If you believe the rumors, the Cubs are continuing to talk to Texas about outfielder Marlon Byrd and may be talking to the Red Sox about Coco Crisp in their quest for that extra righthanded-hitting outfielder who can play all three OF positions.
The 30-year-old Byrd has had a miserable spring, hitting just .152 (5-for-33) and losing ground in his battle with David Murphy (11-for-28, .393) to win a starting spot in the Rangers outfield.
The 28-year-old Crisp has played in only two games this spring, sitting out the past 12 days owing to "tightness in both groins." As of Friday, Crisp remained hopeful he would be able to join his teammates on their flight to Tokyo next Wednesday. The Sox are scheduled to play two exhibition games against Japanese teams before opening the AL season, in Japan, against the A's on March 25th.
A side-by-side look at the two:
Last year, Byrd saw time in all three outfield positions for the Rangers, the majority of it in centerfield, where he turned 88.7% of the balls hit into his fielding zone into outs.
While patrolling center for the Red Sox, Crisp did even better, turning in a zone rating of 90.9%, which placed him fourth among AL centerfielders.