Here is the introduction to the DMB (Diamond Mind Baseball) Trade Value series.
40) 2B Ian Kinsler (R) – Age: 28
Quick Take: One of the best hitters at a thin position (2B) when healthy, which has been a major factor over his entire career. His career high in games was in 2009 with 144 and in 2010 he has provided solid overall value with his stick (.359 wOBA) and glove (0.2 UZR). His power is way down (.235 ISO in 2009, .120 in 2010) but can injuries be to blame for the power outage? Another guy who needs to prove he can stay healthy and put up consistent power numbers.
DMB PRO: good bat and glove at a weak position
DMB CON: injury prone, declining power
39) 3B/RF Jose Bautista (R) – Age: 30
Quick Take: Having a career year with his first real fulltime gig with the Toronto Blue Jays, his power has been massive (.351 ISO!!) and he leads the league in HRs (42) and even walks a ton (14.9 BB %), bonus is the positional value as he is rated at 1B, 3B and RF. Not a great defender at any position, questions are already being raised whether he can produce anywhere near the same level in 2011, my guess is not, but until that is proven otherwise, given his power and positional versatility he is a valuable player going forward.
DMB PRO: huge power/patience, plays multiple positions
DMB CON: low average, a fluke season? Skydome has been launching pad this year.
38) C Matt Wieters (S) – Age: 24
Quick Take: So obviously he can’t walk on water as we were led to believe however the kid is only in his first full season at the major league level at 24 years of age and playing the toughest position in the sport in the toughest division in the game. While some of the prospect lustre is firmly off Wieters, there is still a lot of time left for him to develop and we can’t just forget the 600 or so god like PAs from the minor leagues. This is purely a speculative play for a weak position over the next 5-6 years and though I am still buying stock in this guy we will need to see marked improvement next year.
DMB PRO: switch hitting catcher, solid potential at the thinnest position in the game
DMB CON: lacklustre overall offensive numbers thus far.
37) SP Justin Verlander (R) – Age: 27
Quick Take: His K-rate has normalized in 2010 (8.5 K/9) after a sensational 2009 (10.0 K/9) and his walks are also slightly up, but I am still a huge believer in Verlander going forward and he is still among the game’s best starting pitchers and is only now entering his prime seasons. Armed with one of the game’s best arsenal of pitchers, all of his pitches (fastball, curve, change and slider) show a positive run value (per 100 pitches thrown).
DMB PRO: solid K rate, consistent, doesn’t possess huge splits (good vs. L and R)
DMB CON: plays in a pitcher’s park, decreasing K’s a slight concern
36) LF Ryan Braun (R) – Age: 27
Quick Take: The Hebrew Hammer is having his worst statistical season in the big leagues and still possesses a .370 wOBA and .843 OPS. His power is down across the board but he is still young, has shown massive power in the past and is entering his prime hitting years, consider me still on board the bandwagon for one more season in hopes that the power returns or his value will take a serious hit.
DMB PRO: destroys left handed pitchers
DMB CON: only a LF, lack of patience at plate, hitter’s park, decreasing power output
35) SS Elvis Andrus (R) – Age: 22
Quick Take: What does it say about the current state of the shortstop position when a guy with a sub .700 OPS ranks among the most valuable players in the game? Andrus is still an exciting (young) prospect and the Rangers still have hopes that his bat continues to improve. He already plays one of the better defensive shortstops in baseball and adds a speed element offensively, hopefully he can hit for more power going forward.
DMB PRO: provides valuable PAs and is a great defensive player at very shallow position, speed
DMB CON: very little power and plays in hitter’s park
34) 3B David Wright (R) – Age: 28
Quick Take: While no longer in the discussion for one of the game’s best players Wright still provides good pop (.207 ISO, 499 SLG) from a premium position.
DMB PRO: plays in pitchers park
DMB CON: declining patience/OBP affects overall value
33) CF Colby Rasmus (L) – Age: 24
Quick Take: A slick fielding centre fielder with power gives you a valuable asset going forward. Rasmus has massive power potential (.232 ISO) and should settle in as an average defensive centre fielder when all is said and done, plus at only 24 years of age can still improve. His lack of plate discipline has given him a shockingly high K rate (32.6 K %) and he can’t hit lefties at all, but with time hopefully these improve or his value will definitely take a hit.
DMB PRO: good power, good defense
DMB CON: cannot hit lefties, way too many strikeouts
32) SS Starlin Castro (R) – Age: 20
Quick Take: Anytime a 20 year old more than holds his own with the stick (.338 wOBA), plays a solid position that is dying for talent (SS, -0.5 UZR) and is still growing and maturing physically is definitely a player worth owning. Castro has given Cubbies fans something to cheer for in 2010 with a pretty decent rookie season overall. There are a ton of holes in his offensive game (patience mostly) but he is 20 years old and this is to be expected, the future could be bright for this kid and another speculative buy at an ultra thin position.
DMB PRO: shortstop with upside, solid defender
DMB CON: growing pains of youth
31) RF/CF Jayson Werth (R) – Age: 31
Quick Take: One of the more underrated players in the game, Werth has power (.222 ISO), patience (12.9 BB % and .390 OBP), speed (normally good for 20 SBs) and plays solid defense at all three outfield spots. He strikes out a bit much and he plays in a hitter’s park but at just 31 years old should have some solid years left, he is a free agent at season’s end so keep an eye on where he lands (ballpark factors). Werth also normally has extreme platoon splits and struggles against righties in DMB, has hit righties better in 2010.
DMB PRO: solid defensively (rated at CF), good power/patience
DMB CON: strikes out a lot, has heavy platoon splits (awesome vs. L, average to bad vs. R), good hitter’s park