Monday, March 14, 2011

IRON: Idiot Ruining Overall Numbers

I appreciate the work ethic of Adrian Gonzalez, and I appreciate the fact that this year Gonzalez doesn't want to take any JD days. The argument can probably be made that he had to JD out all offseason while rehabbing, so he doesn't want to JD out any further. But Gonzalez doesn't need to be a hero, here. Therefore, for the good of the team, don't be stubborn. Take some days off over the course of the season.

The longest stretch with very little JD time for the Red Sox is actually earlier in the season, as they are going to only have one day off in between April 26th and June 2nd. Due to rainouts and the fact that they play so many games against other AL East teams, there might be some similar stretches over the course of the season where these guys will be spending a lot of time on their feet and will still need to play at a high level. Granted, first base is not shortstop. It is not center field. It is not catcher. But you get beat up after a while.

I had a friend in college who had a borderline-irrational hatred for Cal Ripken, to the point that he argued that Ripken shouldn't have been a Hall of Famer. However, if you look at some of those overall numbers toward the second half of the streak, and it appeared that Ripken probably should have taken a couple of days off and let Manny Alexander play some time at shortstop. The perennial All-Star was under league average in OPS for three separate seasons during the streak. Some of his traditional numbers looked like .25x/1x/8x, which, while good for most shortstops, fall way short of the .28xs or .30xs with 20-something home runs that fans got used to over there in Baltimore.

The Red Sox - and the player - both deserve better than to accept 75% production from the guy because he's banged up but stubborn. With a bench as good as the Red Sox' (though I don't drink the Jed Lowrie Kool-Aid nearly as fervently as others), it's pigheaded and foolish to play any player on this roster any more than 150 games.

Just please, don't give everyone the same day off.

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