NotGraphs Baseball


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  1. Jack Cust. No one has ever truly wanted Jack Cust, but yet some have come to realize having Jack Cust can be a very good thing.

    Comment by Scott B. — July 28, 2011 @ 11:56 am

  2. Prince Fielder

    Comment by shermanator91 — July 28, 2011 @ 11:58 am

  3. Matt Stairs

    Comment by OLL — July 28, 2011 @ 12:03 pm

  4. Jose Molina

    Comment by Greg — July 28, 2011 @ 12:05 pm

  5. That was my first thought as well.

    Comment by pbruins92 — July 28, 2011 @ 12:05 pm

  6. Justin Turner

    Comment by Musially — July 28, 2011 @ 12:08 pm

  7. There was nothing inherently wrong with the couch, it just broke down quickly. In that spirit, I suggest either Pedro Feliciano or Jake Peavy.

    Comment by Dwade19 — July 28, 2011 @ 12:08 pm

  8. Eric Hinske. Serviceable bat (or better), looks like a couch in the field.

    Comment by fjrobinson44 — July 28, 2011 @ 12:10 pm

  9. Arthur Rhodes.

    Comment by Navin Vaswani — July 28, 2011 @ 12:16 pm

  10. Liván Hernández

    Comment by Yirmiyahu — July 28, 2011 @ 12:19 pm

  11. Colby Rasmus

    too soon?

    Comment by Todd — July 28, 2011 @ 12:20 pm

  12. Lyle Overbay

    Comment by Jay — July 28, 2011 @ 12:27 pm

  13. Jack Cust sounds like the ideal fit for this.

    Comment by Jacob Smith — July 28, 2011 @ 12:27 pm

  14. I am going to second the Eric Hinske

    Comment by Andrew — July 28, 2011 @ 12:37 pm

  15. A fine suggestion.

    Comment by Yirmiyahu — July 28, 2011 @ 12:47 pm

  16. Molina makes sense. First off he definately looks like a couch. He`s easy going, good defensively and you can just sit back and get comfy watching him. He doesn`t seem that great but he is definately not bad. He`s cheap, useful, and he does the job but the more he plays the less comfortable it is, kind of like after you sit on an old couch for too long.

    Comment by shockey12 — July 28, 2011 @ 12:59 pm

  17. My immediate thought upon seeing the title of the article was Yuniesky Betancourt. Despite the best intentions of those above who have made suggestions, I am not swayed.

    Comment by filihok — July 28, 2011 @ 12:59 pm

  18. jose molina that is.

    Comment by shockey12 — July 28, 2011 @ 12:59 pm

  19. Brad Penny. (4500 pennies?)

    Comment by buddy — July 28, 2011 @ 1:03 pm

  20. Alex Rios

    Comment by Scott Kazmir's Talent — July 28, 2011 @ 1:04 pm

  21. Yuni costs a lot more than $45 and is far less useful than the couch described above.

    Comment by Yirmiyahu — July 28, 2011 @ 1:05 pm

  22. How about Edwin Jackson? Traded 5 times in the last 3 years. Like a cheap piece of furniture, he makes you go “Oohh, this might be a nice value.”

    And within a year, you want nothing to do with it.

    Comment by ngranered — July 28, 2011 @ 1:22 pm

  23. Here’s another thing about the $45 couch. You didn’t buy it new for $45 dollars. No, you actually inherited it from an ex-roommate who left it behind when he moved out. He got it from an old girlfriend who got it from one of HER old roommates, who’s parents bought it for her at a neighbor’s yard sale.

    Mr $45 Couch has to have an extensive history of different teams on the back of his Topps card. Stairs has, by my count, twelve.

    Comment by Ben — July 28, 2011 @ 1:23 pm

  24. Carlos Lee (#45). Just over 6 feet. Was really nice when bought used but is now well below average and sticks out like an elephant in the room. The quality of the leather has deteriorated in particular. Heavy and rather difficult to move. Spent so much on it that it would be painful to toss even though it is now practically worthless. No one else seems to want it – even the garbage men (Sabean) won’t take it.

    Comment by reillocity — July 28, 2011 @ 1:23 pm

  25. As an owner of a $45 couch, I agree with this statement.

    Comment by Ryan — July 28, 2011 @ 1:47 pm

  26. Livan Hernandez immediately popped into my head. I think it’s a perfect fit.

    Comment by Steve — July 28, 2011 @ 1:53 pm

  27. I thought of Marcus Thames.

    Comment by Chuck Hussel — July 28, 2011 @ 2:01 pm

  28. The $45 isn’t in your long term plans and you don’t really even want it, but you just haven’t gotten around to buying a new one and putting this one out to pasture yet.

    I vote Willie Harris.

    Comment by steex — July 28, 2011 @ 2:07 pm

  29. Excellent – the $45 couch surely gets transferred about. So does Stairs.

    Comment by Stephanie — July 28, 2011 @ 2:09 pm

  30. My first though too; in the vein of “something you are resigned to.”

    Comment by JWP — July 28, 2011 @ 2:20 pm

  31. $20 bar-stool is more appropriate for Stairs. This moniker belongs to Hinske.

    Comment by EdwardM — July 28, 2011 @ 2:23 pm

  32. I’m sticking with Hinske, though Adam LaRoche or Lyle Overbay can also be candidates. I feel like it has to be a mediocre first baseman.

    Comment by Pat — July 28, 2011 @ 2:47 pm

  33. i think we’re missing one very important element in the couch’s life cycle: it’s original purchase.

    at some point (maybe early 90s) a working man came home one night from sears, possibly macy’s, with this couch strapped to his truck. he brought it into his home and said, “here, family, is our new couch”. the family welcomed it and immediately envisioned rockwellian thanksgivings, super bowls, world series and other important events that it would witness. yes, while no one would call it the best couch in the world, it’s arrival was nonetheless met with fanfare and promise. things were going to be okay for the family that bought that couch.

    years later, we look at the couch and often forget the promise it once held. oh, sure, it occasionally has its moments, but it’s a shell of its former self. it’s changed hands a lot, but it’s never been sent to the dumpster. no, it is still serviceable.

    i can’t think of anyone but livan hernandez who best embodies “45 dollar couch” life cycle and current condition.

    Comment by joshcohen — July 28, 2011 @ 2:59 pm

  34. Cesar Izturis, Yuni, or McClouth

    Comment by Kyle — July 28, 2011 @ 2:59 pm

  35. Well I know Tigers fans would agree that this could pertain to Brandon Inge. Until recently the organization stuck with him no matter what. He was no where near a ideal 3rd baseman but he was good enough for the Tigers too keep around far too long.

    Comment by Jeff — July 28, 2011 @ 3:05 pm

  36. People seem to be focusing on players who look like couches, and that misses the point. A $45 couch is something everyone needs one of but doesn’t want to think about. You’ll go out and splurge on a great new plasma TV before you upgrade the couch.

    The position of couch screams infielder.
    SP’s and big bats are more like fancy tech toys. A great couch in a cheap house looks ugly and stands out (Hanley Ramirez & FLA). Some really nice homes have a horrible couch – but you don’t care too much because the other stuff is so nice (Tejada & SF).

    A $45 couch – that’s a journeyman infielder.
    You’re in a dump of a home, trying to make improvements. No one starts by locking down an elite second baseman. You start with pitching and great bats (which are usually the corner guys). Then maybe down the road you finally throw out the couch and put in something nicer. Sometimes you shift the couch around because you don’t really want to get rid of it but can’t justify keeping it in the middle of the room. Utility/Journeyman infielder all the way!

    So, $45 couch types:
    Craig Counsell
    Miguel Cairo
    Jamey Carroll (he came up as an Expo, so he’s the $45 Chesterfield)

    Comment by Mac — July 28, 2011 @ 3:14 pm

  37. Your description reaffirms my vote for Willie Harris (even though he now tends to see more OF time).

    Comment by steex — July 28, 2011 @ 3:29 pm

  38. “Sometimes you shift the couch around because you don’t really want to get rid of it but can’t justify keeping it in the middle of the room”

    Plus! Somebody always wants him, is initially happy to have him, uses the crap out of him, then realizes they can do way better and he’s kind of an eyesore, then he sits in the garage waiting for the next team to come get him.

    Mark Kotsay!! Altho he inexplicably keeps ending up in the middle of the room (batting order).

    Like when Braun missed some games, not only did Kotsay play LF, he batted in Braun’s 3 hole ahead of Hart (1), Weeks (5), Fielder (4)

    Comment by Melkman — July 28, 2011 @ 3:36 pm

  39. This isn’t $45 million dollar couch

    Comment by AK707 — July 28, 2011 @ 3:38 pm

  40. Cody Ransom
    Chad Gaudin
    Bret Tomko

    Comment by Jose — July 28, 2011 @ 3:54 pm

  41. Ty Wigginton

    Comment by jason — July 28, 2011 @ 3:58 pm

  42. it HAS to be Edwin Jackson

    Comment by Erik Archer — July 28, 2011 @ 4:28 pm

  43. It seems appropriate that all those guys are or were Pirates. Can they be the $45 couch franchise?

    Comment by Rick — July 28, 2011 @ 4:34 pm

  44. Mike Scioscia’s obsession with Jeff Mathis. Close the thread we are done.

    Comment by ettin — July 28, 2011 @ 4:42 pm

  45. Jonny Gomes

    Comment by bcarsley22 — July 28, 2011 @ 4:45 pm

  46. Stairs was my first thought on this. Great minds think like me!

    Comment by TheGrandSlamwich — July 28, 2011 @ 5:00 pm

  47. Russell Branyan

    Comment by matt51306 — July 28, 2011 @ 5:01 pm

  48. I love this nickname series.

    Matt Stairs was the first to come to my mind and I’ll stand by that. He was always functionable and usefull piece of furniture, but never a permanent fixture.

    Comment by TheGrandSlamwich — July 28, 2011 @ 5:04 pm

  49. I clicked on the comments section just to elect Hinske for the ballot. I think it’s a perfect fit.

    Comment by Pelly — July 28, 2011 @ 5:27 pm

  50. Aubrey Huff

    Comment by Padman Jones — July 28, 2011 @ 5:38 pm

  51. Gotta be Edwin Jackson. Dude gets passed around MLB like a $45 Dollar Couch.

    Comment by Tommy Lasordas Pasta — July 28, 2011 @ 6:24 pm

  52. The thing about a couch is that it is hard to sell/get rid of because you need to sell it to someone who has a truck and has buddies who can help move it. In my view this must also imply a big bad contract that is difficult to do away with. And I think its funnier to give this nickname to someone who looks like a couch, so I vote Carlos Lee.

    Comment by topper009 — July 28, 2011 @ 8:27 pm

  53. Ben, cogent analysis. The transactional history (and multitude of owners) of the chattel is of prime import. Furthermore, such a couch is unavoidably misshapen and lumpy, two adjectives easily transferable to Mr. Stairs.

    Comment by mmulvihill76 — July 28, 2011 @ 8:27 pm

  54. Matt Stairs got DFA’d Wednesday in the Gomes trade aftermath. He might be the $45 Couch sitting by the curb waiting to go to the landfill.

    Comment by Del B. Vista — July 28, 2011 @ 10:05 pm

  55. I just meant that he looks like a couch

    Comment by shermanator91 — July 29, 2011 @ 12:04 am

  56. It’s got to be Carlos Lee. He even wears #45.

    Comment by Devil's Advocate — July 29, 2011 @ 1:10 am

  57. Nick Punto.

    Comment by Hamjeesh — July 29, 2011 @ 1:28 am

  58. Willie Bloomquist: the definition of replaceable, and yet somehow someone’s always finding a reason to keep him around. There’s no reason for it, since he’s not doing anything that you can’t have somebody else do, but damn it if you’re going to let someone else do it instead of him. He’s right on the boundary of major leaguer and minor leaguer, but always on the right side of that boundary, always, somehow, usable.

    He may not look quite like a couch, but it’s not like he doesn’t not look like a couch, is it?

    Comment by Theo — July 29, 2011 @ 5:00 am

  59. I like the Bloomquist idea, but I think Stairs would be more comfortable.

    Comment by TheGrandSlamwich — July 29, 2011 @ 8:01 am

  60. An expensive couch.

    Comment by Yirmiyahu — July 29, 2011 @ 12:05 pm

  61. Agreed. Cheap and been around forever, but still quite serviceable. You get what you pay for (no more, no less.).

    Comment by Yirmiyahu — July 29, 2011 @ 12:08 pm

  62. No. Jeff Mathis is more like the security blanket that Scioscia’s been carrying around 10 years after he should’ve outgrown it.

    Comment by Yirmiyahu — July 29, 2011 @ 12:11 pm

  63. DFA is the baseball equivalent of being put on Craigslist for 10 days.

    Comment by reillocity — July 29, 2011 @ 10:37 pm

  64. If a hitter, Matt Stairs.

    If a pitcher, Octavio Dotel. Dotel still looks like he can do all those things he could do when he was new, but it turns out that the springs are all shot on one side of him. And, somehow, he got packaged up with some newer, nicer furniture just this week, for Grandpa Larussa to try out. Dotel has had 12 owners, in 12 years.

    Comment by Greg W — July 30, 2011 @ 9:28 pm

  65. Are you all unaware of the masterful work of one Francisco Cervelli? He is most couch-like while in full squat!

    Comment by MJM — August 1, 2011 @ 3:19 pm

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