Last night Garret Anderson became the 89th player in baseball history with 2,500 career hits, which is what happens when you’re a lifetime .295 hitter who rarely takes a walk and have played in 2,145 games.
Anderson has been a solid player for most of his 16 seasons, but a lack of plate discipline and relatively modest power leave him with a career .326 on-base percentage and .465 slugging percentage.
That makes him merely a slightly above average hitter overall, and in fact among all players with 2,500 or more hits Anderson has the seventh-lowest adjusted OPS+ ahead of only five middle infielders, a center fielder, and Bill Buckner:
Luis Aparicio 2677 82
Rabbit Maranville 2605 82
Omar Vizquel 2704 83
Doc Cramer 2705 84
Nellie Fox 2663 93
Bill Buckner 2715 99
GARRET ANDERSON 2501 104
Obviously accumulating 2,500 hits is an impressive accomplishment any way you slice it, but doubles and homers are worth more than singles and walks are worth plenty too, which is why focusing on Anderson’s hit total overstates his value quite a bit. Once you account for overall production rather than just “hits” and factor in both position and defensive value, only Buckner has a less-impressive resume for the 2,500-hit club.
Scott Kazmir won’t begin the regular season in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Manager Dave Roberts said after Kazmir’s Cactus League outing on Sunday that it “doesn’t make sense” for the ailing Kazmir to break camp in the rotation, Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times reports. The lefty will instead rehab some more and join the rotation at a later time.
Kazmir has been battling a hip issue which has caused his mechanics to suffer. He was clocked in the low 80’s 10 days ago and wasn’t much better on Sunday afternoon.
Last season with the Dodgers, Kazmir posted a 4.56 ERA with a 134/52 K/BB ratio in 136 1/3 innings, his worst numbers since returning to the majors in 2013.
Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that Robert Gsellman has won the No. 4 spot in the Mets’ starting rotation. He adds that the Mets are likely to play things cautiously with lefty Steven Matz. The fifth and final rotation spot will go to either Zack Wheeler or Seth Lugo.
Gsellman, 23, has had a great spring. The right-hander has allowed three earned runs on 15 hits and four walks with nine strikeouts in 17 1/3 innings. That is on the heels of seven solid starts at the end of the 2016 season during which he yielded 12 earned runs on 40 hits and 12 walks with 40 strikeouts in 41 innings.
Matz, 25, is dealing with irritation in his left elbow. He had surgery in October to remove a bone spur and was a Tommy John patient several years ago. It sounds like the Mets are leaning towards having him start the season on the disabled list.
Wheeler, 26, isn’t having a great spring. He’s surrendered seven runs in 7 1/3 innings. Lugo has given up three earned runs in seven spring innings and also looked solid in the World Baseball Classic although he took the loss in the final against the United States.