So what does $5.5m buy these days, anyway?
BA: .269 (.021)
OBP: .325 (.021)
SLG: .445 (.039)
IsoPa: .056 (.012)
IsoPo: .176 (.024)
(Note: "IsoPa" refers to "Isolated Patience", or OBP - BA, while "IsoPo" refers to "Isolated Power, or SLG - BA. For the rate stats, the propagated error is listed in parentheses. Thanks a million to reader Bryan McCulloch for helping out with the calculations.)
An interesting and actually quite reasonable projection, with a conservative translation to a .278/.331/.463 line in a normal park. Nothing fantastic, right around average for a corner outfielder, but a damn fine approximation of what he did two years ago, and a steady power threat to bat around #6/7 in the lineup. He's not going to get himself on base that often, but if everything breaks right he'll be enough of a prick to get beaned another 15-20 times, which're basically like free runs. I've always wondered how players like Guillen, Craig Biggio and Jason Kendall manage to get hit so often. Standing close to the plate is part of it, but it can't tell the whole story, because pitchers are generally pretty good about staying away from the hitter if they want to. There has to be another factor in play. The way I figure, Kendall gets hit because for a while he was the only threat in the Pittsburgh lineup and beaning him was 75% quicker than an intentional walk and now it's just become routine, Biggio gets hit because pitchers want to know if a baseball can kill a midget, and Guillen gets hit because he's an ass, and you have to get him before he gets you. It's an ongoing power struggle, only less the sort observed with land stakes during the gold rush, and more the sort people worry about in prison shows on HBO.
Anyhoo, there's a wee bit of uncertainty here, as the community is as a whole undecided on how much of Good Jose Guillen will show up next year. .248/.292/.400 is within one standard deviation, but then so is .290/.358/.490. If it's the former, chances are he's not all the way back from his injuries, and Safeco's power alley is giving him a hard time. If it's the latter, then he's one of the best corner outfielders in franchise history, a legitimate middle-of-the-order lumberjack who takes the pressure to overachieve off of everyone else around him. This one's got a wide range of possible outcomes, and at the moment it's hard to say which is most likely. Me, I'm just pulling for the average, because if everyone in the lineup performs to their 50% projection, we're going to field a heck of an offense.
Captain Handicap tomorrow morning.