There is a pretty interesting (and disheartening) article about Ortiz on Baseball Prospectus today, a team effort by Normandin, Carroll, and Goldstein. While none of them come right out and say that he is done, it is worth noting that none of them predict an improvement either.
1.) Normandin's stat-based analysis is much more helpful than either of Carroll's med view or Goldstein's scout take, mostly because the latter two aren't telling us anything we didn't already know (i.e. we all watch Ortiz and can tell that his swing is a bit off, that's he's just missing pitches, that the contact he makes results in warning-track or pop-up power, and that he's not generating the normal drive or bat speed to which we've grown accustomed).
2.) Though Normandin does conclude based upon first-pitch strikes and other metrics that Ortiz could turn things around, he hedges his bet by saying that the longer this slump goes on the more likely it is that Ortiz has lost the ability to hit for power like he used to. I would have liked to see Normandin take the next step and compare Ortiz to other players who have had similar power outages at his age over similar lengths of time. If I get a minute, I'll try to find some of these examples.
3.) Unrelated to the above post, here's a list of Ortiz's most comparable players by age according to BP's PECOTA Card:
Similarity Index: 31 (NOTE: A score over 50 indicates a players is historically similar to a large group of others, while a score under 20 indicates he is historically unique.)
Rank Hitter Year Score Rank Hitter Year Score
1 Carlos Delgado 2006 46 11 Willie Stargell 1973 24
2 Jim Thome 2004 43 12 Fred McGriff 1997 22
3 John Mayberry 1982 38 13 Ryan Klesko 2005 22
4 Jason Giambi 2004 38 14 Sammy Sosa 2002 21
5 Greg Luzinski 1984 36 15 Cliff Floyd 2006 21
6 Don Mincher 1972 33 16 Norm Cash 1968 21
7 Willie McCovey 1971 27 17 Andre Thornton 1983 19
8 Boog Powell 1975 26 18 Jeff Bagwell 2002 18
9 Ted Williams 1952 25 19 Reggie Smith 1978 18
10 David Justice 1999 24 20 Edgar Martinez 1996 17
Do with this chart what you will, but I think it's interesting to see the names.
edit: i have no idea how to fix that chart. any help?
Edited by jippaman, 11 May 2009 - 02:22 PM.