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ZiPS: Third Base

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Getty Images/NBC 5 News
    Adrian Beltre, 2014 Texas Rangers

    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: Third base

    Player: Adrian Beltre

    Last year: .315 batting average, .371 on-base percentage, .509 slugging percentage, 30 home runs, 92 RBIs, 690 plate appearances

    2014 projections: .297/.341/.499, 27 home runs, 87 RBIs, 598 plate appearances

    In his three seasons in Texas, Adrian Beltre has found a way to club at least 30 home runs, something he had only done once before in his big-league career when he hit 48 in 2004 with the Los Angeles Dodgers. He's 35 this year, so he's definitely not getting younger, but he should be in line for another big year this season, especially with Shin-Soo Choo, Elvis Andrus and Prince Fielder hitting in front of him.

    Yet, the computers don't have Beltre reaching the home run benchmark in 2014, and also have him with a mysteriously low number of RBIs, as well as 100 fewer plate appearances than last season, which amounts to him missing about a month. At his age, and with his injury history that he's usually been able to play through, you'd have to imagine a trip to the DL wouldn't be anything too far-fetched.

    Obviously, you hope that doesn't happen. But if it does, the Rangers will have to find a way to replace the rock of their lineup over the past couple of seasons.