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Short-Term May Mean a Couple Months

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We've heard a lot about Frank Wren wanting to acquire a short-term veteran option to replace Andruw Jones so that in a year or two, there isn't a big contract blocking top prospect Jordan Schafer. Some new info from Jayson Stark suggests that short-term may in fact mean a couple of months to the Braves front office.
Clubs talking to the Red Sox about Coco Crisp report that the Sox have put all those discussions on hold until the Santana trade talks have played themselves out. So those clubs are now making alternative plans. The Rangers, for instance, are believed to have kicked the tires on a group that includes Rocco Baldelli, Jim Edmonds and Juan Pierre. But the Braves, who had also been interested, are now so charged up about center-field prospect Jordan Schafer's chances of making it to the big leagues by midyear, they may try to get by for a couple of months with a lesser name -- a Dave Roberts type or recently acquired ex-Astros prospect Josh Anderson.
If the Braves do believe that Schafer could be up by the All-Star break, then this could really change the center field situation heading into next season. Schafer impressed Bobby Cox during the manager's trip to the AFL and seems to be edging closer and closer towards a starting job in the major leagues. I think Schafer would struggle a bit early on, especially with strikeouts, while he is adjusting. However, if the young center fielder provides an adequate amount of offense along with great defense, he may be our best option. Of course the other part of this is the suggestion that Dave Roberts could fit well as that short stop-gap. Roberts provides a little better on base skills than Josh Anderson but they are very similar players capable of producing at probably about the same level. Now I'm all for adding a real veteran presence to an outfield that is lacking that with Schafer possibly making the jump to the majors after only a couple months above A-ball, but the money is where there is an issue. Roberts signed a 3-year deal worth $18 million before the 2007 season and is still owed $6.5 million per year over the last two years. That seems like quite a hefty price tag for quite a mediocre player. The bottom line is that unless the Giants pick up a considerable amount of the money owed, I really don't see anything like this happening. It doesn't make sense for Frank Wren to make a $13 million dollar commitment to a bench player that will start for a couple months.

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