Daniel Murphy’s Glove is Golden
Posted by JD on February 2, 2010
Listen, I understand that there’s a segment of fans who just love Daniel Murphy and think he can do no wrong and that there’s another group diametrically opposed to this position that feels he’s wildly overrated. I like to think that the majority of fans fall somewhere in between, largely because that’s where I find myself. But whatever your thoughts on Murphy, I’d like you to consider this fact: his glove is wildly underrated.
Bill James’ Runs Saved statistic shows that Murphy prevented 11 more runs than the average first baseman last season, second only to some guy named Pujols (and tied with Adrian Gonzalez). His adjusted plus/minus was +14, which tied with Pujols and Kevin Youkilis for best in all of baseball. And UZR/150 disciples should know that he posted a 7.6 last season, which would’ve led all first basemen had he qualified (he only had 850 innings at first).
By any advanced measure Murphy’s glove was superior to his peers at the position. Sure, he was awful in left field, but those memories shouldn’t color your view of his play at first base. Its never ideal to have a player learn a position in the major leagues, but Murphy was pressed into duty due to injuries and impressed. There’s every reason to believe he’ll improve in 2010. While his bat may be inadequate for a first baseman, his glove certainly isn’t.