Continuing a ranking of the Diamondbacks 8 starting position players, Chris Young finds himself checking in at #3. Here’s where we’ve been so far on the list:
#8 – 3B – Ryan Roberts
#7 – 2B – Aaron Hill
#6 – LF – Gerardo Parra
#5 – 1B – Paul Goldschmidt
#4 – SS -Stephen Drew
#3 – CF – Chris Young
Perhaps the most talented player on the Diamondbacks roster, centerfielder Chris Young is definitely the most frustrating. Unfortunately for
Young, with his power, speed and defensive prowess, comes significant drawbacks. Young hasn’t proven to be able to hit for average (.240 career average) and he strikes out a ton.
Young broke onto the scene in 2007 becoming one of just a handful of rookies to every hit 20 home runs and steal 20 bases but he’s had an up and down career ever since. He responded from an abysmal 2009 that saw him hit a mere .212 with only 15 home runs and 45 RBI, to become the D-Backs 2010 team MVP–raising his average to .257 with 27 home runs and 91 RBI. He leveled out in 2011 falling almost exactly in-between his two previous seasons–.236/20/71. Young’s inflated strikeout numbers (139 in 2011) have become more bearable as he’s show increased patience at the plate the last couple of seasons–walking a career high 80 times in 2011. At this point in his career, strikeouts appear to be something that D-Back fans will simply have to accept with Young. If the D-Backs eventually sour on Young and opt to play Gerardo Parra in centerfield, Young’s age and intangibles make him a highly valuable asset.
The bottom line on Chris Young is that he is a legitimate four tool player who simply hasn’t discovered how to hit for average yet in his career. He’s proven he can dominate at the major league level, but also proven he can disappear for extended periods. Physically, Young is immensely talented and if he can continue to work on his plate discipline he can return to his All-Star form of 2010.
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