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Emerging Backstop Debate

By Mike Silva ~ March 8th, 2009. Filed under: Mike Silva.

Pudge Rodriguez had four hits Saturday night in the WBC. You could bet his agent was on the phone with Omar Minaya sometime around the 7th inning. Is Pudge necessary? It depends on if you believe Ramon Castro is healthy and ready to contribute for a full season.

With Brian Schneider making four million and Castro guaranteed another two it’s going to take a trade to bring Pudge in the fold. The real debate isn’t on the offensive side, but if Rodriguez will bring value in the clubhouse and with the pitching staff.

If Castro and Schneider are healthy I anticipate a combined 15 homers, 70 RBI, and about a .250 average. With Jerry Manuel indicating that he wants a full time catcher, I anticipate those numbers decreasing because of Schneider’s suspect bat being the favorite for playing time.

So far this spring it’s a moot point. Castro is healthy and hitting .400. Although Schneider hasn’t fared well with the stick, some believe he will show his defensive value now that he is adjusted to New York. Pudge is tempting, but it looks like there is no room at the inn.

The best scenario for Rodriguez is a return to Florida. He has a history in Miami and can provide much needed leadership to a young Marlins staff.

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Mike Silva has hosted sports shows on 107.1 FM Champions ESPN Radio Long Island ,1240 AM WGBB , Blog Talk Radio and live from Mickey Mantle’s Restaurant. He’s also built and maintained two popular social media hubs: New York Baseball Digest and Sports Media Watchdog. Mike has broken national and local stories, as well as been mentioned on the YES Network, SNY.tv, WFAN, Sports Illustrated, ESPN, NY Daily News, New York Magazine, Journal News and the NY Post. Contact Mike professionally at mikesilvamedia.com

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