Thursday, September 29, 2011

Mark Reynolds Fails To Join Club

Mark Reynolds really let me down this year. When he was sent to the Orioles before the 2011 season, I had grandiose dreams of a 400 strikeout performance against the power pitching of the American League East. At 196 K's, he still led the AL in striking out but, for once, that wasn't the source of my obsession. If you follow me on Twitter, you already know where I'm going with this.

Thanks to Reynolds playing third base like a fawn wondering onto the interstate for the first time, he had a pretty good chance to hit 30+ home runs and produce no value. By no value, I mean a 0.0 Wins Above Replacement (WAR). Using Baseball-References version of WAR, only eight (8!) players have ever hit 30+ homers with an rWAR equal to or less than goose egg...

Rk Yrs From To Age
1 Dave Kingman 2 1982 1986 33-37 Ind. Seasons
2 Mike Jacobs 1 2008 2008 27-27 Ind. Seasons
3 Tony Batista 1 2004 2004 30-30 Ind. Seasons
4 Dante Bichette 1 1999 1999 35-35 Ind. Seasons
5 Joe Carter 1 1996 1996 36-36 Ind. Seasons
6 Cecil Fielder 1 1995 1995 31-31 Ind. Seasons
7 Cory Snyder 1 1987 1987 24-24 Ind. Seasons
8 Tony Armas 1 1983 1983 29-29 Ind. Seasons
Provided by View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 9/29/2011.

In 1999, Dante Bichette was secretly replaced in the outfield with a can of Folgers coffee and nobody could tell the difference.

In 620 plate appearances, Reynolds hit 37 home runs and a .221/.323/.483 line. It's a pretty accurate picture of the player he has been over his five year career. But in 2011, his defense was off the charts poor and that gave him a chance to become the ninth player to join the club.

The Orioles, afraid of my Twitter campaign, moved Reynolds to first base. So, much to my chagrin, he finished the season with a 0.5 rWAR. He flirted with the zero mark several times down the stretch but, alas, it was not to be.

We were so close, people. So close.

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