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Astros: Who Is (was) Better?

It is one of my favorite games. Let's blindly compare the careers of two players and see what we learn. You know there is a lesson to it, so just wait.


Both of these players have played for the Astros. One had a career only 36% as long as the other so for the counting stats below (WAR, defensive WAR, RBI), I am going to use a per 100 games calculation to keep the comparison fair.


So here are the two players:

Age

RBI/100G

OPS

wRC+

WAR/100G

Def WAR/ 100G

Player A

35

31

0.660

86

1.8

14

Player B

36

32

0.633

72

1.3

14.9

So which player would you say was better? You probably think it doesn't really matter Larry. They both aren't good. IF you had to pick one, MOST would pick Player A.


What if I told you they are/ were both catchers? Now maybe their statistics don't look quite as bad.



Stop here and guess who the players are before reading ahead. This is what makes the game fun.




Player A played for seven MLB seasons and never had more than 260 PA in any season. He ended his career with 373 games and 1134 PA at age 28. He was signed to a minor league contract the next season and was released by July. The next year he played in the Mexican League.


Player B is in his 13th MLB season and has been a starter for many if not most of them. His His maximum PA in one season is 471 in the season he won the gold glove. Many of you absolutely LOVE this player with a devotion that some can't understand. Some of you are not prepared to live without him next year. As you probably can figure out, Player B is Martin Maldonado.


So, who is player A that statistically outperforms Maldonado in almost EVERY category I gave you and many more?


That player is Hank Conger who left the MLB after the 2016 season. Conger is STILL a year younger than Maldonado.


What is the point you might ask? Whatever you think of Conger as a viable catcher today (I assume you don't), is exactly where I am at with Maldonado. Peace out.


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