When the Mets first signed Jonathan Villar, I thought “tight!”. I thought it was a great depth move that was made for a cheap $3.5M, even with Luis Guillorme on the roster. On the surface, what we see with Villar is a player that plays multiple positions, swipes a ton of bags, and hit more than 20 HR’s just a couple of years ago.
For anyone that says Villar is a great defender has unfortunately been fooled by a handful of clips in which the man goes all out. I love it, I love the effort, however the metrics just don’t match the little bit of flash we’ve seen in clips.
But then another super utility-man, Marwin Gonzalez signed a one year contract with the Boston Red Sox worth $3M. But what’s the big deal?
The big deal here is in the metrics. Remember, metrics like these are used in all the top clubs across the league.
With Jonathan Villar, the Mets got a player that’s in the bottom of the league when it comes to OAA (Outs Above Average). Not just around the bottom, but Villar is scraping against the bottom of the barrel.
Let’s backtrack a little bit here… So, Villar signed a deal worth $3.5M with added on incentives, so on and so on.
Now let’s take a look at Boston Red Sox’ Marwin Gonzalez’ metrics.
Does Gonzalez sprint as fast as Villar? No. Is he better at just about every other aspect of his game? The metrics tell us yes. He hits the ball harder and he tends to strike out less while also walking more. Not to mention he’s at the top of the league when it comes to OAA.
So while the Mets signed Villar for $3.5M, the Red Sox may have gotten the better player for half-a-mil cheaper. This is obviously that’s something that’s debatable, but the metrics say that Gonzalez is the better player with the better upside in 2021.
Photo from ESPN