Jump to content


Yo! You're not logged in. Why am I seeing this ad?

Photo

Jacoby Ellsbury's 2012 Mediocrity


This topic has been archived. This means that you cannot reply to this topic.
9 replies to this topic

#1 Hokie Sox

  • 83 posts

Posted 22 August 2012 - 08:37 AM

Jacoby Ellsbury is starting to move out of the small sample size territory (43 games, 172 AB's) and is putting up a line of:


This is more than a quarter of a season. I believe this has been overshadowed by the managerial/organizational stories. I don't want to turn this into a debate about Scott Boras and trading him this off-season. I'm more curious as to what daily observers have recognized. So, what's wrong?


*Edit* Can somebody who knows how to post tables from BREF post his data.

Edited by Hokie Sox, 22 August 2012 - 08:41 AM.


#2 JMDurron

  • 4,319 posts

Posted 22 August 2012 - 08:41 AM

Year Age Tm Lg G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS OPS+ TB GDP HBP SH SF IBB Pos Awards
2007 23 BOS AL 33 127 116 20 41 7 1 3 18 9 0 8 15 .353 .394 .509 .902 131 59 2 1 0 2 0 78/9
2008 24 BOS AL 145 609 554 98 155 22 7 9 47 50 11 41 80 .280 .336 .394 .729 88 218 9 7 4 3 2 *879/D RoY-3
2009 25 BOS AL 153 693 624 94 188 27 10 8 60 70 12 49 74 .301 .355 .415 .770 98 259 13 6 6 6 3 *8
2010 26 BOS AL 18 84 78 10 15 4 0 0 5 7 1 4 9 .192 .241 .244 .485 30 19 0 1 0 0 0 8/7
2011 27 BOS AL 158 732 660 119 212 46 5 32 105 39 15 52 98 .321 .376 .552 .928 144 364 8 9 3 5 1 *8/D AS,MVP-2,GG,SS
2012 28 BOS AL 43 182 172 24 43 14 0 1 11 6 0 13 24 .250 .301 .349 .650 72 60 3 0 0 1 0
6 Yrs 550 2427 2204 365 654 120 23 53 246 181 39 167 300 .297 .350 .444 .795 106 979 35 24 13 17 6
162 Game Avg. 162 715 649 108 193 35 7 16 72 53 11 49 88 .297 .350 .444 .795 106 288 10 7 4 5 2
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 8/22/2012.


#3 JMDurron

  • 4,319 posts

Posted 22 August 2012 - 08:54 AM

I would argue that he is not out of small sample size territory, particularly when that small sample size is effectively the start of his season after a very long layoff, having played all of 7 games in April.

30 PAs in April - 192/300/269 line
74 PAs in July - 304/351/406
78 PAs in August - 219/256/329

I don't see enough information to judge whether he is still recovering from injury, just streaky over small samples, or somehow letting the allegedly miserable clubhouse atmosphere into his head at the plate.

As a point of comparison, here's a 61 PA sample from Ellsbury's awesome 2011 campaign

4/3/11 - 4/22/11 - 164/246/345

That's an admittedly arbitrary sample, designed to find his worst similarly sized streak out of an entire season, but the size is roughly equivalent to what we're looking at in the 2012 slices.

#4 Alternate34

  • 2,461 posts

Posted 22 August 2012 - 08:59 AM

While it still is a small sample size, it is not particularly surprising that his performance is mediocre. His 2011 season was aberrant, even considering it was to be his peak. Players don't usually add 20+ HR when they go from age 26 to age 27. He is still off a reasonable expectation of his production this season, but players have stretched of 200 PA this far off their normal production all of the time.

Fangraphs batted ball profile indicates a combination of:

(1) A return to his typical groundball rate. It was 43% last year. It's back up to 48.3%, which perfectly matches his career rate.

(2) His HR/FB ratio is abysmal at 2.1%. His career rate is 8.9%, but last season was just out of this world compared to his career at 16.7%. I'm not up on the studies of this, but I think this is a combination of reverting back to previous norms and some bad luck. Somehow, he is either making less effective contact or he has lost some strength.

As for his swing mechanics or approach, I haven't noticed anything but I am hardly an expert or even that adept.

#5 Savin Hillbilly


  • SoSH Member


  • 11,588 posts

Posted 22 August 2012 - 09:54 AM

If you go to Ellsbury's Hit Tracker page, you'll see that he had far fewer than the normal percentage of "Just Enough" homers in 2011--just four out of 31 (one of the 32 was inside-the-park). So he wasn't lucky. Either we think he was juicing, or we saw a peak expression of his real abilities.

Now, it's not only possible, but highly likely, that 2011 was Ellsbury's career year. But "career year" is one thing; "fluke" or "outlier" is another. I think it's far more likely that we're seeing the aftereffects of a shoulder problem and a long layoff than that Ellsbury has simply turned back into a pumpkin. I don't think he's a .900 OPS guy going forward, but I think .850-ish is a good rational-optimist expectation through the remainder of his prime (say the next 3-4 years).

#6 mfried

  • 1,001 posts

Posted 22 August 2012 - 10:00 AM

Jacoby Ellsbury is starting to move out of the small sample size territory (43 games, 172 AB's) and is putting up a line of:


This is more than a quarter of a season. I believe this has been overshadowed by the managerial/organizational stories. I don't want to turn this into a debate about Scott Boras and trading him this off-season. I'm more curious as to what daily observers have recognized. So, what's wrong?


*Edit* Can somebody who knows how to post tables from BREF post his data.


Ellsbury's drop off in all areas except fielding signal aossibilitu for packaging him with Beckett for a interesting return in the offseason. Given the upcoming emergence of Bradley, Kalish, etc and some luck in the rotation, I see some interesting possibilities ahead.

#7 maufman


  • SoSH Member


  • 12,374 posts

Posted 22 August 2012 - 10:06 AM

Ellsbury's drop off in all areas except fielding signal aossibilitu for packaging him with Beckett for a interesting return in the offseason. Given the upcoming emergence of Bradley, Kalish, etc and some luck in the rotation, I see some interesting possibilities ahead.


If Ellsbury finishes the season with a 650 OPS, who's going to give up significant value for the right to pay him $8mm next season?

At this point, I don't think you could move Beckett and Ellsbury together without throwing in cash or taking back a bad contract.

Unless he has a monster September, Ellsbury will be a starting CF again next season. That's not a bad thing. If he bounces back in the midst of an otherwise terrible 2013 season for the Sox, he should have some value at next year's trade deadline.

Edited by maufman, 22 August 2012 - 10:06 AM.


#8 Alternate34

  • 2,461 posts

Posted 22 August 2012 - 12:45 PM

If you go to Ellsbury's Hit Tracker page, you'll see that he had far fewer than the normal percentage of "Just Enough" homers in 2011--just four out of 31 (one of the 32 was inside-the-park). So he wasn't lucky. Either we think he was juicing, or we saw a peak expression of his real abilities.

Now, it's not only possible, but highly likely, that 2011 was Ellsbury's career year. But "career year" is one thing; "fluke" or "outlier" is another. I think it's far more likely that we're seeing the aftereffects of a shoulder problem and a long layoff than that Ellsbury has simply turned back into a pumpkin. I don't think he's a .900 OPS guy going forward, but I think .850-ish is a good rational-optimist expectation through the remainder of his prime (say the next 3-4 years).


That is only one type of home run luck.

You can be lucky in choosing which pitches to swing at. A pitcher's pitches vary a lot during a start. While a hitter chooses to swing at a pitch, sometimes that fastball that just happens to have a little less rise or that curve ball with not break as much and the hitter makes better contact. That's still a form of luck. Additional luck includes wind currents, quality of pitcher, quality of pitcher that day, focus from other team's scouting departments, etc.

I don't doubt that Ellsbury has the strength and ability to hit home runs. An 850 OPS certainly isn't crazy. I think he will be worse than that, probably around 825 but I am not wed to that. He has done better so the possibility remains for him to be excellent.

#9 OCD SS


  • SoSH Member


  • 6,849 posts

Posted 22 August 2012 - 12:57 PM

If Ellsbury finishes the season with a 650 OPS, who's going to give up significant value for the right to pay him $8mm next season?


Since he's going through arbitration you're probably looking at $10M with his raise.

Unless he has a monster September, Ellsbury will be a starting CF again next season. That's not a bad thing. If he bounces back in the midst of an otherwise terrible 2013 season for the Sox, he should have some value at next year's trade deadline.


I wouldn't be surprised to see Ellsbury moved to a team that is willing to pay for his upside if they think he'll rebound, or they think they can sign him to an extension. But if the Sox don't find someone who thinks that then it makes sense for them to hold on to him and let JBJ get a bit more seasoning.

If they don't deal him in the off-season I think there is little chance that they move him for any kind of return. If he hits well they are much less likely to deal him and hand his job to a rookie. If he sucks, no one else will want him. If he continues along at his career norms they'll find a taker, but it will probably not bring a great return.

#10 Manramsclan

  • 1,990 posts

Posted 22 August 2012 - 01:00 PM

Ellsbury's drop off in all areas except fielding signal aossibilitu for packaging him with Beckett for a interesting return in the offseason.


I see no scenario where trading Ellsbury this offseason makes any sense for the Boston Red Sox. If they are going to let him go, it will be via trade at the next trade deadline when he has reestablished his value as an above-average to great offensive CF and will garner something of value in return OR they will give him the qualifying offer after the 2013 season in order to receive draft picks. If he accepts, great, but it's more than likely that Boras and he take a contract from the highest bidder.

That extra year also allows for Jackie Bradley to continue to develop for another season, and perhaps enable a trade of Ellsbury in mid-2013.

Ellsbury's numbers this year are difficult to attribute to anything other than injury, and extended downtime. It's tough to get your timing down missing that much time. We've seen it again and again in baseball. Similarly, people pointing out Pedrioa's untimely demise are also misguided. Crash Davis knows what the difference between a .250 and a .300 hitter is. These guys are closer to the players that their career numbers suggest. There is no reason to think that either of them has fallen off a cliff.