Is it just me or does platooning seem to be detrimental to everyone involved: the player, their team and fantasy managers.
Most players who platoon put up worst stats than if they were simply left in the team to start full time. One of the reasons Brian Roberts has given for his early season success is the fact that he does not have to look over his shoulder anymore and can relax and play his game. In most sports, coaches seem to think the best things for players is to let them know they are going to start which builds their confidnece and allows them to go out and play without the uncertainty or fear of what one bad performance entails, (think quaterbacks in the NFL). Of course too many bad performances, like anyone in any job, and you are in trouble, but some certainty is good
With regards to baseball and two of the most high profile platoon situations of the year so far, surely the Phillies would benefit from simply making Utley their everyday starter and the same goes for Pena in Cincinatti. Both currently have better stats than their platoon comrades and both are younger. Both need to be given time to develop, but from what they have already shown, they will!
Ok Pena strikes out a lot, but how is he ever going to cut down his strikes when every at bat could be his last. Even with all the homers, good average, rbis he has this year he can't oust Kearns, so what does Pena have to do? He goes out there and swings for the fences and naturally he strikes out. Give the guy some certainty and he will relax and take some balls, but right now he sees every ball as a his way to becoming a starter. This whole he is better hitting off lefties than righties thing is also stupid, how is he ever really going to get better if he isn't given the chance in a game situation.
The same goes for Utley, except that he is already a more refined player albeit older and with less upside than Pena. Surely both Cinci and Philly would benefit by making a decision and going with it, even if it was just for the month of May, but daily changing, it's helping noone. Make one your starter, send the other down to AAA, that way both are playing daily ball!
Is this just my opinion or does anyone really see the merits in platooning?
I generally agree. I could never understand benching a better hitter just to bat a lefty vs a righty. Plus, you look at some Lefty hitters and out of 350-400 AB, they have 30 AB against LHP. How can a guy possibly hit well seeing only 30 AB? Without being able to get used to a release point from that side it would be hard for that player to hit grooved fastballs.
I can understand giving a guy a start once a week or so and having it depend on the lefty/righty matchup, but to do that everygame is ridiculous. One of your platooners goes down, then what? You have to start the guy who has only faced a LHP 5 times this year? Just digging a hole I feel.
There's also a fielding benefit to having a the same guys playing together. OF's get to know their neighbors range and the LF/RF get to learn when to back off and get out of the CF way for instance. Also this year alone, I've seen a few free stolen bases cuz the platooning 2B or SS didn't know his responsibility in covering the bag.
Seems that managers now days are forgetting it is a 162 game season and feel the need to win every single game at the expense of having a cohesive starting unit come Sep.
It doesn't necessarily suck for fantasy owners. You can platoon and get very good results. Take Clint Barmes for instance. While he is a monster at Coors, he needs a platoon partner on the road. Enter say a Khalil green or someone of that value as a platoon partner, you've mad a very dangerous shortstop. Everyone can afford this on their bench, and it makes a nice tandem. I am currently running one with Garret Atkins and Mike Lowell. It's always important to have a rockie as your platoon half.
Forget the man crush. I drop what I'm doing to watch Zack Greinke pitch.
Joined: 10 Mar 2004
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This is in no way an endorsement of platooning, but someone like Utley who is fairly lousy vs. LHPs, benefits in the .BA department from facing just RHPs.
If we make judgements on players based on stats developed while platooning, it is possible to be mislead from a Fantasy perspective. An Utley batting .280 in a platoon situation may be an Utley batting .265 if he has to face lefties.