Sunday, March 7, 2010

Center of Attention

Julio Borbon is expected to be the Texas Rangers opening day center fielder. He has the speed to play the position. The problem is that he doesn't have the arm. The hope is that his speed will turn doubles into outs and triples into singles. Plays at the plate on singles to center may not happen very often though. One report jokingly said David Ortiz could score from second on single to center. That leads me to believe the arm strength is an issue. Hopefully, Julio's speed can make up for it, both in center and on the base paths.
Technically, Julio isn't a rookie this season because he had 28 at bats more than allowed last year. In 46 games, Julio had 157 at bats. He hit for a .312 average and stole 19 bases, getting caught 4 times. He only had three starts in center field so how he does there remains to be seen.
Borbon will be the Rangers 14th different opening day center fielder in the 17 seasons since they opened the Ballpark in Arlington. He follows such great Rangers as:
1994 David Hulse
1995 Otis Nixon
1996 Darryl Hamilton
1997 Damon Buford
1998-99 Tom Goodwin
2000 Ruben Mateo
2001 Bo Porter (who?)
2002 Carl Everett
2003 Doug Glanville
2004 Laynce Nix
2005 Gary Matthews Jr.
2006 Laynce Nix
2007 Kenny Lofton
2008-09 Josh Hamilton*
Josh Hamilton is looking to move out of center to save some where and tear on the body. Here's hoping Julio's speed can make up for that arm.
*Thanks to Evan Grant and the Dallas Morning News for compiling the list.


  1. Nice! I got his 2009 red hot rookie redeemed. I had never heard of him at the time. Very cool to see he is going to start on an exciting team.

  2. He looks like a prospect, I wonder what he is going to do. Nice write up about Texas center fielders

  3. It's gonna be a good year in Texas!