Vernon Wells played with a bum shoulder last season and posted an OPS+ of 85 while Rolen weighed in at 89; however Wells put up his numbers against teams like the Yankees and Red Sox while Rolen worked in a division where 85 wins was tops.
Bottom line, it’ll likely improve the defense but defense wasn’t the problem in 2007. If J.P. Ricciardi wants to deal with the Cards, couldn’t he at least try to land Pujols? I mean, the odds on a deal like that are about the same as the Leafs winning the Stanley Cup this year so, um…
When it Raines…
I’d like to thank the following for promoting Tim Raines - Hall of Fame, 2008: Bob Elliot of the Toronto Sun, Rob Neyer of ESPN and King Kaufman of Salon--we’ve got to get the word out on Raines. It looks like we still have some work to do.
Suffice it to say I had a lot to write about (Don’t I always?) regarding the vote both at MSN Canada (Baseball Hall of Fame voting: Tim Raines was robbed) and The Hardball Times. Since I’m still bellyaching about Raines, let’s take a quick look at the following:
Player TOB* OPS+ RCAA RCAP SB SB% RP**
Tim Raines 3977 123 516 392 808 84 2381
Tony Gwynn 3955 132 504 402 319 71 2386
Lou Brock 3833 109 223 56 938 75 2361
Roberto Clemente 3656 130 409 247 83 64 2481
*Times On Base
Here is a smattering of stats both traditional and sabermetric. All of these players spent significant time as corner outfielders. Three of these players are in the Hall of Fame--except Raines. Three of these players are members of the 3000 hit club--except Raines. Despite being last in at bats among the grouping (by 416 AB behind third place Gwynn) Raines is tops among the four in times on base, RCAA, stolen base percentage, second in stolen bases and RCAP and third Runs Produced (by five runs).
Suffice it say Raines is not the worst of the quartet. Three of them are first ballot Hall of Famers. Raines didn’t get 25% of the vote.
I haven’t posted my THT columns for the last few weeks. Here is what you missed (lucky you):
- Buck Weaver Lives: many players have ‘guilty knowledge’ regarding the steroid scandal. They have been asked to come forward with what they knew and refused to do so--how should we view these modern day Weavers in light of the Hall of Fame?
- Exorcising the ghosts of 2007…: A post mortem on the 2007 debates regarding the Jays’ offensive philosophy. Believe it or not, I generally support the sabermetric approach. However, I’m not dogmatic about it, there are exceptions to every rule and I felt the 2007 Jays were that rare exception insofar as bunting would have improved the Jays’ offense. Bottom line--nobody changed the other’s mind but it was a fun and educational debate.
- The Pujols Awards: week one: The first instalment of a new THT reader-interactive feature where we honour the heroes and zeros of a given week. Since it’s early in 2008, we’ve included some notable from the 2007 season.
I would like to dedicate the following to the good folks at Drunk Jays Fans. I will do the following stunt with only one hand (the other currently being occupied with my golden retriever, and no, that’s not a euphemism for something else--get your minds out of the gutter).
Wait for it…
This is the genuine article…
(Don’t try this on your own blog kids--I’m a professional)
Countdown: 10 … 9 … 8 … (cracks knuckles against cheek) 7 … 6 … 5 … (twists neck until satisfying pop is heard) 4 … 3 … (deep breath, close eyes and finds center, slowly exhales) 2 … 1 …
Thank yuh, thank yuh very much.