Offseason additions give Blue Jays depth, flexibility

By Jordan Bastian / MLB.com

多倫多在季後一連串的動作使得名單內許多選手都必須在新球季適應他們的新角色。
而最終的結果就是誰是主要的DH以及強化了板凳深度,也使得球隊的調度將更靈活。

經由交易獲得的三壘手Troy Glaus 和一壘手Lyle Overbay將取代Shea Hillenbrand和Eric Hinske在內野的位置,而Hillenbrand將會是DH的第一選擇--一個他上一季已經經歷過的角色。

"Hillenbrand上一季打DH打的非常出色,所以我看不出任何他在這一季無法擔任DH的原因"GM J.P. Ricciardi 如此說道

Hillenbrand在上一季先後守過一和三壘,當DH成為例行任務後並不代表他沒有機會上場守備了,事實上 ,當Troy Glaus 和Lyle Overbay不在先發打線時,Hillenbrand會是球隊的第一選擇。

"Troy Glaus 和Lyle Overbay都會有需要休息的時候,當Glaus休息時,Hillenbrand可以上場守三壘,當Overbay休息時,Shea可以上場守一壘" Ricciardi說"他的主要任務是擔任DH,但還是會有時間讓他上場守備,這就是我們有的優勢"。

上一季Hillenbrand的打擊率是0.291,82分打點外加生涯最佳的18支全壘打,他同時也是藍鳥隊唯一一名入選明星賽的球員。

而Hinske的狀況則讓藍鳥在板凳上有了更多的選擇,他將會移防到外野,一個自從2A之後他就沒有出現過的地方。

這個計畫是在春訓的時候讓左打的Hinske練習左外野守備,他對上右投手有0.283的打擊率,15支全壘打中有11支是面對右投時打出的,Ricciardi同時也希望Catalanotto也能在面對右投時上場,這意味著他必須移去守右外野

右打的外野手Reed Johnson和Alex Rios將分別是面對左投的左右外野手,他們2人的守備都相當優異,一但Wells需要休息時也都能肩負起中外野的防守大任

不論誰是左右外野的先發,板凳都相當的優異;如果是Hinske和Catalanotto先發;Reed Johnson和Alex Rios都有優異的速度並且能在比賽後半段上場守備;而如果相反,則藍鳥會有2名優秀的左打在休息區待命,其中Catalanotto在上一季的打擊率(0.301)和上壘率(0.367)都領先全隊。

"我認為今年的板凳深度是我們所擁有過最佳的"Ricciardi說道"我認為有很多是我們過去所不曾擁有的" 。

在近期簽下捕手Bengie Molina 後,將使得過去兩季的主力先發Gregg Zaun這名
左右開弓的打者被放置在板凳上。上一季,Zaun的保送次數不但創下生涯新高的
73次而且領先全隊,此外,他的全壘打(11), 打點 (61)和出賽場次 (133)也都是生涯新高。

而在內野中央防線的主要替補是John McDonald,他將同時擔任游擊手Russ Adams和二壘手Aaron Hill的替補。McDonald在去年七月被交易至底特律之前都是藍鳥隊的一員,他在十一月被以現金交換回來。

McDonald是以防守見長的選手,他上一季主要是以游擊手的身分在藍鳥和老虎共計出賽68場,打擊率0.277而沒有擊出全壘打,但他也守過二壘和三壘。

最糟糕的情況是 McDonald、 Adams和Hill之後藍鳥還必須尋找其他人選來負擔中間防線,在農場裡,Ryan Roberts上一季在2A New Hampshire 表現出色,而從響尾蛇獲得的Sergio Santos也是優先選擇名單。

看起來藍鳥在每個位置都有備胎,今年冬天繁忙的變動不僅強化了打線,也增加了板凳的深度。球季非常的漫長,如果多倫多想要衝進季後賽,它需要它的每一位成員都能做出最大的貢獻。

原文:

The moves the Blue Jays made this offseason caused ripples throughout the rest of roster, shifting a handful of position players into new roles.

The end result was a clear candidate to assume the primary designated hitter job and the strengthening of the bench as a whole, giving the team more options.

Adding third baseman Troy Glaus and first baseman Lyle Overbay via trades left Shea Hillenbrand and Eric Hinske out of regular work at the corner infield spots. Hillenbrand will be the first choice for DH -- a role he platooned in last season.

"[Hillenbrand] handled [serving as the DH] really well last year, so I don't see any reason why he won't handle it well again," Toronto general manager J.P. Ricciardi said.

Hillenbrand split time between first base and third last season, and becoming the regular DH doesn't mean he won't see any action in the field. In fact, Hillenbrand will probably be the team's first option when Overbay or Glaus aren't in the starting lineup.

"There's going to be days when Overbay needs a day off and [Hillenbrand] can play first. There's going to be days when Glaus needs a day off and he can play third," Ricciardi said. "He's primarily going to be our DH, but there will be enough times to get him in those other spots. It's just a luxury we have."

Last year, Hillenbrand hit .291 and tied a career high in home runs (18) to go along with 82 RBIs. He also was Toronto's lone representative at the All-Star Game.

Hinske's situation adds to the Jays' bench options. Hinske, who will attempt to move to the outfield, said that he hasn't played out of the infield since his days in Double-A.

The plan going into Spring Training is to try Hinkse, who bats from the left side, in left field and start him against right-handed pitchers. He hit .283 last season, with 11 of his 15 home runs coming against righties. Ricciardi also wants Frank Catalanotto in the order against right-handers, so that means Catalanotto would have to move to right field.

Right-handed outfielders Reed Johnson and Alex Rios would be in left and right field, respectively, against left-handed pitchers. Both are good enough defenders to play center field if Vernon Wells needs a break, too.

The bench is strong no matter who is starting at the corner spots. If Hinske and Catalanotto are starting, Toronto has good speed and defensive choices available in Johnson and Rios. If it's the other way around, the Jays have two good left-handed bats ready. One of those, Catalanotto, led the team in batting average (.301) and on-base percentage (.367) last season.

"I think it's the deepest [bench] we've had," Ricciardi said. "There's a lot of things we have that I don't think we've had here in the past."

The recent signing of catcher Bengie Molina pushes Gregg Zaun, the starting catcher for most of the past two seasons, into a reserve role, leaving him as a nice switch-hitting option off the bench. Last season, Zaun had a career-high 73 walks to lead Toronto, and he also set personal bests in homers (11), RBIs (61) and games played (133).

The reserve duties up the middle rest with John McDonald, who will serve as the backup to both shortstop Russ Adams and second baseman Aaron Hill. McDonald was with the Jays last year before being traded to Detroit in July. He was reacquired in November in exchange for cash considerations.

McDonald is known more for his defense than for his offense. He hit .277 with no homers and 16 RBIs in 68 games for the Jays and Tigers last season and spent most of his time at shortstop. McDonald also played some second and third base as well.

In a worse-case scenario in which Toronto would have to look beyond Adams, Hill or McDonald for help up the middle, Minor Leaguers Ryan Roberts, who had a good season with Double-A New Hampshire last year, and Sergio Santos, who was acquired from Arizona in the Glaus deal, likely would be the first two in-house options.

Toronto seems to have a backup plan in place at every position. The flurry of deals the Jays made this winter not only strengthened the starting nine, but also added some more flexibility to their bench. It's a long season, and Toronto will need all of its pieces to fit into the puzzle just right if it wants to make a run at the postseason.

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