WMP is currently sitting in a strange place for a starting player in todays game, this place is the domain usually of middle infielders and guys who played during eras of diminished hitting and run production.

Of course I’m talking about the Mendoza line of On Base Percentage .300. For this season he’s plopped at .295, for his career .301.

After 773 plate apperances in MLB WMP has 44 walks, or roughly 1 every 17.6 times he strolls to the plate. While it’s not Shawon Dunston territory (31.3) it should be a red flag for many, even despite his 5.13 RC/27 this season and his 5.55 last year.

Most might retort that WMP has the ability to drive the ball at anytime and that walks shouldn’t matter. While I agree that walks aren’t the only thing that should drive a player I would feel better about WMP if his batting average was more Guillen or Anderson like.

Plate Coverage and bat on the ball skills compliment a slugger as does walks, making outs is still making outs and slugging a HR as often as you walk should only be rewarded when it gets down to the once every 12 times you step to to the plate.

Neither of these skills only make the payoff an extra base hit, which currently occurs in WMP once every 10 times he bats.

If the man didn’t have the abnormal amount of home runs his game would be downright scary.

Below is the list of players who had as many PA’s as WMP at the same age since 1950. with the same walk rate. The list is sorted by RC/27 and the ones on top tend to be the ones that bouyed their numbers with batting average, a tool that has yet to find it’s way to WMP’s Snap-On Tools drawers.

RUNS CREATED/GAME              RC/G      BB       AVG      OBA      SLG     RC/G    
1    Nomar Garciaparra          6.39       39     .298     .334     .527     1.22   
2    Juan Pierre                5.59       54     .323     .372     .392     0.24   
3    Shawn Green                5.38       54     .274     .324     .460     0.01   
4    Garry Maddox               5.23       38     .296     .325     .448     0.85   
5    Willie Wilson              5.20       45     .291     .332     .383     0.61   
6    Juan Samuel                5.05       32     .273     .308     .443     0.65   
7    Angel Berroa               5.04       39     .282     .334     .432     0.04   
8    Luis Polonia               4.97       53     .289     .336     .390     0.25   
9    Juan Encarnacion           4.71       24     .271     .304     .473     -.63   
10   Rich Coggins               4.67       58     .282     .331     .393     0.50   
11   Al Oliver                  4.66       56     .276     .328     .426     0.00   
12   Vernon Wells               4.60       36     .277     .308     .441     -.39   
13   Bert Campaneris            4.42       56     .266     .320     .380     0.14   
14   Fernando Tatis             4.42       50     .270     .319     .412     -.73   
15   Corey Patterson            4.32       43     .260     .293     .419     -.79   
16   Jeff Blauser               4.32       58     .260     .320     .395     -.10   
17   Tommie Agee                4.31       45     .262     .314     .425     0.19   
18   Jim Presley                4.21       50     .261     .301     .459     -.32   
19   Juan Uribe                 4.08       59     .258     .298     .408    -1.04   
20   Benito Santiago            4.07       42     .276     .304     .420     -.53   
21   Wilton Guerrero            4.06       22     .286     .305     .389    -1.04   
22   Michael Barrett            4.05       58     .264     .322     .384    -1.51   
23   Joe Pepitone               4.01       50     .258     .288     .434     -.44   
24   Bill Buckner               3.93       48     .283     .310     .367     -.46   
25   Warren Cromartie           3.93       37     .272     .310     .370     -.84   
26   Mike Ivie                  3.92       53     .268     .316     .384     -.48   
27   Ken Boswell                3.89       53     .268     .321     .364     -.22   
28   Shawon Dunston             3.89       40     .253     .288     .404     -.59   
29   Jose Guillen               3.89       58     .264     .303     .397    -1.30   
30   Joe Adcock                 3.79       48     .267     .311     .392    -1.36   
31   Rich Gedman                3.77       34     .271     .307     .392     -.62   
32   Mike Caruso                3.64       34     .278     .305     .343    -1.66   
33   Brian McRae                3.61       33     .266     .294     .379     -.84   
34   Jesus Alou                 3.60       26     .287     .312     .367     -.73   
35   Rey Quinones               3.50       50     .253     .302     .357    -1.32   
36   Bobby Valentine            3.45       47     .269     .309     .336     -.81   
37   Bobby Richardson           3.43       45     .272     .301     .332    -1.17   
38   Ollie Brown                3.35       58     .251     .307     .360     -.94   
39   Alex Gonzalez              3.33       37     .238     .273     .376    -2.21   
40   Reno Bertoia               3.31       55     .239     .297     .342    -1.33   
41   Harry Chiti                3.31       51     .239     .291     .368    -1.52   
42   Ozzie Guillen              3.27       46     .267     .287     .340    -1.45   
43   Mark Lewis                 3.23       40     .263     .298     .338    -1.20   
44   Barry Foote                3.17       52     .232     .278     .362    -1.30   
45   Ramon Santiago             3.10       46     .231     .297     .311    -1.88   
46   Ken Reitz                  3.03       34     .263     .287     .355    -1.41   
47   Billy Ripken               3.02       54     .239     .293     .294    -1.54   
48   Alex Trevino               3.00       47     .261     .307     .303    -1.47   
49   Dan Meyer                  2.99       44     .240     .280     .339    -1.15   
50   Tom Veryzer                2.97       51     .245     .295     .311    -1.15   
51   Clete Boyer                2.93       43     .227     .272     .331    -1.83   
52   Tito Fuentes               2.86       41     .238     .272     .326    -1.46   
53   Woody Woodward             2.81       53     .238     .286     .295    -1.57   
54   Cesar Izturis              2.77       41     .246     .270     .319    -2.31   
55   Jack Brohamer              2.76       59     .229     .278     .299    -1.23   
56   Don Kessinger              2.61       46     .246     .284     .275    -1.78   
57   Bob Didier                 2.55       54     .225     .281     .270    -1.93   
58   Hal Lanier                 2.33       42     .241     .263     .306    -2.04   
59   Jack Heidemann             2.16       48     .208     .260     .268    -2.24   
60   Luis Alvarado              2.01       34     .210     .245     .277    -2.11   

If you were to take the batting average matrix and make it below .260 then the list would be only 23 players

RUNS CREATED/GAME              RC/G      BB       AVG      OBA      SLG     RC/G    
1    Juan Uribe                 4.08       59     .258     .298     .408    -1.04   
2    Joe Pepitone               4.01       50     .258     .288     .434     -.44   
3    Shawon Dunston             3.89       40     .253     .288     .404     -.59   
4    Rey Quinones               3.50       50     .253     .302     .357    -1.32   
5    Ollie Brown                3.35       58     .251     .307     .360     -.94   
6    Alex Gonzalez              3.33       37     .238     .273     .376    -2.21   
7    Reno Bertoia               3.31       55     .239     .297     .342    -1.33   
8    Harry Chiti                3.31       51     .239     .291     .368    -1.52   
9    Barry Foote                3.17       52     .232     .278     .362    -1.30   
10   Ramon Santiago             3.10       46     .231     .297     .311    -1.88   
11   Billy Ripken               3.02       54     .239     .293     .294    -1.54   
12   Dan Meyer                  2.99       44     .240     .280     .339    -1.15   
13   Tom Veryzer                2.97       51     .245     .295     .311    -1.15   
14   Clete Boyer                2.93       43     .227     .272     .331    -1.83   
15   Tito Fuentes               2.86       41     .238     .272     .326    -1.46   
16   Woody Woodward             2.81       53     .238     .286     .295    -1.57   
17   Cesar Izturis              2.77       41     .246     .270     .319    -2.31   
18   Jack Brohamer              2.76       59     .229     .278     .299    -1.23   
19   Don Kessinger              2.61       46     .246     .284     .275    -1.78   
20   Bob Didier                 2.55       54     .225     .281     .270    -1.93   
21   Hal Lanier                 2.33       42     .241     .263     .306    -2.04   
22   Jack Heidemann             2.16       48     .208     .260     .268    -2.24   
23   Luis Alvarado              2.01       34     .210     .245     .277    -2.11   

If you make the list guys who had more than 40 HR’s at this time then it would only be one

RUNS CREATED/GAME              RC/G      BB       AVG      OBA      SLG      HR     
1    Joe Pepitone               4.01       50     .258     .288     .434       62   

Joe however needed 1200 plus PA’s to achieve that during the 60’s in a pitchers park.

Coupled with his defensive liabilities WMP is in my mind looking like a guy that should be moved ASAP while his power is still the part of his game that shines brightest.

It’s a gamble the Reds should take before they move Dunn or Kearns, no skill is harder to teach than walks and after that obtaining hits.

Offensivly the goal is to not make outs and currently the goal should also be to leverage the present offense into some guys that help prevent outs. WMP is a chip that is not as great as Dunn or currently devalued as Kearns, yet his new car smell is still enough to knock some folks socks off.

But if the Reds squeeze him tight in hope of creating a diamond they could lose the chance to turn him into gold on the marketplace.

But then again that’s the tune the Reds have been whistling since 1995 anyway.

Brian first met the greatest game in Detroit in 1968, that team played in a league called the “American League”…. but I digress.

Later after a family move he started a dalliance with the Cincinnati Reds, who perchance were in the midst of their greatest era. It was a romance that was greater than many could hope to be.

After barely stomaching the strike of 1981 Brian headed West but never forgot the Reds, and even despite being surrounded by Giants and A’s fans who tried to entice him with things both Green and Orange he found himself wondering what was up with Kal Daniels and was that kid from Moeller ever going to make us forget Davey.

A long time member of SABR and a baseball history junkie he currently lives in Portland and can be followed at @baseballminutia

Join the conversation! 4 Comments

  1. Brian, another great post. I’ve been saying the same thing..if you’re going to trade one of the young guys for pitching, trade Pena. I just haven’t been saying it as well.

  2. It will be difficult to get Pena to change his mental approach at the plate. If he could simply learn to lay off those breaking balls that end up in the dirt. he could raise both his BA and the number of BB thus his OBP.

    Easier said then done.

  3. The people that say Dunn is all or nothing need to look at WMP. If ANYBODY is all or nothing its WMP. He is still VERY young and he could become the next Sosa, but I would say the chances are pretty slim that he ever has a respectable OBP for a whole year, unless he hits over .300. Pitchers just aren’t going to groove fasballs at him forever.

  4. Brian, great work, as always. WMP is tradeable due to the lingering desire for physical tools in MLB. Let’s do it.

Comments are closed.

About Brian Erts

Brian first met the greatest game in Detroit in 1968, that team played in a league called the "American League".... but I digress. Later after a family move he started a dalliance with the Cincinnati Reds, who perchance were in the midst of their greatest era. It was a romance that was greater than many could hope to be. After barely stomaching the strike of 1981 Brian headed West but never forgot the Reds, and even despite being surrounded by Giants and A's fans who tried to entice him with things both Green and Orange he found himself wondering what was up with Kal Daniels and was that kid from Moeller ever going to make us forget Davey. A long time member of SABR and a baseball history junkie he currently lives in Portland and can be followed at @baseballminutia

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Reds - General