THE NEWBERG REPORT — SEPTEMBER 1, 2007

Jason Botts has 92 big league at-bats this year. He’s hitting .207/.288/.304. One home run, eight RBI, 35 strikeouts.

Botts had 90 at-bats for AAA Oklahoma in April. Even though he’d ravaged Pacific Coast League pitching to the tune of an .897 OPS in 2005 and a .980 OPS in 2006, the notoriously slow starter put up an April line of .200/.295/.300. One home run, 14 RBI, 28 strikeouts.

That’s Botts. That’s what he does.

With almost identical first months in AAA and the big leagues this season, if Botts replicates his second RedHawks month — .361/.458/.546 — in September, then we have our 2008 designated hitter. Which is not to say that he needs to throw a 1.004 OPS up there (or 1.138, as he did in June, or 1.194, as he did in July).

But he can’t continue to look up at .600 and hope to lock down a 2008 spot going into the off-season.

New month. Time for those cylinders to start clicking.

I believe they will.

You can read more from Jamey Newberg at www.NewbergReport.com.

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