Saturday, November 06, 2004

Let's hope for a clone of King George

While I've been working on profiles of some of our players, I thought it would be good to look at more of our regular roster on the whole. We've seen so far that we've had some big problems with injuries (and we've got more injuries to go). Maybe there will still be a problem or two, and maybe we'll fill one or two of these positions with a free agent. But here's what we have in the stable today:

1B: Nick Johnson (.251/.359/.398, 7 HR, 5.7 VORP; but with major DL time)
2B: Jose Vidro (.294/.364/.454, 14HR, 28.7 VORP)
SS: TBD (maybe Izturis, though likely to return to minors)
3B: TBD (hopefully not Batista)
C: Brian Schneider (.257/.322/.399, 12 HR, 9.0 VORP)
LF: Brad Wilkerson (.255/.372/.498, 32 HR, 36.1 VORP)
CF: Endy Chavez (.277/.311/.271, 5 HR, 5.4 VORP)
RF: Juan Rivera (.307/.364/.465, 12 HR, 22.3 VORP)

OF: Terrmel Sledge (.269/.336/.462)
OF: Ryan Church (.175/.257/.238)
OF: Val Pascucci (.177/.297/.290)
IF: Maicer Izturis (.206/.286/.318)
IF: Henry Mateo (.273/.289/.318)

SP: Livan Hernandez (1.24 WHIP, 3.60 ERA, .314 OOBP, 58.3 VORP)
SP: Tomo Ohka (1.39 WHIP, 3.40 ERA, .328 OOBP, 14.2 VORP)
SP: Tony Armas, Jr. (1.54 WHIP, 4.88 ERA, .362 OOBP, 5.1 VORP, but see his profile)
SP: Zach Day (1.39 WHIP, 3.93 ERA, .337 OOBP, 21.7 VORP)

Closer: Chad Cordero (1.34 WHIP, 2.94 ERA, .315 OOBP, 24.4 VORP)
P: Luis Ayala (1.18 WHIP, 2.69 ERA, .307 OOBP, 27.2 VORP)
P: T.J. Tucker (1.33 WHIP, 3.72 ERA, .326 OOBP, 14.9 VORP)
P: Jon Rauch (1.28 WHIP, 2.81 ERA, .318 OOBP, 10.9 VORP)
P: Joe Horgan (1.43 WHIP, 3.15 ERA, .339 OOBP, 7.3 VORP)
P: Sun-Woo Kim (1.47 WHIP, 4.58 ERA, .356 OOBP, 6.5 VORP)
P: John Patterson (1.38 WHIP, 5.03 ERA, .349 OOBP, 5.0 VORP)
P: Joey Eischen (1.31 WHIP, 3.93 ERA, .316 OOBP, 1.6 VORP)
P: Claudio Vargas (1.55 WHIP, 5.25 ERA, .363 OOBP, 0.4 VORP)
P: Chad Bentz (1.66 WHIP, 5.53 ERA, .381 OOBP, -.05 VORP)
P: Gary Majewski (1.52 WHIP, 3.86 ERA, .362 OOBP, -1.7 VORP)
P: Scott Downs (1.62 WHIP, 5.14 ERA, .372 OOBP, -6.6 VORP)
P: Rocky Biddle (1.65 WHIP, 6.92 ERA, .380 OOBP, -19.3 VORP)

Okay, so we don't hit for much power, and our bullpen could be a heck of a lot better. But all in all, that's not bad for maybe $35M in committed salary, especially considering our payroll is likely to be bumped up from $41M. Even though I'm not optimistic, in this offseason we could attract a big name free agent who is fond of the market and wants to be the guy in the spotlight.

But, more likely, we'll be in the middle of the NL East pack this year, probably fourth, or maybe third if everything clicks. After that, though, we should have owners, and a few years where they're willing to spend on the team in order to make us competitive. I can only hope that the D.C. market is as good as anticipated in terms of bringing in the revenue, and that the new owners spend that revenue in the same spirit as George Steinbrenner.

Did you read that right? Yes, indeed. King George is a man I admire, because he reinvests every red cent the team brings in on the team. He's not interested in making money for his LPs, he's interested in the glory of the franchise. In fact, in the early days, he even made his LPs stroke checks. Well, maybe as a side effect, he's made the Yankees far more valuable than they ever would have been, but nonetheless, it is clearly a labor of love for him that I respect.

Particularly with a spending philosophy that is in line with the size and wealth of our market, it shouldn't be too long before we can double our payroll and become competitive. And with the Mets and Phillies likely to implode under their own mismanagement over the next few years, we might be the first ones to stop Atlanta's ridiculous streak as division champs!


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