With Manny now on board, let's take a look at what the lineup may look like this year. Well, I should say, here's what I would like to see the lineup look like:
1. Rafael Furcal, SS - the obvious choice with his combination of speed, on-base ability, and decent power
2. Orlando Hudson, 2B - a good fit with his ability to move runners over and find ways to get on
3. Manny Ramirez, LF - makes everyone around him better
4. Matt Kemp, CF - now is the time for him to step up into the all-around threat that he can be
5. Andre Ethier, RF - thrived with Manny in the lineup
6. Casey Blake, 3B - veteran hitter who fits in nicely in this spot
7. James Loney, 1B - could hit higher with more consistency and less double play balls
8. Russell Martin, 2B - another guy who could hit higher, but can be a good threat at the bottom
Looking at this lineup, the funny thing is that everyone except Furcal could be in a different spot. Should O Dog be at the top or at the bottom? Should Ethier continue to be in front of or behind Manny? Can a true #3 hitter step up and let Manny hit cleanup? Will Kemp handle being the cleanup hitter? Does Martin deserve to hit higher?
Like I said, lots of questions, but they're all good ones for Joe Torre to have. Plenty of time to figure it all out.