View Full Version : One man's roster analysis (long)

06-18-2002, 08:40 AM
Ok, I've decided (with a lack of a game to discuss/rant about with yesterday's off day) that I'd go through all the players that have been on the sox roster for any length of time this season and state (in my, hopefully, relatively neutral opinion) whether they've played above, at, or below expectations this year.

Beginning with those that seem to be performing below expecattions:

Todd Ritchie: I never thought that he'd necessarily come in here and be an outstanding pitcher, his carrer statistics didn't back up that sort of assumption. I did think he'd be solid though. For a while, he was, but he's lost it of late. We've seen him pitch decently before, can he get back to that? Maybe, let's hope.

Keith Foulke: Though with a few more outings like he had sunday against the Cubs, he may get himself out of this category. Blame his closing struggles on whatever you want, but the bottom line is he wasn't getting the job done. Jerry did the right thing here, let's hope Keith can continue to iron things out.

Sandy Alomar: Granted, I didn't have huge expectations for him for this season to begin with, but he's still had a below average year. His defensive abilities seem to dwindle a bit further each season. Offensively, at quick glance, his .284 AVG is nice, but 2 walks and a .298 OBP?!? Holy crap.

Royce Clayton: I know, I know, he was just as bad the first half of last year, but I thought sure in spring training that there was no way he could be that horrible at the plate two years in a row...guess I was wrong. He has been consistent on defense, which is nice, but a sub-.200 AVG is still pathetic.

Carlos Lee: Yes, he had a great game sunday, and if he can continue with his hot bat, he may just turn it around. Still, his season to date at the dish has been reminiscient of the second half of 2001, and that's just not good enough for someone with his talent. I give him a lot of credit for his progress in the field, he seems to have graduated from the "glove on the head" club (daver's creation?)

Jeff Liefer: Hasn't had a ton of playing time, which may be an excuse, but sunday's game was his season in a nutshell, lots of K's and overall unproductive

Frank Thomas: Is coming off an injury, and may not be back at full strength. Has shown definite signs (pre-interleague) that he was starting to find a groove. Has been my favorite sox player for eons. I sure hope he can keep turning it around. But, still, so far this year, he's been playing below his expected level, at least in my eyes.

Now those performing at about the expected level:

Aaron Rowand: Could be argued that he's playing below expectations, but this guy is the quintessential 4th outfielder and seems to be filling that role admirably. I still love the attitude he brings to the game, amazing intensity.

Magglio Ordonez: Someone with Maggs numbers in the "as expected" category?!?! But it's what we've come to expect from Maggs, a great season, and he's delivering, as is his wont.

Jose Valentin: Perhaps a little shaky on the offensive side, but still the heart of this team, and a ballplayer who'll do anything to help the sox get a win. Same attitude he's brought the past two seasons. Besides, he's hit around .250 for his career, and that's about where he sits right now.

Ray Durham: It was hard to decide if Ray should go in the underachiever group or not. However, I'm averaging the beginning of the year when he played way above the expeceted level with his recent play where he's been borderline stinking up the joint and calling it even. A little weak with the stick, a little shaky in the field, but wasn't he last year too?

Mark Johnson: One **** of a solid defensive catcher, something Sandy hasn't been. Not the best offensive numbers, but he knows how to take a walk and move the runner over, so at least he still tries to help the team.

And now, for you optimists out there, those sox players exceeding expectations this year (according to me :D: )

Rocky Biddle: Coming off of an injury, he's been incredibly solid out of the pen. Keep building up this guy's arm strength and get him in the rotation!

Mark Buehrle: I was among those who thought Mark would have a solid year but not come close to last year's numbers. I'll gladly eat crow on that one. He's been outstanding.

Jon Garland: Lots of people said this year he'd break out, but saying he'll break out and him actually doing it are two different things. Had a rough start to the year but really came on the last few starts. Let's seem him turn it around after a shaky outing against the cubs.

Gary Glover: Has been sort of a Sean Lowe for the team this year. Decent as a fill in for the rotation, though it definitely seems as if his permanent home isn't there. Great in the bullpen, solid bridge guy to whoever the closer of the moment is.

Bob Howry: After last year and all the questions whirling about him in the spring, he's been very solid this year. Has the occasional shaky outing where he feels the need to walk the entire opposing team and a few of their fans while he's at it, but as a whole, has done a nice job.

Damaso Marte: When we first got this guy, I looked at the scouting reports and promptly began to worry (as comes natural to me, being a sox fan) but he's been a pleasant surprise. A power lefty in the bullpen, I'll take it!

Antonio Osuna: Was synonomous with "blown lead" last season, then followed the trend and got hurt. The closer of the day, and has been great in that role for his first week. More than I expected out of him.

Dan Wright: Danny was hard to place, but his good starts are becoming more frequent, and his horrendous ones, less frequent. Has the stuff to be great, I'm giving him the benefit of the doubt and saying he'll keep getting better as the season goes on, putting him in this category.

Kelly Wunsch: Has reverted to a 2000-esque form, quite admirable coming off of an injury. What's this, two lefties in the pen?!?!? Holy Ken Vining batman!!

Tony Graffanino: Superman off the bench. Can play 3 infield positions and at one point, and perhaps currently, our emergency 3rd catcher (now that could be scary). Has hit consistently and been an occasional to frequent spark for the offense. I sure am glad that tampa bay had no space on their roster for him.

Paul Konerko: Far surpassing his typical .295 - 25 - 100 pace, and it's great to see. In a race with Maggs for the title of best hitter on the Sox. Average in the field to, while making the occasional great play and remarkably smooth at turning the 3-6-3 and starting 3-6-1 DPs

Kenny Lofton: Slipping of late with some nagging injuries, but still playing very well when compared to some of his recent seasons. Can be the spark the team needs in the leadoff spot when healthy, and I'll still take him over Singleton any day (sorry CLR)

Others I have thoughts on:

Josh Paul: I don't have a problem with him backing up mark with sandy on the DL. May not be the future star catcher the Sox initially thought he'd be, but he's decent.

Willie Harris: I love this guy's potential. Seems like a future leadoff guy to me, and pretty versatile in the field from what I hear. It'd be nice to get him some game action so we could see what he can do on this level.

Jon Rauch: Struggled with the big club at the beginning of the season. Still seems to be recovering from his injury. Definitely showed flashes of the guy who was the minor league player of the year in 2000. Future ace? I think he can still get there.

Joe Crede: Should be with the big club, his time will come, I just hope it's with the Sox.

Matt Ginter: Sacrifice to get Willie up here for the games in NL parks. Was pitching very solidly out of the pen, surprisingly so in fact. I won't mind seeing him come back up.

Anyone I missed? Probably was. I'm sure people will disagree with what I said, but that's half the point in posting this. Let me know what you think.

06-18-2002, 12:41 PM
I agreed with most, but disagree that Glover, Wright or Garland have exceeded expectations. Garland and Wright are about where I would have expected, but certainly haven't been better than expected. And they need to improve more if we're going to compete for the Division crown. And Glover was a disappointment to me in the starter's role. He has been great in the bullpen, but I really thought he was ready to become a bona fide major league starter.