Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Craig Monroe, 2008 World Series MVP

Check it out, The Sidler is going to write about non-Indiana sports!

I don't know about the rest of you, but I cleared my late October 2008 calendar after hearing the Twins, in a stroke of genius, traded for Craig Monroe.

Kidding aside, what exactly did new Twins GM Bill Smith, he of the most boring name in sports, add to the roster today for the price of a player to be named later?

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/players/stats?playerId=4824

Craig Monroe stunk last year. He was awful, near-Punto awful even. He had the third-worst VORP (value over replacement level) "value" in the league, trailing only Little Nicky Punto and Angel Gonzales, whoever that is. Monroe's .638 OPS (on-base plus slugging) was by far the worst of his career, .100 points lower than his rookie year, since becoming a regular MLB player.

But Craig Monroe hasn't always been Puntonian, and even when he stunk, he would have provided some value to the Twins, namely vs. left-handed pitching. Monroe's .496 slugging % vs. LHP would have put him behind only former-Twin Torii Hunter (just admit it, he's gone) in 2007. Gardy can't figure out platoons, but hopefully his anemic bat vs. RHP stays out of the starting lineup.

I'm not going to pretend to be more than an amateur expert, but Monroe's pre-2007 stats look a lot like a mirrored Jacque Jones, who could never hit LHP. If used properly, guys like Monroe and Jones can provide plenty of value to a team, especially one with payroll constraints like the Twins. There is also hope that he has a Jose Guillen-like rebound, who went from a Monroe 07 season to hit .290, get on base at a .350 clip, and hit with 23 HR for the Mariners.

With the state of the Twins OF/DH spots, this is a move worth making, even if casual fans and KFAN hosts will mock and ridicule it. Now if we get to April and this is THE MOVE of the off-season, then feel free to mock and/or ridicule. But this is a low risk move with more reward potential than Aaron Boone or Tony Batista ever offered.

If nothing else, when compared to a Darin Erstad signing, this is a great move.

2 comments:

Maddog said...

Low risk? He made 4.75 M last year and is arbitration eligible this year. I don't think anybody in the history of arbitration has ever taken a pay cut. So lets just say he makes 6 million next year. We are going to pay 6 mill for a guy that was dueling Nick Punto for the honor of the worst offensive player in all of baseball????

Plus the guy will be 31 by the time spring training rolls around. This is a horse shit move and they basically just took 6 million away from using it elsewhere like signing Tori or Silva or Nathan for a few more years. I wouldn't trade a pack of smokes for this piece of shit one hit wonder.

Low risk for this ball club is a million dollar risk ie Butch Husky, Tony Batista Ruben Sierra. This is not a good start to Bill Smith's tenure as GM of the MN Twins.

Anonymous said...

Bill Smith should read money ball!