What is your opinion of the A.J. Pierzynski signing?
MJH on accountability
I believe the benefits of Mike Young learning first base are not just for the team but also for himself.
I've been thinking about Mike Young's situation at 3rd base. He's in Texas for at least another three years, and who knows, maybe he will play third that whole time. After that though (and if not before) the Rangers are going to want him to do something else like play 1st, 2nd, or DH (if they resign him). Considering he is not a 30 home run bat a DH role for the long run seems unrealistic. It seems like he should be the first one ready to learn first base considering he will need to play somewhere in order to stay an everyday player for the next 10 years like I think he wants to (and I'm not sure teams will want him at 2nd in the long run). In other words, its not only about sacrificing for the team, its also about his self interest for extending his career and making sure he's a lock for being an everyday player wherever he ends up, in TX or elsewhere. And 1st base doesn't have to be a 30 home run position I don't think, a producer like Young I think a lot of teams would welcome at 1st if he could learn how to scoop (of all the infield positions it is the easiest so long as you can scoop of course, which is not easy). It seems like if the Rangers sign Beltre and move Young to DH/infield utility that this would provide the perfect opportunity for him to learn 1st in a low pressure situation backing up Moreland.
Or is it more likely he will play 2nd base to finish out his career? Can you see teams, in case Texas doesn't resign him after 2013, playing Young at 2nd or is 1st more likely? Left field? What position would give Young the best shot at securing a chance at the longevity necessary to get to 3,000 hits?
I MEAN THESE QUESTIONS FOR REAL. DON'T JUST RESPOND BY SAYING THAT YOU WANT YOUNG OFF 3RD. TRY TO THINK OF IT FROM HIS PERSPECTIVE AND IN TERMS OF HIS LONG TERM INTEREST.
Its sort of a thought experiment on his behalf.
I don't think he can play 2B anymore... 2B is more about range, Mike doesn't have much range. 3B is more about quick reactions and a strong arm. Mike should be able to learn and play 1B at an average level and I also think his bat is just fine to be an every day DH (his power numbers will drop but he can still reach the gaps, depends on what you want out of your DH). However, he's too much of a gamer and I highly doubt he'll settle for sitting on the bench the entire game and only getting up when it's his turn to bat. Mike wants to play every day... I think it would be in his best interest to learn 1B and accept a 1B/DH role in the future, with either the Rangers or another club.
I think if MY wants to continue to wear a baseball glove he will need to learn 1B. MY has been a cornerstone of this franchise for a long time so I would prefer we find a way to bring this up tactfully. Much like NY is going to have to do with Jeter next year, the Rangers must relate the mutual benefits of a position change. Mike getting more rest, and learning to play firs could prolong the number of productive years we have left from himt. I am still not high on Beltre, but I'd rather invest in him than overpay for Soriano or D Lee. I'd love to sign Beltre to a 1 yr 16-18 mil and let him put up another stellar FA year again, but I don't see Boras letting that happen. I think what does help us is that Boras and Angels ownership/front office don't like each other. Maybe we can steal him at the last minute even though we have been saying we aren't interested.
Young would whiff at balls playing 1B the same way he does on smashes hit to 3B.
He is not tall enough for high throws and would never get proficient at one hoppers or be flexible enough to stretch.
The great and even very good first basemen have been playing it forever. We don't need a $16 million dollar experiment at a critical defensive position.
MY is 34 and still hits. He has always been portrayed as a team player. I would be inclined to tell him what is best for the team and he will follow suit. What should be his role going forward? DH and part-time 1B seem to be the most thrown around ideas. Do you want a bad fielding 3rd baseman or 1st baseman? After his contract expires... he will be no more than a utility player on a contender or an everyday player on a team that does not know how to spend its money.
I wasn't suggesting that Young ought to become our starting first basemen, but rather that he could move to DH/Infield utility, a big part of which could be backing up Mitch Moreland. I think if the Rangers had him at DH for the next two to three years he could learn to play 1st so that he could perhaps play that position to finish out his career wherever he ends up. If he got good enough at 1st, and you seem to think you know for sure that he can't (I don't have a crystal ball), I could see the Rangers starting him there if they could move Mitch Moreland to left field because who knows where we will be in 3 or more years with contracts for Cruz, Hamilton, and others.
For me, Young's bat is insufficient for 1B, and he's too short for the position defensively. The place, to me, where his bat and remaining athleticism play the best over the next several years would be as a NL RF/LF. He's a gamer, and a smart player. He has a plus arm for the OF. And I think his bat would be enough for thouse positions. If he wants to be hitting in the middle of a lineup and wearing a glove daily 2 years from now, this is the move. However, it's not a move he can make with the Rangers. It's a move he would have to be traded to make.
I don't see Young moving to DH. I'm pretty sure that we'll sign Vlad, and there's no way that I want him in the outfield.
I want Young off 3rd :)
Hardy hardy har Marky, I'm rolling on the floor.
Glad I could make you smile, Joey. Merry Christmas.
Someone says that Young could be a DH, that it depends on what you want out of your DH, and I think that is true. I think in the short run in Texas he could be our DH as long as we replaced him at third with a big enough bat to offset the loss of power at DH. I think the Rangers have enough power right now that they can afford having a guy like Young playing DH. However, since most teams don't have the power depth that we have I think it is more unrealistic in the long run (the next 10 years) for Young to expect to play DH. That's why I introduced the discussion about which position he might should learn. I thought the comments about left field were interesting.
Someone said Mike was too short for 1B. He's 6'1''. I understand a taller first baseman can reach high throws easier and has longer legs to stretch, but that's about the only advantage. Adrian Gonzales is 6'2'', Kevin Youkilis is 6'1'', Lance Berkman is 6'1'' and so on... He's not 5'8''. Is he the ideal 6'4'' power slugging first baseman, no -- but I think he could learn to play the position at an average level. Well enough that with his bat, he could be a successful 1B/DH combo for the Rangers or someone else in the future.
He is athletic, he is a gamer, he's been around, he's smart... I do agree though that the COF position in the NL could work for him. Plus having played (if he learns 1B) all four infield positions could bode well for him if he wants to latch on to a team in his latter years. I think he has a place in this game for several years to come, as long as he can still produce with the bat. I'd love for him to end his career here, but I wouldn't be surprised to see Mike in the NL playing COF/1B/3B for a team like last years Giants.
I'll take the unpopular positition and say leave him at third for the next few years. To everyone who wants to move him to first I would ask how many opportunities per game does a first baseman have to handle the ball compared to a third baseman? I'm no statistician but I would imagine at least 6-8 more opportunities per game at first. If the whole basis for making the move is an actual/percieved lack of defensive ability wouldn't it make sense to keep a better fielding player (aka Moreland or even Davis) at first given the number of plays that position is involved in. Secondly, its not as if he can't catch the ball or make the throw across the diamond. At third he suffers from poor positioning not decreased range. Positioning comes directly from experience and coaching and his fielding improved dramatically from 09 to 2010 which means he is still learning the position and our coaches are continuing to work with him. Offensively he managed to finish in the top 10 of third baseman in the majors and only three third baseman contributed more runs per game to their team than Young and Beltre wasn't one of them. The only area Beltre outperformed Young last year was defense and since 2003 Beltre has only out performed Young offensively two other seasons in '04 and' 07.If I were JD I'd be looking at those stats and thinking that it's about time for Beltre to take another two year hiatus from hitting and spend my money addressing the Starting Rotation and building the foundation for some trade deadline magic in July.
The perceived problem is not a problem with defensive ability but rather with ability at third base. Yes the first baseman touches the ball more but in a way that is generally less challening than the shots that the third baseman has to deal with.
No one is saying that Beltre is better offensively either. We are hoping that we will have both Beltre and Young in the lineup.
Also, no one is talking about making Young the everyday 1st baseman but rather moving him to DH/Infield utility while learning first base to back up Mitch Moreland.
I understand and can appriciate all those points. I also tend to agree that Beltre would indeed be an upgrade at third over Young. However I don't see how overpaying for a marginally better and far more inconsistent player in Beltre vastly improves this team. He's already turned down 5 years and 70 million from Anahiem. He's asking for a sixth year which would place it somewhere around 84 mil. That's far too much. Perhaps if he were 27 or 28 and more consistent at the plate I can see making that type of investment but he'll be 32 at the start of the season and even if he finds consistancy at the plate for the duration of those six years his defence will begin to fall off within the next three years and we will be talking about him the same way we are discussing Young.
I am also skeptical of Beltre. He scares me, and so does his agent. My dream scenario is a Boras being so pissed at the Angels that he pushes for a 1 year high dollar deal and try the FA market again next year. While I know this is highly unlikely, a guy can dream can't he?
Right there with your dream scenario. Nothing against the player in general just don't like him attached to a long term contract.
The dream senario goes something like this:Rangers move MY to DH, with the infield utility tag included. this would come to about 65 starts in the field. drawback is that we would have to find a backup 1st baseman in spring training. i'll live with that. possible backups include Treanor, MY, Murphy, or Max Ram.
Rangers sing Betre to be starting 3rd baseman. this instanly increases our defense, and line up protection. i dont know what the WAR difference is, so i wont cmment on that. this also really messes with the Angels plans. the draw back is that it will probably take 6 years and 86 million to sign him. this is where Greenberg and other patners get involved.
Rangers sign Webb to be our number 2 starting pitcher. this leaves Lewis at the 3 hole where i just feel more comfortabe with. this also allows our younger pitchers like Kirkman, Perez, Erlin, Font, Wieland, or Scheppers to develope.
Florida finally wakes up and realizes that they need to trade Joshson, and the Rangers oblidge, sending Perez, Scheppers, R. Erlin, E. Beltre, Chris Davis, J. Skole and a player to be named for Josh Joshson and Adalberto Mendez.
Like i said at the beginning this is a dream senario.
I have no desire to sign Beltre for more than a 3 or 4 year contract. Five or six would be foolhardy. I do think he would improve the team but a long contract like that would be stupid. I'm hoping he will want to play in Texas to win and will take a shorter contract to that end. Also, the moving Young to DH scenario is much much less about Beltre for me and much much more about all of the possible benefits of moving Young to DH/Infield Utility. But you can't do it without signing someone like Beltre who is a plus glove and a plus bat (most likely).
Notify me of follow-up comments via email.