Thursday, October 12, 2006

Alex Rodriguez Trade: Part 1

Trading a player as talented as Alex Rodriguez is a monumental point in the history of any franchise. A lot of questions need to be answered in depth in order to make a logical decision. Those questions are:

1. What value does Alex Rodriguez bring to the team?
2. Who would replace Alex Rodriguez if he were dealt?
3. What teams would be interested in Alex? Is there a chance that he could be traded?
4. Is this the best thing for the team?

I will attack #1 right now. For the record, my answer to #4 is "Yes".

1. What Value does Alex Rodriguez bring to the team?

Time for the numbers.

Alex Rodriguez was 29th in the league this year with a VORP of 50.4. He hit an excellent .290/.392/.532 (or roughly equal to Hideki Matsui in 2004). Alex was 5th in VORP among 3rd baseman, trailing Miguel Cabrera, Garrett Atkins, David Wright, and Chipper Jones.

The average AL batter hit .275/.339/.437.

Various defensive measures try to rate Arod. The traditional Zone Rating has him at -8 runs. Overall, that sounds about right to me.

This boils down to Alex being worth about 4-5 wins over replacement level. If Alex was replaced with a roughly .275/.339/.437 hitter, we would have won about 91-92 games.

In the Clutch, Alex Rodriguez was beyond terrible this season, which may reduce his value, but for now I am going to put Alex at 5 wins.

It is important that with any trade, the Yankees get back at least five wins worth of value over replacement level. Ideally, we would improve the team by getting more back.