Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Mark DeRosa, we hardly knew ye...

I know this is a little late, and borderline irrelevant, but I wanted to touch a little on Mark DeRosa's potentially career-ending wrist injury.

He's the type of player every team wants-- at least in theory... a versatile guy who can hit, is a hoot in the clubhouse, and is generally just a valuable piece to have on your baseball-themed chess board.

Well... that was 2008 Mark DeRosa... and to a lesser extent, 2009 Mark DeRosa.

The 2008 Mark DeRosa hit 21 dongs with 87 ribeye steaks. The 2009 Mark DeRosa, even with a little time on the DL with that stupid wrist problem hit 23 HR and 78 RBI. From 2006 to 2009, DeRo had a .291 BA. He still played all over the field. He was just a plain old good baseball player.

The Cleveland Indians of all people, saw that DeRosa's star was dimming in 2009 when they dealt him to St. Louis at midseason.

It was this trade that gave Cleveland their future closer in Chris Perez, and began the downfall of DeRo's wrist and career.

The 2 yr./ $12MM deal the Gyros gave DeRo really bothered a lot of fans. Coming off a wrist injury, was a 35 year-old without a truly good position a good idea? Many wrote off the deal as a typical Sabean move.

I liked it at the time because he's the type of player I'd love to have on my fantasy team... and real team for that matter. Unfortunately, the deal ended up being the worst contract since Dave Roberts a few years ago.

Here's a look at DeRosa's career as a Giant:

44 games, 12 runs, 24 hits, 1 HR, 13 RBI, 4 doubles, 11 walks, .224 SLG%, .178 BA, 24 K, 3 errors.

That is just plain depressing. But I bet this breakdown will make you sick.

Here's the money breakdown for Mark DeRosa's contributions:

44 Games = $272,727 per game
24 Hits = $500,000 per hit
1 HR = $12,000,000 per home run
5 XBH = $2.4 MM per extra base hit

Ugh. Gross!

Regardless of how disturbing all this is, it's not fair to Mark to put all this crap on him. There's nothing he could have done to prevent the series of wrist injuries that befell him. He's a hard worker, a dedicated guy, and to accuse him or blame him for his lack of performance isn't fair.

It's rare that I feel bad for multi-millionaires with hot wives, but you know, I do feel for Mark in this case. His career is likely over. If your wrist doesn't work, you can't swing, and if you can't swing, you're gonna be playing basketball in your backyard pool and picking your kids up from elementary school for a living.

Hey. Could be worse.

Baseball is what he loves to do. It's his livelihood, his passion, and he was pretty damn good at it. It's incredibly frustrating to be limited physically when that prevents you from doing things you enjoy. It totally sucks.

And like Barry Zito, another expensive failure, there's no one more disappointed in their Giants career than Mark DeRosa.

With all that said, it's an unfortunate end to a scrappy and solid major league career, and if Mark DeRosa isn't a coach or color analyst for a pro team within the next few years, I'd be shocked.

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