Thursday, June 25, 2009

Give Jorge some love...

David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution has come out and said that Brian McCann and Joe Mauer are two of the best hitting catchers of his lifetime.

I can't argue with Joe Mauer, not one bit. He's been nothing short of astonishing. But just in terms of hitting? Mike Piazza is the obvious question here, who is almost certainly the best offensive catcher with any reasonable # of at bats in the history of the game. But there's another who you can't dismiss, Jorge Posada.

Brian McCann, in his 5 years playing in the majors, has a 124 OPS+. Jorge Posada, over 15 years has......a 124 OPS+.

Now, McCann is very young, still 25. He's still coming into his own. But let me make it very clear: It's unlikely that 10 years from now his OPS+ will still be as high as 124+. There just aren't many catchers, across the history of major league baseball, who have performed to such a high level over such a long time. And all of them who have (correct me if you know of someone I haven't seen) are in the hall of fame, or have not yet been eligible to be on the ballot (Piazza). Sure thing HOF Ivan Rodriguez (bleh) checks in at a yawn-inducing 109 OPS+.

Jorge Posada is one of the most underrated players in the majors today, something very hard to be while a member of the New York Yankees. It's not just a coincidence that their not making the playoffs since 1995 was also the year they lost Posada for the vast majority of the season (though Wang certainly did his part).

Of course, David O'Brien's home newspaper has nothing to do with him including Atlanta catcher Brian McCann, and not a very obviously more deserving player.

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