Kalish flashed a handy contact bat and a power-speed combo during two months of 2010 MLB work, filling in for a then-injured Jacoby Ellsbury and Mike Cameron, who was traded away at the non-waiver deadline. If you can get away with stashing the soon-to-be 24-year-old in ALs for a reasonable price, he could be a late-season boon. No bother considering him for mixed drafts, but he's worth a pre-emptive tuck-away - especially in deep leagues - if his rehab goes smoothly, say, around April.
However, there are reasons to temper enthusiasm about Quentin's return to the National League. First, he moves from a home venue that increased right-handed batter home runs by 38% to one that is neutral in that regard. Second, while he's avoided the DL, assorted aches and pains keep him out of the lineup frequently. In his four seasons as a full-timer, he still does not have a 500 AB season. And finally, his BA's of .236, .243, and .254 the past three seasons won't be helped by Petco Park's tendency to decrease RHB BA by 12%. The Boston Red Sox got their replacement for the departed Jonathan Papelbon, as they acquired Andrew Bailey (RHP, BOS) from the Oakland A's. Bailey has 75 saves over the past three seasons, and while his ERA rose from a lucky 1.47 in 2010 to 3.24 last season, he again displayed elite skills in 2011 (8.9 Dom, 3.4 Cmd, and 104 BPV). He is expected to begin the season as Boston's closer. The Oakland A's have indicated that the closer opening created by the Bailey trade will be filled through a three-player competition in spring training, involving Grant Balfour (RHP, OAK), Fautino De Los Santos (RHP, OAK), and Joey Devine (RHP, OAK). Let's see what each brought to the table in 2011. Dayan Viciedo (OF, CHW), who can now slide free of a corner backup role and into the everyday lineup. His callup to CHW in the 2nd half of last year yielded unremarkable numbers, but overall he showed nice growth in 2011. In particular, his once-problematic plate patience showed signs of reaching acceptable levels:
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When everything is set and done, here is my projection for him for 2012: .292 (168-575), 27 HR, 85 RBI, 85 R, 10 SB, .323 BABIP, .336 OBP, .492 SLG If he could stay on the field the entire season the numbers would be even better. While he has never shown that he can consistently draw walks, he also has consistently posted a .300+ BABIP (.317 for his career) and strikeout at under a 20% clip. That makes the improved average far from a stretch, especially when you couple it with improved power. He’ll turn the magical age of 27 this season, which also lends credence to a potential further breakout. With the opportunity to produce as well, Jones is a solid option as a #2 outfielder in all formats heading into 2012.
When you start looking at these two players there is a lot to like about both of them. Yes, Tulowitzki may have a little bit of an advantage in the power department, though it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Cano reach into the low 30s as well. Cano likely has the advantage in the average, run and RBI departments, though those again should be extremely similar. Could Tulowitzki steal a few more bases? Sure, but it isn’t going to be enough. The numbers are going to be close and their ceilings are similar, but what distinguishes the two for me is the floor. We basically know what Cano is going to do and those numbers are going to be special. With Tulowitzki, would it be a major surprise to see him miss a bulk of time and severely underperform? That fact is more than enough for me. I may be in the minority, but if I am left with a decision between the two I am going to be selecting Cano every time.
Will Nick Swisher still be a Yankee by the end of the 2012 season? Nick Swisher has struggled badly in the playoffs since arriving in New York, batting a mere .160 (16-for-100), and coming under plenty of fire as being one of the reasons the Yanks have sputtered in the postseason the past couple of years. He looked like a candidate to be bought out, but New York opted to exercise the $10.25-million option for 2012. In the regular season, Swisher continued to be among the patient hitters at the plate, averaging at least four pitches per at-bat for the eighth straight season – comprising his entire big league career to date. Several teams have been sniffing around the Yanks, asking about Swisher in trade talks, and it will be interesting to see how the team – suddenly exercising financial prudence — approaches the situation with him hitting free agency after the 2012 season.
RotoRob talk about how the Yankees are looking doubtful to sign SS Nakajima after winning the exclusive right to negotiate a deal. NYY have until Fri to come to terms with the 29 year old.