Gushing over Torii Hunter

Baseball blogs are already ridiculing today's Kurt Streeter column in the L.A. Times worshiping at the feet of new Angels center fielder Torii Hunter, a good but not great hitter (and still pretty good, if 32-year-old, defensive player.) Streeter calls nice-guy Hunter "everything a baseball player should be," and seems to think he's the big bat the Angels need to support Vladimir Guerrero. Never mind that Hunter's career on-base percentage is lower than Juan Pierre's, and that Torii's strong contract season this year was the first time since 2002 that he cracked .500 in slugging. Angels-watcher Rob at 6-4-2, noting the the Angels now have the oldest outfield in their history, describes the Streeter column as "the hyperbole machine winds up." Baseball Think Factory urges Streeter to "stick to the street beat," with commenters parodying the gushing style. The emerging consensus among students of baseball seems to be that the key to the move significantly helping the Angels offense is the move they make next, with their glut of outfielders. Hunter, of course, would have been a big upgrade over Pierre in the Dodgers lineup.

Phil Wallace at SoCal Sports Observed took the more sober approach to the Hunter signing.

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