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Monday, August 01, 2005


Reggie, Can You Hear Me?

I mentioned earlier that maybe the Cards we're so dumb standing pat at the deadline after all, well at least in terms of offense. It's a fairly controversial statement, and somewhat contradictory to what I have said here and at other Cards' sites before. I really thought the Cards should try to get an OF, preferably a young guy to be there when Larry Walker was done after the season. I think, given the performance of Birds in the wake of the injuries (remember, since Sanders went down the only series we lost was that last one against the Cubs) and the capable playing of John Rodriguez, and the decent bench bench role Gall has played so far, the Cards will be okay. There are lots of reasons, but Sanders is the reason I want to focus on today. In the case of offense, Sanders makes a big difference for the Cards. He brings the hits, the power and run creation that the Cards lack, even with their solid role-players filling in for all the injured folks. Let's go to the stats for Reggie "The Colonel" Sanders. VORP: 25.6 EqR: 44.5 RAR (Runs Above Replacement): 21.3 WARP3 (wins above replacement for 162 games): 4.2 Clearly, those all indicate the offensive production that Sanders brings to the team, but I want to explore another stat that comes via Beyond the Box Score (one of the coolest baseball sites on the web, much more interesting content than ESPN and not a bit of the cost). Net Runs Above Average (NRAA) is a useful stat (here for an explanation) in this situation to explore what Reggie's bat could have contributed to this lineup over the last 15 games he has missed. NRAA/Game: 0.286 NRAA/100 Games: 28.6 Extrapolate that per game rate to the 15 games Reggie has missed since July 15 and the Cards would have an additional 4.3 runs. Okay, that doesn't sound so impressive, until you consider that 4 of the six losses were either by one run or extra innings (or both). On top of that, consider the much ballyhooed problems against lefties and look at Reggie's line against "funny" pitchers, .295/.354/.591. Okay, now take Reggie's numbers and consider Rolen, Molina and Walker back in the line up...now you're just worried about the pitching again, huh? Yeah, me too. [especially watching Marquis tonight, how can anyone be against trading this guy?] So, maybe Jocketty's lack of activity isn't so disconcerting after all, and waiting it out for the injured Cards to mend their broken wings is plausable. However, the nature of some of these injuries and the lack of info surrounding them concerns me. Am I wrong to be a little worried about the injuries, or just making too much of the cautiousness given their cushion in the standings? While I sure hope J-Rod's the real deal, are you confident taking the lineup as is into the playoffs against any team not in the NL West? I'm still thinking that Jock may yet make a move. I have a lot of confidence in the batting lineup IF we get three out of four back in good health. Now, let's go worry about the pitching, sheesh!
Don't sweat it... the 'Stros will win the wild card, the Cards face the "winner" of the mild, mild West; while Houston and Atlanta go toe-to-toe in a Pier Sixer. The Birds feast on the left-overs in the NLCS...
I think you're right. BUT...an extra hand (left) would be nice too.
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