• Ellsbury Vs. Cano

    Posted by on December 19th, 2008 · Comments (12)
    Player	 OPS+	PA	Age	G	BB	SO	BA
    Ellsbury  87	609	24	145	41	80	.280
    Cano	 86	634	25	159	26	65	.271
    

    Looking at last year’s stats for Jacoby Ellsbury and Robinson Cano got me wondering…are there as many fans in Red Sox Nation down on Ellsbury as there are fans in Yankeeland who are down on Cano? If not, maybe it’s time for Sox fans to stop raving about Ellsbury?

    Comments on Ellsbury Vs. Cano

    1. OnceIWasAYankeeFan
      December 19th, 2008 | 1:46 pm

      Ellsbury stole 50 bases at an 82% success rate. In four out of six months, he hit .280 or better. He scored 98 runs. He excelled defensively. He hit 9 home runs, which was about double what most people projected.

      No one in their right mind expected him to perform as he did in September and October of 2007 over the course of his first full season.

      Most importantly, no one saw him dog it on the field, ever, and no one has suggested that he is lazy or unmotivated. There is no reason to be down on him – unless he regresses in 2009 instead of improving.

    2. MJ
      December 19th, 2008 | 1:48 pm

      Interesting question/perspective. If I’m a Yankee fan, I’d say this is a damning indictment of Cano, reduced to being compared with Jacoby Ellsbury.

      Red Sox fans should hope that Ellsbury shows what Cano showed in 2006 and 2007. But if he stays exactly the way he is, then he’s a serviceable starter, if not a bit fringy, and certainly no huge detriment to the overall construction of their ballclub. You just bat him 9th and play him for his speed and defense.

    3. Raf
      December 19th, 2008 | 2:02 pm

      I think a study like this needs to go deeper into the numbers. Especially in the context of Cano putting up back to back 120+ OPS seasons.

      I don’t think members of RSN are as down on Ellsbury because this was his 1st year as a FT player. Yanks fans are down on Cano because he had a miserable 2008 after having 3 pretty good seasons in the bigs.

    4. Justin
      December 19th, 2008 | 2:07 pm

      The first two posts lay it out pretty well. We’re talking about expectations. Ellsbury was expected to steal tons of bases, play good defense and hit for a decent average. He pretty much lived up to those expectations, though I have seen plenty of people disappointed that he didn’t walk more.

      Cano, meanwhile, was supposed to be one of the best second basemen in the league, hit for a high average and play good defense. Instead, his season was an EPIC FAIL on each and every one of those counts.

      Honestly, though, this is pretty much what we have to expect from Cano. If he’s not going to start taking walks, which appears to be the case, then his success is going to be tied up in his batting average. It would be nice if he didn’t let his offensive streakiness affect his defense, but he evidently does. And so this is what we get. He’s going to have really good stretches, and he’s going to have really bad stretches. We just have to hope the good stretches outnumber the bad ones.

    5. OnceIWasAYankeeFan
      December 19th, 2008 | 2:08 pm

      I have a hard time believing that this is all we’ll see from Ellsbury. But I’d say even then he still has significant value.

    6. Justin
      December 19th, 2008 | 2:10 pm

      Alternatively, what Raf said.

    7. MJ
      December 19th, 2008 | 2:15 pm

      I have a hard time believing that this is all we’ll see from Ellsbury. But I’d say even then he still has significant value.
      —————
      I agree that if this is all Ellsbury ever becomes, there’s still value in him for as long as he’s fast enough to steal bases and cover the OF. There’s certainly nothing wrong with being that type of player.

      I don’t know how much more he can improve since, really, his MiLB numbers never indicated that he’d have much pop. This is who he is. It’s fine. It’s not All-Star caliber but it’s certainly enough to be a starter in the big leagues. RSN fans shouldn’t be too down on him, except for the few that thought 2007 was the realistic picture. Most intelligent folks knew enough not to get that carried away.

    8. butchie22
      December 19th, 2008 | 2:31 pm

      As I’ve said before Ellsbury is an overrated player. I did like that catch he made in Toronto where he smashed his face into the wall, that was a gritty play. He underperformed in the post season and was benched accordlingly. The sample set is too small to make a correct determination on how well he will play, I need to see another season or two. He’s still a tadpole and might become a much better player (he might not) BUT he’s no Dustin Pedroia.

      Speaking Of Pedroia, Cano looks like such a lax player doesn’t he? Robby has talent but maximizes it. Pedroia reminds if the undervalued players that Billy Beane utilized in Moneyball. Pedroia is short,not very built but gives 150% of himself at the plate and at bat whereas Cano simply is not playing to his potential.

      don’t think members of RSN are as down on Ellsbury because this was his 1st year as a FT player. Yanks fans are down on Cano because he had a miserable 2008 after having 3 pretty good seasons in the bigs. Quote from Raf
      Cano has a bigger sample set to draw from and it is scary to think that Cano might have regressed because of Bowa’s departure from the Yanks. Does Cano really need to be motivated with the likes of Jeter, Arod, Damon etc around? I remember a story that Michael Kay told on his radio show about Cano. Before he signed his fat contract, Cano was out everyday with Arod and Melky during Arod’s infamous workout. When he signed the fat contract, you only saw Melky with Arod. I mean he seems to be dogging it, doesn’t he? Not only from stats BUT scouting his play on the field as well.

    9. OnceIWasAYankeeFan
      December 19th, 2008 | 3:26 pm

      I don’t know how much more he can improve since, really, his MiLB numbers never indicated that he’d have much pop. This is who he is. It’s fine. It’s not All-Star caliber but it’s certainly enough to be a starter in the big leagues.

      ______________________________

      This is the big question. Theo has been saying that power develops last and there are those in and out of the organization who projected him to have Damon-type power numbers eventually. So I checked, and in their first two seasons, we get:

      Damon:
      192 games, 9 HRs, 52 XBH

      Ellsbury:
      178 ganes, 12 HRs, 49 XBH

      Its interesting to note that it took Damon three years to reach an OPS of 100, but thereafter, he sunk below 100 only three times.

      If his development in the majors mirrors old JD, then Ellsbury will have been a very smart draft choice. Damon did show a bit more pop in the minors, and was younger when he reached the majors, but Jacoby is actually pretty ripped when you see him hit BP in his warmup gear.

    10. butchie22
      December 19th, 2008 | 3:45 pm

      If his development in the majors mirrors old JD, then Ellsbury will have been a very smart draft choice. Damon did show a bit more pop in the minors, and was younger when he reached the majors, but Jacoby is actually pretty ripped when you see him hit BP in his warmup gear. Quote

      Projections in no way explain the attendant hype this particular player has received. Compared to Pedroia ( who deserved the MVP point blank), Ellsbury is a nice player but nothing more at this point. Theo and CO have drafted wisely so we’ll see BUT as it stands Ellsbury didn’t cut it last postseason and that surely changes the picture on Ellsbury. With Ellsbury, I’m waiting to see if he becomes Melky or becomes Damon but right now he’s not a superstar like Pedroia.

    11. Justin
      December 19th, 2008 | 3:50 pm

      With Ellsbury, I’m waiting to see if he becomes Melky or becomes Damon but right now he’s not a superstar like Pedroia.
      ===============================

      Ellsbury has a skill set far superior to Melky’s. I don’t think he’ll end up being Johnny Damon. But I seriously doubt he ever has a season as bad as the one Melky just turned in. He’s a solid player, and I wish he were on the Yankees.

    12. December 19th, 2008 | 6:46 pm

      [...] More from CC & AJ …..  /  Ellsbury vs Cano [...]

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