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11/17/1978 (38 y, 4 m, 7 d)
1997 June Amateur Draft - Round: 1, Pick: 26, Overall: 26, Team: Baltimore Orioles
Add New Contract
McDonald has retired to take a job in the Cubs' front office, the team's official site reports. (4/19/2014)
Darnell McDonald Makes 7 of 10 Red Sox Fans Very H»
Robert J. Baumann (NotGraphs)
Red Sox Ship Out Kevin Youkilis
Paul Swydan (FanGraphs)
May Day Dotes: Colón, McDonald, Perkins
Robert J. Baumann (NotGraphs)
Robert Andino & Ryan Sweeney: Cheap Waiver Wire A»
Howard Bender (RotoGraphs)
Replacing Jacoby Ellsbury
Mike Podhorzer (RotoGraphs)
(Click Year to Expand /
McDonald likely returns as the Red Sox fifth outfielder next season. While he doesn't do anything particularly well, he's a useful backup. It will be tough for him to receive extended playing time with the Red Sox starters (plus Ryan Kalish) in the fold, but with the injuries, he might start the season with decent playing time. (Chris Cwik)
A first-round pick way back in 1997, Darnell McDonald made a minor fantasy splash in 2009 and 2010 when the Red Sox, depleted by injuries, gave him playing time. In 2010, especially, he proved to be fairly useful as a stopgap. As a fourth outfielder, he sort of made sense, as he could play center field acceptably, and had just enough pop and plate discipline to get by. He faded away from the Sox and ended up getting a few plate appearances for the Yankees in 2012 before finishing in the minor leagues and becoming a free agent. McDonald is now in his mid-30s and offers little in the way of upside, so even if he does find his way onto a major league roster before your fantasy draft, it probably will be as a reserve. If he does make it onto a 25-man roster, he still is not a draft target. (Matt Klaassen)
The Quick Opinion:
McDonald has had his uses in the past, but he currently does not have a team, and if he does, he still probably is not worth drafting.
The 35-year old journeyman outfielder is looking to compete for a bench job here in his second season with the Cubs, but is likely to spend most of the year at Triple-A Iowa once again. There's simply nothing exciting about his game as he doesn't possess a whole lot of power or speed nor does he hit for a high average. Both his walk and strikeout rates are average and he makes decent contact, but he spends as much time mashing the ball into the dirt as he does hitting it in the air, which tends to keep his batting average on balls in play suppressed. The subsequent rate stats he produces are at levels that don't exactly scream with promise. The Cubs have plenty of outfielders just like that, and all of them are younger than McDonald with more upside, so while he may earn a potential call-up at some point should some of the youngsters fail, he doesn't hold much in the way of fantasy value, even in the short-term. (Howard Bender)
The Quick Opinion:
After spending the majority of 2013 in the minors, McDonald will once again receive an opportunity to compete for a bench job with the Cubs in the spring of 2014. Both his bat and his speed are on the lower end of the spectrum, so the chances of the 35-year-old gaining an opportunity over one of the many Cubs outfielders who are younger are remote, at best. Should he open the year at Triple-A Iowa, there's a chance that he'll earn a promotion if injuries hit the North Side, but even then, his fantasy value is minimal.
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Updated: Friday, March 24, 2017 3:37 AM ET
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