The Pujols negotiations are, well, pretty boring. If you are like me, you’re sick of hearing about aimless speculation about what will happen next. So lets speculate less aimlessly, if you will, about the future at first base without Five. We’ve got a few options. One, Matt Adams, may be a little far away, but that could change with an incredibly important, and what I cautiously see as a difficult, year for him in 2011. The other two are Mark Hamilton, and Allen Craig, viable mid-20′s players that could provide what most teams want from the corners — a hitter — one being more practical than the other. Let me explain…
Archive for the “Allen Craig” Category
Andrew in Allen Craig, analysis, Mark Hamilton, Matt Adams, tags: 2009 Draft, Albert Pujols, Allen Craig, Mark Hamilton, Matt Adams, St. Louis Cardinals
Allen Craig as long been a favorite in these parts. Erik interviewed him. Roarke profiled him. He’s looked and played the part of a post-Ryan Ludwick every year up until last year where bad luck and stiff MLB competition faltered his steps a bit. What can we expect in 2011 and will it be enough?
Tyler Greene up. He’s had some defensive miscues but he’s hitting at a reasonable clip and he’s a very good fielder when you evaluate his total body of work.
Jon Jay up. He’s your fourth outfielder who is likely to spell Ludwick and Holliday on their offdays. Mather in center on Colby’s offdays make the most sense to me since those offdays should be against lefties when needed.
Allen Craig optioned. Not unexpected and makes some sense to let Craig get regular playing time and get things going.
Felipe Lopez to the DL. I hope this isn’t worse than it turns out to be. Makes you wonder if this wasn’t some of the delay with his offseason contract.
azruavatar in Allen Craig, Joe Mather, Jon Jay, Tyler Henley
Establishing a starting pitcher appears to be well under way with Jaime Garcia. The minors has produced a handful of players the Cardinals have considered for the hot corner in David Freese, Joe Mather and Allen Craig with the former apparently winning the position. So what’s the next need that will arise? It’s almost certainly right field.
One of the common arguments about valuing free agents is the fact that no deal is made in isolation. For every player that a team doesn’t sign, there’s some alternative. It’s almost certainly not an alternative they wanted to exercise and often it’s a substantial downgrade but establishing the baseline performance of that alternative gives us an idea of what the dropoff is. Starting off, we’ll take a quick look at left field.
I don’t have a lot of faith in the Schumaker to 2B conversion. We can compare WARs between Kennedy and Schumaker and show that, even assuming atrocious defense, the drop off should be insignificant or non-existent. Part of the problem is how we’re framing this debate though. We’re going into the season assuming that Kennedy-level performance (~1 WAR) is what we should expect from second. That’s a bogus assumption when their are upgrades available on the free agent market and via trade. Even assuming Schumaker makes a successful conversion and becomes a ~1.5 WAR player at second with below average defense, why are we accepting that as a positive thing?
azruavatar in Allen Craig, David Freese
We’re introducing a new format to some of our posts. In an effort to further clarify and explore some of the different prospect rankings, we’ll bring you more opinion-oriented posts where erik, roarke and myself discuss prospects from a variety of angles. Today we unveil the first of this irregular and unplanned series with Allen Craig and David Freese.
[edit: Kevin Goldstein's Top 11 may come out today. Feel free to discuss that in this thread as well.]
roarke in Allen Craig, prospect profiles, tags: Allen Craig
The pocket-sized version of Allen Craig‘s player profile is this: third baseman drafted out of college, has hit for good average and power at every stop and the only question mark is whether his defense is good enough at third base to play in the majors. Hmmm… that sounds familiar for some reason.
I was able to catch up with Springfield 3B and Baseball America’s 15th ranked Cardinal prospect Allen Craig and ask him about hitting, defense, and the importance of winning at the minor league level.
Interview after the jump.
roarke in Allen Craig, Daily Farm Reports, David Freese, Jess Todd
Baseball Prospectus continued its ‘PECOTA Takes On…’ series with third base prospects today. This article is probably for subscribers only, but I think I can go so far as to mention that David Freese made the list as a “Very Good Prospect” (which is odd, because that list actually ranks below the list of “Good Prospects”). Allen Craig did not make the list at all. Both Freese (.284/.336/.480) and Craig (.284/.342/.493) are off to solid starts to the season and probably deserve a little more respect than PECOTA gave them based on their careers prior to this season. I imagine that Freese was downgraded in PECOTA because he had never played above high A before this season and he is 25 years old, but after skipping AA and mainting a solid performance in AAA I would imagine that criticism would fade. It is a little harder to understand why Craig would be overlooked by PECOTA, since he has hit at every stop and has been fairly age-appropriate for each level. Regardless, I think Freese and Craig are emblematic of the newfound depth in the system. The outfield isn’t the only position that is getting crowded with solid prospects in the upper levels.
The system played four games tonight and all the details are after the jump. Read the rest of this entry »