2010 could see a bevy of good comeback performances for some key players that suffered from injuries last season. Some notables include;
Xavier Nady: Signed pretty quietly with the Cubs after undergoing Tommy John for the second time in his career, which should say something to his ability to recover from injury. After a career year in 2008 the Cubs should be optimistic of the production a healthy Nady can bring. A line of .280-18-75 seems entirely possible.
Jay Bruce: Lets forget that Bruce plays in an extreme hitters park and his disappointing .223 AVG last year. Bruce hit 22 home runs in 68 fewer at-bats than when he hit 21 in 2008. He also missed 2 months with a broken wrist, but finished the year very strong with .326-4-17 in his final 46ab’s. Bruce turn’s 23 in April and has a very, very high ceiling. A .353 average in September points to a big 2010.
Brandon Webb: After throwing only 4 innings last season, Webb is primed for a comeback. The most recent reports have him feeling “good” after his latest throwing session and before this injury he was arguably the most consistent pitcher in baseball, never sporting an ERA above 3.59. A lot of eyes will be on him for the rest of the spring and after picking up his 8.5 million dollar option, the D’Backs will probably be pretty cautious.
Jake Peavy: Yes Peavy moved from the NL to AL. And yes he moved from an extreme pitchers park to an extreme hitters park. He’s also coming off an injury plagued season that limited him to only 16 starts. Despite all of this, Peavy is still an ace. A career ERA of 3.26 and 9K/9 combined with the fact that he’s only 28 and made 3 good starts after returning from injury show that Peavy is a good bet for a big comeback season.
Shaun Marcum: Marcum had recovered from Tommy John last year, but the Jays were out of the race and it didn’t make sense to rush him back while not in contention. He did make 5 starts in the minors with a 2.30 ERA and had a solid 2008 with an ERA of 3.39. Marcum doesn’t give up a lot of hits though he will serve up some taters, but he will be an instant upgrade to the Jays rotation.
Conor Jackson: Jackson was limited to just 99 at-bats last year while he suffered from Valley Fever. In the 3 season prior he had averaged a line of .292-14-71 while rarely striking out, something the D’Back lineup is lacking. Jackson will be welcomed back it the fold with open arms and should be able to produce solid numbers again.
Kelly Johnson: Another Diamondback albeit a new one, Johnson missed time last year and also played with wrist tendinitis. That combination probably helped contribute to his disappointing .224 AVG, but his home run and stolen base rate stayed on par with the rest of his career. Keeping that in mind and noting that he is moving to a more hitter friendly park we may be able to look to Johnson for a solid bounce back season.
Chris Davis: Based on what I’ve seen myself, Davis is going to be a strikeout machine for his career. He also has monster power. A horrible eye and no concept of the strikezone earned him a demotion in July, but upon returning to the Rangers he his .308-6-26 in 133 at-bats. Hopefully Davis can limit his K’s to only a slightly record-breaking pace over the course of a full season and show what kind of power he has over 500+ ab’s.