Saturday, January 10, 2015

Reasons to support the Stephen Drew signing

Well, Stephen Drew's a Yankee again. I know that's not news to any of you, but still, I find it tough to accept. Just over a month ago, it seemed Drew was destined for elsewhere. The Yankees had traded Martin Prado to the Marlins and publicly stated their intentions to let Rob Refsnyder and Jose Pirela compete for the 2015 second base job, so it looked like a sure thing Drew's short tenure with them was over.
Nonetheless, after Drew signed a one-year, $5 million deal with New York on Wednesday, it isn't, and neither apparently is the Yankees' inability to resist acquiring names. But that's not what I'm going to talk about here, because much as I'd prefer giving a youngster a chance, I don't hate Drew. In fact, I think he's an overall solid guy, and though it's a safe bet he'll struggle at times, I think he'll improve the Yankees. Here are a few reasons to support that, and keep in mind, I don't believe Drew will be a star. I simply expect him to contribute.
1. His Defense: I'll be honest, I know little to nothing about the gloves of Refsnyder and Pirela. I assume they're solid, but are they better than Drew's? Probably not. Drew's been one of the best defensive shortstops in the league for years now, and should only be better next season when he's a second baseman instead. Add on the fact Brendan Ryan and Didi Gregorius are also working the middle infield, and it's clear the Yankees have an alright group.
2. He's Better Than Ryan: Not that Drew's a great hitter, but is it really debatable whether or not he's better than Ryan? Drew's batted .256/.322/.425  in his career and Ryan .234/.295/.314, so the former certainly appears to be superior offensively. Granted, Drew was painful to watch in 2014, but most probably wouldn't be great either when their seasons start in late May. Now maybe you could still argue Ryan's the better defender, but how much is that worth when he's never getting on base? With Drew re-signed, Ryan's role with the Yankees will unquestionably be reduced, so it's necessary the two are compared. And when you do so, Drew is no doubt more likable, mediocre as he may be.
3. He Could Start if Needed: This sort of falls into the same category as the last one, but then again, it's different. Sure, having a good bench available when starters take days off is important, but then what about when starters get hurt? Basically, Drew could play everyday if needed. Yes, I'm aware he likely wouldn't be great at it, and yes, I'm aware he might still have the second base job come April. But in my opinion, he won't, so let's all just agree on the undeniable fact at hand: Drew is capable of starting, Ryan isn't. That kind of stuff matters a lot more than people usually acknowledge.
To put it simply, Drew signing this week won't be remembered for long, but for the year the contract lasts, it will definitely affect the Yankees. I'm one of those who assumes it will positively, and encourage those who don't to give Drew a chance. It's possible he'll struggle, but it's also possible he'll flourish. Let's just see what happens before we make too harsh of judgements.

43 comments:

  1. Love the optimism Jack, but here's why I can't support Drew. I'm going to ignore the fact that he hit .149 for us because I believe he's a better hitter than that. My problem is that he basically turns Refsnyder into our next Romine. Romine was a very promising catcher. Not a super star by any means, but a major league player for sure. You can go back and check his minor league stats if you want, but he was consistent and solid at every level. When he was 22-23, he was ready, but was jerked around between MLB and AAA. Girardi even had Stewart starting over him. Now we're left with a 26 year old ex-prospect that is burnt out and bored. Signing people like Drew is going to do the same thing for Refsnyder.

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    1. Drew is signed to a one year deal, and Refsnyder still has some work to do before truly being MLB-ready (mainly defense). This signing does not block him, or Pirela for that matter. Plenty of players have done well sitting on the "learning tree" (aka being a back-up for a season or so).

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    2. There is no room left on the bench for Refsnyder to "learn". And it doesn't matter if Drew is only signed for one year. Cashman is always signing a Drew, Roberts, Sizemore, or Young for "depth". The problem with depth, is that Girardi will always choose the veteran out of spring before he chooses a rookie. Also, a player will never be 100% ready coming out of the minors no matter how long he stays there.

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    3. The "learning tree" comment was in regards to whoever joins the Yankees' bench, not the guy that goes to AAA. On that note, I'd have one of Refsnyder or Pirela on the bench, while the other plays regularly in AAA. Anything other than that is the wrong thing.

      I will say that history has shown us that the Yankees will always sign a veteran like those you listed. But I choose to have faith in the team, and this apparent desire to get younger. There's a good chance I'm proven wrong, but so be it. Hell, that wouldn't be the first wrong thing I did or said in regards to the Yankees.

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    4. Bryan and Jeff...
      I hope Joe starts the youth movement and has the Drew types, be back-ups to the kids, not the other way around.
      Dreaming right? So, be it! Pushing a person is what it takes, sometimes, to make them do the job better than they thought they could do in themselve!

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    5. You're only getting four guys on this bench. John Ryan Murphy, Brendan Ryan, Chris Young and Garrett Jones. Refsnyder and Pirela are both AAA bound at this point, not destined to be bench players here.

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    6. Wow. That's a bench that strikes fear into opposing managers. I'm sure they're all rushing to readjust the bullpen to counter the offensive firepower from the Yankee bench.

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    7. Ryan could be cut but it is what it is. It's a bench.

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  2. Daniel ' Muscle Shoals ' Burch............

    I still see no final clarity in the Yankee bench. This offense is still anemic. Too anemic to compete.

    Now that they have Drew, he can be your swing man from SS, to 2ND. Or, the lefty, righty thing.
    Odd man out...Brendan Ryan. He has no offense. While Drew may come back to life.

    If they trade Ryan, and his $ 3MM...then Drew becomes a $ 2MM signing obligation.

    Refsynyder / Pirela...one of them, should get that bench seat, and play !
    Trades happen as ST draws near. Any of the four " bench players " you named, could be
    elsewhere in a trade package.

    Those types of ideas / thoughts, is what I was trying to extract.... from Hansel & Gretel.

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    1. That's the bench as it stands today. it could be improved or changed, sure, and I think it will be but that's what it is today. Ryan could be out, Pirela could be in.

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  3. CHRIS CAPUANO.......
    After the Drew signing, this one is just as confusing. No one wants these guys !
    And, for $ 5 MM, some say it's a good deal. Really ? This is a number 7-9 type starter.

    Chris Capuano, New York Yankees starting pitcher ? That sounds … weird / bizarre.
    Never expected a guy that was DFA last year, to be penciled into the 2015 rotation.
    But here we are. And, I am shaking my head.

    Time for another Coors Light......its been that kind of day.

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    1. Japan didn't even want him, that should show you something.

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  4. WHY NOT ?
    Tommy ' White Boy ' Twasp....if your watching, jump in.
    Plenty of room for you on the new 25 comment conveyor.

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  5. Dear Danica:

    I posted a month or so back the moves I would do. I first said sign Drew make him your everyday SS. He won't hit 160 and the guys glove is golden. Had your brother Cashman signed him from the start we would not have had to trade Greene and contrary to your belief I would rather have Greene over Capuano. I never would have pulled the trigger on a 220 platoon hitting SS when we already had that with Ryan. I never would have signed Capuano or traded Prado for that package of junk.

    Make fun now Danica but when Eovaldi is in the high fours low fives in era and has 4 or 5 wins for the year we will see what tune you're signing then.


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  6. HANSEL & GRETEL.......why so cheerful, on such a cold night ?

    I have read your response to me, twice, and I find it to be dumb. Colorful, but dumb.
    Lets dissect this one sided broadside, that you had sent over to me.

    The constant threads you use, are Shane Greene, and a package of junk.

    No one knows what Shane Greene is.....given his limited sample size.
    The Yanks gave Greene up to obtain Didi Gregorious. This young player will out hit Drew, on Drew's
    best day. He is a very fine fielder, with base stealing speed. When you see him in ST, you will know
    that the Yankees now have a very good athletic short stop.
    But, we don't need Gregorious, we already have Ryan ? You said that. Some would say that was dumb.

    I do agree with you on Capuano. Take him out of the conversation. He is irrelevant.

    The pile of junk, and Prado. The term ' pile of junk ' is dumb... Prado, along with Phelps, are gone.
    In return, the Yankees get a good young arm, in Germain. Also, Jones...a LH bat, who will do damage
    in the stadium....play first base / OF.
    Who am I forgetting ?
    Eovaldi, who throws 95-96 all game long !... And may be the next Nolan Ryan !

    Hanzel & Gretel, no one is making fun of you.
    Just the fact, that the biopsy on your post came back as ..........dumb.
    When All-Star, Eovaldi, finishes in the low threes, and is 18-5.....you can pick the tune.

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    1. Danica Danica Danica you apparently haven't realized that water is wet and the sky is blue. Making an asinine comment that what is Shane Greene and in the same breath mention Didi is absurd. Greene by no means is a stud pitcher, hell your boyfriend Cashman hasn't drafted one yet in his 18 years but that's another story.

      To actually say that the young player will outhit Drew is absurd. Drew sat out spring training and was never able to catch up. I think we need a wager on this situation. Again I ask you to look at reason which I am finding you're not of it? The numbers don't lie and and a light hitting 220 platoon shortstop is not what I call stellar.

      You're basing your facts on one season on Drew and there were circumstances that affected it. Your other absurd comment is about Eovaldi. Danica when are you going to realize that throwing 95-98 and straight with little movement means jack s_ _ t. Tell me why you disciple of Cashman has the kid has already been traded twice at such a young age? Why has this young man only won 15 games with such good stuff, oh that's right its because the Marlin's suck

      Then why is his career era well over 4? Having a crappy team does't affect the hits you give up. Oh that's right this flamethrower also have up the most hits in the NL, and by the way he faces 8 batters. Phelps was nothing special, however I know the guy can pitch in NY and he does listen to his coaches unlike Eovaldi who has been known not to listen to his coaches. And your best comment that he might be the next Nolan Ryan had me fall off my chair.

      I think you mean the next Nolan Ryan as a Met and not beyond. All you guys think Rothschild is the second coming of the Messiah and though I like him as a pitching coach he still hasn't fixed CC and a few others so lets not just yet say he will fix him. Danica in racing you need to stay out of traffic and stop hitting the wall because you're becoming concussed

      Prado is better than anything we have as an overall player. I think you have had one to many pops of Coors lite my friend.

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    2. Are you not making those same basis off one half year of Shane Greene? Did you watch him and follow him in the minors? If you did you saw that outside of one second half w/ Trenton he way out-performed himself and the back of his baseball card. He pitched like a young up and coming ace and he isn't.

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    3. His body of work is what it is, just as Didi's is what his is. We need arms that don't break down, that go long into games. Name a Yankee pitcher from last years team that is still on the roster that you feel confident won't break down or can give you length?????

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    4. We only need pitchers to go 5 or 6 innings, with a 7 or 8 inning thrown in sometimes from anyone. The teams pitching is what it is; C.C., Tanka, Pineda are in the rotation no matter what, but in my mind (ok, make a joke) that leaves us with two spots open. Whoever makes the greatest impression should be the number four and five pitchers.
      This is in a perfect world, I still have a feeling something is in the wind. Or, more like it, wishful thinking and a lot of hope! lol

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    5. No one Hans, which is the answer you expected. Greene's sample size doesn't suggest much to me. He had Tommy John surgery already and those things tend to come out of nowhere. Sure, I'd feel safer getting 200 IP out of Greene but it's not like he's a lock. We thought Nova was a lock last year, Tanaka too,

      How many IP does Eovaldi average per season?

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    6. He's more of a lock then anyone else from last year. You guys really need to comeback to reality with Eovaldi. Greedy how old is he and how many times was he traded already? Tell me his career win loss record and his career era? Don't give me a smart ass response just facts on the questions I asked. You guys are making it like we just picked up Nolan Ryan as per Danica on the next coming. All you guys get defensive when giving answers you don't want to give. Just show me the facts on Eovaldi and tell me why he is so good when everything about his career says otherwise?

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    7. He'll turn 25 in February, career ERA of 4.07, a win/loss record of 15-35, and he's been traded twice. I don't know where the Nolan Ryan comparison came from, but I don't think he's as bad as you think he is. He might be a bust and he might be an emerging front of the rotation starter. I don't know, and quite frankly, neither do you. I think you're being overly critical on 2 young players with very small sample sizes. (Didi, and Eovaldi)

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    8. The fact that he has been traded means absolutely nothing, especially when you look at what he was traded for the first time. You have to give something to get something and Hanley Ramirez was considered to be expensive when he was traded.

      I don't give a damn about a career win loss record and ERA for a 25 year old, sorry I don't. Also, I have never mentioned Eovaldi and Ryan in the same breathe and I never will, I merely mentioned he is young and can be worked with. I am not anointing Larry Rothschild either I am just expressing the fact that he can do his job better than a lot of pitching coaches out there.

      And finally, and once again, I never said he was good. I said he could be good, and he could. Greene could be an ace, but he isn't. Greene could be a bust, right now he's not.

      Could be and is are two different things... remember that with Eovaldi AND Greene.

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    9. I know, right? Pretty odd ways to evaluate talent. I guess you have to never get traded and be a Cy Young caliber pitcher at 24 years old to get Ken's stamp of approval.

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    10. I never said you did Daniel so chill out. Patrick did, you guys can not have a discussion without an attitude.

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    11. You guys have no clue what so ever in having a rationale discussion. Let's see I believe you said this Daniel and I quote "look at what he was traded for the first time. You have to give something to get something and Hanley Ramirez was considered to be expensive when he was traded" I believe their is a major drop-off in the next trade of Eovaldi because Ramierz isn't Prado

      Let's see here over the course of the last 5-10 years who has been a better GM, Cashman or Dombrowski? Yes I hate Cashman but rightfully so. Dave D is a superior GM and if he is comfortable with Greene in his rotation then I feel comfortable as well. We have a rotation better suited for the red cross and all you guys keep saying with Eovo he gives us innings and he was traded for this guy so that must account for something, yet when I say he was traded twice already and given up a good player in Prado you all jump on me like white on rice. What's a matter we live in France now? Didi will be a bust and so will Eovaldi and thats my opinion, you don't like it stick it some where and before you make a claim I said you were the specific one to say it check the post again

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    12. Here you go Danny cut from Danica's post.....Eovaldi, who throws 95-96 all GAME long !... And may be the next Nolan Ryan !

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    13. Rational conversations occur when rational people converse. Most of us admitted that Eovaldi very well could be a bust, while also believing that he could improve on his small sample size. With all due respect, it is you that refuses to look at anything or anybody from any other point of view.

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    14. I don't have an attitude Mr. Hans, I am simply bantering back and forth with you. I'm not saying there wasn't a major drop off the second time around, in fact I agreed with you from the get go, the problem and where we differ is I'm not ready to give up on a 25 year old kid with upside, you sound like you are.

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    15. The fact that Didi is so young and never had a full season where he didn't split time in the minor leagues and the majors or split time between the bench and the starting role goes to show you what his numbers mean, absolutely nothing.

      The guy hit will over .300 last season the last month of the season when he was basically playing everyday. Will he be Derek Jeter in his prime if he's given 150 games a season? Doubt it, that's why Jeter was special. Will he better than Brendan Ryan? I'd bet money on it. The sample size and the circumstances (I believe that term was used here) cannot be ignored for Didi. Didi basically comes in as a rookie and an unknown since he has had a limited amount of opportunities.

      And before you turn that around that speaks more to the absolute depth Arizona has/had at SS and less about Didi himself. Didi probably was the lesser of the two SS's between him and Owings but that doesn't mean he's terrible either.

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    16. HANSEL & GRETEL......the last three posts, by Jeff & Daniel, sounds like they
      don't want to go on a Key West cruise with you.
      They would not want men either. That's fine with me, I'd rather stay in Jimmy Buffets saloon, chase women, and lunch on conch. I did say conch.

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  7. I don't see any #3-4-5 pitchers as a lock as starters...plus our #1 and 2 pitchers are HIGH RISK to see the DL at some point of the year. I wouldn't be surprised to see a few of the guys from the farm pitching before the end of the year. And doing a fine job, as they did last year!
    I am not sold on the idea having Drew play SS or 2nd base. My choice would be, DF Ryan and let one of the kids try playing the 2nd base job. I am sure they would out hit Drew, and be adequate at 2nd base until they got use to the speed of the game. It took Drew almost a month and a half to get the footwork down pat, I think it goes without saying Refsy and Pirela are working as we write, on "The FEETS, they are a worken!". LOL

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    1. No way Drew goes to the bench. No way. Refsnyder and Pirela both could go 25-25 in ST and hit 25 home runs and Drew still starts at 2B. It's the Yankee, and Joe Girardi, way.

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    2. You Are right Daniel...
      It was the way for both Joes', they were given young players and they kept playing the older guys!
      I am under the impression (wishful thinking?), Cashman is changing things! My idea of a way to the Gold would be just as he is doing right now. Signing vets for almost nothing (Drew), bring up some kids in spring training, see how they do!
      We have a few guys that are more than ready to step up; Nick Rumbelow-RHP, Tyler Webb-LHP, James Pazos-LHP, Branden Pinder-RHP, Jacob Lindgren-LHBP, Jose Pirela-RHB, Refsnyder-RHB...just a few of the players that need to get a look see.
      As one can see, we have a plethora of starting and BP pitchers if any of them show real talent they could have maybe two or more going north.
      Of course, this is just a thought, we have seen them do stuff that is, shall we say...questionable!
      Now with the two Cubans out there for the pickings, maybe this is the backup plan if they don't sign them!
      There are so many ways to go, it is anyone's guess!
      Have fun, if you like mind games...as I do!

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    3. Only way Cashman changes anything is to not give Girardi the veteran vs. prospect option. If all you have is Refsnyder or Pirela you're going young. He brought Drew and keeps Ryan around to give Girardi the choice.

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  8. HANSEL & GRETEL......stirring up the pot.

    I have done my homework. Having read the spirited posts at the Greedy today.
    Spirited is a good term. Better than mortuary.

    Will try to be concise, so much back, and forth today . Just what this site needs.

    This seems to come down to Brian Cashman, Gregorious, Greene, and Eovoldi.

    Hanzel, your opinions are spirited....but you need me to unlock the truth. So, here goes...

    @ Brian Cashman : All off season he has been creating bold moves. Creating a death like bullpen, and
    formulating a young pitching staff. And, he is not done...the future is right around the corner.
    You mention Dombrowski ? A Pollock as a GM is not the road I would go down.

    @ Didi Gregorious : Sometimes your remarks seem dumb. I will state right now, that if he stays
    healthy you are looking at 15 HR, and a 260-270 avg. player. Drew's worst nightmare.

    @ Shane Greene : Again, the Polish GM wanted him. What does that tell you ?
    He could be OK as the season unfolds, or he turns into a kielbasa. My quess ?...southbound.

    @ Eovoldi : Because he has been trade twice, and throws straight...you put him up on the cross.
    That is dumb.
    He is very young, throws 95-96 all day, and can be taught. Larry Rothschild, will put Eovoldi in
    his laboratory, and come back with a Nolan Ryan type pitcher.
    You laugh, but the Mets stopped laughing, after they say what they gave away.

    Bonus comment : Prado...wish him well, and thank him for Eovoldi.

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  9. WHAT IF..............
    If Yoan Lopez ....21 yr old / Cuban / RH pitcher...who can touch 100 mph.
    If he signs with the Yankees, prior to that 6 /15 date, will he be in this years starting rotation ?
    If yes, as a number 3-4 ?

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    1. He could sign tomorrow if he wanted to but I doubt it. He's 21 years old and will "need" some seasoning in the minors. I've seen weirder things but my guess is no, not even if he signed today. Unless of course we have another injury riddled season, then anything could happen.

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  10. I CAN NOT HELP BUT WONDER....regarding Alex Rodriquez.

    Like all of you, I know everything negative, and positive regarding Alex.
    Would have to be an idiot not to.
    Put everything aside, and be open minded on this.

    Alex, as a pure bat. A Hall of Fame bat type..open minded, right ?
    Alex comes to ST, proves himself worthy of a spot, with no playing on the field. You can see that ?

    As an everyday DH in 2015 he gives you vintage Big Popi numbers? Maybe yes, maybe no. Who knows ? This is all about hand / eye coordination at this point in his life.

    Would that not be a great addition?
    He is capable of putting up those type of numbers, and who is to say he will not ?
    Time will tell. I wish him well. He is with the Yankees, for the next three years.

    So many question marks. Remember ' Question Mark, and the Mysterians' ?..from the mid 60'S ?
    Music lovers will.

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    1. If he came in and hit 265 and slugged 20+ home runs I think the Yankees have to be ecstatic about that and I think that truly balances and strengthens the lineup. Not saying I think it will or it wont happen, but if it did that's a game changer.

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  11. With or without a bat, he rated as one of the most Talented SS from the 90's to the Yankees. He out-hit everyone and outplayed almost everyone as a SS!
    If our SS of last year can put up so, so numbers at 40 years old. I believe (hope) A-Rod can improve the Yankee line-up...talent is there, power is still there...I think, he can do better than most pundits let on...IF he is healthy. This guy has an EGO and will not do any less than to go for 3,000 hits (61 needed), 714HRs. (needs 60), RBIs (needs 328 for #1).
    Can or will he, reach those numbers within two years, I have no idea!

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    1. If he gets enough at bats, health and the manager making the calls, I can't see a way where he doesn't reach at least the hits and home runs.

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)