38-Year-Old Outfielder – Free Agent
2014 Fantasy Baseball Outlook
There was no outlook written for Lew Ford in 2014. Check out the latest news below for more on his current fantasy value.
Lew Ford Contract Information:
Signed a minor league deal with the Orioles in November of 2012.
Ford was released from his minor league contract Monday, MASN reports.
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Lew Ford: MLB Games Played By Position
Lew Ford Split Stats (View Full Split Stats)
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Lew Ford: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
There was no outlook written for Lew Ford.
After spending four seasons in Japan, the Mexican League and the Independent League, Ford signed a minor league deal with the Orioles in May. He pounded Triple-A pitching with a .331/.390/.550 line in 62 games before getting called up in late July. Ford made some spot starts down the stretch and even started two postseason games, but the Orioles again tabbed him for a minor league deal for 2013. He will start in Triple-A and hope for another callup by way of attrition.
Ford will play in Japan next season with the Hanshin Tigers after his career declined the last three years with the Twins.
Ford will try to maintain a job as a reserve outfielder after his second consecutive disappointing season. He has a well-rounded game with decent power, good range in the outfield and surprising speed on the bases, but he hasn't been able to hit enough to stay in the lineup for any length of time. As a result, he has often been limited to being a defensive replacement and pinch runner. He does manage to steal bases despite his low playing time, but at age 30, his 15-homer, .827 OPS season in 2004 is a distant memory.
After a strong rookie year, Ford took a step backward in all phases of his game last season, despite getting consistent playing time in the second half after Torii Hunter went down. The most alarming dropoff was in his walk rate, as a high OBA had been the key component to his previous success. Ford has a well-rounded game with decent power, good range in the outfield and surprising speed on the bases. He should rebound given his prior strong eye at the plate, but he'll likely start the year in a reserve role.
After Shannon Stewart and Torii Hunter were injured early in the season Ford got a chance to be in the lineup every day and never looked back. It was a lucky break for Twins fans as since he wasn't dominant in any one area, Twins coaches hadn't considered him a regular up until that point. Now their opinion has changed. Ford has a nice all-around game with decent power, good range in the outfield and surprising speed on the bases. He'll be in the lineup everyday as the starter at DH or filling in at all three outfield positions. He should be able to help a fantasy team in all five major categories (SB, HR, RBI, Runs and AVG) and should be a good bet to repeat his breakout season since he's always shown the ability to get on base and take walks.
Ford isn't given much thought among the Twins coaches as a regular outfielder, but keeps posting solid on-base numbers that may finally find him a starting job somewhere. Ford hit .329 in his first trip to the big leagues with a .402 OBA despite missing a month with a broken hand. His high OBA was no fluke - he's posted strong on-base percentages throughout his minor league career. He also has some speed (28 steals in the minors in 2002). He's the kind of fourth outfielder that could luck into decent playing time and be a pleasant surprise for fantasy owners.