Friday, February 20, 2015

The Higher the Slash Line, the Bigger the Contract

Kordell Stewart was known as Slash in his Pittsburgh Steelers days, for his ability to play quarterback, slash wide receiver, slash maybe another position, I don't know, it was 15 years ago.

Saul Hudson was dubbed "Slash" but his best friend's dad growing up in England; he later became the guitarist for Guns 'N Roses.

More recently, a ballplayer's true measure of offensive value is his slash line. Says Baseball Reference, it's a "short listing of a player's key offensive statistics. In the 1990s, it replaced the former Triple Crown stat usage, as it more aptly describes a player's offensive contributions."

Slash line is batting average, slash, on base percentage, slash, slugging percentage.

So entrenched in the baseball lexicon--why didn't we write about this sooner?--is the slash line that it's even got its own verb form.

Reports Fan Graphs back in 2011:

In 120 plate appearances, [Bobby] Abreu is slashing .271/.417/.375. The season is still young, but out-OBPing a slugging percentage after 80-100 PAs is strange to the eye. 

I bet it would go up further if Abreu was wielding Slash's Gibson Les Paul. 

[ADVERTISEMENT] Fantasy: In Troy We Trust

Derek Jeter is now officially retired, and that means a new era of shortstop is officially upon us. The Yankee captain was not a top five shortstop in the game his last few seasons, but here is a look at the best guys to keep an eye on in fantasy baseball.

Troy Tulowitzki

The Colorado Rockies look awful on paper going into the 2015 season, but they do have the best overall shortstop in the game when healthy. No one knows for sure if they will keep him on the roster or trade him away to try and rebuild the franchise. His ability to be a great all-around hitter and also play above average defense makes him highly sought after.

Ian Desmond

With so many stars on the Washington Nationals, Desmond seems to be overlooked by a lot of fans. He is a very solid all-around player for Washington, and he is a big reason why their World Series favorites. He is in the prime of his career, and he has been mostly durable which factors into fantasy baseball value as well.

Hanley Ramirez

Many people don’t care for the defense Ramirez brings to the table, but he is still a very solid hitter. He should be even better now that he is playing for the Boston Red Sox in a pretty nice ballpark. His homeruns should go up a little bit, and he has a chance to improve in other aspects as well. He is starting to get up there in age a little bit, but he still has at least a couple of years left to play at a high level.

Starlin Castro

A very solid 2014 campaign has Castro feeling very well about the future. This is a shortstop looked at by the Chicago Cubs as a face of the franchise. He is just 25 years of age, but it seems like he has been playing at the MLB level forever. He might just be entering his prime finally, and this has people intrigued.


--Matt Stevens