Keeping it real, volume 22: Didi

Wednesday afternoon Simpleton Summer Camp (YES network) posted graphics comparing Didi Gregorius, Carlos Correa and Francisco Lindor, with the implication and dialogue that Didi is in the discussion with them as to who is the best short stop in baseball.

I get you want to pump up your own guy.  I get data and opinions can be spun in different manners to get the desired outcome you seek.

But. STOP. 

Didi is a very good player.  He is not one of the best short stops in baseball.  If you think he is, my recommendation is to keep that to yourself, because the kids who don’t do their homework (like the Simpleton Summer Camp staff and the yahoos in the stands who booed Stanton on Tuesday) are the only ones who agree with you.

For starters, the Simpleton Summer Camp focused on Home Runs and Runs Batted In for comparative purposes.  This is what I’d call…overly simplistic.

They also, after mentioning that Didi missed time last year, neglected to mention that Correa missed more time than Didi, and probably would’ve been the AL MVP had he played a full season.  Stop – don’t even think about sending me you root for the little guy biases – look at the numbers:  Correa produced more value per game last year for the champion Astros than his teammate and MVP winner Jose Altuve.

Simpletons, in their discussion regarding the best SS in the game, also neglected to mention, I don’t know, Andrelton Simmons, Corey Seager, Zack Cozart, Xander Boegarts and Manny Machado.  Those players, along with Correa and Lindor are also better than Didi.  (With the caveats that Cozart was just recently moved away from short because he plays with Simmons, and Machado just moved to SS).

Keeping it real:  2015-2018, WAR:

Player: WAR ’15-‘18
Correa 16.6
Lindor 16
Simmons 15.1
Seager 13.3
Brandon Crawford 12.6
Bogaerts 10.6
Elvis Andrus 10.5
Addison Russell 10
Cozart 9.1
Didi 9.1

 

He’s also 10th in OPS+ among SS from ’15 to ’18 and 13th in defensive WAR.

But Didi has improved markedly over the past year!  You’re counting stats from before his progession!”

Well there can be caveats all around here:  Correa, Bogaerts, Seager, Lindor, Russell and Machado are all younger than Didi.  I could argue Didi has hit his ceiling, the others haven’t.  But I’ll bite…

Here are WAR among SS from the beginning of last season to today: (again, not including Machado).

Player WAR ’17 – today
Simmons 7.1
Correa 6.3
Seager 5.6
Lindor 5.5
Cozart 5
Andrus 4.7
Didi 3.7

Additionally, among SS from ’17 to today Didi is 6th in OPS+ and 13th in defensive WAR.

For further context, in addition to no Machado on this list whose value increases with his move to SS, Bogaerts played injured most of last season.

For the one millionth time:  I like Didi.  He’s a very good player and is a hell of a lot of fun.  But keep it real.  If you think he’s one of the best SS in baseball, you need to watch more baseball.

You want guys on your team to pump up?  Judge is underrated (yes, he is).  Sanchez is underrated.  Tanaka is underrated.  Get on top of that mountain and scream their names.

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