Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Notes on Khalil Greene, Aubrey Huff & Ryan Church

Several more free agent moves have taken place in MLB over the past several days.

Infielder Khalil Greene signs a 1-year contract with the Texas Rangers for $750,000

Khalil Greene is a prime example of how the game can bite you.

Greene was the San Diego Padres top draft pick in 2002 and less than two years later he was the Padres starting shortstop. In 2004, Greene finished runner up as NL Rookie of the Year to Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Jason Bay. In 2007, he hit a career high 27 home runs and 97 RBI with a decent .254 batting average.

However, Greene's offensive production declined significantly in 2008 hitting only .213 with 10 home runs and 35 RBI. He would be traded to the Cardinals last off season where he continued to struggle hitting only .200 with 6 home runs and 24 RBI. Greene was diagnosed with social anxiety disorder and missed the rest of the season.

Greene is expected to be a back up infielder for the Rangers. But if Michael Young, Elvis Andrus or Ian Kinsler get hurt in 2010 it's possible that Greene could have a big contribution to make. But that's a very big if.

First baseman/third baseman Aubrey Huff signs 1-year contract with San Francisco Giants worth $3 million

The Giants got another bat but the question is will the Giants get the Huff of 2008 or the Huff of 2009. In '08 season, Huff hit .304 with 32 home runs and 108 RBI with the Baltimore Orioles. Huff split the 2009 season between the Orioles and the Detroit Tigers hitting .241 with 15 home runs and 85 RBI.

Huff is capable of hitting 30 plus home runs but hasn't been able to it consistently. He might give some protection to Pablo Sandoval in the middle of the order but the Giants need a bonafide bopper. Look for Huff to play both third base and first base in 2010.

Outfielder Ryan Church signs 1-year contract with the Pittburgh Pirates worth $1,5 million.

Does Church have a prayer in Pittsburgh? Church split the 2009 season with the New York Mets and the Atlanta Braves. He hit .273 with 4 home runs and 40 RBI last season.

If nothing else Church will get a chance to play everyday. It's interesting that the Pirates have gone after veterans like himself, Bobby Crosby and Akinori Iwamura. Of course, the Bucs could end up unloading all of them by June should the team play in its usual form.

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