Tag Archives: Adrian Gonzalez

Would You Rather?

Last week, Dan put up a post with his pre-season all-AL West team.  Matthew, in the comments, alluded to the lack of star power in the division.  When you look at the list Dan has assembled (which I think is pretty accurate, especially the first team) the amount of stars on the team are a bit underwhelming.

With that in mind, I thought I’d compare Dan’s list to the best players in the AL East (which is the strongest division in my opinion).  These are all my opinions and I’ve based them on prior season stats, sabermetrics, and potential.  I choose to just assemble a first team for both divisions because the topic is star power, not depth.

1st Base
AL West:  Kendry Morales, LAA
AL East:  Adrian Gonzalez, BOS
The Winner:  Gonzalez (AL East)

Overview: I’m pretty high on Morales, I think he is vastly underrated, but Adrian Gonzalez is one of the top players in the game.  Gonzalez edges out Teixeira for the 1st baseman in his division.  Teixeira would be a first teamer in the AL West.

2nd Base
AL West:  Ian Kinsler, TEX
AL East:  Robinson Cano,  NYY
The Winner:  Cano (AL East)

Overview: This one’s a fairly obvious choice also.  Kinsler is a good player, and is an all-star when completely healthy, but Cano is the best 2nd baseman in the league (edging out Utley).  Cano posted a 6.4 WAR in 2010 (he hit .319 with 29 homers while playing decent defense).  Kinsler can post similar offensive numbers when healthy but he’s only played over 130 games once in his career.  Cano has played 159 or more the last 4 seasons.  Maybe in a couple years we’ll be seeing how Ackley stacks up against Cano.  Here’s to hoping.  A healthy Pedroia enters into this conversation, also.

Short-Stop
AL West:  Elvis Andrus, TEX
AL East:  Yunel Escobar, TOR
The Winner:  Andrus (AL West)

Overview: I might take some heat for putting Escobar over Jeter but I put him there because Jeter is one of the worst defensive short-stops in the league, while Escobar is pretty sharp.  The AL East is pretty weak at short-stop and Andrus wins this one easily, based on potential alone.  Both Escobar and Jeter put up WAR’s in the 2’s last year and Andrus put up a WAR of 1.5.  But, if I had to choose one of those 3 players to be on my team this year, I’d take Andrus without question.  His bat will continue to get better, while his defense is superb (unless he has a Yuniesky-type flop).  J.J. Hardy could also sneak into the picture for the East.

3rd Base
AL West:  Adrian Beltre, TEX
AL East:  Evan Longoria, TB

The Winner:  Longoria (AL East)

Overview: The East shows their dominance in this position.  They have Longoria (a top-5 player in the league), A-Rod (a future hall-of-famer, who’s put up at least 30 HR’s and 100 RBI’s each of the last 7 seasons), and Kevin Youkilis (who’s more annoying than A-Rod, but just as effective) who each have a strong case to be picked over Beltre.  I love Adrian, he’s one of my favorite players in baseball, but Longoria wins this one easily.

The rest of the positions after the jump.  Continue reading

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Mariners Recap — 5/21/2010

Mmm, 15 runs, it always goes down smooth. Beating up on San Diego brings to mind many Anchor Man quotes, but I’ll try and resist. First off, Sween Dog and Bard were fun to watch and cheer for last night. That is a scientific fact! Ok, I’ll stop with the Anchor Man fun. But really, who could have ever guessed those 2 vets could rack up 6 hits, 16 total bases, 3 home runs, and 9 RBI, in one game! Get used to seeing Bard behind the plate, because he has surpassed Hips and Moore’s combined performances in about 5 games.

This game was littered with statistical oddities, which is typical for a game where the teams combine for 30 hits and 23 runs. Baseball is a funny sport. The M’s scored 12 runs in 8 games between April 30th, and May 8th, a 78 inning stretch. Last night they scored 13 runs in 4 innings. Of course, they weren’t facing Wade LeBlanc during any of those abysmal 78 innings. I don’t understand how LeBlanc is good but I guess it helps pitching in the NL. It is also fun to look at how batting averages can change from one game to the next, when 15 hits are collected. The first number is the player’s average prior to the game, the second number is the new current average-

Sweeney- .226, .276
Bradley- .221, .244
Bard- .333, .400
Wilson- .239, .255

Here are a few more notes and hero/goat-

  • Milton Bradley had a great game. He worked the count, and his 3 hits were all stung. I could see him having a great rest of the year.
  • 347 pitches were thrown between both teams. I think that’s a lot.
  • I doubt Cliff Lee ever gets another win in a Mariners uniform when giving up 7 earned runs. But that’s what happened last night. Cliff didn’t have his best stuff, but even still, he didn’t walk a guy. His control is ridiculous.
  • The Padres didn’t draw a walk, and the Mariners scored 15 runs, but it was San Diego that had 3 more at-bats. Is this weird? I don’t know. I’m not sure why I’m typing this.

    Hero: Mike Sweeney and Josh Bard. Gotta go with co-heroes in this one. Those two were monsters last night.
    Goat: Jose Lopez. Lost in the fun and hugs from last night is the 0-5 night Lopey had. His defense has been great and with so many others struggling at the plate, Jose has flown under the radar. It’s tough to imagine Lopez gets anywhere near his 25 HR, 96 RBI from last year.

    Finally, if you didn’t read the live blog that Jeff Sullivan was doing over at LL, it is worth a read. I have pasted a few of my favorite lines. That dude is funny, and between the humor he recaps the game nicely too. Check that out after the jump! Continue reading

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    The Good Guy’s 2010 MLB Predictions


    More predictions after the jump!
    Continue reading

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    3 Topics (but none deserving a full post)

    Here’s your 3 for 1 special. 3 topics of food for thought, minus the food. Enjoy.

    Ackley for A-Gon
    A couple days ago on 710 ESPN, Kevin Calabro was making his argument for an Adrian Gonzalez to Seattle trade. His case was that this team plus Adrian Gonzalez would be an American League favorite to make the World Series, and likely a contender next year as well. The price is never too high for glory days like Calabro was painting, and no one could disagree with the excitement that A-Gon in Seattle would bring. But while most of us talk about a package including the likes of Saunders, Carp, Lopez, Fields, Halman, Triunfel, French, Matthew Long…Calabro says give em’ Dustin Ackley if that’s what it takes. At first, it sounds ridiculous, but the more I think about it, the more intrigued I am. Here’s why.

    In Ackley, you get high upside (he was the #2 pick overall last year) and the potential down the road of say, Chase Utley at 2nd base. He is also under team control for 4-6 more years. In Gonzalez, you get a stud, who has already reached the potential we can only dream that Ackley may achieve. But he is only under team control for 2 more years. Money is not much of a factor because Gonzalez will only make $10.25MM from 2010-11. What is a factor is the value over replacement that Ackley and Gonzalez may provide. Ackley might be the starting 2nd baseman in 2011, and that’s probably an upgrade over Lopez. The same can be said for Gonzalez over Kotchman at first base. But just how big would the upgrade be this year, when essentially all the stars would be aligned to go for it with the Cliff Lee and A-Gon additions? Here’s what CHONE projections say.

    ’10 Dustin Ackley- minor leagues, +0 WAR
    ’10 Jose Lopez- 19 hr, 89 rbi, .283 avg, +2.6 WAR
    ’10 Adrian Gonzalez- 33 hr, 98 rbi, .280 avg, +4.2 WAR
    ’10 Casey Kotchman- 10 hr, 58 rbi, .265 avg, +0.9 WAR

    In 2010, Ackley won’t be a factor, so losing him, at least for this season, is not going to impact the wins total. In future years, his value will likely only increase. A-Gon could add 23 hr, 40 rbi, and about 3.3 wins more than Kotchman, and both play terrific defense. Is that enough to enter “go for it” mode and give up Ackley? Probably not, but whose to say Gonzalez wouldn’t re-sign and stay in Seattle just as long as Ackley would? And what if Ackley doesn’t develop and reach his potential? In Gonzalez, you have a player who already has reached his potential.

    Ultimately, there are too many unknowns to pull the trigger on this deal, though I’d bet San Diego would take a deal that included Ackley. If we knew Cliff Lee would be in Seattle next year as well, then maybe you risk it all to have 2 years of win-now baseball. But Lee past this year is no guarantee, and Ackley in the next five years is too enticing to trade for what may only be two years of Gonzalez. The Mariners aren’t quite into full win-now mode so mortgaging the future with the team’s top prospect would not be wise. But come mid-July if a bidding war is on for Gonzalez and the M’s, sitting atop the AL West, don’t have a package to make the deal, maybe Ackley becomes realistic bait.

    What if…
    I love day dreaming about “what if” scenarios related to my Seattle sports teams. In my mind there are two types of “what if” questions; negative outcome and positive outcome. The negative scenarios seem to stick with me longer. What if Howard Schultz had sold the team to a Seattle group stead of the Okies? What if a couple penalties went our way in Super Bowl 40? What if the Seahawks had kept Hutch. What if the Mariners had drafted Lincicum over Morrow? What if Holmgren, Leiweke and Paul Allen had gotten along? Of course there are positive “what if” scenarios too, where knowing the eventual outcome makes me smile. What if Ichiro had ended up with Los Angeles? What if the ’95 team never made their August push, would baseball be in Seattle today?

    The two scenarios I can’t seem to get over are both “what if” questions regarding the Mariner’s 2008 season. What if Bavasi hadn’t made the Bedard trade? And what if the Mariners hadn’t swept Oakland to end the year? My theory is that if Bedard had not been acquired, the team would have likely still sucked, because Adam Jones, Chris Tillman and George Sherrill weren’t going to make up for many more wins than Bedard provided in ’08. And if we had not swept the A’s to end the year, we would have had the #1 pick in ’09, and Stephen Strasburg would be a Mariner today. Based on these two scenarios, our rotation going forward for at least the next 3 years would have likely been Felix, Strasburg, and Chris Tillman. Wow.

    NHL vs. NBA
    If I had it my way, Seattle would have the NHL, NBA, and a regular PGA tour stop. As it is, we have none. In the future, I think we will have one or two of these, and I’m beginning to want the NHL more than the others. My wife is a huge Red Wings fan, so I’ve watched more hockey since getting married 3 years ago than I did the previous 20 years. Playoff hockey is amazing. So is Olympic hockey, like the world just saw. A new arena is necessary for the NHL or NBA, so this dream is still years away, but similar to how the Sounders have been received, I think a hockey team would be a sell-out machine as well. In my opinion, it’s more entertaining than the NBA, and while a new arena could bring both leagues back to Seattle, I’d rather have hockey. Build an arena, and there would be 5 or 6 teams, Phoenix, Nashville, Florida, Tampa bay, Atlanta, to name a few, fighting to get to Seattle first.

    -Dan

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