2014 AL East Shortstop Preview

bos_g_springts_600x400Hello folks baseball is back in Spring Training and it is time to start grading out the AL East. I’m only doing the AL East to assess where I think the Red Sox sit in their division. We are going to do this fairly scientifically. I’m going to grade each player, at each starting position. The team with the best player at the position gets 5 points, 2nd 4 points etc. Get it? Good, if not go away. Each position gets 2 lists, purely statistical and purely sleeveless. At the end the team with the most points from both lists will be the scientific favorite to win the AL East. Then I’ll wrap it all up and tell if I agree or disagree with science or if I’ll have my own sleeveless prediction.

February 24th, we did catchers! February 25th, we did first basemen! February 26th, we did second basemen! Yesterday, February 27th, we do third basemen!

Today, February 28th, we do shortstops!

STATISTICAL ANALYSIS

SS

NAME

TEAM

OPS

BABIP

WAR

AVG

HR

RBI

SB

1

Reyes

BLUE JAYS

0.78

0.315

2.2

0.296

10

37

15

2

Hardy

ORIOLES

0.738

0.263

3.4

0.263

25

76

2

3

Escobar

RAYS

0.698

0.281

3.9

0.256

9

56

4

4

Bogaerts

RED SOX

0.684

0.323

0.2

0.25

1

5

1

5

Jeter

YANKEES

0.542

0.208

-0.6

0.19

1

7

0

SLEEVELESS ANALYSIS

1. Jose Reyes – Blue Jays

Could produce 20 HR and 30 Steal numbers if healthy all year.

2. J.J. Hardy – Orioles

Raw power at a position where power is rare.

3. Xander Bogaerts – Red Sox

Seen him live at AAA potential to be GREAT at MLB level.

4. Derek Jeter – Yankees

Who knows what the retirement tour might bring, certainly not me.

5. Yunel Escobar – Rays

Could be very good, could implode at any moment.

AL EAST RANKS

2/28/2014

Shortstop

Overall

Points

Blue Jays

10

Blue Jays

36

Orioles

8

Orioles

31

Red Sox

5

Red Sox

30

Rays

4

Rays

28

Yankees

4

Yankees

25

SUMMARY

My overall impression is that even a partially healthy Jose Reyes is far and away the best shortstop in the AL East. JJ Hardy is good and a very solid power producer and is sneaky good defensively with 1 of the best arms in the game, but he is a far cry from Reyes. Xander Bogaerts is 1 of the best prospects in the game and could develop into 1 of the best players in the game, quickly. The Derek Jeter retirement tour will be in full swing and I’m not entirely sure he didn’t announce his retirement to make sure the Yankees didn’t pressure Jeter to move to 2nd in Cano’s absence or 3rd Arod’s absence. Escobar had a great year in Tampa, but I am fairly wary that he could have a meltdown now that he kept himself out of the spotlight for a year.

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