Rookie of the Year Picks – AL


Well, a spirited debate has broken out over the plethora of NL candidates. The AL is less stocked, but the way I see it, there are three main candidates. Here they are, in the order I would pick:

1) Austin Jackson, CF, DET

2) Neftali Feliz, RP, TEX

3) Brian Matusz, SP, BAL

Let me make this clear, however: Neftali Feliz will be the winner.

Probably unanimously.

And he certainly is a worthy candidate, especially given the precedent that relief pitchers have for winning the award. Three of the last ten AL Rookie of the Year Award winners (Kazuhiro Sasaki, Huston Street, and Andrew Bailey) were closers. Feliz was an instrumental member of the Rangers’ run in 2010, converting 40 of 43 save chances and leading the league in games finished. He was one of the top closers in the league.

My pick, Austin Jackson, had a very good rookie season as well. The centerpiece of the Granderson deal last off-season, met his reasonably high expectations. He played the full year and put up a slightly above league average 102 OPS+ while playing a valuable position. He topped 100 runs (thanks in large part to teammate and MVP candidate Miguel Cabrera), smacked 34 doubles, stole 27 bases, and finished 2nd in the league with 10 triples.

By my estimation, Jackson was about the 7th or 8th best centerfielder in the American League, which is still very good for a rookie. Feliz was better at his job than Jackson was at his. But Jackson’s job – full time CF – was more important. He played in 1256 innings. Feliz pitched 69. Jackson accumulated 675 plate appearances. Feliz faced 269 batters.

Longterm, who among the AL rookies is going to be best? I’m going to go with my 3rd place guy – Brian Matusz. The Baltimore southpaw went 10-12 with a 98 ERA+ in his first year, but, as a starter, his ceiling is higher than Feliz’s. As for Jackson? 170 strikeouts is fine if you’re Adam Dunn and you regularly crank 40 homeruns a year. Jackson is not a power hitter. He’s a 1-2 hitter who needs to make more contact in order to be effective long-term. Then again – he’s 23. He’s got time to work on that.

Honorable Mention:  Brennan Boesch

185 Responses to “Rookie of the Year Picks – AL”

  1. Cameron Says:

    And that bit where A-Jax struck out 170 times, combined with some streakiness made his overall numbers seem less impressive to me. Wasn’t he offensively dead for about two or three months? Jackson was good, but most of his value came from the fact he batted in front of Miguel Cabrera.

    I like Feliz and I really don’t have a problem listing him as my favorite. I know most guys here don’t like closers in general, and it’s probably a product of me being far younger than most guys here, but I’d give it to Feliz, the kid was lights-out all year.

  2. garcia Says:

    none of those three pitchers won the AL Cy Young.

  3. Raul Says:

    You meant to write “of the last 10 AL Rookies of the Year…”, not “AL Cy Young winners”, as I don’t recall Huston Street winning a Cy Young. Nevertheless, I see your point.

    Add Carlos Santana to Honorable Mention, or as we like to call it: 2010 AL ROY Except For A Freak Injury

  4. Bob Says:

    I doubt it will be unanimous as the Detroit writers will pick Austin Jackson. Of course I hope Austin Jackson wins. If Galaragga had been credited with a perfect game, would the play by Jackson help him even more?

  5. Raul Says:

    It may have, Bob.

    I mean I still remember Rusty Greer’s catch on Kenny Rogers’ perfect game. Or was it a no-hitter?

    I agree that Detroit writers will certainly vote for Jackson. It’s very hard to get unanimous votes.

    I mean Ricky Henderson couldn’t get 100% on his HOF ballot. And who seriously thinks Ricky Henderson ISN’T a HOFer? Ya know?

    There is something to be said about winning ROY being a curse, or, maybe not so much of a great omen.

    Some of the past ROYs:

    Huston Street
    Bobby Crosby
    Dontrelle Willis
    Angel Berroa
    Jason Jennings
    Eric Hinske
    Kasuhiro Sazaki
    Scott Williamson
    Ben Grieve
    Marty Cordova
    Bob Hamelin
    Tim Salmon
    Pat Listach

    Sure, names you recognize, but not stars.

    Apparently Jerome Walton was the NL ROY in 1989. I’ve never heard of Jerome Walton in my life.

  6. JohnBowen Says:

    Thanks Raul. Long weekend.

  7. JohnBowen Says:

    Other ROY’s include Ichiro Suzuki, Albert Pujols, Derek Jeter, Mike Piazza, Carlos Beltran, Scott Rolen ect. ROY isn’t exactly a perfect predictor of future stardom, but a lot of those guys meet and exceed expectations in their careers.

    HOF balloting is open to like 500 people. Awards are only open to 28 or 32 depending on the league. Their votes are usually a lot more in line with the main-stream, and unanimous votes happen fairly often. Pujols won a unanimous MVP last year for example – granted, he was really good.

  8. brautigan Says:

    Any word as to whether Feliz goes to the rotation or not? Since Texas has a perfect candidate for closer in the minors, I wonder if Texas has any further designs on putting Feliz back into the rotation.

  9. Raul Says:

    Well I don’t know what the hell qualifies a writer to judge who is HOF-worthy and who isn’t. But that’s another story.

  10. Raul Says:


    Whatever Texas decides, they need to decide quickly. Both Joba Chamberlain and Jonathan Papelbon were supposed to be starting pitchers, and because the Yankees and Redsox wanted to give them innings in the Majors at young ages, they used them out of the bullpen. They did very well in the bullpen, but ultimately their success there may have undermined their plans to use them as starters.

    I think Neftali Feliz should be moved to the rotation immediately.

  11. Jim Says:

    Raul has a point @9, most young starting pitchers are still developing their secondary pitchers when they reach the majors, when they go to the bullpen and are used a lot, they seem to stop developing the secondary pitches and go with their best two.

  12. Raul Says:

    I read on ESPN that George Steinbrenner and Billy Martin will apparently be on this year’s HOF ballot.

    Also on this list: Marvin Miller, Vida Blue, Dave Concepcion, Steve Garvey, Ron Guidry, Tommy John, Al Oliver, Rusty Staub and Ted Simmons.

    I suppose Miller should get in, based on what I’ve read about him.

    Vida Blue was apparently a damn good pitcher and fell apart after he turned 31. But from age 21 to age 31, he put up a ton of innings and complete games with a damn good ERA.

    Ron Guidry: I don’t know what the knock is on him. He didn’t win 200 games and as many people have said, got screwed by Steinbrenner early in his career. It may have cost him the HOF.

    Rusty Staub might be looked differently if some of those doubles he hit were home runs instead. As it stands, I doubt he ever gets in.

    Al Oliver…same deal as Staub.

    Tommy John pitched forever. Wasn’t he on the mound like 6 weeks ago? He started his career in ’63 and retired in ’89. A span of time that covers more history than even that Forrest Gump movie. He won’t get in the HOF though.

    Ted Simmons — I can’t really say anything. Dude’s a catcher and they’re evaluated in a completely different way from other position players.

    If I had to elect any of those guys, I’d probably go with Miller, Blue and Gator.

  13. Cameron Says:

    Simmons was one of the finest hitting catchers in history, I’d give it to him. I’d say Simmons, Blue, and Tommy John.

  14. Bob Says:

    George will get in.

  15. Cameron Says:

    Well duh, I didn’t list him because he’s pretty much a given. Oh, and I’d vote Billy Martin in too.

  16. Lefty33 Says:

    “Ron Guidry: I don’t know what the knock is on him. He didn’t win 200 games and as many people have said, got screwed by Steinbrenner early in his career. It may have cost him the HOF.”

    The knock is pretty much what you said.

    Gator didn’t really start his career until he’s 26 and while he was dominant for a short period of time he’s done after only nine full seasons, only eight of which were good and like Mattingly he doesn’t have enough numerically to seriously be inducted.

  17. Cameron Says:

    Now see, I’d vote Mattingly on the grounds that it’s a Hall of FAME and he was one of the most recognizable, and I say best, players around in his time. He was surrounded by a shit lineup though. I think if he was in the current Yankees lineup, the production around him would’ve boosted his RBI totals to where he wouldn’t be questioned. It may just be favoritism because I like Donnie, but I think there’s stuff I think that makes him worthy that aren’t in stats.

  18. Bob Says:

    Cameron, I was not responding to you. Raul was the one who forgot to mention his name. Not sure if it was an oversight, or because he does not think he is worthy.

  19. Cameron Says:

    My bad Bob, but you reminded me I forgot to list him. Thanks for reminding me.

  20. Bob Says:

    Speaking of 1bman, the MLB Network is ranking their 9 best guys at that position.
    Pretty sure I have the top 2 in the exact order. Been meaning to create my own list. Fucking job.

  21. Hossrex Says:

    I don’t really watch American League games. I really don’t have a clue how good any of these guys are.

  22. brautigan Says:

    Cameron: Mattingly’s biggest and best season came with Rickey Henderson batting lead off. You know, 1985 and 1986, when Henderson scored 146 and 130 runs respectively. Hardly a “shit lineup”. Especially when you consider Don Baylor and Dave Winfield were in that same lineup.

  23. Hartvig Says:

    Don’t forget that Tampa used David Price mostly in the bullpen his first year. Earl Weaver/Ray Miller used to do it for most newly promoted minor league pitchers too. That said, I think they need to move Feliz into the starting rotation too, where he would be way more valuable. I’d vote for Jackson but I think Feliz will have to most value long term. Not near as strong a crop as in the National League.

    My votes for the HOF would be for Steinbrenner, Miller & Simmons. Al Oliver is right on the borderline but lost some of his best years to drugs without which I think he would have been a shoo-in. Blue’s numbers are inflated by the teams he pitched for. Same with Guidry. They both had 1 truly dominant season plus a couple others where they were outstanding and several where they were good but looked great because of the teams they were on. Staub, John & Conception are the perfect examples of where the line is drawn for us big Hall guys. Very, very good for a long, long time but never really in the discussion as the best in the game.

  24. Cameron Says:

    His best years, yeah, but look at what he had to work around in the late 80s and early 90s. His first five or six years were awesome, but when the infrastructure around Donnie fell apart, so did his numbers.

  25. Hartvig Says:

    If you consider Wynegar and Hassey a platoon at catcher, the 85 & 86 were league average or better at every position except shortstop, plus they had a pretty decent bench. With Henderson putting himself into scoring position almost every time he got on and Randolph getting on 40% of the time it was a perfect situation to produce some big RBI numbers. Because of his short career, Mattingly is on the border for the HOF but if I had a vote he would get mine.

  26. Hartvig Says:

    Cameron- Mattingly’s numbers fell off because his back gave out on him & pretty much sapped his power. The teams around him weren’t as good as the ones in the 80’s but he wasn’t near the same player either.

  27. Cameron Says:

    Ture, but I think the lineup probably took more out of him than his back. I’ll agree that his back is the main thing that will keep him out of the Hall, not for th epower outage, but because it shaved off so many years off his career.

  28. Raul Says:

    I don’t think Steinbrenner gets elected.

    He made too many enemies over his life.

  29. Cameron Says:

    Hey, Charlie Comiskey made so many enemies on his own team that they threw the World Series to make a decent paycheck and he got in, I could see Boss getting in easy.

  30. Hartvig Says:

    Cameron- You may be right since, from all accounts, Comiskey as an owner was a combination of the worst of Steinbrenner and Charlie Finley. What got him in was his career as a player and the quarter century that voters had to forget the bad stuff.

    And Raul, I just noticed Tim Salmon on your list at comment 4. I’m in agreement with everyone else on the list but Salmon had a damned nice career. You can replace him with Joe Charboneau. But not Harry Byrd, because he’s got a great name if not much of a career.

  31. Jim Says:

    It would be fitting for George to go into the hall with Billy Martin. They should place the plaques next to each other.

  32. Lefty33 Says:

    “I’d vote Mattingly on the grounds that it’s a Hall of FAME and he was one of the most recognizable, and I say best, players around in his time.”

    That’s not what matters.

    And I know this has been addressed by other posters today but shit lineup?

    Are you nuts?

    Randolph, Henderson, Winfield, Pags ’85-’87, Clark. The lineup was not the problem with the Yankee teams Mattingly played on Cameron.

    The problem was bullshit pitching.

    Tommy John, Rich Dotson, Tim Stoddard, Pat Clements, Dennis Rasmussen, Ed Whitson, Alfonso Pulido, John Montefusco, Dave LaPoint, Andy Hawkins, etc.

    The pitching he had on all his teams sucked dog/donkey/pick the farm animal of your choice’s balls. And that’s why Donnie never saw the postseason except for ’95 nor will he likely see the HOF.

    What will keep Donnie out will be the fact that his back gave out and because of that his numbers fall well short of what he needs to be a HOF player. There is no place in the Hall for would-a, could-a, should-a.

    Either a guy did or he didn’t. The rest is speculation and bullshit.

  33. Cameron Says:

    Donnie wasn’t even on the 95 postseason roster actually, he was out with a back injury. Taking a look at those teams, in between 88-92, it was pretty laughable. 4 years doesn’t seem like much, but that was pretty much a quarter of his career.

    I’ll admit, I said that by assuming that those bad Yankees teams were bad on both ends. Honestly, it really is his back that’ll keep him out.

  34. Cameron Says:

    Nevermind, I thought Donnie was out, but he wasn’t. Would’ve been funny as hell if was though.

  35. Raul Says:

    ESPN reporting that Joe Morgan’s contract is up and will not be renewed.

  36. Lefty33 Says:

    “Donnie wasn’t even on the 95 postseason roster actually, he was out with a back injury.”

    I guess it was Donnie’s ghost that hit .417 in the ’95 ALDS against the Mariners.

  37. Raul Says:

    I think I blacked out about that ’95 ALDS.

    All I remember is the Yankees clinching a playoff spot in Toronto (I hope that’s correct).

    I remember David Cone pitching in the ALDS. I remember being really afraid of Jay Buhner every time he came up. And then Edgar hit that double and Griffey scored. I was supposed to be asleep so I was miming F-bombs and cursing into the pillow because I didn’t want my mom to hear me. LOL

    Oh, and didn’t Randy Johnson shut out the Angels on the last day of the season? By the way, I really wish they’d go back to being the California Angels. I don’t like this Anaheim Angels or LA Angels crap. Bring back the old uniforms with the old logo.

  38. Cameron Says:

    Yep, statistically, the 95 Angels pissed away about a 98% chance to make the playoffs. I’m pretty sure the 95 M’s were a sort of divine intervention to keep that team in Seattle.

  39. Raul Says:

    From 1983 to 1987, Mattingly averaged a .545 Slugging Percentage.
    In 1988, he slugged .462.
    In 1989, he slugged .477.

    From 1990 to 1995, he slugged .405.

    It’s fairly obvious given everything we know about him offensively and defensively, he was on his way to a HOF career.

    It just seems that people who vote for the HOF penalize players for not putting up 6-7 years of mediocrity that pad on to the typical 5-6 seasons of excellence — which doesn’t make sense to me.

    In the same way that Gale Sayers’ shortened career does not de-value the NFL Hall of Fame, neither would Mattingly’s or other players like him de-value the MLB Hall of Fame.

  40. Cameron Says:

    Wow, I’m amazed that Cliff Lee’s been pitching so well. I mean, he’s been dead for 86 years!

  41. Mike Felber Says:

    I would choose Miller, John (not quite enough pitching quality, but partly for coming back from surgery, which was groundbreaking), & Simmons, given the value of a quality player there. The others did not do enough. If they had more good years, or 1/2 dozen brilliant ones, then I would argue otherwise. Donnie Baseball was a great guy, but alas, lefty is right, we cannot credit him for stuff he could not do. Had 4 excellent years, but not near epic, whether looking at WAR or eyeballing overall value. Similar to Blue.

    Neither technically nor common sense-wise should it be directly about fame. Though there are things that lead to fame, largely performance, that make fame & HOF worthiness correlated. But happening to be on great teams &/or markets should not tip the balance to get you in.

    but yeah, bring back those old uniforms & names! And since I was a small boy I loved the A’s Kelly green & yellow togs. So alive & joyous looking.

  42. Hartvig Says:

    Yeah but then you’re going to get those ugly brown & yellow Padres uniforms and some of the ugly “space age” Astro uniforms and Pittsburgh have had a couple of gems…

    Lefty- I hadn’t thought about Ed Whitson in years. A pretty good cautionary tale for Zach Greinke should the Yankees come calling. Of course, he only needs to go back as far as Javier Vazuquez to see that some players don’t belong in New York.

  43. Cameron Says:

    Greinke is a known head case with Generalized Anxiety Disorder so bad it shut him down in 07 and he barely did any interviews and didn’t even want to do the press conference for the Cy Young, and when he did all he did was talk about his upcoming honeymoon with his high school sweetheart.

    In short, Greinke’s a basket case and knows he’s a basket case. He likes KC for a reason, it may not be a winner (and said he may want to leave KC for that reason) but he wouldn’t readily expose himself to that much attention when he knows it will just make his GAD flare up to the point where he couldn’t even perform. NY is number one on his no-trade list for a reason.

  44. Cameron Says:

    Oh, and AL Gold Gloves are up today. Who’re your predictions? Here’s mine, keep in mind, I don’t pretend to understand defensive metrics, so this is a gut feeling.

    C – Joe Mauer
    1B – Mark Teixeira
    2B – Robinson Cano
    3B – Evan Longoria
    SS – Elvis Andrus
    OF – Ichiro Suzuki
    OF – Torii Hunter (Why was he moved to RF?)
    OF – Carl Crawford
    P – Cliff Lee

  45. Hartvig Says:

    Mark Ellis and Orlando Hudson are probably more deserving than Cano, but Ian Kinzler might sneak in, if they overlook his not playing a full season. There aren’t really any second basemen in the American League who are outstanding fielders. Hudson probably has the best reputation.

    Hunter has largely been living on his reputation for the past few years. He’s not the same player he was 4 or 5 years ago. Franklin Gutierrez was robbed last year. Maybe he’ll get some payback this season, even though he wasn’t quite as good.

  46. Raul Says:

    I actually thought Cano was pretty good this year, defensively.

  47. Jim Says:

    For you baseball card aficionados, Topps is running a top 60 cards of all time contest. They’ve selected 100 cards as the eligible entries. Seems strange having a contest to eliminate 40 cards, but hey.

  48. Raul Says:

    I vote for the Billy Ripken card that says Fk Face on the knob.

  49. Bob Says:

    Buehrle will win for pitchers after his Opening day gem. Just a prediction.

  50. John Says:


    I actually have the Mauer, Ichiro, Ramirez, Chipper, Sosa, Griffey, McGwire, and Bonds cards.

    Incidentally I never knew that was considered Barry’s RC, since it came out after his rookie year. I actually have both that card, and a topps traded card from the year before.

    This one card shop was selling lots of team sets, so I went ahead and bought the one with the 87 Pirates, thus getting Bonds. This was like 7 years ago.

    I would say the best card of those 100 is the Hank Aaron card where the picture is clearly flipped. He appears to be batting LH, and the writing on the jersey is backwards.

    Also, does Topps really think that every Mickey Mantle card was one of the top 60 of all-time? His RC certainly, but what’s special or influential about his ‘64 card, besides the fact that it’s Mickey Mantle?

  51. Hartvig Says:

    Raul- Yeah, I thought he looked good too. And he may very well win the gold glove. I think Ellis is the most deserving but not by a huge margin and then the differences get pretty small. I do have to admit I saw a lot more of Cano, Kinzler & Hudson than I did of Ellis and between the first 3 based just on what I saw it would be a coin flip between Cano & Hudson.

    I don’t get too worked up over Gold Gloves, especially since the Palmero fiasco.

  52. Raul Says:

    Happy Birthday Bob Gibson & Whitey Herzog.

  53. Raul Says:

    Bob Gibson started 482 games in his career…
    …and completed 255 of them.

    That’s 53%.

  54. brautigan Says:

    Raul: The Billy Ripken card was fleer, not Topps, so therefore, they won’t consider it. (I wonder if they will consider Bowman, since Bowman is now a subsidary of Topps?)

    The only reason I look at GG awards is to see who stratomatic will give a “1” to. Otherwise, it’s much ado about nothing.

    Cano had a good year defensively. He led the Major leagues (for 2B) in put outs, chances, double plays and had only 3 errors. He might pull it off, especially considering his batting prowess (hey GG voters notice this sort of thing, don’t they?).

  55. Raul Says:

    Way to call me out on that Fleer/Topps mistake, Brautigan.

    Interesting to note for Yankees fans: No Yankee catcher has won a Gold Glove since Thurman Munson in 1975. Now maybe it’s not a huge surprise, but a team that is contending from year to year should have snuck in one defensive stud back there in 35 years.

    Gold Gloves appear to rely heavily on reputation. Once a player wins the award once, he tends to get the award for multiple years.

    By the way, it says Gary Pettis won the GG in 1985, 1986, 1988, 1989, 1990. Who the hell is Gary Pettis?

  56. Bob Says:

    I believe he is the first base coach for the Rangers. He was very good with the glove, from what I recall.

  57. Raul Says:

    Thanks Bob.

    I just find it strange that I’ve never heard of a guy who’s won 5 Gold Gloves.

  58. Bob Says:

    I was living in Michigan when I was a lad, so I recall him playing for the Tigers.

  59. Cameron Says:

    Alright, the Gold Gloves are in and I didn’t do half-bad.

    C – Joe Mauer
    1B – Mark Teixeira
    2B – Robinson Cano
    3B – Evan Longoria
    SS – Derek Jeter
    OF – Ichiro Suzuki
    OF – Carl Crawford
    OF – Franklin Gutierrez
    P – Mark Buerhle

  60. Bob Says:

    Derek Jeter won the Gold Glove. I shit you not. Give him a 10 year contract.

  61. Bob Says:

    On BR Website, it actually says ” We Can’t believe it either next to Jeter’s name. I actually laughed out loud

  62. Jim Says:

    Except for Jeter, I’ve no complaints.

  63. Raul Says:

    I guess Elvis Andrus aint nothin but a hound dog.

    Was Mauer really that good behind the plate this year? Or is that the only name the voters recognized on the ballot?

  64. Raul Says:

    LOL!!! @ Bob.

    I went on Baseball-Reference and it’s true. It really does say that.

  65. Cameron Says:

    Oh my god, that bit on b-r is gold. If you click it, it shows that on defense, Jeter was worth ten runs below replacement defense level.

    Tomorrow is the NL and why not? Predictions!

    C – Yadier Molina
    1B – Adrian Gonzalez
    2B – Brandon Phillips
    3B – Ryan Zimmerman
    SS – Troy Tulowitzki
    OF – Justin Upton
    OF – Angel Pagan
    OF – Andrew McCutchen
    P – Adam Wainwright

  66. brautigan Says:

    I don’t know why Brett Gardner didn’t make the gg. And god knows why Derek Jeter has 5 of the damned things.

  67. Cameron Says:

    They needed to give Ichiro his tenth, so you know there’s really only two gold gloves up for grabs in the AL and Crawford and Gutierrez deserved them, but gun to my head, I’d think that Gardner might’ve been better than Crawford. No complaints though.

  68. Raul Says:

    Was Austin Jackson ever in the running for a GG? I thought he was pretty good.

  69. Hartvig Says:

    Raul- “Who the hell is Gary Pettis?”

    I saw him play many times back in the day. Centerfield was like 900 feet (there was actually a 125 foot flag pole on the playing field) and he could cover a ton of ground. Fast as he was, the guy who replaced him (Milt Cuyler) was even faster. Saw him hit a stand up triple once from the upper deck and it was like watching a road runner cartoon. Unfortunately, neither of them could hit worth a damn.

  70. Cameron Says:

    A-Jax is probably there with Gardner, good but not good enough.

  71. Mike Felber Says:

    Y’all want to go Apoplectic over the Jeter Apologists & anticipated play quality apocalypse? Here is some ammunition:

  72. Cameron Says:

    I… Ugh… I need a drink. This guy’s the “Stop Having Fun” guy.

    Managers don’t evaluate other team’s players defensively? Here’s a hint, if a guy’s a good defender, a good manager tells people not to hit to him. If they can pick up on obscure shit like a third-rate pitcher’s tell for when he throws a slider, he knows who the good gloves are on the other team. Dumbass…

  73. Raul Says:

    Posada is getting surgery on his left knee. According to an article on, Brian Cashman told Posada to come to Spring Training prepared to compete with Jesus Montero for the starting catching spot.

    Don’t want to read much into that. Cashman likely just said that as motivation and barring some miracle, we all know Montero is not “starting catcher” material. But I have to think it’s a small sign that the Yankees do not intend to trade Montero this off-season.

  74. Raul Says:

    And now I read in the NY Post (A pathetic excuse for a newspaper, but relatively informative when it comes to sports), that Posada has been informed that he will be the DH next season, and Montero, Romine and Cervelli will battle for the Starting Catcher position….unless John Buck becomes a feasible option.

  75. Raul Says:

    Happy Birthday:

    Norm Cash
    Larry Parrish
    Bob Stanley
    Jack Clark
    Shawn Green
    and the Gambler, Kenny Rogers.

    In 1961, Norm Cash had a season to remember. Playing for Detroit he hit .361/.487/.662 while driving in 132 RBI. Unfortunately, it came during the same season Roger Maris and Mickey Mantle were chasing Babe Ruth for the single season home run record, and Cash finished 4th in the MVP voting behind Jim Gentile. It should say something that even with Maris and Mantle being feared in their chase at immortality, it was Cash who led the league in Intentional Walks with 19.

    Everyone remembers Bob Stanley as the pitcher in Game 6 of the 1986 World Series who’s wild pitch to Mookie Wilson allowed the tying run to score. It may surprise you to know that at the time of his retirement in 1989, he was the Redsox’s all-time Saves leader with 132.

    Perhaps one of the poster boys for heated HOF debates between traditional baseball fans and sabermatricians is Jack Clark. A guy who didn’t reach any particularly special milestones in his career, but somehow managed a 137 OPS+ — which would seem to indicate he was one of the best hitters of his era. Yet he’ll never sniff the Hall of Fame. He may very well be The Line that separates the great from the immortal. Clark was in the news earlier this year for criticizing Mark McGwire’s steroid use admission.

    Kenny Rogers. A fantastic fielder of his position to managed a 20 year career winning 219 games. The highlight of which, came on July 28, 1994 when he pitched a Perfect Game to beat the California Angels 4-0. Rogers struck out 8 batters that night on only 98 pitches in a game that was completed in 2:08.

  76. Bob Says:

    Jack Clark is probably better known for going backrupt than his baseball skills.

  77. Raul Says:

    Yeah Bob,

    I read he had a huge collection of expensive cars and went bankrupt. But apparently managed to get on his feet in the late 90s

  78. Jim Says:

    A little Bob Stanley trivia that is appropriate since many of us bemoan how relievers are used today and pitch counts.

    In 1978 Bob Stanley appeared in 52 games, 49 in relief. In relief he averaged more than 11 batters per appearance, once pitching 8 1/3 innings and throwing 5+ innings 9 times. Stanley pitched 13 seasons with a record of 115-97 and an ERA+ of 119

  79. Hartvig Says:

    In todays game a manager would probably be arrested for using reliever like that. I’m still trying to get over Washington using back to back relievers for 1 pitch apiece in the AL League Champion Series. And he’s one of the better managers out there for not pulling the plug too quickly.

  80. Bob Says:

    In other baseball news, BA has the Yankees top 10. Guess who there top prospect is???

  81. Raul Says:


    How could it not be Montero?

  82. Bob Says:

    Did you peek first?

  83. Cameron Says:

    And NL Gold Glove time. Not as good this time.

    C – Yadier Molina
    1B – Albert Pujols
    2B – Brandon Phillips
    3B – Scott Rolen
    SS – Troy Tulowitzki
    OF – Michael Bourn
    OF – Carlos Gonzalez
    OF – Shane Victorino
    P – Bronson Arroyo

  84. Raul Says:

    No, I didn’t peek.

    I just can’t imagine any Yankee being higher than him right now.

  85. Raul Says:


    Scott Rolen is still getting it at 3B? I’m not saying he isn’t deserving, but he’s 35 years old. Was he that great this year?

    I’m not sure about Tulo.

  86. Cameron Says:

    Tulo was rated as one of the best defensive shortstops in the league if I read the stats right. As for Rolen, he still knows how to flash the leather. If Derek Jeter can win a Gold Glove, Scott Rolen can sure as hell win one.

  87. Raul Says:

    I don’t think any rookie has ever won a Gold Glove.

    What’s the cutoff in terms of plate appearances? I see that Norm Siebern won the Gold Glove in 1958 after not playing in the majors in ’57, and having 184 PAs in ’56.

    Actually, I see now that Johnny Bench won the ROY and GG in 1968.

  88. John Says:

    Also, don’t forget Ichiro. Although he was kind of a pseudo-rookie.

    The current cutoff is 135 plate appearances, 50 IP, or 45 days on the active roster (I think that’s all right). I think it used to be in terms of AB and they changed it around or something.

  89. John Says:

    Ironic that three Reds won gold gloves, even though defense was their achilles heel in the playoffs.

  90. Cameron Says:

    What can you do? You can have awesome defense in 162 games, but 3 bad games is all it takes to kill ya.

  91. Raul Says:

    I’m looking at the 1965 voting for AL MVP.

    A Twins player probably should have won it. But probably not Zoilo Versalles. Tony Oliva and Mudcat Grant look like they had better seasons.

  92. John Says:

    I think I’ve made it clear how I feel about all defensive metrics.

    But – Jeter was dead last in the AL in Rfield.

    I mean it’s not a stat I pay a lot of attention to seeing as Ken Griffey Jr., Robby Alomar, Steve Finley, and some other pretty awesome fielders have negative career values but…

    Jeter was last.

    And they gave him a gold glove.

    I mean, even though it’s a statistic that doesn’t take into account tons of factors (most significantly, team pitching staff)…

    Jeter was dead last.

  93. John Says:


    Go to the MVP voting page and sort by WAR


  94. Raul Says:

    What sucks about it, John, is that sometimes players or musicians or actors miss great opportunities to do the right thing in situations like that.

    If Jeter comes out tomorrow and says that he appreciates the Gold Glove award but that X-player was more deserving and gives it up, it would be a huge boost to Jeter’s image, the Gold Gloves’ image, and a great story for baseball.

    Instead, it’s going to become yet another debate about fielding metrics.

  95. Raul Says:

    I see what you did there, John.

  96. John Says:

    I don’t even trust fielding metrics in the slightest.

    I mean, defense is something that you just can’t get from numbers because there’s so much that you just have to see.

    You really have to see it in person to really get it. You watch on TV…well, a ball is hit and you just sort of see a guy going towards it. You don’t see the jump he gets on the ball, or most of the route he runs to get there.

    And there’s a million other things. Most of the fielders on the 2001-2002 Diamondbacks have terrible range factors and other metrics. But it’s not because they were bad, but because the two primary starting pitchers for that team allowed WAY fewer balls in play than typical pitchers.

    Or what if you have a team of mostly flyball pitchers? Outfielders will look great, infielders won’t.

    But if you’re dead last or close to it, in all fielding metrics consistently, year after year, with a revolving door of pitchers…I dunno, I get the hunch that at some point those variable just sorta even out. Plus, I’ve seen Jeter play enough games that he really does get late jumps and have less range to his left – at least as far as I can tell, like I said, tv is tough.

    It’s not an award that can be taken seriously as long as Jeter is winning them.

  97. Raul Says:

    Cameron’s boy, David DeJesus was traded to the Oakland Athletics for pitchers Vin Mazzaro and Justin Marks.

  98. brautigan Says:

    Is Chuck dead?

  99. Chuck Says:

    “I don’t think Steinbrenner gets elected.”

    Steinbrenner getting in is the biggest no brainer in the history of earth.

    George Steinbrenner made alot of people alot of money.

  100. Chuck Says:

    “Brian Cashman told Posada to come to Spring Training prepared to compete with Jesus Montero for the starting catching spot.”

    First prediction for 2011.

    Yankees set a major league record for most stolen bases allowed.

  101. Chuck Says:

    “Is Chuck dead?”

    Today may have been a good day for you, but not your lucky day. :)

    Did David DeJesus really get traded to Oakland?

  102. Chuck Says:

    Baseball America’s MAJOR LEAGUE ROY was Heyward, with Posey second, and Austin Jackson winning AL ROY.

    Their ML ROY for 2009 was Andrew McCutcheon, who SHOULD have been NL ROY.

    I think Heyward will win it.

    If I had a vote, I’d go with Starlin Castro.

    In the AL, I WANT Austin Jackson to win, just to shove it up Cashman’s dumb ass, if I had a vote, probably Danny Valencia.

    And, yes, Neftali will be a starter.

  103. brautigan Says:

    Welcome back from the dead Chuck. Glad to have you back.

  104. Chuck Says:

    I was in San Diego for a couple of days R&R, Braut.

    Seaworld, Seaport Village, Harbor Ferry to Coronado.

    Nice to be missed.

  105. Chuck Says:

    Dave Niehaus died tonite.

    HOF broadcaster with the Mariners since they started in 1977 and an all-time great guy.

    “…fly away baseball, fly away, my oh my”

  106. Raul Says:

    According to Gene Michael, Montero made big strides at toward the end of the season defensively.

    Or does Gene Michael’s opinion no longer carry any weight unless we’re talking about the early 1990s and Andy Pettitte, Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera?

  107. Cameron Says:

    *sigh* For Vin Mazzarro and Justin Marks. So basically, we gave up another great player for pocket change. Typical Moore trade. Guy knows how to work the farm, but at this rate, I’m afraid he’ll give up Zack Greinke for Luis Castillo and Oliver Perez.

  108. Jim Says:

    You know the characters around this place are beginning to remind me of the denizens of the Palace Flop House in Cannery Row.

  109. John Says:

    Thank you Bob, I thought it was pretty clear that it was sarcasm aimed at drawing the conversation away from coomunist Cuba.

    Sterlin Castro had a nice year. He was very shaky with the glove…made some great plays but some horrendous blunders. I’d put him 5th.

  110. Cameron Says:

    Starlin COULD be one of the best SS in the league, but I’d give him a few years before he’s at the top with the glove.

  111. Chuck Says:

    My apologies, John.

  112. Chuck Says:

    An old scout cliche’;

    “Nobody sees the same things in everybody.”

    Basically, not everyone’s eyes see the same things.

    That said, this ongoing media fellating of Jesus Montero is getting out of control.

    He DH’d more games than he caught the second half of this season.

    Does anyone think his increase in numbers might have had something to do with that?

    The Yankees released Chad Moeller, then resigned him.

    The Yankees signed Rene Rivera, who wasn’t even invited to anyone’s spring training this year.

    The Yanks brought Mike Rivera to spring training as a non-roster invite and he damn near made the team, which would have made Francisco Cervelli the everyday catcher in Scranton.

    The Yankees did everything possible to ensure Montero DIDN’T CATCH this season, and all we read and hear now is how he’s STILL the Yankees catcher of the future.

    The only sense missing here is common.

  113. Raul Says:

    For a guy who’s in virtually every Top 5/Top 10 MLB Prospects list, you really hate Montero, Chuck.

    I’m starting to think your judgment is clouded.

  114. Chuck Says:

    Starlin’s probably going to end up at second, or even the OF.

    He reminds me of Alfonso Soriano..good hitter, not so good defensively, and dumb as dirt.

  115. Chuck Says:

    I’m OK with that, Raul.

  116. Raul Says:

    So I’m reading this stupid article on the Jeter negotiations on ESPN. I don’t know why. But the article ends like this:

    “The Yankees have no plans to move Jeter from shortstop, but they do want him to play less than the 157 games he appeared in last season. They hope that prospect Eduardo Nunez can ease the load on both Jeter and third baseman Alex Rodriguez.

    They also could tell Jeter that over the life of his next contract, the Yankees reserve the right to move his position and/or drop him from the lineup due to performance.”

    Excuse me, are you f*cking kidding me? They could tell him they reserve the right to move him?

    Isn’t that like…I don’t know…common knowledge that every player knows since he’s 5 years old? You suck, you don’t play. Fuck you, ESPN.

  117. Cameron Says:

    The Yankees kinda wised up and they’re thinkign about making Gary Sanchez or Austin Romine the catcher of the future and have Montero be the future DH, just nobody ever wants to admit they’re breeding a kid to DH.

    And Silver Sluggers for both leagues tomorrow, my predictions.


    C – Joe Mauer
    1B – Miguel Cabrera
    2B – Robinson Cano
    3B – Evan Longoria
    SS – Derek Jeter*
    OF – Josh Hamilton
    OF – Jose Bautista
    OF – Delmon Young**
    DH – Vladimir Guerrero

    *-It’s Derek Jeter, it’s not like he deserves it, but he’ll win it.
    **-A .298/.333/.493 line with 112 RBI, 21 HR, and 46 2B, not bad.

    C – Buster Posey
    1B – Albert Pujols*
    2B – Dan Uggla
    3B – Ryan Zimmerman
    SS – Troy Tulowitzki
    OF – Carlos Gonzalez
    OF – Matt Holldiay
    OF – Jayson Werth
    P – Yovanni Gallardo

    *I picked this solely because Joey Votto won the Hank Aaron Award, I want to prove both awards are worthless.

  118. Cameron Says:

    “Isn’t that like…I don’t know…common knowledge that every player knows since he’s 5 years old? You suck, you don’t play. Fuck you, ESPN.”

    Mark Reynolds played 145 games this year. …That’s all.

  119. Raul Says:

    Yeah Cameron,

    But the Diamondbacks shouldn’t have to fucking tell Mark Reynolds in contract negotiations that “hey, if you don’t play well, we might move you down in the line-up or bench you”.

  120. Chuck Says:

    Jeter is an exception to every rule.

    He’s getting a big contract.

    He’ll walk away whenever he feels like he can’t play anymore, the Yanks will write him a big check, and that will be that.

    The Yanks aren’t going to pay him $20 million for the next five years on what he WILL do, but what he’s done.

    I have no problem with that.

    And if they think they’ll have some money issues later on, then they should try and buy out ARod, “insist” CC to opt out, and tell Cliff Lee to fuck off.

    Maybe with some of the money they’ll save they can get themselves a catcher.

  121. Raul Says:

    I have a problem with them paying Jeter for shit he did in 1999.
    Fuck that noise.
    Warner Brothers isn’t paying Prince for 1982.

  122. Cameron Says:

    Actually Raul, they’d kinda have to if 1999 is still selling copies. >_>

  123. Raul Says:

    Shut up Cameron.

  124. Cameron Says:

    Sorry Raul, I’m hard-wired to be a smartass.

  125. Chuck Says:

    The Yankees will be paying ARod til he’s 42.

    He’ll be HOF eligible when he’s 42.

    The Yankees gave AJ Burnett sixty two million dollars.

    The Yankees are the supposed front runners to give a $100 million dollar contract to a guy who was 12-9 last year.

    Their best minor league prospect is a DH.

    And all everyone bitches about is Jeter?

    I don’t get it.

  126. Cameron Says:

    I see Arizona’s shopping Mark Reynolds. Does anyone else think there’s a slight possibility of a Reynolds-Kouzmanoff centered deal between Arizona and Oakland?

  127. Raul Says:

    A-Rod’s contract has nothing to do with Jeter’s. Neither does Burnett’s. Neither does Teixeira’s. Neither does Sabathia’s.

    Whatever fucked up deals you gave before, shouldn’t mean you have to give a shitty deal now.

    By the way, there’s a 60% chance I’m walking into a Ford dealership this weekend to test drive a bunch of cars. And when it comes down to it and he’s asking me what he needs to do to get me to buy a Ford right on the spot, I’m going to stare the salesman in the eye and tell him “You fire Derek Jeter right now, and I’ll buy this car with all the options.”

    His commercials are the fucking worst.

    And for the record, no, I’m not buying a Ford. Or any car for that matter. I just want to see the look on the dealer’s face when I say that.

  128. Chuck Says:

    Yes, Cameron.

    Kirk Gibson has already told Reynolds if he doesn’t show an improved approach and attitude next season, starting in spring training, that he won’t play.

    Gibson said the Dbacks strikeout leader next year won’t surpass 120, which means Reynolds and Justin Upton both change their approach, or neither plays after the All-Star break.

    Or get some time in Reno.

  129. Cameron Says:

    I could see Upton trying to cut down and hit less than 120, Reynolds’ ass is shipped out of there. I was saying ship him to Oakland because I think it’s a trade that Beane might be willing to listen to.

  130. Chuck Says:

    You’re missing my point, Raul.

    Whatever deal the Yankees give Jeter it still won’t be the worst contract on the team.

    And it won’t be close.

  131. Cameron Says:

    True, they still have AJ Burnett. A-Rod may be overpaid, but at least he doesn’t suck.

  132. Chuck Says:

    “I was saying ship him to Oakland because I think it’s a trade that Beane might be willing to listen to.”

    Because he’s a retard?

  133. Cameron Says:

    Because the lineup lacks any kind of legitimate power threat outside of Chris Carter (and maybe Jack Cust if they don’t non-tender him again) and Reynolds slugs the piss out of that ball when he does make contact.

    …And yes, he is a retard.

  134. Chuck Says:

    There’s something to this DeJesus trade I’m not getting.

    Dayton Moore is not stupid.

    Billy Beane is.

    DeJesus is going to make six million next year, which is a bargain even for a cheapass organization like Kansas City.

    DeJesus comes back healthy and rakes like he did this year, the Royals could flip him at the deadline for a helluva lot more than Vin Mazzaro and his designated luggage carrier.

    I’m thinking the early returns on DeJesus’ injury/recovery aren’t good, and Moore found his PT Barnum in Beane.

  135. Cameron Says:

    You say DeJesus could disappoint post-injury, I say even a hurt DeJesus could’ve gotten us better than Vin Freakin’ Mazzarro. If we would’ve asked for Gio and/or Braden, then maybe I could understand, but Mazzarro and a warm body? I’m sorry, the dumbass on this trade is (as usual) Moore.

  136. Chuck Says:

    Don’t worry, Cam.

    At least he hasn’t traded Hosmer to open up first base for Kila.

  137. Cameron Says:

    I already predicted Greinke to the Mets for Castillo and Perez, you’re gonna have to try really hard to one-up that prediction of doom.

  138. Cameron Says:

    Not surprising, the Angels are prepared to break the bank when it comes to signing Crawford. I see them doing it and having an outfield of Crawford-Bourjous-Hunter.

    …Yeah, not a damn ball hits the ground in that outfield.

  139. John Says:


    I would agree with your assessment on Castro. And I’m glad we’re debating baseball again.

    ARod’s still a productive thirdbaseman. He’ll stick around longer than you think, even though he’ll be a DH sooner than most people think. You’re right – Jeter will never be a worse deal than Burnett.

    I do have a problem with paying guys based on what they did – but perhaps that comes from being a Packer fan during the Favre saga.

    I think Chuck’s probably closer to right about Montero’s defense than BA.

    Why? Jorge Posada still gets behind the dish more often than never. If Montero could catch worth a damn, he would be in the show by now.

    Cliff Lee’s gonna be overpaid no matter what…so it’ll probably be by the Yankees. Not sure what catcher chucks hoping to buy…unless Lee’s deal is enough to build a time machine to bring back Johnny Bench from 1969.

  140. Raul Says:

    Moore could have gotten more for DeJesus, but now that I think about it, you’re looking at a decent player who’s unlikely to really break out into a stud at the age of 31, coming off injury.

    DeJesus isn’t a power threat, he isn’t a speed threat, and he’s not a doubles machine. Better to sell early than late, I suppose.

    In the event that Mazzaro could be a reliable #4….hell why not?

  141. Raul Says:

    Fuck it.

    Say Montero’s not as good a catcher as Posada. He certainly figures to be a better offensive player than Posada. The shit is negated, and probably offers an overall upgrade.

    Catcher is an important position. It’s not like Left Field. But like Chuck said earlier this year about Brett Gardner….if the Yankees suck in 2011, it’s not going to be due to Jesus Montero.

  142. brautigan Says:

    I’m not sure why everyone is down on the Kansas City trade. DeJesus is 31 on opening day and he’s not going to get any younger. Do you think in 2 or 3 years he is going to be helping the Royals? I don’t. Mazzaro has a good chance to be a decent #4 starter, especially if he starts inducing ground balls again, and in the big scheme of things, having a good #4 starter is a luxury.

  143. Cameron Says:

    …A good #4 starter. You pretty much said it yourself. We gave up one of the better RF in the league for, at best, a #4 starter. We could’ve easily gotten more for DeJesus. Easily.

  144. brautigan Says:

    Ok, Cameron, I’ll bite. Who is going to go after a 31 year old OF that had his career year (a short one due to the thumb injury, who knows if his numbers would have evened out), coming off of a thumb injury and makes $4.7 million a year? What are you going to get for him?

  145. Cameron Says:

    I’d have used either Braden or Gonzalez as a starting point. DeJesus is still a good contact hitter who can cover ground in the outfield fairly well. Braden and Gonzalez are most likely #3 starters and that’s something I would’ve gone for. It’s not that I think DeJesus is worth that much, I just don’t think Mazzarro’s that good. At all.

  146. Raul Says:

    On the bright side, the Royals saved some money by trading him.
    David DeJesus is scheduled to make 6 million dollars in 2011.

    By the way, why the hell does it say Joe DelGrippo sponsors Vin Mazzaro’s baseball-reference page?

  147. Chuck Says:

    “By the way, why the hell does it say Joe DelGrippo sponsors Vin Mazzaro’s baseball-reference page?”

    Joe sponsors alot of BR pages.

  148. Raul Says:

    I think Joe could sponsor a Happy Hour next week or something.

  149. Chuck Says:

    The Royals traded a 31 year old All-Star outfielder for a guy who MIGHT someday be a #4 starter?

    Something’s not right.

  150. Chuck Says:

    Joe was in Arizona last week watching AFL games. We got to hang out a bit.

    He’s a good guy.

    He has a tendency to over-value some of the players in the Yankees farm system and has an unnatural obsession to the abilities of Brett Gardner, but it was nice hanging with someone with his passion for the game in general.

  151. Raul Says:

    The next off-season, the following players could be free agents

    Albert Pujols
    Ryan Howard
    Prince Fielder
    Adrian Gonzalez
    Robinson Cano
    Brandon Phillips
    Ricky Weeks
    Dan Uggla
    Jose Bautista
    Cory Hart
    Grady Sizemore

  152. Raul Says:

    Yeah Joe’s a good guy. He sent me an interview he did with Slade Heathcott. Good stuff.

    Hey, Chuck…you’ve been around the block.
    Lately I’m been going more whiskey/bourbon than beer. Know any good whiskeys?

  153. Chuck Says:

    Might as well start at the top and go with Crown Royal.

    I like Jameson’s, 1792, Jack Daniel’s Special Reserve.

    Hard liquor, though, is no different than beer in that what you like goes to your own palate.

    Go to a local bar and take a taste test, do a half dozen or so shots of different types, sucking on a lemon wedge in between to clean your tastebuds.

    It’s alot cheaper than running to the local store and dropping $25 bucks on something you end up giving to your neighbor or pouring down the sink.

  154. Jim Says:

    Raul – Woodford Reserve, a great bourbon.

  155. Chuck Says:


  156. Cameron Says:

    Let’s take a look after contract extensions are negotiated though.

    Prince Fielder
    Adrian Gonzalez
    Jose Bautista*
    Cory Hart*
    Grady Sizemore

    The *s are maybes, and Dan Uggla might be there, but no FA class is ever gonna be THAT stacked.

  157. Chuck Says:

    Howard’s not a free agent.

  158. Chuck Says:

    Joey Votto got screwed again.

    Pujols Silver Slugger?


  159. John Says:

    Neither is Hart, he signed a contract extension this year through 2013.

  160. John Says:

    Votto would’ve been my pick too, and he should also win the MVP…

    But it’s not that bad a pick. Votto’s rate stats are slightly better, but Pujols beats him out in HR and RBI.

    Like I said though…I would’ve gone with Votto.

  161. Chuck Says:

    Beltre over Longoria is a joke too.

  162. John Says:

    Beltre: .321/.365/.553, 141 OPS+, 49 2B, 28 HR, 102 RBI, 326 TB
    Longoria: .294/.372/.507, 142 OPS+, 46 2B, 22 HR, 104 RBI, 291 TB

    How exactly is that a joke? It’s basically a toss-up.

  163. Chuck Says:

    Longoria should have won it.

    It’s up to you to decide whether or not it’s a joke.

    Apparently, you don’t.

    Which is cool.

  164. John Says:

    I feel like this is some kind of a bizzaro world, where Chuck is looking at WAR (Longoria beat Beltre 6.2 to 5.5 in oWAR).

    Looking at Beltre’s home/away splits (he was actually better away from Fenway), I’d say that he was the right call.

    Ryan Braun is my favorite player, but I think his silver slugger should’ve gone to Werth, or possibly teammate Corey Hart.

  165. Chuck Says:

    The world is definitely “bizarro”, but not THAT much for me to look at WAR other than cursory.

    Out of Braun, Hart and Werth I really don’t care who won, because I don’t like any of them.

  166. Raul Says:

    I could care less about the Silver Slugger award.

  167. Cameron Says:

    My actual vote was for Votto, but note I picked Pujols to prove that the winner of the Hank Aaron Award, supposedly the best hitter in the league, wasn’t voted the best hitter at his position.

    I did it to prove that voters are dumbasses, and I was proven right.

  168. Cameron Says:

    And I got… 6 wrong, not bad for a total of 18. I even got the pitcher right, and I couldn’t give two shits about how well a pitcher hits.

  169. Raul Says:

    The perception is that pitchers now aren’t nearly as good as they were 50 years ago. The stats (I think) show that pitchers hit about the same.

    It sure SEEMS like pitchers today can’t hit as good as they used to.

  170. Cameron Says:

    All I know is if a pitcher hits too well, he sometimes ends up converted if his stuff never works. Rick Ankiel, Adam Loewen, etc. If he’s on the mound, I expect him to suck dick while at the plate.

  171. Raul Says:


  172. Cameron Says:

    Looking at all the NL MVP debates, I’m kinda sad that all the debate is between Votto and Pujols. To me, It’s Carlos Gonzalez. It’s a pretty close comparison in triple crown and slash triple crown stats for the three…

    Triple Crown (Avg/HR/RBI)

    Pujols: .312 (6th)/42 (1st)/118 (1st)
    Votto: .324 (2nd)/37 (3rd)/113 (3rd)
    Gonzalez: .336 (1st)/34 (4th)/117 (2nd)

    Slash Crown (Avg/OBP/SLG)

    Pujols: .312 (6th)/.414 (2nd)/.596 (3rd)
    Votto: .324 (2nd)/.424 (1st)/.600 (1st)
    Gonzalez: .336 (1st)/.376 (below 10th)/.598 (2nd)

    From a PURELY OFFENSIVE standpoint, I’d give it to Votto. He was 12 points off from a slash triple crown and had the most well-rounded year of the three (with Pujols low average and Gonzalez’s low OBP), but…

    The MVP goes to the best player in the league, and the game isn’t just played with bats (shit, even DH’s run), which makes the contest swing in Gonzalez’s favor by a pretty wide margin in my eyes. I see some of the more complicated defensive formulas show him as a negative defender, but they showed the same of Junior and Torii Hunter. What I DO see is that all year, he only dropped one ball on an error. The supposed best defensive OF (Michael Bourn) dropped 3. I say Bourn’s better at tracking balls than CarGo and has to do it in a bigger field, but Gonzalez was a damn good defender this year and earned his Gold Glove. I know Pujols won one too and Votto wasn’t half bad, but c’mon even at 63 games in left, 58 in center, and 40 in right, they’re still ALL more valuable defensively than combining all those and sticking it at first base.

    That and accounting for all five of the tools, we have Pujols winning by power, and CarGo by… Well, everything else. Better defense, batting champ, and 26 stolen bases compared to the 16 and 14 by Votto and Pujols.

    …I’ll let the fact that Joey Votto and Albert Pujols (not even stealing a career high) stole 16 and 14…

    Back to the normal world, Votto has the better bat, Pujols has the name value, but Gonzalez was the BEST OVERALL and therefore, Most Valuable Player.

    PS: Yes, I know no one brought this up, but I couldn’t sleep and was kinda bored.

  173. Cameron Says:

    And by that token, I say Josh Hamilton for AL MVP. Though not even really by the CarGo argument as I think Hamilton’s season was slightly better than Cabrera’s offensively, though he was gone a month or so with injuries.

    In all honesty though, anybody could win and I could say they deserved it. Close races all around this year. Just my two cents is Hamilton and CarGo.

  174. Chuck Says:

    I think the voter’s will take the easy way out and give it to Pujols.

    I look at their stats and overall Votto had a better year than Gonzalez.

    I think Gonzalez may lose some votes to Tulowitzki and Pujols may lose some to Matt Holliday.

    The fact Votto was the only one to make the postseason and two of his closest competitors played in the same division and didn’t make it SHOULD sway the vote to Votto.

    At least it does for me.

  175. Cameron Says:

    I dunno, it’s so close that CarGo wins by defense and speed edging a competitive bat, and it’s a pretty close race. Again, any of the three could win it and I could say they would deserve it. Pujols wins off the counting stats, Votto wins off the advanced stats, CarGo wins by playing the best ball on the field.

  176. Chuck Says:

    Gonzalez’ GG is as deserved as Jeter’s.

    Corner OF is not much more demanding than first base, and neither Votto or Pujols suck.

    Neither are Mark Teixeira or Adrian Gonzalez, but neither are they Ryan Howard or Adam Dunn.

    There are at least three worthy NL candidates, but I don’t think it should be close, either.

    I’d vote Votto without hesitation.

    I will hesitate on my AL vote.

  177. Cameron Says:

    I’d say CarGo by token of the best player on the field, but yeah, NL is tough. And Cabrera and Hamilton in the AL is really a coin flip. The key to that is how that missed month of Hamilton’s production will look in the eyes of the voters. Hamilton looked slightly better with the bat, but in 75 or so PA less.

  178. Mike Felber Says:

    CarGo may very well have been the best all around. But I would not go by a small difference in errors. Even a large FP % distinction is often far less meaningful than range. 1st, the scoring is often arbitrary. 2nd, the difference in how many balls someone got to is usually somewhat larger than the error difference. And that not only accounts for some errors, but saves hits, sometimes XBH.

    yes, advanced fielding metrics can be flawed. But that neither means none of them have much value, nor absolves us from analyzing what a guy’s range is. In OF, there is less chance that a nearby fielder will take plays from you. We can check how many balls are catchable many ways, but clearly there are many flaws-which can only be resolved by looking at good statistics-in just observing.

  179. John Says:

    CarGo’s road stats: .289/.322/.453, 8 HR, 41 RBI (118 sOPS+)

    He’s not the MVP.

    He’s not like Dante Bichette-bad away from Coor’s Field, but he’s basically what a Coor’s Field product looks like post-humidor. He was a little above average for an OFer on the road, God-like at home and probably deserves around a 3rd place MVP vote. But cmon. In half his games, he was basically Andres Torres with the bat.

    Compare that to Joey Votto:

    .297/.394/.556 at home
    .349/.452/.641 on the road.

    Or Pujols:

    .335/.439/.594 at home
    .291/.392/.599 on the road

    Also, side note: CarGo took Matt Holliday’s number after being traded for him. Nice move.

  180. Cameron Says:

    I know, but I distrust pretty much every fielding statistic since I… Well, don’t understand what goes into them or why it has to be so complicated. I’m just saying what I saw, 3 dropped balls and plenty of catches that were pretty jaw-dropping. I know, and even admit that by the numbers he’s not the best in the league, I’m saying he’s the best from what I’ve seen on the field. He, to me, is about an anti-stat favorite as I’ve gotten about a player.

  181. Chuck Says:

    What I get from John in post #178 is what most baseball people feel.

    The humidor don’t mean shit.

  182. Chuck Says:

    The Dbacks traded Gonzalez because he was a head case.

    If you play 1200 innings a season in the field there are going to be times where you make a SportsCenter play…whether you’re a gold glover or Adam Dunn.

    I’ve seen Carlos Gonzalez dog it in the outfield where he jogs or walks after balls that have gotten by him..including this year.

    I’m sorry, but Derek Jeter deserved his Gold Glove more than Gonzalez deserved his.

  183. John Says:


    My theory on Coors Field has always been sort of along these lines:

    – They designed it to be huge so as to limit the number of homeruns (the most valuable single play in baseball by a wide margin). But homeruns were still cranked out of that place at a record pace.
    – They installed the humidor. Now homeruns are cranked out at about an average pace.
    – Usually, bigger ballparks like Safeco, Petco, OACC etc favor pitchers in large part because they give up fewer homeruns (and homeruns are the most valuable play in baseball by a wide margin)
    – But Coors Field gives up about the same as a normal ballpark. But unlike a normal ballpark, it’s huge. That means the OFers have to cover more room (so more runs drop in). This is true in other pitcher parks, but there are way fewer homeruns given up in those parks than at Coors.

    Meaning that the humidor worked at limiting the number of homeruns…but now it’s still a hitter’s park, but for different reasons.

    Based on park factor (incomplete, but pretty good nonetheless), Coor’s Field was at 129 in 2000. This year it was 115. So it’s still the most hitter-friendly park in the game, but not as batshit crazy as it was pre-humidor.

  184. Chuck Says:

    If I had a draft eligible son and he was picked by the Rockies I wouldn’t let him sign, and I don’t care how much money they offered.

    No one will take your career seriously, no matter how good a player you are.

    Coors Field was a steriod to Helton, Walker, Castilla, and Bichette, whether they actually took them or not.

    The biggest mistake Todd Helton made was not waving his no trade in ’06 and going to Boston. He could have had a handful of decent seasons there and legitimized his career and MAYBE given himself a solid chance at the HOF.

    Now, he has no chance, because everyone with two eyes knows while Helton was a good player, he wasn’t THAT good.

  185. JohnBowen Says:

    “Now, he has no chance, because everyone with two eyes knows while Helton was a good player, he wasn’t THAT good.”

    The thing about that was he was a very good (though not quite HOF-worthy) road player. But he’s going to be grouped with Bichette and Castilla (who couldn’t hit worth a damn on the road).

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