Quad 1st Basemen
I've been thinking of 1st basemen recently. This off-season all the talk in Boston was about the Red Sox making a play for the Padres' Adrian Gonzalez. Alex Speier points out why a deal for Gonzo is unlikely. I think Alex misses a very big point - Adrian Gonzalez isn't even the big trophy among young 1st basemen anymore. The new BMOF (Big Man on First) is Joey Votto. Compare the two:
Gonzalez 2010 - 10 HR / 33 RBI / .275 BA / .855 OPS
Votto 2010 - 11 HR / 35 RBI / .321 BA / .986 OPS
Adrian Gonzalez is 28-years old with 86 HR the past three years and has a $5.5 million club option for 2011. Joey Votto is 26-years old with 60 HR the past three years and who will be eligible for arbitration for the first time after this season. Votto will probably cost the Reds more in 2011 than Gonzo will cost the Padres. If the Red Sox are to deal top prospects for a 1st basemen - it will more likely be for Votto who would be under team control longer than the 1-year Gonzo would have.
Both players fall short in comparison to current Red Sox 1st basemen Kevin Youkilis who has 12 HR, 38 RBI, a .320 BA and an OPS of 1.064. Exactly why would a 1st baseman be a priority for Boston again?
More interesting to me is this player comparison:
Player A - 8 HR / 34 RBI / .215 BA / .698 OPS
Player B - 6 HR / 17 RBI / .211 BA / .716 OPS
Player A is the Yankees Mark Teixeira while Player B is the Rangers uber prospect Justin Smoak. It should be noted that Teixeira has had double the plate appearances that Smoak has had this season. Smoak was drafted the year after the Rangers traded away Teixeira. I just find the juxtaposition interesting.