Friday, March 26, 2010

Shortstop breakdown

The season is getting close so let's get through these last few positions.

Orlando Cabrera (.284/.316/.389/.705/86, 9 HR, 77 RBI)

Orlando is one of the big offseason acquisitions for the Reds. He started last season in Oakland before being traded to Minnesota at the deadline. He struggled in pitcher friendly Oakland putting up an 81 OPS+ but turned it on in Minnesota posting a 94 OPS+ in the intensity of the playoff race. His defense is about average, nothing flashy but not a liability either. He brings 34 games of postseason experience with him and will help provide some veteran leadership that the Reds desperately need. I expect an improvement in the NL and GAB while maintaining his defense. Overall he is an upgrade over Alex Gonzalez, last seasons starter, and his backup Paul Janish.

Paul Janish (.211/.296/.305/.601/69)

The question with Janish has always been whether he has the bat to make it in the pros. Last season he struggled, hitting 100 points lower in OPS then Cabrara. If he could make up that deficieit he would be considered a solid player. Anything near a 90 OPS+ would be enough to secure the job but I am not sure he can do that. He can get away with his sub par batting because by all accounts he is an amazing shortstop. His range is expansive and he can make any play. There is still a chance he will improve since he is only 26 but that time is running out. For now he will backup Orlando and be ready to step in if there is an injury. I hope he can hit enough to take the job next season because he is a treat to watch with the glove.

Cabrara is the starter and will be given every chance to succeed. His hitting should be improve since he leaves cavernous Oakland in the AL to hitter friendly Great American in the NL. I expect a 95 OPS+ and average defense or let Janish have his chance.

No comments: