Another cog in the wheel known as the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy to combat the Extreme Left-Wing Media.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

AL CENTRAL Third Base rankings

What does it say about the AL Central that the consensus pre-season favorite (Twins) signs the third baseman (Munson) the Tigers released so they could start a catcher (Inge) at the hot corner?

1. Cleveland - Aaron Boone Boone is an improvement defensively and can hold his own with a bat. If Boone's surgically repaired knee fails Casey Blake would be moved back from the outfield. While only average defensively, Blake was one of the top offensive 3B.

2. Chicago - Joe Crede Crede has been expected to have a breakout season the last couple years. At 27 years old if he doesn't show improvement soon he might never.

3. Detroit - Brandon Inge Inge was moved out from behind the plate last year playing 3B and CF. His offensive performance improved as he hit .287 with 13 homers. The Tigers must be under the impression that his defense will improve with a full time position.

4. Minnesota - Eric Munson While hitting with power when he connects, Munson doesn't hit enough for the power to matter much. His defense is nothing to write home about either. If Munson doesn't make the team out of Spring training, Michael Cuddyer will move from 2B. That would significantly weaken second base so I'm guessing the Twins go with Munson.

5. Kansas City - Chris Truby will take over for the departed Joe Randa now with Cincinnati. Truby will wear Carlos Beltran's old number 15 and that will be the extent of the similarities. He won't hold the job long as Mark Teahan is breathing down his neck. Mark Teahan was a piece of the Beltran deal last year. He doesn't have an official At-Bat in the majors yet but gave a good performance in the Arizon Fall League and is expected to take over in June.


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