Tuesday, December 4, 2007
Report: Cabrera shaping up as teams consider deal
ESPN.com news services
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- As teams consider sending prospects to the Florida Marlins for Miguel Cabrera, some have raised concerns about the third baseman's fitness.
But Cabrera, who along with Johan Santana is expected to be one of the most highly-sought names at baseball's winter meetings, has reportedly been working out during the offseason to address those concerns.
"He looks good," said Los Angeles Angels catcher Mike Napoli, who has been training with Cabrera for the last three weeks, according to the Los Angeles Times. "He's starting to slim down, and he's getting real strong."
Chicago White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen, who saw Cabrera in Miami on Sunday, said the third baseman "has lost about 15 pounds, maybe a little bit more," according to the Times. "If you see Miguel Cabrera now, you will be surprised."
The White Sox and Angels are two teams that have shown interest in Cabrera, who hit .320 with 34 home runs and 119 RBIs last season for the Marlins. He has a career .313 batting average over five seasons with the Marlins, as well as a career .542 slugging percentage.
But Cabrera, who was listed at 185 pounds when he was called up to the majors in 2003, played 2007 at about 255 pounds and made an NL-high 23 errors at third.
Trainer Sean O'Brien, who has been working with Cabrera, didn't say how much weight he has lost. "But he's changing his body composition," O'Brien said, according to the Times. "He's leaner. He's combining weight loss with an increase in muscle mass."
"I told the Marlins he's going to be in the best shape you've ever seen him in," Guillen said, according to the Times. "Whoever gets this guy is going to have a heck of a ballplayer with a different mentality. He's a big man and he has to take care of himself. ... He has the power and talent to be one of the best players ever."