>Seattle – Here is a rundown of Seattle’s lineup heading into S12.
1. 2B –
– Management is hoping he can cut down on those K’s and improve the OBP. He takes over full time for Brett Siddall (Type A signed with Fargo) at 2B. With over 700 Plate Appearances last year he batted .296/.364/.364. So while there isn’t much pop there (especially in Safeco), they just want him to get on base for Bum and Willie!
2. RF –
– Lee made a late season appearance last year and struggled. An infielder while coming up thru the farm system, he’ll start the year out in RF with the injury to Alex Randolph and should be just fine defensively. Hitting in front of Bum Stocker should enable him to see some more fastballs. Seattle needs him to also get on base in front of Bum.
3. 3B –
– Stocker had his best season by far last year with 51 HR’s, setting a team record. He also hit .325/.381/.637, which in Safeco is no small feat. He was offered on the market to see if the team could bring back a bounty of pitching, but nothing was realized so he’ll once again anchor the lineup. It could be tough to repeat last years performance, but Seattle will need something close if they ever want to contend, as well as some production from other places as well.
4. 1B –
– With prodigious power, Seattle is hoping Ortiz can be their answer to B.C. Parent. They’ll need him to make the leap in order to contend. Last years 39 HR’s and 107 RBI’s, to go along with his .260/.343/.503 were certainly nice for a 1st full season, but they’ll need more from him if he is to be compared with Parent.
5. C –
– A free agent signee, he was brought in for one reason – to get on base. While certainly won’t be confused with any Gold Glovers, he is about equal to what the ‘Dogs had last year behind the dish, but should be a HUGE improvement over last years offensive #’s from a Seattle catcher. He was signed for 2 years for $2.1M per, and if he continues to get on base close to his career OBP of .394 then it will have been worth it.
6. LF –
– This youngster has been a slow starter in each of his big league seasons. They will try to get him more AB’s in Spring Training to get him into mid season form faster. He hovered just above the Mendoza line last year till almost the All Star break. Due to injuries they kept running him out there and he flashed enough potential to hand him the job to lose this year. A big step forward is needed from Grey.
7. CF –
– Surprisingly, his career line has trended downward, and last year was a complete loss. It may be a case of too much pressure placed upon him, but the Salty Dogs definitely need him to improve his bat. His defense still remains solid so he does provide value there. Baek will be hitting 7th most of the year in an attempt to keep the pressure off.
8. SS –
– Was brought to Seattle a few seasons back for 1 reason – DEFENSE. Last year he committed the most errors of his ML career (17). Lucky for him they don’t have many other options defensively for SS and they expect a return to normal.