Evaluating the DHs

A very Peanuts open thread
Marlins firmly asked to spend more on players

This off-season, the Yankees, Angels and Rangers all landed themselves shiny new injury-prone but solid-hitting guys to man the DH spot. The Yanks picked up Nick Johnson and his .426 OBP, the Angels Hideki Matsui and his World Series MVP award and the Rangers Vlad Guerrero and his ability to hit any pitch. The Yanks like their guy because of his on-base prowess. He’ll hit second and give Mark Teixeira and A-Rod numerous opportunities to drive home runs. But what of the other two? Yesterday, Jay Gargiulo at Fack Youk analyzed the DH signings and came out a bit bearish on Vlad and Matsui. I predict, not too boldly, that the best one of the three will be whichever avoids the disabled list the longest this year.

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A very Peanuts open thread
Marlins firmly asked to spend more on players
  • Crazy Eyes Killa

    Are we just not even a little concerned with NJ’s baserunning at this point? His mobility will be crucial to the top of the order, Tex and A-Rod are not going to hit everything out of the park, and if Johnson is gonna be livin off of cheessteaks and butts again this year, Girardi could consider other possibilities with the 2 hole

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

      Yeah, he’s slow as shit, but the impact will be so insignificant in the grand scheme of things, it’s almost irrelevant. Give the disparity in OBP, it’s not a concern.

      • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Archimedes Torquemada

        Further mitigating his lack of speed: With Tex-ARod-Posada and some ordering of Granderson/Cano/Swish hitting behind him, he won’t have any need or opportunity to run. And, if his limited speed keeps him from advancing extra bases, well, he’ll need guys behind him who are good at hitting XBH to allow him to jog in on well-struck balls… guys like Tex-ARod-Posada-Granderson-Cano-Swish.

    • RollingWave

      Anyone that seen Hideki Matsui and Vlad play last year can not possibly complain about the speed of another player that’s in a similar role. those two were barely walking .

      Also, this is the top 10 career run scorer of the MLB history

      1.Henderson
      2.Cobbs
      3.Bonds
      4.Aaron
      5.Ruth
      6.Rose
      7.Mays
      8.Anson
      9.Musial
      10.Gehrig.

      on that list, Aaron had only somewhat above average speed . Ruth / Gehrig / Musial were basically statues, and Rose was REALLY slow for a guy that started as a middle infielder. some of them are fast guys to be sure. but as you can see the correlation between speed and run scoring ins’t really that high. but the lowest OBA guy on the list was Rose at .375 , and adjust for how long he played that’s insanely scary .

      Speed matters. but in the grand scheme of things a guy with no pop will kill you, a guy who can’t get on base at all should not play even in the minor leagues, but guys who can’t run at all get in the hall of fame ALL THE TIME.

      (just think for a sec, 80 stole bases’s value still < 20 HR, and yet how many player actually manage to consistently steal 80? no one, NEVER, not a single player, even Ricky only did it 6 times and came close on a 7th, and he's miles ahead of everyone else, yet tons of average players hit 20 HR.)

  • http://www.retire21.org Mike R. – Retire 21

    I think Vlad is in the best position to succeed because of the move to full-time DH and playing in Arlington 80 times a year.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

      I actually think NJ’s in a better spot to succeed. He’s younger, has a far superior lineup around him, and he’s playing in a great hitter’s park.

      Vlad’s bat was noticeably slow last year. He just can’t hit good fastballs anymore.

      • Charlie

        its a great home run park for left handed hitters, not a great hitter’s park
        /nitpicking’d

      • Tom Zig

        He has less knees than Matsui. It truly is the most awkward thing ever watching Vlad run.

        • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

          It’s like watching a giraffe run.

          • Hughesus Cristo

            Giraffes run 35 mph!

      • r.w.g.

        I think Vlad has a nice chance at a modest bounce back.

        Maybe looking breaking ball more often. Or have a better sense of “cheating” on the fast ball. He did hit 15 homers in 100 games this year.. so maybe if he stays injury free and can DH in 120, 130 games he’ll top 20.

        It’s like when Sammy Sosa was off the juice and old as dirt and he went to Texas and just cheated on the fastball better than he had in his recent years. Yeah, he’ll get figured out eventually but maybe not before he can go for 20 and 85.

    • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Archimedes Torquemada

      I’m actually rooting for Vlad to use the magical elixir tonic of Arlington to give him a glorious bounceback season or two, thus cementing his HoF worthiness.

      • Crazy Eyes Killa

        he does have teh .395/.471/.705/1.175 career line in Arlington

      • Bo

        Vlads ticket is already punched.

  • Januz

    I actually think Vlad has already punched his ticket to Cooperstown. NINE times over 100 RBI’s, and a .321 Batting Average. Those are superior numbers, and the only guy NOT named as a steroid user with superior numbers currently active is Pujols. He might not be first ballot, but he will be in.

    • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Archimedes Torquemada

      I hope so.

      The dismal vote tally for Barry Larkin gives pause, though.

      • Januz

        Larkin and Vlad are totally different cases position etc. On Larkin, I am certain that Larkin will be eventually elected (50% Plus first time out is not bad). Keep in mind, he was chosen to 13 All-Star Games, and has an MVP. The guy who may get screwed is Tim Raines

        • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Archimedes Torquemada

          The guy who may get screwed is Tim Raines

          To be frank, Tim Raines has already been screwed. He should have already been in long ago.

      • Bo

        How is 50% a dismal tally?

        Not every guy is a first ballot HOF for these voters. And not many that get over 50 their first try never get in.

        A little patience, Eric.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

      I think he’ll get in.

  • Bo

    There is only one reason the Yankees passed on Matsui. Someone they know well and love. They must really think his knees are shot and he wont last the season. Thats it.