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Dusty Baker Picks Ronny Cedeno as Shortstop
by Jason Vernon
Chicago Cub manager Dusty Baker typically will pick a
veteran player over a youngster when he breaks camp and goes north. In spring
training this year he had the incumbent at shortstop, Neifi Perez, going up
against the rookie Ronny Cedeno. The 32 year old Perez has been a positively
anemic hitter throughout his career. He's gotten opportunity after opportunity
because of a couple of solid Coors Field inflated offensive seasons at the
beginning of his career. Enter Cedeno who comes with a minor league reputation
of a good batting eye and some potential pop in his bat - two things that Perez
does not have. Baker broke with his convention and decided on Cedeno to be his
starting shortstop for 2006 and in four games the rookie is hitting
.429/.429/.786. Kudos to Baker for doing something that was probably quite
uncomfortable for him to do.
Two Padre Regulars
Two Padre regulars
have gotten off to good starts this year. Adrian Gonzalez, the highly-touted
first baseman, is one of them. Now that he has a chance to play everyday for a
team he's trying to prove his worth as a premium offensive player. Through four
games he's off and running with a .375/.375/.688 line. The other regular is
right fielder Brian Giles who already has six walks this year. With the rest of
the lineup so horrendous why pitch to Giles?
R.A. Dickey's American League record tying performance of six home
runs allowed has earned him a trip to the minors. There he'll work on the
knuckleball that comfortably dipped into the strike zone six times and was
belted out of the Ballpark at Arlington six times a few days ago. Equally
atrocious journeyman Rick Bauer will be called up to replace Dickey.
When you're Tampa Bay the only day of the week that you feel like you
have a good shot to win is when Scott Kazmir takes the mound for you. Today
Kazmir goes up against Toronto's best, Roy Halladay. Kazmir's opening day start
in Baltimore was not good while Halladay's against the Twins was a
Check out additional Jason Vernon notes.
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