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Eduardo Escobar

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#1 jorgenswest

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 08:26 AM

Escobar is third among AL shortstops in wRC+ at 102.

http://www.fangraphs...ers=0&sort=17,d

Since Roy Smalley in 1980 only one shortstop has a better wRC+ than Escobar's current 102. Christian Guzman in 2001 with 111 was better.

He is 25. He has a better than average glove. He is playing like the SS the Twins have been seeking for over 30 years. Is it possible that he is better than a utility player? Is our perception of a Eduardo still shaded by the disappointment of the Liriano return and the epic rant on Twins Daily?

Edited by jorgenswest, 12 August 2014 - 08:28 AM.


#2 Kirby_waved_at_me

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 09:04 AM

Good defense and 31 Doubles (that's 5th in the AL among all hitters) - Escobar has been much better than expected. Comparing this year to the rest of his career, he certainly seems to have turned a corner and earned his spot as the regular starting Shortstop.

Still would like to see Santana getting some reps there, but honestly it feels like Escobar has done enough to show he should be the guy for the Twins at SS in the near future.

Edited by Kirby_Waved_At_Me, 12 August 2014 - 09:06 AM.


#3 beckmt

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 09:22 AM

Escobar does need to be in the mix at SS.  Do not know whether he or Santana will be better, but competition is better there than in several years.


#4 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 09:27 AM

I don't believe Escobar should be in the mix next season, I think he has earned the starting shortstop job next spring unless something drastically changes in the next two months.

 

It's hard to say anything negative about the guy. He has exceeded every expectation I had for him going into the season.

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#5 Thegrin

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 09:28 AM

Just because Santana was a mediocre fielding SS in the Minors, does not mean that he should automatically replace Escobar at Short.  :)


#6 spycake

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 09:35 AM

As for rank, it seems to be a slightly down year for AL SS -- this wRC+ would have only ranked 5th at the position in 2013 and 2012, and 8th in 2011 (min. 400 PA).

 

My other note of caution is that this might be Escobar's peak.  Punto certainly looked like "more than a utility player" at times, only 93-96 wRC+ but with excellent defense he projected as a 3-4 fWAR player in multiple seasons.  Escobar has the advantage of age, but his record suggests that 102 wRC+ is more his peak than his average.  A nice stabilizing fill-in at the position this year, for sure, but like Suzuki, he shouldn't preclude other options going forward.

 

Definitely gets hurt by the Liriano trade perception, in my mind.  Looked like a futility infielder eating up a 40-man roster spot at the time, but he has salvaged that trade.  The Morneau trade return is now at the top of the disappointment list, although he was more expensive and it was only for one month.  Otherwise, Ryan has acquitted himself quite well in his recent trades (even if his 1990s vets for prospect swaps are no longer possible).

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#7 mike wants wins

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 09:36 AM

I think Esco should be the SS next year. I think Santana should be the CF until Buxton is, then the LF (and rotating around the OF to give people breaks). Frankly, not certain Arcia is a MLB hitter right now.....so there might even be room for him in RF.

What I just typed is probably an opinion, not a fact. I mean, I'm usually right, so you should maybe assume it is or will be a fact soon, but that's up to you. :)


#8 stringer bell

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 09:38 AM

I was a little late to the EE Bandwagon, but I'm on it now. He and Santana are perhaps opposites--Santana does things where you say "oh, my!" and we all love his speed. I wrote yesterday that Escobar is thoroughly unspectacular. However, he has a good glove, decent range, and a strong, accurate arm. He makes the plays in the field and is fundamentally sound.

Escobar slid from an unreal .300+ average to a more realistic .270+, but I think he can and will sustain something close to that. He is going to get well over 400 PAs and 3/4 of the way to the end of the season, he looks fresh.

While Santana has been a big surprise, I still would pencil in EE at short for 2015. Danny can find his at-bats elsewhere.

#9 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 09:40 AM

Frankly, not certain Arcia is a MLB hitter right now

 

I hear this often and I don't get it. Oswaldo has an OPS+ of 96. Yeah, he's awful against lefties (as are many LHB, especially 23 year old LHB) but he hits for enough power to stay relevant. He's only going to get better by playing every day as he has absolutely demolished AAA pitching multiple times.

 

Maybe he turns into Jacque Jones. That's not such a bad thing but he has the ability to be more than that and the only way the Twins will find out is if they throw him out there every day.


#10 mike wants wins

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 10:10 AM

I didn't say don't throw him out there, I said I wasn't sure he was a hitter (and fielder) right now. Are you sure he's a legit MLB hitter/fielder that is a good starter on a good team? 

What I just typed is probably an opinion, not a fact. I mean, I'm usually right, so you should maybe assume it is or will be a fact soon, but that's up to you. :)


#11 drjim

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 10:18 AM

I didn't say don't throw him out there, I said I wasn't sure he was a hitter (and fielder) right now. Are you sure he's a legit MLB hitter/fielder that is a good starter on a good team? 

 

He could certainly be a near everyday player on a good team right now, would probably bat lower in the order to protect him a little.

 

He is still under two years of service time and was one of the ten youngest regulars in baseball at the start of the season. There is certainly time to improve.

 

Talent is there, just needs to close some of the holes in his plate coverage.

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#12 mike wants wins

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 10:21 AM

How is that different than what I said? He could be, is not the same as "I'm sure he is", right? You guys seem to be arguing a point I did not make.

What I just typed is probably an opinion, not a fact. I mean, I'm usually right, so you should maybe assume it is or will be a fact soon, but that's up to you. :)


#13 CRArko

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 10:32 AM

It's Escobar's job to lose. Nunez can be the utility guy. Until Polanco returns.

Santana has been a better CF than we had any reason to expect. He and Rosario may turn out to be an interesting competition.
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#14 twinsfan34

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 10:53 AM

I love Escobar's hustle. When he hits a ball to the OF...he's thinking 2B or 3B every time...forces the action. Then on the bases...on balls in play, again, forces the issue. Dozier does too. Santana as well. Those guys make other teams execute in the field. Reminds me a bit of the 'piranhas' we had back in the day. But these guys have more power/ability and are younger (Tyner, Bartlett, Castillo, Punto). Add Buxton, would really force teams to be 'perfect' in the field with those 4 on the basepaths with any regularity.


#15 Danchat

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 11:01 AM

It looks like the Eddie 400 really worked out! I was on that bandwagon and it's clear that Escobar should be the starting SS for right now. It's good problem to have a lot of SS prospects. The next two years should be very interesting for SS and 3B.

 

I thought the Liriano trade was good when we made it, and now's it looking great. I'm glad we've been dumping veterans for young players who might do well, because some of the time, they will do well.

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#16 ericchri

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 11:17 AM

Even though we all know that Santana probably shouldn't be in CF, the reality is that makes the most sense at this point.  Assuming he's okay with it (and having a starting job in MLB would be a pretty tempting inducement), if Santana keeps hitting (that bunt hit last night was beautiful, and very encouraging for the future) I see no reason why he can't slot in as the permanent LF for this team when Buxton is ready.  The nice thing about that is then your 4th outfielder can be somebody who just bashes the ball, defense-be-damned, cause you slide Santana into CF on days when Buxton needs a break (same is true if Hicks figures it out and is pushed to a corner). 

 

Escobar has earned the starting SS job with his play this year, more power to him.  He deserves to keep it until somebody proves to be an even better option at the position.  While he looks promising, I doubt Polanco does that next year.  Gordon is years away. 

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#17 SpiritofVodkaDave

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 01:17 PM

Might be a good time to sell high on Escobar after this season?

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#18 Kirby_waved_at_me

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 01:27 PM

Might be a good time to sell high on Escobar after this season?

Maybe - I think I would prefer to keep Escobar and Santana until another prospect comes along to take one of their places - that could be pretty soon.

Opening 2015 with Santana in CF and Escobar at SS is currently the best option.  I think Escobar would need to show that this season is repeatable before he would have "sell high" trade value. He's been great this year, no question.


#19 Hosken Bombo Disco

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 01:30 PM

It's possible Gardenhire and the coaches have played him just the right amount and pushed all the right buttons, to get maximum production out of him. However I would like to see Eddie get at least 3/4 playing time at short the rest of the year. Let's find out how he holds up through the end.

Also, Escobar should get every chance in 2015 that Florimon got this year.
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#20 Kirby_waved_at_me

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 02:03 PM

It's possible Gardenhire and the coaches have played him just the right amount and pushed all the right buttons, to get maximum production out of him. However I would like to see Eddie get at least 3/4 playing time at short the rest of the year. Let's find out how he holds up through the end.

Also, Escobar should get every chance in 2015 that Florimon got this year.

 

Maybe even a little more, given the fact that Eddie has hit much better than Florimon ever has.


#21 Oldgoat_MN

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 02:23 PM

I don't think EE's year should be that surprising.

 

When he went down to AAA last year he clearly figured something out.

I am optimistic that he can be a good fielding SS with a good bat (for a SS) for the Twins for some time.

 

Doesn't mean I don't think Santana should play there sometimes, just that EE is our SS for now.

 

And I suspect that the 'trade him now' was tongue in cheek.

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#22 huhguy

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 02:43 PM

Escobar is 2nd on team for MVP, only Dozier would rank in front of him.

 

Not only is his bat far superior to Florimon, he is better defenisively..

 

Love the guy....


#23 twinsnorth49

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 02:54 PM

This conversation about Escobar is eerily similar to the one about Dozier two years ago, that seemed to have worked out ok.

 

Now clearly Eduardo is not Dozier but not many people thought Dozier would turn into this Dozier either. Escobar has definitely earned the opportunity to be this teams starting SS next spring and continue proving he can be an effective everyday player. I'm more than comfortable with him in the lineup.


#24 ashburyjohn

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 03:21 PM

It's possible Gardenhire and the coaches have played him just the right amount and pushed all the right buttons, to get maximum production out of him. However I would like to see Eddie get at least 3/4 playing time at short the rest of the year. Let's find out how he holds up through the end.

Agreed.  I was in favor of giving Esco-bear more playing time before there was an Eddie 400, and I preferred his upside over that of Florimon to start this season.  But, I still think he is likely a utility guy on a good team (or a starter on a bad team), and you described why.  Still, I'm in favor of giving him the chance now to prove I underestimated him, but I won't sour on him as a utility player if he comes back to earth under the strain of everyday play.  Playing everyday wears you down, and I could see this as his downfall.


#25 ScottyB

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 05:40 PM

You guys just don't get it.  The SS of the future is definitely Florimon - no one else should be considered. :lol:


#26 TheLeviathan

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 06:43 PM

If the Twins have a legitimate plan in CF, then I think you move Santana back to SS and shop Escobar hard.  

 

He's had a great year and I hope it continues, but I'd be hesitant to bet on it.

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#27 stringer bell

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 07:38 PM

One of the best developments for the Twins this year is what has happened at shortstop. Instead of the flawed Florimon followed by questionable players, the Twins have Escobar, having a nice year, Santana, having a breakout rookie season, Nunez, who looks like a solid utility guy. In the minors, Polanco has had a nice season and the Twins used their #1 draft pick on Gordon, who could be a fine player.

#28 Thrylos

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 07:41 PM

Glad to see that happen with Esco, but have to say that I was not surprised. 

 

The writing was on the wall...

 

Glad he got the opportunity to perform (after they wasted a month and a bit in the beginning of the season.)

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#29 Paul Pleiss

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Posted 13 August 2014 - 12:00 AM

Escobar is not good at defense. He's not bad, he's certaintly not flashy, but he's dependable to make average plays. I'll take that with his doubles production, even if this is just a flash in the pan. Let him and Santana slug it out for the job this September and into spring training.

 

I love what Escboar brings, he's probably not a SS on a divison winning team, but the Twins don't have that, not this season, and not next season. If Santana continues to hit if/when Buxton arrives, then maybe there's a dilema. Or if Hicks shows he can hit, and not just walk, at the MLB level. I think its easy to find playing time for guys who are playing with on this team, plenty of guys who are "eh" offensively.

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#30 Willihammer

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Posted 13 August 2014 - 12:38 PM

I don't wanna hate but I refuse to ignore the peripherals. He strikes out 3.5 times per walk, and his BABIP is still very high. In July when he had a .311 BABIP his line was .263/.300/.342. That's probably closer to his true talent IMO.

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