Saturday, May 28, 2011

Russell Branyan - the newest Angel

Russell Branyan was a super prospect with the Cleveland Indians about a decade ago and while not quite fulfilling his potential - he has carved out a journeyman career in the Major Leagues as an all-or-nothing power hitter with some ability to take a walk.

I don't know if a 36-year old is the answer but given the lack of pop in the Angels' lineup - the Angels have given Branyan a chance to show that he isn't completely done as a big leaguer.

Branyan has been a castoff, a role player, a bat off the bench - he's a Matt Stairs type who probably doesn't need to be played every day and is ultimately expendable if he doesn't produce.

If Branyan does split time with Mark Trumbo at first base - it might go against the grain of letting Trumbo figure things out as a relatively young guy playing regularly.

Having Branyan around however may give the Angels an opportunity to put Trumbo in situations where he is going to have success - Trumbo does look like a guy who can hit 25-30 home runs a year, but maybe the expectations of him being the next great slugger may not be realistic when his on-base percentage is sitting at .290 as of May 28.

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