Sunday, December 20, 2009

DeRosa Not Worth The Cost relayed a report by the Boston Globe saying that Mark DeRosa's asking price may have come down to $10 million. They opined:

…i like DeRosa in a platoon situation with Daniel Murphy, and i also can envision him in a part time role in the outfield…i would not look for him to be an everyday solution right now, but his versatility is something i feel the Mets could use, especially with all of the health issues that has plagued this team in recent years…
I respectfully disagree. Daniel Murphy had a rough season last year, hitting only .266/.313/.427. Mark DeRosa, on the other hand, was almost EXACTLY the same hitter, batting .250/.319/.433. They were nearly identical.

However, DeRosa is expensive and older. DeRosa is going to play this season at age 35. His career batting line is .275/.343/.424, although he had a nice little stretch from 2006-2008. The point is, he is old and getting older, and his absolute ceiling is that of a hitter with an 800 OPS.

Metsblog mentions DeRosa's versatility as a plus, but it is common knowledge that baseball players defensive value falls off a cliff in their 30's. Just because a guy PLAYS several positions, does not mean he plays them well. He went from a peak defensive value of +7 in 2006, to 1.7, to -0.9 and then finally down to -2.7 last season. He had a -8.7 UZR at third base last season and he was atrocious at second base the last time he played there - although his stats in the outfield were great in limited action. The stats back up what common sense and personal observation would imply - that DeRosa is a not one of those useful swiss-army-knife players anymore.

Basically, DeRosa would be relegated to the outfield or to first base, and he does not hit NEARLY well enough to justify a contract at either of those spots.

If the Mets want to bring in a platoon partner for Murphy, who struggled against lefties last year, there are other options, including many non-tendered players. Jack Cust has a career 864 OPS against righties and 58 home runs in the last two seasons. Ryan Garko has a .313 career average and 887 OPS against lefties. Another site speculated that Troy Glaus, a career .277/.399/.558 hitter against lefties, could be an option as well. All would be infinitely cheaper and more useful than DeRosa.

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