Sunday, September 27, 2009

Indians Eye Michael Brantley for 2010 Outfield

Various reports coming out of Cleveland see rookie Michael Brantley surpassing 2005 first round pick Trevor Crowe for the starting spot in the Indians 2010 center field.

The problem with Crowe is not so much that he has underperformed -- which he has -- but that Brantley has excelled, hitting nearly .340 in a limited trial, with a .576 onbase percentage against lefties, even though Brantley bats left handed.

Brantley also has shown considerable potential defensively, though his performance has been marred by a few youthful gaffs.

Brantley's door opened a crack when Victor Martinez was traded to the Red Sox, and Ryan Garko to the Giants, effectively halting the experimentation with rookie Matt LaPorta in left field. LaPorta is all but assured of claiming the starting first baseman's job.