The outfield will be governed by four bodies to start with a fifth hanging around the infield.
The outfield depth is the one spot that could get interesting as 2016 unfolds. In choosing to stick with Randal Grichuk and Stephen Piscotty with a fine nod to Tommy Pham, General Manager John Mozeliak is riding overall unproven talent to carry the bulk of production.
He said no to the Yoenis Cespedes dish and Justin Upton platter special, and that’s fine as long as it works. Memphis isn’t bare, especially with the likes of speed demon Charlie Tilson and Anthony Garcia awaiting a call. There isn’t a smoking gun that will be called up to be the savior like the late Oscar Taveras, Grichuk or Piscotty in the past two seasons. So here is how it plays out.
Left field belongs to Matt Holliday. The Hulk of Stillwater, Oklahoma is going to start in left field, bringing his newfound love for beards, batting practice shows, unreal physical condition and chip on his shoulder along for the ride. Holliday hears the rumors about his future after this season carrying some unsure weight.
He is coming off a season where he played the least amount of games since his first year in the bigs. His power is falling off and he is getting older. Will he blow the cover off the door? I think he will provide a 2014 type impact, which is fine. Back to consistent Holliday is just fine. He will not play first base. There’s four bodies ahead of him.
Center Field will be given to Randal Grichuk on opening day, if he makes it through camp without his legs busting or his elbow exploding. Grichuk has 30 HR type power and an all around athleticism that is rare in the game today and his upside puts him ahead of Pham, who will backing up all three outfield positions. With improved health and new contacts, Pham will challenge for more time and be a backup plan for Grichuk or Holliday.
Right Field is all Piscotty. The kid turned heads in 2015 with a half season to remember and has the right combo at the plate(average and power with stingy gap strength) to hold up the production of a right fielder.
Starters-Holliday, Grichuk, and Piscotty
Backups-Pham and Moss
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