Thursday, July 01, 2010

An Appreciation of Adrian Beltre

Hat tip to Jon Weisman for the link to this fangraphs article looking at the statistics on former Dodger Adrian Beltre, for whom this Son still pines (nothing against Casey Blake; I just loved Beltre and was very sad to see him go after that monster 2004 season):

Beltre played six full seasons for the Dodgers. He put up an astonishing 10.1 WAR in 2004, but he was an asset those other years, too. From 1999-2003, Beltre averaged 3.3 WAR per season. And, while uttering Bill Bavasi’s name in Seattle still might produce dirty looks and suggestions of physically impossible acts, Beltre was worth every penny the Mariners gave him.

Safeco Field is a crippling environment for right-handed power hitters. Adjusting for league and park factors, Beltre’s bat was slightly above-average — his wRC+ as a Mariner was 102. That decent lumber was coupled with upper-echelon defense, as Beltre posted UZR/150 marks of +8.8, +19.2, -2.7, +13.4 and +21.2. The former Dodger racked up a combined 16.7 WAR with Seattle, a performance that our Dollars system valued at $67.3 million. [...]

Beltre’s deal with the Red Sox included a $5 million player option for the 2011 season, which increases to $10 million if he reaches 640 PA this season. Barring some unforeseen injury, the 31-year-old Scott Boras client will opt out and land himself a lucrative multi-year deal this coming winter, whether that be with Boston or elsewhere.

Adrian Beltre is in the midst of a sublime season that’ll almost certainly go down as his best since that monstrous ’04 campaign. But it’s not as though he has been a bust in between those high marks — this guy has always been good.

In his three years with the Dodgers, Blake has had WARPs of 1.2, 5.7, and is at 1.9 so far in the 2010 season. Beltre's WARPs are 3.7, 2.0, and 5.5 over those same periods. Beltre is clearly having a banner year in Boston relative to his career numbers, while Blake is just about where we'd expect relative to his career numbers.

So maybe it's a toss-up between the cupless one and The Beard--which in my book, given how much I liked Beltre, is a real endorsement for Casey Blake. In Beard We Trust.


Kyle Baker said...

Hooray for Dodger third basemen whose last names begin with "B"!

Mr. LA Sports Czar said...

I didn't think Wilson Betemit was that good.

Kyle Baker said...

Ron Bey was awesome, though!

Fred's Brim said...

One of my favorite Dodger games ever was this one when AB hit a homer off John Smoltz to tie it in the 9th and then hit another to win it in the 11th. I was sad that he left and was shocked when the M's scooped him up so quickly. I figured we'd at least have a shot to sign him back

Steve Sax said...

Don't you worry, FB. Colletti will go after Beltre in 2018

Kyle Baker said...

And sometimes Belliard.