Did Chris Coghlan have a 'historic' rookie year?

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Juan C. Rodriguez covers the Marlins for the Florida Sun Sentinel and apparently believes that Chris Coghlan had an absolutely spectacular rookie season.
Last week Rodriguez criticized the Baseball Bloggers Alliance for ranking Coghlan fourth in their Rookie of the Year balloting despite “the historic nature of Coghlan’s offensive season.” This week Rodriguez criticized the Players Association for choosing J.A. Happ as their Rookie of the Year despite Coghlan’s “multitude of historic achievements.”
In reality the basis for Coghlan’s supposed “historic” rookie season was notching 50 hits in back-to-back months, which while very impressive merely contributed to his batting .321/.390/.460 in 128 games overall. Don’t get me wrong, those are strong numbers for a rookie. However, there’s nothing “historic” about an .850 OPS from a left fielder, nor is there anything “historic” about a poor defensive player totaling nine homers, 47 RBIs, and 84 runs in 565 plate appearances.
Fellow rookie Andrew McCutchen hit .286/.365/.471 in 108 games to nearly match Coghlan with an .836 OPS, and he did so while swiping 22 bases and playing an excellent center field. According to Fan Graphs the sum of Coghlan’s offensive and defensive contributions were worth 23.9 runs above replacement level, which tied for 60th among NL position players. McCutchen was 34.0 runs above replacement level, which ranked 28th. Who had the historic rookie season, again?
And there were some good rookie pitchers too. Happ was 12-4 with a 2.93 ERA in 166 innings. Tommy Hanson went 11-4 with a 2.89 ERA 128 innings. Randy Wells went 12-10 with a 3.05 ERA in 165 innings. McCutchen and all three pitchers have strong arguments for being more valuable than a left fielder with an .850 OPS. Coghlan played very well and deserves consideration for Rookie of the Year awards, but there’s nothing “historic” about his rookie season no matter how much Rodriguez enjoyed covering him.

Dodgers plan to tab Clayton Kershaw for Game 1 of World Series

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MLB.com’s Ken Gurnick reports that the Dodgers plan to tab ace Clayton Kershaw for Game 1 of the World Series. Nothing is set in stone yet ahead of Tuesday’s Game 1 of the World Series. In the event Kershaw can’t start Game 1, Rich Hill would start. Otherwise, Hill would start Game 4.

Kershaw, started Game 1 and Game 5 of the NLCS against the Brewers, then closed out Game 7 with a flawless inning. He was hit around to the tune of five runs (four earned) over three-plus innings in Game 1, but rebounded for seven innings of one-run ball in Game 5. He struck out two en route to sending the Dodgers to the World Series in the ninth inning of Game 7.

Kershaw also tossed eight shutout innings against the Braves in Game 2 of the NLDS. Overall, he has a 2.37 ERA in 19 innings this postseason. There was no doubt who would be the Dodgers’ first choice to start Game 1, but it’s a relatively recent situation where the ace of a team also closed out the final game of the previous series.

Hill has put up a 2.61 ERA in 10 1/3 innings this postseason. While he doesn’t have Kershaw’s pedigree, the Dodgers would be confident having him lead off the series. Hill was excellent down the stretch last year, helping the Dodgers reach Game 7 of the World Series against the Astros.

The Red Sox plan to start Chris Sale in Game 1 now that he’s recovered from a brief stint in the hospital due to a stomach ailment. The lefty has a 3.48 in 10 1/3 innings in the playoffs this year. He’s among a handful of candidates for the AL Cy Young award after posting a 2.11 ERA in the regular season, but his lack of innings (158) may hurt him.