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2009 Protected List – The Probables

Today is the third installment in the 2009 Atomic Roadrunner protected list preview. We’ve already identified nine players that are keepers, now we’re moving on to “The Probables” – guys that it makes sense to protect, are generally a good value, but wouldn’t be shielded from expansion, if you know what I mean. Here’s the breakdown:

Todd Wellemeyer
2 Years – $5
13-9, 3.71 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 134 K’s
Nice pickup in week two. Wellemeyer received the benefit of Cardinals pitching coach Dave Duncan, who was able to stretch out the career reliever. He had some rough spots in June and July as he fought through some elbow soreness, but he is a serviceable #3/#4 starter. Good for $5, obviously.

Mat Gamel
3 Years – $5 (Minors)
.329 Average, 19 HR, 96 RBI, 96 Runs (Double-A Stats)
Gamel is one of the top Brewers prospects, and he had a tremendous season at Double-A, even though he slumped in August and September as he was moved up to AAA and a September call-up to Milwaukee. It was later revealed that he had some elbow soreness that was affecting his swing. His defense is a question mark, but he may be called up in May a-la Ryan Braun two seasons ago. Right now the Brewers are creating a Bill Hall / Mike Lamb platoon at 3B.

Chase Headley
2 Years – $5
.269 Average, 9 HR, 38 RBI, 34 Runs, and 4 steals
Last year, Headley was essentially where Mat Gamel was last season. The Double-A MVP in 2007, he was picked up, did well in spring training, was sent down, and was called up in early June. Headley, however, is a solid defender at the hot corner, but was moved to OF due to the presence of Kevin Kouzmanoff, who can’t play anywhere else. With more AB’s and confidence, Headley should improve his average and his counting stats.