Wednesday, July 07, 2004

John Olerud's Value

Apparently some people have been griping about John Olerud's performance this year. Since I don't live in Seattle, and a night job keeps me from listening to a lot of M's games, I can only go off the word of folks like David Cameron. Though he usually articulates his argument's well, this is about the most absurd defense of Olerud's value I've ever seen. Maybe David thinks he's meeting Olerud's critics at their level, but arguing that Olerud has been a fierce competitor based on his teams' records? That's silly.

If there's griping about John Olerud's performance this year, it's because he's not living up to expectations.

The hope was that Olerud had an off year last year, and would bounce back. In retrospect, we can see that age seems finally to have caught up with Johnny, and 2003 was the start of his age-induced decline.

The real reason not to single out Olerud is enumerated in the lastest Prospectus Triple Play, which mentions that he's fourth on the team in VORP. (He was fifth, third, and fourth on his team in VORP in 2001,2002, and 2003, respectively). He's also fifth on the team in OPS right now, if we include Dave Hansen (who's first) and Raul Ibanez.

Olerud is a bit of a disappointment this year. We expected more from him, and it would probably be good to get more production out of our first baseman. But he's also still one of the more valuable hitters on the team.

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