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January 11, 2009

First Take On Young Situation

In case you missed it...


1. I expected this to happen around January 2010, not now.

2. Here's what I wrote about Young a month ago for the upcoming Hardball Times Season Preview 2009. Consider it your sneak preview: "A broken finger and other nagging injuries resulted in six-year lows in average, OBP, and slugging percentage. He should rebound, but even if healthy, he’s not the .331/.385/.513-hitting marvel of 2005. In a strange coincidence, he won a Gold Glove just as discussion of a potential move to a less demanding position heated up. Young is popular, works tirelessly, leads by example and supplies intangibles by the bushel. Unfortunately, he’s also 32, not that far above-average at this point, and is just beginning a five-year, $80 million extension signed in 2007."

3. Elvis Andrus's Minor League Equivalency is .236/.279/.289. In terms of what that portends for 2009, I think that's pessimistic, but not by much. He's just 20, and his career line in full-season minor leagues is .272/.338/.357. 2008 was his best year for contact and his worst for walks and power. He could be worth 20 runs in the field and -20 at the plate in 2009.

4. Given the above paragraph, this situation indicates just how little Texas thinks of its internal options and the free-agent market at third, even as stopgaps. Or, it indicates how much Texas wants to get out from under (some of) Young's contract. Or some of each.

5. Being limited to about 35-40 players, I couldn't justify a Hardball Times entry for Elvis Andrus. Ah, well.

Posted by Lucas at January 11, 2009 11:49 PM