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Monday, February 01, 2010
Moving Middle Infielders Pt. 2: Melvin Mora Signs With RockiesPosted by Tommy Rancel at 1:15am
The second part of this middle infield tango is Melvin Mora. Spurned by Orlando Cabrera, the Rockies turned their attention to Mora, who agreed to a one-year deal worth just over $1.3 million dollars. Essentially filling the vacated role by Ian Stewart, who now is a full-time starter, Mora will be asked to play second base, short stop, third base and some outfield; a super-utility player.
The role is something Mora is familiar with especially during the early stages of his career. However, for the past six seasons he has almost exclusively held down the hot corner for the Baltimore Orioles. A career .344 wOBA hitter, he saw that number drop all the way down to .302 in 2009. After crushing some numbers, I think Mora is a bounce back candidate and here's the man reason why.
Throughout the course of his career, Mora has shown pretty decent pop from his bat. However, that pop was almost non-existent in 2009. His slugging dipped down to .358 (career low min. 50 PA) while his ISO of 0.98 was also a career worse. Not surprisingly, his HR/FB went from 11% career to just 5.4% in 2009. Add in his new home of Coors Field and we have some potential for a bounce back in power. In a smaller possible regression note, his BABIP of .285 was 25 points lower than his career total.
In his new role, Mora will see likely see less at-bats than the 500 plus he has become accustomed to. Nonetheless, there should still be enough playing time to get him 300+ plate appearances. If the Rockies should have a major injury on the infield, Mora’s stock will rise. However, like Cabrera, Mora is limited to a deeper NL-only league at this point, but is definitely one to watch if his role is increased.
Tommy Rancel is the Editor-In-Chief of DRaysBay as well as a contributor at Beyond the Box Score
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