What would a Duda/Satin platoon look like at first base?

Maggie Wiggin, Contributor

The most likely scenario for the Mets at first base, going into next season, is some combination of the left-handed Lucas Duda and the right-handed Josh Satin.

Both have pronounced handedness splits, putting up far better numbers against pitchers who throw with the opposite hand, so in order to maximize the production from that position, Terry Collins should use the two players in a relatively strict platoon based on the opposing pitcher.

Lucas Duda 4 (Baron)Using Duda and Satin’s splits against righties and lefties, we can get a good estimate of the production the team can expect from this tandem and see where that ranks among first basemen in baseball right now.

The ratio of right-handed and left-handed pitchers in the league varies a bit from year to year, but 25 percent lefties to 75 percent righties is about average. This means Duda would get about 525 plate appearances and Satin would get 175.

Duda’s line against right-handed pitching in 2013 was .240/.369/.462, good for an .831 OPS. This is close to his career numbers, so it should be a reliable estimate of what we can expect next season.

Satin is harder to pinpoint because he has just 104 plate appearances against lefties for his career. His 2013 line against lefties was extremely good (.317/.404/.476) but it’s a safe assumption he’ll have some regression towards the mean, so just to be conservative, I’ll use his overall line for the season (.279/.376/.405).

When we combine these statistics, assuming Duda has 525 plate appearances to Satin’s 175, we get a line of .250/.371/.448, with an OPS of .819. The pair would combine for 146 hits (including 39 doubles and 25 home runs) and 99 walks. This production would make for a well above-average offensive first baseman, tied with Prince Fielder for 11th best OPS among qualified first basemen in 2013.

Obviously, projections can falter and injuries, decline, bad luck or failure to stick with a strict platoon could all combine to result in first base production falling short of this estimate, but using this arrangement in 2014 gives the team an excellent chance at strong numbers from the position, and it will likely cost the team around $2 million, since Satin is pre-arbitration and Duda is first-year arbitration-eligible. This frees up payroll for upgrades elsewhere on the field.

Platoons are often derided as a way to hide bad players, but the Mets in particular have a history of employing them to get the best out of their players. Both the 1969 and 1986 championship teams featured productive platoons, and while the 2014 Mets still look a long ways away from postseason contention, it’s a good reminder that the technique can and has worked. Both Collins and Sandy Alderson should strongly consider it to maximize first base numbers for a reasonable price-tag.




519 comments
kappyesq
kappyesq

Maggie, I respect your writing since you became a contributor, but I often disagree with your conclusions & this is one of those times. Based upon what we have seen from Lucas Duda up to this point, there is no way you can say that he could ever be a part of an affective platoon. The bigger issue is that platoons generally don't work, especially at positions that are traditionally power & run producing. I know you cited the '69 & '86 Mets Championship Teams as examples where platoons worked, but the lineups on each of those teams was significantly better than the projected 2014 Mets' lineup. A more accurate barometer to gague the success, or lack thereof, of platoons would be to look at the previous 5 World Series Champions. Not a single one of them had a platoon at a power & run producing position. The 1986 & 1969 Mets played 28 & 45 years ago, respectively. You can't compare baseball then to baseball now. It's the same as trying to compare the pre-concussion NFL to the player-protection NFL of today: they're completely different sports. Unless you have significant offensive production from a position that is not traditionally an offensive position (SS, C, 2B, CF), you cannot afford to have a platoon at an offensive position. More importantly, you are overlooking an important element that goes into offensive production & that is lineup stability. I commend you for actually doing research of the Duda v. RHP & Satin v. LHP splits - far too often writers on this site arrive at conclusions their hearts tell them & rarely have statistical evidence to support their position - however it is not taking into account intangible factors that work against platoons. Assuming your 75:25 RHP:LHP ratio is correct (70:30 could be more accurate in the NL East), that means 1 of every 4 games Collins will be forced to put out a new lineup. That prevents either Duda or Satin from putting together a good streak, if they ever reach that point. In my opinion, the Mets need to pick a 1B & stick with him. Whether it is Duda, Davis, Satin, Flores, or an outside piece such as Kendry Morales, it is important the Mets stick with one guy & give him the chance to be productive. I would personally prefer Flores or Morales because Duda is garbage, Davis is overwhelmed in NY & Satin isn't a ML-caliber player. The Mets are 1 bat away from being a good team in 2014 & they can't afford to surrender that bat by forcing a platoon. They need to pick a player, ride with him, and give this lineup some stability - something it hasn't had since 2006.

rustystaub
rustystaub

Let me assure you Flores will get twice as many at bats at first than Satin.  


There are back up shortstops with more power.


Imo, I like Satin as #1 pinch hitter, late inning double switch, some starts at second, third and first in that order.

Max Powers
Max Powers

it would look like garbaage just like Maggie's Posts

MetsFan1962
MetsFan1962

What would a Duda/Satin platoon look like at 1B?  Maggie, Is this a trick question?

Neither play above AAA level and both of them will look like we couldn't find a decent upgrade to play 1B.

dexx
dexx

Why have we not signed Musenori Kawasaki?  He bats LH, plays above average D at SS, and had an OBP of .340+ vs RHP last season.  Pairing him with Tejada at SS would also form a really nice platoon, and he wouldn't cost more than a couple mil/season.  I really think the reason Drew hasn't signed with the Red Sox yet, is because Boras is waiting for us to trade Ike, and get that $4mil off the books, so we can sign Stephen Drew.  If that's the case, then just DFA Ike if we can't trade him, and get Drew in here.  The impact of the upgrade of Drew over Tejada would instantly make us a Wild Card contender.

maxster
maxster

Platoon of Dudu and Satin sounds like 2 marginal minor leaguers starting.  The worst 1b in BB. That's stupid!! Start a highly rated minor leaguer who is raking again in Winter Ball. People say can he play 1st. Duh, can Dudu? He played 3rd base for five years in Minors. He will end up the best fielder and hitter of the three.

dexx
dexx

On a different note, the Giants just DFA'd Eric Surkamp.  He spent last season recovering from TJ surgery but was dominant coming up through the minor leagues.  LHP and 26 years old.  He is definitely worth taking a flyer on.  He could at least be a LH out the bullpen.  I think he had 10.0 k/9 in the minor leagues.

hankypanky
hankypanky

Let Morales and Davis platoon on first while Duda plays the slots in Vegas.

Erin II
Erin II

It would look worse than Michael Baron`s Metsblog head shot.

Daniel Murphy
Daniel Murphy

Can't wait to rub it when Jose Abreu breaks out this year...

BringBackDaveTelghe
BringBackDaveTelghe

I posted this last night, but it's worth repeating.  Here's how much of a fluke Josh Satin was last year...his BABIP vs lefties was .424....which would if he somehow did for an entire season would destroy the modern day record of Rod Carew's .408 and be just 1 point behind Babe Ruth.

This was a guy that had just 1 homer and 10 doubles vs lefties....it's not like he's scalding the ball.  Maggie's analysis concerning Satin is flawed in every way.

Jim Gandolfo
Jim Gandolfo

As long as the IkeMaster107 isn't part of this equation, I am willing to give Satin/Duda platoon a solid try. Please stay away from signing Stephen Drew.  Too much $ for too little player...would rather coach a rebound season from Tejada ( and who backs him up?  Love the Owings kid from AZ, if Sandy could pull that off, it would be NICE! Lagares will hit better...people forget this kid is still really young...learning...but I love his upside. 

dexx
dexx

Duda career OPS +  114

Davis career OPS +  112


Duda is the better hitter period.  He's done this despite playing a position he is not comfortable playing, which Chris Davis said was the number #1 reason for his turnaround, being able to play 1B everyday.  Sounds familiar NO?

Rob O'Rourke
Rob O'Rourke

We will not win 70 games with CYOUNG AND DUDA batting 5-6.. bottom line.. 


The only hope would be that TDA is a beast and can bat 5 if this is the squad we run with .. 

and our 6-7-8 looks like that is as high as any of those three should bat on a team that want to win games.. period. 

6-Duda

7-Cyoung

8-Tejada.. 


Rob O'Rourke
Rob O'Rourke

Sign Morales and Drew. Lets play some ball ..  use Duda as a 1B/DH when Morales needs a day off .. keep Morales healthy play him 135 games use Duda for 27 starts. Ship Ike out..When playing vs AL teams on the road put Duda in as DH adding another 10 starts.. so he gets 35 games and about 150-160ABs.. that should be about right..


Adding Morales gives legitimacy to the 5 spot in this lineup that Duda or Cyoung cannot provide.. why pitch a fast ball to Granderson when two guys up next 5-6 are border line starters on any other team .. Grandy batted between guys like Cano..Tex..Jeter..Iabanez..RMartin and Arod and even Swisher who where all MLB level hitters on any team over the last 10-15 yeats.. 


Come on guys get serious.. Grandy helps Wright but no one helps Grandy ... so yes we helped out #3 hitter get a few more pitches but Grandy is gonna have trouble with two garbage players behind him like Duda and Cyoung.. I hope that TDA becomes a very good hitter and we can make him the 5 hitter cause our options at 5 and 6 look pathetic right now.. Cyoung is a 7 hitter on 80% of the teams in this league right now.. and Duda .. no one even wants him in their lineup .. 


BTW who leads off on this team ?  LOL  Tejada.. so we start out with 1 out every game again ?  good stuff.. .. LAgeras? is that real life?  Rather put Eyj at 2B and Murphy at 1B..atleast we have guys to in the order correctly.. 

1-Eyjr 2B

2-Murphy 1B

3-Wright 3B

4-Grandy LF

5-LOL CYoung? omg.. 

6-TDA?  i hope 5 at this state..

7-Lageras LOL and

8-Tejada SS .. brutalllllllll


Now try this ..a real baseball lineup  omg !!! 


1-eyjr 2B

2-Murphy 1B

3-Wright 3B

4-Grandy LF

5-Morales RF

6-TDA C

7-Cyoung CF

8-Drew Ss


dexx
dexx

Your World Champion Boston Red Sox platooned Johnny Gomes & Daniel Nava in LF, Jose Iglesias & Stephen Drew at SS, and Jared Saltalamacchia & David Ross at C.


The days of having 8 players play 162 games is as ancient as a 3 man rotation and SP going 30-10  with 35  CGs.

bruceinwny
bruceinwny

@AVSNY @metsblog Advanced metrics are kinder to Duda than are traditional stats (and watching games), which says alot about those metrics

nym4lyfe
nym4lyfe

@dexx He'd be a much better backup than Q and he can lead off for us on occasion that could be a good guy to target.

dexx
dexx

@BringBackDaveTelghe BABIP is one of the saber metric stats that makes no sense.  I am a big fan of saber metrics, but if you are in the groove and scaldind line drives all over the place, you will have a higher babip. If you suck as a pitcher and people blast you all over the park everytime you pitch, then you had a high babip because you suck as a pitcher, not because you were unlucky. The babip doesnt always go back to the mean. What was Satins babip vs RHP?

BringBackDaveTelghe
BringBackDaveTelghe

@Rob O'Rourke Don't get hung up on batting order #'s....they don't matter nearly as much as you're making them out.  The most important thing is the guys at the top of the lineup are getting more ABs then the guys at the bottom.  Concentrate your OBP guys in the 1-2-3 spots no matter what it looks like.

Joseph Morgan
Joseph Morgan

@Rob O'Rourke If you had those players, Morales would play 1b, Murphy 2b and EY Jr. in left, and Grandy in RF.

dexx
dexx

@Rob O'Rourke Dude.  Morales is awful at 1B, let alone RF.  If we sign Drew, platoon Duda/Satin, trade Ike for RP, we are a playoff team

nymets17
nymets17

Morales in RF !!!! Smh !!! No way.

dexx
dexx

@bruceinwny@AVSNY@metsblog Yeah.  Didn't the Red Sox hire Bill James?  Havent the Red Sox won 4  WS in the last 10?  Didn't they go something like 100 years without winning a WS until they hired a saber metrics guru?

BringBackDaveTelghe
BringBackDaveTelghe

@dexx @BringBackDaveTelghe It was .342 vs righties.  Also high, but not incredibly crazy.  My point is you can't ignore 100 years of satistical history for 100 abs of Josh Satin!  Has the whole universe gone crazy! Haha.

If you have a .sustained 424 babip you would be hitting lighting bolts every time up like a Bary Bonds type....Satin had 1 hr vs lefties and 10 doubles.  Hardly scalding the ball.

dexx
dexx

@JCOHEN68 @dexx Put Davis in RF & LF with Duda at 1B, and those numbers would be reversed

fedupfan13
fedupfan13

Hey read my response to you below you misunderstood what I was saying about Duda and fielder

Frank D
Frank D

@dexx, every post you make gas a very bold assertion attached to it. You can't just chalk up four series wins to a saber guy. Very dumb

Eric Hayduk
Eric Hayduk

"Sometimes stats are predictive, and other times they are outcomes." Spot on.

dexx
dexx

@Pedro's Rooster@dexx@BringBackDaveTelghe Yeah, I think BABIP was definitely created by someone who has never played the game.  A lot of the other are really good, and are valuable tools for evaluation, and I think game management, but some of them are........just numbers.

dexx
dexx

@BringBackDaveTelghe@dexx No one expects him to hit as well against LHP as he did last season.  Maggie even dropped the numbers she used for Satin to much closer to normal levels.  If he does, he is the best hitter in the majors vs LHP.  Either way, he is really good vs LHP.  What is so hard to understand about that?  He had an .880 OPS vs lefties last season.  If it drop to .800, that's still really good. Ike had an OPS of .406 vs LHP.

Frank D
Frank D

That's a very bold statement. Correlation does nut always mean causation

dexx
dexx

@BringBackDaveTelghe @dexx @Rob O'Rourke Actually, I would love for Drew or Kawasaki to be signed at SS, and leadoff with EY2 batting 2nd to bunt the leadoff over to 2nd base. He would most likely have the same avg bunting everytime.  Kid can fly. Duda 3rd, Wright 4th, Grandy 5th, C. Young 6th, Murphy 7th, TDA 8th. If Lagares and/or Tejada are in the lineup, it changes entirely.