The book on ... Ryan Howard

BOB ELLIOTT -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 9:58 AM ET

What a major-league scout says: "I know a lot of people are complaining about Jim Thome going to the White Sox. There isn't a scout that I know who wouldn't have made that deal. Now would they have eaten less of the salary? That's another story.

"This kid (Howard) is something special. He's a pure hitter. He's about like Carlos Delgado with the glove, average on a good day, below average on a bad day. But it's like the old question? Who plays first? The guy with the best bat."

"This kid is going to hit 50 homers. And he'll do it again and again. The only position player on that team who is close to him is the shortstop (Jimmy Rollins). I like him a lot. You can have Pat Burrell and his numbers, same with Bobby Abreu.

"I'll take Howard and Rollins any time, any day."

TEAM AB AVG. HRS RBIS

Phillies 290 .286 27 68


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