Guest Postin’: IronHorse’s Positively Posada Paean

Gold Medal commenter IronHorse submitted this post, and we thought we’d share it. Hip, hip, Jorge!

Thanks to A-Rod’s MVP-caliber year, the buzz around the Yankee youth-surge, and the perennial heroics of Derek Jeter, Jorge Posada’s unprecedented success as a 35+ year old catcher is getting less attention than it deserves. Look at the offensive numbers and where they rank among all major league catchers:

BA .338 (1st)
HR: 20 (2nd)
OBP: .423 (1st)
SLG: .553 (1st)
OPS: .973 (1st)

No catcher in the modern era has approached these offensive figures past the age of 35 (none has hit 20 HR and batted better than .330). Then consider that he is a switch hitter. As such, he has not only the best BA of any switch-hitting catcher in history (of any age) but has also been remarkably consistent from both sides of the plate:

Batting from the left: .338 BA; .426 OBP; .555 SLG; .981 OPS (in 337 at-bats)
Batting from the right: .336 BA; .415 OBP; .547 SLG; .963 OPS (in 137 at-bats)

And his play behind the plate has not slipped at all. His worst stat is probably his caught stealing percentage (.234 – 8th among AL catchers, just behind Varitek) but those who watch the games know that this has more to do with all the new pitchers who can’t/don’t hold runners plus all the older pitchers who, other than Pettitte, are terrible at holding runners. Posada’s arm is as strong and accurate as ever, and he releases the ball quickly. Despite being the oldest starting catcher in the majors, he has caught more games (129) than anyone other than 24-year-old Russell Martin of the Dodgers.

Finally, the “intangibles”: Posada has guided a record number of pitchers to their first-ever-wins this year – 9 in total: Wright, Chamberlain, Ramirez, Igawa, Hughes, Kennedy, DeSalvo, Rasner, and Clippard. And he is unquestionably among the most respected team leaders. The most outspoken calling out of fellow Yankees by anyone this year was Posada’s comment, after a 7-0 loss to Oakland on June 30, that his teammates were just “going through the motions”. For Posada this is the equivalent of a chair-throwing rage. Since that day, the team is 48-24 – the best record in the majors. Is it all attributable to one guy’s comments? No. But there are no players on the team more respected and listened-to than Jorge. Only Jeter and Mariano bring the credibility he does as a Yankee, and of course Clemens brings some as an all-time great.

An addition from the editor. A couple of months ago we saw Posada on an episode of American Chopper. The Teutel family are big Yankee fans, and it was a lot of fun to watch Grandma Teutel interacting with Jorge. “Oh my God it’s Jorge (pronounced, George-ey) Posada!” she says, and when she’s corrected, “it’s Hor–Hay” by her grandson, she’s just like “whatever,” because she’s so totally in love. [Posada was on the show to pick up a pinstriped bike to be autographed by the team and sold at auction.] Anyway, what was somewhat disturbing about this otherwise heartwarming episode was watching Jorge walk. After a decade behind the plate, he waddles. Anyway, he’s waddling his way toward a ginormous contract, and more power to him.

162 comments… add one
  • Posada’s year has been off the hook. It’s going to put NY in a weird situation this offseason re: his contract status. Are they going to pay him the three years taking him to 38 or 39? Is he going to take the hometown discount to stay? I can’t really imagine any other team getting into serious conversations with him (not for ability, but rather age), so I can’t see him leaving NY.
    Kudos to him for sure. I could not have been more wrong with my prediction this year for him.

    Brad September 18, 2007, 1:15 pm
  • Thanks for accepting the post YF. This is one case where I feel Torre’s management has been good – the last couple years of resting Jorge so that other guys (Flaherty and Randy Johnson; Nieves and Mussina earlier this year) could regularly catch has I think prolonged his career a bit. Having been a catcher, Torre gets the wear and tear of that position much better than he does for bullpen pitchers and also knows that the former is much less replaceable.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 1:25 pm
  • With his two doubles Friday, Posada tied the season record (40) he already shared (from 2002) for doubles from a switch hitting catcher (with Ted Simmons, 1978).

    attackgerbil September 18, 2007, 1:30 pm
  • Our pleasure, IH.

    YF September 18, 2007, 1:39 pm
  • Thanks, IH, much appreciated!

    SF September 18, 2007, 1:43 pm
  • If Posada asks for 4/50, what do Yankee fans suggest Brian Cashman do?

    Brad September 18, 2007, 1:48 pm
  • Jorge’s year has been absolutely STELLAR, and it’s just a shame that it goes overlooked so often. It’s like par for the course this year. Good god, his right/left batting stats are identical.
    I mean, I overlook this ridiculous career year of his all time. He really doesn’t get the credit he’s due. It says something about this crazy year the Yankees are having, where such an amazing season gets overshadowed by A-Rod and Chamberlain/Hughes/Kennedy.
    Definitely one of factors that’s allowed Jorge to continue performing at this level is Jose Molina. Just as Jorge’s season is being overlooked, this midseason pickup by Cashman (along with Betemit) has worked out excellently. Molina is a huge upgrade over Wil Nieves, in terms of experience and not being a complete offensive liability. When, or if, the Yankees face the Angels in the playoffs, I’m thinking his knowledge of their pitchers is definitely going to help.

    doug YF September 18, 2007, 1:56 pm
  • Brad – it’s tough and tough. But then again, seeing how there really isn’t a catcher on the market, you would imagine a 80% Posada would be good enough. Though I really have no idea how to think about it. This never happened before, so nothing to really go on..

    Lar September 18, 2007, 2:15 pm
  • Good question Brad, I don’t really even care about the dollar figure, that’s a tough call to make with an aging catcher, even one that is having the year Posada’s having, how many years can any organization risk giving to him?

    LocklandSF September 18, 2007, 2:16 pm
  • “If Posada asks for 4/50, what do Yankee fans suggest Brian Cashman do?”
    First off I don’t think Posada asks for that. I think it’s in the 3/36 or so range. I think 3 years is the MAX you can go and even then there needs to be an understanding that in years 2 and 3 you might very well be playing the role that Girardi did to you. If the only way the deal gets done is 4 years, then you have to do it. There is nothing out there and the few decent catchers that are out there are all older like Jorge.

    John - YF (Trisk) September 18, 2007, 2:17 pm
  • Great piece by the way IH, forgot to add that.
    FA Catchers:
    Brad Ausmus HOU
    Paul Bako BAL
    Michael Barrett SD
    Gary Bennett * STL
    Ramon Castro NYM
    Wiki Gonzalez WAS
    Jason Kendall CHC
    Jason LaRue KC
    Paul Lo Duca NYM
    Damian Miller MIL
    Chad Moeller LAD
    Jose Molina NYY
    Josh Paul TB
    Jorge Posada NYY
    Ivan Rodriguez * DET
    Yorvit Torrealba COL
    Javier Valentin * CIN
    *=Club Option

    John - YF (Trisk) September 18, 2007, 2:19 pm
  • Pudge sure would look good sharing time with Tek next year.

    Brad September 18, 2007, 2:23 pm
  • “FA Catchers:”
    I wonder if any of those guys can catch a knuckleball.

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 2:23 pm
  • My comment made little sense, I apologize, I am all worked up over losing Jorge.
    Ideally 3 years.
    If that can’t be done, 4 years with club options on year 4 with a nice sum as the buyout.

    John - YF (Trisk) September 18, 2007, 2:24 pm
  • I would think Jorge has a couple more good years behind the plate, after which he’ll be an excellent DH (Giambi will be gone eventually, right?). The guy can flat-out rake. I’d give him 4 years if he wanted it.

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 2:29 pm
  • Jorge deserves to retire as a Yankee. It’d just be plain wrong to think otherwise.
    Hey guys, I think Varitek would be 100% willing to ride the bench 4 every 5 games for such an obviously superior catcher like Posada. He’s the captain, he’d be willing to take one for the team, am I right guys??

    doug YF September 18, 2007, 2:34 pm
  • “Hey guys, I think Varitek…”
    You mean like how Captain Jetes was willing to move for the obviously superior SS?

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 2:38 pm
  • If you look at Posada’s annual contracts, there’s a pretty good indication of where he’s going to be going:
    2002 New York Yankees $7,000,000
    2003 New York Yankees $8,000,000
    2004 New York Yankees $9,000,000
    2005 New York Yankees $11,000,000
    2006 New York Yankees $12,000,000
    3 yearsl @ $42 with a $16 million option? Anyone?

    YF September 18, 2007, 2:43 pm
  • I’d definitely re-sign him and start working him into the 1B/DH picture, as well.

    Mark (YF) September 18, 2007, 2:50 pm
  • Wow, now that’s fun with numbers! 3 years at 42 seems fair. The problem the Yankees have to worry about is that he stops being a decent catcher and needs to DH. With Damon and Matsui, they could have three of those in 2009.
    And Molina is also a FA. Between Jorge and him, they could be dropping 16 million on the position next year.

    Pete September 18, 2007, 2:52 pm
  • I’m going to agree, YF. I think NY will ask for three, at probably 48. If I’m Jorge, I have to wonder why guys like Clemens and others can demand that kind of money from NY while they hit the cheap on the master link at contract time. He Goes for 15 or so per, and he should get it.
    I think he caves on the fourth year in lieu of the money.

    Brad September 18, 2007, 2:52 pm
  • Speaking of Posada, the SportsCenter commercial with him, Ortiz, Wally, and a Yankee hat doesn’t play nearly as much as it should.

    yankeemonkey September 18, 2007, 3:15 pm
  • *play=run

    yankeemonkey September 18, 2007, 3:15 pm
  • @Tyrel: Just look at that monstrous ice hockey “C” on Varitek’s chest. Of course he’d do what’s best for the team: using his leadership skills to captain his team while serving as backup catcher. I think a selfless guy like Varitek can make these kinds of sacrifices for his team. Am I right, or am I right?

    doug YF September 18, 2007, 3:19 pm
  • WALLY!

    Lar September 18, 2007, 3:27 pm
  • The scary part of Posada would be his possible fall off the proverbial cliff, as catchers often do.
    Yes, Doug. Even in your futile attempt to throw flames at Varitek’s personality, or his choice to wear the “c”, I’m nearly certain that he’s enough man to admit when it’s time to platoon.

    Anonymous September 18, 2007, 3:27 pm
  • Stepping back from Jorge’s ’07 season, his career numbers make a strong argument for the HoF.
    There are 16 catchers in the HoF. Many of Posada’s career offensive numbers right now rank him around the middle of them:
    BA: .277 (9th)
    OBP: .380 (4th)
    SLG: .480 (5th)
    HR: 218 (7th)
    R: 732 (8th)
    H: 1323 (12th)
    For reference to familia names who played much longer, all-time Yankee catcher Yogi Berra, who played 19 seasons to Jorge’s 13 (so far):
    BA: .285 (6th)
    OBP: .348 (8th)
    SLG: .482 (4th)
    HR: 358 (3rd)
    R: 2150 (2nd)
    H: 2150 (2nd)
    RS all-time great catcher Carlton Fisk (24 seasons!!!!):
    BA: .269 (10th)
    OBP: .341 (10th)
    SLG: 457 (8th)
    HR: 376 (2nd)
    R: 1276 (1st)
    H: 2356 (1st)
    OK, enough Jorge love for the time being. Back to work for me!!!!

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 3:33 pm
  • I think Posada is a lock for NY next year. Of the three big FAs NY will have to resign this fall, he’s the one I’m most sure will return. Followed closely by Mo.
    After a year like this one, I can’t imagine NY will be offering anything less than terrific money. Jorge’s a career Yankee, he wants to keep playing in pinstripes, and the Yanks want his to stay in NY. I’m sure he’ll get a nice pay boost, too, probably in the $13-15 mil/year range, probably 3 years.
    More importantly for NY, though, is finding a back-up catcher to start learning the trade from Jorge. I think NY needs to get a young kid in here in a year or two, to give him plenty of time to learn from the Master.

    KurticusMaximus- YF September 18, 2007, 3:39 pm
  • Doug – It’s not like Tek is blocking anyone else, nor are any of the FA options very appealing. I’d much rather have Tek playing 4/5 than have Belli/Cash playing more than 1/5 a week, even though I’d imagine Tek would play better if he could rest more.
    I’m sure that if the Sox were to develop or acquire the “Catcher Of The Future”, Tek would slide nicely into the mentor/2nd bench coach role.
    I’m doing my best to avoid saying snarky about DJ. And not for lack of material.

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 4:10 pm
  • should read “saying SOMETHING snarky”

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 4:11 pm
  • The Jeter jab is admittedly funny…though of course, jeter didn’t have to do anything in order for the Yankees to land A-Rod. It was just assumed he was the leader of the team and holds that position. He didn’t need to…ummmm….wear it on his chest (sorry…couldn’t resist).

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 4:13 pm
  • Re: Pudsada
    Yea, stellar. Never seen anything like it, especially in a contract year. I am shocked ;)

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 4:46 pm
  • BR, precisely. you haven’t seen a season like this out of a catcher his age, be it a contract year or otherwise. none of us has.

    Yankee Fan In Boston September 18, 2007, 4:54 pm
  • Jorge’s outstanding year is often chalked up to his being in the final year of his contract. This certainly may have something to do with it. But those who don’t follow the Yankees are mostly unaware of another critical factor that Posada himself has noted. Since his son’s birth seven years ago, Jorge has been hugely pre-occupied with the boy’s critical health condition – a rare brain disease that has required multiple life-threatening operations. The most recent operation earlier this year was successful and appears finally to have cleared his son for the foreseeable future. Posada has commented that it is the first time in 7 years that he has been able to focus only on baseball while playing.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 4:57 pm
  • I think Jorge’s HoF credentials will really be hurt by his lack of MVP votes. He finished 3rd in 2003, and hasn’t garnered a vote in any other year.
    Sportswriters simply don’t love the catcher that can hit as much as they did in the Berra/Campy era (Pudge’s fluke MVP win aside).
    Jorge should get a top ten finish this year at least, which would help as would getting his 5th and 6th ring. I could see a strong argument for having Jorge as high as 3rd this year. His VORP is 4th in the AL, behind only Arod, Ordonez and Ortiz. And I thik the lack of RBI will cost Ortiz votes.
    And if the Tigers fade down the stretch then there is an outside shot at a 1-2 Yankee finish in the MVP voting.
    Even if his career fell off the Dale Muurphy cliff, he has built a HoF resume. And this is despite not becoming a full time player until age 26. And he shared considerable time even then, appearing in only 233 games his first two “full” seasons.
    Hip hip Jorge.

    Michael T September 18, 2007, 5:01 pm
  • The son issue is one of the reasons Drew has gotten a slight pass from me this year; he clearly had more important things to think about for a while there.
    Also, how old was Javy Lopez when he contracted his way into Baltimore?

    Brad September 18, 2007, 5:05 pm
  • There is no real race for MVP this’s A-Rods to lose over the next few weeks.
    But, Jorge should get a vote or two.

    Anonymous September 18, 2007, 5:07 pm
  • I have. Tek was not as old but he was just as determined to have his last contract be his best.
    That was a stellar, year for him too. Actually, if one were to compile ALL the best years for ALL players I bet 90% of those years coincidentally came one year prior to free agency.
    Of course, Pudsada is different. He’s a Yank.

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 5:08 pm
  • Good points Mr. T…what’s your prediction for tonight’s game by the way? “Paaiiiiinn?” Sorry, bad sports movie reference. I really did like the comment.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 5:08 pm
  • IH, Doug, and anyone else who has a problem with or likes to joke about Tek wearing a C on his sports uniform, it is time that you come to terms with the fact that there is a website where you can sign up for e-updates on when your Captain’s perfume becomes available in a black bottle.
    I mean, in terms of pure comedic value, this is an absolute truism –
    The letter “C” < "...a blend of chilled grapefruit, clean oak moss and spice... housed in a sleek blue bottle with a silver cap..." Agreed?

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 5:12 pm
  • Clownboy: Please reference the statistically-similar years of any catcher after the age of 35, contract year or not. After all, there are many who reached contract years after that age so given your comment I am sure you can find at least one example.
    Or, to use the Tek example you already gave, please give us the statistically similar year he had, contract year or not. The fact that he hasn’t had a single season batting above .300 nor a single season with an OBP above .400 might make it a bit tough for you though. But it would give the rest of us a respite from your yippy-dog-like commentary.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 5:13 pm
  • Tyrel: touche. Laughing quite hard at that. Maybe we can buy Jason Varitek a bottle of “driven”. Just draw a “C” on the front so everyone knows it’s his.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 5:15 pm
  • Oops. Post above should have said adding his 4th and 5th ring. Jorge only had a cup of coffee in 1996.
    The Yankees back-up catcher that year was World Series hero and honorary True Yankee (TM) Jim Leyritz.

    Michael T September 18, 2007, 5:15 pm
  • Great, BRAW broke the website.

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 5:15 pm
  • As a RS fan, I could think of more than a few things worse than Cash$man dolling out another big contract to a player on the downside of his career. After all, that’s worked great for him so far!
    Cashman; a RS fan’s best hope

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 5:16 pm
  • IH, lol.

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 5:16 pm
  • P.S. You know half the Sox have already bought a lifelong supply of “driven” in the hopes that DJ’s clutchness might rub off on them. It must be the chilled grapefruit.
    Except of course Ortiz, who probably has his own scent for clutch hitting. Not sure I want to know what it is though. “Pile-driven?”

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 5:17 pm
  • BRAW you did it again.

    Close your friggin captions, will ya?

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 5:19 pm
  • Clownboy: Are you still here? I thought we gave you a homework assignment.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 5:19 pm
  • Bow down before me, Yank scum!

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 5:20 pm
  • Well, clearly nothing to add here. :)
    Night everyone.

    Brad September 18, 2007, 5:22 pm
  • Sorry, I thought a bug was indentified. Did not know any open caption would do the same thing.

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 5:22 pm
  • IH, did you see the Crasnick piece on Tulowitzki?
    “But he’s still a rookie — technically, anyway — and the veteran Rockies are happy to put him in his place. They teased him enough about his Derek Jeter hero worship that Tulowitzki showed up one day with a bottle of Jeter’s “Driven” cologne as a gag. A few Rockies even dabbed it on during a series against the Yankees in June.”

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 5:23 pm
  • IH;
    “Please reference the statistically-similar years of any catcher after the age of 35”
    I have no clue. All I know is Theo would not sign him for more than 2 next year while cash$boy will probably sign him for 10.

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 5:27 pm
  • No Tyrel, I hadn’t. Thanks. Very very funny. I’d be surprised if other players in the league don’t get on Jeter all the time about it.
    By the way, Jeter got his 2,337th hit last night, becoming fourth on the all-time hit list for Yankees behind Gehrig, Ruth, and Mantle. Even if you hate the Yankees, and I know you do if you’re an SF, how cool must that be to get into that company with several more years still left in your career? driven…

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 5:32 pm
  • Clownboy! Clownboy! You’re fading!!!
    Great. He’s back.
    Rational argument: a equals b which equals c so a must equal c.
    Clownboy argument: mama, i wet myself (sniffle-put-sniffle).

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 5:35 pm
  • IH – I was surprised that on that list, no one had 3000 hits as a Yanks. You would think with all those HoFers.
    But Jeter, knock on wood, will probably be the first. And it’ll be (hopefully) with one team his whole career. Kind of cool.

    Lar September 18, 2007, 5:39 pm
  • According to this article, Jorge wants $36 mil for three years. That’s reasonable in my view. Get it done, Cashman!

    Nick-YF September 18, 2007, 5:40 pm
  • Lar: totally agree. Gehrig would have done it for sure, but alas. Just finished his biography by the way. Unbelievably stand=up guy and crushing way to end the career of a guy who was on his way to break all kinds of hitting records.
    But yes, barring serious injury, Jeter will blow past 3,000.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 5:41 pm
  • Wow, 3/36. I don’t know if it’s a discount, but it surely isn’t too expensive.. (I know I know, I’m used to Yankee numbers..) Seriously, get it done!

    Lar September 18, 2007, 5:41 pm
  • Well, that’s about the best I can do for you, IH. I’ve already stated how I believe handling pitchers and defensive ability are the most important qualities for a catcher, so if you need to being up offensive stats (in lieu of abilities he doesn’t have) all I can do is smirk, really.
    Yea, I’d rather have a rested Tek, if you need to know.

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 5:46 pm
  • “I think it’s in the 3/36 or so range.”
    Posted by: John – YF (Trisk) | Tuesday, September 18, 2007 at 02:17 PM
    Now if I could only get my psychic powers to tell me the Lottery numbers.

    John - YF (Trisk) September 18, 2007, 5:48 pm
  • The Posada-HOF argument above is an interesting one. Personally, I don’t envy the voters, because there are a number of borderline guys up for consideration in the next 5-10 years, i.e., Raines, Bagwell, Thome, Smoltz, Hoffman. Right now, I’d say Posada is borderline, mostly because I think of him as behind Piazza and Pudge in his generation of catchers.
    But the rings, the potential longevity, and the actual improvement at his age will all really help his argument.

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 5:49 pm
  • Clownboy: “I’d rather have a rested Tek”
    Even the most delusional SF fan would not choose this option over Jorge Posada.
    You’re right clownboy, that is the best you can do. But nevertheless, by all means keep the gems coming. They continue to provide comic relief for SF and YF alike.
    Incidentally, it is wonderful that your defense-first catcher has to be taken out for a major offensive liability replacement every time Tim Wakefield pitches.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 5:52 pm
  • Tyrel: agreed on the HoF question – borderline. It is a stretch to think Posada can continue to perform at the level he is at in ’07, but if he puts up 3 more years of numbers that keep him in the range of those 16 HoF’ers in all those offensive categories noted above, plus the rings he’ll have, it would be hard to deny him. And I agree that Piazza and Pudge probably get in before him, though I can’t think of any other current catchers who would.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 5:55 pm
  • “Incidentally, it is wonderful that your defense-first catcher has to be taken out for a major offensive liability replacement every time Tim Wakefield pitches.”
    I think there’s a misperception here – it’s not that Tek can’t catch the knuckleball, it’s that the physical abuse he’d go through catching Wakefield would wreak havoc on his body. Diving, blocking, the mental strain – altogether, that’s some exhausting shit.
    At least that’s how I see it.

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 5:58 pm
  • Has Pudsada ever made Arod eat his glove?
    Thought not. Case closed, I’ll take Tek in a heartbeat.

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 5:59 pm
  • As Ted Lilly says in the NL: Disengage.

    Nick-YF September 18, 2007, 6:01 pm
  • Tyrel: since you’re the only sane one in this 3-way conoversation, a serious question about Varitek. Some time ago I argued to Sox fans that he is the RS I most like to see at the plate with the game on the line. Some agreed, some didn’t. Then he had some big clutch hits earlier this month, and then seems to have gone ice cold again.
    In order of who YOU want to see up with the game on the line, assuming Ortiz and Manny are your first two and that Lowell and Youkilis are somewhere right after…ok, this is getting too complicated. Who are the Sox regulars you LEAST like seeing up with the game on the line? Does Varitek make that list or not? I just don’t see him as either that great of a hitter or clutch performer, but I also don’t watch the Sox enough to know.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 6:02 pm
  • Right-o, Tyrel. Every catcher should have a dedicated off day.

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 6:04 pm
  • I had always read that V-Tek had real difficulty catching the knuckler. There have been key moments in the post-season when Varitek had to sit a whole game. You don’t just do that because of the wear and tear on the body. You have the whole off-season to heal.

    Nick-YF September 18, 2007, 6:06 pm
  • Engaging is so much more fun nick. It’s like baiting a mouse. and a dumb one at that.
    Here’s a game. Which of the following are actual clownboy remarks form the past week alone:
    1. “Roger Clemens won’t start tomorrow”
    2. “I don’t care that my catcher sucks – he pushed a guy once! I win I win I win.” Stomp stomp stomp. “Mama – I need to poopoo now. Whaaaaaaaa!!!”
    3. “Red Sox are gonna sweep this weekend!”
    5. “Manny is resting for the Yankees series – he’ll play for sure”
    6. “Thanks mama. I had to poop myself”
    Answer: all of the above.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 6:07 pm
  • IH, for shame! You didn’t put the best one on the list:
    “That’s like saying Ted Lilly is the 3rd best pitcher in the NL because he pitches in the NL”

    Nick-YF September 18, 2007, 6:09 pm
  • Tyrel: I think Nick has a point there. I don’t think there are many cathers who actually CAN catch Wakefield’s knuckleball, wear and tear or not. And I think playoff games would indicate which of the reasons it really is.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 6:09 pm
  • Nick: I’m ashamed. Thanks for correcting me. I think sometimes it’s like sitting at the feet of Gandhi you know? There are so many gems coming that you sometimes forget a few. I’ll pay homage to my Ted Lilly shrine at home later tonight.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 6:10 pm
  • Honestly, I guess it’s a toss-up between Tek, Coco, and Drew. None of them exactly gives me a warm-tingly feeling.
    That being said, Tek has had his fair share of clutch moments in the past, including a few this season. And I’m sure he’s gt a few left up his sleeve.
    BRAW, apparently you are unaware that Tek’s manhandling of Arod actually counts against him because he did not first stop the game and remve his athletic supporter. Or something.

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 6:12 pm
  • Catchers are the most underrepresented position in the HoF. Only 11 have been inducted who played in the 20th century.
    And the list of HoF catchers since 1950?:
    Bench, Fisk, Berra, Carter, and Campanella. That’s it.
    Here are the “worst” catchers in the HoF, based on cumulative and rate stats:
    Ray Schalk 1912-29: OPS+ 83/1345 hits/11 HR/594 RBI
    Rick Ferrell 1929-47 OPS+ 95/1692/28/734
    Mickey Cochrane 1925-37: 128/1652/119/832
    And Jorge is 125 OPS+/1323/218/856
    That is a no-brainer hall of famer in my book. Barring years of end-career futility, he is going to push those counting stats up past Mickey Conchrane while still producing OPS well above league average.

    Michael T September 18, 2007, 6:13 pm
  • Oh, IH! You’re just jealous because I called your CY candidate a dog in sheeps clothing, and he proved it.

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 6:14 pm
  • Tyrel, I would assume that many SFs agree with your ranking and whle I know Varitek is supposed to be a tough guy and everything, and catcher is a leader position, I think it’s a little strange to have the captain of a team be among the bottom three of those you want up.
    On the Yankee side, of the regulars, I feel pretty good across the board on clutch hitting, though Cano is the one who will sometimes flash the worst at-bats at key moments. His relatevely very low BA with the bases loaded is one indicator of this.
    But do you get what I mean re: captaincy? It is not a knock on the whole team – I mean Ortiz is as clutch as anyone ever has been. It’s more a question of why it is Varitek who is captain.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 6:15 pm
  • Clownboy, of course! An 18-game-winner must suck!
    Honk honk!
    Keep it coming!
    Run along now clownboy, your ball-nose and floppy shoes are distracting the rest of us here.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 6:17 pm
  • BRAWWW: As always, you’re “THAT GUY.”
    Interestingly enough, I found this in the dictionary:
    1. brightly colored and showy
    “girls decked out in brave new dresses”
    “brave banners flying”
    2. gay
    “a dress a bit too gay for her years”
    “birds with gay plumage
    Thanks for showing off your gay plumage, Braw. Thanks for being “that guy.”

    doug YF September 18, 2007, 6:18 pm
  • “key moments in the post-season when Varitek”
    Catching a knuckler takes practice. The last thing I want to see is Tek coming in to catch Wake with the season on the line after not having caught a knuckler for a year or two or three. Come to think of it, didn’t he do just that in 2003?
    Of course, I could be wrong, maybe he just doesn’t have the feel for the knuckler.

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 6:18 pm
  • Tek is Captain of Boston because he is:
    a. Catcher
    b. “Gritty”
    c. Shaved head
    d. lifetime Sox (sort of) and
    e. White
    Simple as that in that town.

    Michael T September 18, 2007, 6:18 pm
  • Jeez, HOF, huh. Has Pudsada ever even started an Allstar game? Christ, the guy has one good year in hopes the Cash$boy will overpay again, and all of a sudden he’s an HOF’er. This thread is eerily similar to the Wanger thread last week.

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 6:19 pm
  • Mr T, bringing the heat! I love it! Good stats. When I was doing the Jorge-homage I was surprised to find only 16 catchers total in the Hall. And I was surprised to see just how long Fisk played for. I knew he was around forever, but 24 years in that position is pretty incredible. I’m surprised he could walk after that.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 6:20 pm
  • “Come to think of it, didn’t he do just that in 2003?”
    UGGH! It was 2004, and thanks for reminding me. Actually, it was one of the oddest displays of managerial passivity ever. Varitek caught Wake in the extra innings of (I think it was this one) the Dave Roberts stolen base game. He was clearly having problems handling the knuckler and yet we didn’t run at all on him. Very bad managing!

    Nick-YF September 18, 2007, 6:22 pm
  • Clownboy: see 3.33pm post and them Mr. T’s 6:13 post.
    Then insert your opinion here and flush.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 6:22 pm
  • Pudsada stats:
    Bases empty – .374
    Runners on – .304
    RISP – .282
    RISP with 2 outs – .222
    Just what the Yanks need, another Arod.

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 6:23 pm
  • Doesn’t Pud also have a reputation of good pitchers not wanting him back there?
    Careful YF’s, no good pitchers this year!

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 6:26 pm
  • Tyrel: He did come in to catch Wakefield but I think it was in the 2004 ALCS. And he had 3 passed balls in the same inning if I remember correctly. As I recall, the Yankees had a runner on 1st for two of them and failed to even attempt a stolen base, which was my biggest problem with Torre in those days – his first year post-Zimmer was his least aggressive in terms of managing baserunners. I remember at the time thinking that was one of a few main turning points in that series.
    And yeah, it may just be a practice thing – catching Wakefield for the first time in a postseason game wouldn’t be the best idea.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 6:27 pm
  • Nick – sorry, didn’t see your post – ditto on all you said.
    Clownboy: You’re right, the Yankees suffer from lack of clutch hitters. By the way, did you watch any baseball last weekend?

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 6:29 pm
  • Gee, ya think?
    Did the fact that Mirabelli is back there give it away?

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 6:30 pm
  • Jeter is the second best clutch performer I have ever seen.

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 6:31 pm
  • “It’s more a question of why it is Varitek who is captain.”
    First, he’s the epitome of the blue collar ethos that the Sox and RSN love. Comes in and does his job, plays hard doesn’t talk much to the press, etc.
    Second, because he’s wicked smaht and he works wicked hard on game preparation, and he is apparently God’s gift to pitchers.
    Third, because pitching and defense win, and Tek is smack dab in the middle of both.
    Fourth, because he once smacked your guy in the face, and that was like wicked emotional and stuff.
    Fifth, because he’s got a C on his shirt. Duh.

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 6:32 pm
  • Mr. T made a not so subtle remark on Varitek’s credentials for captain. Any rational SFs (read: clownboys need not apply) disagree with any/all of them?
    The more I think abot it the more I do wonder why he would be the captain. Boston has both better defensive players and MUCH better and more clutch offensive players.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 6:32 pm
  • Clownboy is grasping at straws with his cherry picking, but I’ll bite because its like shooting fish in a barrel.
    “Mr Clutch” Big Papi this Year:
    Late & Close: .268 BA/.373 OBP/.408 SLG
    Margin greater than 4 runs: .328/.436/.641
    Talk about piling on the stats when it doesn’t matter.

    Michael T September 18, 2007, 6:32 pm
  • “First, he’s the epitome of the blue collar ethos that the Sox and RSN love. Comes in and does his job, plays hard doesn’t talk much to the press, etc.
    Second, because he’s wicked smaht and he works wicked hard on game preparation,”
    Like I said, he White.

    Anonymous September 18, 2007, 6:33 pm
  • //Tyrel: “I guess it’s a toss-up between Tek, Coco and Drew”//
    Tyrel, I would have to put Cora, Hinske and Cash above all three of them. But that’s just me ;-)
    And jesus christ, why is BRaw back?

    Atheose September 18, 2007, 6:33 pm
  • BRAW can you explain, im not sure what these numbers have to do with Posada’s. Do you suffer from massive dyslexia that means you lack the ability to compare numbers?
    Bases empty – .298
    Runners on – .325
    RISP – .325
    RISP with 2 outs – .311
    I really cant believe anyone would still be ignorant enough to question Arod’s ability to hit in any situation.

    Sam-YF September 18, 2007, 6:35 pm
  • Tyrel – sorry, cross posted there. I get all you say, but I can’t think of a Yankee captain whose performance in the clutch was not a major part of their suitability for the title (Gehrig, Munson, Guidry, Mattingly, Jeter – even Nettles).
    Anyway, this is not pile-on-Varitek-hour – you’ve got yours and we’ve got ours. And Clownboy apparently thinks Varitek is better than Jorge, so everything else pales in comparison.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 6:36 pm
  • “Cora, Hinske and Cash”
    I’d swear he asked about regulars. If I’m wrong, then totally, Cora, Hinske, Cash are the worst, absolutely.

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 6:37 pm
  • Jorge Posada staretd the All Star game twice, in 2002 and 2003.
    But not this year.
    Shows how idiotic using tha as an argument is.

    Michael T September 18, 2007, 6:38 pm
  • Atheose! Thank God. More rational Sox fans.
    Atheose, I asked about regular Sox starters you don’t (and I do) want to see up in the clutch. Hinske and Cor don’t qualify, do they? Is Varitek on that list for you? If so, how do you square that with the captaincy title? I’m no trying to be a d*^k (at leat not to you) – just seriously questioning why it would be he and not, for example, David Ortiz?

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 6:39 pm
  • “I’ll bite because its like shooting fish in a barrel.”
    lol Mr. T. Exactly my sentiment all the time with Clownboy. I would try to rise above, but it is so fun to get him to chase his tail instead.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 6:41 pm
  • “If so, how do you square that with the captaincy title?”
    Last I checked offense wasn’t the whole game. I mean to statheads it is, to the players themselves…not so much. Tek wasn’t made captain because the Red Sox wanted to make the fans happy, he was made captain largely for sentimental reasons. It’s really none of our concern anyway.

    Josh SF (D1) September 18, 2007, 6:42 pm
  • Papi stats:
    Bases empty – .294
    Runners on – .347
    RISP – .338
    RISP with 2 outs – .304
    Manny stats:
    Bases empty – .300
    Runners on – .285
    RISP – .273
    RISP with 2 outs – .321
    Not that we should be comparing offensive stats of a catcher, whose best trait should be handling a pitching staff and serving up glove sandwich to self-entitled pricks.
    I asked before. Doesn’t Pud have a reputation of quality pitchers not wanting him back there? why is that, if true?

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 6:43 pm
  • …just ignore…

    Josh SF (D1) September 18, 2007, 6:46 pm
  • Josh: It’s not about stats. I asked who SFs least want to see at the plate with the game on the line. At least one included Varitek in his bottom three.
    But I do get the point I guess you are making, which is that teammates look up to him regardless of anything else. OK, I guess.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 6:46 pm
  • Michael T – Somehow comparing Posada’s stats with those of a dead-baller and a couple of guys who played when catcher was dead-ball position doesn’t put him over the top for me. Sort of like how looking at stats for Johnny Mize, George Kelly, Orlando Cepeda, and Jim Bottomley doesn’t convince me that Fred McGriff, Andres Galarraga and Rafael Palmiero are HOFs either.
    Though a couple more years like this and he’s a shoe in.

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 6:48 pm
  • Posada has no problem catching great pitchers, he has been doing so for years. The only pitcher i know who had a personal catcher recently was Randy Johnson. Given his personality that means very little in my book. Calling it a reputation is more than a stretch, its just not true. I believe he has caught more games of some guy named Roger Clemens than anyone else. Not that facts really matter to you…

    Sam-YF September 18, 2007, 6:53 pm
  • Actually Josh, for once RAW might have a point, which is why I address him by his “proper” name here. Randy Johnson made a stink about not feeling Posada was fully enough focused on him (implying that he was more concerned with his offense). But I never heard any other of the big-time pitchers that have thrown to Posada (including guys who are not exactly wallflowers on such matters and have since let the Yankees, like David Wells and Kevin Brown) say anything like that. (I have to remind myself that Brown was – once – a big-time pitcher). Clemens, Pettitte, Rivera, Cone, etc. have all worked well with him and several of the young guys this year have gone out of their way to say how he has helped them out on and off the field. So I don’t think that is such an issue.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 6:54 pm
  • Oh my bad, I didn’t see the “regulars” part. Varitek is definitely on that list for me lately.
    But I believe that has little to do with the C on his chest. The preparation he does with regards to the opposing lineup is invaluable–most people agree that Varitek is the best pitcher’s-catcher. The fact that he’s caught 3 no hitters–Nomo, Lowe and Buchholz–is proof of that.
    It’s also his work ethic. One thing I LOVE about Varitek is that after striking out he jogs back to the dugout. He doesn’t hang his head, he doesn’t argue (like Youk does lately), he just takes it and goes on his way. I’m sick of pampered batters whining when they get rung up on a close pitch.

    Atheose September 18, 2007, 6:55 pm
  • The fact that Varitek has caught three no-hitters means absolutely nothing as far as his skill as pitchers’ catcher.

    Sam-YF September 18, 2007, 6:57 pm
  • @Braw-braw: “Pudsada?”
    Man, I don’t even get how that could be taken in a condescending or insulting sense. Why can’t you actually make some sense with your nicknames? Is that one even based on reality?
    Try again, you ass.

    doug YF September 18, 2007, 6:58 pm
  • Though Posada did catch a perfect game.. ;)

    Lar September 18, 2007, 6:59 pm
  • Sam, do you think Buchholz made all the decisions in the no-hitter two weeks ago? He didn’t shake him off once. That’s due to Varitek’s pre-game studying of opposing hitters that goes above-and-beyond what most catchers do.

    Atheose September 18, 2007, 6:59 pm
  • was he drunk too?

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 7:00 pm
  • Tyrel SF said:
    “Michael T – Somehow comparing Posada’s stats with those of a dead-baller and a couple of guys who played when catcher was dead-ball position doesn’t put him over the top for me”
    Hence the inclusion of OPS+. You are familiar with the concept aren’t you? (If you aren’t, it is adjutsed for park, league and era.)
    Not to mention, the “dead ball era” was 1900-1920. Two of the three guys I listed played in the era of some pretty powerful offence. You know, little know guys like Ruth and Gehrig.

    Michael T September 18, 2007, 7:00 pm
  • “It’s not about stats. I asked who SFs least want to see at the plate with the game on the line.”
    Umm…that is about stats. You asked that question then asked why someone we don’t want up with the game on the line should be Captain. Clutch hitting is about offensive ability, which is measured in stats…his being named Captain is largely a whole bunch of other stuff I can’t really quantify–tenure in the organization, work with the pitching staff, and work in the community, to name a few. Most of it doesn’t concern me; the part about the pitching staff is probably quantifiable, so to me, that’s the big thing here. I guess he’s a good influence on younger players, too…and it’s not like he’s Alex Cora with the bat…
    At least, those are my two cents. And FWIW, I was captain of my high school lacrosse team despite being out of shape and probably only the fourth best offensive player. Heh…

    Josh SF (D1) September 18, 2007, 7:00 pm
  • “I don’t think I ever saw a pitcher shake off one of his signs. They had too much respect for him.”
    Tony C on Elston Howard, who I think of as a good comparison for Tek.
    And the 7:00 drunk reference was in re the perfect game…

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 7:02 pm
  • Johnson, for sure. Also, I wonder how Moose feels about him, as he is always caught by another, and it’s not as if Moose throws a knuckler or anything. If there was not a problem there I doubt Moose would have his own catcher. I thought there were others too.
    But whatever, no pitcher has ever said that about Tek, nor should they because he goes the extra mile in game preparation. Of course he may have been a little slack in that dept in ’04 while pushing for a new contract :)
    Good luck, Pud. Green rules (just ask Arod)!

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 7:03 pm
  • Atheose im not saying that he doesnt work hard. I dont agree that he goes above and beyond what most Catchers do. Many work very hard at this type of thing. What I am saying is that a no-hitter isnt the result of the cather’s calling a game. Does that fact that Moose pitched a one hitter against the sox, make Posada a little less good at calling a game and being a “pitchers catcher” Where was the amazing game calling for Clay when he gave up 8H and 3ER in 6 IP in his first start?

    Sam-YF September 18, 2007, 7:03 pm
  • Tyrel, you completely reworded my quote. I was speaking specifically about Buchholz two Saturdays ago.
    And as for pitchers that HAVE shaken off Tek… Schilling might have a no-no under his belt if he had listened to Tek.
    But seriously, does anyone think there’s a better pitcher’s catcher out there right now? Just look at how the pitching staff’s ERA ballooned last year after he hit the DL.

    Atheose September 18, 2007, 7:05 pm
  • And where was Scarlet C’s great game-calling ability while the enormously talented Josh Beckett was racking up an ERA over 5 last year?

    Michael T September 18, 2007, 7:05 pm
  • Josh, my point was that I don’t even know if his “RISP w/ 2 outs” and other clutch-relevant stats are better relative to his average stats. It was very much about the fans’ gut-feel about who they like to see there because they feel like he won’t screw up, he’ll at least work a long at-bat, he’ll freaking step into one to get on, etc. etc. It is not about stats – we could just look them up and determine how he rates relative to others. Right now, so many SFs don’t want Drew up in the clutch even though my perception is that, in the past few week anyway, he has done better than lots of others, including Varitek, in those spots. Anyway – whatever – let’s all go watch our respective games…

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 7:06 pm
  • I think there could be many we have no idea about because we dont watch them play every day and manage staffs. What other good pitchers cathers can you name? Im not sure i can name any because its basically impossible to keep track of all catchers.

    Sam-YF September 18, 2007, 7:08 pm
  • Sam, you’re right–it takes two to pitch a no-no. But Clay’s control in his first game against the Angels was attrocious–he couldn’t hit a house with his curveball that day.
    But a Rookie pitcher throwing a no-hitter in his 2nd major league start is quite a statistical anomoly. You have to admit that a a lot of credit is due to Varitek.
    By the way, I thought Tek’s pre-game above-and-beyond preparation was well known, like Schilling’s meticulous notes. Am I the only one who thinks this?

    Atheose September 18, 2007, 7:09 pm
  • Clownboy is back!!!!!
    So Mussina is “always caught by another”.
    Please support with stats clownboy.
    Mussina has pitched for NY for seven years – 200 + games. How many as Posada caught? Over 80%.
    Clownboy, Mussina is pitchign tonight. Since he is “always caught by another” can you let me know who is pitching? Oops! It’s Posada.
    More gems from clownboy!!!!
    Keep it coming!!!!

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 7:09 pm
  • What I am saying is that a no-hitter isnt the result of the cather’s calling a game
    Yep. Some raw rookie, never, ever having seen major league batters, absolutely does not rely on his experienced catcher for pitch selection.
    Thanks for that comment. I now feel 100x smarter then I did 5 minutes ago.

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 7:11 pm
  • //And where was Scarlet C’s great game-calling ability while the enormously talented Josh Beckett was racking up an ERA over 5 last year?//
    Josh Beckett shook off every sign, because at the time he wanted to blow people away with his fastball. You know how Beckett was ;-)
    By the way, lead-off hit by Ellsbury.

    Atheose September 18, 2007, 7:11 pm
  • I’m still confused about how that relates to him being Captain…I didn’t just make that connection in the conversation myself, did I?
    “And where was Scarlet C’s great game-calling ability while the enormously talented Josh Beckett was racking up an ERA over 5 last year?”
    Umm…actually I think Beckett himself said he shook off Tek way too often last season, opting to throw his fastball…all the time.
    I’m (mostly) with you on the idea that the 3 no-no’s doesn’t do a ton to make Tek look good…small sample and all that. But I don’t really understand how you can disregard what…uh…every pitcher who’s ever thrown to Varitek has ever said about him with regard to his work ethic. I mean that wasn’t a myth that came up after Tek’s precipitous decline; he’s been known for that for a long, long time.
    And by the way, a catcher’s game-calling ability is actually something scouts look at when he comes up through the minors. Or at least, I’ve read criticisms/praise leveled at minor-league catchers in scouting rags before…

    Josh SF (D1) September 18, 2007, 7:11 pm
  • “The way he breaks down each hitter and the way that we go over them before the game, it’s unlike anything that I have ever seen before, how much pride and passion he takes in everything that he does.”
    That’s what Buchholz said about Varitek after the no-hitter. Here’s the full article:

    Atheose September 18, 2007, 7:12 pm
  • Clownboy: “I now feel 100x smarter then I did 5 minutes ago”
    100 X 0.00 IQ is still = 0.00.
    Thanks for walking into yet another one.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 7:12 pm
  • Apparently it took awhile for Moose to get sick of him concentrating too much on his contract ;)
    All I know is da Moose don’t want da Pud back there anymore.

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 7:14 pm
  • Rational SFs: The game-prep thing certainly is a great quality for a catcher, and if it gives an entire pitching staff mroe confidence I think it translates into a lot on the field. That and the fact that you say the teammates look up to him regardless of what he does or doesn’t do at the plate make sense enough to me.
    I can still make fun of the “C” though. You’ve got the cologne to throw at us in return…

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 7:16 pm
  • BostonRAW, you bring this site down. Go flame your anti-Yankee blabber on a different site.

    Atheose September 18, 2007, 7:16 pm
  • Ironhorse, feel free to make fun of the C. But like you said, we’re free to make fun of Jeter’s perfume, or unwillingness to let ARod play SS.

    Atheose September 18, 2007, 7:17 pm
  • Talking about Tek, Pud, etc., I did see Joba the future fat pig shaking off more than a few Pud signs last week. Does Joba know better? Is he an arrogant kid? or did the other Yank pitchers recommend he not listen to Pud?
    Just wondering..

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 7:18 pm
  • Clownboy is like one of those characters at the bar in the original star wars. Lots of noise making absolutely no sense, but good for laughs. Please don’t drive him away from here Atheose. We need him, like a circus needs a…….a……..what is taht word again…………CLOWNBOY!!!

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 7:23 pm
  • MT, why you hating?
    So you’re arguing that because Posada’s OPS+ is better than two guys who played when catcher wasn’t really considered an offensive position, one of whom spent half his career in the dead-ball era, he’s a guaranted HOF. It’s all good, dude. Tek’s OPS+ beats Schalk and Ferrell too, so I guess I better book that hotel room in Coopertown for 2015, right?
    And while we’re at it, ever compare Edgar Renteria and Phil Rizzuto? John Valentin and Pee Wee Reese? Anyone and Luis Aparicio?

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 7:29 pm
  • Tyrel: My stats against Aparicio look pretty poor. So there.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 7:30 pm
  • I wouldn’t be so sure, IH. He was pretty damned bad hitter. Whiz with the glove, though, or so I hear.

    Tyrel SF September 18, 2007, 7:36 pm
  • Touche Tyrel. Again.

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 7:39 pm
  • I think Pud and Wanger should become enshrined on the same day. Oh no, Joba too. Yea, Joba’s a shoo-in with his miniscule ERA (just look at the historical stats). Everything is coming together perfectly. Maybe they all will have Mienkiekikiewitz say a few words in their behalf.

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 7:39 pm
  • “Mienkiekikiewitz” HAHHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAAHA.
    My one-year old daughter loves your humor clownboy. Keep it coming!
    Do you do birthday parties? Do you make those balloon animals? What do you charge?

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 7:42 pm
  • If I were to start a thread about Nomah being a HOF’er I would expect to be similarly giggled at.
    The fact is, what may be the most singularly looked at comparison for judging HOF material is how they stacked up against players from the own era. Someone said Posada has started all of 2 Allstar games, which I’ll believe. But isn’t that enough it itself to disregard the guy as a serious candidate?
    Sorry, IH, but I ain’t buying your theory, not that you haven’t tried your heart out in support of it.
    Game time. Later gators.

    BostonRAW September 18, 2007, 7:49 pm
  • “Later gaors”
    Okie-dokie clownboy!!!
    After a while crocodile!
    Honk honk whiz whiz!
    Keep it coming clownboy!!!!!

    IronHorse (yf) September 18, 2007, 7:52 pm
  • Tyrel said
    “MT, why you hating?
    So you’re arguing that because Posada’s OPS+ is better than two guys who played when catcher wasn’t really considered an offensive position, one of whom spent half his career in the dead-ball era, he’s a guaranted HOF. It’s all good, dude. Tek’s OPS+ beats Schalk and Ferrell too, so I guess I better book that hotel room in Coopertown for 2015, right?
    And while we’re at it, ever compare Edgar Renteria and Phil Rizzuto? John Valentin and Pee Wee Reese? Anyone and Luis Aparicio?”
    This is so specious, I shouldn’t even respond. I didnt simply cherry pick some random players from a different era. I’ll paint this by numbers for you, since you seem slow to catching on:
    1. There are very few catchers in the HoF
    2. That is probably because catches haven’t produced much offense
    3. Jorge Posada is a catcher, and a great offensive player (career OPS+ 125 over 10 full seasons and still going strong)
    4. Against his peers from his generation, Jorge Posada matches up; the last HoF catcher Gary Carter, played 20 years ago and only Pudge and Piazza have sustained better careers than Jorge since then (and pudge only by virute counting stats from more seasons with a career OPS+ 112 and declining)
    5. So offense from catchers is still pretty rare with only 3 “great” hitters the past 20 years playing catcher for any duration (and Pudge’s offensive value is debatable)
    Your comparison of Renteria to Aparicio and Rizutto holds no water. Renteria doesn’t stand up as even a league average offensive player (OPS+ 98 in 12 seasons) in the era where SS has become an offensive position. Arod, Ripken, Jeter, Nomar, Tejada, Barry Larkin and Carlos Guillen off the top of my head are SS in the past 20 years who were much better than average with the bat (not to mention the new generation of guys like Tulowitski and Hanley Ramirez). So, if Rentawreck doen’t even cut it against his own era it doesn’t matter how he stacks up against playes from generations ago.
    Does your Sox homerism make this that difficult to comprehend? Sorry for the “hatin'” but your attacks on me are intellectually dishonest.

    Michael T September 19, 2007, 1:52 am
  • And one more thing. Your lame argument of Tek’s OPS+ being better than a couple catchers also misses the point completely. Tek has produced league average offense for 9-1/2 seasons, and appears to have hit the cliff. Thurman Munson was well above league average for 10. And won an MVP and ROY. And 3 gold gloves. And was a 7-time All Star. And had his career cut short. Thurm doesn’t even get a sniff at HoF voting time.
    The other leg of an HoF case is “are you the best at your position who is’t in”. Tek ain’t even close to Thurman dude.

    Michael T September 19, 2007, 2:01 am
  • jeez, you guys went off the deep end on this one.

    Brad September 19, 2007, 9:33 am
  • Brad, I don’t know. Notwithstanding the rancor and tone of the debate, I think the substantive argument over whether JP is HoF-worthy is pretty substantive. When I posted the comment raising the question of whether he should indeed be considered this way, I wasn’t all that convinced myself, but I do find Mr. T’s arguments pretty compelling and well-based.

    IronHorse (yf) September 19, 2007, 9:36 am
  • IronHorse-
    Jorge’s great production makes him almost a shoo-in, in my opinion. If he even puts up 3 more years of average offensive production he will be near 300 HRs, 1500+ hits and over 1000 RBI. As your original post noted, that would make his counting stats in the top 10 of all catchers to play the game (inc. Pudge and Piazza). And his rate stats will be even better. In addition, based on this year and a couple others (2003 for sure), he was the best at his position. Coupled with his aura as a “winner”, I think the voters will find room for another catcher, particulrly one who is arguably among the top 15 or so ever to play the game.

    Michael T September 19, 2007, 12:34 pm
  • Mr. T: I hope you’re right. Good argument for him, for sure. Though I’m not sure his rate stats are likely to improve or even stay even. If he eventually does sart to feel his age, those would presumably go down, even while his counting stats continue climbing.

    IronHorse (yf) September 19, 2007, 12:54 pm
  • I said was that Jorge is at present borderline, that he’s the 3rd best catcher of his generation, and that with a few more solid seasons he can get in. MT, you said
    “[He] is a no-brainer hall of famer in my book. Barring years of end-career futility, he is going to push those counting stats up past Mickey Conchrane while still producing OPS well above league average.”
    You sort of said the same thing, that if he doesn’t fall off an offensive bridge in the next couple years, he can get in. But then you jumped the shark and compared him to guys who are statistically irrelevant: the three worst offensive catchers in the HOF, the most recent of whom retired 70 years ago. Do you know anything about Ray Schalk? Rick Ferrell? I know I don’t. Maybe Schalk is in the HOF because he invented knee pads. Maybe Ferrell was the first guy to master picking guys off first after the pitch. The only thing I do know about those guys is that they’re not in the HOF for their career batting statistics.
    “And one more thing. Your lame argument of Tek’s OPS+ being better than a couple catchers also misses the point completely.”
    No, that was your argument, you applied it to Jorge, I applied it to Tek.
    “Your comparison of Renteria to Aparicio and Rizutto holds no water.”
    Clearly, or I should’ve hoped it was clear, Rent-a-wreck, John Valentin, “anyone” and Tek were chosen for comedic value and to show why it’s useless to compare offensive stats from this generation to guys from the past. There’s no point.
    “Thurman Munson”
    Huh? Who’s talking about Munson?
    For HOF purposes, it is much more productive to compare guys to their own generation, because the HOF elects what, 3 people a year? Off the top of my head, here’s who be retiring in the next three or so years – Pedro, Smoltz, Glavine, Maddux, Hoffman, Thomas, Thome, ManRam(?), Piazza, Pudge, Sosa, Chipper(?), Griffey, Rivera (?), Sheffield, Bonds. There’s sixteen contemporaries of Jorge’s that I think have a better shot, who will be eligible around the same time as he is, including two guys better than him at his own position. THAT is who he’s competing against. Not Ray Schalk, not Gary Carter, but Pedro, Bonds, and Piazza.
    One last thing, here’s Jorge’s rank among all active hitters in a variety of offensive stats.
    Avg – 88th
    Obp – 21st
    Slg – 51st
    OPS – 33rd
    Runs – 63rd
    HRs – 51st
    RBI – 43rd
    OPS+ – 29th
    That’s very good, but that’s not shoe-in HOF stuff. He’s not even top ten 20 in anything, nevermind top ten or whatever top number is generally thought of as the top of the game. In fact, this is the first season where Jorge can say he’s having the best season of all the catches in baseball.
    Jorge is a very good player. A borderline HOF who at age 35 is having the best season of his career. None of the stats you’ve thrown out nor none of the names you’ve called me convinces me otherwise.

    Tyrel SF September 19, 2007, 1:16 pm
  • Tyrel: In your list of soon to be retired and destined for Cooperstown, you forgot the best of all: Clemens. Freudian slip or are you assuming he continues pitchng partial seasons until he is making his first appearance each season at the age of 50+ in early September in order to be in tune by the playoffs?
    The fact that the HoF elects around 3/year and that it does not necessarily look to elect people from given positions (i.e. we really need a catcher this year) lends weight to your argument that Jorge might not get in. It also helps explain why there are so few HoF catchers. I mean, how are guys in these positions expected to also perform well enough offensively for long enough to break the top ten in those offensive categories, “live-ball” era or not.

    IronHorse (yf) September 19, 2007, 1:25 pm
  • IH – The Roger omission was deliberate, because I figured he’s done after this year. The guys I threw out there have at least another season in them (I think). I left out Biggio too.
    As for catchers and career stats, Piazza is top 20 in 6/8 categories I threw out there, top ten in 2.

    Tyrel SF September 19, 2007, 1:37 pm
  • Tyrel-
    Ironhorse nailed it, if the sportswriters think like you (i.e. no love for catchers) then Jorge probably won’t make the HoF. You site his offensive stats in the context of the entire league, including players at positions on the opposite end of the defensive spectrum (1B/DH, LF, RF, etc.). My argument was that he has been a great offensive player, for a prtty long time, with high peak value DESPITE being a catcher.
    At one time, that was recognized by voters which is why catchers like Ferrell and Schalk made the HoF. (And also why Yogi, Campy and Elston Howard won multiple MVPS despite other sluggers putting up gaudier stats). They didn’t invent kneepads, they merely had long careers as catchers while putting up respectable offense. Jorge has done that and more (again barring a a dramatic drop-off inthe next two years.
    I find it interesting that Thome is on your list despite the fact that he was rarely among the top 5 players at his own position during his career. 1b/Dh types and catchers have got to be held to different offensive standards.
    I guess I have been looking from the perspective of there “shold” be more catchers in the HoF, and saying “if not Posada, then who”. This is why I was included coments on Thurman Munson, who is in the tier of catcher candidates (along with Elston Howard). There is a lot of room between Cochrane/Ferrell/Schalk and Johnny Bench. 16 HoFer-s out of the thousands that have played!

    Michael T September 19, 2007, 1:50 pm
  • I hear you MT. HOF voters don’t strike me as particularly deep thinkers – aren’t they essentially the same guys who vote for Cy Young awards and MVPs?
    Posada has a good shot – and the rings will certainly help. But I could could see him being lumped somewhere between Ted Simmons (career 119 OPS+) and Joe Torre (129) – excellent players who don’t have enough shiny numbers to put them over the top. Of course, a few more seasons like this one…
    I threw out Thome because I figure he’ll retire with 550-600 HRs, which is a pretty shiny number. But I didn’t really think too hard about that list, beyond who’ll be retiring in the next few years.

    Tyrel SF September 19, 2007, 2:17 pm
  • Ted Simmons. Nice call. I kne I was forgetting someone that should be given consideration. He had very good rate stats and played long enough to pile up good counting stats (as a catcher). Torre suffers as a tweener. Only about half his ABs ove the career were as a catcher and his offense fell quite short as a corner infielder.
    But I will grant you this. Posada is going to have a tough time getting attentionuntil Simmons does. Although one argument is Posada’s favor would be a higher peak value, with what should be two top 5 MVP finishes.
    Iv’e been swayed upon reflection, particularly if the argument is “will he” vs. “should he”.
    And you are right about the writer analytical abilities. But I think they do a better job on thhe HoF than MVP voting. Most of the real mistakes of inclusion have been made by the veterans committee. If anything, the writers have made more mistakes of exclusion (catchers, Goose Gossage, Ron Santo come to mind) and I ma a hawk for having very tough HoF standards.

    Michael T September 19, 2007, 5:04 pm
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