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Best case scenarios, oh, and Spring Training Game 1 open thread: 28 February 2007

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Wainwright olsen
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My contest thread keeps on resetting to 'comments disabled' as a spam guard. I'm re-enabling the comments just for today. If you haven't, go vote. If that doesn't work, feel free to send me an email containing your vote. As, in case you haven't noticed, spring training games start today!

Update [2007-2-28 13:6:7 by lboros]: re the "comments disabled" thing --- all threads to default to that after 1 week as an anti-spamming measure. but the manual override should be good for today. [end update]

A while ago, lb asked us who the most disappointing prospect in recent memory was--which can't-miss guy that came up through the Cards system that failed us the worst. Well, that was during the midst of the hot stove season, when things are dark and cash-oriented. Since it is the first week of spring training, and as DanUp says, all there is to talk about is best-case scenarios, let's talk about the opposite of lb's discussion question, as the spring training games start:

What prospect has surprised you the most? It seems to happen that, just as often as strongly ballyhooed prospects flame out, you also seem to often have guys that just completely come out of nowhere to become superstars. Perhaps Chris Duncan will become the next example of this--a guy that wasn't highly considered makign the majors, and just sticking.

Just as we excluded Rick Ankiel from the previous discussion, I say that we have to exclude Albert from this discussion. His evolution from low round draft pick to interesting prospect to best player in baseball is unprecedented.

For me, the answer has to be Placido Polanco. I wasn't expecting much from the guy when he came up--just the standard sort of utility guy. Instead, he came out to be a solid major league player that really was able to evolve and become an everyday player for the Cardinals. I know that there are better examples in terms of prospect lists and VORP after hitting the majors, but I have never been as pleasantly surprised as I was by Polanco. I remember even being really happy for him when he was named the MVP in the ALCS. Who is the guy whose unexpected rise makes you smile the most?