Tuesday, November 02, 2010

The Twisted Career of Edgar Renteria

Edgar Renteria has had one of the weirdest careers in history. He's played for six different teams. He's won two gold gloves, had one or two other good fielding years and has not been very good all the other years. He has finished a season over 100 OPS+ five times and has finished under 85 five times. He was one of the best shortstops the Cardinals ever had and is the worst shortstop the Red Sox ever had. He has finished in the top 20 twice for MVP and been an All Star five times. There have been other years where you would never, ever write his name on an All Star ballot. He's led the league in being thrown out stealing (1998) and he's led the league in sacrifice bunts (1997). Both of those distinctions are a baseball analyst's nightmare. But now, eighteen years after he was signed by the Marlins as a 16 year old kid from Columbia and in his fifteenth season--a season to forget mostly--he is now the World Series MVP.

The Giants have paid Edgar Renteria $18 million for the last two years of his services. During the two seasons, he's probably been worth about $2.5 million combined. Up until now, it's probably been their worst deal this side of Barry Zito. But in light of the World Series he just had against the Texas Rangers with a slash line of .412/.444/.765 including two game winning homers and six RBIs and six Runs Scored in just five games, it would be pretty safe to say that the Giants are happy with their investment. But make no mistake about it, no matter how much Bruce Bochy gushed over him at the press conference, Renteria will probably be looking for work next season and he may not get the $8-10 million he's been making for the last six seasons.

But judging by his history, someone will take a chance on him. He'll be playing somewhere. He was a part of the glories of the Florida Marlins' franchise and now the gloriest moment of San Francisco Giants' history. He's created a legend in that city that will never die as long as there are baseball fans. All of which is probably the most improbable of all of the things that have happened this 2010 baseball season.

1 comment:

bobook said...

Living in Florida I've had an appreciation for Renteria. He was terrific on that Marlins squad. Being a Yankees fan my appreciation for him increased when he sucked on the Red Sox... Now joins Numbers 4, 5, and 8 of the NYY as the only players to twice get Series winning hits. Don't see him as a HoF'er (believe standards should be only for the truly great) but a solid major leaguer with a terrific career and now a member to a terrific trivia question.