Saturday, October 18, 2008

Runs created by position - part 1

Earlier this week, I looked at how Tiger players ranked in runs created (RC) and runs created per game (RC/G) among 136 American League players with 300 or more plate appearances (PA) in 2008. Today, I will start comparing players by position. Position comparisons are often useful because some positions demand more of players defensively and thus their offensive expectations are somewhat lower. For example, catchers are not expected to create as many runs as first basemen and, on average, they don’t.


The catchers are listed in Table 1. The most productive catcher in the league was Joe Mauer with 6.9 runs created per game (RC/G). A whole run behind him in second place was Kelly Shoppach at 5.9 RC/G. Pudge Rodriguez was in third place at 4.9 RC/G, a big jump from 4.0 in 2007.


Brandon Inge finished 11th among 15 AL catchers with 3.7 RC/G. Next year, it is likely that Dusty Ryan and somebody else from outside the organization will share the catching duties in 2009. I'm hoping they can find a combination that will finish closer to 4.9 than 3.7. I also think Inge will need to do better than 3.7 next year if he is going to keep his starting job at third base next year.

Table 1: Runs Created by AL Catchers in 2008

Rank

Player

Team

PA

RC/G

RC

1

Mauer

MIN

633

6.9

101

2

Shoppach

CLE

403

5.9

59

3

Rodriguez

DET

328

4.9

42

4

Navarro

TB

470

4.7

57

5

Suzuki

OAK

588

4.5

67

6

Laird

TEX

381

4.4

43

7

Hernandez

BAL

507

4.3

57

8

Pierzynski

CHA

570

4.2

64

9

Olivo

KC

317

4.1

35

10

Barajas

TOR

377

3.8

39

11

Inge

DET

407

3.7

40

12

Varitek

BOS

483

3.4

44

13

Buck

KC

418

3.3

38

14

Johjima

SEA

409

2.9

33

15

Mathis

LAA

328

2.9

26



The league leading first baseman (Table 2 below) was Kevin Youkilis with 7.3 RC/G. Former Tiger Carlos Pena and Jason Giambi tied for second with 6.6 RC/G. Miguel Cabrera and Justin Morneau tied for 4th with 6.6 RC/G. If we look at total runs created, Morneau and Cabrera would be one and two.

In the prior three years with the Marlins, Cabrera averaged 8.3 runs per game. The AL is a tougher league but, now that he is settled in, I think Cabrera will be over 7.0 RC/G for the next few years and has the potential to be over 8.0 in any given year.


Table 2: Runs Created by AL First Basemen in 2008


Rank

Player

Team

PA

RC/G

RC

1

Youkilis

BOS

621

7.3

106

2

Pena

TB

607

6.6

95

3

Giambi

NYA

565

6.6

89

4

Cabrera

DET

684

6.3

108

5

Morneau

MIN

712

6.3

109

6

Davis

TEX

317

5.8

47

7

Garko

CLE

563

5.1

72

8

Kotchman

LAA

398

4.8

50

9

Overbay

TOR

630

4.8

76

10

Konerko

CHA

514

4.7

62

11

Millar

BAL

610

4.4

69

12

Swisher

CHA

588

4.2

64

13

Barton

OAK

523

4.2

56

14

Gload

KC

418

3.6

41



Ian Kinsler topped all AL second basemen with 6.8 RC/G in 2008 (Table 3 below). He was followed by Dustin Pedroia (6.5) and Brian Roberts (6.3). After a career high and league leading 7.3 RC/G last year, Placido Polanco dropped to 5.4 this year. He could rebound a bit next year but a 33 year old middle infielder who relies heavily on batting average can decline fast so I will probably be happy if he just maintains.

Table 3: Runs Created by AL Second Basemen in 2008


Rank

Player

Team

PA

RC/G

RC

1

Kinsler

TEX

583

6.8

96

2

Pedroia

BOS

726

6.5

114

3

Roberts

BAL

704

6.3

107

4

Inglett

TOR

385

5.4

52

5

Polanco

DET

629

5.4

85

6

Iwamura

TB

707

5.2

90

7

Lopez

SEA

687

5.1

91

8

Kendrick

LAA

361

4.9

46

9

Grudzielanek

KC

360

4.9

45

10

Carroll

CLE

402

4.9

48

11

Ramirez

CHA

509

4.6

64

12

Casilla

MIN

437

4.5

51

13

Cabrera

CLE

418

4.3

46

14

Ellis

OAK

507

4.2

56

15

Cano

NYA

634

4.0

69

1 comment:

  1. Grandy is going to China... pass it on!

    ReplyDelete

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