Swing Versus Arm

By / August 11, 2010 / 2010 Season

Every team has that one area where they are the weakest. Some think it is the pitcher’s spot. Some the number eight hole. Either way, it is always at the bottom of the order. At the same time, the one who is usually the weakest link in the lineup can sometimes offer something major defensively.

Take a trip with me to a time where the New York Mets had the best infield in the majors. It was a time where they were on the verge of making the playoffs and eventually did. Do you remember who the members of that infield were? Well, I’ll give you one name: Rey Ordóñez.

This guy could not hit for his life. Here’s a whiff of his numbers:

Lowest BA .188 (1999)
Highest BA .258 (2000)

Those were his numbers as a Met. Not very impressive. I mean, I remember fans always tearing him apart as I watched the games. Every time he came to the plate, he was pretty much a guaranteed out. All he could do was bunt.

Now when it came to fielding, he was untouchable. He received three gold gloves in back-to-back-to-back years 1997-1999. Rey Rey was first in fielding shortstops in 1997 (.983) and 1999 (.994). Came in second in 2001 (.980). Despite his inability to hit, he still proved to be vital to the team by way of defense.

So is the case with Jeff Francoeur. Yes, he seems to be unable to hit as of late. In layman’s terms, he is hitting like Ordóñez. And in like Ordóñez-fashion, Francoeur is also playing some killer defense. How often does anyone dare to challenge his arm?

My point quote simply is this: Sometimes you have to sacrifice a little offense for some defense. Right field in Citi Field is not a corner everyone can play. Francoeur makes it look easy. He has that corner pretty much mastered.

If we put up with Ordóñez and his lack of hitting for all of those years, why not Francoeur?

He has a gold glove too for 2007. I would like to see him stay. The other guys can learn to hit as well. I mean, the left side of our infield and outfield was supposed to be a powerhouse. FAIL! Yet nobody seems to be calling for those guys to be traded.


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robert feldmann

totally agree offense isn’t everything gloves are just as valuable as bats

William Valderrama

Great article, were you listening to the broadcast when they were talking about this?


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