Thursday, August 25, 2011

Season 15 Previews: New Orleans Voodoo

Hard to believe this once-proud franchise lost 112 games last season. Hopefully last season's dumpster fire of a campaign is rock bottom (because any further would be below the wins minimum). Should New Orleans just hope to avoid elimination, or is there some hope for... anything?

New Orleans Voodoo

Last season: 50-112 (last in NL South, missed playoffs [obviously])
Offense: Last in NL
Pitching: Last in NL

Key additions: SS Doc Bowen, (FA-Syracuse)
Key losses: C Rodney Rando (trade-Oakland), 1B Brian Christiansen (FA), P Orber Marin (FA)

Analysis: Well, they can't be any worse, but I'm not sure they'll be much better, either. They backed the Brinks truck up at the Bowen residence to grab one of the best free-agents available, but he can't do it alone. Last season's leader in homers and RBI, the aforementioned Christiansen, had an OBP under .300 and was not re-signed. LF Clayton Long had a solid rookie season, but RF Erick Daniels underachieved and New Orleans legend Ray Cepicky just doesn't have it anymore (he's also a free-agent). The team felt comfortable dealing Rando due to highly touted prospect C Livan Guillen ready to step into the starting lineup.

I don't see where the innings are going to come from. Their best two starters, Eric Edwards and Mateo Guerrero, would be in the back of most rotations. Is Rich Gibson or Jackie Page part of the solution? No one knows. They have two dynamite arms in the pen in closer Miguel Estalella and rookie Tripp Gosling, but if they don't inherit games that are close, they won't be of much use.

Outlook: I really hope they're not flirting with the win minimum this season. But I don't think New Orleans fans can expect respectability.

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