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Saturday, September 16, 2017

Have the Cardinals Found the New J.D. Martinez? | FanGraphs Baseball

Dave Cameron likes him; he really likes him.

Jim Furtado Posted: September 16, 2017 at 07:41 AM | 5 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: cardinals, jose martinez

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   1. cardsfanboy Posted: September 16, 2017 at 11:02 PM (#5533260)
One of the things that the Cardinals have been able to do over the past 20 years or so, is produce major league regulars. Not superstars, but guys who can play a few seasons as starters on many teams.

The drawback about this is that there might be an illusion that a player has a higher potential than they really do, while they perform at a major league level in their first year. There is a legitimate argument to be made that Jose Martinez is better than his minor league track record, but there is a legitimate argument that could be made for any breakout rookie performance at age 26-29 that happens, and way too many of those arguments is fanboy wishcasting.(not saying that they can't put out a decent few years, but you are very unlikely to get a player who is going to put up 4+ war season for 3-5 years from this group)

   2. cardsfanboy Posted: September 17, 2017 at 11:20 AM (#5533315)
Just because I was curious about this and no one else is in this thread. I decided to take a look at a few things. Since 1998, the Cardinals have had 15* offensive rookies who posted better than a .5 waa, and 19 pitchers who also posted better than a .5 waa...for the batters a .5 waa seems like a good threshold, but the pitchers it seems a little low as you get a lot of relievers(and in the case of Kiko Calero and Rick Ankiel, makes the list twice as a rookie) that just didn't have any real expectations even after that first season. But it's a threshold to begin the conversation.

* Rick Ankiel had .8 waa offensively in his rookie season of 2000.(he actually beat Furcal in total bWar that season 4.2 to 4.0)

Looking at the 13 offensive rookies you have Albert Pujols who was a legitimate superstar.... JD Drew was at least a well regarded prospect, Kolten Wong made several top 100 prospect lists, so he qualifies as a well regarded prospect... that is it of Cardinal well regarded prospects who had good rookie seasons, the rest of these guys had years out of nowhere more or less

Aledmys Diaz with a 3.5/2.1 (War/Waa)
Randal Grichuk 3.2/2.0
Allen Craig 2.3/1.6
Jose Martinez 2.0/1.1 (can change still)
Paul Dejong 1.9/.7 (can change still)
Chris Duncan 1.8/.9
Brendan Ryan 1.6/1.0
Tommy Pham 1.5/.9
Kerry Robinson 1.3/.7
Pete Kozma 1.2/.9

Of this group, the oldest at the time is Jose Martinez at 28, and Pham and Kerry Robinson at 27.

Names I was expecting to see on this list but didn't.
Ryan Ludwick misses out on this because he actually had exceeded his rookie status in 2003 with 175 pa for Tex/Cle, but his first full season was for the Cardinals in 2007(he had 104 games in 4 seasons 2002-2005 before joining the Cardinals) he put up a 1.5 war/.5 waa at age 28.
Jon Jay posted a -.1/.9 waa/war his rookie season, next year he put up a 1.2/2.8
Skip schumaker never put up a waa higher than .1 in his career, but did earn 4.7 war for his 8 seasons, 810 games as a Cardinal.
Bo Hart put up a 1.0 war but a 0.0 waa his rookie season.
Placido Polanco took a year to develop had -1.6/-.9 waa/war his rookie season but then put up .9/2.0
Joe McEwing managed to do something difficult, put up a fairly high war of 1.5 in his rookie season with a -.2 waa.
Eli Marrero was mostly just a backup catcher and didn't really break out as a hitter until moved off the position(not that he was ever a great hitter)
Yadier was promoted about two years too soon because of his glove.
John Rodriguez surprisingly was only -.3/.2 and -.2/.5 in his two seasons as a Cardinal despite playing in a total of 158 games with a 110 ops+(sub par defense at left will kill your war)

Brian Barton(not to be confused with Brian Barden who did nothing) and Joe Mather did well enough when they did play, but didn't really have many pa.
Colby Rasmus was a well regarded prospect but his rookie season didn't meet the waa criteria I set up with a .3/1.9 season(I'm thinking the waa criteria is probably too high for this exercise)
David Freese just didn't play enough his rookie season.
Daniel Descalso was always just a super sub filler material, the definition of a replacement level player.
Matt Adams missed out because of the waa requirement with a .1/1.2 rookie season hitting a 129 ops+ with 17 hr in 319 pa.
Greg Garcia put up a .4/.7 in 87 pa in his rookie year.
Matt Carpenter with a 125 ops+ in his rookie year only had a .1/1.1 waa/war thinks to positional adjustments and subpar fielding.
Jeremy Hazelbaker decent enough ops+ but lost everything he brought with the bat, with position, defense and baserunning adjustments.
Stephen Piscotty didn't meet the waa threshold either, even though he did put up a 130 ops+ in 256 pa and finished 6th in rookie of the year, the negative fielding at left brought all his bat value down to .1/.9 waa/war.

If you look at this list, it doesn't leave you with a lot of confidence that the team can create long term offensive superstars. Over the past 20 years you have Pujols, Drew, Polanco , Molina and Carpenter as the only multiple all stars, and you could probably add Colby Rasmus who has never made an all star team, but has put up 19 career war.

Still you get, what feels like a lot of guys who aren't regarded prospects having a surprising year or two (and that isn't including the Gyorko's or Spiezo's of the world that seemed to find new life when arriving in St Louis) But this exercise does make me think that it might be in the Cardinals interest to give up on guys like Grichuk or Piscotty who might have already shot their loads.
   3. Greg K Posted: September 17, 2017 at 12:02 PM (#5533326)
If you look at this list, it doesn't leave you with a lot of confidence that the team can create long term offensive superstars. Over the past 20 years you have Pujols, Drew, Polanco , Molina and Carpenter as the only multiple all stars, and you could probably add Colby Rasmus who has never made an all star team, but has put up 19 career war.

That is a fun experiment, I'd be curious to try it with the Jays over the past 20 years...because my reaction to all this would be that the Cardinals have brought along a healthy crop of stars while at the same time pumping out useful major league talent of a lower tier.

Starting in 1998 gives you some fun end-point issues though. There are some players that pop up just before Shannon Stewart, Chris Carpenter, and Jose Cruz (1997), Shawn Green (1995), Carlos Delgado (1994)

But we do have (on year rookie status was reached)
1998 Kelvim Escobar
1999 Roy Halladay (All-Star, HOF discussion)
2001 Vernon Wells (All-Star)
2001 Felipe Lopez (All-Star, though not much success with the Jays)
2001 Josh Towers (led the AL-East in ERA one year!)
2002 Josh Phelps (never really panned out)
2002 Orlando Hudson (All-Star)
2002 Eric Hinske (useful for a couple seasons)
2003 Reed Johnson (borderline starter/4th OF for many years...good player)
2004 Alex Rios (All-Star)
2004 Dave Bush (decent starter for a few years)
2004 Jason Frasor (good middle reliever forever)
2005 Aaron Hill (All-Star)
2006 Casey Janssen (good reliever for a few years)
2006 Shaun Marcum (decent starter for a couple years)
2007 Adam Lind (good bat, but no position)
2009 Travis Snider (like Phelps, stud prospect that didn't work out)
2009 Ricky Romero (good until he wasn't)
2011 Henderson Alvarez
2014 Marcus Stroman
2014 Kevin Pillar (one of the few who actually fit that Cardinals mold of coming out of nowhere)
2015 Aaron Sanchez (All-Star)
2015 Devon Travis (though pretty much all the minor league development was done by the Tigers)

Jays had Jayson Werth in 2002-2003 before he really played a full season. Some other guys like that, Adeiny Hechavarria, Eric Thames, Yan Gomes, and others I'm sure I'm forgetting.

   4. cardsfanboy Posted: September 17, 2017 at 01:22 PM (#5533344)
From the pitching side, the Cardinals have good first seasons out of...
Shelby Miller(highly regarded prospect)
Rick Ankiel(highly regarded prospect who flamed out)
Alex Reyes, great rookie year, but then had Tommy John surgery.
Kevin Siegrist, a more or less standard lefty specialist.
Luke Weaver,(highly regarded prospect, still in rookie year)
Michael Wacha(a well regarded prospect)
Seth Maness, another support relief pitcher, nothing special(other than the gidp rate)
Trevor Rosenthal... a well regarded arm.
Adam Wainwright(all star, cy young candidate--most cy young shares ever by a player who has never won the award---)

missing from my list above(.5 waa as a rookie) includes
Carlos Martinez(crappy rookie year by result, by fip a bit better)
Lance Lynn, just didn't pitch enough innings in his rookie year only 34 innings but still a .3 waa.
Jaime Garcia, who somehow managed to exceed his rookie limit in a year(2009) where he didn't pitch in the majors, but his 2010 season was excellent.
Jason Motte who had a poor rookie season, but then the next season started putting up 150 era+ average.
Joe Kelly who had a good rookie season (108 era+ over 107 ip) but that worked out to a -.1/.7 waa/war.
Brad Thompson who had 55 ip at 145 era+ his rookie season, missed the cutoff with a .3/.5 waa/war.
Dan Haren, a highly regarded prospect, just never pitched well in St Louis.
Bud Smith, a highly regarded prospect just didn't pitch enough innings and then blew his arm out.
Matt Morris missed because of the 1998 cutoff I chose.

The Cardinals had a lot more highly regarded pitching prospects than batting prospects and more pitching prospects panned out. As it stands success stories would have to be Adam Wainwright, Dan Haren, Jason Motte, Jaime Garcia, Lance Lynn, Carlos Martinez, Trevor Rosenthal, Shelby Miller, and Michael Wacha (still waiting on Weaver, Joe Kelly, Alex Reyes and Marco Gonzales)

And Mike Crudale.

   5. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: September 17, 2017 at 03:44 PM (#5533400)
And Mike Crudale.

If you made that entire post with an eye on leading up to that, I tip my cap to you, sir.

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