Wednesday, August 04, 2010

A Note on Mitch Moreland (and the nature of my FAAB logs)

Nooten didn't entirely agree with my write-up on Mitch Moreland this weekend.
i wouldn't be so dismissive of Moreland's potential - looking closer at his 2010 AAA numbers, he got off to a slow start in April, but his production (and his power) increased significantly across the board every month after that. in July he hit .320/.393/.520. nothing to sneeze at, to be sure.

i also bet that he sticks when Kinsler comes back. the 1B job in Texas is wide open, and Cantu is no permanent solution - the rangers have had suffered at 1B for a couple years now, and just want a RH/LH platoon at this point. if Moreland hits, then he will stay.
I don't necessarily disagree with any of Nooten's analysis. While I'd be wary of the small July sample size, sometimes you do have to look at the smaller picture with minor leaguers to discover if something improved in their game. I don't know if Moreland changed something in his swing or approach after April, but if he did that certainly would make a difference.

And, yes, it's possible that Moreland winds up starting at 1B for the Rangers long-term. Jorge Cantu is a free agent this winter and I'm assuming he's just a rental. There are one or two appealing/interesting options slated to be out there this winter, but if the Rangers are as hamstrung financially in December as they are now, they might not be in on any of them.

Most of my FAAB log comments are geared toward teams playing for this year (since that's where I hope most of you are after reading my advice all year long). These are the corner infielders in my A.L.-only on the five remaining serious contenders:

1st place: Billy Butler, David Ortiz, Michael Young
2nd: Alex Gordon, Alex Rodriguez, Kevin Youkilis
3rd: Kevin Kouzmanoff, Carlos Pena, Nick Swisher
4th: Adrian Beltre, Lyle Overbay, Ty Wigginton
5th: Miguel Cabrera, Michael Cuddyer, Mark Teixeira

Perhaps Moreland might be an upgrade on Gordon, Overbay or Wigginton the rest of the way. However, it's tough to recommend a hitter to a contender whose power output matches Overbay's (considered a disappointment by most, even in A.L.-only) without taking the MLE into account. A week from now, if Carlos Pena does wind up on the D.L., Moreland certainly would have been on the top of my list if he were still available.

Your hope at this point if you're contending is that you're going to do better than Moreland on your roster. He's a more than capable fill in but if you have to rely on him for the last eight weeks down the stretch, things probably aren't going well for your squad...even in an A.L.-only.

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