Poll

What Should Happen With Espinosa?

Starts at 2B
48 (35.6%)
Replaced/Becomes Utility Player
31 (23%)
Ditched Completely
11 (8.1%)
Trade to Team Looking for MI
34 (25.2%)
DL, surgery or rest, then a month rehab in Syracuse
11 (8.1%)

Total Members Voted: 133

Author Topic: The Espinosa Question: What should happen with him?  (Read 16564 times)

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Offline NJ Ave

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #25: October 24, 2012, 01:34:16 PM »
Lombo/Espinosa is like a perfect old school/new school Rorshach test.

Online HalfSmokes

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #26: October 24, 2012, 01:51:17 PM »
after seeing the team struggle, I'd take consistent singles over the occasional HR with a crap load of strike outs.

Offline NationalHeat

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #27: October 24, 2012, 01:53:43 PM »
17 HR and 37 doubles are not occasional. Thats a lot in comparison to other 2B.

Lombo had a .317 OBP last year. When all you're bringing to the table is getting on base and you can't even do that 35% of the time, you're simply not a starter.

Offline NationalHeat

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #28: October 24, 2012, 01:54:30 PM »
A walk is as good as a single. And if they're both getting on base as the same clip, where is the argument?

Online HalfSmokes

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #29: October 24, 2012, 01:57:31 PM »
17 HR and 37 doubles are not occasional. Thats a lot in comparison to other 2B.

Lombo had a .317 OBP last year. When all you're bringing to the table is getting on base and you can't even do that 35% of the time, you're simply not a starter.

the slash line that matters most is .067/.176/.067   Clutch is a meaningless term, and so is choking, but Espinosa is streaky as hell and when he's cold, he's awful

Offline NationalHeat

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #30: October 24, 2012, 02:00:42 PM »
the slash line that matters most is .067/.176/.067   Clutch is a meaningless term, and so is choking, but Espinosa is streaky as hell and when he's cold, he's awful

Try swinging a 32 oz bat towards a 95 MPH fastball with a bum shoulder. Not all cortisone shots are miracle makers.

That's a tiny sample size, literally a series. I'm not looking to dump Gio because of some nonsensical notion of "choking."

My avatar was known to "choke" as far back as 2007. Seems pretty silly now.

Sorry, can't bring myself to want to make a change because someone is clutch or not.

Offline NationalHeat

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #31: October 24, 2012, 02:02:11 PM »
Baseball reference has his 162 game avg as .727 OPS, 21 HR, 64 RBI. That's starter worthy, even if he never improves.

Online HalfSmokes

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #32: October 24, 2012, 02:04:38 PM »
Try swinging a 32 oz bat towards a 95 MPH fastball with a bum shoulder. Not all cortisone shots are miracle makers.

That's a tiny sample size, literally a series. I'm not looking to dump Gio because of some nonsensical notion of "choking."

My avatar was known to "choke" as far back as 2007. Seems pretty silly now.

Sorry, can't bring myself to want to make a change because someone is clutch or not.

and, I said I really don't believe in the concept of clutch or choking, but I have seen Espinosa go cold for long stretches, then tear off an absurd week or two. That's great, if the hot streak hits at the right time, and awful if it doesn't

Offline NationalHeat

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #33: October 24, 2012, 02:13:55 PM »
Fair enough.

Online Slateman

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #34: October 24, 2012, 02:39:18 PM »
and, I said I really don't believe in the concept of clutch or choking, but I have seen Espinosa go cold for long stretches, then tear off an absurd week or two. That's great, if the hot streak hits at the right time, and awful if it doesn't

The simple solution is to simply bench him when it's obvious he's cold. Let Lombo play of  a week or so and have Espinosa work through it in the cage.

Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #35: October 24, 2012, 03:53:54 PM »
NJ Ave makes the point about Danny / Lombo being the perfect old school / new school debate.  I tend to be "new school" on most line up questions.  Along these lines, I don't find the old school model of the slappy #2 hitter with no power and hit-heavy but low OBP all that sensible.  Most of you have seen the line up optimizers and the sabermetric discussions about how the #2 hitter should be one of your 3 best OPS guys, along with leadoff and clean up.  Clearly, neither of these guys belong at the top of order by that approach.  The offense took off when Harper and Werth lined up at the top.

For fun, I pulled up B-R's Run/ game rankings of just 2012 and the NL, to reflect the league and the current run environment. By runs per game, here are the top 5 and bottom 5, and where they ranked in OPS for #2 hitters:
           R/G          #2 OPS
Mil       4.79            .699 (11)
St. L    4.72            .835   (1)
Col      4.68            .719   (7)
Ariz     4.53            .829    (2)
:w:      4.51            .791    (3)

AVG     4.22

NYM     4.01            .715   (8 )
LAD      3.93            .672   (14)
CHC     3.78            .617    (16)
MIA      3.76            .670    (15)
HOU     3.60            .693    (12)

There's a few outliers, but the 4 bottom teams had 4 out of the 5 the lowest OPS for their #2 hitters, while the top 5 teams had the top 3 OPS for their #2 hitters.

You can argue that the top line ups had a lot of other good hitters, and the bottom ones had a lot of bad hitters, but there does seem to be some correlation between the strength of performance from #2 hitters and run scoring.

Geeky point below the spoiler:
By the way, while the top 3 offenses in OPS from #2 hitters are also in the top 4 for tOPS+, a measure of the #2 hitter's OPS v. the rest of the order in this case, there isn't as tight a relationship.  This probably has to do with manager philosophy.

Offline WhiteWhale

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #36: October 24, 2012, 04:20:35 PM »
I think that (JCA's post) pretty well puts to bed the part of the discussion that deals with the 2 spot.  I for one love Harper there. He feeds off the lead off hitter, especially when it was his surrogate big brother, has speed to move himself for the other guys, gets the crowd in (home) or out (away) of the game early, and energizes the offense from that spot. There is not a spot in this lineup where either of our 2B should be discussed until the 7 spot at best. I have seen arguments on here that they should be behind the catcher, but that is a matter of philosophy and I personally like a good situational hitter like Suzuki in that spot. I would be more okay with Lombo there then Espinosa. I know it sounds weird to say a better hitter should go 8th instead of 7th, but its the idea of getting done what needs to be done before the pitcher comes up, after your boom-bust guys had their cuts.

with the lineup talk out of the way, the heart of the question here on this thread goes to what to do with Danny.
I gotta say, when the sting was fresh, I had it in my mind that Danny, Beast, Storen and Clip all needed lesser roles and should be upgraded. I think that was just the sting.

The point was made a few posts up, that Danny is way ahead of bad Ian, and good gracious look at how that bore fruit. Different players to be sure, but with that experience in his pocket, its going to make Rizzo, a "my guys" type GM, be even more of a "my guys" type GM.

News flash folks - Rizzo loves Danny. Davey Loves Danny. He is your 2013 starting 2B and may see some pine in a HUGE slump so lombo gets some at bats, but Lombo is seen as a utility guy, and I'm okay with that. A rose is a rose, and a Lombo is a slap hitter that fields everywhere he has been played competently to well.

Posts that talk about packaging Morse and Danny for something drive me nuts. Not because I am being critical of those folks, but because those thought slip in on me too. Here is the thing...one recently talked about how easy it would be sell because a team looking to compete would love these guys....AREN'T WE LOOKING TO COMPETE??? I KNOW A TEAM WHERE THOSE GUYS FILL ROLES PRETTY WELL.

we have to stop thinking that huge moves are needed. I don't want to be complacent, but I dont think Peavy, Madson, upgrading over Gorzo, and an upgraded bench player is being complacent.  I don't see a need to trade away parts of the core. it is why we are where we are...and don't say "we are watching the world series - that's where we are"...its too 5th grade...and now assuredly since I said don't say it, someone will.

oh, well, rambled enough - main point, this thread  could be 29876 pages long and have all the best hypotheticals in the world - Rizzo like Danny, Davey like Danny - if you plan on watching, you'll be watching Danny, batting 7th, playing Second Base.

Online monkeyhit

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #37: October 24, 2012, 04:52:12 PM »
Loved Danny when he came up. Not so much now. Great fielder and arm, but horrible hole in his swing that may never disappear.  Like to keep him for defensive backup at SS and 2nd, but would like upgrade at 2nd base sometime between now and next October. May be Lombo or Rendon, but I am not counting on Espinosa making a Desmond move in 2013.

I agree that he is beloved by mangement, so the whole point is moot. Still, I'm keen on seeing what Rendon brings sooner than later.

Online Vega

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #38: October 24, 2012, 04:56:13 PM »
What was the league average offensive production for second basemen this year?

Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #39: October 24, 2012, 05:31:32 PM »
6th in WAR among 22 qualified 2d basemen in MLB, 3d in the NL.

But you are right, the offense was relatively down. 15th in wOBA in MLB, 8th in the NL.  Most of his value was in defense.

Online Baseball is Life

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #40: October 24, 2012, 05:43:32 PM »

News flash folks - Rizzo loves Danny. Davey Loves Danny. He is your 2013 starting 2B and may see some pine in a HUGE slump so lombo gets some at bats, but Lombo is seen as a utility guy, and I'm okay with that. A rose is a rose, and a Lombo is a slap hitter that fields everywhere he has been played competently to well.


Lock this thread.

God, that sounds like MDS. Where is he? Am I the only one that misses him. This board is not nearly as entertaining without him.


Offline welch

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #41: October 24, 2012, 06:08:52 PM »
We had the same discussion last December or January. I think Espi's 190 K's is bad, and his 17 home runs does not begin to make up for that. He looks, to me, like a medium-sized guy trying to swing like a power-hitter. Swinging from the heels, to use an "old school" term.

The team has power hitters: Werth, Morse, Zimmerman, LaRoche, Desmond, Harper, plus Tyler Moore looking for a spot. Desmond is two inches taller and ten pounds heavier than Espi. Moore is 20 pounds heavier, and so is Harper. Morse and Zimmerman a very big guys: over 6 - 3 and 230 pounds.

Espi's 17 home runs is about three per month. That's not dependable power.

For those 17 homers, he gives a free out 189 times, or roughly 30% of the time. That is painful.

Lombo strikes out about 10% of the time, and that's with many of his at-bats coming as a pinch-hitter or spot starter. What did he do in August?

Consider a typical rally situation: runner on second or third, one out. My rough guess is that Lombo, hitting at his August rate, is more likely to drive in the run than Espi. Sure, Danny is more likely to hit a homer than Lombo, but still not very often. With that runner on third, just needing a sac fly, Espi is three times more likely to strikeout. Bang. Two outs. 

Trade Espinosa? Of course not. Make him hit for average rather than try for that homer. Work on that swing he still takes at a breaking ball outside and in the dirt. He's done it since his first September...after his good first week, pitchers seemed to find that dead spot.

If he can't change, then platoon him with Lombo. Don't trade either: there is no upgrade on the market, and Desmond / Espi / Lombo are a solid infield.

Offline MorseTheHorse

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #42: October 24, 2012, 08:09:14 PM »
oh, well, rambled enough - main point, this thread  could be 29876 pages long and have all the best hypotheticals in the world - Rizzo like Danny, Davey like Danny - if you plan on watching, you'll be watching Danny, batting 7th, playing Second Base.

I never understand this sentiment.  In this thread we're discussing what WE think would be best.  What is actually gonna happen is of no importance. 

The offseason is long my friend, there is plenty of time for hypotheticals.  Hell we should get 30 posters together and draft teams.  We got time!   

Offline MorseTheHorse

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #43: October 24, 2012, 08:12:24 PM »
3.5 WAR in 2011, 3.8 WAR in 2012. 

Otoh second best WPA at the plate in '11 to negative WPA in '12.  That would seem to confirm what my eyes are telling me, and they are telling me that Espinosa is a poor situational hitter.  In particular he strikes out wayyyyyyy to  much when all we really need is a ball in play. 

On the bright side improving situation hitting seems like something that's possible for a young player. 

Online zimm_da_kid

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #44: October 24, 2012, 08:13:49 PM »
Hell we should get 30 posters together and draft teams.  We got time!   


great idea!  let's do it!

Offline NationalHeat

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #45: October 25, 2012, 12:38:12 PM »
great idea!  let's do it!

WNFF OOTP league?

Offline Lintyfresh85

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #46: October 25, 2012, 12:51:37 PM »
In. So much in.

Offline cmdterps44

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #47: October 25, 2012, 12:55:10 PM »
I don't know anything about it but I'm down. Some one make an official thread in the red loft.

Online Vega

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #48: October 26, 2012, 01:20:03 PM »
6th in WAR among 22 qualified 2d basemen in MLB, 3d in the NL.

But you are right, the offense was relatively down. 15th in wOBA in MLB, 8th in the NL.  Most of his value was in defense.
So from what I can understand about those sabremetrics, he's a pretty decent second baseman in comparison to the rest of the league, so what exactly are we complaining about? Tolerable offensive production and really good defense from a position where offense is hard to come by. That is acceptable IMO. Not every player is going to be a superstar.

Online Slateman

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Re: The Espinosa Question
« Reply #49: October 26, 2012, 01:22:50 PM »
Place-warmer until Rendon comes up and starting winning batting titles. Then he's trade bait.