One of the things that caught my eye with Evan Grant's projected five year lineups was Torii Hunter still manning centerfield in 2012.
Hunter is 32 right now. In 2012, he'll be 37 years old. I don't think he's going to be able to handle centerfield at age 37.
And looking at his PECOTA comps, you have to wonder whether he'll even be able to still play at age 37.
The #1 PECOTA comp for Hunter is Glenallen Hill. He was a part-time player in his early 30s, and out of baseball by age 37.
#2 is Gary Ward, whose last full-time season was at age 33, and who was out of baseball by age 37.
#4 is Brian Jordan, done as a full-time player by age 35, although he kept playing through his age 37 season.
#5 and #6 are Tiger teammates Larry Herndon and Chet Lemon. Lemon, to me, is one of the best comps to Hunter, and his age 35 season was his last. Herndon was a part-time player in his early-30s, and was done by 35.
#7, Cesar Cedeno, was done as a full-timer by age 33, and done altogether by age 35. The elder Gary Matthews, #8, had his last full-time season was age 35, and his last season at age 36.
#10, Al Cowens, was done as a full-timer by age 33, and retired before he turned 35. #11, Dave Henderson, was done by 35. So were #14 and #18, Jeffrey Leonard and Bernard Gilkey.
The only guys on the comp list who really sustained solid careers into their late 30s are Andre Dawson and Moises Alou. And Hunter isn't in their league as a hitter.
Torii Hunter isn't an elite centerfielder. He's a good, not great, player who is going to be worse, not better, over the next five years than his previous five years. He's a guy who will probably be no more than a 4th outfielder, if that, four years from now.
Please, please, please...no Torii Hunter in Texas.