2014 AL East Designated Hitter 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! , February 27th, we did third basemen! February 28th, we did shortstops! March 1st we did left fielders! March 2, we did center fielders! Yesterday, March 3, we did right fielders!

Today March 4, we do designated hitters!

STATISTICAL ANALYSIS

DH

NAME

TEAM

OPS

BABIP

WAR

AVG

HR

RBI

SB

1

Ortiz

RED SOX

0.959

0.321

3.8

0.309

30

103

4

2

Soriano

YANKEES

0.791

0.289

2.9

0.255

34

101

18

3

Lind

BLUE JAYS

0.854

0.324

1.8

0.288

23

67

1

4

Cruz

ORIOLES

0.833

0.295

1.5

0.266

27

76

5

5

Joyce

RAYS

0.747

0.251

1.7

0.235

18

47

7

SLEEVELESS ANALYSIS

1. David Ortiz – Red Sox

Until he fails (again), I won’t argue anymore.

2. Alfonso Soriano – Yankees

A full season in New York could yield 40 HRs and 20 steals.

3. Nelson Cruz – Orioles

Should be very good in hitter friendly Camden Yards.

4. Adam Lind – Blue Jays

I don’t know who the real Adam Lind is, but he could hit 30 HRs.

5. Matt Joyce – Rays

Also in a plotton, but 15 HRs and 10 steals can’t be overlooked.

AL EAST RANKS

3/3/2014

Rightfielders

Overall

Points

Red Sox

10

Red Sox

60

Yankees

8

Yankees

58

Orioles

5

Blue Jays

57

Blue Jays

5

Orioles

51

Rays

2

Rays

44

SUMMARY

My over impression is that the AL East dominates with their designated hitters. David Ortiz has proven he is just a beast who had a bump in the road, but has recovered and become not only the face of the 2013 World Series Champions, but possibly Major League Baseball. The Yankees brought back old friend Alfonso Soriano, once traded for A-Rod, to help replace A-Rod and solve their pathetic 2013 lineup. He was very good for them,  and should continue to be, especially not having to play the OF everyday. The Orioles signed Nelson Cruz on the eve of spring training and they have to be thrilled to get him, and his raw power, in what amounts to his last chance to have a great year and earn a big contract. The Blue Jays somehow revived Adam Lind’s career and benefited from his bat in the middle of their order. I only waver because of his rapid inconsistency. The Rays have almost always made the role of the DH a platoon and often times utilize it to give their regulars days off from the field. So they put less value on having an everyday bat in that spot. Matt Joyce is still a pretty good bat to put in there for 350-400 at bats, but he is not in the class of the rest of list who will see 500-600 at bats each solely at DH.

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