J35J wrote:In regards to Beltran and his SB going down. I don't know that I would agree, when he was in KC (I live in KC), he was pretty adamit? about keeping his SB up. He seemed to like his SB numbers over any numbers he had, so unless a manager "makes" him not steal as much he will continue to keep his SB numbers at at least 35-40 IMO. But with that being said I will go with what "I" think is the safer bet and take Pujols!
How much of that could be trying to pad the huge payday that's coming to him this offseason? I'm not saying that was his only motive, but being able to sell youself as a 40-40 guy will do wonders for your bank account. That being said, I don't really see his SB's taking a huge hit unless he goes to somewhere like OAK or a place where SB's don't really figure into the philosophy. I think 35-30ish (HR-SB) is a safe prediction.
And 30 is where I have him too. I never said that he wouldn't steal, but just not as much. If you break down Beltran the hitter and Beltran the base stealer, it makes my reasoning clearer. Beltran the hitter is showing very little signs of becoming a top notch hitter. He may hit 40 HR's, but his average will be down to about .270. If he hits .300, he may hit you 30 HR's. If you look at the plateau of .900 OPS he seems to have reached, you are pretty much looking at Trot Nixon as a hitter. Can he improve as a hitter? Sure, but there have been no signs that he will.
What gives him real value is his SB's. Are there any signs that he will improve in this? No, especially since he has never seen a red light yet in his career. Is there potential that his SB's will drop? Yes, if you consider age, motivation, and the unknown of which team he will end up with. My point is, expecting him to improve his SB totals is pretty baseless and -- at least in my mind -- slippage should be expected.
My last point is that even with Beltran's near 40/40 season, Pujols was still more valuable last season. The question then becomes, who is the most likely to improve in the future. I say Pujols. Then you must ask, who is more likely to slip? Beltran because of the steals is my answer. There is a chance, however, that Beltran does improve as a hitter to offset any slippage in steals if it does occur, but I just don't see any evidence of it. I must say this, I could be wrong, but this is just the way I look at it.