An odd assortment of strengths and weaknesses. I’d rather have that than a bench player who’s mediocre at everything.

Young’s from Temple, Texas (like Lance Berkman). He played three years at New Mexico before the Braves signed him as an undrafted free agent. Young is listed at 5-8 and may be shorter than that, and the Braves (as they did with Marcus Giles) attempted to convert him to second base. That didn’t go too well, and he’s spent most of the time in the outfield. Young doesn’t have the greatest outfield range either and is best in left, but doesn’t have corner-outfield power.

Young’s strength as a hitter is on-base skills. A .295 career hitter in the minors, his OBP is .390. However, in 790 career minor league games, he’s hit only 20 homers. The fear is that on the major league level he won’t be able to hit with enough authority to keep pitchers honest, and that they’ll knock the bat out of his hands. If a player like this can manage to keep most of his walks and average when reaching the majors, he can be very successful, but a lot of them don’t.

Young’s stolen a lot of bases in the minors, 158, and been caught 68 times; he’s also hit 36 triples. His value as a pinch-runner is lessened on a team that’s already carrying Brandon Hicks, who can’t do anything offensively but pinch-run.

Matt Young Statistics