Saturday, September 18, 2010

2010 A.L. Hitter Busts: Non-Top 10

The series I wrote about bargains last week seems to have generated some interest (if not discussion), so I thought I'd turn the tables and look at some hitters who were big busts - but not the hugest - and see if we should have seen these guys coming or not.

2010 11th-20th Biggest Losses, A.L. Hitters (as of 9/12)

11Jose Lopez$7$20-14

12Garrett Atkins-$1$12-13

13Aaron Hill$11$24-13

14Ian Kinsler$19$31-13

15Dustin Pedroia$17$29-12

16Asdrubal Cabrera$7$19-12

17Gordon Beckham$12$24-12

18Nick Johnson$0$12-12

19Joe Mauer$24$35-11

20Mark Teixeira$26$37-11




I've been dragging these charts out for so long now that I can tell you what I'm going to see before I finish completing them. Most of these players got a raise; only Hill, Cabrera, and Johnson took a pay cut. It's generally not a good idea to pay a hitter more than what he earned the year before, and in the cases of Mauer and Teixeira it's a terrible idea. The best hitter in the A.L. earned $36 in 2009; you're paying two guys who don't steal bases - and don't contribute in that category - within a $1 of that threshold.

Did I overspend on any of these hitters?

Just Kinsler in my home A.L.-only league. I should have followed my own advice and not bid over what he earned last year.

Did I like any of these hitters more than the market did?

Just Hill. I thought the market was being too cautious; it turns out they weren't being cautious enough.

The thing that jumps out here is how many 2B are on this list. Including Lopez - who was eligible from 2009 - there are six 2B here. That's a lot, particularly for a position that was suddenly starting to look incredibly strong at the end of last season.

Top 10 A.L. Second Basemen 2009

1Robinson Cano
2Brian Roberts
3Aaron Hill$27$11+16$11$13$4
4Ian Kinsler
5Dustin Pedroia
6Asdrubal Cabrera$21$9+12$7$12$8
7Adam Kennedy$19
8Jose Lopez
9Alexei Ramirez
10Alberto Callaspo$18$3+14$4$3$5


When you consider that Roberts and Scott Sizemore are currently sitting in the Top 10 Bust list, second base was a disaster this year for owners who spent their money there.

Cano is going to save this group's bacon in 2010. But not a single regular is going to turn a profit of $5 or more this year. Only Mike Aviles and Sean Rodriguez will manage to turn that trick.

Perhaps this is another lesson here. Don't read too much into what happened last year searching for a trend. Chances are it wasn't.

No comments: