A scout's take

Mlb Week

August 13, 2006|By DAN CONNOLLY

On Lastings Milledge, New York Mets' 21-year-old outfielder

Ability -- He's a five-tool guy. He can legitimately hit and hit for power. He can run and throw and play D. He's an exciting guy, a lot of energy. I don't think he'll hit 40 [home runs], but he is a 20-25 guy. And he's a threat to steal 25 bases, and that's nothing to sneeze at.

Attitude -- A guy I trust who knows him well said he's a really good kid, he just gets a little bit lazy practicing, working on his hitting. He is a game player, and when the bell rings, he is there. Between the lines, he plays all-out. He just needs to develop a little more work ethic.

Comparison -- He kind of reminds me of [Oakland's] Milton Bradley, but Milton Bradley had serious [behavioral] problems. I don't think that's really the case here. In terms of style of play, he's like Bradley or a lot better version of [New York Yankee] Melky Cabrera.

Note -- "A scout's take" features one major league scout's opinion on a particular player each week. A revolving roundtable of scouts is used. Because of potential tampering, the scouts are anonymous.

Say what?

"I'm happy it's not a big deal. ... But, really, I'm not happy at all."

Minnesota Twins left-hander Francisco Liriano, who was placed on the disabled list last week with a chronic mild strain of the ulnar collateral ligament in his left elbow and related weakness in his left shoulder. The rookie, who was 12-3 with a major league-leading 2.19 ERA, said he was relieved that surgery wasn't necessary and he vowed to return this season.

Numbing number

25

The number of consecutive starts in which Chicago Cubs All-Star pitcher Carlos Zambrano has thrown at least 100 pitches. On Wednesday, Zambrano lasted just 4 2/3 innings in a loss to Milwaukee and still threw 109 pitches.

What's up?

The American League playoff race shifts to Boston and Minnesota this week. The Red Sox host the Detroit Tigers and New York Yankees, while the Twins get the Chicago White Sox for three beginning Friday. In the National League, the St. Louis Cardinals host Cincinnati for three games starting Tuesday. San Francisco has four games at San Diego and then hosts archrival Los Angeles for three games starting Friday.

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