Brad Snyder "made a big impression" on the Chicago Cubs, and they feel his major league career is "not far away" according to Bruce Levine of espn chicago. The Cubs are expecting Brad Snyder to join them this spring as a non-roster invitee according to Mlb reporter Carrie Muskat.
I think the big impression Levine was refering to is Snyder's line of .379/.463/.602 for an ops of 1.065 in 55 games this winter in the mexican league with 80 hits,16 doubles, 2 triples, 9 homeruns and 48 rbis in just 211 at bats. Snyder also had 18 stolen bases and was caught stealing 5 times.
Snyder was the NCAA mid-american conference mvp, and was named to the college All-American 1st team in 2003 for Ball State University. He was the 18th pick in the 1st round of the 2003 draft by the Cleveland Indians. Snyder is 6ft 3in tall 210 pounds. He is a 27 year old left-handed outfielder, with a plus arm in the outfield.
Snyder is more suited as a rightfielder, but he has played all three outfield spots in the minors appearing in 184 games in centerfield with a .986 fielding percentage with 4 errors, 139 games in rightfield with a .981 fielding percentage with 5 errors, and 9 games in leftfield with a .944 fielding percent with 1 error. His career minor league batting line is .274/.353/.473 with an ops of .826. Snyder hit left and righthanded pitching in AAA Iowa last year, he hit .290 vs LHP with 6 homeruns and 17 rbis vs RHP he hit .274 with 8 homeruns and 27 rbis he was slowed a bit last summer after hurting his wrist.
In the Mexican league he hit for a .372/.426/.570 line against LHP and against RHP he hit for a line of.384/.487/.624. What is Snyder's knock, why hasn't he played in the majors yet? He strikes out a lot! Yet so do a lot of a lot of major leaguers. Some see Snyder as a 4A guy, and some including myself feel he maybe a late bloomer, like Casey McGehee who the Cubs gave up on last year before the Brewers picked him up and he went on to have a stellar season with a .310/.360/.499 batting line in 116 games playing at third base. He would have been a nice insurance policy when Ramirez was injured last year.
If Snyder makes the cut in spring training he would be a very solid 4th or 5th outfielder and left-handed power bat off the bench. He would also be a good insurance policy should Soriano, Fukodome, or Marlon Byrd get injured or struggle at the plate. He is also much better defensively in the outfield than Micah Hoffpauir, Hoffpauir can play firstbase as well though and Snyder has only played the outfield because of his speed and plus arm.
Would Snyder be a solid bench addition for the cubs? What do you think?