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The National League’s worst by position

May 5, 2011, 6:20 PM EDT

San Diego Padres v Los Angeles Dodgers Getty Images

Same rules as yesterday’s American League list.

I’m listing the player most responsible for the position’s poor OPS along with the team.

Rockies 3B – 405 (Jose Lopez)
Padres 1B – 478 (Brad Hawpe)
Dodgers 1B – 508 (James Loney)
Pirates SS – 515 (Ronny Cedeno)
Marlins SS – 541 (Hanley Ramirez)
Padres SS – 550 (Jason Bartlett)
Nationals CF – 551 (Rick Ankiel)
Dodgers LF – 568 (Tony Gwynn Jr.)
Astros 2B – 571 (Bill Hall)
Phillies 2B – 573 (Wilson Valdez)
Mets CF – 580 (Angel Pagan)
Marlins 2B – 584 (Omar Infante)
Pirates 3B – 584 (Pedro Alvarez)
Giants 1B – 585 (Aubrey Huff)
Reds 3B – 594 (Scott Rolen)
Dodgers SS – 596 (Jamey Carroll)
Nationals 1B – 597 (Adam LaRoche)
Brewers 3B – 597 (Casey McGehee)
Brewers CF – 598 (Carlos Gomez)
Mets 2B – 603 (Brad Emaus)
D-backs 2B – 613 (Kelly Johnson)
Phillies C – 614 (Carlos Ruiz)
Pirates 1B – 615 (Lyle Overbay)
Brewers RF – 617 (Mark Kotsay)
Phillies LF – 628 (Raul Ibanez)
Padres RF – 633 (Will Venable)
Nationals SS – 636 (Ian Desmond)
Cubs 1B – 636 (Carlos Pena)
Giants SS – 644 (Miguel Tejada)
Dodgers C – 646 (Rod Barajas)
Brewers SS – 646 (Yuniesky Betancourt)

- Astros pitchers currently top all of the above positions with a 650 OPS.

- No Braves or Cardinals on the list.

- The Brewers are the extreme all-or-nothing team here. They’re getting a 1054 OPS from left field, a 967 OPS from first base and a 922 OPS from second base. Their next best is a 652 OPS from catcher.

- It’s pretty incredible to see six first base situations on the list and only two catchers. So far this season, NL catchers have a 747 OPS, while first basemen are at 748. Last year, NL catchers came in at 713, compared to 813 for first basemen. In 2009, it was 710 for catchers and 859 for first basemen.

In the American League this year, catchers are at 671, while first basemen are at 802.

  1. umrguy42 - May 5, 2011 at 6:56 PM

    …I’m still not getting this list, besides some number of the worst OPS offenders?

    • jpeetey - May 5, 2011 at 7:03 PM

      It’s the worst OPS by position for each league followed by the player who’s logged the most at-bats for the team at that position.

  2. Brian Murphy - May 5, 2011 at 7:00 PM

    Only three Padres on this list? That’s at least half as many as I would have suspected.

    • jpeetey - May 5, 2011 at 7:08 PM

      Though we’re division rivals, you have this Dodgers fan’s condolences – I didn’t realize someone else was getting as awful production at first base as we are.

  3. tomemos - May 5, 2011 at 8:03 PM

    Matthew, you didn’t answer this yesterday so I’ll try again: isn’t the accuracy of this ruined by the park effects on OPS?

    • Matthew Pouliot - May 5, 2011 at 8:13 PM

      Sure, but this isn’t exactly a scientific study. It was just a fun little activity. If I were doing it at the end of the season, I’d probably use OPS+ instead.

  4. cleareye1 - May 5, 2011 at 8:36 PM

    What is OPS?

  5. metalhead65 - May 5, 2011 at 9:43 PM

    somebody stop the madness of making up stats to fit who you like as a player. yea rolen is the worst 3rd baseman in the league and on the reds. look at how well they have played without him. oh wait no they have not played well at all without him since he has been injured which may explain why he was playing poorly before they put him on ir. but to suggest he is the worst is just plain stupid and why old timers like me have no use for your stupid new geek stats. basenall was just fine untill you people try to ruin it. why not go back and use those stats and tell us how bad willie mays and ted williams realy were or that the guys on the big red machine were not that good.

    • Jonny 5 - May 5, 2011 at 10:51 PM

      OPS is not a made up stat. It’s stats you know and love, combined showing a better overall picture of batting quality. OPS is- on base percentage + slugging percentage combined. On base percentage is easy to understand, I’m sure you know that. Slugging percentage is a little tougher, But it’s basically a total of bases attained divided by number of total at bats. It’s not perfect, but it gives a pretty good overall picture of ability batting. Hope I was helpful, “old timer”. BTW Willie Mays had a better OPS than all of these guys all the way up until he retired. His last season he posted a .647 OPS, still better than these guys, and he still retired. And Ted Williams was probably the all time OPS king. Lifetime 1.116. Damn he was good.

    • Matthew Pouliot - May 5, 2011 at 11:08 PM

      You got it. The whole entry was a thinly veiled attempt to say that Rolen is garbage. I was hoping it’d go over everyone’s head, but you found me out.

      You must have been saving up that rant for an awfully long time.

  6. Jonny 5 - May 5, 2011 at 10:30 PM

    Raul is trying to work his way off that list, If he keeps up at his current pace he’ll be off next week. Wilson Valdez tries, but he’s more of a defensive option, and that’s what he’s got going for him. He’ll get off the list when Utley gets more AB’s than he has.

  7. sasquash20 - May 5, 2011 at 10:35 PM

    C.Ruiz is one of the most underrated catchers in all of baseball. The guy gets clutch hit after clutch hit. Oh and he plays the position very good, not to mention he calls a great game. Ask any die-hard Phils fan and they will tell you he is a big reason the phils have been good the last 3-4 seasons.

    • bleedgreen - May 6, 2011 at 9:10 AM

      Just ask Roy Halladay, Roy Oswalt and Cole Hamels who, if they had a choice of any catcher in the league, who they’d pick. It’d be Chooch every day of the week and twice on Sunday.

      • jpeetey - May 6, 2011 at 4:27 PM

        How many pitchers would ask for someone other than their catcher to catch their games? How many would not say that their guy “calls a great game”?

    • Jonny 5 - May 6, 2011 at 12:33 PM

      They aren’t saying he’s bad guys, It’s just showing what his production has been so far this season. He hasn’t been batting well.

  8. bicyclee - May 6, 2011 at 10:12 AM

    Here’s the “All-Futility Team” of the lowest entry by position from the list above:

    Rockies 3B – 405 (Jose Lopez)
    Padres 1B – 478 (Brad Hawpe)
    Pirates SS – 515 (Ronny Cedeno)
    Nationals CF – 551 (Rick Ankiel)
    Dodgers LF – 568 (Tony Gwynn Jr.)
    Astros 2B – 571 (Bill Hall)
    Phillies C – 614 (Carlos Ruiz)
    Brewers RF – 617 (Mark Kotsay)

    Unlike the AL version, which featured five positions from just two teams, no team has more than one spot here, which I find remarkable. Are the teams more balanced in the NL? Also, pitchers were not included, so I couldn’t fill out the ninth spot. I assume this was done because the pitcher position would overwhelm everything on this list (and singling out the one with the most at-bats would be pretty unfair, since each pitcher must get less that 20% of the at-bats at that position), although I admit I’m curious which team gets the least amount of offensive production from hurlers.

  9. Ryan Karhut - May 6, 2011 at 2:31 PM

    I know he’s in the AL but Jeter trumps all hahaha
    Derek in Decline?: http://t.co/9Su7bwk

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