Through October 1, 2000
& Scouting Report
Designated Hitter, Right Field, Left Field
December 10, 1964, Santiago ,
Not drafted by an MLB team.
Claimed off waivers by the Atlanta Braves on Aug. 16, 1996.
After spending two seasons in the Mexican League, where he batted .377 and .381, Luis Polonia signed a minor league contract with the Tigers. He hit .323 in 42 Triple-A games before being recalled on May 26. Polonia had his best offensive season ever, filling Detroit's leadoff hole and taking at-bats away from the disappointing Gregg Jefferies.
Hitting, Baserunning & Defense
Polonia was fed a steady diet of breaking balls in Mexico, allowing him to become a much better hitter. He still isn't patient and draws far fewer walks than is ideal for a leadoff man. As he has gotten older, Polonia has developed more power. His 10 home runs in 1999 were one more than he totaled in his previous seven major league seasons. Polonia isn't as fast as he once was, but he's still a threat to steal whenever he reaches base. He's a below-average outfielder who lacks arm strength.
Polonia showed enough last year to warrant a one-year, $1.3 million contract from Detroit after declaring his free agency in November. There are glaring holes in his game, particularly defensively, but he still has a lot to offer.
Scouting Report Source: STATS, Inc. Copyright 2000 STATS, Inc.
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