The Oakland Athletics need more production out of 1B in 2011

Blogged under Bloglockers,Front Page,General,Positional Preview for Season by chinmusic on Monday 7 February 2011 at 12:56 am

The Oakland A’s need better power numbers out of the 1B in 2011. 25-year old lefty swinging Daric Barton will be the starter at 1B once again in 2011. Barton played in 159 games for the A’s last season and he was 152 of 556 (.273 avg, .798 OPS) with 79 runs scored, 10 homers, 57 RBIs and 7 stolen bases. Barton isn’t afraid to take a walk as he had 110 of them in 2010 but he also whiffed 102 times which is too many for a player with very little power. Barton is not a good defensive 1B either as he had 10 errors in 157 games for the A’s last season.

28-year old righty swinging Conor Jackson will be Barton’s backup in 2011. He will get most of his ABs in the outfield and at DH in 2011. Jackson made 0 errors in 3 games at 1B and he’s a slick defender there.

PROJECTED GRADE FOR THE A’S 1B IN 2011: C-

2 Comments »

  1. Comment by james p — February 7, 2011 @ 10:26 am

    I plan on getting to the other position assessments at some point, but for now ill express my displeasure with the 1B analysis. First, while Barton didn’t provide above average power at the position last year, he was an above average hitter (119 ops+) and the analysis of his defense couldn’t be more wrong. Errors are not a good stat to use when looking at defensive value. All the advanced metrics say Barton was one of the best defensive 1B in the game last year, and when coupled with his offensive performance he produced a very good 4.9 WAR last year which led the A’s, and was 6th best among american league 1B. Long story short, the A’s are just fine at 1B with Daric Barton. Let’s also keep in mind that the young man is just now entering his age 25 season, where most prospects are just getting their feet wet at the major league level. During Bartons prime years which we are fast approaching, I would expect the same stellar defense with consistent .290/.410/.440 type seasons. A very valuable first baseman for any team.

  2. Comment by chinmusic — February 15, 2011 @ 1:19 pm

    James, I can come up with 9 guys just in the American League that I would take over Daric Barton at 1B. Mark Teixeira, Derrek Lee, Adrian Gonzalez, Adam Lind, Paul Konerko, Miguel Cabrera, Billy Butler, Justin Morneau and Kendry Morales. There might even be more by the end of the year depending on how well some of the other young 1B play. With that in mind, I think Barton is no better than the 10th best 1B in the A.L. You run out a bunch of fancy stats but the corner infield positions are all about power hitting. I just don’t think Barton has the potential to hit more than 15 homers in a year, so he is not an asset at 1B no matter how many times he walks.

    As far as defense goes, I have never been impressed with him in the field. Sorry, but errors do matter in baseball because they lead to the pitcher throwing extra pitches and often times the errors cost a team runs.

    I think Barton would be an asset as a hitter if he played 2B or SS for the A’s but he doesn’t. At 1B, he’s below average as a player, period. I don’t buy into Billy Beane’s mumbo jumbo.

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