NL Central Smackdown : Center Field
I'm jumping to center field because it's a bit of a mess and not nearly as interesting as left or right, which I'd like to save at least one of those for Monday.
|Player||3-Year Warp-3 Average
||3 Year Warp-3 Projection
||0.8 (1 year)||3.83||5|
|Rick Ankiel||2.1 (1 year)||3.37||1|
|Michael Bourn||1.2 (1 year)||1.37||6|
The Justification: This sure is a tough one. There's only one established player in the group in Mike Cameron and he's on the downside of his career. Ankiel causes some problems because he'll likely be moving back to right field as soon as the Cardinals deem Colby Rasmus ready. The Reds are currently employing a mess of players between Korey, Ryan Freel and Jerry Hairston Jr., although they probably have the best player of the group in Jay Bruce waiting in the minors, one of the top prospects in all of baseball.
But here's how I broke it down...
I gave Ankiel the top spot for now because, well, that's where he's playing. He's got the best arm out of the bunch, seems to be able to cover the ground and will at least hit for power. The Pirates seemed to have settled on McLouth and he's rewarding them with some incredible early season numbers. Cameron can still go get them in the outfield and will hit for enough power that I give him the nod over the Cubs and Reds situations. If it was just Jay Bruce, I'd probably have him at least at the three spot if not higher, but we all know about the manager there and who knows when he'll get his shot. Their current Frankstein-CFer would probably battle for the last spot with Michael Bourn. As for the Cubs, the Johnson/Pie combo gets the five spot from me right now,and that could end up swinging to the last spot or the top spot depending on how things break.
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