The San Diego Padres extended All-Star 1B Wil Myers this weekend to the tune of 6-years/$80 million. It was some much-needed good news for San Diego fans, after the not-so-surprising departure of the San Diego Chargers to Los Angeles. On paper, the deal looks to be a solid move for the struggling franchise as they work to lock in a key piece of their future core without dolling out too much cash. On the other hand, the numbers show a Jekyll/Hyde type of difference between the first and second half of Myer’s season.
Overall, Myers had a great 2016 (.259/.336/.461). Playing a position known for power, Myers versatility brought a combination of speed, power, and defense. Unfortunately, the numbers vary significantly between his first and second half, as noted in the table below.
|Metric||First Half||Second Half|
Weirdly enough, the only metric that didn’t see a sharp decline was his BB%, which actually increased by 1.5%. Usually when a player goes through a major slump like this, his BB% tends to be an indicator of performance. As you can see, there is a major difficulty in truly assessing his 2016 season. His first half numbers compare to players like Robinson Cano and Yoenis Cespedes, while his second half numbers compare to Yonder Alonso and Eugenio Suarez.
With that being said, there were consistencies in Myer’s production outside of the batter’s box that helped elevated his game to the next level. For instance, Myers ranked in the Top 6 in the National League in BsR, a measurement that encompasses all aspects of base running, in both the first and second half of the season (he was the #1 ranked 1B). Second, his defense was great. Myers was good for 8 Defensive Runs Saved (DRS) and a +8 UZR. While his bat was up and down all year, his base running and defense were top of the line for all first basemen across the MLB.
As a 3.8 WAR player in 2016, Myer’s was worth anywhere between $19 and $26 million, depending on how you value a win. With an annual dollar value of roughly $13 million in his new deal, he potentially comes at an unbelievable bargain. Myers doesn’t have the track record and has shown signs of being a streaky player with an up-and-down K%, but if he is consistently on his game he should be considered a perennial All-Star for years to come.
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