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The importance of a J.J. Hardy bounce-back


Frobby

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As we all know Gold Glove is a PR and popularity contest as much as a deserved award

Hardy's Gold Gloves were well-deserved on the merits. From 2012-14 (the years he won his Gold Gloves), Hardy was 2nd among major league shortstops in Fangraphs' defensive stat, with Andrelton Simmons (NL) the only one ahead of him. There is simply no argument that Hardy hasn't been an elite defensive shortstop in his time with the Orioles, though his injuries last year dropped him down a tad and pretty much took away his chance for another Gold Glove.

In my opinion, the defining trait of the 2012-15 Orioles has been the defensive excellence of the left side of the infield. Hardy has been a huge part of that, and we need him to do that this year, and also hit significantly better than he did in 2015.

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J. J. Hardy had an excellent June in 2015. I do believe that was the only month in the entire year that he was even close to healthy.

Since he did show that flash during a small sample size for 2015 (June) one could get their hopes up to a point that he could possibly do it for an extended period in 2016 if he is healthy for an extended period of time.

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The Importance of JJ Hardy might be more significant in St Louis if they were so inclined.

He's very important to us, IMO. If you told me nothing more than that Hardy would be healthy and play 140+ games, I'd peg our playoff odds at 50%. I think he's a huge factor in how our season will go.

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Am I the only one who thinks Machado covers most of the time at SS if/when Hardy hits the DL this year? And that eventually Machado will be the SS here? Perhaps as early as next year, but definitely the year after that.

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Am I the only one who thinks Machado covers most of the time at SS if/when Hardy hits the DL this year? And that eventually Machado will be the SS here? Perhaps as early as next year, but definitely the year after that.

My opinion is that it is Janish. This year. Manny is looking pretty thick for short to me.

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Am I the only one who thinks Machado covers most of the time at SS if/when Hardy hits the DL this year? And that eventually Machado will be the SS here? Perhaps as early as next year, but definitely the year after that.

I hope not to find out what happens if Hardy hits the DL. But if he does, I'd certainly like to have another good look at Manny as SS.

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J. J. Hardy had an excellent June in 2015. I do believe that was the only month in the entire year that he was even close to healthy.

Since he did show that flash during a small sample size for 2015 (June) one could get their hopes up to a point that he could possibly do it for an extended period in 2016 if he is healthy for an extended period of time.

In 2012, his wRC+ was 78. In 2014, his wRC+ was 90. He wasn't much of a hitter when he was healthy and 2-4 years younger. What makes you think he'll be a decent hitter now?

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In 2012, his wRC+ was 78. In 2014, his wRC+ was 90. He wasn't much of a hitter when he was healthy and 2-4 years younger. What makes you think he'll be a decent hitter now?

Everything is relative. If Hardy performed in 2016 as he did in 2014, I think we'd all be flipping cartwheels. The bar is very low after the team posted a .579 OPS at SS last year. There is potential for significant improvement there, and that improves the team as a whole. Let's say Hardy posts a .660 OPS. That's not good, but it notches SS up 80 points, and that's about 8 points for the team as a whole. That moves the needle pretty significantly.

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as I've said... as much as I love JJ, he has the biggest question marks coming into the year. I can adjust to the idea of not having a dominant starter, I can even deal with the questions in the outfield, but anyone in their right mind has to be worried about JJ. His durability and declining numbers are NOT reasons to be optimistic.

The idea that CD can play 3rd with Manny at SS and Trumbo at 1st doesn't upset me in the least.

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as I've said... as much as I love JJ, he has the biggest question marks coming into the year. I can adjust to the idea of not having a dominant starter, I can even deal with the questions in the outfield, but anyone in their right mind has to be worried about JJ. His durability and declining numbers are NOT reasons to be optimistic.

I have a different spin on this. Hardy has huge upside for this team compared to what he did last year. He doesn't have to be 100% of what he was in 2011-14 (13.4 fWAR, 14.5 rWAR over four years) to be significantly better than he was last year (0.0 fWAR, 0.0 rWAR). I should add that Hardy, after missing last April with injuries was playing at a better than 2 WAR pace from May though July, then had other injuries that limited him in the last two months and he dropped to a 0 WAR player. I fully expect that if he is able to stay reasonably healthy in 2016 -- and by "reasonably" healthy I don't mean perfect, I mean akin to 2014 when he played 140 games -- I think he'll be a 2+ WAR shortstop for us.

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I have a different spin on this. Hardy has huge upside for this team compared to what he did last year. He doesn't have to be 100% of what he was in 2011-14 (13.4 fWAR, 14.5 rWAR over four years) to be significantly better than he was last year (0.0 fWAR, 0.0 rWAR). I should add that Hardy, after missing last April with injuries was playing at a better than 2 WAR pace from May though July, then had other injuries that limited him in the last two months and he dropped to a 0 WAR player. I fully expect that if he is able to stay reasonably healthy in 2016 -- and by "reasonably" healthy I don't mean perfect, I mean akin to 2014 when he played 140 games -- I think he'll be a 2+ WAR shortstop for us.

Unfortunately, I don't get into the Baseball University side of things. You could explain WAR and FWAR to me until the cows come home. it still doesn't make sense. These things I do know...

1) Adam will swing at low and away on strike 3. It's what he does.

2) Matt Wieters thinks he's fast. No one tries to discourage him.

3) Schoop is gonna be great (I don't care what your WAR or FWAR says)

4) We have no speed and will be last in the majors in steals... again.

5) We will top the 200 HR mark again this year... maybe 250?

6) Chris Tillman will always be a #2 or #3 at best.

7) It's the intangibles that make baseball the greatest game in the world. I'll pay to watch Darren O'day against Jose Bautista 7 days a week and twice on Sundays.

8) Brian Matusz only worth to the Orioles is to get Big Papi out late in games.

9) Thing to watch.... CD's slump of 2014 was somehow the bad by-product of Nelson Cruz's success. Will he struggle with an effective Pedro Alvarez in the team (and no... Pedro is no Nelson Cruz)

and finally

10) I don't think it's possible for a player like JJ to stay healthy. Whether that means we rest him once or twice a week or more, but its gotta be lose to the end for him (again... I don't understand WAR or FWAR, so that really means nothing to me)

So at the end of the day, while I'd love to have a couple of .300 hitters... that's not happening, so we live with the way this team has been built, and I'm more than happy with that.

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