WAR Graph Wednesday: Peralta versus the field

This is going to seem like a follow-up to this morning’s post, and it’s really only partially (if at all) that. It’s as much about illustrating Jhonny Peralta as likely the best option, at least in the short-term – and if past performance is any indicator of future success (it’s not).

Two of the typically three graphs tell the story here, and while they on their own don’t tell the whole story, some quick explanations make this the wisest move in John Mozeliak‘s bag of tricks.

Source: FanGraphsJhonny Peralta, Pete Kozma, Troy Tulowitzki

As one can see, Troy Tulowitzki is the prize here, but knowing Mo and his crew, they exhausted this option and deemed the price (both trade commodities and committed contract dollars) too high. Then there’s Peralta. Stephen Drew carries a draft pick “penalty” and could well be inferior to Peralta for now and kingdom come. Then Elvis Andrus, who in theory has some ceiling left to reach and could put the rest of these guys to shame, but the issue of trade cost again comes up. Jed Lowrie carries trade cost as well, and at this point we’re a solid one to two WAR below Peralta season-to-season. Hi Pete Kozma! Rounding out the bunch is a highly touted, largely unproven, Jurickson Profar. Lots of hot takes about him being the best option, but I can only imagine the conversations Mo and Jon Daniels had about this kid.

So, then, what about recent history?

Source: FanGraphsJhonny Peralta, Pete Kozma, Troy Tulowitzki

Not dancing around the current uproar, I instantly note that Peralta’s season of indiscretion is the worst of itself and the two surrounding it. Doesn’t likely mean much other than typical delta from year to year, but it’s worth noting. And then…

Tulo’s graph follows his injury history, Drew experienced a great rebound with the Red Sox in ’13 but a steep decline in the two previous seasons, Lowrie appears on the upswing (but was trade capital worth it?), Andrus is still INCREDIBLY young – Profar is younger and doesn’t even register on the graph, which leaves Kozma and his defensive and September 2012 fueled spike and the inevitable 2013 decline.

Who was best to fill the shortstop shoes in St. Louis for 2014? When you factor in all of the variables (trade cost, draft pick cost, monetary cost, public relations cost) – hard to argue with Peralta, no?

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