The 2011 Good Shapers Nominations

We did it last year and found that there wasn’t much in the way of correlation between getting mentioned as being in “the best shape of your life” and actually outperforming the projections, but maybe this year will be different. Maybe this crop of worked-really-hard-and-had-laser-eye-surgery-and-showed-up-to-camp-focused guys will actually show that all that work really does pay off.

In the form below, please put the player’s name who you have seen referenced as making noticeable improvements this winter, and then in the second box, please include a link to the source material so that we can verify which improvement was noted upon their arrival to camp.

By using the form, I’ll have an easier way of collecting the guys to follow throughout the year. You can also leave the nominated player in the comments if you want to help people not repeat a submission that has already been made.

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Dave is a co-founder of and contributes to the Wall Street Journal.

51 Responses to “The 2011 Good Shapers Nominations”

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  1. Dave Cameron says:

    Kudos to the guy who cited the source “everywhere” for Pablo Sandoval’s nomination. That made me laugh.

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  2. Andy says:

    I asked this via Twitter, but I’m not sure if a Tweet counts as a “source”. Jerry Crasnick tweeted this:

    “RT @jcrasnick Rickie Weeks getting bigger. The guy is built like an NFL strong safety. Good luck on DP takeout slides, guys.”

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    • Dave Cameron says:

      That’s kind of vague. We’ll hope for something better.

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      • Andy says:

        That’s fair, I saw a few other tweets about Jordan Schafer packing on 15-20 lbs, but I’ll try to find something more concrete.

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      • atoms says:

        not sure how much he’s put on this off-season specifically, but here’s a quote from braves’ beat writer dave o’brien:
        “Schafer, whose weight dipped to 169 in the weeks after surgery, is a wiry 202 now.” so there you go. best schafe of his life.

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  3. Yirmiyahu says:

    I loved Jim Leyland’s comment on Miggy Cabrera:

    “I know for a fact, without getting into this situation, I know for a fact Miguel Cabrera is in the best shape of his life. He’s stronger than he’s ever been, and he’s quicker than he’s ever been. … I think Miguel Cabrera is probably going to have the biggest year of his life.”

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  4. Kyle says:

    What about guys going the other way? i.e. Pedro Alvarez supposedly gaining 15 lbs?

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    • Theo says:

      Also, Joba.

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      • phoenix2042 says:

        apparently the yankees are pissed that joba put on weight, but he says it’s all muscle because he built a gym in his house, so he says he can throw harder and has more stamina. it will be interesting to see if it ends up helping him and the yankees have to bite their tongues.

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    • John Smith says:

      Supposedly is the word because he did not gain 15 pounds. People need to hop off his back and find better things to complain about. His weight never hindered him from performing judging by his numbers and seeing him in a couple of games.

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  5. SF 55 for life says:

    pablo sandoval #1

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  6. davidrogoff says:

    I loved the excerpt from this ESPN article about how CC Sabathia lost 25 lbs after he stopped eating full boxes of Cap’n Crunch. What dedication to his craft!

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  7. Gabe says:

    Miguel Olivio reported coming to camp in the “4th best shape of his life.”

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    • Yirmiyahu says:

      I wonder what his top 3 shapes were. Trapezoid, equilateral triangle, oblate spheroid?

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    • Westside guy says:

      They seem to put all their thought into the headlines there, the stories are a letdown. I did like the idea behind a “recommended” story further down that page – ‘Game Halted To Honor A-Rod’s Achievement of “True Yankee”‘.

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  8. Paul says:

    This is the right idea, we should be looking at the “best shape” thing on a scale:

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  9. kampfer says:

    I love how 25 push ups a day is considered trying to get in shape… olivo is one hack of a lazy guy

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  10. GBeck15 says:

    Dayan Viciedo… Already read about 4 articles about him being svelte for this spring.

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  11. Jack Weiland says:

    For what it’s worth, I’m in the best shape of my life.

    Just saying.

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  12. chuckb says:

    Lance Berkman’s in such great shape that he’s going to be able to play 150+ games in RF this season!

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  13. delv says:

    Question: You guys mentioned “laser eye surgery.” Would regular surgery count, too? I’m thinking Brett Gardner had surgery on his wrist and the general thought is that it’ll affect his contact-rates and ISO.

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  14. cs3 says:

    this is a guy who is not just in the best shape of his life, but possibly the best shape any player has ever been in ANY lifetime:

    Roger Bernadina

    looks unreal

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    • gnomez says:

      He has almost as much awesome in his biceps as Brian Wilson had on his feet.

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    • CircleChange11 says:

      [1] Roy Jones Jr?

      [2] Bernadina just has large muscle bellies. It does look impressive though.

      Check out the size of his bi’s versus the rest of his body. His arms belong on a body that is 6’3 235.

      Heh Heh.

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  15. Wade8813 says:

    Has there been any attempt at differentiating between these, and comparing similar ones? Pablo Sandoval losing 22+ lbs is more significant than A-Rod losing 5-6 lbs (

    I’ve only seen a couple articles about this, but they seemed to lump all “Best Shape of Your Life” stories together.

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  16. bc says:

    Russell Martin is in the best shape of his entire career:

    Apparently this is because he trained with an Ultimate Fighting Champion during the off-season. Because no baseball skill is quite as important as good face-punching.

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  17. JoeIQ says:

    Manny ramirez according to a Ken Rosenthal tweet.

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  18. JoeIQ says:

    Rotowire on Aramis Ramirez

    “Impact: Ramirez reportedly worked hard during the offseason and put on 6-8 pounds of muscle. “

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    • CircleChange11 says:

      I just saw on ESPN where he’s lighter than he has ever been outside of his rookie season.

      He has been *gasp* running and learning to sprint in a way that’s easier on the hamstrings.

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      • Westside guy says:

        I hope he’s worked on his pointing skills in case the Rays plop him in the outfield at some point.

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  19. Graham says:

    If Sandoval is really the 240 that’s been publicized, then he has lost a LOT of weight. He was probably at least 20 pounds over his media guide figure, and last year it wasn’t uncommon to see speculation that he was near 300 lbs. Can’t wait to see if he bounces back this year (though solidifying his body mass might make him less bouncy, which would be a cruel twist of irony).

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