It's silly season for baseball. Without any games of note, the idle mind turns to rosterbation. As the offseason progresses, it becomes more complex and convoluted. It moves from "sign six players for a combined $100B," to a four-way deal that uses obscure passages from the collective bargaining agreement to get Hanley Ramirez for Dan Runzler and 19th-century promissory notes from the Bank of New Amsterdam.
I'm as guilty as anyone. I'm just itching to write my "sign Nick Johnson" post. Today, though, should be reserved for wacky roster ideas. Try Ryan Garko at catcher. Move Sergio Romo to the rotation. Mike McBryde to the mound. Buster Posey to shortstop! Stuff like that. Is there anything you've been ruminating on for a while -- maybe last year you wondered if Eugenio Velez could be a left fielder, and, by gum, you wish you had spoken up -- but you've been too scared to acknowledge publicly?
This comes up because I'm convinced that Nate Schierholtz can become a major league center fielder. Heck, he can become a very good one. His UZR was off the charts in a small sample this season in right field, and he certainly passes the eyeball test. He's fast, has a very good arm, and seems to take good routes to the ball. Well, I think he takes good routes in right field; it might be a different story when the level of competition is being set by guys like Matt Kemp and Andrew McCutchen.
But if Schierholtz can be an average defender in center, he doesn't have to de-Giants his bat in order to succeed. If he plateaus at .290/.330/.440 -- not too wild-eyed of a projection -- he'd still be a viable starter. Not that any non-Rowand will start for the Giants in center until 2013, but it'd be a way to make Schierholtz a pretty dandy fourth outfielder. If he's limited to a corner spot, he's not nearly as impressive of a young player.
You can comment on the Schierholtz-to-center idea, throw in your own Thomas Neal-to-third idea, or you can just talk about what vegetables you find delicious or disgusting, which is probably why you even checked in with the site today.
And I think I've figured out a way to get Ian Kinsler for Merkin Valdez and Scott Barnes. I'll wait until right before the Winter Meetings to post it so the Giants' Brass keeps it fresh in their minds.