Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Erstad's replacement

I'm hoping the White Sox resign Paul Konerko, because he's not likely to be worth the kind of money he's supposed to get over the next 4-5 years. The big A is not as friendly to homers as Chicago either. Here's what my almighty computer projects for Konerko next year if he plays for the Angels:

AB H BA HR RBI OBP SLG LWruns (vs average at position)
537 141 .262 27 89 .352 .459 +6

And if Casey Kotchman gets the job?
522 135 .259 14 73 .327 .403 -11

17 runs. Throw in defense (Konerko is below average, Kotchman at least average) and the gap narrows to about 10 runs, or one win. Is one win worth 12 million dollars? Not yet, though Ben Bernanke may have something to say about that in the future.

I'm pretty confidant in the Konerko projection, he's been around long enough to know what kind of player he is. Put him into a tougher park and add age and there should be a homerun dropoff. For Kotchman, that projection is low end, based partially on a tough start at AAA Salt Lake. I think he could esaily hit .290 and with more power, but a a good projection is a 50/50 over/under. I'm happy sticking with a 14 homer estimate.

Beyond 2006, Konerko gets worse and Kotchman gets better. For 2006, that one win might be the difference between Anaheim and Oakland, as in 2004. For 10-12 million (40-50 over the life of the deal) I'm willing to bet it won't be.

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