Wondering what young players are topping the charts at each position? I was, so I did a short study to see what players are truly brimming with youth and promise.
My parameters were this— 25 years or younger at the writing of this piece, and listed by position. Close races are decided by OPS.
My original creation, the Baby Boomer Award, is handed out for every position. This would be a great tool for drafting a keeper team from scratch, or settling a barroom argument. And since I am not actually shipping out award statuettes to anyone, that’s probably all it is good for—but still, it’s a semi-clever name, and I feel a need to write a column that isn’t full of the WBC or Barry Bonds.
While many of the names are no surprise, it did amaze me at the total lack of young talent at right field in the majors. Nick Swisher barely topped out Alex Rios, who was basically the only other eligible player.
While I normally would not like putting a .236 hitter at the top of a list, Swisher’s power numbers deserved the nod—and I did see his dad, Steve, play at Ohio University, so brownie points for the old alma mater won out.
Interesting enough, no regular DH qualified. Travis Hafner is the youngest of the bunch, but he was born in 1977, so no DH was awarded a spot on the team.
Also, a special mention should go out about Miguel Cabrera. He won left field this year, but is moving to third. The race between he and David Wright should be special, as both will qualify for this list next year, too.
We’ll look at the top young pitchers in a later piece. If you have ideas or comments on who should make that list, send me an email. Feel free to predict who will win each position next year, too.
And so, let me introduce the BDD first year winners of The Baby Boomer Awards:
Mark Texeira: 4/11/1980
.301, 41 doubles, 3 triples, 43 homers
.954 OPS, 144 RBIs, Gold Glove
Jorge Cantu: 1/30/1982
.286, 40 doubles, 1 triple, 28 homers
.808 OPS, 117 RBIs
Jhonny Peralta: 5/28/1982
.292, 35 doubles, 4 triples, 24 homers
.886 OPS, 78 RBIs
David Wright: 12/20/1982
.306, 42 doubles, 1 triple, 27 homers
.911 OPS, 102 RBIs
Miguel Cabrera: 4/18/1983
.323, 43 doubles, 2 triples, 33 homers
.946 OPS, 116 RBIs
Grady Sizemore: 8/2/1982
.289, 37 doubles, 11 triples, 22 homers
.832 OPS, 81 RBIs, 22 steals
Nick Swisher: 11/25/1980
.236, 32 doubles, 1 triple, 21 homers
.768 OPS, 74 RBIs
Be sure and drop an email about who you think will perform well enough to be considered next year. Write in with your favorite Baby Boomer, and we’ll print some of the responses in a future column.