Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Your 2005 Rookie of the Year 

Will be Jeremy Reed. You can set it in stone right now. Not only is the kid one of the best prospects coming to the big leagues, but he is in a dream situation for a rookie. Look at how things are shaping up for Mr. Reed.

He should be the #2 hitter, with new slugger Adrian Beltre batting behind him. He is going to get good pitches to hit.

Batting ahead of him is Ichiro Suzuki, who will not only get on base at a .400 clip. Not only that, listen to these quotes that Grandpa Mariner overheard from manager Mike Hargrove.
"....with his speed and how often he is on base, there is no reason Ichiro can't break the stolen base record"

"...our 1,2 and 7,8,9 slots are all going to be good to excellent speed wise. By aggressively running more, we can keep the pressure on and help our power guys see better pitches"

"...there is a time and a place for bunting, but trying it too early in the game is a sign of no-confidence in your line up."
First of all, let me catch my breath as my heart is beating very fast. Ichiro break the stolen base record?!?! If Hargrove can unleash Ichiro to go for 100+ stolen base attempts, this may be the most fun season in Mariner history.

So, Ichiro is going to be on base a lot, and Hargrove has publicly proclaimed that the Mariners, and especially Ichiro, are going to be very aggresive on the basepaths. Ichiro is taking a big lead in a close game, and Adrian Beltre is sitting in the on deck circle licking his chops, what is the pitcher going to do? Once he gets his composure back, he is going to rear back and fire fastball after fastball at Jeremy Reed.

All Jeremy has to do is sit dead red on the fastball and begin feasting.

And if that isn't enough, look at the composure of the Mariners lineup. One lefthanded power hitter in Raul Ibanez. Then its a murderers row of right handers in Adrian Beltre, Richie Sexson, Bret Boone, and Bucky Jacobsen. Mix in the fact that Safeco favors left handed hitters, and you are likely to see opposing teams bringing out a stream of right handed pitchers.

As a lefthanded hitter, Reed gets the cozy confines of right field to try out his power swing, and he gets to feast on righty after righty.

A .300 average looks like a safe bet to me. Mix in a dozen or so home runs, and 80 RBIs, and you have your ROTY winner. Of course, all bets are off on Reed if King Felix starts the season in Seattle.

Enjoy 2005, Mariner fans! There is a good chance you will get a firsthand look at the 2005 Rookie of the Year.

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