Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Graphic Failure

Some of you may remember a post I did before the 2008 season. OK, I don’t really expect anyone to remember, but trust me on this – the post was about how I thought it was reasonable to expect Ray Durham to improve from a crappy 2007 season. Here are some of his numbers: 2007 - obp .295, slg .343; 2008 (w/Giants) – obp .385, slg .414. Not surprising to see someone rebound to something approaching his lifetime stats (.352 obp and .436 slg) from such a significant drop off. I argued that, although Ray was near the end of his career, there was probably more uncertainty in the stats for a player near the end of his career than for one near the middle, and a rebound could reasonably be expected.

But this is not about Ray, it is about Edgar. Edgar the Warrior. Here is his production in obp and slg, with the yearly averages and two-year moving averages. I also have three-year moving averages, but it looks less elegant and they show the same thing.

Note how the graphs take a nose dive in the past couple of years. Unlike a one-year aberration, this convinces me that there is a trend here, and I especially don't like the way that the slugging and obp lines converge. So I have a proposal. Trade Edgar, even if it means paying part of his salary. He is due a cool 9 million simoleans next year, and if you pick up half, get someone in return (backup catcher, maybe?) you save 4.5 million and can have a more productive infield. I'm thinking Uribe at shortstop, Sanchez at second. I know that a lot of folks don't like Sanchez, but I think he can contribute significantly. I think Uribe has earned a place on the team. Edgar is a bit younger than Ray Durham was in 2007, but they both have had similar years in the bigs (13 for Edgar so far, 14 for Ray). If Edgar was, as reported, injured, I could be convinced that he could improve, just not enough to buck the trend. If you want this team to improve (and I just don't see that many ways to do it without trading away the kind of pitching that we don't want to lose) then you have to do something, like eating salary. Take a big bite - yum!


M.C. O'Connor said...

Someone, of course, will have to WANT Edgar Renteria. And they'll probably--if they are smart--ask for almost all the salary relief. He's grossly overpaid, of course, but that's the Giants. There are a LOT of FA SS out there! I think that lowers Edgar's value and desirability quite a bit. Of course, the Pirates took a clearly-done Matt Morris off our hands, so it is possible some dumbshit outfit will do the same on Renteria. (Did you know that the Braves got JAIR JURRJENS from the Tigers when they traded Renteria? Such a deal.)

Juan Uribe was very valuable last year, but I cannot believe it is sustainable. His lifetime slash line is .257/.298/.430 with an OPS+ of 83. His wOBA of .351 was 40 points over his career mark of .311! I think if he were our everyday shortstop we'd get damn sick of his free-swinging ways. He thrived as a sort of super-sub, plus he had a lot to prove, signing a minor-league deal and all. FSanchez, with his injury history, will need relief at second. Edgar, with his history of suckitude, will need to be spelled at SS. Pablo will wind up at 1B a fair bit--Uribe has shown he can handle the "hot corner" marginally well. I like his versatility, and his pop off the bench. I think we'd be making a mistake to change what we expect from him.

Zo said...

It would also leave room for some back up players to substitute like Rohlinger and Frandsen. If by some miracle they can get hot and take a job away from someone - hey, we're better off for it.

M.C. O'Connor said...

I'd love to see what Rohlinger can do. Frandsen has failed to impress, I don't expect much more than a token spring training invite. The GM made an effort to protect Rental from criticism, I don't imagine they'll move him. He's our guy, I think, like it our not. Maybe he can get in shape over the off-season and be a little more productive next year.

Ron said...

Walk, Walk, 3-run HR ... that's how to bury the dodgers. Nicely, done Phillies (the anti-Giants, on offense anyway). And, the bomb was by one of baseball's unsung production specialists & all around great guys.

Ron said...

The fall guy speaks. I actually feel badly for him. It's especially difficult to fathom that someone like Righetti, who has presided over both horrible & excellent pitching staffs (i.e. perhaps his influence is marginal) gets re-hired year after year, but Lansford gets the boot, when Alou/Bochy/Sabean assembled this group of free swingers who don't listen to instruction:

"It's no secret it was a team of free swingers, which is a very frustrating thing. That's hard to change. As I told Boch yesterday, you can get by with one or two guys like that in the lineup, but you can't have a lineup full of guys like that. It didn't work. I guess I have to take the fall for that. I did the best I possibly could with what I had. Everybody knew going into this season that we were going to be an offensively challenged ballclub. The fact that even with the offensive challenges we stayed in the wild card until the last week or 10 days was an incredible achievement, I thought."

M.C. O'Connor said...

You have to love the Phillies beating the LAtriners in the Latrine. Keep it up!!!!! Now imagine the Giants having those two weapons: walks (OBA) and HRs. Wow, scary.

Carney Lansford got the boot--that'll shake things up, eh? Same GM, same manager, same bow-tied bureaucrat, same lack of hitting talent. But hey, fire the batting coach that's the reason we couldn't hit for shit. Can you say "token fall guy"?

Bob said...

Good riddance to Lansford. No member of the '89 As ever had any business being part of the Giants.
I bet Pablo would do a better job at shortstop than any of the guys you've named yet, although I could live with Uribe based on what I've seen so far.
Go Phillies!

Zo said...

You can read much more of what Lansford had to say on Andrew Baggarly's blog: He sounds bitter and pissed, although he makes it a point to say otherwise.