ICYMI, I discussed an intro to this mini-series. I also included the "best and worst" pitchers and catchers. Today, we take a look at infielders.
WAR: 16.4 – Rank: 22 – Leader: Cardinals
WAR: 33.0 – Rank: 6 – Leader: Phillies
Here is one of the positions where Prado would have taken top honor. Instead, Marcus Giles played three seasons during this time frame, which included a monster 2005 season where he put up a 119 wRC+ and played above average defense. Johnson, a fan favorite around here, played four season before oddly becoming non-tendered after two very solid seasons prior to a down season in 2009. Johnson was good for a .346 OBP and rated exactly average on defense. "Best" doesn't exactly get thrown around when talking Dan Uggla as of late, but his 2001 and 2012 seasons weren't bad - they just weren't good enough to warrant the $ and length of his contract. It will be interesting to see is he passes Johnson by seasons end.
Braves fans fell in love with Orr after he his .300 in 112 games in 2005. He struggled in the ned two seasons and was never able to hit enough to warrant playing time. Jesse Garcia was a gem I honestly forgot existed. In 118 PA in 2004, he hit .252, only managing to coax one walk. In the final spot, I used some user discretion. Technically, Phil Gosselin finished with -0.1 fWAR last season, but I thought it was extremely unfair to call him one of the "worst" after he recorded two hits, a walk and an IBB in seven plate appearances. So sorry Nick Green, even though you provided positive value but you're it. He wasn't really that terrible for the role he played in 2004. If you want to put Brooks Conrad in the worst category, go for it - but man you will have a surprise coming for you.
WAR: 30.0 – Rank: 11 – Leader: Phillies
WAR: 46.0 – Rank: 4 – Leader: Mets
Unsurprisingly, Chipper Jones has provided the most value to the Atlanta Braves over the past decade. There are probability a million different stats and memories I could get into, but what he did over the past decade is almost too good for words. Of course, when you have had player like Chipper, the rest of the best is going to be quite the drop off. As you can see Chris Johnson comes in at number two, after a phenomenal 2013 season. And yes, that is Brooks Conrad in the final spot. A couple things on that - Prado probably produced more value at 3B than everyone but Chipper, but because of the way I decided to group guys like him, he played more innings in LF than at 3B, so that's where his is listed. Juan Francisco also accumulated 1.1 wins, but since Conrad played more innings at 3B than 2B I made an executive decision to put him there. He actually put up a solid 101 wRC+, but it was the defense that he will be (rightfully) remembered for.
It came as a surprise to me how bad DeRosa was in his final year as a Braves (2004). In 118 games, he put up a .239/.293/.320 triple slash and was horrendous on defense, committing 10 errors. He was able to turn his career around during his post-Braves career, but he could have single handedly been the reason for Chipper coming back to the 3B from the outfield. Marte also put up a poor 2005 season in limited playing time. In 24 games, yes a super small sample, he put up a remarkable -8 DRS combined with a .227 OBP at the plate. Woodward signed a one year deal with the team, but was terrible both offensively and defensively. To his credit he played all four infield positions, but had the lowest average in the league from a position player.
Tomorrow I'll run through the outfield positions.