Thursday, May 04, 2006

Jeter Most Overrated?

Well, duh. It was annoying to hear the PTI and ATH people complaining about Derek Jeter being voted the most overrated player in baseball among his peers in Sports Illustrated. Is this such a revelation? Jeter is a damn good player, but he unquestionably is a bigger superstar than merited by his play because he is a handsome guy that plays for the Yankees and has played a lot in the postseason. If he had spent his career playing for the Kansas City Royals, can you imagine how much different his aura and name would be? Compare Jeter’s stats to those of one of the guys on the most underrated list: Bobby Abreu. Both are excellent defenders. Jeter played his first full season two years before Abreu, but they have very similar career lines:

Abreu: 4816 AB, 876 R, 1458 H, 194 HR, 796 RBI, 246 SB, .303 BA, .412 OBP, .512 SLG, .924 OPS

Jeter: 6266 AB, 1180 R, 1972 H, 172 HR, 783 RBI, 217 SB, .315 BA, .387 OBP, .463 SLG, .850 OPS

Amazingly similar, yet Abreu isn’t in Jeter’s league as far as rep and notoriety. So yeah Jeter’s overrated. What’s surprising isn’t that someone would make this claim, but why anyone would fight it with gusto.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

You and everyone else MUST BE INSANSE. Jeter is not the best stat man in the game...that is for sure. But he is one of the most clutch performers of this generation. He is a winner and that goes beyond stats. Compare his and ARod's stats and there is no comparison, but who would you rather have up in the 9th inning of a playoff game. For you to compare him and Abreau is ridiculous. Jeter is an icon, because of play under pressure in the post season, and yes, because he plays in NY. But please get your facts straight if you are going to call him overrated. He is an overall performer, not just a stat man.

6:02 AM  
Blogger Dave Ling & Franchise said...

Who would I rather have in the 9th inning of a playoff game?

- David Ortiz
- Manny Ramirez
- A-Rod
- Scott Podsednik (just kidding, but ask Lidge if he's dangerous in the clutch)
- Paul Konerko
- Miguel Tejada

And that's just the AL, I'd also take from the NL

- Albert Pujols

Anonymous needs to get over his Derek Jeter man-crush and realize he's wicked over-rated.

8:21 AM  
Blogger Todd Martin said...

"Clutch" is mostly a fraud concept. Why is Jeter considered clutch? Because he's been on great teams year after year, so he's had tons of opportunities to make plays in front of the largest audiences. The irony of the Jeter is clutch argument is he is actually a WORSE hitter in the postseason than he is in the regular season:

Reg: .315 BA, .387 OBP, .463 SLG
Pos: .307 BA, .379 OBP, .463 SLG

The irony of bringing up A-Rod is he's a better postseason hitter than Jeter:

.305 BA, .393 OBP, .534 SLG

I can see the "winner" argument if you're a QB in football or if you're team's biggest star in basketball. There the stats are very often deceptive. But baseball is fundamentally a team game. Anyone can win a World Series if they are surrounded by the right guys. Stats are very rarely if ever empty, unlike an NBA shooting guard racking up 25 points on .375 shooting for a team that loses 3/4 of its games.

A-Rod has always been a fabulous player, but he didn't make the postseason in Texas because he didn't have enough talent around him, and Jeter has always made the playoffs because the Yankees surround him with stars.

Jeter is of course a very good player, but you make my argument for me when you say there is no comparison between him and Abreu because he is "an icon," and because he plays in NY. That's *exactly* my point. This isn't an examination of his talent; this is idolatry. And it's precisely why Jeter is easily one of the most overrated players in baseball.

8:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dave Ling: Are you serious? Maybe Ortiz, but what has Manny ever done. What the hell has A-Rod ever done in the clutch? Konerko???? Tejada????

let's see. Go watch the 2000 World Series and see what Jeter did against the Mets. Look up his playoff stats. He comes through with a big hit or HR so many times. How many players would make that play against Oakland in the 2001 playoffs?

Seriously. That list you put down shows you don't know the difference between a great player in the clutch and a great player during the season with stats. I'm not saying Jeter is the best or most clutch, but he's one of the best of this generation. The fact you put ARod on your list shows you know nothing

8:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Clutch is coming through in a pressure situation. Yeah...look at ARod's stats in the 2004 Boston series. He was great the first 3 games when the Yanks went up 3-0. He didn't do anything though when the Yankees NEEDED him in games 6 and 7. He had a horrible series last year against LAA. I like ARod, but he has yet to have that defining moment in the playoffs where he gets a big hit to drive in 2 runs and put his team on top by a run. Yes, baseball is a team game, but it is the sport where you are mostly doing your job as an individual. You are batting by yourself, fielding and pitching by yourself. Nobody is setting a pick for you or blocking for you. There are no zone defenses, blitzes, coverage schemes, etc...

You want to look at Jeter's stats and say he isn't one of the best stat men in the game...fine. He's not. He's a career 310-315 hitter, 4 rings, 1 WS MVP and was a big part in those years. Don't say he was part of a team...he was a huge and intregal cog in that machine. Yes, because he plays in NY, his stature is magnified. Overrated by stats...sure. Overrated overall player: no way. He does too many of the little things and is a winner and makes great plays and plays when his team needs him to come through which is clutch

8:49 AM  
Anonymous Dave S. said...

I am a Yankee fan, and anyone who even compares A-Rod to Jeter in terms of clutch hitting is insane. A-Rod is absolutely terrible when an important game is on the line; I don't care what his regular- or post-season stats say. Jeter's career numbers aren't that spectacular, and I do agree that Abreu is underrated, but the fact is that Jeter comes through when it matters. Yes, he obviously has more opportunities to come through in the clutch because he plays for the Yankees, but I don't see why that should be held against him. Ortiz has had plenty of opportunites to come up huge, and he's done it; how come noobdy is criticizing him for playing for a stacked team that always makes the playoffs? It's a ridiculous criticism. The fact is that Jeter is in a situation where he's playing on a big stage, and he comes through when it matters time and time again. I would think a baseball fan would appreciate that, even if you do hate the Yankees.

10:13 AM  
Anonymous Phil said...

There are no clutch players.

Yes, it's that simple, Baseball Prospectus has done loads of research on this and has repeatedly proven that there is very little year to year correlation between clutch performances. But if there is such a thing as clutch, Jeter certainly isn't it. Todd's presented some enlightening statistics on Jeter's postseason production and how similar it is to his regular season production. This is utterly unsurprising. Given a large enough sample size, every player's postseason statistics would revert to the mean, or their regular season statistics. When you see a player "choking" or coming through in the clutch, whta you're really seeing is statistical noise coming from a lack of sample size.
Still not convinced? James Click of Baseball Prospectus did amazing work last year trying to measure clutch. If you're a BP subscriber, the article is here:
Anyway, the gist is that, in 2005, Jeter was one of the least clutch players in all of baseball, costing the Yankees 2.27 wins. Click determines how many wins a player would be expected to poduce given their raw stats and then compares that to their actual expected wins added. Since each event in baseball has a measurable affect on win expectancy, this exercise can be done. Does this mean Jeter's a choker? No, it's just what can happen over one season.
Finally, saying Jeter, on anyone else in baseball, transcends the stats is bunk. The players are absolutely right, Jeter is roundly overrated.

10:37 AM  
Blogger Dave Ling & Franchise said...

Hey man, I like my list you said who would I want at the plate in a pressure/clutch situation. I'm telling you I'd rather play the percentages with my list then go to bat with Jeter (2000 was 6 years ago).

Your man-crush on anything Yankees is your blinding weakness, good baseball does exist outside of New York.

Jeter will prove to me that he's a winner either when he leave NY (which he never will) and continues to win OR when the Yanks don't have a $200M payroll (which they won't in his career) and he can lead them through the playoffs. Until then he's just another passenger on a team full of guys who are playing below their capabilities because there's too much talent to rely on around each other.

You want a good hitter from New York, Scott Brosius was pretty good for the Yankees world series runs then Jeter in 1998-2000.

10:46 AM  
Blogger Dave Ling & Franchise said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

10:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OMG....are you kidding me with that stat. Obviosly you have never played baseball in your life. The difference is in the 7th game of the WS, I can go 4-4 with 3 RBI in my first 4 ABs, but when I come up in the 8th or 9th and I need to get a hit, SAC fly, HR, whatever, I strike out, ground out or pop up, I didn't come through WHEN IT MATTERED. Jeter has done this his WHOLE CAREER. 1996, 2000 and 2005. There is a big difference doing it in NY on the big stage than doing it in Florida with no fan pressure or media. Jeter has succeeded. Ask any NY writer or radio guy and they'll say Jeter comes through in the clutch big time. Just like Reggie. ARod hasn't the past 2 years. Ortiz has. Abreau is really good, but what clutch AB's has he had??? Pujois is great, but he sucked in the 2004 World Series...; Tejada had a great run his last year for the A's and was extremely clutch.

Like I said...if you would rather have ARod up than Jeter in the 9th of a big game, you aren't a fan and don't know what's going on.

You seem to think I'm saying Jeter is the only clutch player in baseball. I'm not saying that. The argument is whether Jeter is overrated. He does things that go beyond stats and always comes through in the clutch. Again...what does a 200M payroll have to do when he's up, by himself, in late innings and making plays or that play against Oak in 2001. Nothing. Scott Brosius was damn good and he ruined your argument. Would you rather have him or ARod up in the 9th in a big game??? ARod's career post season stats are inflated from Seattle and games that NY was in control of (2004 against Boston).

10:58 AM  

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