Dan Szymborski’s ZiPS projections are a good measure of what to expect from players in the upcoming baseball season. We'll take a look at the Rangers' projections on a position-by-position basis. Szymborski can be found on Twitter at @DSzymborski.
Today we'll look at the projections for the Rangers at center field, where it looks to be a platoon between Craig Gentry and Leonys Martin.
Gentry: .260 batting average, .321 on-base percentage, .349 slugging percentage, 12 doubles, 3 triples, 3 home runs, 29 RBIs, 17 stolen bases.
Gentry was just short of great last year in the middle of the season before being replaced by an even hotter player in David Murphy and basically being relegated to the bench for much of the latter part of the season. When he did see time down the stretch he wasn't good because his rhythm was broken. Gentry has shown throughout his career that he needs consistent at-bats to be good, and this could be his year to get them as he will probably start against left-handed pitching.
Martin: .270 batting average, .326 on-base percentage, .415 slugging percentage, 21 doubles, 3 triples, 8 home runs, 42 RBIs, 15 stolen bases.
It appears as if the Cuban prospect will finally get his time to prove he's a big-leaguer, as he'll likely get the starts in center against right-handed starters. There's never been much doubt of Martin's offense. It's his play in center that needs some work with alleviating bad angles from time to time. Gentry has the edge defensively while Martin probably has the edge at the plate.