Categorized | Mark Timmons

It’s WAR!

It’s WAR!

It’s hard for me to understand why the Angels would not even sniff at Carl Crawford, who ultimately god $142 million over 7 years (roughly an average of $20.286 million a year) and then would turn around and trade for Vernon Wells, and agree to pay him an average of $21.5 million a year over four years.  Add in the fact that Wells is three years older than Crawford,  and that he has a career OB% of .329, while Crawford has a career OB% of .337 (compare to Juan Pierre’s lofty .341 OB%).  I know that Wells hits more home runs and is more of a “middle-of-the-order hitter,” but Wells over Crawford?  Maybe the Angels think as little of Crawford as I do.  I am glad the Dodgers couldn’t bid for Crawford.  $142 million for a lead-off hitter with a .337 OB%?  Come-on man!  I think that Crawford  is a very bad contract for Boston, and I think Wells could be a bad deal for the Angels as well.

The so-called experts are very polarized by thew Wells deal. Lyle Spencer of MLB.com likes the trade for both teams, noting that the addition of Wells gives the Angels “the makings of a dream outfield, ” while Keith Law of ESPN.com says that Wells is “absolutely the wrong player right now for the Angels, who have made one the worst desperation moves I can remember.”  Law points out that with all of the money Toronto is saving with Wells’ contract off the books, the Jays “could become very good, very fast.”  Interesting stuff!

We thought that paying Juan Pierre $8 or $10 mil was a bad deal.  Wow!  There is a difference in their “WAR Values” however.  Pierre is 11 seasons has a 13.9 WAR value,  In 9 seasons Crawfords is 20.1 and Well has a 25.6 WAR Value (albeit that much of Wells WAR Value was accumulated years ago).  WAR  is an elaborate formula to figure out a players value over a replacement player.  Evidently, the Angels valued Wells WAR more than anyting. WAR is a single number that presents the number of wins a player added to the team over what a replacement player (think AAA or AAAA) would add.

Here’s the scale for a season:

  • Less than 0 – Replacement
  • 0-2 – Reserve
  • 2+ – Starter
  • 5+ – All-Star
  • 8+ – MVP Caliber

For those of you who think WAR is not that much of a stat, here are the TOP 25 of all time in the WAR Department:
1     Babe Ruth      172.0
2     Barry Bonds    171.4
3     Ty Cobb     159.3
4     Willie Mays     154.7
5     Hank Aaron      141.5
6     Honus Wagner      134.7
7     Tris Speaker      132.8
8     Stan Musial     127.9
9     Rogers Hornsby     127.7
10     Eddie Collins      126.7
11     Ted Williams      125.0
12     Mickey Mantle      120.2
13     Lou Gehrig     118.3
14     Rickey Henderson 113.1
15     Mel Ott     109.2
16     Mike Schmidt     108.1
17     Frank Robinson     107.1
18     Nap Lajoie     104.2
19     Joe Morgan     103.5
20     Cap Anson      99.2
21     Alex Rodriguez     99.1
22     Eddie Mathews     98.2
23     Jimmie Foxx      94.0
24     Al Kaline      90.8
25     George Davis      90.8

Not a bad list.  I’d say that WAR pretty well reflects a players value.  In 2010, Josh Hamilton had a 8.0 WAR followed by Joey Votto at 7.4 WAR.  Both were MVP’s.  See how it works?

Let’s look at the Dodgers WAR in 2010 (complements of Fangraphs.com):

  • Furcal – 4.1
  • Blake – 2.8
  • Carroll – 2.4
  • Ethier – 2.2
  • Loney 1.1
  • Kemp – .4
  • Martin -2.1

Compare a few of the players with their WAR in 2009:

  • Kemp – 5.0
  • Blake – 4.6
  • Furcal – 3.0
  • Ethier 2.7
  • Loney 1.6

What can we glean from this?  The Dodgers SUCKED in 2010, but there is room for hope.  Raffy is capable of being an All-Star Caliber Player.  So is Kemp.  Andre Ethier has had his moments but he needs to step up to the next level. James Loney has a surprisingly low WAR, especially for a 1B.  HE NEEDS TO REALIZE HIS POTENTIAL THIS YEAR!  If not, he needs to go.  Casey Blake has been surprisingly valuable, regardless of what the naysayers spew.  In 2010, which I would classify as a bad year, he was #8 in WAR among 3B in the NL.  In 2009, he was #3 in the NL.

There is a lot of room for hope for 2011, but most of it boils down to Furcal, Blake, Ethier, Kemp and Loney.  The WAR needs to be ON!

About Mark Timmons

When you see the invisible, you can do the impossible!

15 Responses to “It’s WAR!”

  1. Jaydavis says:

    Who cares, it’s the angles.

  2. DodgerDude says:

    What’s your angle?

  3. ken says:

    Agreed – He is waste of money. Saving face rarely means saving money.

    So why is everyone putting Blake on a short leash?

    Imagine Ted’s WAR if he had not gone to war!

    The 2011 season boils down to Gwynn!

    Have the Dodgers hired a left handed batting practice pitcher yet for Ethier and Loney?

  4. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    Ethier vs. lefthanded pitchers:

    2006 = .351
    2007 = .279
    2008 = .243
    2009 = .191
    2010 = .233

    Obviously regressed against lefthanders (although better in 2010 than in 2009). Clearly there was a time when he was able to handle them. 2008 is the year in which Ethier started to show some power. It’s always seemed to me that he hits lefthanders when he has a plan, and takes them up the middle and to left. Since he’s demonstrated good power to center field, it seems to me that the solution might be something as simple has not trying to do too much with lefthanders, and hit the ball where it’s pitched.

  5. DodgerDude says:

    If he doesn’t turn that around he could become a platoon player.

  6. FrankieMac says:

    I’m not so sure that ‘Dre is all that he’s hyped up to be. If you put any stock in WAR he’s barely average… On his best year.

  7. Bill Russell says:

    Changing the subject for a minute, is Tony Reagins a puppet for Artie Moreno or is he just dumb? The more I think about yesterdays trade for Wells, the happier I become. (because I can’t stand the Angels). Why would you take on Vernon Wells contract? Wells is getting older and his defense is on the decline. He has struggled ever since he got the big contract. Everyone know’s he’s over paid and he’s never hit well at Mickey Mouse Stadium of Los Angeles. Reagins loses out on Beltre, and Crawford in the FA arena this year when all the experts projected they were the favorites to land these players. Some say that Ned is the worst GM in baseball but I for one would rather have him in charge then Tony.

  8. Furcal’s WAR was 4.1 in 97 games. It’d be nice if he could stay healthy for the entire season.

    • Mark Timmons says:

      Dustin,

      That’s a good point. Based upon those numbers, if you extrapolate it through 162 games, Raffy would have been the 10th Most Valuable Player in the League.

      Can he stay healthy. I remember a guy most Dodger fans didn’t think would stay healthy – Jason Werth!

  9. SpokaneBob says:

    Frankie, I think you saw the kind of player Ethier can be in the beginning of last year until he got hurt. Lets hope he can do it this year, all year long.

    Bill, I believe you really don’t like the Angels. I got to go to a couple of Angel games in Wrigley Field back in the day. The best one was against the Yanks when The Mick and Yogi went deep. I don’t remember who the other game was aginst. what sticks out in my mind about that game ( and I was near the Angel’s dugout) was Bill Rigney shouting #*!#**! at the home plate umpire.

  10. Bill Russell says:

    Did the Angels play the Cubs back before interleague play? Or did the White Sox play at Wrigley at one time? I remember preseason was in Palm Springs and they played the Cubs every year there. That must of been hell for the players finally making the show to have to ride the bus again from Arizona for 5 hours each way to play the Angels in the Spring. I guess that’s why the Angels finally moved to Arizona.

    • ken says:

      Gene Autry was one of the original Hollywood types that invested heavily in Palm Springs. the Angels held Spring training there from 1961 to 1992 at the old Polo Grounds. Autry fought the move to Tempe for many years. Baseball is not dead in Palm Springs. You can catch the California Winter League games on AM 920.

  11. SpokaneBob says:

    Bill,

    The Angels played in Wrigley Field in Los Angeles for a couple of years until they started sharing Dodger Statium. If you have ever seen an old B&W TV show called Home Run Derby, then thats the LA Wrigley. A really small bandbox where the Pacific Coast League Angels used to play. It was in a run down area of LA, where the residents would make some money by letting you park on their front yards during the game.

  12. Bill Russell says:

    I always thought it was called the Coliseum. I never knew it was referred to as Wrigley. If anything, they should have called it Fenway because of the short porch in LF. I was a Dodger season ticket holder in 2008 when they played the Red Sox there in March of 2008, but I gave my tickets away to a good customer. My client told me that they parked on someones front lawn for $25 bucks. The seats were right above the Red Sox dugout. Damn, I should have went just for the experience. I was too young when they played there for the two seasons before Chavez Ravine was built.

    Mark, when are you planning on going to Camelback. I will try to attend a few of the games when your there.

  13. SpokaneBob says:

    Bill the Coliseum is a different venue from Wrigley. Both are in poorer areas of LA. The Coliseum was built for the Olympics. I was 12 in 1958 and after going to one game (my first big league game) in ’58, I talked my parents into letting me take the bus from Highland Park to the Coliseum and in 1959 I made it to 23 games including the second all star game. General admission was only $1.50 and you could hang outside the exit tunnels from behind home plate and ask people who were leaving for their tickets and watch the last couple of innings in Box seats. Also, it was easy to hang out by the visiting teams bus and get autographs as the players came out and got on the bus.

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