Monday, July 14, 2003

Yarbage Mid-Season Review Part 3


Damian Miller
2003: 69 Games, .235 Avg. 6 HR, 26RBI, .318OBP/.376SLG/.694OPS, 57 K
2002: 101 Games, .249 Avg. 11 HR, 42RBI, .340OBP/.434SLG/.774OPS, 88 K

Paul Bako
2003: 32 Games, .190 Avg. 0 HR, 8RBI, .261OBP/.260SLG/.521OPS, 26 K
2002: 87 Games, .235 Avg. 4 HR, 20RBI, .295OBP/.329SLG/.624 OPS, 46 K

Catcher was one of the biggest concerns of the off season and the Cubs brought in two new catchers to replace Hundley and Girardi. Neither one of these two have done much in the way of offense. Miller’s OPS is way down this year, mainly because of his SLG. He had 20 RBI after May and only has 6 then. On the plus side Miller has only committed 2 errors on the season and he has 6 PB. He has thrown out 13 of 42 runners. Bako has thrown out 7 of 13, so that is a plus. While these two have not made the fans forget the offense wows, they have played well behind the plate. Miller has hit .333 in his last 7 games, so lets hope that continues.

First Base

Hee Seop Choi
2003: 58 Games, .242 Avg. 7 HR, 23RBI, .37OBP/.471SLG/.848OPS, 51 K
2002: 24 Games, .180 Avg. 2 HR, 2RBI, .281OBP/.320SLG/.601OPS, 15 K

Eric Karros
2003: 67 Games, .323 Avg. 8 HR, 23RBI, .386OBP/.503SLG/.889OPS, 20 K
2002: 142 Games, .271 Avg. 13HR, 73RBI, .323OBP/.399SLG/.722OPS, 74 K

First base has been a welcome addition this season. Karros and Choi have been an improvement over Fred “Stone Hands” McGriff. They have 15 HR and 46 RBI combined. Also they have only committed 6 Errors combined. If the Cubs fall out of contention then I would love to see Choi get the majority of playing time, but right now Karros has earned the time. When Choi went down on the DL, I was real worried, but Karros is hot. The biggest surprise is Karros’s SLG increase of .104. Choi is showing signs he is a rookie at the plate, but that is not a big shock. His numbers are pretty good. An OPS of .848 for a rookie is better than can be imagined, unless you are Albert Pujols. Just for your knowledge Pujols had a 1.013 OPS his rookie year. Now back to the Cubs, I think the platoon should continue right now. If will be interesting to see how much Choi plays if the Cubs are in contention with the way Karros is swinging the bat.

Second Base

Mark Grudszielanek
2003: 81 Games, .301 Avg. 2 HR, 19RBI, .359OBP/.400SLG/.759OPS, 47 K
2002: 152 Games, .271 Avg. 9HR, 50RBI, .301OBP/.304SLG/.665OPS, 89 K

Another part of the “Let’s get rid of Todd Hundley” trade, has Mark Grudszielanek playing solid baseball for the Cubs. He has done everything the Cubs have asked. He beat out Bobby Hill at the beginning of the year and has never looked back. The main problem is the fact that Mark is real streaky. He will go a week without hitting and then turn it on later. He has committed only 6 errors all year. He also has tuned 71 DP. He only turned 76 all of last season. The Cubs got the better end of the trade. I am not sure how the Dodgers could not get more than just Hundley else where, but hey sometimes it is all about salary.

Short Stop

Alex Gonzalez
2003: 90 Games, .247 Avg. 12 HR, 35 RBI, .304OBP/.426SLG/.730OPS, 67 K
2002: 142 Games, .248 Avg. 18 HR, 61 RBI, .312OBP/.425SLG/.737OPS, 136 K

Call him Mr. Game Winner. Alex has a flare for winning games, but other than his late game heroics his offense is average. Looking at last season, his numbers are very similar. He may hit for a little more power this season, but that is about it. Now the main difference is his defense is back. Last season he had 21 errors. He was known for his glove in Toronto, but he forgot it last season. This season he has 7 errors and he has turned 62 double plays compared to last years 84. He has played well enough, but it is clear that he will never be a star with the bat. The Cubs do not have any better options, and who would rather have batting in the 9th.

Third Base.

Ramon Martinez
2003: 65 Games(20 Starts), .287 Avg. 3HR, 23RBI, .351OBP/.421SLG/.772OPS, 20 K
2002: 72 Games, .271 Avg. 4HR, 25RBI, .335OBP/.414SLG/.749OPS, 26 K

Lenny F. Harris
2003: 65 Games(22 Starts), .167 Avg. 1HR, 7RBI, .238OBP/.211SLG/.449OPS, 17 K
2002: 122 Games, .305 Avg. 3 HR, 17 RBI, .355OBP/.411SLG/.766OPS, 17 K

I will only list these two right now because Bellhorn is gone and Jose has not had enough at bats with the Cubs. Looking at this you would think that Ramon would start everyday, but not in Dustyland. I was really hoping that Lenny might get cut or something, but why nightmare has become a reality as Harris is still a member of the Cubs. Looking at his 2002 stats, I am not sure if somebody did not abduct the real Harris. No major leaguer should be that bad. There are 4 pitchers that have a better OPS than Harris. At this point this is not a slump, but a trend. The Cubs need a third baseman. Ramon is probably better off subbing in and not starting. Enough has been said about it, so why beat a dead horse. Well, because Harris has an .238 OBP. A drunk fan from the bleachers could have an .238.

The Outfield is Next.