The Rangers announced their intention to move Michael Young to 3rd base for the 2009 season to make room for Elvis Andrus, their rookie prospect shortstop. This, of course, threw Michael Young into a tizzy like an Emotionally Stunted Sandinista. *stomps foot* I didn’t tell them to censor all the comics, just Doonesbury! How dare the Rangers move Young’s 12 home runs to 3rd base where he would become even more fantasy irrelevant? When Michael Young first heard of the Rangers plans, he was livid, saying, “What are my houseguests going to think now of my towels that are monogrammed with SS? That I’m a Nazi?” It’s surprising to see any reluctance from Young. He was only the same guy who played through a fractured finger last season in his quest for an inconsequential 200 hits. What’s really getting lost in all of this about Elvis Andrus replacing Young and Young moving to 3rd base? What’s going to happen to Travis Metcalf?! Okay, maybe that wasn’t lost. Maybe that was sidestepped and picked up with a plastic bag. So is Elvis Andrus a 2009 fantasy baseball sleeper?
There hasn’t been an Elvis so full of speed since The King passed away 30+ years ago. Andrus just needs the playing time. In Double A, Andrus stole 54 bases in 118 games. So, B-I-N-G-O, he’s fantasy relevant, because, as we know, SAGNOF. But will he get playing time? Well, Young’s agreed to drag his woobie over to third. Unfortunately, Andrus is not the strongest defensive shortstop, which normally would be ignored by us fantasy baseball ‘perts, but if he can’t field in spring training, he’s not making the club. Last year, he had 32 errors in 109 games. This is, how do you say? Not good. I think this might hold him back. I doubt Andrus makes the club out of spring training, so I would ignore him unless you’re in a very deep league or a keeper. But if things break differently in the spring and if the Texas daily newspapers are printing groaners like, “Elvis Has Entered the Building,” and “Rangers Infield is All Shook Up,” then Elvis Andrus will absolutely be worth a draft pick, even in shallow leagues. Cheap steals from a late MI flier are exactly what you want.