One of the upsides of downtime during the off-season is the freedom it allows for one to stumble upon tidbits and performances he missed throughout the season. Consider this one: Derrek Lee had a .412 wOBA last season. I’m ashamed to admit I missed out on it. Oh, I saw his name on the WAR leaderboards, skimmed the 35 home runs, and caught a dozen or so Cubs games throughout the season, but for whatever reason my mind’s Shamwow didn’t work on Lee’s .306/.393/.579 slash line.
That doesn’t compare to his magical 2005 season in which he posted a.446 wOBA and .335/.418/.662, but hey, that season was probably one of the best non-Pujols/Bonds/Rodriguez offensive seasons we’ve seen over the last decade. Back to his 2009, the only number that really stands out as a bit of a fluke is his increased HR/FB and even that isn’t too far out of his career norm. Lee’s ISO went through the roof and that twin-killing bug he caught during 2008 (27 GIDP) left his system abruptly. In fact, his 2007 and 2009 season totals add up to 27 GIDP, which tells you how odd last year really was.
Lee turns 35 during next season and sees his contract expire at season’s end. He’s still a capable first baseman and it’ll be interesting to see where he lands if the Cubs don’t work towards an extension. Maybe it’s time for me to make use of the “My Team” function on here.