Currently Historic: Farewell, Bobby Abreu

Last week, we had some excellent comments. One, in particular, I’m just going to quote and we’ll start tracking these next week. So, here we go, hats off to Paul G. who gave us all this wonderfulness:

Here’s a few oddball stats you can track:

There is Top 20 action in the career records. Jason Giambi is currently 12th with 175, three behind Andres Galarraga. Alex Rodriguez just moved up to #15 all-time to tie Kid Elberfeld, but that achievement also broke his hand so I wouldn’t congratulate him on that accomplishment else he break his other hand on your anatomy. Derek Jeter sits at 17th with 162 and could potentially pass both A-Rod and Kid this year. Next up for A-Rod would be Carlos Delgado with 172. To get into the Top 10 would take 183 to tie Jake Beckley.

Out of the Top 20 is Chase Utley with 141 in 26th place. He would need to get up to 154 to reach the Top 20 and I doubt he could get hit that many times and not go on the DL again.

Quite a few players have “earned” HBP 100 this year or are close to doing so.

Jamie Moyer and Jamey Wright are just outside of the Top 20 career. Moyer is tied with Silver King for 21st place with 146. Jamey Wright sits in 23rd with 145. Bert Cunningham and Adonis Terry are tied at 19th with 148. Moyer plunked two batters this year before his release; Wright has hit three so far.

There is also a selection of brand names that hit #100 this year.

AJ Burnett has 127 to his name and needs 6 more really wide ones to tie John Harkins at #50 career. No, I had never heard of John Harkins either.

Alex Rodriguez is two away from 100 career SF. The record is Eddie Murray with 128. Chipper Jones is at 96, a few others active in the low 90s.

Albert Pujols is at 262 career Intentional Walks, third all-time behind Hank Aaron (293) and Barry Bonds (688). I seriously doubt he could get to #2 this year, but he has finally found his swing. Todd Helton needs 3 more to reach 187 and tie Harold Baines at #20 all-time.

Derek Jeter and Paul Konerko are knocking on the Top 20 door for career GIDP. Tony Perez holds that spot at 268. Jeter has 261, Konerko 258.

Thanks, very much, Mr. G. I’ll keep on top of the relevant numbers starting right now.

I want to start with Bobby Abreu.

Last week, Bobby Abreu got his walking papers. This new broke after I had finished the column, so I updated it, but I didn’t do a full write up.

Bobby Abreu has 286 home runs. He has 565 doubles. He has 398 stolen bases. Bobby Abreu got on base nearly 40 percent of the time. That’s pretty impressive. He led the league in doubles once. He led the league in triples once. That’s it.

And that, somewhat obviously is the rub on Abreu. He’s the classic “good at everything” player. Who just never did anything that quite set the imagination on fire. Which is a shame. Because Bobby Abreu was a really, really excellent ballplayer for a long time. He has a pretty decent Hall of Fame case. If he shows back up on some team or other. I’ll gladly go back to tracking his exploits.

Adam Dunn keeps on keepin’ on. Though his TTO pace is still slowing (he didn’t even homer last week and still has four to go to get to 400). He is now 31 strikeouts away from 2000. That should happen by about the end of the month. He is currently ending his plate appearances in a homer, strikeout, or walk 58 percent of the time and is on pace to finish with 400 even. He is also on pace to finish the year with 236 strikeouts. Those would both be records.

He really needs to pick it up. If we’re lucky, next week, he’ll make an appearance in John Barten’s Awards column with four homers, eight walks, and 10 strikeouts or something. Seriously, though, he has been slowing down his historic pace and another week or two like this will make the attainment of those records a dicey proposition. We’ll be watching with baited breath.

Aroldis Chapman saw his K/9 rate dip just a bit more this week to 16.77. That’s still inhuman and well beyond what anyone has done in a comparable number of innings.

There has started to be some Cy Young talk about Chapman. Which is interesting. His 2.9 WAR does put him in the top ten in the NL, but he’s still well off Johnny Cueto and R.A. Dickey. Does he get extra credit for the high leverage situations? I don’t know. I do know that Chapman is ridiculously good. Interestingly, all of his earned runs come from one seven day period. If you take out that week. Well, let’s just say it’s probably NSFW.

Jim Thome! You’re out for a month! There’s no way you’re breaking Reggie Jackson‘s strikeout record this year. Please come back next year.

The Red Sox, they are teasing us. They hit a bunch of doubles this week and are back on pace for 366, which is within shouting distance of the record. You’re back on the watch, Red Sox, but you’re living on borrowed time.

With regard to ARod, I’m just going to re-post this same passage every week until he comes back, so we don’t forget about him: If Alex Rodriguez gets back on the field (no reason to think he won’t), he’ll pass Andres Galarrage for fourth all-time strike outs, Ty Cobb for seventh all-time in RBI, and Tris Speaker for 11th all-time in runs. Sure bets every one of those.

Derek Jeter is now 15th all-time in runs scored. He needs 15 more to get to 14th all-time. He’s also now seventh all-time in singles with 19 more needed to catch Honus Wagner. There are some things I can probably do better than Honus Wagner could. None of them involves hitting a baseball. He needs 11 hits to get to 13th all time. He could do it with a good week.

R.A. Dickey continues to be second in the strikeout race. As was correctly pointed out in the comments last week, he would be the second knuckleballer to lead the league, but the first to do it by striking out batters at this high of a rate.

Ryan Howard needs nine more homers to get to 300. I still think that’s a pretty sure bet. Nine homers in not quite two months seems like a simple enough thing for Howard.

Jimmy Rollins still needs 10 steals to get to 400. Jose Reyes now needs only three.

Todd Helton is done for the year, and so is our tracking of individuals hitting two-baggers.

The season is getting shorter every day. Just about 50 games left now to see who will manage something historic.

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  1. Mike said...

    Abreu for the Hall…are you nuts!  When above-average DH’s get in, then close the doors and burn it down!

  2. Paul G. said...

    Jason, I am glad you found my comment useful!

    Mike, the only year that Abreu could be classified as a DH is 2011.  He was primarily a right fielder and a fairly good one when he was younger.

    With that said, I won’t be championing Abreu for the Hall, but he is certainly worthy of sticking around the ballot for a few years.  If you look at career WAR, he’s ahead of Jim Rice and Kirby Puckett and just behind Andre Dawson and Dave Winfield.  Of course, there is more to a HOF resume than just career WAR and Bobby does not have anything special to offer in that regard, plus being better than Jim Rice is not exactly a ringing endorsement….

  3. Iorg Garth said...

    Abreu deserves some votes, maybe hang around at 40% for a while, but in the end I don’t see him as a HOFer.  It will work against him that he peaked young – he had his three best seasons at 24-26, and all seven of his 5+ win seasons came when he was 30 or under.  Which is of course a perfectly natural career arc, but I think the perpetual decline leads people to remember him just as a good player and forget that he was pretty great 14 years ago.  He could have used one more peak in his 30’s to remind people what a talent he was.  The comparables don’t work in his favor either, they all have something extra to explain why they got in. Puckett was beloved by the public and had his career ended early by injury.  Rice and Dawson were considered to be top players in their times – Rice won an MVP and had 5 other top 5 finishes, Dawson won one and came in 2nd twice, Abreu never had a top 10 finish.  Winfield reached the 3,000 hit mark and nearly 500 HR too which was pretty much automatic induction until a few years ago.

  4. Kenos said...

    I love Abreu.  Over the span of Ichiro’s MLB career, Abreu has been on base only 80-90 times less than Ichiro but has created about 650 less outs.  I know I’m ignoring defense but that also ignores Abreu’s slugging advantage and the three really good years Abreu had immediately prior to that.  I’d support Abreu for the Hall.

  5. joe arthur said...

    Nice article. I agree that Abreu makes an interesting (borderline) candidate, along the lines of Dwight Evans.

    One semantic (or editorial) quibble:
    The simile should be “bated breath” not “baited breath”. I hope. Or maybe there’s a joke about eating worms while watching Adam Dunn which I’m not getting?

  6. bstar said...

    Aroldis Chapman K% – 48.8

    Craig Kimbrel K% – 48.1

    How is Chapman’s number “way beyond” Kimbrel’s?

  7. Paul E said...

    Most seasons with 100 BB 300 TB 25 SB OPS+ 140:

    Bobby Abreu   4
    Barry Bonds   4
    Jeff Bagwell 2
    Chipper Jones 1

    There is a fifth player…I just couldn’t find him. This broad range of skills displayed at such a high level would probably have to be perceived as some evidence of this guy’s rare and extreme talent. I mean, really, Bobby Abreu or Johnny Damon? If you put Damon on the teams Abreu played for, he’d have zero rings, too

  8. Paul E said...

      Thanks for the help…..

    Regarding Abreu, how about he’s one of only two members of the very elite

    900 XBH, 350 SB, 1,450 BB, 129 OPS+ club along with Barry Bonds

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