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How Many Plate Appearances for Lorenzo Cain in 2011?

A .370 BABIP that led to just a .348 OBP sounds like a Dayton Moore player.(Photo by Rob Tringali/Getty Images)
A .370 BABIP that led to just a .348 OBP sounds like a Dayton Moore player.(Photo by Rob Tringali/Getty Images)
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I started out this morning ready to write a "what can we expect from Lorenzo Cain in 2011?" post. However, that topic is actually pretty played out. In short, Cain hit .306/.348/.415 last season, thanks, as I'm obligated to point out, to a .370 BABIP. As much as citing BABIP is a cliche, it's just as much a cliche for people to say, "but this guy is different." It's not really a fascinating argument. In 2558 career minor league PAs, Cain has hit .291/.366/.416. Of course, the tools guy love him, in spite of these numbers. Again, not a terribly thrilling argument. Probably one that's worth having, but there's no point in drawing it out myself.

To me, the more interesting immediate question is how much Cain is going to play in 2011. Seemingly, half the Royal roster is a decent defensive CF who can't quite hit. Oh, and Melky Cabrera. Our guys who are sorta around:

  • Cain
  • Melky Cabrera
  • Jarrod Dyson
  • Gregor Blanco
  • Mitch Maier

You could also maybe add Derrick Robinson to that list if you wanted. Shortly after the Cabrera signing and the Greinke trade, I attempted to make sense of the situation. Although this isn't really the purpose of this post, it's somewhat amazing how many redundant players the Royals have acquired at CF. I know I'm just an idiot who doesn't have the gnostic eyeballs that scouts possess, but I don't really see what the difference between Cain and Gregor Blanco is. But whatever, he was part of a 4 quarters for a dollar trade, so who knows what the point was. I'm sure the Royals believe you can post a high batting average by strong morals and squeezing the bat really hard.

Although I'm not really a huge Cain fan, I'd much rather see him out there than Melky Cabrera. The Royals however supposedly promised Cabrera the starting CF job, because, well, why the hell not? Dyson was in the equation before the Cain trade, and Blanco and Maier seem to be after-thoughts, though in true Royals fashion, would be decent bets to be the best pure options in 2011.

But rounding back to Cain. How many PAs do you see him getting in 2011? The Royals should play Cain, who will be 25 in 2011, but it isn't unreasonable to believe he might also need some more AAA seasoning. I'm trying to be more positive (or objective) towards how this team makes decisions, but quite simply, roster management has not been a strength of the Moore regime. Playing young players hasn't been one either. This is where the supposedly harmless signings of Melky and Francoeur actually get in the way. Because the Royals always play those guys. Anyway, this is one of the worst written posts ever, and it needs to end. Let's talk Cain playing time...