By R.J. Anderson //
Biggest Surprise: Jim Edmonds
When the 40-year-old joined the Brewers’ camp in spring, few people
expected him to make the team. Even fewer expected him to play well,
yer that’s he did. Sure, .276/.342/.504 pales in comparison to his
career numbers (which are Hall of Fame-worthy, even if few people are
talking about him in that light). At age 40, after a year away from the
game, that’s an impressive feat. That he enjoyed the postseason ride
with the Cincinnati Reds is a nice touch as well.
Biggest Bust(s): Alcides Escobar and Carlos Gomez
Gomez’s best baseball-related skill remains his speed. That’s why it
has to be disappointing for the Brewers that he cannot get on base at
all, leaving his ability to cause havoc on the basepaths untapped.
Meanwhile, Escobar struggled in his first full season in the bigs.
These two are still young enough to turn it around in time to
contribute to a winning Brewers team, but for 2010 you have to label
2011 Keeper Alert: Lorenzo Cain
And the reason Gomez might never get another starting chance in
Milwaukee is Cain. The 24-year-old only got a little over 150 plate
appearances, but he hit .306/.348/.415 while showing solid defensive
chops. He’s probably the Brew Crew’s Opening Day center fielder in
2011 Regression Alert: Corey Hart
1) Hart’s BABIP was well above his career average (.324 instead of
.310) and 2) his home runs per flyball ratio was too (16.7% instead of
12.4%). Maybe Hart is just maturing as he heads into his statistical
prime seasons, but more likely, he’s not quite as good as he showed in
2010. A drop to 20-25 home runs is a more reasonable projection than a
repeat of 30.