Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Switching Clubs is no Picnic

With more and more clubs bringing in free agents, it is being borne in on various players that switching clubs is no picnic. Sometimes it can mean migrating to a different Major League division. Jayson Werth joins the Nationals in Washington. The team he played for earlier boasted a number of left handed batsmen which brought him a late innings advantage. However, in Washington he will be just one of many right handed batsmen. And he will need to play against his former teammates.

Unconfirmed reports announced that a Major League contract had been signed between Orlando Cabrera and the Cleveland Indians. If that is true, the 36 year old Cabrera would bring a depth of experience to a side which cannot really boast of stability or experience. This veteran campaigner can certainly change the name of the game for he is known to be one of the best defenders at short point. He has played for clubs like the Angels, Reds, White Sox, Expos and Twins. In fact he claimed a gold Glove award in 2001 when he was playing for Expos. His short stint with Angels gained him his other Gold Glove award.

Joining the Indians will bring its own challenges as their infield is deemed to be rather shaky. As of now the training schedule has February 17 as the day when catchers and pitchers report for official workouts for Spring Training. While other players are supposed to report the next day, the entire team will get their first chance to practice together on February 20th. There are some other long term changes on the cards for the Indians. Experts have been expecting them to utilize Lonnie Chisenhall as third base while the second base can be manned by Jason Kipnis.

On the other hand, Victor Martinez who became an All-Star thrice while he was with the Indians now joins the Tigers. Batting fifth instead of his accustomed third place would certainly improve his RBI chances. How well his offense is going to be impacted when the strain of catching gets reduced significantly remains to be seen. He comes to Comerica with an impeccable record of scoring at least 32 two base hits in every one of the six seasons he has played. Whether or not he will be able to maintain his nearly injury free record as well his doubles record only time will tell.

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