That’s What He Said- Dustin Pedroia

In my last post, I looked at a quote from Carlos Silva, in which he attributed some of his success to the abnormally high run support he had been receiving.  I thought that was pretty cool, so I’ve decided to do this more often.  I’ll take a quote from a player, reporter, coach, or whoever and try to prove them right or wrong using statistics.  I hereby dub this group of posts “That’s What He Said” (sorry ladies, I promise there will be a “That’s What She Said” when Eri Yoshida makes it).  

And so, I bring you Dustin Pedroia.  If you follow the Red Sox closely then you’ve probably heard this before, but I think enough time has passed since he said it to evaluate appropriately: 

“David’s fine.  He’s one of our teammates.  It could have been me who hit into a double play.  It happens to everybody.  He’s had 60 at-bats.  A couple of years ago I had 60 at-bats and I was hitting .170 and everybody was ready to kill me too.  What happened?  Laser show.” 


This fantastic quote was uttered following this game on May 4th of this year.  The double play that Pedroia is referring to is the one that David Ortiz hit into in the 8th inning.  The Red Sox rallied for 4 runs that inning to win the game in spite of Ortiz, whose double play appeared to cost Boston the game at the time.  As a side note, if you are new to navigating Baseball-Reference’s box scores, if you follow the link above and scroll to the bottom you will find the play-by-play for the entire game.  
As most fans will recall, Ortiz was not the most popular member of the team just 26 days ago.  Pedroia guessed 60 at-bats, which was pretty close.  Here are Ortiz’s 2010 numbers through May 4th (scroll down to the box after the highlighted games).  Ortiz in fact had 67 at-bats, with just 10 hits, 3 home runs, 6 RBI, and a .149 batting average.  As far as Pedroia goes, a couple of years ago would have to mean 2008, right?  But in 2008, Pedroia sported a .311 batting average through 15 games and 61 at-bats en route to winning the AL MVP Award.  Maybe he meant 2009?  Not likely either, as he was hitting .286 through 15 games and 63 at-bats last year.  
Ah, so he must mean 2007, his rookie season.  Now this begins to make sense.  Through 61 at-bats and 22 games in 2007, Pedroia was hitting just .180 with 11 hits and 3 RBI.  What happened???  Pedroia finished the season hitting .317 and went on to become AL Rookie of the Year.  Also, courtesy of tauntr.com, there is significant photographic evidence that Pedroia did actually provide a laser show by the end of the year.

PedroiaLazers2.gif

I’m actually pretty surprised at how accurate Pedroia was with his own numbers here.  Sure, he said “a couple years” instead of “a few” but he was just .010 off of his actual batting average at the start of his rookie season.  But the comparison to 2010 Big Papi?  Not sure if I buy it.  I think it’s a different kind of worrying when your rookie phenom has a rough first month and when your $12.5 mil veteran DH has an even worse first month for the second consecutive season.  There is one area where Pedroia hit the nail on the head though and that is the one that most people care the most about: 2010 David Ortiz has arrived.  Ortiz enters tonight’s action with a .267 average, 10 home runs, and 28 RBI.  Since Pedroia’s quote, that’s .382 with 7 home runs and 22 RBI.  Sounds like a laser show to me.
To recap, Pedroia nailed the rebirth of Ortiz and was remarkably close on the numbers he cited as well, although I’m not sure if I buy the comparison between his 2007 season and Ortiz’s 2010.  But I’m not going to complain while Ortiz continues to hit the ball like he used to in the good old days.  
I’ve taken a few different angles now on this blog, whether it be looking at a current event’s historical significance, looking at some historical events, or this new quote idea.  Some of the other ideas I’ve had for posts are some introduction to newer statistics (such as WAR, GameScore, or UZR), some more BU baseball history, or some game previews or recaps.  Of course I don’t have time to write all of this at once, so if you feel strongly about any of these or there’s anything else you’d like me to write about then by all means let me know and I would be thrilled to do that first.  
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A Few Thoughts- Lima, Halladay, Silva

This will be kind of a miscellaneous entry since I don’t have a lot of time to do a bunch of research on one topic.  I know it’s been a while since I last posted, but I’ve been busy with my first full week of work and I’ve also started a project related to this blog that hopefully I’ll be able to reveal before too long.  Without further ado…

Keep former Major Leaguer Jose Lima‘s friends and family in your thoughts as he unexpectedly died today from a heart attack at the age of 37.  I best remember him as a member of the Houston Astros, though he also spent time with the Tigers, Royals, Dodgers, and Mets.  His best season came with Houston in 1999 when he was an all-star and finished 4th in Cy Young voting with a 21-10 record and a 3.58 ERA.  He also posted a career high 187 K’s that year.  His most similar players (See here if you don’t know what I mean by this) are Brian Moehler, Eric Milton, and Sidney Ponson.  

The Red Sox Know How to Beat Roy Halladay

The Sox beat Halladay again today, and prove to be the toughest team against him.  Here are his career splits by opponent sorted by most losses (today’s is not included).

I Split W L ▾ W-L% ERA G CG SHO IP H ER HR BB SO WHIP
Boston Red Sox 14 14 .500 4.28 41 6 1 269.1 280 128 29 64 200 1.277
Tampa Bay Rays 12 11 .522 3.67 34 4 0 225.2 236 92 19 47 170 1.254
Texas Rangers 7 7 .500 5.36 20 4 0 124.1 144 74 13 32 98 1.416
New York Yankees 18 6 .750 2.84 37 7 3 247.1 221 78 23 54 190 1.112
Seattle Mariners 6 5 .545 2.51 15 4 3 97.0 92 27 5 19 63 1.144
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 8 5 .615 4.32 16 4 0 108.1 118 52 8 19 83 1.265
Oakland Athletics 6 4 .600 4.54 13 0 0 83.1 92 42 7 35 65 1.524
Chicago White Sox 5 4 .556 3.28 15 2 0 90.2 87 33 7 26 72 1.246
Baltimore Orioles 20 4 .833 2.89 31 1 0 193.0 189 62 16 39 111 1.181
Kansas City Royals 9 3 .750 2.65 14 4 1 102.0 87 30 10 21 61 1.059
San Francisco Giants 0 2 .000 7.23 3 0 0 18.2 25 15 2 5 14 1.607
New York Mets 3 2 .600 4.05 5 1 1 33.1 37 15 4 8 21 1.350
Detroit Tigers 12 2 .857 2.19 16 6 4 119.0 99 29 10 10 73 0.916
Cleveland Indians 6 2 .750 3.52 13 2 1 79.1 72 31 2 33 74 1.324
Chicago Cubs 0 2 .000 3.00 2 0 0 12.0 14 4 1 1 10 1.250
Washington Nationals 6 1 .857 2.43 10 0 0 66.2 56 18 6 10 53 0.990
Pittsburgh Pirates 1 1 .500 1.13 3 1 0 24.0 23 3 0 4 22 1.125
Minnesota Twins 8 1 .889 2.90 13 2 1 87.0 74 28 5 12 70 0.989
Milwaukee Brewers 0 1 .000 6.00 1 0 0 6.0 7 4 1 0 8 1.167
Florida Marlins 1 1 .500 3.71 3 0 0 17.0 21 7 1 2 11 1.353
St. Louis Cardinals 2 0 1.000 1.13 2 1 0 16.0 12 2 1 3 14 0.938
Philadelphia Phillies 0 0 2.45 2 0 0 3.2 2 1 0 1 3 0.818
Los Angeles Dodgers 3 0 1.000 1.50 3 1 0 24.0 15 4 1 6 13 0.875
Houston Astros 1 0 1.000 0.00 1 1 0 9.0 7 0 0 0 8 0.778
Colorado Rockies 1 0 1.000 1.17 2 1 1 15.1 12 2 0 2 8 0.913
Cincinnati Reds 1 0 1.000 3.68 2 0 0 14.2 17 6 2 6 14 1.568
Atlanta Braves 2 0 1.000 0.46 3 1 1 19.2 12 1 1 3 15 0.763
Arizona Diamondbacks 2 0 1.000 3.86 2 0 0 11.2 11 5 0 3 9 1.200
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 5/24/2010.
Carlos Silva is Really Good…?
Carlos Silva has baffled me and opposing hitters thus far, recording his 6th win tonight to improve to 6-0.  He becomes the first Cubs starter to do so since Ken Holtzman in 1967.  When interviewed after the game, Silva said, “It’s because they’ve been scoring a lot of runs…The whole rotation has been really good, but I’ve been getting more run support than anybody else.”  Of course I had to investigate.  Silva, after tonight, has received 6.67 runs of support per start.  The other Cubs starters rank as follows: 
Maybe Silva is on to something!  But there’s no denying that his 3.55 ERA is far and away better than his career mark of 4.66 and his 2009 mark of 8.60.

Marlin Lefties?

MLB Network has just informed me that Chris Coghlan tonight became the first left-handed hitter to homer for the Marlins this season.  In the team’s 36th game?  Ouch.  The reigning NL Rookie of the Year has gotten off to a sluggish start, hitting just .216/.272/.224 in 31 games.  

Aside from Coghlan, this stat is surprisingly unsurprising, as the Marlins don’t really have any other quality lefty bats.  The others (excluding pitchers) to have at bats this season are John Baker, Mike Lamb, and Bryan Petersen.  Petersen is just 1/9 this year, his rookie season.  Baker and Lamb both average just 12 home runs per 162 games over their careers, and they have a combined 107 plate appearances this season.  Their average of 560 plate appearances per 162 games indicates they’ve played about 1/5 of their average season, and they’re due for 2.4 home runs by now.  So maybe it is a little surprising, but not really given that Mike Lamb has been used nearly exclusively as a pinch hitter this year and I don’t think anyone took John Baker in their fantasy draft this year (If you did, I sincerely apologize).  

Perhaps the Marlins could consider signing free agent lefty slugger Carlos Delgado?  This will never happen, but who wouldn’t love to see Delgado don the teal and black one more time?

Jays Take A Walk on the Wild Side

Last night the Red Sox snuck by the Blue Jays by a score of 7-6.  The game was pretty unique in that Toronto’s starter, Brandon Morrow, walked 6 batters in just 1.2 innings of work.  As a team, the Jays surrendered 6 walks in the 2nd inning alone, with the 6th being issued by Josh Roenicke.  The game as a whole doesn’t rank anywhere near the top for most walks surrendered by one team, as they issued no more walks after the 2nd inning.   But Morrow’s 6 walks for one pitcher in a game has been bested only six times this season. All six of them had 7:

 

Rk Player Date Tm Opp Rslt App,Dec IP â–¾ H ER BB SO IBB HBP WP
1 Gil Meche 2010-05-08 KCR TEX L 2-3 CG 8 ,L 8.0 6 3 7 3 0 0 0
2 Mike Leake 2010-04-11 CIN CHC W 3-1 GS-7 6.2 4 1 7 5 0 0 1
3 Derek Lowe 2010-04-10 ATL SFG W 7-2 GS-6 ,W 6.0 4 1 7 4 2 0 0
4 Greg Smith 2010-04-18 COL ATL L 3-4 GS-6 5.1 5 2 7 5 1 0 0
5 Jake Peavy 2010-04-22 CHW TBR L 2-10 GS-5 ,L 4.1 7 7 7 5 0 0 0
6 Oliver Perez 2010-05-09 NYM SFG L 5-6 GS-4 3.1 2 3 7 2 0 1 1
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 5/11/2010.

I’ve sorted by innings pitched in an attempt to truly highlight Morrow’s ineptitude. As you can see, Oliver Perez had the shortest outing of the group at 3.1 innings. Derek Lowe managed to get credit for the win and Gil Meche pitched a complete game. Now here is Morrow’s line from his start last night:

 

Pitching IP H ER BB SO
Brandon Morrow, L (2-3) 1.2 3 6 6 4
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 5/11/2010.

Morrow was able to record just 5 outs, and somehow managed to record 4 of those via strikeout while turning in what was probably the wildest start of the season thus far. In fact, Morrow is one of just 3 players in the years covered by Baseball-Reference’s Play Index (1920-1939, 1952-2010) to start a game, surrender 6 or more walks, and strike out 4 or more batters in 2 innings or less.

 

Rk Player Date Tm Opp Rslt App,Dec IP H ER BB â–¾ SO HR IBB HBP WP
1 Stan Bahnsen 1974-05-19 CHW OAK L 3-8 GS-2 ,L 2.0 2 7 6 4 1 1 0 1
2 Paul Rigdon 2000-08-09 MIL SFG L 3-9 GS-2 ,L 2.0 3 5 6 4 2 0 0 0
3 Brandon Morrow 2010-05-10 TOR BOS L 6-7 GS-2 ,L 1.2 3 6 6 4 0 0 0 0
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 5/11/2010.

I imagine this is a pretty rare feat because the walks clearly display the pitchers’ lack of control while the strikeouts would seem to indicate the opposite. One of Bahnsen’s walks was intentional, but he was the only one of the three to throw a wild pitch. And Rigdon allowed 2 homeruns – ouch. Morrow’s start just may be the best of these three.

AL April All-Stars

For what it’s worth (it’s not worth as much as most fans think it is), here are my American League All-Stars for the month of April.  

C – Joe Mauer (MIN)
Pretty easy choice when you’ve got a once-in-a-generation talent like this guy.  Led the way with a .345 average and a .906 OPS, not numbers that are put up by catchers very often.
Honorable mention: Matt Wieters (BAL), Jorge Posada (NYY)
1B – Miguel Cabrera (DET)
Another familiar face.  Cabrera mashed the opposition, posting a .372/.450/.655 slash line (AVG/OBP/SLG) which is good for a monstrous 1.105 OPS.  Sure, Paul Konerko had 5 more home runs, but I can’t ignore the fact that he hit exactly 100 points less.  
Honorable Mention: Paul Konerko (CWS), Justin Morneau (MIN)
2B – Robinson Cano (NYY)
Cano has a significant edge over the others here, with a .362 average and a .695 slugging percentage.  I wouldn’t call him a regular in terms of all-star discussions, but I can’t say I’m too surprised either given the growth he showed last year.
Honorable Mention: Dustin Pedroia (BOS), Ty Wigginton (BAL)
3B – Evan Longoria (TB)
I would’ve loved nothing more than to give this one to Adrian Beltre, but Longoria’s .624 slugging mark compared to Beltre’s .467 was too convincing.  Longoria closed out the month with a .349 average and 7 home runs.
Honorable Mention: Adrian Beltre (BOS), Miguel Tejada (BAL), Alberto Callaspo (KC)
SS – Derek Jeter (NYY)
He somehow finds a way to do it year in and year out.  Jeter finishes April with a .310 average and 4 homers.  Asdrubal Cabrera doesn’t make the honorable mention here despite his .311 average because I can’t ignore his paltry 1 home run and 4 RBI.  Maybe its because he’s on the Indians, or maybe its because he’s lacking with runners on base.  He hit just .214 with runners in scoring position.
Honorable Mention: Marco Scutaro (BOS), Elvis Andrus (TEX)
OF – Austin Jackson (DET), Vernon Wells (TOR), Nelson Cruz (TEX)
Lots of good options here.  These fast starts, especially those of Jackson and Wells, have been well documented.  Jackson because he’s a rookie who hit .369 in April and Wells because of his notoriously bloated contract, which looks slightly better after his .325/.391/.640 April.  
Honorable Mention: Carl Crawford (TB), Scott Podsednik (CWS), Franklin Gutierrez (SEA)
Check out the balance of power early on in the American League this season.  Of course these are only my choices, but of the eight starters I’ve selected, the division breakdown is as follows: 
East- 4
Central- 3
West- 1
Including the starters and the honorable mentions, the breakdown is:
East- 12
Central- 7
West- 3
The West only has 4 teams compared to 5 in the other two divisions, so if you multiply their representatives by 5/4 the field is leveled, and they still trail 4 – 3 – 1.2 and 12 – 7 – 3.75.  These results are supported by the standings, which show the Yankees challenging the Rays for the East and the best record in baseball, while all four AL West teams struggle in the early going.  Here are the cumulative winning percentages by team through April:
East- .522
Central- .487
West- .489
The West is able to edge the Central here because while they are pretty pathetic, they have no truly terrible teams.  The four clubs finished April with remarkably similar records- 12-12, 12-12, 11-12, and 11-12.  

The 1928 AL MVP Race

A few days ago, on April 29th, John Buck of the Toronto Blue Jays hit 3 home runs in one game, which is a pretty impressive feat.  It is even more impressive that Buck did it while playing catcher.  Since 1920, no catcher has ever homered 4 (or more) times in one game, and Buck marks the 27th time a catcher has homered thrice.  It should be noted that with searches made on Baseball-Reference such as this one, the years 1940-1951 are not covered.  So these 27 games cover the years 1920-1939 and 1952-2010.  The last to do it was Victor Martinez for the Indians in 2004.  His current teammate Jason Varitek is in the club as well, having completed the feat in 2001.  

The second of these 27 games was recorded in 1925 by Hall of Famer Mickey Cochrane, who I am proud to introduce to this blog as a Boston University alum.  The conversation of BU alums in the majors really starts and ends with this guy, but I guess I can’t complain.  His 13 year career includes 2 MVP awards, 2 All-Star games (the first All-Star Game was played when he was 30 years old), and 3 World Series Championships.  Cochrane’s career is an interesting one for a multitude of reasons, so don’t be surprised if you hear his name on this blog again.
The most intriguing part for me is the quality of competition that he managed to beat out both times he came away with the American League MVP Award.  First let’s look at the leading vote-getters the first time he won in 1928:
Voting Results Batting Stats Pitching Stats
Rank ▴ Tm Vote Pts Share G AB R H HR RBI SB BB BA OBP SLG OPS
1 Mickey Cochrane PHA 53.0 83% 131 468 92 137 10 57 7 76 .293 .395 .464 .859
2 Heinie Manush SLB 51.0 80% 154 638 104 241 13 108 16 39 .378 .414 .575 .989
3 Joe Judge WSH 27.0 42% 153 542 78 166 3 93 16 80 .306 .396 .417 .813
3 Tony Lazzeri NYY 27.0 42% 116 404 62 134 10 82 15 43 .332 .397 .535 .932
5 Willie Kamm CHW 15.0 23% 155 552 70 170 1 84 17 73 .308 .391 .411 .802
6 Goose Goslin WSH 13.0 20% 135 456 80 173 17 102 16 48 .379 .442 .614 1.056
6 Earle Combs NYY 13.0 20% 149 626 118 194 7 56 11 77 .310 .387 .463 .850
8 Charlie Gehringer DET 12.0 19% 154 603 108 193 6 74 15 69 .320 .395 .451 .846
9 Buddy Myer BOS 11.0 17% 147 536 78 168 1 44 30 53 .313 .379 .390 .769
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 5/2/2010.

I’ve included the top 9 leading vote-getters, who were all hitters. As you can see, Cochrane barely eked out the victory over Manush- but how did he? Manush dwarfs him in nearly every relevant category, including a batting average that was 85 points higher despite collecting an extra 170 at-bats. I looked to defense for an explanation, and found that Manush posted a .992 fielding percentage in the outfield compared to a league average .966, while Cochrane posted a .966 fielding percentage behind the dish compared to a league average .976. Cochrane’s Athletics finished second in the American League while Manush’s Browns finished 3rd. But is that really enough to justify all his other “shortcomings?” Of course not.

In 1928, the AL MVP award had certain restrictions that are no longer in effect. The award was given to “the baseball player who is of the greatest all-around service to his club” and was voted on by a committee of just eight baseball writers. The three major differences from today were that you could not win if you were a player-manager (which was common then), you could not win if you had won before (this took Lou Gehrig, the 1927 winner among others out of the equation), and each of the eight writers had to vote for one player from each team. The first two rules have no effect on Manush, as he was eligible to win that year. The last sounds promising, but even that offers no help. Manush had no St. Louis Browns worthy of the title to compete with, while Cochrane played with a 41-year old Ty Cobb and a 20-year old Jimmie Foxx among other future Hall of Famers. Foxx even finished 11th in the voting, while none of Manush’s teammates finished in the top 25.

All this, and still no mention of Goose Goslin, who finished 6th in the voting. A quick glance at the table above, and it appears that he finished just 6 RBI short of the Triple Crown. This was not actually the case, since some ineligible players had him beat in home runs and RBI, although he did lead the league in batting average. He also finished the season with a Ruthian OPS of 1.056 (actually, Ruth’s OPS that year was 1.172, but he was ineligible to be MVP by virtue of winning the award in 1923). How did Goslin get overlooked? Maybe the teammate argument actually holds some weight here, since his fellow Washington Senator Joe Judge finished ahead of him at 3rd place.

I apologize if this post is unsatisfying, because I really have no answer to the question I have raised. I can’t find any justification for Cochrane winning this award over Manush or Goslin, unless the voters thought that he brought enough intangibles to the table to make up for his lack of statistical clout. Nevertheless, the 1928 AL MVP was the first awarded to a BU alum, and the second would come in 1934, also to Cochrane. This post is longer than I thought it would be so I’ll wrap up, but I would like to take a look at that MVP race eventually as well. And in case you are a particularly astute reader and you just noticed that Cochrane won twice despite there being a rule against it, the rules for the award were restructured in 1931 and have remained virtually the same since then. In conclusion, you can ask your friends and family the trivia question, “Who won the AL MVP Award in 1929 and 1930?” and then mock them as they attempt to answer before you inform them that no one did, because they discontinued it after 1928 due to the ridiculous rules and didn’t get it going again until 1931. Thanks for reading, and if you like the blog or if you have anything at all to say, I love comments and e-mails.

Close Calls & DMac

Before tonight’s 2-0 victory over Toronto, check out the last time the Red Sox won by more than 1 run:

Gm# Date Tm Opp R RA W-L GB Win Loss Save
8 Wednesday, Apr 14 boxscore BOS MIN W 6 3 4-4 1.5 Lackey Slowey Papelbon
9 Thursday, Apr 15 boxscore BOS MIN L 0 8 4-5 2.5 Liriano Wakefield
10 Friday, Apr 16 boxscore BOS TBR L 1 3 4-6 3.0 Cormier Delcarmen Soriano
11 Saturday, Apr 17 boxscore BOS TBR L 5 6 4-7 4.0 Shields Buchholz Soriano
12 Sunday, Apr 18 boxscore BOS TBR L 1 7 4-8 5.0 Garza Lester
13 Monday, Apr 19 boxscore BOS TBR L 2 8 4-9 6.0 Niemann Lackey
14 Tuesday, Apr 20 boxscore BOS TEX W 7 6 5-9 5.5 Papelbon Francisco
15 Wednesday, Apr 21 boxscore BOS TEX W 8 7 6-9 5.5 Okajima Nippert
16 Thursday, Apr 22 boxscore BOS TEX L 0 3 6-10 6.0 Wilson Buchholz Oliver
17 Friday, Apr 23 boxscore BOS BAL W 4 3 7-10 5.0 Delcarmen Albers Papelbon
18 Saturday, Apr 24 boxscore BOS BAL W 7 6 8-10 5.0 Lackey Albers Papelbon
19 Sunday, Apr 25 boxscore BOS BAL L 6 7 8-11 6.0 Johnson Atchison Meredith
20 Monday, Apr 26 boxscore BOS TOR W 13 12 9-11 5.5 Schoeneweis Camp Papelbon
21 Tuesday, Apr 27 boxscore BOS TOR W 2 1 10-11 5.5 Buchholz Downs Ramirez
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 4/29/2010.

That’s right, not since April 14th, 2 weeks ago. The BoSox may have gotten back to .500 with tonight’s win, which is always good to see, but the fact of the matter is they still have a lot of work left to do if they want to contend this season. I am encouraged by the way Clay Buchholz has been pitching and by Jon Lester‘s last two starts. If John Lackey and Josh Beckett can pick it up, then the rotation will be in good shape even if #5 remains a mystery with Tim Wakefield and Daisuke Matsuzaka. Don’t look now, but Lester hasn’t allowed a run in his last 13.1 innings.

One of the more interesting and surprising bright spots for the Sox thus far has been Darnell McDonald. Carrying a .286 average and 2 home runs through just 25 plate appearances into tonight’s contest, many fans are wondering where the heck this guy came from. That’s where I come in.

McDonald is 31 years old and in his fourth major league season. He made his major league debut back in 2004 at the tender age of 25 with the Baltimore Orioles, who selected him with the 26th overall pick in the 1997 amateur draft. Since then he’s been all over the majors and the minors, logging just 147 big league at-bats coming into this season. During that time he posted a below average slash line of .231/.276/.333.

So where is this new found success coming from? Your guess is as good as mine, but I can tell you one thing. He’s not the young prospect that some interpret him as, and for this reason he doesn’t have a legitimate chance of staying with the team long term. He may be a fan favorite already, but something’s gotta give when both Mike Cameron and Jacoby Ellsbury (remember them?) return from the DL. The team can’t afford to carry more than four outfielders at a time, and there’s just no way that McDonald can play himself ahead of Ellsbury, Cameron, J.D. Drew, or Jeremy Hermida. Thanks for the memories DMac, but I’m afraid your time is almost up.