With Dunn and Abreu gone our non Mannny alternatives are shrinking. Each day until he signs I'm going to post a possible alternative that does not include Juan Pierre as our starting left fielder. None of these idea's are as good as Manny in LF but it is Feb 12th and Manny is not here.
With Dunn being signed by the Nationals, BABlue pointed out that they now have a plethora of outfielders. Dunn is going to be the 1st baseman. That leaves three outfield spots for Austin Kearns, Lasting Milledge, Elijah Dukes, Josh Willingham, Willie Harris, and Wily Mo Pena. It also leaves Nick the Stick on the bench and he's not happy about it.
So the proposal is to give the Nationals a middling prospect for Nick the Stick and stick him at 1st base moving Loney to LF. Loney in RF didn't work out very well, but Loney should be able to handle LF.
Nick when healthy" can match Dunn with the bat. He doesn't have Dunn's home run power but he actually gets on base at a much higher clip and can slug over .500 to boot. Unlike Dunn, Nick has a good glove to go with it (+6 from 2005-2007). He has posted an OPS+ of 138, 93, 137, 149, 123 over the last five years that he's seen action(missed all of 2007) and is at the end of a contract that will pay him 5.5 million in 2009. In his last healthy season in 2006 he had a triple stat line of 290/428/520. His lifetime OBP is just a notch below .400 at .396.
After thumb ('01), knee, wrist ('02), hand, back ('03), back, cheek ('04), heel ('05), hand, leg ('06), leg ('07), wrist ('08) no one is larger health risk then Nick Johnson. He claims to be healthy now but you that could change by the time the next Santa Ana's hit us. That is why he could be had for cheap.
Because the payoff could be huge. Many people were willing to sign Dunn and move him to 1st and put Loney in LF. Nick Johnson in his best year was better then Adam Dunn by 2.7 wins. He just need his health. The gamble isn't huge because the cost to acquire him should be minimal and his salary is certainly worth the gamble. He came up with Torre and Mattingly for whatever that means.
Dunn Versus Johnson