Cubs Potential Offseason Targets: Randy Winn or Marlon Byrd
I had to take a break from the series last week cause of that annoying paying job that I jeopardize every day spending way too much time here on TCR. So I'm gonna double up the efforts and today we look at some more potential center field candidates. Let's start with Randy Winn.
|TBD (5 yrs)||519||2047||1836||264||513||94||28||24||182||80||46||165||347||.279||.342||.400||.743||95|
|SFG (5 yrs)||666||2799||2533||343||735||169||18||51||262||73||20||209||367||.290||.345||.432||.776||100|
|SEA (3 yrs)||416||1799||1612||233||462||96||11||31||193||56||18||131||259||.287||.345||.417||.762||104|
|AL (8 yrs)||935||3846||3448||497||975||190||39||55||375||136||64||296||606||.283||.343||.408||.752||99|
|NL (5 yrs)||666||2799||2533||343||735||169||18||51||262||73||20||209||367||.290||.345||.432||.776||100|
It's gonna be hard to get excited about a guy with a .262//318/353 slash line last season. You can't even attribute it to an unlucky BABIP as it was .314 last year. No, his power disappeared hitting just two home runs after a healthy stretch of double digits. He did hit a measly 1.4% of HR/FB which is Ryan Theriot 2007/2008 low, so maybe there's a little bounceback (7.8% in his career albeit steadily declining).
Defensively, his UZR remains excellent over the last few seasons, as does his Rate2 and the Fan's Scouting Report considers him above average. Unfortunately most of that has been in right field and with the declining stolen base numbers you have to think he may not have the range for center, even in the cozy Wrigley Field confines.
While the novelty of a reunion between the player the Rays traded to get Lou Piniella and Lou would be a neat angle for the papers, I assume the Cubs will pass on the soon-to-be 36 year old. Despite his switch-hitting ability and potential leadoff qualities, his stolen base numbers are merely okay and he only walks 8% of the time and sees well under 4 pitches per plate appearance, so I don't think this would be much of a match for the Cubs.
|PHI (4 yrs)||256||982||889||136||241||43||6||13||79||13||5||68||173||.271||.332||.377||.709||86|
|TEX (3 yrs)||377||1515||1364||196||402||88||14||40||212||20||9||107||248||.295||.352||.468||.820||112|
|WSN (2 yrs)||152||472||413||48||101||23||3||7||44||8||4||40||94||.245||.318||.366||.683||82|
|NL (5 yrs)||408||1454||1302||184||342||66||9||20||123||21||9||108||267||.263||.327||.373||.701||85|
|AL (3 yrs)||377||1515||1364||196||402||88||14||40||212||20||9||107||248||.295||.352||.468||.820||112|
The rumors flooded the TCR newsroom yesterday (i.e. Google Reader) with the Cubs targeting Marlon Byrd as their potential new center fielder. When I made a cursory list of guys I might look at it in this series, Byrd was on the radar as a potential 4th outfielder, but leave it to Jim Hendry and the Cubs to make him a top priority.
Anyway, Byrd was a top prospect in the Phillies system, one of the top prospects in the game at the time, but fizzled out before the Phillies gave up on him and moved him to the Nationals for Endy Chavez. It didn't go much better for him there, but then Texas gave him a shot and whether it was Rudy Jamarillo or the Ballpark or fate, he bounced back with three solid, albeit unspectacular seasons in Texas.
Home: 309/375/522 with a HR every 27.20 AB
Road: 281/321/414 with a HR every 45.60 AB
vs. LHP: 277/336/462 with a HR every 28.93 AB
vs. RHP: 302/359/470 with a HR every 36.89 AB
It isn't like Wrigley isn't friendly as well, but those home/road splits have to be a little worrisome. His lefty vs righty splits aren't too pronounced, actually showing a bit of a reverse split so the Cubs need not worry about matchups too much.
Now one of the things the Cubs are said to be looking for is a run-producer/RBI guy and Byrd did have some decent RBI totals the last 3 years, particularly relative to his plate appearances. That included driving in 17.9% of the runners on base when he got up in 2009 which is an above average mark along with 18.4% in 2007, but just 12.5% in 2008, so you can see how volatile and unreliable hitting with runners on can be.
Defensively, he had a UZR/150 of 10.9, 10.9 and -2.8 over the last three years while bouncing around all three outfield spots, so it's tough to say from that if he'll be much of an improvement in center field. BP is kinder to him in LF and RF (109 and 107) then in CF( 95) for his career using Rate2, but it all suffers from small sample size issues as does UZR. The Fan's Scouting Report seemed to consider him as just a bit above average over the last three years.
He did walk an abysmal 5.5% of the time in 2009 which isn't too far off from his 7.5% career mark...both of which are below the standards I'd like to see the Cubs employ. The Cubs pursuit of Byrd shouldn't come as too much of a shock as they tried to acquire him for Matt Murton last season but were rebuffed, so obviously they've believed in skills for awhile. I guess we'll see how this unravels, but I'd probably prefer Mike Cameron on a one year deal (if that is in the cards) over Byrd and a likely multi-year deal, but I don't think we know the market yet for either player.
Check out Arizona Phil's Top 15 Cubs Prospects and enter our TCR Free Agent Frenzy Contest.
2nd in defensive WAR, NL.
6th in NL in RBI
Go complain about something else, like, "they never play good against the good teams", or some other shit.
Addy really has trouble breaking through .250 BA -- after his hot streak got him to .251, he has gone 1-for-17.
Thank goodness for Jansen's 2 WP on Friday -- otherwise this would have been a sweep.
There seems to be a direct correlation with overconfidence in the Cubs offense against mediocre/young pitchers and really poor offense against mediocre/young pitchers. So, let's fear the Pirate pitchers!
Rizzo due for a power surge -- one HR in August so far. He truly does hit them in bunches.
Sometimes I'm not as supportive of Cahill as maybe I should be. There, I said it.
Rough 8th inning all around -- HBP, Cahill error, Javy's poor decision.
Oh well - given that the Cubs didn't look like they were going to score, it's better to lose in 9 innings, save the bullpen and get changed for the PJ trip home.
Baez still learning
heyward with his 3rd multi-hit game since the all-star break (all in august)...2nd in the past 3 games during his 7 game hitting streak.
he's gone from flirting with a sub-.300 ob% to nearing .310 ob% in 3 games (1 game was just a 1 for 1 pinch hit appearance). all 5 hits in the past 3 games have come in a row...neat.
stewart with 7Ks through 3ip...of course.
that 10-13 mph difference in his fastball/change is working today...and they're swinging at his crappy slider.
brock stewart...steven brault...fun times for the cubs hitters vs allegedly competitive teams...maybe.
Maddon would have started three lefties against the Dodgers, Montgomery, Zastryzny and Lester, except that he doesn't have the juice to do that. No manager does. Maddon has a boss, Epstein (and probably Hoyer, too), who gave him a starting rotation of five guys including Hammel. Maddon was asked yesterday about the starting group for next year and basically said, Not my call, that's why I drive away in my RV in the summer and occasionally check in, etc.
video of Maddon.
always nice that he actually tries to honestly answer questions. Does mention that he wanted to give Zastr? a chance in a meaningful spot rather than a mop-up role.
#Cubs Maddon: "I'm not going to make up an excuse for why I did what I did. It has nothing to do with lack of confidence" ... "It was the right thing to do today based on what I saw, what their lineup looked like and Rob Z.'s availability." #Cubs
Hammel not particularly understanding of getting pulled out...as he should. Be curious what Maddon had to say. All I can think of is is keeping arms fresh and maybe wanting to see if Zastr? is worth considering for the playoffs and how he'd do against the Dodgers.
Heyward, Russell, Baez, Bryant, Ross in particular...although Bryant's a bit hard to judge with all the positions.
Fowler and Rizzo in the top half of the NL for their positions as well (per fangraphs)...Zobrist right at the halfway cutoff for 2b in the NL.
I'm sure some luck is involved too, but the Cubs and Maddon knew what they were doing.