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What is up with Plouffe?

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#1 spideyo

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 04:21 PM

After today, 1/3 of his hit are home runs. Normally, that would be an awesome stat, but after going 1 for 4 today, he is now 15 for 94. He actually RAISED his BA to .159. So...what's up with that?

#2 Riverbrian

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 04:37 PM

Plouffe has the talent to make pitchers pay for mistakes. However, in MLB, the pitchers don't make enough mistakes to live on. Plouffe unfortunately spends the majority of his at-bats chasing the pitch the pitcher wants him to chase. Plouffe is clearly a kid with potential that just has not developed to match that potential. 25 years old and he's still a stiff infielder with poor footwork and he struggles with plate discipline. He could come around but the light bulb has to come on. He's kinda Liriano like at that plate. You can see the frustration in his posture at times like Liriano but when something accidentally goes right you can see that potential like Liriano. Plate Discipline has killed many with potential and squashed many promising MLB Dreams.

#3 YourHouseIsMyHouse

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 04:38 PM

He has an extremely low BABIP that is at .152. So in addition to not being very good, he has had some abysmal luck as well.

#4 Bark's Lounge

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 05:21 PM

All Plouffe has show in the bigs is an inability to be defensively worthwhile and to show some HR pop while hitting poorly. This being said I still believe that Plouffe still can turn the corner. There's nothing not to like about a 20HR pop type of player who can play all of the IF positions and the Corner OF positions. Good progress needs to be seen this season to justify his worth. He has another 4 months to prove it. The book is not finished on Plouffe.

#5 Dilligaf69

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 05:33 PM

All Plouffe has show in the bigs is an inability to be defensively worthwhile and to show some HR pop while hitting poorly. This being said I still believe that Plouffe still can turn the corner. There's nothing not to like about a 20HR pop type of player who can play all of the IF positions and the Corner OF positions. Good progress needs to be seen this season to justify his worth. He has another 4 months to prove it. The book is not finished on Plouffe.



Yeah i would agree...just have to keep running him out there everyday. RF or 3B is where he should be when he's playing.

#6 Bark's Lounge

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 05:43 PM

RF or 3B is where he should be when he's playing.


Most definitely!

#7 TwinsTakes-RD

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 06:07 PM

So, does this mean you believe Plouffe is a utility player? How much longer can you go with a guy who isn't hitting and doesn't play very good defense and now doesn't really have a position! I've kind of thought that there's no reason that Plouffe couldn't become a Cuddyer-like player with his defense and be a decent hitter. He probably will never have the intangibles Cuddy has (leadership, community service, MAGIC) but he could probably learn RF and get better at it. But is Plouffe getting more playing time than he deserves? Should someone else be playing instead of him? When should the Twins cut their losses with Plouffe?



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#8 spideyo

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 06:32 PM

I think at this point, as long as Revere is hitting above the Mendoza line Plouffe is not going to have a spot in the outfield. So basically, we're going to be stuck dealing with his sloppy 3b work 7-8 innings a night, at least until Valencia or Burroughs can earn their way back up to the bigs. At that point, Plouffe is going to become a backup or trade bait. I really would be surprised if he actually improves enough this year to make it worth keeping him around for the future.

#9 Bark's Lounge

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 06:34 PM

So, does this mean you believe Plouffe is a utility player? How much longer can you go with a guy who isn't hitting and doesn't play very good defense and now doesn't really have a position! I've kind of thought that there's no reason that Plouffe couldn't become a Cuddyer-like player with his defense and be a decent hitter. He probably will never have the intangibles Cuddy has (leadership, community service, MAGIC) but he could probably learn RF and get better at it. But is Plouffe getting more playing time than he deserves? Should someone else be playing instead of him? When should the Twins cut their losses with Plouffe?


It is up to Plouffe to decide what kind of player he is. In a season of failure and low expectations, there is no better time to throw Plouffe out there day in and day out. I like him at 3B. I suppose you could throw Jamey Carroll out there as a 38 year old journeyman, I am sure Carroll plays a big part in the Twin's future success 3-5 years down the road. Maybe Casilla? Maybe Valencia? Plouffe is out of options and I think he deserves this year to show he can do it. The afforementioned players (excluding Plouffe) are not the answer. Plouffe may not be the answer, but I sure would like to see him have an ample opportunity to prove that is the case. The 2012 season should be his to show, or not show he can cut it.

#10 TwinsTakes-RD

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 07:59 PM

I don't think he's a 3B or an infielder at all. I only see him in the outfield and if he's an outfielder, when does he get playing time? I don't think you can take Ben Revere out of the lineup for Plouffe in the outfield and the Twins have the most prospects in the outfield. Is the answer trading Denard Span and moving Revere to CF? Shouldn't they be looking to trade Span anyways with the need for starting pitching?



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#11 minn55441

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 09:04 PM

I don't think he's a 3B or an infielder at all. I only see him in the outfield and if he's an outfielder, when does he get playing time? I don't think you can take Ben Revere out of the lineup for Plouffe in the outfield and the Twins have the most prospects in the outfield. Is the answer trading Denard Span and moving Revere to CF? Shouldn't they be looking to trade Span anyways with the need for starting pitching?


Exactly! Plouffe is not an infielder. If we are going to give him a chance, give him some consistent playing time in the outfield. I think Bennie also deserves a chance to play everyday. I wouldn't be surprised to see Span, Doumit and the Hammer all traded for some pitching. I think the market will heat up as the trade deadline approaches. The real question is who will earn a spot on the opening day 2014 roster?

Other than Mauer, who will still be around in 2014?
Dozier is the next most likely to still be on the team. Other than those two, I really don't see anyone with a better than 50% chance of still being around in 2 years. I think Terry plans to clean house. Every position will be replaced by youth inside the organization or in some cases a select veteran free agent signing, where we don't have any internal options available.

#12 jorgenswest

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 09:30 PM

He has an extremely low BABIP that is at .152. So in addition to not being very good, he has had some abysmal luck as well.


Given ordinary luck according to BAbip, would his expected batting numbers be worthy of a longer look at 3B or RF?

Of the 250 players with 100 PA, Plouffe ranks 250 in BAbip. BAbip isn't entirely luck. Catchers often populate the bottom 10. Currently the bottom 10 includes 5 catchers, Scott Rolen and Ike Davis. Plouffe, Weeks and Raburn are also there. For them, I think it is extraordinarily bad luck.

#13 cr9617

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 10:30 PM

After today, 1/3 of his hit are home runs. Normally, that would be an awesome stat, but after going 1 for 4 today, he is now 15 for 94. He actually RAISED his BA to .159. So...what's up with that?


What's up with Plouffe? He isn't very good.....

#14 glunn

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 10:55 PM

Plouffe has been a shortstop for most of his career. You would think that he would be able to play third base. My sense is that he has the tools, but lacks the focus.

#15 clutterheart

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 11:10 PM

Plouffe's best asset has always bee potential. He kept getting promoted and was always young for his level. Now he is 25, out of options and near his prime with poor stats his whole career. My guess is he will finish the year with the Twins, be a bench player next year. Get cut and then hit his stride when turns 27 for some other team.

#16 TwinsTakes-RD

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 11:26 PM

The Twins even said before the season that Plouffe would focus on the outfield as his position and now they are starting to put him at 3rd base. He played 3B in the minors in 76 games with 68 of those coming in 2007 & 2008! So 8 games at 3rd base in 3 seasons in the minors and the Twins are going to put him there in the majors? I'd rather see them bring up Burroughs and give him a shot and send Mastroianni down.



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#17 jimbo92107

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 07:33 AM

Plouffe apparently has decided that when he swings, he's going to swing very hard. The rest is all about deciding when to swing, which is difficult.

#18 Top Gun

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 07:39 AM

Plouffe is coming on a bit the last week, he might get it going yet. Keep working!

#19 mike wants wins

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 07:44 AM

He should be playing every day, so they get a better sense of what he can/cannot do in the future. But this team has not really committed to either winning, or playing the youth, imo.
Lighten up Francis....

#20 spideyo

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 09:50 AM

It seems like he has been playing just about every day since Valencia got sent down. And he's not getting better. Why would you think a whole season of throwing him to the wolves is suddenly going to make him blossom into a better player than he's ever been? Remember, his minor league stats were for the most part unimpressive

#21 YourHouseIsMyHouse

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 09:58 AM

Given ordinary luck according to BAbip, would his expected batting numbers be worthy of a longer look at 3B or RF?

Of the 250 players with 100 PA, Plouffe ranks 250 in BAbip. BAbip isn't entirely luck. Catchers often populate the bottom 10. Currently the bottom 10 includes 5 catchers, Scott Rolen and Ike Davis. Plouffe, Weeks and Raburn are also there. For them, I think it is extraordinarily bad luck.


I believe the average mark is .300 for BABIP. Plouffe has always been well below that mark, but when it's that low I have to imagine that there is some bad luck involved. Last year his was .286 which is slightly below average, but reasonable since he isn't much of a line drive hitter. In that season, he was hitting .238. I think it's possible that he could hit for a line like this: .245/.340/.395 If he can get his glove in order, Plouffe isn't too bad an option at 3B. Although, he wouldn't be an asset either. For a RF? Not a chance.

#22 whydidnt

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 10:19 AM

I think they just need to play him and see if he can adjust and improve or not. The HR's show he's got some talent, but like others have posted, if he can't manage the strike zone, he'll never be a quality MLB regular because his glove is so suspect. Let's not forget Cuddyer was very mediocre with the bat his first 3 years with the Twins, and turned into a solid every day player...he wasn't as bad as Plouffe, but if Plouffe somehow turn's into a poor man's Cuddyer, that would be pretty good for this version of the Twins.

#23 TwinsTakes-RD

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 11:19 AM

Something seemed to click for Plouffe in AAA last season and that has to be why they are keeping him around! In the last 7 days, he's hitting .200 (3-15) and has played in 4 of the 7 games on those days. If they want to find out if he can play they need to play him every day! That might be the only good thing about losing like the Twins are right now. They can play these guys right now and see what they have so why are they giving him so many days off? If they don't trust putting him out there, they need to cut their losses and go with someone else. They are afraid to lose him for some reason or he would've been DFA'd a while ago. Komatsu has a brighter future than Plouffe especially as an outfielder.



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#24 Paul

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 12:13 PM

Plouffe apparently has decided that when he swings, he's going to swing very hard...


Plouffe apparently suscribes to the Torri Hunter/Tom Brunansky/Harmon Killebrew school of hitting..."swing hard in case you hit it". I see Plouffe being traded and returned to SS with another team. I see him with a "JJ Hardy light" ceiling. I think he'll settle in and stick with some team because they'll see just enough to keep runnin' him out there.

#25 cr9617

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 01:57 PM

Plouffe apparently suscribes to the Torri Hunter/Tom Brunansky/Harmon Killebrew school of hitting..."swing hard in case you hit it". I see Plouffe being traded and returned to SS with another team. I see him with a "JJ Hardy light" ceiling. I think he'll settle in and stick with some team because they'll see just enough to keep runnin' him out there.


I honestly don't think any team has Plouffe on their radar. And they certainly wouldn't see him as SS material. He's incompetent....

#26 adjacent

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 02:13 PM

I honestly don't think any team has Plouffe on their radar. And they certainly wouldn't see him as SS material. He's incompetent....

Yes, I agree. Pretty much the only comparison that can be make between Ploufffe and Hardy is that both can hit home runs. Defensively, is night and day.

#27 snepp

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 03:23 PM

I believe the average mark is .300 for BABIP.


The league average BABIP is largely irrelevant for hitters, they all establish their own individual average.

#28 Riverbrian

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 07:37 PM

Baseball is a game of luck at times but a large percentage of your luck is made by the hitter. Guess what... If you swing at the low and away pitch and try to pull it. You can make contact but your BABIP is gonna suck. If you have no discipline and let the pitcher lead you around by the nose. Your BABIP is gonna suck. BABIP is not a luck stat yet people like to use it like it is. I read things like he has a high BABIP so regression is expected and that's just over simplification and not true. You have a high BABIP if you are hitting your pitch because you can drive the ball better. In the end... The screaming line drives that are caught and the bloops that fall in even out. Plouffe is getting pushed around by the guy throwing the ball. He needs to improve his pitch selection and wait for the ball he can drive. When or if that happens you will have a real nice Outfielder who can do the utility player thing.

#29 jorgenswest

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 08:11 PM

Our understanding of BAbip differs somewhat. My understanding is that BAbip correlates to line drive percentage. This year, Plouffe is near the bottom in that list also. There is an xBAbip calculation which puts him at around .235. So his combination of low line drive percentage thus far this year and poor luck has led to abysmal offensive numbers. Plouffe has 471 plate appearances. At that number of plate appearances line drive rate (career 15%) does stabilize. BAbip doesn't stabilize even at 650 plate appearances. It is really impossible to use the data at this sample size to definitively say that Plouffe will not be a useful major league hitter. We might be able to say that about Valencia at this time.

#30 Riverbrian

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 09:20 PM

BABIP for hitters is pretty simple. Take your hits and subtract the Homers and divide it by at bats minus homers, strikeouts and Sacrifices. Batting Average on balls in play. No one was quoting expected BABIP until you put the X in front. Heres the deal... I love the advanced metrics. I read them... I understand them and they make sense in the proper dose but if you hang your hat on them... Your hat will end up on the ground and get stepped on from time to time. For all you guys who base your opinions seemingly at the sole discretion of advanced metrics... You are sterilizing the game to a certain point. Watch the game. Baseball is so much more. Watch Plouffe... Plouffe swings at tough pitches. If Joey Votto swung at the pitches Plouffe dives at. Votto would have a low BABIP and the Reds would have traded for Lyle Overbay. Using Metrics... Until you can properly explain the large swings from month to month or year to year. You can't rely on stats alone. No one can explain it with metrics. Try and explain Joe Mauer 2009 with his lifetime of work with stats... It can't be done. Adam Dunn 2011... Albert Pujols 2012. These swings are margin of error and the swings are elephant sized large. This isn't jackknife replication and election exit polling size margin of error. Use baseball metrics to predict the president and Ross Perot would have gotten taken seriously. How does Mike Napoli go from an expected out April, May and June 2011 to unstoppable July, August, September the same year. The stats will tell you it happened but not the why and nothing in his previous seasons suggested that those 3 months were possible. Even the Moneyball A's have figured this out and have lightened up on their use of metrics. They still use them but in the proper dose. Plouffe swings at bad pitches more often then most... He's talented... He either learns better discipline or he gets thrown on the large scrap heap of baseball players who now own a bar.

Edited by Riverbrian, 29 May 2012 - 09:29 PM.