The Mockingbird

Just Sayin’

with 8 comments

By now Frank Thomas has had almost as many plate appearances for the Athletics (64) as he had for the Jays (72) before he was released on April 20th. Over that time he has hit: 269/.406/.365

Over the same stretch last year, Thomas hit an almost identical: .267/.356/.400

Meanwhile, only three Blue Jays have been hitting better than he has with the A’s:

Scott Rolen: .320/.386/.580
Greg Zaun: .319/.407/.426
Lyle Overbay: .298/.400/.421

Some combination of these players have seen more playing time in his absence and flopped mightily:

Shannon Stewart: .204/.259/.259
Rod Barajas: .194/.265/.226
Adam Lind: .053/.100/.053
Matt Stairs: .233/.281/.433
Mench 1-6, Diaz 0-4

Annnnd…the rest of the team has been slugging and getting on base just about as badly as he was before he was released:

Vernon Wells: .246/.296/.400
Alex Rios: .240/.266/.373
David Eckstein: .212/.255/.346
Aaron Hill: .211/.263/.310
John Mcdonald: .273/.273/.364

I know, I know…it was really about the 10 million next year. But this was sold as a baseball move. So far it’s not looking like there was anything seriously wrong with him, that maybe small sample sizes are really not such amazing predictive forces (*cough* Lind *cough*), that Frank’s disastrous starts aren’t completely a “myth”, and that there really was no better option anyway.

This concludes your downer post of the day!


Written by halejon

May 11, 2008 at 10:03 am

Posted in Seriousness

8 Responses

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  1. Even if the Yanks supposedly went into Iraq to root out WMDs, that doesn’t change the fact the Saddam was a dick who needed to be chased from power. The ends justify the means is what I’m saying.

    johnny was

    May 11, 2008 at 11:15 am

  2. That’s a really unfortunate analogy, both in terms of motivation and results…

    It’s probably going to end up a good business decision for next year. But most people swallowed the line that they “can’t wait for him to heat up this year” or “need to put the best team on the field”, and that this was really done to make the team better now. It sure hasn’t and the gap is likely to widen through the summer.

    Mostly this post is directed at the 90% of fans who have zero tolerance for extended slumps and just loved the move without knowing anything about the vesting situation because it was “proactive”, “sent a message”, and Thomas is slow


    May 11, 2008 at 1:20 pm

  3. So if they’d benched him but not released him, let him poison the clubhouse for a while, and then kept hitting like this, do you think they would have put him back in the lineup?


    May 11, 2008 at 2:35 pm

  4. I am still wondering why none of the media went to Denbo to get a quote. I really want to know what he thought of Thomas.


    May 11, 2008 at 5:25 pm

  5. Torgen: Sure. I mean between him and Stewart it’s kind of a slam dunk, no? Or between Thomas now and Wilkerson. Plus the guilt factor of not wanting to waste 10 mil on the bench.

    Brent: That’s a good question…would take a little sleuthing because Denbo and the other coaches (except Gibby) don’t really make themselves available in the clubhouse, but I wonder why not a peep. Maybe he was just told to be quiet because they didn’t want to stir up anything by saying something bad about Thomas on the way out of the door. J.P. did try his best to make this sound like it was a mutual decision and both sides were happy, which he needed to keep the players association from going bonkers.

    I did hear from some scout that he looked like he was “on rollerskates” in the box, and they said in the official release someone or other (who else could it be?) in the Jays organization was concerned about the deep crouch Frank was using to catch up to the outside pitch. I liked what someone said on batters box though- for all this talk about losing bat speed, Frank never really had good bat speed, he was just strong and selective. And from the pitch data, he wasn’t really getting beaten on fastballs like everyone thought, he was just making weak contact on them and flailing at breaking pitches.


    May 11, 2008 at 8:05 pm

  6. Brent: That’s a good question…would take a little sleuthing because Denbo and the other coaches (except Gibby) don’t really make themselves available in the clubhouse

    C’mon….Sure they do.


    May 12, 2008 at 7:09 am

  7. I guess just to real media types. You have no idea how long I looked for Arnsberg about that cut fastball from Burnett thing.


    May 12, 2008 at 10:23 am

  8. HA! From the Jays’ main page: “Gary Denbo has proved to be one of the more elusive members of the Blue Jays’ coaching staff.”

    Good Sleuthing Bastian…


    May 12, 2008 at 7:42 pm

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