This is not the shortstop you are looking for…
If ever there was a time that I wanted the Jedi mind trick to work on a general manager, this is it.
For some reason, Walt Jocketty wants to re-sign Orlando Cabrera for 2011. The good news is, it won’t be at the ridiculous $4 level that the option calls for. He wants the shortstop to return at a lower price. But based on his performance in 2010, particularly in the postseason, I don’t want him back.
Orlando Cabrera is not a good baseball player. Look, I understand that when you’re playing on the same team as Joey Votto, Scott Rolen, Brandon Phillips, and Jay Bruce, it’s tough to look like a good ballplayer by comparison. But even when you remove your teammates and look just at the stats, it’s bad.
Baseball-reference.com today looked at candidates for the 2010 Least Valuable Player. And when posting the list of those with the worst OPS+, Cabrera comes in at #8. Sure, his .263 average doesn’t look terrible, but he only has a 78 OPS+! And that’s not the eighth worst on the Reds…that’s the eighth worst IN THE MAJOR LEAGUES.
Looking at WAR, Cabrera has a pathetic 0.4. 0.4. Shortstops, in this day and age, should never have a 0.4 WAR. Out of fairness to Cabrera, he’s not the worst shortstop on the list. That dishonor goes to Cesar Izturis, who posted a -0.4. So at least OCab came out in the positive. But still. 0.4.
Surely there is a free agent shortstop that could better fill the role for the Reds. No I don’t expect Jocketty to go after Jeter (wouldn’t that be awesome), but there has to be someone that won’t boot the ball in the first inning of the most critical game of the year when you’re down by 2 games in a best-of-five playoff series.
In any case, Orlando Cabrera is not the shortstop you are looking for.