I’m pretty sure a lot of our readers got a chance to check out Mark Sheldon’s article on MLB.com about Reds closer Francisco Cordero. And after reading that, I got to wondering about some of the selections made by NL manger Bruce Bochy of the San Francisco Giants and the NL players.
Before I get decide to climb on my soapbox, I would like to direct you to a Coco quote from Sheldon’s article. I think it is extremely telling of how borderline foolish this ASG stuffs gets.
"“I know I don’t have a lot of saves,” Cordero said. “But overall, I have pretty good numbers. Last year, I understood why I didn’t make it. I was leading the league with 24 saves last year, and I didn’t make it because I had a high ERA. Now, because I don’t have enough saves, I’m not on it. I’m disappointed. I’ll just do my job and continue to do what I’m doing, getting people out and trying to make the playoffs.”"
Now, I will assert this even more…
The most telling of Codero’s quote to Sheldon is that of the number of saves Coco had in 2010 relative to his ERA. I constructed a table of stats for the relievers that were named to the NL roster and those of Cordero…
And what I’m about to say could also be an argument for a couple of other NL closers as well.
First, I again point out Cordero’s statement about leading the NL in saves but having a high ERA last season (22 saves, 3.27 ERA and 1.58 WHIP for first half of 2010). Now, look at Brain Wilson’s line in the above table. At the time of these selections, Wilson was tied with Bell (and others) for the NL lead. Yet, Wilson makes the team this season…and Cordero was thumbed last year. It can only be this: a popularity vote or Bochy selected Wilson.
Over Cordero, and maybe even more nonsensical, over Craig Kimbrel of Atlanta.
Add this: Of all “everyday” closers in the NL, Cordero ranks 2nd in ERA, and 1st in BAA (by over 20 points) and 1st in WHIP. Yet, he’s not considered…and disappointed. And Cordero should be disappointed and should be considered.
He should be disappointed for not only being overlooked, but under-appreciated for his 2011 season. In fact, Cordero is a victim of the manner in which his team has performed. He hasn’t gotten the save opportunities (19 in 35 games) because the Reds are usually too far in the lead in order to get a save or the team cannot buy a run to even give Cordero a shot.
Say what you will about Cordero and his time he has spent in a Reds uniform. Talk all you want about his blown saves and those saves where he can literally scare the pee out of us. Bottom line here: he IS a good closer, and more importantly, he’s a “team first” guy. Just look at this quote…
"“I thought I was going to make it but that’s how it is sometimes,” Cordero said. “Sometimes, stuff like that happens. You have to be able to put it behind and continue to do what you’re doing. I’m happy for the three guys that made it. They deserve to be there too.”"
Snubbed? Maybe not. Worthy? Maybe so.