A lot of Dodger Fans have written this guy off for 2018 and have traded him away already… except that he is still with the Dodgers. There is perhaps no more polarizing Dodger than Yasmani Grandal. He was acquired by the Andrew Friedman front office who traded the fan favorite (at the time), Matt Kemp for him. I am certain that is part of the reason Yasmani is so vilified. Well, that and the fact that he leads MLB in passed balls.
Of course, he led all of MLB in Total Chances, Put Outs, was 4th in Range Factor and Top 10 in fielding percentage, was a Top 3 Pitch Framer and, yes, he did lead baseball in Passed Balls. Look, Yasmani had what I think was an off year with the bat. His batting average went up while his OB% went down. His strikeouts went up and his walks went down. Austin Barnes took his job in the playoffs and a lot of fans are convinced he will keep it. He won’t!
IN 2016, Yasmai Grandal was Top 3 in OPS for Catchers (.816) … finishing ahead of Buster Posey, but slipped to a .767 OPS in 2017. Austin Barnes had a .895 OPS, but in over 200 fewer at-bats. I like Austin Barnes, but Grandal had 438 At-Bats while Barnes had 218. Barnes is still unproven over the long haul in many respects. I also happen to think that Yasmani can play a huge part in this teams’ success.
Having a child during the World Series might have been an issue, maybe he was injured… who knows, but I do know this: Yasmani is an elite catcher and can throw out runners. I would like to see him reduce his passed balls, but Yasmani was #1 in all of baseball in Cather’s ERA (CERA) in 2017. So, evidently, the passed balls didn’t hurt too much. Add in the fact that Yasmani has 35 HR potential to go with a .350 OB% and .850 OPS potential, and he has all the motivation in the world to do that as he is in his walk year. A great season means a big payday for him.
If Yasmani hits 35 big flys and puts up an .850 OPS to go with his elite catching ability, we have a secret weapon that could be a winner, winner, chicken dinner! Austin Barnes will get 300 AB’s while Yasmani will get 400 and I think the combination will be the best in baseball.
Write this down: Yasmani Grandal is Secret Weapon #3!
Other Dodger News
- As usual, JonSoo Hoo has some absolutely wonderful photos of Thursday’s Spring Training Sights. If you have ever been to Camelback Ranch, it takes you there in spirit
- Tom Koehler looks to pull a Blanton or Morrow. I’d like to say he can be Secret Weapon, but only time will tell. FAZ and Honeycutt think he can.
- It’s nice to see old friend Kirk Gibson and the Dodgers mend fences and he will throw out the first pitch on Opening Day while the Dodgers help him raise money for Parkinson’s Research.
- Matt Kemp for Ryan Braun is an idea floated HERE. Ideas like this demonstrate just how bad drugs are! The brain damage is evidently severe.
- What if Adam Liberatore is healthy?
Man, I really miss Spring Training. I was at Camelback Ranch the first 5 years and now I have missed 5 years. March is a really busy month for me. I have several conventions to attend: Denver, Nashville, Las Vegas and San Francisco. Then, there is World Water Day (March 22) where I am going to Haiti with my two sons to shoot a video for The Gift Of Water. My oldest son is First Camera on many TV Shows (Saturday Night Live, Blue Bloods, etc.) and shoots major motion pictures.
He is currently shooting a motion picture in Philadelphia for M. Night Shyamalan, but a couple of years ago he shot the National Geographic “Story of God” with Morgan Freeman. We are hoping that Morgan will narrate the of Gift of Water video…. to be continued!