Saturday, September 25, 2010

Evan Longoria

Evan Longoria was one of the trendiest pre-season picks for AL MVP.  He's had a very good year, but he's not going to win the MVP.  Compared to the lofty expectations, his season (.294, 22 HR, 104 RBI) seems like a bit of a disappointment.  The primary reason for the disappointment is that he had 33 HR last year and regressed to only 22 (and counting) this year. 

In other respects, (BA, 2B, SB, SO), he has improved over last year.  Considering all of that, I was a little surprised to see that he has the highest WAR (wins above replacement) of any player in baseball by a fairly wide margin.

WAR (100+ PA) 2010
7.6 Evan Longoria (Rays)
6.7 Miguel Cabrera (Tigers)
6.6 Shin-Soo Choo (Indians)
6.5 Albert Pujols (Cardinals)
6.2 Adrian Gonzalez (Padres)

45+ 2B, 6.5+ WAR, 3B (100+ G), (1900-present)
Red Rolfe 1939
Wade Boggs 1986, 1988, 1989
Scott Rolen 1998
Miguel Cabrera 2006
Evan Longoria 2010

If he gets hot (although he'll miss the rest of the weekend with a quad injury), he could finish with a .300 BA, 25 HR, 100 RBI, 100 R and 50 2B, in addition to possibly another Gold Glove.  The Rays might be worried that he's becoming another David Wright, who continues to be productive, but who have seen a decline in power (26, 30, 33, 10, 25). 

It will be interesting to see if the experts pick him as the preseason MVP again or if they're scared away by the weak power numbers.  Everything else is still trending in the right direction, but everyone will be watching for the power to come back. 

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