Edgar Renteria

I still wouldn’t give up Andy Marte for Renteria, but he had a good year, offensively at any rate, rebounding from two successive years of decline. On the other hand, it was a year of decline for Renteria, who started out great but finished poorly. As late as July 28, he was hitting .321/.398/.473; he finished at .293/.361/.436, and August (in which he didn’t hit a single homer) and September were by far his worst months. This is what happens when your only backup shortstop is L’il Tony Pena, I guess.

Still, a nice year, and it would be nice if we had an actual backup shortstop to keep Renteria rested. Failing that, it would be a good idea to keep L’il Tony or someone else to come in at the end of games for defense, because Renteria really isn’t an acceptable shortstop any more. He’s reliable enough, but his range was totally inadequate, as it’s been for most of the last five years. While Renteria more than replaced Furcal’s offense, they really missed him on the defensive side.

Renteria is listed at 31 this season, and is probably actually 30. He has 1770 career hits and a pretty established level of 170-175 hits a year, meaning that he would need about seven seasons, a little more, for 3000. If he could stay in the lineup after he’s recognized as no longer a shortstop he might make it, but he doesn’t have the bat for first, so he’s probably done as a regular in a couple of years unless he can add ten homers or so to last year’s total of 15.

Edgar Renteria Statistics – Baseball-Reference.com

53 thoughts on “Edgar Renteria”

  1. But Marte wasn’t going to play SS, and neither will Pena (at least on a regular basis). I like Edgar’s bat. Frankly, he might be the best defensive infielder in 2007 (a little scary), unless LaRoche rights the ship defensively. I think that comment excludes McCann, but maybe not.

  2. I don’t think of Betemit as a better SS than Renteria, and his offense is a notch or two down. Granted, if we could have gotten Baldelli or like for Marte, then I could live with Betemit in place of Renteria. But those stars weren’t aligned a year ago.

  3. The Braves obviously had no trust in Betemit anywhere other than third.

    Wasn’t that plan B last offseason? Let Furcal walk, use the saved money to overpay for Billy Wagner and use Betemit as the full-time shortstop. I wonder how the Braves’ season would have turned out if they had gone that route instead of the costly veteran shortstop and internal options for closer one.

    We’d still have Andy Marte, who I still think will never live up to that #1 overall prospect rating. He could have been flipped for pitching, somewhere.

  4. Until I see Marte do something useful in the Majors, I’m going to hold firm to the idea that giving him up for Renteria was a good move. If he goes All-Star on us, I’ll definitely reevaluate.

    Mac, why is it you complain about Renteria’s range but are willing to have let Betemit play SS for us?

  5. Because Betemit couldn’t have been any worse and he was essentially free. He actually played pretty well at shortstop, not that I had any expectation of that continuing.

  6. Stu, I agree. We traded a prospect for a proven player. At this point Marte is nothing more than a prospect. What if we had traded him for Crisp? How would you feel now

  7. Renteria is an adequate stopgap until one of the young shortstops is ready. I would have preferred to hold onto Marte and Betemit too, but it’s a moot point now.

  8. Wainwright. He’s at least proven he can be a competent arm in the pen. Marte looked good when he came up last year, and I think this might be the year he makes us all cringe. As for Wilson, I still don’t trust him to put up a 200K year and hit like .250/.280/.450. The kid has power for-real, but he doesn’t have excellent plate discipline, and his K-rate is scary-high.

  9. When you compare Renteria’s offensive stats to the other SS’s in the league and in the division…there’s not a huge difference. His OBP was higher than Reyes, Rollins and Ramirez. He finished fairly well behind them in Slugging…but his numbers weren’t low enough to send up red flags.

    The difference between Renteria and the others is…this year wasn’t his career year. He has and established performance level, and he really didn’t exceed that. He could play better in some areas. Reyes played so far above his head I get a nose bleed just thinking about it. He’s still just a shortstop that benefits from the guys behind him despite what Joe Morgan thinks. Rollins had never had the sort of power numbers that he put up in ’06. Ramierez is young and could be a great player, but his major league numbers are better than his minor league numbers. That always seems suspicious to me.

    I know they’re all better defensively and they may all improve and Renteria may still decline, but he’s pretty good for the price. He’s just not that far removed from the best in the league and we just can’t always have the best in the league at every position. With an adequate back up to rest 30 or 31 year old legs…he’ll get the job done for a few more years. He’s a solid piece of the puzzle.

  10. Also, it kills me that with like 20 MIs ready to play at the ML level, only the one with absolutly no value can play SS adequately. Seriously, is there any chance Aybar can play there? It seems like poor planning to have a “super sub” who can’t play short….

  11. The Marte trade isnt looking the disaster it looked at first, but we got two more years for it to sour. I still don’t get the love for Wainwright though. He was valuable as a starter, and had a good post season for the Cardinals as a reliever. But really, unless he turns into Mariano and he is not going to, we had an even trade. And from what I hear, he is going to start this year for the Cards. If he makes it as a good starter, the Cards had the better end of the deal. And FWIW, Wainwright had big time elbow problems the last 2 years.
    Drew gave us an MVP year and was the reason we made the playoffs. Marrero had a good year as a platoon partner. that for burger king ( I let all the inherited runners score but none I put on! ), Marquis and Wainwright

  12. I never said I didn’t like the trade. I just said I’d prefer Wainwright to the other two prospects mentioned.

    And if we’re rostering Chris Woodward, who are we dumping? I guess Pena won’t be on the 25-man, nor will Prado? I sincerely hope we don’t have 3 backup IFs on the roster. If we do, I think that means we dump one of Langerhans/Thorman/Diaz, all of whom I think are valuable bench/platoon players for us to have.

  13. I was kidding about Woodward. I generally agree with your concern about the Braves’ lack of capable back-up shortstops.

  14. 3-4 years ago I would not have made the Marte trade either, but so far it looks pretty good. While it is a bit too early to be certain, it looks to me like Marte’s ceiling has lowered a bit. At best, he is another Bobby Bonilla–which is not a bad thing to be, but I do not see him getting any better than that.

    Of course the other point made above is that Marte was not going to play 3B anyway….

  15. I think everybody agrees that trading Andy Marte was an acceptable decision. The return for Marte is the disagreement. The two scenarios: Renteria at short with Betemit on the bench vs. Betemit at short with the best pitcher Marte can fetch and an extra $6M per year. I’ll take the latter scenario in a heartbeat.

  16. If lil Tony can learn to hit just a little, i will take him on the team. He is great with the glove.

  17. Plus, it wasn’t just Marte for Renteria, it was Marte for Renteria and cash, so that while Renteria may not be able to play short, he certainly hits well for the price. (Around $6M a year, if I remember correctly.)

  18. Why would Tony Pena hit .260? He is a career .253 / .285 / .335 minor league hitter. He is totally worthless with the bat. He’s never even come close to a .700 OPS anywhere.

  19. If Lil Tony is as good as advertised with the glove, I’d probably take .240, but I’d really hope that he’d learn to take a walk (especially since he’d be hitting 8th) and push that obp to over .300. The key is that a player with such a little bat has to do something terrific with the glove, something that creates runs by saving them. Belliard used to do that, as Andruw has done for many years. And of course, Ozzie Smith did it for years until he learned how to hit.

  20. I am actually not averse to starting lil TP on the day the groundballers pitch.
    The runs Renteria would be worth with the bat, he might return in the field.
    Plus as Mac pointed out, he might be better rested and make it through the season without hitting the wall.
    Ofcourse trying to convince a “veteran” that this is not a slight is probably even beyond Cox’s ability

  21. I overheard some Met fans going on today about “their troubles.” What are they going to do about the pitching? Everyone they sign is “50-years-old.” They’ll have to pick up a starter at the trading deadline, etc.

    Then they went into why they should win the division: The Marlins are too young. The Phillies are over-rated.

    No mention of the Braves. I like that.

  22. Look for the Laroche to Pirates to heat up again. They were after Elijah Dukes instead, but he was arrested for MARY J possession. He’s been in trouble a lot and I doubt anyone will take a chance on him right now…

  23. Elijah Dukes has been arrested for everything in the book. I doubt one more arrest would deter any would-be suitors any more than his known history.

  24. I thought the term “MARY J” or “Maryjane” retired with Sgt. Joe Friday.

    BTW, the “Dragnet” episodes from 1967-68 are the greatest.

  25. It seems like the Braves may win both of those. But in this market, it may very well go either way.

  26. Any BPro subscribers out there? I gave it up a few months ago — their 2007 PECOTA forecasts are out, and they teased Francoeur as either a “highlight” or “lowlight”. Which is it??

  27. The guy had a -1.0 VORP last season, so who the hell knows? The way to instantly get better is to up his walks. It’s that simple.

  28. And if ifs and buts were candy and nuts, we’d all have a Merry Christmas. I’d bet heavily on “lowlight,” especially given the gap betwene hype and reality.

    As for Renteria, remember that Chipper insisted on staying a 3B, which left nowhere for Marte to play (except maybe LF). Better to get something for him, and Renteria was a reasonable bet to bounce back. The trade wasn’t a bad one.

    That said, we’re playing Russian roulette with his production for the next two years.

    And I’d bet you the Braves lose the Villareal hearing.

  29. Brian J.,

    Yep, thanks to the stupid-ass weight put on wins. No one understands that when relievers have wins, they’re almost entirely leeched off of the starters due to the consequences.

  30. With Reitsma making over $2 Mil for the Mariners and Sturtze being overpaid at some crazy amount (anything over the minimum is overpaid for him), it would seem that Villareal would have a decent shot at winning his arbitration hearing. I wonder if they try to argue that he also was one of the league leaders in wins at one point. I would advise that they not use this argument!

  31. $850K is really low for a reliever in this market. I think they’ll settle at about the midpoint, but if this goes to the arbitrator I’d make the Vulture the favorite.

  32. ububba,

    Agree about the old Dragnet episodes. They are classic–poor production values, stilted language, right-wing politics. Those shows are classics of camp and I love them, especially seeing Harry Morgan and knowing that he would eventually be Sherman Potter on MASH. What a contrast!

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