Farm - Prospects | Tagged: 2013 Top Prospects, Cody Buckel, Jairo Beras, Joey Gallo, Jorge Alfaro, Jurickson Profar, Justin Grimm, Leonys Martin, Leury Garcia, Lewis Brinson, Luis Sardinas, Luke Jackson, Martin Perez, Mike Olt, Neil Ramirez, Nick WIlliams, Nomar Mazara, Prospects, Ronald Guzman, Rougned Odor, Texas Rangers, Wilmer Font | Leave a Comment »
It’s now less than two months until pitchers and catchers report for spring training. We’ve finally gotten to the point of the offseason where teams are starting to scramble to fill the final holes on their rosters. Because the majority of the big-name free agents have already signed, the depths of the available player pool are starting to be plumbed. This makes the weeks leading up to spring training some of the most interesting to watch for diehard baseball fans.
***The Texas Rangers added another bat to their lineup by agreeing to a one-year contract with free-agent first baseman Lance Berkman. The switch-hitter will be 37 before the start of the season and played in only 32 games last year with the St. Louis Cardinals because of injuries. (more…)
Filed under: Digging Deep - Analysis | Tagged: Bobby Abreu, Boston Red Sox, Chicago Cubs, Dontrelle Willis, Free Agents, J.P. Howell, Javier Vazquez, Lance Berkman, Los Angeles Dodgers, Mariano Rivera, New York Yankees, San Francisco Giants, Sergio Romo, Texas Rangers | Leave a Comment »
The holiday season slowed down the hectic MLB offseason, which had operated on full blast for more than a month. Although many free agents have signed with new teams, there is still a lot going on around baseball as 2012 comes to an end.
***It may be the week after Christmas, but it’s never too late to share stories of baseball and good will. Steve Dilbeck of the Los Angeles Times wrote about a young fan’s actions and experience of a lifetime while attending a Los Angeles Dodgers’ game earlier this year.
11-year-old Jack Baur (no, not the guy from 24) was sitting in the stands during an August game when he was struck by a bat that slipped from the grasp of Los Angeles third baseman Hanley Ramirez and ricocheted off another child. Fortunately, both youngsters were okay. Security immediately retrieved the bat to return to Ramirez, but new team owner Magic Johnson saw everything transpire and brought autographed balls to the two boys and made sure they weren’t hurt. It turned out that wasn’t the end of the situation. (more…)
Filed under: Digging Deep - Analysis | Tagged: A.J. Pierzynski, Andrew Bailey, Boston Red Sox, Bruce Nash, Daniel Bard, Free Agents, Hanley Ramirez, Hideki Matsui, Jack Baur, Joel Hanrahan, John Farrell, Los Angeles Dodgers, Mark Melancon, New York Yankees, Pittsburgh Pirates, Russell Martin, Texas Rangers, Trades, Ugeth Urbina | Leave a Comment »
The baseball offseason is a busy time. Really, no further introduction is needed for the notes from this past week.
***The hyperbole machine has been revved up to a fevered pitch now that the 2013 National Baseball Hall of Fame ballot has gone out and people have started debating the merits of various candidates. I will surely go into who I would vote for at a later time, but for now can offer up these thoughts: (more…)
Filed under: Digging Deep - Analysis | Tagged: Boston Red Sox, Free Agents, Hall of Fame, Josh Hamilton, Kevin Youkilis, Los Angeles Angels, New York Mets, New York Yankees, Noah Syndergaard, R.A. Dickey, Ryan Dempster, Texas Rangers, Toronto Blue Jays, Trades, Travis d'Arnaud | 1 Comment »
If you happen to follow many baseball writers on Twitter, chances are your timeline was blowing up this past week. With MLB’s winter meetings taking place in Nashville, Tennessee, there was a lot of activity, as more free agents were taken off the market. Heck, there was even some trading going on. It was all part of the dance as we get closer and closer to the start of spring training.
***Perhaps the most shocking move to come out of the winter meetings was the Red Sox giving a three-year, $39 million deal to outfielder Shane Victorino. The Red Sox have publicly declared their new distaste in giving out large contracts of lengths exceeding more than three or four years. Apparently they are content with grossly overpaying players on shorter-term deals. (more…)
Filed under: Digging Deep - Analysis | Tagged: Alex Rodriguez, Angel Pagan, Boston Red Sox, Free Agents, Josh Lindblom, Jurickson Profar, Kevin Youkilis, Los Angeles Dodgers, Marco Scutaro, Michael Young, New York Yankees, Philadelphia Phillies, San Francisco Giants, Shane Victorino, Terry Francona, Texas Rangers, Trades, Zack Greinke | Leave a Comment »
The Boston Red Sox made the first big splash of the Winter Meetings by signing free agent slugger Mike Napoli to a three-year deal worth $39M. This signing fills the Red Sox’s need at first base and would allow them to make trades and maximize Napoli’s value if they give him time behind the plate.
Napoli brings even more power to the Red Sox. His .257 ISO since 2008 ranks 6th in all of baseball since 2008, his first of five consecutive 20+ homerun seasons, behind only Giancarlo Stanton, Albert Pujols, Jose Bautista, Russell Branyan, and Ryan Howard. If you make the requirement over that time a minimum of 2000 plate appearances then Napoli ranks fourth in ISO. (more…)
The Rangers are probably seeking a catcher or two, an outfielder and adding pitching both starters and bullpen help.
-Ian Kinsler, 2B: $75M throught 2017
-Adrian Beltre, 3B: $51M through 2015
-Yu Darvish, SP: $50.5M through 2017
-Derek Holland, SP: $24.3M through 2016
-Michael Young, UT: $16M through 2013
-Elvis Andrus, SS: $11.3M through 2014
-Nelson Cruz, OF: $10.5M through 2013
-Leonys Martin, OF: $8.75 through 2015
-Colby Lewis, SP: $2M through 2013
Arbitration Eligible Players [estimated salaries] (more…)
Filed under: Digging Deep - Analysis | Tagged: American League, Angel Pagan, B.J. Upton, David Price, Elvis Andrus, Free Agents, James Shields, Jeremy Hellickson, Jon Daniels, Josh Hamilton, Jurickson Profar, Justin Upton, Michael Bourn, Mike Olt, Nick Swisher, Offseason, Texas Rangers, Zack Greinke | Leave a Comment »
*** To say I loved the Red Sox signing catcher David Ross to a two year, $6.2 million free agent would be an understatement. He brings the kind of leadership, experience and defensive presence the Sox have lacked behind the plate for years. Although he won’t be a full-time starter he could play a significant role in changing the culture of managing the pitching staff and calling games.
*** The free-spending ways of the Los Angeles Dodgers seems to know no bounds. It was confirmed last week that they successfully bid $25.7 million for the chance to negotiate a contract with Korean left-handed pitcher Ryu Hyun-Jin. (more…)
Filed under: Digging Deep - Analysis | Tagged: Andrew McCutchen, Boston Red Sox, Colorado Rockies, David Ross, Free Agents, Hall of Fame, Hot Stove, Josh Hamilton, Los Angeles Dodgers, Mark McGwire, Mike Matheny, PEDs, Pittsburgh Pirates, Robin Ventura, Ryu Hyun-Jin, San Diego Padres, Texas Rangers, Trades, Walt Weiss, Yasmani Granal | Leave a Comment »