Friday, May 20, 2011

The Gaping Hole

In reading a typically strong effort from Joe Posnanski about the payroll sinkhole in which the Yankees will find themselves in two years, I was struck by the passage on Mark Teixeira:

Mark Teixeira (33 years old, $22.5 million). Tex has five years left on his contract after this year. I think this contract could actually work out fine. Tex plays hard, he’s a switch-hitter, he’s good defensively, he will take a walk — I think his skills could stretch out.

The problem with Tex has little to do with Tex — it’s that we live in an era in which hard-hitting first basemen are everywhere. I’ve been over this list before, but again, I would ask you to choose from these first basemen:

• Mark Teixeira
• Albert Pujols
• Adrian Gonzalez
• Miguel Cabrera
• Joey Votto
• Prince Fielder
• Ryan Howard
• Eric Hosmer

Where would you draft Tex from that list? Third? Fifth? Last? And you can throw in Ike Davis, Justin Smoak, Matt LaPorta, the surprisingly hot Gaby Sanchez, the now-third-baseman Kevin Youkilis, the surprisingly sturdy Paul Konerko, the former MVP Justin Morneau and a bunch of other young guys. Tex’s all-around play and the hope that he will age well might move him near the top. But we seem to be moving to a time where just about every team in baseball will have a first baseman who hits roughly like Mark Teixeira.

Except the Braves.


TJ Eckleburg12 said...

I thought the exact same thing when I read that also.

...But we have Freddie Freeman! upppppppppppside

...I'm worried he'll never develop 25+ power and will always be a gap-power kind of guy.

Caelus said...

I would like to give Freddie at least a couple of years to develop. He seems to hang in pretty good against left handers.

And boy, do I love his glove. Mariner infield would have another 20-25 errors if it were not for Freddi's magic.