Commentary

Position Battles: American League

The Yankees' starters, Detroit's second base, Baltimore's closer? We check 'em all.

Originally Published: February 21, 2011
By Jason Churchill | ESPN Insider
Scutaro/LowrieUS PresswireThe battle for shortstop between Marco Scutaro and Jed Lowrie is a key for Boston this spring.

Each week during spring training, Insider will give you the latest information and predictions on spring training position battles. This week we summarize top battles in each league.

Baltimore Orioles: Closer
The Orioles signed Kevin Gregg, retained Koji Uehara and will get Mike Gonzalez back, the latter of those presumably healthy and ready to compete. So who closes? An argument can be made for all three. Gonzalez finished strong last season and will make $6 million, so the O's could get Gonzalez some save chances early to try to pad his stats and then look to move him in July. Gregg is the most experienced stopper, with 122 career saves, including 37 a year ago. Uehara's control and 13-for-15 run as the closer last summer could bode well for the 35-year-old's chances. Right now it's a three-way tie.

Early hunch: Gregg will get the nod here because he could be a two- or three-year answer.

Boston Red Sox: Shortstop


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