Originally written on Brewers Bar  |  Last updated 11/18/14
Royals_vs_twins_725c
(Image: Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images) It’s no secret Yuniesky Betancourt has turned about to be who fans thought he was, his uncharacteristically hot April notwithstanding.  While no one expects much from Yuni at this point, a recent blog post by NBC Sports columnist Joe Posnanski really put Betancourt’s lack of productivity in perspective: Betancourt is well under replacement level again -- 1.1 wins under replacement already. And he has a chance to do something. If the Brewers will just keep playing him every day, and he can maintain this pace, he will become the first player since Bill Bergen more than 100 years ago to score SIX CONSECUTIVE SEASONS of negative WAR. Since Posnanski isn’t local, he seems astonished at how Yuni has been used so far this season, like playing him at first base, and batting him fifth or fourth in the lineup.  (In fairness, Yuni went 2-for-5 his first time batting cleanup.)  The Brewers have had a number of key injuries, and the middle of the lineup was underperforming in the first two months of the season, so throwing Yuni out there had a certain “well, why the hell not?” quality to it.  Still, anyone trying to make the case that Betancourt isn’t an ineffective player would have their work cut out for them. It is interesting to consider how Yuni has been a beneficiary of circumstance.  He’s been re-signed by two teams – Kansas City and Milwaukee – that both knew he was average at best.  With his current stint in Milwaukee, Betancourt seems to have a job primarily because Aramis Ramirez has been struggling with a bum knee, and Alex Gonzalez was somehow even less productive.  Betancourt’s a survivor. What does Yuni have going for him (obviously not baseball skills like fielding and getting on base)?  When it was revealed in spring training that Betancourt was coming back for a sequel with the Brewers, Doug Melvin had this to say: “[T]he guy does good things. There are a lot of things we look at. He’s versatile, has good, strong hands; good strength. He’s good in the clubhouse and is a good teammate.” Is being a good teammate enough given Yuni’s historically poor WAR?  I did some googling to find evidence that the Royals or Mariners said anything about Betancourt’s positive clubhouse influence.  Sure enough, when Kansas City brought him back after in the 2011 season, general manager Dayton Moore said, “He brings a right-handed bat with some power and is a guy we know fits in well in the clubhouse.”  What do you know? On the other hand, at the end of his tenure in Seattle, Yuni was benched due to lack of effort.  One of his teammates at the time said, “You can't play a guy who doesn't work hard on a team where everyone else busts their ass.”  So apparently Yuni the good teammate only started coming around in the last four years or so. Hopefully, Brewers fans will one day hear the fabulous details of Betancourt’s endearing clubhouse antics.  Until then, this much can be said in Yuni’s defense – for a guy with a negative WAR, at least he’s not as expensive as Josh Hamilton.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Panthers coach replaces break-in victims’ Christmas presents

Cardinals Bruce Arians benches Logan Thomas on Christmas Day

Richard Sherman: Marshawn Lynch having MVP season

Curt Schilling tweeted advice to Johnny Manziel

Aaron Rodgers buys TVs for Packers teammates

Harbaugh smiled when asked about Michigan's bday tweet

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Jackie Robinson West Little League accused of cheating

Police: Fire that burned down McClain's home 'suspicious'

Furniture store will refund purchases if OSU wins title

What each NFC team in the hunt should ask for from Santa

Is SI ashamed to mention Jameis Winston on its cover?

Kobe Bryant disappointed Lakers didn't get Rajon Rondo

Q&A with Rich Eisen; TNF, DirecTV and living in LA

Is the NFL playoff system heading south?

WATCH: Quincy Acy ejected for throwing punch at John Wall

Billy Beane did not want to trade Josh Donaldson

Peyton Manning plans to be back with Broncos next year

WATCH: Blazers announcer botches Damian Lillard call

WATCH: P.K. Subban disguises himself, surprises kids for Xmas

Baseball cards: a fan's love for the ultimate stocking stuffer

Packers game is a career defining moment for Stafford

A look inside Jason Grilli's contract with the Braves

10 Week 17 NFL matchups that will impact the playoffs

WATCH: Bahamas Bowl ends on insane Hail Mary play

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!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

Q&A with Rich Eisen; TNF, DirecTV and living in LA

Dan Le Batard sums up Miami's relationship with LeBron

Is the NFL playoff system heading south?

WATCH: Announcer botches call

Police: McClain fire 'suspicious'

10 Week 17 NFL matchups that will impact the playoffs

Bahamas Bowl ends on crazy Hail Mary

49ers OT Davis takes shot at coordinator

Will FIFA ever care to change?

Top storyline for each Week 17 game

40 great Christmas-related sports names

Nick Mangold and dealing with feelings as a sports fan

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.