Author Topic: Follow the Non-Prospects: Danny Espinosa, 2B  (Read 17433 times)

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Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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Arguably if you don't understand baseball or know how to read numbers.
Phillips, Barney, Pedroia, to my shock kinsler by some measures, cano, infante . . .  Utley when healthy also . . .  Don't just look at UZR.  Look at other systems.  He's very good, but there are better, especially in the AL.

Online imref

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.106 after an 0-3 day today.

:shock:

Offline Copecwby20

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His average is lower in AAA than the bigs? wow...

Offline Smithian

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No, it isn't. Anthony Rendon is proving that every day.
Rendon isn't bad defensively. He is a rookie but he has shown flashes of a darn good glove wherever he ends up at.

Offline Terpfan76

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Rendon isn't bad defensively. He is a rookie but he has shown flashes of a darn good glove wherever he ends up at.

this.

Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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I will give him time to develop and hope he learns the position, but so far, Rendon has looked awful at 2d.  What is frustrating is the errors on routine plays, like when he set up Tuesday's big inning.  hopefully, it is just stage fright and will correct itself.  Add in the apparent less range than DE, and I feel I'm watching Bellhorn v. Pokey Reese at times.  If DE can be fixed to be just slightly below average in OBP with resurgent power he's shown in the past, that could save his job at 2d. 

It is telling they are playing him at SS.  They are dressing him up for trade if they can fix his bat.  If they can't, then it'll be surgery.  I think there is a decent chance he'll never play in a :w: uniform again.

Pokey reference explanation - "Pokey would have had it" was a standing joke any time there was a misplay from a 2d baseman on the Sox betweeen 2004 until Pedroia in 2007.  Pokey was the magic glove of his era.

Offline NatsAllThe Way

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5 for 47 - 29 strikeouts.  Yikes.  They should put him in A ball, his confidence must be at an all-time low right now.  Pretty sad.

Offline Lintyfresh85

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5 for 47 - 29 strikeouts.  Yikes.  They should put him in A ball, his confidence must be at an all-time low right now.  Pretty sad.

I doubt it. He's clearly injured. Doesn't have much to do with confidence.

Online mitlen

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5 for 47 - 29 strikeouts.  Yikes.  ....   Pretty sad.

I feel bad for the guy.    He was never a slacker or a bad attitude guy.     He's gotta see the writing on the wall.   If he's hurt, he needs to take care of that 'cause he ain't comin' back to the majors in the foreseeable future.   If he keeps trying to be a tough guy, he may not be in baseball (professional) at all.

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Rendon isn't bad defensively. He is a rookie but he has shown flashes of a darn good glove wherever he ends up at.
But he's below average at second. Yet there isn't a single person that would swap him out for Espinosa's supposed gold glove. In fact, if you could promise that Espinosa could hit like he did in 2011, there still  wouldn't be anyone that would Espinosa playing second over Rendon

Defense is worth, maybe, 25%. Probably more like 15%

Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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a run is a run, slate.  you get more chances to make a difference offensively than defensively, but a play that saves or costs a run relative to an average fielder is the same as a run created by an at bat. 

Online Slateman

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a run is a run, slate.  you get more chances to make a difference offensively than defensively, but a play that saves or costs a run relative to an average fielder is the same as a run created by an at bat. 

Which is why offense > defense. Because if you hit a 3 run bomb, then you have to give up 3 runs defensively to break even. And, quite frankly, our starting pitching is good enough to make that not an issue.

Offline mimontero88

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Which is why offense > defense. Because if you hit a 3 run bomb, then you have to give up 3 runs defensively to break even. And, quite frankly, our starting pitching is good enough to make that not an issue.
I don't think anyone is trying to argue that defense >/= offense.  I think the point is that when you factor everything in 2011/2012 Danny Espinosa is a more valuable player than ALR.

Offline OldChelsea

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Espinosa was not in the side last night (Rhymes played 2nd) against WB/S, in a match that was called in the 4th inning due to rain (re-scheduled for today at 17.00 as part of twin-bill).

Offline NJ Ave

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Defense is worth, maybe, 25%. Probably more like 15%

This is true for some players. It's probably true for LaRoche, maybe Rendon as well. It's definitely NOT true for other players.

Defense is worth 0% to a DH. Defense can be worth LESS than 0% to some players, like Adam Dunn and actually make them less valuable if they play in the field rather than if they were just a DH. For JJ Hardy last year, it was worth 75-80%.

As far as ML 2B go, last year qualified 2B totaled 22 batting runs, TOTAL, and 81 runs from fielding and positional adjustment. So on average, 2B gloves are worth a lot more than 25% of their total value. Danny is no different (-4 runs batting and 16 runs from defense).


Online Slateman

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I don't think anyone is trying to argue that defense >/= offense.  I think the point is that when you factor everything in 2011/2012 Danny Espinosa is a more valuable player than ALR.

Because ALR's bat is mundane for a first baseman. You put up those numbers at second base and use second baseman value on his UZR and ALR is a far better player than Espinosa. Hitting is always more important at any position. If Laroche hit like James Loney, would we want him at first base? If Espinosa hit like Robinson Cano, would anyone give a crap if his UZR were -5?

This is true for some players. It's probably true for LaRoche, maybe Rendon as well. It's definitely NOT true for other players.

Defense is worth 0% to a DH. Defense can be worth LESS than 0% to some players, like Adam Dunn and actually make them less valuable if they play in the field rather than if they were just a DH. For JJ Hardy last year, it was worth 75-80%.

As far as ML 2B go, last year qualified 2B totaled 22 batting runs, TOTAL, and 81 runs from fielding and positional adjustment. So on average, 2B gloves are worth a lot more than 25% of their total value. Danny is no different (-4 runs batting and 16 runs from defense).

This speaks far more to the quality of second basemen than their value. Tell me, who are the second basemen that are getting big contracts and teams want to keep for a long time? Guys like Robinson Cano, Ian Kinsler, and Dustin Pedroia are valued because of their bat. The fact that Kinsler and Pedroia are goo defensively is a bonus. If they weren't they would still be playing second, because they hit (see Cano).

Offline mimontero88

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Because ALR's bat is mundane for a first baseman. You put up those numbers at second base and use second baseman value on his UZR and ALR is a far better player than Espinosa. Hitting is always more important at any position. If Laroche hit like James Loney, would we want him at first base? If Espinosa hit like Robinson Cano, would anyone give a crap if his UZR were -5?
Why would you put second baseman value on ALR's UZR?  You know the values are different for a reason, right?  They aren't just arbitrary numbers that you can manipulate like that.  I think this shows your lack of understanding of what those numbers mean.  If ALR could play second as well as Espinosa of course his bat is better but he can't so making that adjustment would be mixing apples with oranges and thus, makes a fallacious comparison.

Offline Copecwby20

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Why would you put second baseman value on ALR's UZR?  You know the values are different for a reason, right?  They aren't just arbitrary numbers that you can manipulate like that.  I think this shows your lack of understanding of what those numbers mean.  If ALR could play second as well as Espinosa of course his bat is better but he can't so making that adjustment would be mixing apples with oranges and thus, makes a fallacious comparison.

This is WNFF.NET!!!! We never let the facts get in the way of a good argument.

Offline mimontero88

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This speaks far more to the quality of second basemen than their value. Tell me, who are the second basemen that are getting big contracts and teams want to keep for a long time? Guys like Robinson Cano, Ian Kinsler, and Dustin Pedroia are valued because of their bat. The fact that Kinsler and Pedroia are goo defensively is a bonus. If they weren't they would still be playing second, because they hit (see Cano).
Um... what's wrong with Cano's defense?  He's an average defender at 2B.  In fact over the last five years he has a positive UZR mostly because he had a stellar 2012 season defensively.  That would make him a slightly above average defender at 2B over that time though, of course, he's more realistically just slightly below average.  If you can find a 2B with that kinda bat to bring here, we're all for it.  But that's not the discussion.  The discussion is ALR vs. Espi remembering that as you pointed out there just aren't many strong 2B bats out there making their defense, in general, much more important.

Online Slateman

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Why would you put second baseman value on ALR's UZR?  You know the values are different for a reason, right?  They aren't just arbitrary numbers that you can manipulate like that.  I think this shows your lack of understanding of what those numbers mean.  If ALR could play second as well as Espinosa of course his bat is better but he can't so making that adjustment would be mixing apples with oranges and thus, makes a fallacious comparison.

Why are we putting such a value on defense at second base? It is not a 50/50 split. It's not even a 25/75 split. The bat is far, far more important than the glove. If it weren't, Anthony Rendon would still be in Triple A, playing third base. Yet, despite the fact that  Danny Espinosa was on pace for the best fielding season of his career, he was replaced by a guy who is a mediocre second baseman(5 run DRS difference, 11 UZR/150, 4 UZR, and rendon has 5 errors in half as many innings to Espinosa's 3).

It's really simple: If defense is so valuable at second base, why was Danny sent down? If his defense was elite (which it's not) than on a 50/50 split, it shouldn't have mattered what he hit because he was saving more runs in the field than he was costing at the plate, right?

Robinson Cano, Ben Zoberist, Aaron Hill, Brandon Phillips, and Dustin Pedroia all had a lower ranking, defensively, than Espinosa last year. Yet all had higher WAR. Why? Because hitting matters more than defense. Even at a "defensive centric" position like second base. Dan Uggla was .1 WAR away from Espinosa, and he's awful defensively. Why so close then? Because his OPS was 17 points higher.

Offline mimontero88

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Why are we putting such a value on defense at second base? It is not a 50/50 split. It's not even a 25/75 split. The bat is far, far more important than the glove. If it weren't, Anthony Rendon would still be in Triple A, playing third base. Yet, despite the fact that  Danny Espinosa was on pace for the best fielding season of his career, he was replaced by a guy who is a mediocre second baseman(5 run DRS difference, 11 UZR/150, 4 UZR, and rendon has 5 errors in half as many innings to Espinosa's 3).

It's really simple: If defense is so valuable at second base, why was Danny sent down? If his defense was elite (which it's not) than on a 50/50 split, it shouldn't have mattered what he hit because he was saving more runs in the field than he was costing at the plate, right?

Robinson Cano, Ben Zoberist, Aaron Hill, Brandon Phillips, and Dustin Pedroia all had a lower ranking, defensively, than Espinosa last year. Yet all had higher WAR. Why? Because hitting matters more than defense. Even at a "defensive centric" position like second base. Dan Uggla was .1 WAR away from Espinosa, and he's awful defensively. Why so close then? Because his OPS was 17 points higher.
It's like you don't listen to a word that is being said.  NO ONE IS ARGUING THAT DEFENSE IS MORE IMPORTANT OR AS IMPORTANT AS OFFENSE.  The point is that WAR factors in that offense is more important and Espinosa is a more valuable player than LaRoche with all factors included.

Also, use numbers to prove that Danny Espinosa's defense isn't elite.  Go for it.  Prove me wrong.

And OPS doesn't factor into WAR so Uggla's OPS compared to Espinosa's is literally completely irrelevant to WAR.

Online Slateman

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It's like you don't listen to a word that is being said.  NO ONE IS ARGUING THAT DEFENSE IS MORE IMPORTANT OR AS IMPORTANT AS OFFENSE.  The point is that WAR factors in that offense is more important and Espinosa is a more valuable player than LaRoche with all factors included.

Also, use numbers to prove that Danny Espinosa's defense isn't elite.  Go for it.  Prove me wrong.

And OPS doesn't factor into WAR so Uggla's OPS compared to Espinosa's is literally completely irrelevant to WAR.
You've been arguing for several pages that defense is as vaulable as offense.

My point is that defense is not even close to as vaulable as offense.

Uggla's offensive production factors in to WAR. OPS is one of the better measures of offense in baseball. We can break down by other numbers, but the fact remains that Uggla's offense is better than Espinosa's.

Espinosa has not ranked in the top 5 of UZR or DRS ever. He has not won a gold glove.  He is not elite by any measure. He is very good. Frankly, I consider top 3 (top 10%) to be the measure of elite. Top 5 is being generous.

Offline mimontero88

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You've been arguing for several pages that defense is as vaulable as offense.

My point is that defense is not even close to as vaulable as offense.

Uggla's offensive production factors in to WAR. OPS is one of the better measures of offense in baseball. We can break down by other numbers, but the fact remains that Uggla's offense is better than Espinosa's.

Espinosa has not ranked in the top 5 of UZR or DRS ever. He has not won a gold glove.  He is not elite by any measure. He is very good. Frankly, I consider top 3 (top 10%) to be the measure of elite. Top 5 is being generous.
Show me the quote where I said defense is as valuable as offense.

OPS is NOT one of the better measures of offense in baseball and that is why it doesn't factor into WAR.  OPS assumes that slugging is just as valuable as getting on base.  In reality on base is 1.8x more valuable.  That is a HUGE discrepancy and it greatly inflates the offensive value of a player like Uggla who doesn't get on base enough but hits for power when he does get his hits.  A better metric is wOBA.  Dan Uggla had a .325 wOBA in 2012 compared to Espinosa's .313.  The reason the WAR totals were so close was that Uggla had a VERY good defensive season in 2012.  His UZR was 4.2 compared to 7.5 for Espinosa (if you include Espi's time at SS last year the number balloons to 12.9 which is actually the better measure because it all factors in to WAR).  So as you can see the ever-so-marginal offensive edge Uggla enjoyed was factored in much more highly than the much larger defensive edge Espinosa enjoyed and at the end of the day Espinosa was worth .1 win more than Uggla.

Espinosa played a lot of 2012 at SS.  If you add in the UZR from both he would be top 5.  If you don't want to, that's fine because it is two different positions.  Honestly I'm not going to argue about him being an elite defender.  If you don't consider him one, that's fine and you can make a case.  I do but it's not relevant to the discussion.

Offline PC

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Played in the 2nd game of the DH yesterday, went 0 for 3, 1K... now batting .100.

Online welch

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If Espinosa hit .275 and struck out about 15% of the time, his fielding would make him a starter, or at least would give the Nats a question among Espi, Rendon, RZim, and LaRoche. His 2011/2012 hitting suggests that he over-swings and strikes out too often. He led the league in K's last year, and was near the top in 2011. Striking out might not be a big deal if we were talking about Mickey Mantle or android Jason Giambi or dozens of real players who hit 40 homers a year. Espi is not those guys: he is a fast, sure-handed, strong-armed middle-infielder. He's swinging like a guy he is not. In the minors, he struck out a lot, drew few walks, and hit about .265.

At his best, Espi might be a hitter who typically hits .245 with 15 homers and 150 K's. (Lombo with less plate-sense but more power). That's a guess based on his hitting in the minors plus two full seasons with the Nats.

Even to do that, I wish Espi would:

- Repair his shoulder
- Give his wrist time to heal
- Work with a real hitting instructor
- Give up the "tater" obsession