They Chicago Cubs have a big hole at second as well as overall depth in their infield. Lucky them there is a player who just requested a trade that would fit perfectly on the field and in the locker room of Wrigley Field.
Michael Young has had enough of Texas.
The one time second baseman then short stop and most recently third baseman has been the ultimate team player during his time with the Rangers. He started his career playing second with Arod playing at short but when he was traded for current Cub, Alfonso Soriano, Young stepped up and volunteered to move from second to short so Soriano could stay at second. In 2009 he made the move from short to third to make room for rookie Elvis Andrus. The interesting thing is now most scouts feel he might be best suited to return to his familiar spot at second. Now Young is on the outside looking in as the Rangers still have Andrus at short, all-star Ian Kinsler at second and the newly signed Adrian Beltre taking over at third. So the Rangers actually don't have a starting spot for their all-time leader in hits.
First the negatives. Young isn't very young. He is 34 and will be turning 35 sometime during the playoffs next season. Secondly he isn't cheap. He still has three years left on the five year $80 million extension he signed back in 2007. His contract will expire at the end of the 2013 season. So he has roughly $48 million owed to him over the next three season at about 16 per.
Now onto the positives. Young is a great fielder, contact hitter and overall a good locker team guy from all reports. That last part has been something this club has been missing since Kerry Wood was allowed to sign elsewhere and Mark Derosa was traded.
Second base has really been a weak spot since Derosa was traded. For example five different players saw time there last year and three of those players are competing for that spot again this season. My feeling is none of them should be starting at second come opening day. Jeff Baker is much better suited to be a utility player while Blake Dewitt is probably nothing more then a backup and Darwin Barney probably needs to spend a year or two in Iowa.
Another positive is there is a good chance no matter where Young gets traded the Rangers will be forced to pay some of that contract which should only make him more attractive to GM Jim Hendry. Also since he has played 3 of the 4 infield spots he would be able to slide over to short or third if an injury occured allowing Baker or Dewitt to fill in at second.
If I am Jim Hendry and Tom Ricketts and I want to convince the Cubs faithful that they are going to try and compete this year they need to make a call to Nolan Ryan down in Arlington and see what it will take to get Michael Young to the Northside.