Saturday, November 5, 2011
Where do Reds Free Agents Rank?
Cincinnati has multiple players from last year's roster heading to the free agent market, but how do they rank among the entire pool of MLB free agents? Well, two of them cracked the top 50 in Keith Law's recent piece ranking the best free agents available.
Veteran catcher Ramon Hernandez came in at #32 on the list while closer Francisco Cordero settled for the #44 spot -- Cordero's position on the list seems way too low to me when you look at some of the names ahead of him, but these rankings are really just for fun anyway, so what's it matter?
Here are excerpts taken from the post on both 36-year old players:
"There's little catching available on the free-agent market this winter, and saying Hernandez is the best of the lot is the faintest of praise. He's caught a total of 228 games over the past three seasons, and after a strong first half in 2011 (that was out of line with his career anyway), he wilted in just 38 games after the break, posting a .220/.287/.305 (BA/OBP/SLG) line before he was relegated to part-time duty in favor of heir apparent Devin Mesoraco. He's an above-average throwing catcher and fringy receiver who lives off mistakes and fastballs left over the plate. The state of catching across MLB is bad enough that he's still worth a one-year deal, even at his advanced age."
"Don't let the silly save stat fool you -- Cordero's contract was a loser for Cincinnati, as the value he provided wasn't close to the absurd salary the Reds paid him. Yes, he has the "closer" label, but he also has a diminishing ability to miss bats with a fastball that is down a full grade since he signed with the Reds. He could carve out a few more years as a setup man/middle guy who pitches more with his off-speed stuff, as he can't blow the fastball by hitters like he used to do."
And just for the record, Brewers slugger Prince Fielder and Cardinals star Albert Pujols topped the list at one and two.