What is Dee Gordon?

It has been 2 1/2 years since the Dee Gordon trade that had all sorts of moving parts. Over those three years, we have won the trade several times, lost the trade several times, and even now,  have to wonder just who is Dee Gordon?

Is he the batting champion of 2015?  His first year with the Marlins, Dee led the league in hits (204), batting average (.333), stolen bases (58), and caught stealing (20).  He also won the Silver Slugger award, and a Gold Glove to boot. Sure, he is that guy because he did it, but given his PED suspension will he do it again or come close. Maybe, he’s still all slash and dash and Matty Alou showed that a proper slash and dash can get a boatload of hits and run into a few .330 batting averages.   In July of 2017, Dee Gordon is all slash and dash going 14 for 38 with 3 stolen bases.

Is he the PED child of 2016? The following year Dee was busted for a PED violation and served an 80 day suspension. His production also cratered from his 2016 season, but his stolen base percentage improved dramatically with 30 stolen bases to only seven caught stealing. Yes, he is that guy, but he was one of the stranger PED cases given his game was slash and dash.

Is he worth the contract he signed in January of 2016 right after his break – out season? Maybe? Probably. He continues to steal bases at an elite leve with 32 more this year at the break while only being caught six times.  His defense is still above average according to Fangraphs. Using fWAR Gordon is the 8th best 2nd baseman in the baseball even with an OPS of only 90.

Is he the best base stealer in the baseball not named Billy Hamilton?

Easily

Player            SB From   To   PA CS
Billy Hamilton   222 2013 2017 1920 45
Dee Gordon       194 2013 2017 2130 54
Jose Altuve      177 2013 2017 3165 49
Rajai Davis      157 2013 2017 1964 35
Starling Marte   150 2013 2017 2332 50

Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 7/14/2017.

Dee is also already one of the top 15 stolen base leaders for NL second baseman with at least 70% of games played at 2nd base. Based on the leaderboard below, good chance that Dee Gordon will be 2nd when his career ends. Look at all the Dodgers on this list. Davey Lopes, Eric Young, Delino DeShields, Juan Samuel, Steve Sax, and Dee Gordon.

Player              SB From   To   Age    PA  CS
Joe Morgan         681 1963 1983 19-39 10891 159
Davey Lopes        495 1972 1987 27-42  6016  98
Eric Young         451 1992 2006 25-39  6582 159
Frankie Frisch     419 1919 1937 21-39 10099  74
Delino DeShields   404 1990 2002 21-33  5413 128
Juan Samuel        352 1983 1993 22-32  5792 124
Ryne Sandberg      344 1981 1997 21-37  9282 107
Luis Castillo      336 1996 2010 20-34  6435 127
Johnny Evers       324 1902 1929 20-47  7207  26
Miller Huggins     324 1904 1916 26-38  6795  31
Larry Doyle        298 1907 1920 20-33  7380  41
Steve Sax          290 1981 1988 21-28  4745 126
George Cutshaw     258 1912 1921 25-34  5486  79
 Dee Gordon         250 2011 2017 23-29  2693  71
Bill Doran         208 1982 1992 24-34  5855  93
Brandon Phillips   201 2006 2017 25-36  7225  73
Quilvio Veras      183 1995 2001 24-30  3293  83
Tom Herr           178 1979 1991 23-35  5771  61
Dick Egan          167 1908 1916 24-32  3547  14
Rodney Scott       166 1976 1982 22-28  2021  42

Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 7/14/2017.

So what is Dee Gordon? Dee Gordon is all those guys and a solid 2nd baseman who augments elite speed and defense to singles based offense. If he could have learned to take a walk his whole game might be considered elite but he’ll have to settle for being good. Good enough he’s being targeted by multiple teams as an acquisition to help bolster their postseason aspirations.

Advertisements

5 Comments

  1. 68elcamino427

    Career OPS .691

    Career OBP .327

    Leaving his prime at 29.

    30 next season.

    Maybe Gordon makes it to 400 SB.

    Maybe

    Paying $13 mil. Per season?
    Yikes

    Like

  2. He easily makes 400 SB, the question is will he make 500. Now that his stolen base % has improved dramatically, many singles become doubles so the slug % component of the OPS for slash and dash folk doesn’t mean much to me. The OBP is low but not that low. According to Fangraphs a .327 OBP falls between Avg and Above Average. Add in the elite defense and I don’t see a reason for the Yikes at 13 Million. He’s not under contract after the age of 32 which is the best point to drop him. Might be Yikes in 2020 but not now.

    Like

    • 68elcamino427

      Knowing Gordon was popped for roids, his numbers from 2014 and 2015 look kinda fishy to me.
      Thses two seasons stick out like a sore thumb when viewing the list of his production season by season for his career.

      His game is speed. Three years from now, he will be 33.
      One thing the Peds do is enhance recovery time while at the same time helping to mask injury.
      Injury to the fine micro muscle tissue that connects to the tendon.
      The steroids cause this tissue to become brittle.
      The masking allows the player to stay on the field, when otherwise he would be too sore to play, or be playing at a lesser level of performance.

      It is a vicious cycle, the fine muscle tissue over used, not healing, scarring occurs.
      At the same time, the foreign chemicals make the tendons brittle.
      Once you use the stuff it can not be undone, like a bell can not be unrung.
      This is why the patellar tendonitis was so prevalent for a few years among the power hitters.
      We don’t see many cases of this anymore.
      In the NFL and among weight lifters, the will muscle just detach from the tendon, or the tendon from the bone. Biceps and pectoral muscles are common casualties. Also muscles attaching to the femur in the leg. We also saw this happening to a few pitchers for a short time.
      This is also why your doctor will not administer more than three cortisone shots into the same joint.
      Cortisone is a steroid.

      I’ve seen what this stuff does first person.
      Although I never used, I’ve known at least forty people who have.
      Every one of them cautioned me against experimenting with the stuff.

      The Peds also enhance the explosive power of the muscles.
      Faster, more powerful bat speed and a more explosive, faster first three steps.

      So, my feeling is that Gordon’s speed will drop off a cliff in the next few years.
      Without the elite speed, he’s just a banjo hitter.

      Regarding the elite defense, the defensive shifts being implemented today make range less of an issue.

      A really smart guy tipped me off to the penchant 2B have for a steep decline.
      I feel that Gordon may have unwittingly stacked the deck increasing the likelihood that this will happen to him too.

      I feel that he will stay near his career average of around 30 SB for a few more years
      And then that will be that.

      Like

      • You could be right, but his SB work is getting better with age. Maybe the work he did with Lopes back in 2014 is finally paying off as he gets older and understands more how to use what Lopes was trying to teach him. Lopes was a 2nd baseman who carried his excellent SB work deep into his career.

        Like

        • 68elcamino427

          Feelin the Gordon Love!

          Gordon could not carry Lopes jock strap! 🙂

          Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: