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An argument to keep Patterson in 08


biggrthngibbons

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Although there is a lot of talk about the plethora of centerfielders available via free agency this coming offseason, it just occurred to me that keeping Corey Patterson may very well be our best option. I was teasing my girlfriend that she would have to find a new favorite player since Patterson would more than likely be gone after the season. When she asked why, I said it's because he can't hit. She then said "Well he can still field and run really well..." This got me thinking as to how valuable Patterson's defensive abilities actually are to this team. By referencing Baseball Think Factory, and a recent discussion on Runs Saved/150 games (essentially the defensive answer to Runs Created), Corey is not surprisingly, the best defensive centerfielder in the league today. What is surprising is how bad his replacement would actually be. If we examine what many consider three of the most eligible free agent centerfielders; Rowand, Hunter, and Jones, and take into account the size and length of their expected contracts, and compare them with Patterson, who, at the present time, has very little negotiating leverage with his dismal year at the plate, I have come to the conclusion that resigning Patterson to a two year contract would perhaps be the smartest thing we could do in the offseason.

Patterson, on average saves 14 runs per 150 games (rs/150) over a replacement level centerfielder. Compare this to Torii Hunter, who has 10 rs/150; Aaron Rowand who actually loses 5 runs (-5 rs/150) by just being in centerfield; and Andruw Jones, who, despite his reputation as a very good defensive outfielder, loses 8 runs (-8 rs/150). If you take the runs they save (or lose) into account along with the runs they create at the plate (RC), you could expect Andruw Jones to have an RC around 90-95, but also to lose 8 runs per year in the field, for an actually runs contributed to be around 85 (he's not getting any better defensively). Aaron Rowand can be expected to have an RC around 70, but lose about 5 runs in the field, contributing about 65 runs overall. If we had to sign a big name centerfielder, I would advocate for bringing in Torii Hunter who will have an RC around 80, but will also save 10 runs in the field, contributing around 90 runs per year.

The downfall to all of these players is the contracts they will likely command, and the age they will be when they expire. Rowand and Jones are both 30, and Hunter is 32. All will receive well over $10M per season, and more than likely sign deals that range between 4 and 6 years in length (unless Jones signs a one year deal to bolster his value after this season). Patterson, who is also only 28, can likely be had for a 2 year deal for about $3M per season, and can be expected to create about 60 runs per year at the plate, and save 14 per year in the field, contributing about 70-75 total runs.

So it looks like I'm going to kinda go against the grain on this one, and argue that Patterson is the most attractive option among free agent centerfielders, given what he can be expected to sign for. The money that we were supposed to throw at an overpriced centerfielder, should then be spent on Adam Dunn if he becomes a free agent after the season, or Carlos Zambrano, who would enable us to finally trade Penn/Olson/Cabrera, without worrying about whether or not they will develop into an elite pitcher for another organization.

For the sake of speculation, let's say Dunn remains a Red this season and is not able to become a free agent, and we outbid everyone for Zambrano. Let's also assume we are able to send a package including Dcab, Penn/Ray, and a Fiorentinoesque prospect to Cincy for Dunn (and an extension...), we would be left with a team resembling this:

Lineup:

Roberts, 2b

Markakis, RF

Tejada, SS

Dunn, DH

Millar, 1B

Mora, 3B

Payton/Huff, LF

Hernandez, C

Patterson, CF

Bench: House, Gibbons, Gomez, Payton/Huff

Rotation:

Bedard

Zambrano

Guthrie

Loewen

Olson/Burres

Bullpen:

Walker

Hoey

Olson/Burres

Bradford

Baez :(

(insert 2 minor league/random middle relievers here)

On paper, this looks pretty good... a little thinking outside the box and being agressive with the two big moves, and I think this may be a contender...

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Although there is a lot of talk about the plethora of centerfielders available via free agency this coming offseason, it just occurred to me that keeping Corey Patterson may very well be our best option. I was teasing my girlfriend that she would have to find a new favorite player since Patterson would more than likely be gone after the season. When she asked why, I said it's because he can't hit. She then said "Well he can still field and run really well..." This got me thinking as to how valuable Patterson defensive abilities actually are to this team. By referencing Baseball Think Factory, and a recent discussion on Runs Saved/150 games (essentially the defensive answer to Runs Created), Corey is not surprisingly, the best defensive centerfielder in the league today. What is surprising is how bad his replacement would actually be. If we consider what many consider three of the most eligible free agent centerfielders, Rowand, Hunter, and Jones and take into account the size and length of their expected contracts, and compare them with Patterson, who, at the present time, has very little negotiating leverage with his dismal year at the plate, I have come to the conclusion that resigning Patterson to a two year contract would perhaps be the smartest thing we could do in the offseason.

Patterson, on average saves 14 runs per 150 games (rs/150) over a replacement level centerfielder. Compare this to Torii Hunter, who has 10 rs/150; Aaron Rowand who actually loses 5 runs (-5 rs/150) by just being in centerfield; and Andruw Jones, who, despite his reputation as a very good defensive outfielder, loses 8 runs (-8 rs/150). If you take the runs they save (or lose) into account along with the runs they create at the plate (RC), you could expect Andruw Jones to have an RC around 90-95, but also to lose 8 runs per year in the field, for an actually runs contributed to be around 85 (he's not getting any better defensively). Aaron Rowand can be expected to have an RC around 70, but lose about 5 runs in the field, contributing about 65 runs overall. If we had to sign a big name centerfielder, I would advocate for bringing in Torii Hunter who will have an RC around 80, but will also save 10 runs in the field, contributing around 90 runs per year.

The downfall to all of these players is the contracts they will likely command, and the age they will be when they expire. Rowand and Jones are both 30, and Hunter is 32. All will receive well over $10M per season, and more than likely sign deals that range between 4 and 6 years in length (unless Jones signs a one year deal to bolster his value after this season). Patterson, who is also only 28, can likely be had for a 2 year deal for about $3M per season, and can be expected to create about 60 runs per year at the plate, and save 14 per year in the field, contributing about 70-75 total runs.

So it looks like I'm going to kinda go against the grain on this one, and argue that Patterson is the most attractive option among free agent centerfielders, given what he can be expected to sign for. The money that we were supposed to throw at an overpriced centerfielder, should then be spent on Adam Dunn if he becomes a free agent after the season, or Carlos Zambrano, who would enable us to finally trade Penn/Olson/Cabrera, without worrying about whether or not they will develop into an elite pitcher for another organization.

For the sake of speculation, let's say Dunn remains a Red this season and is not able to become a free agent, and we outbid everyone for Zambrano. Let's also assume we are able to send a package including Dcab, Penn/Ray, and a Fiorentinoesque prospect to Cincy for Dunn (and an extension...), we would be left with a team resembling this:

Lineup:

Roberts, 2b

Markakis, RF

Tejada, SS

Dunn, DH

Millar, 1B

Mora, 3B

Payton/Huff, LF

Hernandez, C

Patterson, CF

Bench: House, Gibbons, Gomez, Payton/Huff

Rotation:

Bedard

Zambrano

Guthrie

Loewen

Olson/Burres

Bullpen:

Walker

Hoey

Olson/Burres

Bradford

Baez :(

(insert 2 minor league/random middle relievers here)

On paper, this looks pretty good... a little thinking outside the box and being agressive with the two big moves, and I think this may be a contender...

God i hope we don't sign zambrano. He is a great pitcher and all but with the money he will get it would kill us to have him get hurt.

Besides i don't think Ramon will be here in a matter of weeks. I actually think that is a good thing. Everyone needs to remember the collapse of Javy. Catchers seem to go down hill that way. Sign Wieters and turn ramon into a couple good pieces.

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God i hope we don't sign zambrano. He is a great pitcher and all but with the money he will get it would kill us to have him get hurt.

Besides i don't think Ramon will be here in a matter of weeks. I actually think that is a good thing. Everyone needs to remember the collapse of Javy. Catchers seem to go down hill that way. Sign Wieters and turn ramon into a couple good pieces.

I definitely wouldn't mind seeing Ramon go, and wait for Weiters. A stop gap at catcher certainly couldn't hurt, considering Ramon's quick decline.

I would argue, however, that due to our abundance of pitching, an injury to Zambrano, while definitely harmful, definitely would not cripple a rotation that deep.

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Fully accepting what he brings to the OF, I think CPat is a viable contract for us to re-sign, no, to persue. Aggressively. He's on a down year hitting, but is working hard lately to amend that. And if he gets on base... he's... let's face it... one of THE biggest threats in baseball. Period.

His down hitting year just makes it easier for us. He has shown, here and in Chicago, that he can hit. If he hits, he will score. Period. He won't be near what Andruw or Ichiro (got) or Torii gets. Sign him!

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Fully accepting what he brings to the OF, I think CPat is a viable contract for us to re-sign, no, to persue. Aggressively. He's on a down year hitting, but is working hard lately to amend that. And if he gets on base... he's... let's face it... one of THE biggest threats in baseball. Period.

His down hitting year just makes it easier for us. He has shown, here and in Chicago, that he can hit. If he hits, he will score. Period. He won't be near what Andruw or Ichiro (got) or Torii gets. Sign him!

Hallelujah.... I just think, in the grand scheme of things, all of the superstar free agent centerfielders are marginal upgrades over Cpat and by comitting to a ludicrous contract for a vastly overrated player such as Andruw Jones, we will be dooming ourselves to another 5 years of mediocrity. We need to think outside the box people!

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Hallelujah.... I just think, in the grand scheme of things, all of the superstar free agent centerfielders are marginal upgrades over Cpat and by comitting to a ludicrous contract for a vastly overrated player such as Andruw Jones, we will be dooming ourselves to another 5 years of mediocrity. We need to think outside the box people!

I agree... Andruw would be a dream to me. Cuz he's the same jaw-dropping centerfielder Patterson is... but because he can HIT. :P For power and average AND on base. He's a total player, no doubt. But with a total pricetag, next year. Higher than we can afford to spend at this point... :(

WAG We could sign Corey for 3-15, 3-21 at most. Andruw would demand a LONG-term contract. 5-65? More?

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I agree... Andruw would be a dream to me. Cuz he's the same jaw-dropping centerfielder Patterson is... but because he can HIT. :P For power and average AND on base. He's a total player, no doubt. But with a total pricetag, next year. Higher than we can afford to spend at this point... :(

WAG We could sign Corey for 3-15, 3-21 at most. Andruw would demand a LONG-term contract. 5-65? More?

Andrew Jones has alot of wear and tear that has been put on his body. Same with Tori Hunter. CF's decline almost as rapidly as catchers as they get older (see Edmonds, Jim and Griffey, Ken.) Patterson was drafted by MacPhail, plays good defense and has the potential to hit. However, I think he is cheaper then the FA CF's and he has alot less wear on his body.

Again, as I said in a previous thread, with so much speculation about Ramon being shopped before the deadline, I wonder if this is what the FO told House to keep him?

Also, don't spend money on FA pitchers, pitchers are better to develop in the farm system, because they are not reliable. We should spend the money on some bats because it is easier to project their numbers and we need offense badly.

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Again, as I said in a previous thread, with so much speculation about Ramon being shopped before the deadline, I wonder if this is what the FO told House to keep him?

Off topic, but Ramon's pretty key to our pitchers...I think he's got a really good rapport with Bedard and Guthrie. I understand the reasons for trading him and I'm not entirely opposed to it. Just hope the pitching doesn't take a hit because of it...

And for the record, I'd like to keep Patterson.

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Off topic, but Ramon's pretty key to our pitchers...I think he's got a really good rapport with Bedard and Guthrie. I understand the reasons for trading him and I'm not entirely opposed to it. Just hope the pitching doesn't take a hit because of it...

And for the record, I'd like to keep Patterson.

Record duly noted - check! ;) I guess SG's still on board also, right? I mean, he did arrange the deal with davearm to bring him here! :rolleyes:

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I agree with this. CPat is definitely worth keeping at the right price. Even if the money is equal though, would he turn down a lowball offer from us for a lowball offer from his hometown (I think) Braves?

He only has to hit .260 to be force (assuming that his HR stroke comes back).

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Off topic, but Ramon's pretty key to our pitchers...I think he's got a really good rapport with Bedard and Guthrie. I understand the reasons for trading him and I'm not entirely opposed to it. Just hope the pitching doesn't take a hit because of it...

And for the record, I'd like to keep Patterson.

I take it with a grain of salt because of who said it, but Dempsey criticized Hernandez earlier this year and said that he has done a pretty poor job of managing the game this year. He said that he is more worried about throwing runners out (same criticism that was said about Pudge.) Like I said, take it with a grain of salt. Plus, isn't handling the pitcher's why Bako is up here?

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I take it with a grain of salt because of who said it, but Dempsey criticized Hernandez earlier this year and said that he has done a pretty poor job of managing the game this year. He said that he is more worried about throwing runners out (same criticism that was said about Pudge.) Like I said, take it with a grain of salt. Plus, isn't handling the pitcher's why Bako is up here?

Dunno, I think Bedard said something in his post game interview about how important Ramon is.

You really want to see what Bako's capable of in a full time job? ;)

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Dunno, I think Bedard said something in his post game interview about how important Ramon is.

You really want to see what Bako's capable of in a full time job? ;)

Actually that's not a bad idea, anyone here own a company and be willing to throw a boat load of money at him to make him give up baseball and get a regular job? Just not something where he has to handle fragile goods since he's prone to drop things once in a while! ;)

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