That’s right.  My man Nelson Cruz (pictured) finally
got the call.  If you don’t get what
I am talking about, then read the very last paragraph of this
entry.  Cruz has been the best hitter in
the minors above rookie ball.  Yes, I
admit Roberto
and Jaff
have been better in their limited time. 

nelson cruz.jpg

Cruz was on fire before his injury (which only kept him out for a
week), and after he came back.  I know
I’ve said it before, but Cruz’s
are SICK.  1.123 OPS?  Why should I even be surprised he’s having
such a great season?  He did the exact
same thing with Oklahoma last year! 


But everything isn’t as
great as it appears.  Will Nelson
actually start?  The answer, at least so
far, is no.  The worst part is the
Rangers have a very good argument of why Cruz is not as good as Marlon Byrd or Brandon Boggs.  Boggs is playing great, taking a lot of
walks and hitting for occasional power, although the lack of pop is seriously
noticeable compared to Cruz’s. 

Boggs and Byrd are playing
very well with a combined .386 OBP and 3 home runs within the past ten

brandon boggs.jpg

Boggs (left) has been playing
continually better since getting called up in late April.  He has a .382 OBP with two homers the past
ten games.  But here’s something
interesting.  Look at Brandon
Boggs’ numbers
at AAA.  Then compare
those stats to Nelson
Cruz’s stats
at AAA.  If Boggs can
be a serviceable starting player in the majors, consider how great Cruz can
be.  Ever since Cruz started putting up
these numbers, he’s never gotten called back up, before now.  Remember, the numbers Cruz put up last year
at AAA, were after his time with Texas.


Now it’s time to talk
Marlon Byrd.  Byrd enjoyed a breakout
season last year after Kenny Lofton left, but struggled early this season.  Byrd had a .268 OBP on June 1st
with only one home run.  But after
slowly getting better in June, Byrd went on a tear in late July and early

marlon byrd.jpg

Obviously, Byrd couldn’t keep
it up, but still is playing well with a .390 OBP and six RBI in his last ten
games.  I really don’t think Byrd is a
starting player on a championship team.


I don’t mean to say I
think the Rangers could be a championship team, but just commenting on the type of
a player Byrd is.  I believe that’s a
good way of evaluating a player.  Think
about it this way: if a clone of that player played at every position, could
that team’s offense be good enough win the World Series?  Don’t take it literally.  Juan Uribe is a below average starting
player, yet he was the shortstop for the 2005 Chi Sox.  But, evaluation wise, it’s a good question
to ask yourself when determining how good a player is. 


For me, out of all the
players, the most interesting to watch the rest of the season will be Nelson
Cruz.  This call up could make or break
his entire career.  If he fails, he could
be considered one of the greatest Four-A players of all time.


How about a crazy
prediction?  Actually, not really
crazy.  This is my true prediction
for Nelson Cruz the rest of the year:


OBP     HR            RBI            SB            SLG            OPS

.348     5                9                1            .527            .875


Let’s see how close I will


  1. districtboy

    Well, originally I planned to do occasional entries on my collection, but when I started writing up an entry it just got sort of boring and wasn’t as much fun as I thought it would be. Besides, there are enough blogs out there about collecting, like yours, Amac’s, John’s, and Zack’s. I’ll stick to the type of content I’ve been writing, which is complete randomness.

  2. gregb123

    Good post. But lay off my man Marlon Byrd. I’ve had high regards for him ever since he threw me a ball in Baltimore this July.

  3. districtboy

    I love Austin Kearns. He’s thrown me six balls. Three of them have been caught while I was in the upper deck at RFK. And that was a LONG way up.

    But I still think he’s an overrated player who desperately needs to be traded this off season for prospects.

    Byrd was pretty nice to fans in his time with the Nats, but I don’t have any vivid memories. Byrd has found his groove in Texas, and it’s hard to say that he shouldn’t be starting every day. But since Nelson Cruz has such an upside, and Texas won’t be making the playoffs, I think it would be smart to give Nelson a chance. Just curious, who has thrown you the most balls?

  4. gregb123

    Fair enough. Good point. But I still like Marlon Byrd.

    Off the top of my head, Billy Wagner and Guillermo Mota have each thrown me six balls. And Guy Conti (the Mets bullpen coach) has been directly responsible for six of my balls as well, although two of those were tossed to me by other people under his instruction. I would have higher numbers from individual players if my home ballpark hadn’t been built by retarted baby monkeys.

  5. xmister8@gmail.com

    Right on, Nelson Cruz made a nice addition to my fantasy lineup. i was both surprised and annoyed that milton bradley kept nursing his wrist instead of trying to qualify for batting title.

  6. districtboy

    Well, with Milton likely signing elsewhere, Nelson could find himself in the DH spot next year. He definitely earned it with the numbers he put up. I WAY underestimated him with my prediction. Thanks for reading and commenting.

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