Saturday, December 17, 2005

Stop the tape. Rewind it. And listen to how dumb you sound.

In a bold show of allegiance to the dearly departed chubby one himself,Matthew LeCroy, Steve Thompson, host of the Twins pregame show and many other's on 'CCO dropped this gem on us today:

"When it comes down to hitting and that DH spot, there wouldn't be all that much of a difference in the numbers between Mike Piazza and Matthew LeCroy."

Okay, we get it. LeCroy was a good guy, probably still is. But this borderlines on stupidity. But hey, this guy has a job on a major market radio station talking sports, so he must know something we don't right? Granted stats aren't always the thing to look at, but in this case the argument is about numbers, so numbers is what we'll look at.

Here's the career per season (162 games) average numbers for LeCroy:

AVG: .263
H: 129
R: 53
RBI: 79
HR: 22
OBP: .327
SLG: .447
OPS: .774

Now here's Piazza's:

AVG: .311
H: 183
R: 93
RBI: 116
HR: 38
OBP: .382
SLG: .555
OPS: .937

I understand it's unfair to look at Piazza's numbers as a whole, as a large part of those numbers came in the 90's and early '00's. But even the numbers from the last three years don't tilt towards LeCroy at all. But say for arguments sake, you do keep LeCroy for maybe $1 million a year, which would be a slight raise for him. What else can he do? At least Piazza is playable at first and obviously catching isn't a problem. The other major issue is consistency. Sure LeCroy can hit the long ball, but how many of those 17 last year came with men on base? I seem to remember our squad losing a lot of one and two run games last year.

In the end it's a question of who's the proven hitter. If Piazza can become a full time DH and not have the rigors of even splitting the catching duties I think those numbers from the last few years take a pretty decent uptick. Especially playing in a park like the Dome. This is nothing against LeCroy, but if Piazza can be had for a reasonable price, as most FAs this offseason have not, it would be a nice move for the Twins. And an absolute no-brainer when choosing between the two.