By request, Ryan Theriot still sucks
January 11, 2012 1 Comment
Depending on how interested you are in this year’s MLB Hot Stove, you might have seen this tweet from CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman, an otherwise respected baseball insider. I’ve grown to like Heyman, and would put him on par with the best around in terms of breaking stories on the MLB beat. However, after that doozy about Theriot, he of the TOOTBLAN, I had to step back and chuckle a bit.
Heyman might the only baseball writer that might describe Theriot’s bat as “excellent.” The Twitterverse rightly called out Heyman, and it inspired a Twittersation between a couple writers from Aerys Sports (@SarahSeesSports and @LorInBigD) and myself. I had suggested that if the contributions of the 2011 Cardinals were put into a pie chart, Theriot’s slice wouldn’t be more than a sliver. Thus, said request to create said pie chart was made, and the result is what you see below.
The en vogue catch-all stat for a player’s contribution to a team is WAR, or Wins Above Replacement. As far as I know there are two major authorities for finding a player’s WAR: FanGraphs and Baseball Reference. I don’t have the time to figure out which source might put out a “better” number, so I took an average of the two and stuck all the numbers on a pie chart.
After the top 5, which yielded no real surprises, you have to go to the #22 man on the team to get to Theriot. Also detailed are alllllll the names that had a WAR better than Theriot. Those names include quite a few (Skip Schumaker, Nick Punto, Colby Rasmus) that made considerably less than Theriot did in 2011($3.3 million). Yes, the same Theriot “When I was playing shortstop we were in first place. I know that, [but] it is what it is.”
Unfortunately for all that good and holy in the baseball world, Theriot still gets a World Series ring.