Found October 07, 2013 on Obstructed View OLD:
I was reading the solidly-above-replacement-level Yankees blog rlyw.net this morning, and I came across a very interesting table. It listed the Runs Created at 2B for each team this year. I won't reproduce the whole list (seriously, check out that blog, it's interesting), but I share one thing: NYY: 123 RC CHC: 45 RC That's a difference of 78 RUNS. It's really hard to imagine that one player could offensively be worth almost a run every other game over another MLB player, but here it is. Of course, Robinson Cano is the best 2B in the game, a HOF hitting his prime. When you consider the positional median is at 78 RC, he's an extremely good piece to have.  It's hard to believe that a team can provide so little value at a position, but that's what Darwin Barney does. Shockingly, Toronto got even less production from 2B this year, but the two teams are still outliers. You replace Barney with a bottom-quarter 2B and you'd still pick up around 20 runs.  If we adjust for Defensive Run Saved (the first run-based defensive stat I could think of), the gap closes…but not considerably. Barney saved 11 runs with his glove this year, but Cano saved 6. The gap is still 72 runs, which is roughly 7 wins from one position alone! I'm not trying to use this as an argument to sign Robinson Cano. It's not. What I am saying is that even with Barney's defensive value, he's still one of the worst 2 or 3 2B in baseball right now. The Cubs can add 3 to 4 wins just by being average at second base next year. Can Alcantara be an average 2B next year? It's certainly possible. Even if he's bottom-quarter, though, he's probably still worth more than Barney. Barney's value is that he's a premium defensive replacement at 2B/SS and spot starter. Nothing more.  Barney has now played the 2B for the bulk of 3 consecutive seasons. In those seasons, his maximal line was .276/.313/.353, which was a wOBA of .294, "good" for a wRC+ of 79. His defensive wizardry was enough to convince BP that his WARP in '11 and '12 was 1.3 and 2.3, respectively. However, this year, BP had him at -2.0, with a True Average right at the Mendoza line. BP didn't even like his fielding this year, with a FRAA (Fielding Runs Above Average) at -1.7, a change of 13 runs from 2011. I'm willing to give Barney the benefit of the doubt (and chalk this up to the relatively unreliable nature of defensive statistics).  Fortunately (if that's the right word) for Darwin, his splits are essentially even, with an OBP of .306 and .303 agaisnt lefties and righties respectively. He's sub-replacement level from both sides of the plate, but just so, so he'll find work on some team's bench for a few years, until the shine on his glove wears off. If the Cubs are serious about contending in 2014, though, Barney just can't be a starter. He just can't be.  
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Yankees: Cano works hard despite appearance

You are not the only one who has seen Robinson Cano jog to first base exerting a tepid effort that harms his reputation and perhaps his earning power? Joe Girardi and his coaches reveal scores of appeals to Cano about how bad the visual looks — both to the fans and to impressionable younger Yankees — and that it is quite frankly not the way any major leaguer should play. Yet...

Steinbrenner says Yanks will do everything they can for Cano, ‘within reason’

The Yankees began their offseason by focusing on re-signing manager Joe Girardi as quickly as possible and preventing him from hitting the open market. As Hal Steinbrenner made clear on Tuesday the team will take a very different approach with Robinson Cano. “It sounds like he wants to go out and test the market and talk to whoever he needs or wants to talk to" the Yankees...

Cubs rumors: Cubs will top Yankees' offer to Joe Girardi

Even before the official termination of Chicago Cubs manager Dale Sveum, speculation began about the possibility of signing Joe Girardi to manage the Cubs. Our own Robert Murray recently explained the Cubs' serious interest in bringing Girardi to Wrigley Field. Now, we know a little more of just how serious Cubs team president Theo Epstein may be. The Chicago Tribune'...

New York Yankees Owner Hal Steinbrenner Calls 2013 “Disappointing”

New York Yankees principal owner Hal Steinbrenner took to the radio today to discuss the issues surrounding team, mentioning he was “disappointed” by the Yankees’ performance this season, but reiterated several times that the Yankees are not going to break the bank this offseason to make it back to the playoffs in 2014. “It’s important, and it’s certainly a goal we take...

Manny Acta arrives in Chicago to meet with Cubs

The Cubs are kicking their managerial search into gear as they await word on whether or not their top candidate New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi will spurn the Yankees' new contract offer to discuss a move to Chicago. Sources have confirmed that former Indians and Nationals skipper Manny Acta is in Chicago today to meet with Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer. Acta is considered...

Yankees Robinson Cano’s son’s mother wants an upgrade from her $500 monthly child support payment

Yankees Robinson Cano is set to become a free agent once the season ends and is looking to add to the $58 million he’s earned during his MLB career. But one thing that plagues most athletes has bypassed the slugger. Cano only wants to $500-$600 per month for his three-year-old son with Jackelin Castro who resides in the Dominican Republic. Jackelin Castro says Castro and the...

Hank Steinbrenner hopeful Joe Girardi returns

Hank Steinbrenner wants Joe Girardi to remain with the New York Yankees and is awaiting the manager's decision on a new contract. Girardi's current deal expires at the end of the month, and the team offered a new agreement last week. ''It's up to him now,'' Steinbrenner, the team's co-chairman, said Tuesday. The Yankees failed to make the playoffs...

Rumors: Nationals, Blue Jays interested in trading for Cubs' Jeff Samardzija

The hottest rumor involving the Cubs right now is whether or not they will land Joe Girardi as their next manager, but that may not be the only thing you'll want to keep an eye on. The Toronto Blue Jays and Washington Nationals are interested in trading for Cubs starting pitcher Jeff Samardzija, according to Tom Loxas Chicago Now and John Arguello of Cubs Now. The Blue...

Yankees awaiting Girardi’s decision

When Brian Cashman had his end-of-season press conference last week at Yankee Stadium, he said the Yankees would give Joe Girardi a “Real good reason to stay.” This past Friday, the organization made an offer to the soon-to-be 43-year-old manager, and are now waiting for a decision. While the parameters of the deal are unknown, the offer is believed to be between $4 million-...

Who Could Replace Joe Girardi?

We've talked a lot over the past few days about Joe Girardi's contract situation as he decides his future with the Yankees, but who would replace him if he decided he wanted to leave the Yankees? ESPN recently put out a list answering just that question. There are some surprises on the list, as well as some household names: Don Mattingly Pete Mackanin Tony...

Yankees offer Joe Girardi 3-year deal worth $12-$15 million, per report

Girardi is set to become one of the highest paid managers in baseball should he accept the offer. The New York Yankees' "generous offer" to Manager Joe Girardi is reportedly a three year deal worth between $12-15 million according to the Star-Ledger. The low end of that would still represent a 33 percent increase in salary for Girardi who made $3 million in 2013....

Manny Acta intrigued by opportunity with Cubs

Manny Acta – who has managed organizations through the early phases of rebuilding without seeing the payoff – wants to help take the Cubs to the next level. While waiting for Joe Girardi to give the New York Yankees some answers about his future people familiar with Acta and Cubs executives describe a potential fit a Plan B option. Acta interviewed on Monday in Chicago where...

A-Rod hearing set to resume for 3 days next week

Alex Rodriguez’s appeal hearing against Major League Baseball is set to resume on Wednesday Oct. 16 according to multiple industry sources. The hearing will last through the end of next week and is then expected to adjourn again until after the World Series. The first week of the hearing was dominated by the testimony of MLB star witness Anthony Bosch the founder of the now-closed...

Acta, Renteria candidates for Cubs' manager job

Former major league manager Manny Acta and San Diego Padres bench coach Rick Renteria have emerged as candidates for the job as Chicago Cubs' manager a source familiar with the situation confirmed Monday. The Cubs continue to await word from Joe Girardi on whether he will sign a new deal with the New York Yankees. Acta 44 has managed the Washington Nationals (2007-09) and Cleveland...

6 Sports Moments We Wish We Saw Live

We’re sure you didn’t miss it a few weeks ago, but after Derek Jeter and Andy Pettitte went to the mound and removed their (now) former teammate, Mariano Rivera, from the Yankees Stadium mound for the last time—choking us up more than we have in awhile—we started thinking about how cool it must have been […]
MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.