Stolen Base Sleepers 2007: Michael Bourn & Shane Victorino

Stolen Base Sleepers 2007: Michael Bourn & Shane Victorino

 

 

Sometimes a player will work on a little better contact or a better power swing. Pitcher’s fool around with different pitches, try out different motions, etc. You know what they say, “What happens in spring training stays in spring training.” Ugh, any-who, with all of this said, there is one thing that doesn’t take a break or is tinkered with during spring training, and that’s speed. Sure, a player can change his lead-off and base stealing pattern, but the main factor of these events still goes back to speed.

 

 

Here’s a few of the expected names in the top 20 in spring training Stolen Bases:

Reyes, Taveras, Crawford, Bloomquist, Harris, A. Sanchez, Barfield, Figgins, Gathright, Owens, Choo, Damon

 

But two players stick out. The first would have to be Michael Bourn of the Phillies. Bourn is quietly having a great spring, hitting .389/.395/.556 with a tied league leading 14 runs, and is 5 for 5 in stolen base attempts. Playing time will be hard to come by for Michael but a trade (or injury) to Aaron Rowand could move Bourn into a full-time job by the mid point of the season.

 

The other big surprise of the spring SB leaders is another Phillie, Shane Victorino. Dubbed the “Flyin’ Hawaiian”, Victorino only attempted 7 steals in over 450 plate attempts in 2006. The word on the street is that Phillies strength and conditioning coaches have been working with Shane in the off-season, and that the green light has been given to Victorino this spring (and presumably during the regular season). Last season he hit a respectable .287/.346/.414. So don’t be surprised when you look at the final MLB stolen base stats for 2007 and see Shane with 25+ steals.

 

Shane Victorino 2007 Sleeper

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has written for mopupduty.com since 2006. Follow Matthias on Twitter, Facebook and Google +