Angel In The Outfield
First of all, the question I raised in Wednesday’s comic was rhetorical. But thanks to Bartolo Colon and Lance Armstrong for providing an answer.
Angel Pagan presents an unusual problem.
Pagan’s had some bad streaks this season. He was 3-for-27 to start the season. After getting his average to .321 on June 10th, he kinda sucked for a long period. Not hitless, just not getting a lot of hits, disappearing for a bunch of games, but having a multi-hit game here or there. By August 2nd, after that horrible week at home against the Dodgers and Mets, his average was down nearly 50 points to .272.
But the last week has shown what he can be, and how good it is to have a leadoff man who leads off with hits. Working the count is good, but hits are better, I daresay. He scored in each game before the Dodgers even came up to bat. Now, it helps that #2 hitter Marco Scutaro got white hot as well, but Pagan was doing his job.
Even before the season played out, it was easy to think of the streaky, temperamental Pagan as an easy one-and-done Giant. Melky Cabrera was clearly the better player, and there’d be no money for him. Plus, Gary Brown was waiting in the wings of center field.
Now, Brown has had a tough year in AA (though he’s come back strong). And Melky is not coming back. And Pagan has even played against type, particularly defensively.
Do you bring back Pagan? He’ll undoubtedly be getting some multi-year offers this offseason. Brown is a superior center fielder, and while he lost a little luster in pitcher-friendly AA, he’s in the mix as soon as next year. Would you move Pagan to right (and Pence to left)? Can his bat play out as well there?
Well, like Clark says…wait until the offseason. Because it hurts to pro-and-con your way out of it, so you might as well procrastinate on it.