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ZiPS: Designated Hitter

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    NEWSLETTERS

    ESPN's Dan Szymborski is a computer and stat guru, and we love getting a look at his projections. Here are his numbers for the 2014 Texas Rangers.

    Position: Designated hitter

    Player: Mitch Moreland

    Last year: .232 batting average, .299 on-base percentage, .437 slugging percentage, 23 home runs, 60 RBIs, 518 plate appearances

    2014 projections: .256/.316/.449, 20 home runs, 63 RBIs, 504 plate appearances

    Moreland could've used a big spring to vault him into the regular season in a good groove at the plate, but he's missed the past week of action and will most likely be put on the 15-day DL on Friday, meaning he'd miss the first four games of the regular season. Moreland is going to be the club's primary DH because he'll play against right-handed starters — generally three out of every five days, on average.

    The Rangers would love nothing more than for Moreland to hit left-handed pitchers and force them to give him full-time at-bats, but that's not likely at this point in his career as a 28-year-old veteran. However, he does have better than average power against righties and will have plenty of opportunities to flash it as long as he can get healthy soon. Otherwise, be on the lookout for Michael Choice.