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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Joura: Using the past to predict Jason Bay’s future

The Bay Platform: A dead-end, if ever.

Since they have not released him, it is apparent that the Mets think Jason Bay has a future. However, it’s impossible for those of us who don’t personally owe him at least $19 million to get that same opinion by watching him in the present. So, the only thing left to do is examine the past and hope that there’s someone in baseball’s rich history that we can point to as an example of bouncing back.

Unfortunately that person doesn’t exist. I searched for corner outfielders with at least 1,000 PA in their age 31-33 seasons with an OPS+ of 95 or worse. This covers Bay’s time with the Mets, in which he has 1,105 PA and an OPS+ of 91. I sorted the list by batting average and Bay’s .231 mark is the worst of 44 players in our sample.

Johnny Callison – 3X All-Star, finished second in the MVP voting in 1964. In his age 34 season he posted a 22 OPS+ in 142 PA.

Von Hayes – Finished 8th in the MVP voting in 1986 and made the All-Star team as a 30-year old. Retired after his age 33 season, when he put up a 78 OPS+ in 350 PA.

Joe Rudi – Two-time MVP runner up, he left the A’s to sign a free agent contract with the Angels and was only a shadow of his former self, in part due to injuries. Rudi played two seasons after age 33 and put up a .200/.278/.340 line in 358 PA.

Jeffrey Leonard – Two-time All-Star who was also a down ballot MVP candidate in two other seasons. In his age 34 season he posted a .251/.305/.356 line in 525 PA in his last season in the majors.

...It’s pretty sad when Leonard and his .661 OPS is the upside in your group of peers but that’s what the Mets and Bay face if they have a reunion in 2013. Sandy Alderson was able to convince the Wilpons to cut the cord with both Luis Castillo and Oliver Perez when they had a year remaining on their contracts and were owed $18 million. That was the right decision then. There’s little doubt that cutting Bay is the right decision now. Let’s see if Alderson and the Wilpons can use their own history to make the Mets’ future better.

Repoz Posted: September 12, 2012 at 05:59 AM | 9 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: history, mets

Reader Comments and Retorts

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   1. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: September 12, 2012 at 07:26 AM (#4233419)
Since they have not released him, it is apparent that the Mets think Jason Bay has a future.

That is not necessarily true. If they have to pay him they may as well keep him around assuming he is not blocking anyone. Just cutting someone loose without a better option is a mistake.
   2. BDC Posted: September 12, 2012 at 09:04 AM (#4233474)
If you do a search for ballplayers who were bad over a span of X years, most of them don't have futures by definition. That said, the maximum upside for Bay would be somebody like Marquis Grissom. Grissom, who like Bay had been good, was about as bad as you can get by age 33 (244/288/351 in a full season for an OPS+ of 63). His future was bleak, but he came back to have three pretty good years in his mid-late 30s. In the teeth of the PEDs era, for sure, and I have no idea what he was putting on his cornflakes; I'm just reading things superficially. Anyway, it can be done, at least at face value.
   3. weiss-man Posted: September 12, 2012 at 10:25 AM (#4233584)
Future? He hasn't got one.
   4. Shooty Did Not Have Relations With That Pig Posted: September 12, 2012 at 10:38 AM (#4233605)
What about Andruw Jones as a comp? Bay comes back as a semi-useful platoon player?
   5. zack Posted: September 12, 2012 at 10:48 AM (#4233618)
That's all well and good if you think Bay is going through a rough spell, but I think it's pretty clear he has irreparably lost physical abilities (and maybe even mental faculties given the multiple concussions) as the result of serious injuries. The fact that he continues to get playing time is a farce.
   6. depletion Posted: September 13, 2012 at 10:33 AM (#4234627)
The Mets don't have a lot of options at CF. Perhaps, if they have him relearn CF in the offseason, he'll forget what he was doing at the plate. They need at least one very good outfielder, probably more, in order to even think about being competitive. It's probably easier to find a good corner outfielder than CF. But, yeah, he's probably finished.
   7. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: September 13, 2012 at 10:36 AM (#4234630)
My prediction? Pain.
   8. ColonelTom Posted: September 13, 2012 at 11:51 AM (#4234761)
Bay in CF? Not sure if serious....
   9. aberg Posted: September 13, 2012 at 12:28 PM (#4234800)
My prediction? Pain.

No! I came to this thread just to post that. Except I was going to say Paaainnnn.

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