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Wednesday, November 19, 2003

Around the Hot Stove

Here is some good analysis of the Cubs offseason. Great comments on Choi and Bellhorn. Dusty gave up on both way too early and was fortunate that Hendry stepped up and got Lofton and Ramirez. Probable lineup for 2004?

1B - Choi, Simon as backup and pinch hitter
2B - Grudz (free agent but likely resign although Castillo would be interesting)
SS - Gonzales (unfortunately but still has a contract)
3B - Ramirez (should try and lock him up for a couple years)
RF - Sosa (just exercised his option)
CF - Patterson (injury free and with some patience, who knows?)
LF - Alou (1 year left on contract)
C - Miller (should look hard at Rodriguez or someone else)

SP - Prior, Wood, Clement (Cubs picked up option), Zambrano, Need a fifth starter
RP - Borowski, Remlinger, Farnsworth, Cruz

Clearly catcher is the position to upgrade as well as shortstop if you could get somebody to take Gonzales.

The Royals are another story. Here's what looks probable thus far:

1B - Harvey (not great but could improve)
2B - Relaford (better as a utility man but the best the Royals have for now considering Matos, Ordaz, and Abernathy)
SS - Berroa (solid, solid)
3B - Randa (Royals will try and resign)
RF - Guiel (impressive season in 2003, could get better in 2004)
CF - Beltran (for one more year anyway)
LF - DeJesus (with Ibanez in Seattle, this makes sense. Dee Brown might slip in here once more but I hope not)
C - Nobody (Mayne and DeFelice are free agents though I'd hate to see them sign either one)
DH - Sweeney (Royals over .500, he stays)

SP - Hernandez, Asencio, May, Snyder, Anderson (hopefully the Royals can sign him)
RP - Affeldt (should be full time closer), MacDougal, Leskanic, Carrasco

Everyone else is expendable.

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