Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Is Chase Utley Undervalued By The Media?

"Maybe the media simply has no idea how valuable Chase Utley is,..." said Tom Tango at his The Book blog. If so, I think it might have something to do with Utley being a 2B man.

I looked at how many MVP awards have gone to each position as well as MVP award shares. 2B men have done very poorly. Go to MVP Awards And Award Shares By Position to see that study. And it is the media (the writers) who vote. 1B men have won 26 awards while 2B men have won only 10. The discrepancy is even bigger for award shares. Are 2B men really not that good? I don't think so. I counted about 11 2Bmen in the top 100 at Sean Smith's list of the best all-time players by wins above replacement value. And there were some other guys who played part of their careers at 2B.

I also did a study called Have Second Basemen Been Underpaid? It certainly is not conclusive, but it is suggestive. Maybe there is just a general mis-perception of how valuable 2B men are and that it is not limited to the media.

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