GotowarMissAgnes wrote:In other words, how often does a young player with a few years under his belt post a big BA/SLG spike and then regress to about halfway between that spike and his past level?
You just don't have time enough for me to document how frequently that happens.
Beltre is a good player. Even with that regression, he's among the top players.
But, it's very likely he'll be 100 or so points of OPS below last year (unless he moves to a good hitter's park).
We'll let you do the homework, Agnes. The truth is, most of your present day stars have had a spike in average and slugging because most struggle somewhat when they first come up. When that surge happens comes at different times and at different ages. Hell, it took Bonds until he was 28 until he did it. Don't act like Beltre is any different than most every other present day superstar. Sure, there are exceptions, but since you can name only a few it proves my point. Could Beltre be an exception? Sure, but it isn't the money play to think so.
I agree that Beltre is not different from any other player. I'm afraid that it is you guys who are claiming that Beltre is the exception, not me. Many guys with his history revert to a high 800s to low 900s OPS, not sustaining a 1.000+ OPS.
Santo tops 962 at age 24 and has only one other season in his career over 950
Sierra tops 890 at 23 (before most recent hitting spike) and only two other years over 850.
Glaus 1.008 at age 23, only one other year so far over .900
ARam, 886 at age 23, followed by two down years until last year.
Hidalgo 1.028 at age 25. Just one season over 811 since.
Beltre will post very good numbers---860 is nothing to get upset about from 3B--but I seriously doubt he'll come close to matching last year. The rule is in MY favor, not yours, Erboes. Players who have low performance followed by spikes tend to regress to their mean. Players that have a history of sustained high performance tend to sustain it. Contrast A-Rod or Pujols to Beltre.
Even your comparison of Bonds is wrong-headed, because it fails to take into account his full range of performance. You point to his age 28 season, where his OPS+ was 206. The year before it was 205. The year before that it was 161. The year before that it was 170. 125, 147, 114, 103 in his earliest years.
Beltre's line, on the other hand, looks like this: 74, 100, 116, 93,98,89, 163.
Now, those aren't comparables. One is an essentially good player (he's about average, but that's good for as young as he is), who had a spike and is likely to regress The other is a great player who is likely to continue to be great.