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Classik Yuniesky #3: Scouts’ honor January 26, 2008

Posted by Brad in commentary, stats.
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The most frustrating thing about being a fan of Yuniesky Betancourt is that his amazing defense doesn’t translate into measurable statistics. Most defensive metrics instead show Yuni slightly behind the middle of the pack. Today’s example: David Pinto’s Probabilistic Model of Range. Yuni’s a 99.23, where 100 is average. (Caveat: looking at his Fielder Chart, it looks like his range to his right (third base/left centerfield) is where he’s underperforming. Maybe his range is hurt by having Gold Glover Adrian Beltre at third.)
So when the numbers don’t go your way, what are you to do? Well, if you want to logically analyze the game, you’d say “Well, I guess my vision is wrong; Yuni must be average.” But if you want to blindly devote yourself to Rikimbili, you ignore the numbers, and look elsewhere to have your opinion validated.
That’s where today’s Classik Yuniesky article comes in. Back in 2005, YuBet had the same dilemma: great defense, weak numbers. When he didn’t get much attention in the Gold Glove voting, Conor Glassey did something about it. He scoured the internet for scouts’ and bloggers’ loving assessments of Betancourt. It’s equal parts love letter and ego boost.
You should read the whole thing, but here are some of my favorite praises:

“I played with Vizquel in 1988. Yuni isn’t far behind. They play the game at an easier level.”

For his part, (Jose) Lopez has confidently predicted a Gold Glove in Betancourt’s near future

The glove-obsessed Betancourt had heretofore spent all of his video room time analyzing his defense

Dan Rohn, his manager at Triple A Tacoma, this summer compared Betancourt’s fielding instincts to Ozzie Smith.

Yuniesky Betancourt is the Rolls Royce of defensive shortstops. You’ve seen the rest; now watch the best.

See?  Yuniesky’s great.

Classik Yuniesky #2: The Best of Seattle (for a while)
Classik Yuniesky #1: Yuni goes to English class.

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1. Cars » Classik Yuniesky #3: Scouts’ honor - January 26, 2008

[…] Brad wrote a fantastic post today on “Classik Yuniesky #3: Scoutsâ honor”Here’s ONLY a quick extractYuniesky Betancourt is the Rolls Royce of defensive shortstops. You’ve seen the rest; now watch the best. See? Yuniesky’s great. Classik Yuniesky #2: The Best of Seattle (for a while) Classik Yuniesky #1: Yuni goes to English class. […]


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