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The Real 2012 AL MVP

    • 10 posts
    September 8, 2017 3:09 AM PDT

    Mike Trout? Miguel Cabrera? Please. Sure, numbers and metrics matter (at least those I selectively use to make my case based on what I decide to argue beforehand). But when want a player who has actually made the improvement in his teams (probably) succe sful playoff run, there is just one option for the 2012 American Leagues Most helpful site: Kevin Youkilis.

    Okay, Ill admit it: the title and first paragraph are just Mike Remmers Jersey meant to grab attention. I don't really think that Youkilis should be the 2012 AL MVP. However, Youkilis has had a big effect around the White Sox since being coming over from Boston at the end of June. When the current standings hold (White Sox three games ahead of the Tigers), one could reasonably reason that Youkilis has been the main difference the American League Central championship this year.

    Brent Morel was supposed to be the White Sox third baseman this year. Sure, he was mostly a terrible hitter this year, but during the last month of this season, went on a Cistulli-baffling tear that may have convinced the White Sox to give him another chance. The kids were going to play. Morel got 125 plate appearances that made his terrible 2011 (.245/.287/.366, 72 wRC+) look utterly appealing: .177/.225/.195, 11 wRC+. It's unlikely that Morel was or is that horrible, and also the back strain that ended up sending him towards the disabled list might have had something to do with it. However, given his prior performances both in the majors and minors, it had been hardly encouraging.

    Either way, the White Sox decided they could not abide Morels performance, and near the end of May signed Orlando Hudson, who was simply released by the Padres. Hudson had never played third base in the majors, however the White Sox were pretty desperate. Hudsons bat have been dropping off the last few years, but it looked completely dead the first few months of the season for that Padres (.211/.260/.317, 59 wRC+). It had been a small sample, but the Padres understandably decided there was no point to waiting around for Hudson to rebound when they were rebuilding. Leaving the Padres park did not help Hudson much, however, as he was just barely much better than Morel: .182/.256/.281 with a 39 Taylor Heinicke Jersey wRC+ for that White Sox while playing mostly third base.

    We do not reiterate to talk about the whole Youkilis-in-Boston saga. The White Sox basically got him for a back of the rotation arm/middle reliver (Zach Stewart) and a utility player (Brent Lillibridge). The Red Sox picked up a big chunk of the remainder of Youkilis 2012 salary, too. Youkilis has been very good, for that White Sox. Since visiting the South Side, Youkilis has hit .234/.360/.460 (121 wRC+) and put up 1.4 WAR. As they did look mostly bad in his time using the Red Sox this year, if you take a look at Youkilis hitting numbers using the White Sox this year, they look much like those he set up in 2011 in Boston. In fact, this year compared to 2011, Youkilis is actually walking many striking out le s while hitting for additional power (his BABIP is down). This isn't to get involved with the Red Sox side of things, but simply Jalil Carter Jersey to notice that although there were some troubling signs, there is also lots of causes of the White Sox to po se s confidence in Youkilis capability to play at something similar to his 2011 performance.

    So just how more valuable has Youkilis been compared to White Sox alternatives? Obviously, it doesnt simply work to add in the WARs of Hudson and Morel, and subtract that from Youkilis WAR in his time with the White Sox (although that adds up to about three wins, which may have been convenient for making the situation that the Youkilis trade was the important thing to Chicagos divisional title). We must look at what Hudson and Chris Doleman Jersey /or Morel may likely did had they literally rest of the season compared to Youkilis.

    Normally I'd use ZiPS RoS projections with this, however this late in the season, the listed lines perform some funny things. And so i uses Oliver true talent projection for 2012. Finances Youkilis .356 wOBA for that White Sox, we dont need his true talent with this hypothetical exercise thats playing time he's already received. Its Morel and Hudson that are the counter-factual cases here (and yes, I understand that Hudson played some following the Youkilis trade, this is not meant to be that precise). Oliver has Morels true talent wOBA as .278. Now, Morel may very well be much better than Youkilis with the glove, but even over just half of a season, the main difference from a .278 wOBA and a .356 is all about two wins. Oliver has Hudsons true tlaent wOBA at .311 about a make an impre sion on 1 / 2 of a season. And that i doubt that Hudson is really a lot better than Youkilis at third, at least over just 1 / 2 of a season. (Ill spare you the information on Eduardo Escobars Oliver projection).

    This sort of counter-factual baseball history is fraught with problems: the uncertainty of projections, timing of events, other moves Chicago could have made, and so on. However, scoring more runs constitutes a team more likely to win. Having Youkilis on the team only for half of a season probably has given the White Sox at least one more win in the standings compared to what they would have had with the otherwise. That won't appear to be much, but that is is a pretty big short-term upgrade compared to most mid-season trades. Sure, the White Sox are up by three Adrian Peterson Jersey games now, so Youkilis is not the sole difference. Their lead may also get bigger in last few times of the season (it could also shrink). However, although it is clearly silly to point out that Kevin Youkilis has been probably the most Valuable Player within the American League in 2012, that trade does have a claim to being best short-term trade of year.