The Outfield: It was already the most jumbled part of the
Diamondbacks roster, and today, it gets even more confusing. So many
hitters, so few spots. So who is it? Which three (of the no less
than five) would be on the lineup card today?
Left Field: In Arizona there have been a few sure things, and
one of them is Luis Gonzalez. The face of the Diamondbacks, and even more
so since the departure of Randy Johnson, Gonzalez is hitting third in the order,
and playing his mediocre brand of left field, until he's retired or dead.
Rumors of potential trades are false, rumors of a potential benching are
ludicrous. Gonzo is there on opening day.
Center Field: As of yesterday, it was Shawn Green...by default.
As of yesterday Green was headed back out to center, a position he has neither
the speed nor the instincts for. As of yesterday the Arizona Diamondbacks
outfield was the worst in baseball.
But that was yesterday.
Today the Diamondbacks will announce that they traded Javier Vazquez for
Orlando Hernandez and a young minor leaguer by the name of Chris Young.
Chris Young. Hear it, listen to it, believe it. Regularly regarded
as an incredible talent, scouts get all mushy when they talk about the specifics
of his game.
"He can do absolutely everything," one scout said after watching Young in the
Arizona Fall League, "I had heard stories about him, but hadn't seen him until
he got here. He got the best jumps on the ball of any outfielder in the
league, might have been the fastest guy too."
Another was equally impressed, "This guy is a Major League talent. He's
just starting to show his power, and it's just going to keep coming, because he
generates all of it with his wrists. As he starts to realize that, he's
going to move less and less in the box, and that's going to make him so
Managers and coaches have raved about his work ethic, and in the AFL his
ability to make adjustments in the afternoon, and incorporate those adjustments
into that night's game, was incredible. He's everything you could want in
a center fielder, great defense, some power, incredible speed, and smart.
Welcome to Arizona Mr. Young, hope to see you here for quite a while.
Right Field: And then all hell broke loose. Pick your
Shawn Green is a veteran with a track record. He has power, will hit
.280, and plays an above average right field, with one of the most accurate (if
not incredibly strong) arms in baseball.
Chad Tracy is a budding star in this league, he's putting on weight to give
him even more power, and like Green, he's a left handed bat. He will
likely hit for a higher average than Green, and strike out less. His right
field defense isn't much, but has improved, though he will never have a right
Carlos Quentin has been one of the top three prospects in the Diamondbacks
organization since he signed with the organization. He has power, better
speed than either Green or Tracy, a cannon arm in right. He has massive
potential, and some believe he will eventually be a consistent .320/35/115 Major
Leaguer. He has calmly waited his turn, even playing center field for the
last two months of the 2005 season in Tucson, just to prove he could.
Many, including those of us here at FutureBacks.com, believe that when all three
of these players have retired, a stats comparison will have Quentin far
outdistancing either of the other two.
So if the season started today, the Diamondbacks starting right fielder would
Yes, yes it would. Green starts for one simple reason, because he's
making about $7 million more than the other two combined. Now, just so
everyone understands, Green is going to be dealt, probably to the Chicago Cubs,
in the next couple of days. But today, right now, Green is your starting
Want to get the details on the Top 50 Prospects and all the Individual
Scouting reports that will be coming up over the next several months? Sign up
today for FutureBacks.com's Total Access Pass, which will give you access to all
the information you crave. Only $79.95 for a one full year subscription of the
Total Access Pass, gives you access to all premium content on
FutureBacks.com, Scout™ Player and Roster Database (including the 'Hot News' at
the top of the site), Breaking News and Information. You also receive
Total Access to ALL Scout.com Websites, and Player Pages. That
includes all baseball, football, college football and college basketball sites
on the network. Don’t feel comfortable with a year subscription? FutureBacks
offers you monthly and three-month subscriptions for only $7.95 and $21.95
Want to write for FutureBacks.com? FutureBacks is now opening internships for
the upcoming 2006 season. If you live in or near one of the six minor
league affiliates, have a knowledge of, and love for, baseball, and a writing
background, send resumes and two sample pieces of writing (at least one of which
must be a journalistic piece about baseball) to
firstname.lastname@example.org, subject line
'INTERNSHIP APPLICATION'. Applicants must be able to attend a minimum of
three games per homestand and students looking for course credit must get
approval from their instructors. Schools or professors looking for class
projects may also contact FutureBacks. Please do not include pictures, ages, or
any biographical information beyond the standard resume.