What Are We Missing About Nick Markakis?

There’s not a contract agreement yet or even an indication that one is close, but one thing seems clear about this particular baseball offseason: There might not be a larger gap between our perception and the conversations we’re hearing in the real world than in those regarding Nick Markakis. A few weeks ago, it seemed like the Orioles were ready to retain him for the next four years, but that hasn’t quite happened yet, and the latest rumors have the Braves, Blue Jays, Giants, O’s, and potentially others all showing interest.

Earlier this week, ESPN’s Jim Bowden — who’s really very good at this sort of thing — suggested Markakis could get four years and $52 million. MLB Trade Rumors said 4/$48M in October. FanGraphs readers were a little more conservative, coming up with an average of 3.4 years and $39.8M, but we also know that the FanGraphs crowd tends to underestimate free agent contracts somewhat.

Just by those numbers, one would think that Markakis is a desirable player to have, but you probably already know that most of the FanGraphs staff doesn’t really see it that way. A month ago, Dave compared Markakis to Nori Aoki, who clearly isn’t getting a four-year deal. Steamer pegs him for a 103 wRC+ and 1.3 WAR in his age-31 season, and that’s with the benefit of a projected 679 plate appearances. Using Steamer/600 on our Free Agent Tracker, he’s tied for the 15th-best unsigned hitter out there. (The usual “don’t overthink the decimal point” caveat applies.) You’ve probably seen many of us mention how down we are on him via tweets or in chats, as well. He’s not young. He’s not improving. He’s not even a source of righty power, this year’s trendy “must-have.”

And yet, Markakis seems very likely to get a comfortable deal. So before we even know what team is going to give it to him, opening themselves up to inevitable ridicule, perhaps it’s time we shine the spotlight inward first. Where’s the disconnect? What are we missing that makes Markakis so inexplicably appealing?

Is he a better defender than we think?

This is the easiest place to start, because it’s the area that’s got the largest gap. Markakis won a Gold Glove in 2014, his second in the last four seasons. In nine years and 11,758.2 defensive innings, he’s made only 18 errors. A full one-third of that total came in 2009 alone, and in the four years since, he’s fumbled only two balls. He hasn’t made a single error in more than two seasons, not since misplaying a Jeff Francoeur foul fly on Aug. 10, 2012. Clearly, Markakis is sure-handed, and in the three seasons that we have Inside Edge fielding available, he’s made 99.7% of “Routine” plays. 

So if you only knew that, you might find it extremely difficult to parse the fact that our advanced fielding metrics find him to be below-average. Here’s Markakis’ important advanced fielding stats for the last five seasons:

DRS UZR/150 Defense
2010 -11 -4.8 -12.8
2011 2 -5.2 -12.7
2012 -7 -13.2 -13.6
2013 -7 -5.8 -14.1
2014 1 5.8 -2.5

That looks pretty miserable, though of course the “defense” stat is adjusted for position, and right fielders get a -7.5 adjustment, since it’s one of the least important defensive positions. If you wanted to just look at Markakis without comparing him to everyone else, he’d be below-average from 2010-13 (but less so), and above-average in 2014.

The obvious next question is why advanced stats dislike Markakis so much, and that’s an answer that’s relatively easy to answer if you’ve lived through any of the endless Derek Jeter arguments over the years. The chart below shows the three major components of UZR to the left, and the results from the Fan Scouting Report at the right.

Arm RngR ErrR Arm Strength Arm
Accuracy
2010 1.0 -8.2 1.7 92 98
2011 1.8 -9.2 1.8 83 91
2012 -0.4 -8.9 0.7 71 73
2013 2.6 -11.5 2.3 57 70
2014 5.5 -1.6 2.3 76 87

While the FSR is obviously not exactly a scientific method, what we have here shows some pretty obvious reasons why the eye test and the metrics test on Markakis don’t align. Again, we see his ability to avoid miscues appear in ErrR, and we see an accurate (though potentially weakening) arm on both sides of the table. You rarely see Markakis look bad in the outfield, and that accounts for a lot when you’re watching on television. But it’s the RngR column that dooms Markakis much as it did Jeter — it’s great to be sure-handed, but if you’re poor at actually getting to the ball, your value is going to be limited.

That’s long been an issue for Markakis, and the seeming rebound in 2014 is what looks like the outlier more than anything. We can’t know for sure what caused that, because it’s not like he’s had any lower body injuries to recover from, and though he’s aged and slowed somewhat, he’s not David Ortiz out there either. Part of me wonders if the Orioles’ increasing (and increasingly effective) usage of shifts have helped Markakis end up in more favorable spots to field the ball in 2014, but that’s just speculation on my part.

Still, perhaps different teams value what he brings with the glove differently. If you’re looking for someone spectacular who is going to regularly make the extraordinary play to keep runs off the board, Markakis probably isn’t that. If you want someone steady who won’t burn you, he’s your man. That’s about as strong of recommendation as we’re going to be able to offer on defense, however. Range isn’t something that’s likely to improve as he ages.

Do teams care more about contact skills?

This is the other defense of Markakis that regularly comes up, and it’s partially a valid one, maybe moreso if you really buy into the idea that teams are going to copy the Royals’ blueprint of adding plus-contact hitters. (As opposed to the wildly great bullpen or fantastic outfield defense.) As the rest of baseball keeps striking out more, Markakis has been able to keep his whiff rate well below the league average.

Of course, there’s a few issues with that. One is that after three straight years of a K% starting with a “10,” Markakis’ whiff rate increased to 11.9 in 2014. Over the last three years, that number is 11.2%, which is good, but not necessarily elite — it’s tied for 18th-best among qualified hitters. His K/BB numbers have remained relatively steady for the last five years, so there’s not much danger of imminent collapse here, and that should help keep what is usually an above-average OBP afloat.

That said, “contact” and “good contact” aren’t always the same thing, because Markakis’ power has all but disappeared over the years, potentially affected by 2012 surgeries on his right wrist and left thumb as well as to fix a hernia. His batted ball distances have been nothing short of terrifying, really:

Avg. Feet MLB rank
2009 297.91 71
2010 291.23 124
2011 279.86 145
2012 284.07 124
2013 271.22 223
2014 267.92 228

There’s also this: Camden Yards is generally a pretty good place for a lefty hitter to find the stands. Here’s every single Markakis homer over the last three seasons, 37 of them, 23 of which came at home:

markakis_hr_2012-14

If he were to end up in a park that didn’t cater so well to lefties, it’s easy to see that homer total dropping from his usual 10-12 into the single digits. Obviously, this all plays into his total wRC+. An 88 in 2013 was terrible, and a 106 in 2014 was adequate. Combine the two, and he’s tied for 128th in baseball in 2013-14. Among the names ahead of him: Michael Saunders, Chris Johnson and Ike Davis.

It’s true that Markakis has better contact skills than most other players. It hasn’t yet been proven that the market is willing to wildly overpay for that, or that he brings a ton else to the table offensively.

I still don’t think we’ve figured out what makes him appealing. Let’s look at some potentially similar players, but…

How about some comps?

…I don’t think this is going to help the case. I really want to know what it is about Markakis that’s fascinating. I’m not sure this table gets us there. This is a list of eight outfielders, Markakis’ age or younger (save for Aoki), with superior performance over the last two years and similar projections in Steamer/600 for 2015.

2013-14 Steamer/600 2015
Name Age PA AVG OBP SLG wRC+ Def WAR wRC+ WAR
Colby Rasmus 26 834 .253 .315 .477 117 4.1 5.4 110 2.4
Michael Saunders 26 731 .250 .330 .416 109 -4.3 3.2 104 1.9
Drew Stubbs 28 905 .259 .321 .418 99 -6.3 3.2 101 1.8
Nori Aoki 32 1223 .286 .353 .366 103 -3.3 3.9 97 1.8
Alejandro De Aza 30 1203 .258 .319 .397 96 -0.9 3.6 92 1.6
Nick Markakis 30 1410 .274 .335 .371 97 -16.6 2.4 104 1.5
Gregor Blanco 30 955 .263 .337 .361 103 12 4.9 100 1.4
Will Venable 30 963 .248 .301 .411 102 -0.6 3.8 91 1.2
Gerardo Parra 27 1237 .265 .316 .387 91 20.6 4.6 103 1.2

These are players who are either freely available for a fraction of what Markakis is expected to get or would be reasonably inexpensive to acquire via trade. Blanco seemed like less than a lock to even be tendered a contract last night, though he ultimately was. This isn’t exactly a great market for offense — after Chase Headley, it’s Melky Cabrera and cover your eyes — but it’s not like there aren’t other options that couldn’t provide most or all of Markakis’ value for a portion of the price. Why a team would commit multiple expensive years when there’s other options, well, it doesn’t add up.

Let’s say you disagree with Markakis’ defensive ratings, that you prefer to think of him as a 2 WAR player, which isn’t unfair. That’s a league-average player. Markakis seems like a league-average player. If wins are somewhere around $7 million this winter, you can make the argument that he’s worth $14 million next year. Let’s even call it $15 million, if you really like not striking out. But even if we go with that, he’s already shown that the last two years are the start of his decline.  A four-year deal easily takes you to below-average or replacement or worse. It’s hard to see a team coming out ahead on that.

When I started this, I really wanted to see what I’d been missing. I wanted to know why the public perception and the advanced metrics seem so far apart. I’m not really sure I accomplished that. Markakis is a steady player, nothing more, with little upside remaining and age squarely against him, one who could look worse outside of Camden depending on where he winds up. Some team is going to pay heavily for that. Some team is going to regret doing so.



Print This Post



Mike Petriello lives in New York and writes about the Dodgers daily at Dodgers Digest, as well as contributing to ESPN Insider. He wrote two chapters in the 2014 Hardball Times Annual as well as building The Hardball Times and TechGraphs, and was an editorial producer at Sports on Earth. Find him at @mike_petriello.


Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
tz
Guest
tz
1 year 5 months ago

It’s probably a perfect storm of:

– Memories of his great seasons in his mid-20’s, making teams optimistic that he can bounce back.

– Confirmation bias that if he’s been worth $15M to the O’s the past few years, you have to offer him something in that general range.

– Maybe the worst batch of free-agent OFs ever.

– The perceived value of Markakis’s consistency, especially when compared to the perception folks have of Cabrera and Rasmus.

I wouldn’t be surprised if Bowden’s 4/52 prediction comes true (unless it’s the Padres that sign him)

Reggie Roby
Guest
Reggie Roby
1 year 5 months ago

“Maybe the worst batch of free-agent OFs ever.”

Teams are still forgetting the PUNT option…

Ray Guy
Guest
Ray Guy
1 year 5 months ago

Reminds me of when a couple teams could only see 2 options, BJ Upton or Bourn. What a difference a punt would have made there.

Tim Legler
Guest
Tim Legler
1 year 5 months ago

Exactly. The notion that you can’t scrape by with in-house options for one year and then reconsider the next offseason can make for some expensive and far-reaching mistakes. The Jays resisted the urge to “do SOMETHING!” at 2B last offseason (and may again this year, too).

tz
Guest
tz
1 year 5 months ago

Note to John Hart: you could always have punted (see above)

teufelshuffle
Guest
teufelshuffle
1 year 5 months ago

Sandy Alderson’s best Free Agent move so far was punting that year.

Vil
Member
Vil
1 year 5 months ago

I hope the Orioles don’t forget the punt option.

I loved Nick in his early years, and even up through 2010, when the HRs had diminished, he was still a doubles machine.

I get to see Nick a lot. He didn’t have great range before, but it seems to me that his range went down dramatically in 2011, the year he had the abdominal tear—which he played through in typical Markakis fashion–and maybe that’s a contributing factor.

Nick played a full week in 2012 with a fracture in his left wrist before finally going on the DL. Maybe what we have is a guy who should rest up a little more instead of demonstrating how tough he is.

Or was. His best years are clearly behind him. I prefer Colby “I’ll swing at the first or second pitch I swear to god” Rasmus to Nick?

Yes, (gulp!) I do. We’d get a good glove and a guy who can hit for better power, but a lower batting average. And he should be pretty cheap.

If you’re paying for Nick, you’re paying for consistency and durability and not much else.

Robert Hombre
Guest
Robert Hombre
1 year 5 months ago

A parallel and opposite article might be written on Chase Headley.

Bowden’s estimate was, at one point, $27M over 3 years. Regress defense all you like, the *very* worst estimate you might have for Headley is that he’s a league average third-baseman – this is making every uncharitable assumption, assumptions that are probably off-base. And unless every team is unanimous that this worst-case scenario is gospel truth, 3/27 is baffling. Even then, 3/27 is *still* probably way low.

So even then, what the dickens are we missing?

grant
Guest
grant
1 year 5 months ago

Headley will do better than 3/27, but if he looks light it’s probably concern about health. That’s something that the public has a hard time evaluating, but it must play a huge role in teams’ evaluations.

LHPSU
Guest
LHPSU
1 year 5 months ago

3/27 is impossible. 3/40 is more in the ballpark.

Cool Lester Smooth
Guest
1 year 5 months ago

That was before someone who’s been significantly worse over the past three years got 6/$95, though.

Cool Lester Smooth
Guest
1 year 5 months ago

*5/$95m

Franz
Guest
Franz
1 year 5 months ago

Well, someone clearly values Headley. He’s apparently got a 4yr/$65M guaranteed offer in hand.

Not bad for a guy over 30 and a pesky herniated disc.

Outliar Baseball
Guest
Outliar Baseball
1 year 5 months ago

When I think of Markakis’ elite qualities, GP always comes to mind. He’s reached 160 games 4 times sonce 2009. But then Steamer knows this and he seems less likely to do this as a 35 yo.

CrazyPants
Guest
1 year 5 months ago

Durability is definitely part of the answer.

In addition, people keep knocking Markakis bc he “no longer has the power he once had” but that doesn’t mean there isn’t plenty of value in being a table setter. Markakis batted ball profile fits really week as a leadoff or 2 hitter.

Add to that, LHed throwing RFers with rifle arms just aren’t a dime a dozen as some seem to think. He actually leads all active OFers in assists since he entered the league (2nd if you count Francoeur I think).

He also handles LHed pitching well enough that he doesn’t need a platoon mate.

All that, and I think that people are giving too much weight to his one clunker season in 2013. If you underweight that, his stick seems a lot more reliable and he just doesn’t seem like the kind of guy whose going to fall off a cliff before 35.

This all leads me to think a 4/40M is out there for him. As is usually the case, one team out there will probably cave and give him that 4th year he’s probably looking for. And let’s face it, there are a few teams where he fits – Braves (just opened RF), Tigers, Royals…

CrazyPants
Guest
1 year 5 months ago

fits really *well*

arghh.

CrazyPants
Guest
1 year 5 months ago

on top of which, I would argue with the notion that 11% K rate is not an elite skill. Sure it is. His 11.8% was 6th best for all OFers with 300 or more PAs in 2014 and among those, his 8% BB rate was best. Let’s face it, his walk and contact rates taken together appear to be pretty special and make him a very solid leadoff or 2 hitter depending on whether the team he goes to has a better leadoff option.

Albert Poodles
Guest
Albert Poodles
1 year 5 months ago

He would have been signed in a heartbeat if Hendry was still running the Cubs.

Catoblepas
Guest
Catoblepas
1 year 5 months ago

I don’t know that there really is value in being stable, or at least value that isn’t picked up by WAR. Again, avoiding a dumpster fire in right field is definitely useful and worth something, but if you have a replacement level in-house option (not guaranteed, but likely), I’d rather take the inconsistent player projected for 3WAR/600 than the consistent projected for 1/600. Sure, maybe the first guy has injury problems or something, but there’s no added value to the consistency of the second guy beyond prorating plate appearances accordingly.

Hurtlockertwo
Guest
Hurtlockertwo
1 year 5 months ago

It’s interesting that the Braves are supposedly trying sign him. The comparison on defense may be really glaring then.

Coach Buttermaker
Guest
Coach Buttermaker
1 year 5 months ago

I can’t see the Braves being serious about Markakis unless they get a bargain. He doesn’t fit much of what they are currently trying to do. My hunch is that it is all an attempt to fool the fan base that they aren’t in re-build mode and that the fans should still come out to support the team.

Anon21
Guest
Anon21
1 year 5 months ago

Could be, but very few fans are even going to hear about these rumors, much less remember them in April after the Braves (hopefully) fail to sign him.

Goat Fondler
Guest
Goat Fondler
1 year 5 months ago

Especially Braves fans.

CrazyPants
Guest
1 year 5 months ago

why do you think it doesn’t fit with what they’re trying to do?

I would think going away from being a league-leading whiffing machine is something they’re trying to do but I’m admittedly not that close to the team.

Dave Cornutt
Guest
Dave Cornutt
1 year 5 months ago

Pants, the Braves are, whether they want to admit it or not, in at least a mini-rebuilding mode. Justin Upton is going to be traded; they are going to have big holes at 2B, 3B, and C, and they are planning to play Evan Gattis in LF which does promise to be a dumpster fire. They were thinking to get MLB-ready young outfielders back in some of the trades, but no one is offering any such. So they’re going to have to take prospects who are at least a year away. And anyhow, the Braves are focused in 2017 when the new ballpark opens.

Goat Fondler
Guest
Goat Fondler
1 year 5 months ago

It looks like they’re trying to go younger and cheaper. Heyward isn’t old, but Miller is younger and has more team control years left – Heyward is a free agent after this season. Upton isn’t old either, but he’s right at his peak and will be paid $14.5M next season and then hits free agency. Gattis is still cheap but he’s already 28.

Dave Cornutt
Guest
Dave Cornutt
1 year 5 months ago

Yeah, the Braves are clearly looking for at least one outfielder who won’t be terrible, especially if they trade Justin Upton and wind up with Evan Gattis and Joey Terdoslovich in the outfield. However, in the list of teams persuing Markakis, the Braves stick out like a sore thumb: they are facing at least a mini-rebuild and probably won’t be competitive in 2015. So Markakis doesn’t appear to make much sense for them.

Ironically, I think one factor that is running Markakis’ price up is the perception that he is signable, as opposed to most of the other outfielders who have been available this winter. He’s got multiple teams bidding, which is usually a good situation for the player.

Dan
Guest
Dan
1 year 5 months ago

Aren’t teams valuing health as a skill more than ever? Besides one year (2012) of a broken thumb, he’s been very consistent in playing 150+ games.

Goat Fondler
Guest
Goat Fondler
1 year 5 months ago

What makes you think that?

Jeter's Glove
Guest
Jeter's Glove
1 year 5 months ago

Well I’m rootin’ for him!

Kyle
Guest
Kyle
1 year 5 months ago

He doesn’t cost a draft pick.

He’s “reliable” if such a thing exists anymore.

He maintains healthy walk/strikeout rates.

He’s a lefty bat that isn’t bad (or in the case of Colby Rasmus, completely unplayable) against left handed pitching.

He pulls his homers to right but he sprays line drives and groundballs to left and center, and thus is basically unshiftable on the infield.

Nick Markakis doesn’t do anything super super well, but there are a ton of things he’s not BAD at, which in this baseball market is definitely worth something.

amgarvey
Guest
amgarvey
1 year 5 months ago

You are at least attempting to list areas where there could be a discrepancy between FGs and clubs valuation of Markakis. The article purportedly sets out to do that then predictably falls into the How do I loathe you? let me count the ways… pattern.

The premise of the article was far more interesting than the execution.

Los
Guest
Los
1 year 5 months ago

This type of analysis bugs the shit out of me…FIGURATIVELY. Who cares if he is unshiftable. Who would you rather have in your lineup.

Player A: .400 wOBA (totally shiftable)
Player B: .399 wOBA (super-duper unshiftable)

Answer: The shiftability doesn’t matter. Just look at the fucking batting line. (adjusted of course). Now of course the difference here is miniscule but still, give me the .400 wOBA.

Albert Poodles
Guest
Albert Poodles
1 year 5 months ago

Which FA OFer is going to fuckin’ give you .400 wOBA?

Los
Guest
Los
1 year 5 months ago

Change it to .300 and .299. These weren’t actual players. The point wsa that someone being unshiftable is non-analysis since his non shiftability is already accounted in his wOBA just as someone being terrible against a shift is included in wOBA as well.

Kyle
Guest
Kyle
1 year 5 months ago

My point is that whatever production he has is more likely to be sustainable as opposed to a guy like Colby Rasmus who pulls everything he can reach and is never likely to repeat his strong offensive seasons of the past because teams have figured him out.

Los
Guest
Los
1 year 5 months ago

I could just as easily say Markakis has been figured out because he’s lost 20 feet in 2 years of flyballs so teams will play him shallower and he will suck more. Do you have data backing up that Rasmus will be worse off than expected because of his susceptibility to shifts? Steamer has him at 101 wRC+ next year and Markakis at 103 wRC+. Do you think Markakis is under projected because of shifts or Rasmus is over-projected? If the answer is no, the shiftiness doesn’t matter. If the answer is yes, we may just have a research project on our hands.

Kyle
Guest
Kyle
1 year 5 months ago

“Watching the game” is rarely given merit, but I watched probably 130-140 Blue Jays games each of the last two seasons, and is sure as heck looked like teams played Rasmus differently.

I specifically remember Colby Lewis giving him shit in the media after a game because Rasmus bunted to third against the shit in a two run game, which for whatever reason Lewis didn’t like.

Mike’s table in the post shows Rasmus at the top, while compiling his 13-14 offensive numbers. 13 Rasmus and 14 Rasmus are very different beasts, and unless he completely changes his approach I strong feel 13 Rasmus is a thing of the past and has no bearing on future performance.

Markakis doesn’t have any obvious glaring flaws to his approach, so other than the gradual decline because of aging I don’t see some kind of statistical cliff he’s about to fall off of. Hence why I feel being unshiftable has value.

matt w
Guest
matt w
1 year 5 months ago

Well, if Colby Rasmus can bunt to third for a hit against the shift, then the shift isn’t going to take away his offensive value.

santorumforpresident
Guest
santorumforpresident
1 year 5 months ago

There are reports now that the Orioles are backing off of their original four year offer and are only comfortable with three years. As your comp chart demonstrates, De Aza is essentially the same player and he’s already on the roster for half the cost of what Markakis will be in 2015. It really makes no sense for the Orioles to sign him at this point, it’s just a matter of getting the fans and Showalter to get over the love they have for him and realize he’s incredibly replaceable.

CrazyPants
Guest
1 year 5 months ago

I’ve always gotten the sense that the O’s were planning for Lough to be the Markakis successor.

Orsulakfan
Guest
Orsulakfan
1 year 5 months ago

I think it has had mostly to do with questioning the defensive metrics, and then 2 things not really mentioned in the article: 1) he is considered an excellent clubhouse presence; and 2) he has remained remarkably durable over the years (except for some bad luck in 2012). These are not everyday skills, and I wouldn’t be upset at a slight overpay for them if the Orioles do re-sign him. Also, I think his contact tendencies might be more valuable in Baltimore’s offensive mix given our plethora of free-swingers.

Still, what might be happening is that Markakis’s judgment of his own value, probably shaped by his large contract, is what is holding up the proceedings, and that other teams are valuing him significantly lower than what is being reported and predicted, and are making contract offers somewhat in line with that. We won’t know until he actually signs. It is a blow in pride to accept a huge pay cut, especially when you are an everyday player.

wiggly
Guest
wiggly
1 year 5 months ago

An excellent clubhouse presence? My impression of him is that he’s basically Silent Bob.

RJ3
Guest
RJ3
1 year 5 months ago

Your impression is wrong. He was very vocal inside the clubhouse and was a leader for years.

JJ Hardy Says...
Guest
JJ Hardy Says...
1 year 5 months ago

“He was a leader in the clubhouse even though he didn’t talk much,” Hardy said in a phone interview.

Vil
Member
Vil
1 year 5 months ago

Well, we Orioles fans prefer the strong silent type. Buck does too.

chuckb
Guest
chuckb
1 year 5 months ago

What I most appreciate about this article is that you began by asking a question, challenging your (and others’) preconceived notions about Markakis. Really good stuff. That the authors here are most interested in asking questions is why I keep coming back to this site.

Shankbone
Guest
1 year 5 months ago

Markakis has some of the best lefty split #s of any full time player – not a lot of dropoff. 291/364/452 against righties, 288/344/398 against lefties. He also has the most PAs of the player comp listed in the article for the last 2 years. So yeah, he does look steady. The BA has slid the past two years, but he’s reached 700 PAs most years.
2006 22 542
2007 23 710
2008 24 697
2009 25 711
2010 26 709
2011 27 716
2012 28 471
2013 29 700
2014 30 710

Being able to put up the stats he does, going full time against all pitchers, that’s an underrated skill. Hunter Pence has something similar going on.

kevinthecomic
Guest
kevinthecomic
1 year 5 months ago

A low 700s OPS for a corner outfielder is pretty terrible, regardless of which side of the plate he hits from.

Jason B
Guest
Jason B
1 year 5 months ago

I think those are plate appearances by season (I had to read it a few times to figure it out, the message boards don’t allow for a ton of formatting).

Shankbone
Guest
1 year 5 months ago

Those are PAs. But in this new offensive environment, a corner OF with 700 ops is the new deal.

AL Avg RF: 261/321/405 (726)
AL Avg LF: 258/323/399 (722)
NL Avg RF: 260/327/417 (744)
NL Avg LF: 257/321/405 (726)

Kris
Guest
Kris
1 year 5 months ago

A Venable/Stubbs platoon seems like a good idea

KJ
Guest
KJ
1 year 5 months ago

Really hope Markakis wants to go to a contender so that the Braves can be saved from themselves.

Dave Cornutt
Guest
Dave Cornutt
1 year 5 months ago

Riffing on the comment about shifts making Markakis’ defensive numbers improve, I note that his balls-in-zone and total plays were both down last year, more than would be explained by the slightly smaller number of innings played. I wonder if the shifts meant that he was required to chase fewer balls out at the edges of his range, which made his range numbers come out better.

attgig
Guest
attgig
1 year 5 months ago

Range is the huge detractor from his defense, and while it was easier to see with Jeter playing up the middle in the infield, I have a harder time seeing Markakis’ range factor stat aligning with the eye test as a right fielder.

How is range calculated for a RF’er and is there evidence that he’s not getting toballs that others would get to?
are there gifs/videos?
distance traveled to balls?
is it that he just doesn’t read balls well and gets late jumps?

hookstrapped
Guest
1 year 5 months ago

I have the same question and wonder if any RF playing in Camden Yards is penalized on range because there are fewer opportunities to display good range due to the size of the outfield.

AK7007
Member
AK7007
1 year 5 months ago

There are park adjustments that go into range. Those could be wrong, we don’t know. What one could do today, is look at tape and see what his range is compared to other outfielders. When statcast or whatever MLBAM calls their new tracking comes out, then we will *know* what each player’s range is, because we can just look at their reaction time, speed, and route efficiency. We will also know about positioning when statcast comes out so we can separate that from range, and probably positioning will become less of a player skill and more of a bench coach skill, creating a gameplan for each pitcher/hitter matchup and base/out situation.

But, if you just want to see what we have today, we have inside edge fielding spray charts. Compare Markakis from 2012-14 (below average range): http://www.fangraphs.com/spraycharts.aspx?playerid=5930&position=OF&type=fielding&pid2=5930&ss1=2012&se1=2014&ss2=2012&se2=2014&cht1=fielding_made&cht2=fielding_not&pos1=ALL&pos2=ALL
to Stanton from the same time period (average range): http://www.fangraphs.com/spraycharts.aspx?playerid=4949&position=OF&type=fielding&pid2=4949&ss1=2012&se1=2014&ss2=2012&se2=2014&cht1=fielding_made&cht2=fielding_not&pos1=ALL&pos2=ALL
to Heyward (best range): http://www.fangraphs.com/spraycharts.aspx?playerid=4940&position=OF&type=fielding&pid2=4940&ss1=2012&se1=2014&ss2=2012&se2=2014&cht1=fielding_made&cht2=fielding_not&pos1=ALL&pos2=RF

You have to zoom in to see the differences, but the idea is that he just doesn’t get to as many balls. Camden isn’t to blame for lateral range issues. His improvement in 2014 is based on getting to something like ten more balls than he did in 2012-13. Since outfielders turn such a large % of balls that they get to into outs in comparison to infielders, just getting there is a big deal.

Vil
Member
Vil
1 year 5 months ago

Well, I’ve seen him play in spacious parks a lot as an avid Orioles fan.
And yeah, the range isn’t there.
If he played in Kaufmann Stadium–the Royals are really interested in him?–he’d really be exposed.

Matt P
Guest
Matt P
1 year 5 months ago

For right fielders, there’s a positive correlation between error ratings and innings on defense. There’s a positive correlation between arm ratings and innings played on defense. There’s no correlation between range and innings played on defense.

Instead of being seen as a -10 defensive fielder he’s probably seen at +5. And that explains why someone is going to overpay.

The Stranger
Guest
The Stranger
1 year 5 months ago

The disconnect is almost certainly the value of his defense. Clearly, people in the game think he’s a good defender, or he wouldn’t have those Gold Gloves. So some team is going to figure that a slightly above-average bat combined with plus defense adds up to an above-average player at present. Figure in a little bit of decline over the next few years, and it’s easy to see how teams could offer a four-year deal that pays Markakis to be roughly league-average during that time.

It’s clear that at least some teams still view avoiding errors as the definition of good defense. I’m not saying those teams are right, but it’s no mystery what they see that the FanGraphs world doesn’t.

Jim
Guest
Jim
1 year 5 months ago

If the O’s give him three or four years it makes no sense? Why didn’t they just pick up his 17.5M 2015 team option? Yeah, it’s a high number but since they had to pay the 2M buyout picking it up would have amounted to signing him to a one year 15.5M deal which sounds way better than any three or four year deal they may give him. Then if he has a bad 2015 you let him walk and if he has a 2 + WAR year and you really want to keep him put the QO on him next year. Picking up that option just seemed like such a smarter move than giving the declining Markskis a long term deal. I just don’t get it.

Dave Cornutt
Guest
Dave Cornutt
1 year 5 months ago

I guess they figured they could save some money next year by signing him to a new contract. But I’ve observed before that a declining player who is an FA is often reluctant to take a lower offer from their current team until they have thoroughly explored the market, even though it might be more money than anyone else offers.

AK7007
Member
AK7007
1 year 5 months ago

I don’t get it unless they totally misread the market before the offseason, and now are having a panic moment realizing that they are going to have to pay way more.

Gelatinous Cube
Guest
Gelatinous Cube
1 year 5 months ago

I think Jim & Dave’s analyses are astute and it doesn’t look like a panic moment on the O’s part so much as standing their ground, knowing they’ve got De Aza to fall back on.

One thing they could have done is buy him out and then make a QO, which would have saved a tiny bit of money if he’d accepted, and would have served as a poison pill to anyone who tried to pick him up due to the draft pick. But that would have been a bit of a jerk thing to do to Nick.

So perhaps with a bit of hopeful bias as an Orioles fan I suggest this is a case of a player being right on the bubble relative to the market and both sides taking a coldly calculating approach to business. I just hope that if he does return to the O’s, the experience doesn’t sour him. I like seeing him and Jones together; they make a good buddy cop team.

Adam S
Guest
Adam S
1 year 5 months ago

I think you’re over thinking it. Markakis was a top prospect and he had a couple of pretty good years early on. He has a couple of gold gloves which “overrules” defensive metrics. He’s an every day player, not a LH you need to platoon.

That builds a reputation of being a good player. Heck, until I looked I hadn’t realized that Markakis was so mediocre. People perceive he’s good because they don’t look at his actual performance.

A ML GM
Guest
A ML GM
1 year 5 months ago

I have all kinds of advanced analytics departments, and success in my career depends upon making the right calls when spending large chunks of money in an attempt to win baseball games. But I’ll be damned if those Gold Gloves don’t sway me against my better judgment!

Josh
Guest
Josh
1 year 5 months ago

Could there be some defensive value going uncaptured in his games played at Camden Yards? There was pretty robust discussion about Carl Crawford losing defensive value moving into Fenway with it’s smaller left field, at 310 in the corner. Camden RF is 318 to the corner and has a similar wall. The Green Monster is 37 feet high while the wall in Camden (Orange Monster?) is 25 feet high. Obviously it’s a bit less extreme, but I would imagine it takes some balls away from him that would otherwise be caught, and perhaps that hurts him.

Doubt that fully reconciles his perceived value, however — as the article states, even if you gave him a boost defensively it doesn’t quite make sense. Guessing it’s some mixture (at least it was for me in the crowdsource) of remembering him as the ONLY player of value on the Orioles a few years ago, plus his good arm and left-handedness-in-right, and perceived clubhouse “fit.” At this point, would be fairly surprised if he gets a 4 year deal, but something like 3-42 wouldn’t shock me, maybe with a vesting option.

The Stranger
Guest
The Stranger
1 year 5 months ago

I think the effect of a small outfield would be to lessen the effect of range on defensive value at either extreme. With less ground to cover, the ability to cover ground matters less – that’s what happened with Crawford. But if anything, Markakis’ range will look worse in a bigger outfield – more ground to cover means more balls he won’t get to.

Josh
Guest
Josh
1 year 5 months ago

But not necessarily. If balls are hit with some loft over his head, in, say, AT&T Park, he has the opportunity to get to them while in Camden Yards, he might not, as it’s beyond the wall.

I guess my point is that he may be being penalized for not catching balls at Camden that should be caught, but simply aren’t because they leave the yard or scrape the wall.

vince
Guest
vince
1 year 5 months ago

He is a solid player in an era where dependable is hard to come by. Other players will beat him in counting and rate stats, but he doesn’t kill his team for extended stretches or give away at bats. This is also known as winning baseball which is becoming a rarer commodity every year. See the two teams in the World Series for solid players.

Jason B
Guest
Jason B
1 year 5 months ago

In a hypothetical scenario, I’ll always take the .350 wOBA with peaks and valleys over the .330 wOBA super consistent dude.

Or, if I’m looking at my paycheck, I’ll take $0, $2000, $0, $4000, $0 over a 5-week period rather than $1000 a week over that same 5-week stretch.

I guess what I’m saying is, I’ll take the overall superior numbers regardless of how “consistent” that output appears.

Josh
Guest
Josh
1 year 5 months ago

Disagree and I think we need to be careful not to dismiss vince’s claims just because they read like some of the old-timey baseball logic that FanGraphs has historically challenged.

Could consistency be a valuable skill? I would imagine so. I’m not sure that Markakis actually qualifies — I’m sure there’s a way to quantify it and determine that one way or another — but it’s an interesting thought.

I originally thought the paycheck analogy was inappropriate, but it might be illuminating in the discussion of building a team. You can’t sacrifice production for consistency up and down the roster, but you do need some consistent players. If my employer offered me $0, $2000, $0, $4000, $0 over a 5-week period rather than $1000 a week for 5 weeks, I would take it too. Unless my bills were due after week 3 and I don’t have sufficient funds. Maybe a scenario would be more palatable if I had a roommate with steady income that would allow me to wait it out and make the more money. If you’ll indulge me, Markakis is that roommate. You plug him into RF and it allows you to carry less-consistent players at other positions.

None of this whatsoever actually relates back to the larger point, which is why is he being valued more than we realize — but it’s potential fodder for another “What are teams looking at that we aren’t?” article that talks about teams being five or so years ahead of the community.

T.A. Gaywater
Guest
T.A. Gaywater
1 year 5 months ago

I would think that higher stats over fewer games would contribute fewer wins. I would rather have a player spread three homeruns over ten games than hit them in one night, assuming that at least one of them would be overkill.

AK7007
Member
AK7007
1 year 5 months ago

Vince, I think you were looking for “The will to win”™ – not “winning baseball”

Joffrey
Guest
Joffrey
1 year 5 months ago

How original

Jon
Guest
Jon
1 year 5 months ago

One of the disconnects may be his 2013 season, and to some extent ’12. The various projection systems will judge ’13 as a 0.0 win season, and then use that in their weighted averages used to calculate his baseline projection for 2015. That’s why he’s been a 2+ win/150 game player for long time, but is projected at 1.5 wins for ’15 by Steamer. Plus his ’12 was negatively impacted by fluky broken bones from HBPs. Maybe the market sees Markakis’ 2012-2013 as injury-influenced outliers and pegs his near-term production in the 2-3 win range he’s been otherwise.

the fume
Guest
the fume
1 year 5 months ago

His Inside Edge defensive data paints a far different picture from UZR. To the point that only Heyward is clearly better in RF, and that’s not by much.

I suspect he’s viewed as a positive defensively by many teams, which makes him a 2-3 WAR player for 2015.

Darren
Guest
Darren
1 year 5 months ago

Inside Edge likes Markakis fielding much better. Over 2012-2014 he seemed to be the best RF behind Heyward on balls that were less than 90% catchable, and the best on balls greater than 90% catchable.

bvillebaron
Guest
bvillebaron
1 year 5 months ago

All of this sabermetrics stuff has some value I guess, but sorry guys there is no way I take Gregor Blanco over Markakis.

AK7007
Member
AK7007
1 year 5 months ago

Explain…

Vil
Member
Vil
1 year 5 months ago

I’d take Blanco over Nick in a heartbeat. Look at his UZR this past year both as a RF and a CF. He measures up very well against his peers at both positions.

He can’t hit, but he can definitely run faster than Nick, so he’d be a better baserunner too.

Team defense was one of the major factors in the Orioles success this year. We don’t necessarily need a big stick in RF.

The O’s can put Pearce in LF when Chris Davis starts against RHPs and De Aza there when Pearce is playing 1B.

Wieters did a tremendous job early in 2014 in beating the shift against him as a LHB for the first time in at least two years. His splits improved dramatically. If Machado can put together a relatively injury free season, we’ll have production from two positions we didn’t have for much of last year.

So why worry about the RF situation? Stick a good defender in RF like Blanco—he’ll be a lot cheaper than Nick—and wait for better alternatives to show up in the coming years.

CrazyPants
Guest
1 year 5 months ago

Related question might be, why the heck did the Jays just non-tender Dirks, whom they recently picked up? If healthy, could he get close to replicating a Markakis season?

CM
Guest
CM
1 year 5 months ago

The defense thing puzzles me greatly. With a guy who plays SS it is easy to be fooled regarding range. Balls are hit harder. Guys like Jeter can be terrible to one side and not so bad to the other.

In RF, I would think it would be a lot more difficult to be fooled. When a ball is hit in the air, you look out there and there is a fair amount of time to figure out if it is catchable or not. I would think it would be obvious if Markakis’s range were horrible. I watch almost every Oriole game. While it is clear that Markakis doesn’t have unbelievable range, he sure seems to get to what you would expect him to get to and some that you wouldn’t. He also has a good arm and plays balls well off the wall at Camden.

There was some mention of injuries. He had a substantial abdominal injury in 2011 and had surgery for it in 2012. When he came back from the DL in 2012 (from another injury), he was killing the ball up until he was hit in the wrist by Sabathia. Wrist injuries are horrible for hitters, so you have to write-off 2013 to a large extent. You also have to write-off a couple of those years related to the glove, a screwed up wrist, abdominal injury, and cervical herniated discs are going to slow you down.

Everyone associated with the Orioles said that 2014 was Nick’s first truly healthy year in awhile. And it showed, he was much better with the bat and he also looked better with the glove.

I agree he is still likely overrated, but how many RF out there are you sure are going to be better over the next 4 years? Not many.

I seriously doubt that anyone would opt for any of the guys in the comp list over Markakis for the next 4 years.

AK7007
Member
AK7007
1 year 5 months ago

“I seriously doubt that anyone would opt for any of the guys in the comp list over Markakis for the next 4 years.”

That’s right, you wouldn’t – they don’t deserve 4 years, and neither does Markakis! Those other players don’t require a 4 yr commitment at $15 mil a year, that’s why you would rather have them. In fact, you could probably get two of them for less than Markakis, and for fewer years. What would a Blanco/Stubbs platoon look like for $10 million a year without long-term commitment? It would look like good value, that’s what. Markakis looks like bad value.

PBMax
Guest
PBMax
1 year 5 months ago

well said.

Tim
Guest
Tim
1 year 5 months ago

I would submit that the reason Markakis gets to the balls you expect him to get to is that you’ve been watching him play RF for 9 years.

And I would take Rasmus or Saunders over the next four years over Markakis. I will always remember him fondly, but he does not deserve a guaranteed starting job, let alone a 4-year commitment for real money.

BenRevereDoesSteroids
Guest
BenRevereDoesSteroids
1 year 5 months ago

I think that part of the appeal of Markakis may not be the upside, but the perceived lack of downside. He has been a remarkably steady 2 win-ish player for years now. Yes, a guy like Rasmus may have much, MUCH more upside, but he also has had a very up and down career and a K rate that has been trending in the wrong direction in an alarming way.

If (IF) that is the case, I can’t say that I really blame GMs. If I was in their shoes, I would probably bid more on a guy that I figured would sit in the 1.5-2.5 win range than the 1-3 win range.

Jim
Guest
Jim
1 year 5 months ago

For a corner outfield slot I will throw out the idea I’ve heard offered by a few others before. I’ll throw out the idea of approaching the Dodgers about doing a salary swap of Ubaldo Jiminez for one of their three OFs they are looking to dump. Here’s their remaining salary breakdowns:

Jiminez: 38.75M over next three years
Kemp: 107M over next five years
Crawford: 62.25 over next three years
Ethier: 56M over next three years (includes 18 buyout)

I don’t think O’s feel like they can fix Ubaldo and view him as sunk cost, however, some teams may feel like they can. Maybe Honeycutt can turn him around. Dodgers are looking for fifth starter.

They could start w Kemp who is owed 68.25M over Ubaldo on life on contract. I think he would play well at Cambden Yards as DH/LF filling Cruz’s void. I think this would be Dodgers least preferred move because they feel Kemp has more trade value. Next I would try Crawford. I think he’s actually the best fit. I would actually prefer him over Markskis on even contracts. Steamer has him projected for 2 WAR which I think is fair. I actually think he could be worth 5-6 WAR over remaining three years. He is owed 3/23.5M above Ubaldo over life of contract or about 7-8M a year or the equivalent of 1/WAR a year. Since I feel Ubaldo is replacent value on O’scwithout change of scenery I would be comfortable just swapping contracts straight up. I think the Dodgers would roll the dice on Ubaldo to dump the entirety of Crawford’s contract. The last option would be Ethier. Don’t laugh but I would consider it if I could dump Ubaldo and get the Dodgers to eat up the difference which would be 17.25M over the life of the contract. Steamer projects him for .7 WAR next year. He was brutal overall last year but as recent as 2013 he had an OPS of .854 against righties to he may still offer something against righties.

None of these offers are perfect but if the could get the Dodgers to pick up the remaining Ubaldo contract and any of these moves could prevent them from giving Markakis a four year deal I would at least explore it.

Sean
Guest
Sean
1 year 5 months ago

This article is entirely about on field value.I have to think the Orioles see him a bit differently.

They can market Nick Markakis.

The Orioles can sell tickets with him.

If they can keep him until he retires and the Orioles can keep on marketing him as the next Orioles lifer, put him in the team hall of fame and trot him out at events for the next 50 years.

There is value is all these things. I don’t know how much. Probably not enough to warrant 4/50, but the Orioles must have some accountants who have quantified this.

Brooks
Guest
Brooks
1 year 5 months ago

The only people who would pay just to see Markakis play are related to Markakis. Only they wouldn’t be paying either because their tickets would be comped.

Attendance declined in Baltimore when they began becoming perennial losers after the 1997 season. It declined although Cal Ripken was in the lineup everyday. In Ripken’s farewell season, attendance declined by 200,000 from the year before. The reason: the O’s were 11 games worse than the year before. Attendance kept declining when Markakis was having his best years. Attendance continued to decline until the Orioles started winning again.

If fans didn’t pay just to see Cal Ripken, the franchise’s greatest player and an Oriole in utero, they sure as shit aren’t coming just to see Markakis.

Sure, Baltimore can market Markakis. But a winning team needs no marketing. Markakis is far too pricey for the value he provides, and he is on the wrong side of 30. So the smart move for Baltimore would be to find a cheaper replacement – and there are plenty of options to pursue.

Petriello is spot on.

Tampa Bay Marketing Department
Guest
Tampa Bay Marketing Department
1 year 5 months ago

Don’t tell our GM!

John Hart
Guest
John Hart
1 year 5 months ago

We’ll get tons of money because of his appeal

chuckb
Guest
chuckb
1 year 5 months ago

I can’t tell if this is serious or not.

The O’s can market winning, not mediocre, overpaid, aging ballplayers.

Luke
Guest
Luke
1 year 5 months ago

“he’s already shown that the last two years are the start of his decline.”

I don’t get this interpretation. 2013 was certainly a huge decline, but then wasn’t 2014 a major bounce back? Not that I disagree that 4/$52M is a major overpay.

If you’re going to look at 2013-14, you should also look at 2012-14. Teams could easily look at those 3 seasons and conclude that 2013 is the outlier and 2012 and 2014 are more representative of Markakis’s true talent. He played at nearly a 3-WAR pace in 2012, and it’s quite possible that all the injuries and surgeries between 2012 and 2013 really slowed him down and hurt his batted ball authority in 2013.

Also, I think teams may value reliability, rightly or wrongly. Besides 2012 Markakis has played 147 games in every season of his career.

Again, I’m not saying any of this justifies 4 years and $52M. I just think he’s a better ballplayer than his 2.4 WAR over the last 2 seasons indicates.

BarryR
Guest
BarryR
1 year 5 months ago

In 2014 he bounced back from the worst season of his career to the second worst season of his career. This is hardly reason for optimism. I will be very surprised if he is a plus player in the second half of this contract and not a little surprised if he’s a drag on their lineup.

Spa City
Member
Member
Spa City
1 year 5 months ago

Two words: “Grit.”

Aidan
Guest
Aidan
1 year 5 months ago

Idk what it is about Markakis, but I have a lot of friends who are O’s fans who think the offseason would be a failure if they didn’t resign him. I guess the difference comes from what he’s done in the past — he’s had some good seasons, including his very good 2008 season — and that he’s a fan-favorite, the rare home-grown guy who goes through all the losing and mediocrity to emerge as a winner on the same team. But it doesn’t make sense to me in the slightest for all the reasons you pointed out, Mike.

tz
Guest
tz
1 year 5 months ago

BREAKING NEWS: John Hart is an idiot.

Dumping Jason Heyward so you can throw $44 million at Nick Markakis?

Man, I’m really beginning to wish Dayton Moore had been the GM instead of Wren/Hart.

John Hart is an idiot. DAMN!!!!!!!!

T.A. Gaywater
Guest
T.A. Gaywater
1 year 5 months ago

It wasn’t a trade.

T.A. Gaywater
Guest
T.A. Gaywater
1 year 5 months ago

No one said they were equals. It wasn’t a trade.

tz
Guest
tz
1 year 5 months ago

It’s the inconsistent philosophy that’s the killer here. If you’re building long-term you do NOT commit $44 million over 4 years to a 31-year old guy whose upside is being an average corner OF.

I mean, how much would it have cost the Braves to acquire someone even a little bit younger, with a little bit of upside, say, Michael Saunders.

jsolid
Guest
jsolid
1 year 5 months ago

That was a lot of ink spilled about how Markakis is an unappealing free agent, and then how he is a terrible fit for the Braves … and then, hours later, that happened.
Hah!
I guess John Hart does not read Fangraphs.

tz
Guest
tz
1 year 5 months ago

I’m beginning to wonder if he can read at all. How stupid can you be?

Paul
Member
1 year 5 months ago

All I’ve got is that he’s solid but not great, isn’t beyond a random great season or too, and his teammates love him as a teammate. The last item might be the most important.

Also, the Braves desperately need a somewhat veteran presence to teach the kids a lesson or two in how to behave as professionals.

Giants Dynasty
Guest
Giants Dynasty
1 year 5 months ago

Replacing Heyward with Markakis

– work of art

Vil
Member
Vil
1 year 5 months ago

Thank you Mr. Hart. Thank you. A lot of Orioles fans loved the guy because of his work ethic and grit and didn’t care that much about what sabermetrics guys said.

At the fireworks display in September celebrating the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Baltimore, I saw nearly as many Markakis jerseys as Machado’s. Almost as if they were sending a message to the front office.

Fortunately, the front office resisted public pressure and did the right thing, or at least the Braves beat them to the punch.

Avattoir
Guest
Avattoir
1 year 5 months ago

Somebody associated with each and every other team reported as “interested” in Markakis yet already with one or more serviceable replacement types in their system, ought to send the Braves front office a big wet lipstick-encrusted thank you note.

tz
Guest
tz
1 year 5 months ago

Lol true. It just sucks that my favorite NL team has become the village idiot that saves the other teams from themselves.

bbspell22
Guest
bbspell22
1 year 5 months ago

Technically they replaced Heyward with Miller, Jenkins, Markakis, and hundreds of millions in savings.

tz
Guest
tz
1 year 5 months ago

Not quite hundreds of millions. If you look at Markakis getting $44 million for the next 4 years, you really should compare that to what Heyward would have gotten for a 3-year deal after this season and add that to the $7 million he’s getting for 2015. If you assume he’d get $15-25M per year, that’s a range of $52-82M over the next 4 years. So Markakis “saved” the Braves $8-38M over those 4 years.

And they’ve replaced a 25-year-old 5 WAR guy with the upside to improve another win or two with a 31-year-old 2 WAR guy with no upside. Unless you love Shelby Miller, it’s hard to see the Braves making up that difference in value, even if they use the “savings” from Heyward intelligently.

Dave Cornutt
Guest
Dave Cornutt
1 year 5 months ago

I think Miller has the upside, but it’s still a strange move, because (1) the money could have been better spent, and (2) Markakis is likely to really go into his decline in 2017, just as the fabled New Ballpark moment kicks in.

Radermecher
Member
Radermecher
1 year 5 months ago

Braves must be looking for,contact,and steady, with little upside.4 for 44m,strange,Birds sign Jiminez 4 for 50m in 13.Hows that working out.

Vil
Member
Vil
1 year 5 months ago

Badly. We have an over-priced middle reliever now.

But the injury to Bundy and Gausman not being ready to join the rotation yet kind of forced the move for Duquette.

Jesse
Guest
Jesse
1 year 5 months ago

I have watched Markakis play everyday for 10 years. He is a great defensive player with an excellent arm. Idon’t trust defensive metrics. Every Oriole fan and announcer as well as Buck Showalter constantly talks about him. People don’t run on him. He throws ppl out when needed. He is agood OBP guy who gets on base and plays every day and hits lefties better than righties. He has more hits than any Oriole in the last 8 years than any player in Oriole history in an 8year period. He is adored in thelocker room. Adam Jones is furious about this. That defensive metrics considers him a below avg outfielder is absurd.

Fangraphs has predicted O’s for last place 3 years in a row and one of the reason they are always wrong is because of not evaluating Markakis correctly.

wpDiscuz