Monday, March 5, 2012

Maybin

What to think of Cameron Maybin's defensive performance in 2011?

According to the baseball statistical site FanGraphs.com, Maybin's UZR ranked third among all major league centerfielders (for what it's worth, this blog isn't a fan of UZR). Dave Pinto's numbers aren't as kind, showing Maybin 12th in MLB. What do you think? Here's what I saw: 1) Maybin's balltracking was better than average and extremely good east-to-west; 2) Maybin over-threw too many cutoff men, not surprising for a player in his first full season in the majors; 3) Like many centerfielders, Maybin doesn't seem to fully trust his north-south reads and plays deep against singles hitters, but since those are common glitches, they're not all that worriesome; 4) Maybin glides like a top-flight NFL receiver while pursuing balls in the gaps. I enjoyed watching him run down flyballs. I expect that Maybin, 24, will win a Gold Glove before his five-year contract expires, although it's no small feat for a center fielder/base-stealer to stay healthy.

2 comments:

  1. Tom,

    I tend to like Pinto's numbers as well, but any defensive metric which says Alex Rios is an above average center fielder is well.....let's just saying leaving something to be desired.

    I thought it was interesting that you chose to only use stats here when you typically quote a scout or two. I'm sure any scout you find would tell you that Maybin is a gold glove caliber CF

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  2. Mark, The disparity in some defensive stats gives me pause, too. As for any scout rubber-stamping CM as a GG, um, not there yet. Although I haven't polled them, one who saw a lot of the NL West last year likes CM but preferred Fowler (who plays his home games in a far more demanding ballpark for a defender). I hope to talk to more scouts soon. Best, TK

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