Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand
Tuesday, August 12, 2014
not groundbreaking stuff, but i think it’s somewhat interesting.
In a perfect world, a bench wouldn’t need to contribute much at all, because in a perfect world, all nine (or eight) starters would be so productive and so consistent that a bench would barely be needed. But that’s not how it works. People get hurt, people go through slumps and people simply need a rest now and then, so the luxury of having not only depth, but productive depth, becomes a pretty important and easily forgotten part of a roster’s construction. The difference between the best and worst bench units this year is already around six wins, so the value of a good bench can really add up over time and have a pretty significant impact on a season.
What I’ve done is attempted to find the best and worst bench units of the 2014 season, so far. In the American League, I’ve added up the WAR of all players after the top nine plate appearance leaders. In the National League, all after the top eight, to reflect for the absence of a designated hitter.
Biggest offenders: Freddy Galvis (-0.9), Tony Gwynn (-0.7), Cesar Hernandez (-0.7).
For some reason this just doesn’t come as a huge surprise. I mean, it probably should. The Phillies are one of the oldest teams in the MLB, with an average age of 30, so conventional wisdom would be to assemble a strong bench to prepare for the frailty of having an old roster. But it just doesn’t come as a huge surprise. Seems like the Phillies have been finding themselves at the bottom of a lot of lists lately. Tony Gwynn Jr. lucked into some playing time due to Domonic Brown being literally the worst player in baseball this year, but wasn’t much better. If there’s a positive to take from all of this, it’s that none of these players play for the Phillies anymore! At the same time, it also means that Reid Brignac, Andres Blanco and Grady Sizemore do.
Biggest helpers: Stephen Vogt (+1.5), Craig Gentry (+1.1), Kyle Blanks (+0.6).
Of course the A’s are on this list. They’ve seemingly been the master of the platoon for a couple years now, and their depth and bench management has been vital to their recent resurgence as a franchise. Stephen Vogt is a weird catcher/right fielder hybrid who allows the A’s to DH John Jaso and still have a backup catcher without having to sacrifice a potential backup outfielder. The A’s traded for Gentry to serve as a fourth outfielder who provides both elite defense and speed, which is exactly what he’s done. And then there’s Kyle Blanks who I literally didn’t know was out of the Padres organization until I started doing this post, but it turns out he is and he’s been a monster so far in Oakland.
for his generous support.
You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.
: Rays missing out shows how tough it is to consistently reach playoffs
(19 - 6:15am, Sep 23)
Last: Barnaby JonesNewsblog
: Mets near extension with GM Alderson
(14 - 6:13am, Sep 23)
Last: Arbitol DijalerNewsblog
: MLB: Braves fire GM Frank Wren; John Hart to take over interim position
(139 - 6:04am, Sep 23)Last:
: MLB creates pace of game committee
(73 - 5:10am, Sep 23)
Last: Robert in Manhattan BeachNewsblog
: HBT: Talking head says Jeter is “a fraud” and “you are all suckers”
(217 - 3:48am, Sep 23)Last:
Srul Itza At HomeNewsblog
: ESPN (Crasnick): Free-agent missteps led to demise of Atlanta’s Frank Wren
(13 - 2:39am, Sep 23)
Last: Walt DavisNewsblog
: OMNICHATTER 9-22-2014
(126 - 2:26am, Sep 23)Last:
Joey B. "disrespects the A"Newsblog
: Royals encounter problem with online sale of playoff tickets
(46 - 2:04am, Sep 23)
: Joe Girardi: ‘Pitch the right way’
(64 - 1:27am, Sep 23)
: OT August 2014: Wrassle Mania I
(215 - 1:09am, Sep 23)Last:
: Chad | Have a heart! Root for the Royals
(31 - 11:53pm, Sep 22)
: 10 teams that will soon face Jeter-like consquences with stars
(18 - 11:48pm, Sep 22)
Last: SoSHially UnacceptableNewsblog
: OT: NFL/NHL thread
(8055 - 11:35pm, Sep 22)Last:
: OT: The Soccer Thread, September 2014
(364 - 11:31pm, Sep 22)Last:
Commissioner Bud Black Beltre HillmanNewsblog
: OT: Politics, September, 2014: ESPN honors Daily Worker sports editor Lester Rodney
(3449 - 10:33pm, Sep 22)Last:
The John Wetland Memorial Death (CoB)