Friday, October 21, 2011

Free Agent Watch: Nick Punto

Nick Punto posted a 1.5 WAR in 2011, even though he played in only 63 games.  He has a.97 WAR average over the past 3 years, worth 2.91 million according to Halladay Standard. The only year he really played full time (150 games in 2007) he had a -.7 WAR. In 2011, he had an OBP of .388, OPS of .809 (career highs), .68 PPG, and 2.63 PAPP. In his career, he has an OBP of .325, .652 OPS, .76 PPG, and 2.91 PAPP. Unless you believe that he will walk more than he will strike out again next season, his 2011 stats seem fluky. His BABIP (at .319) was one of the highest in his career and .021 points higher than his career average. For the first time in his career, he broke .100 on Isolated Slugging. At 33, it makes little sense to say that he has somehow gotten stronger. Baring banned substances, it is not really possible. It is much more likely that it is simply a small statistical size (166 PA). Instead, he is a below league average in both career OBP and career Slugging, hits more grounders than you would like, and can't hit the long ball. On the positive side, he walks more than league average, sees a lot of pitches and has a pretty good pitches per starter metric (a great 105.18 in 2011, not too bad 94.92 for his career). I don't see him playing really any other role than a back up utililty player, and he really shouldn't receive more than about a million and a half.

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