2010 Season Review: Jorge Posada

Jorge Posada struggled in 2009 defensively, but despite that the Yankees went into this season thinking that he would be their primary catcher. That was a mistake.

In the end he was only able to catch in 83 games this season, less than any other year except 2008 and his rookie season. Even when he was in there the Yankees would probably have been better off with somebody else, anybody else.

Among catchers with at least 600 innings, Posada had the second worst throwing arm in baseball, only two catchers had allowed more past balls, and only two catchers with a worse fielding percentage. He has also lost the confidence of some of his pitchers, A.J. Burnett and Joba Chamberlain. When it comes to catchers, defensively you can’t get much worse.

Between his poor defense and his inconsistency to stay healthy when on the field the Yankees have decided to make him the permanent DH in 2011. Instead they have committed to going with young, untested, and defensive question mark in Jesus Montero.

One thing about Posada though, he can still rake.

Posada’s wOBA of .357, despite being below his career average, was still ranked sixth in all of baseball among catchers with at least 400 plate appearances. His walk rate, strikeout rate, and is isolated power rate were all along with his career norms which means that a big dropoff in 2011 isn’t expected.

His final 2010 numbers were overall impressive even with the time he missed due to various injuries, the biggest being a foot injury in May/June. He finished with 120 games, 18 homers, 49 runs, 57 RBI’s, a .248 average, and an .811 OPS. Not bad.

Posada still has one year left on a four year deal. He’s expected to be the Yankees full time DH in 2011. As long as he doesn’t have to catch too often that should be fine. His .357 wOBA would rank right in the middle of the pack among DH’s. Along with the rest of the Yankees potent offense that should fit in just fine. After that he’ll probably retire or possibly sign a one-year deal and come back as the 2012 DH.

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4 Responses to 2010 Season Review: Jorge Posada

  1. Mike S. says:

    Hopefully getting off the field and away from catching rejuvenates him a bit.

    My biggest concern is that he only hit .224 from June 1st on.

  2. June was when he had the broken foot. So hopefully after an offseason of rest he comes back healthy.

  3. david k. says:

    My criticism of Posada has always been that he stabs at the ball when he's catching. This takes away a lot of called strikes and it's also distracting to a pitcher who has trouble throwing strikes – like A.J. Burnett. This is also why he has so many passed balls. I don't know whether this bad habit rubbed off on Cervelli but when Cervelli first came up, he seemed to have soft hands. Then later on this season, Cervelli also started stabbing at the ball. Can someone please drill it into the Yankee catcher's heads that they should not stab at the ball? This is a team that is loaded with former catchers at coach and manager but none of their current catchers have soft hands.

    • Hardcore Yankee Fan says:

      I couldn't agree more with this comment. Posada has a rare knack for turning strikes into balls. Most catchers bring outside pitches into the strike zone and Jorge somehow does just the opposite.