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Fletcher, Ward, Walsh, Adell + Ohtani - future young core

Duren, Duren

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Projecting into the future is always a temptation. And usually doesn't go as expected. Retrospect always reveals what went wrong. 

Let's go back to 2020 for the sake of convenience. The covid year where games played were relatively normalized.

Talk was that Fletcher, Walsh, Ward, Adell would be long time starters with better than average results. And Ohtani had unlimited potential, but was still unproven and had risks as a two way player. 

Fletcher, Walsh and Ward were 26. Ohtani 25. Adell was the can't miss multi talented youngster at 21. 

Of that group,  Walsh had an OPS+ of 157. Fletcher of 120. Ward at 96. Ohtani only at 79, with Adell at a weak 30. 

Walsh, Fletcher and Ward were expected to also be solid or better in the field. Ohtani had shown power and potential on the mound given his arm problems but hadn't found himself yet. The key word for Adell was patience. And recognition that he faced a bigger learning curve than expected. 

Anyways, things have gone dramatically terrible for Fletcher, Walsh and Ward. With serious doubt about their futures. 

Adell still is on his learning curve and may never amount to anywhere near early projections. 

And Ohtani became the greatest star in the game for three years. But didn't have the team/organization around him to translate it to post season play. 

Going forward,Ohtani likely is out of the equation. Adell is still in the starting blocks. Walsh and Fletcher have been shown that they are unwanted, only in the roster now for emergency purposes. And Ward faces big challenges even resuming his career. 

And elsewhere,Trout's health and MVP production have regressed. 

I don't want to go into other players and issues here, but just wanted to isolate these players as examples of how even shorter term  projections can sometimes go wrong. And the concept of a 'young core' is tenuous with plenty of risks.  

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