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Key Stats: Brian Roberts back injury ended a three-year run of over 100 runs or 30 or more steals. Those numbers don’t go on trees – especially at second base. In fact only one second baseman (Chone Figgins) stole more than 25 bases last season and he had just 62 runs scored. So the key for Roberts not surprisingly in 2011, and based on how 2010 ended, there’s reason for optimism. Roberts had 216 at-bats from July 23rd on. If his numbers were projected over 621 at-bats (his average from 2007 through 2009), he would have had a line of 78 R 12 HR 43 RBI 29 steals and a .287 average.

Skeptics Say: Even before hurting his back, Roberts seemed to be slowing down on the base paths. He went from 50 to 40 to 30 steals, and coming off of missing more than half the season he doesn’t figure to get above 30 this year.

Peer Comparison: Alexei Ramirez’s final line was 83 runs, 18 home runs, 70 RBI, 13 steals and a .282 average. He finished the season ranked 96th in Yahoo. Seeing the full 162 game projection of Roberts last year makes it easy to understand why ranking Roberts at around 95 makes sense.

Given the history of each player it is easy to understand why Roberts is ranked so far ahead of Ramirez on this countdown even though Ramirez plays at a thinner position. I would definitely take the over on 80 runs scored with Roberts batting leadoff for a full season. Taking the over on Alexei scoring 80 runs is a much more difficult call because we don’t really know where he will hit yet. While Alexei will hit a few more home runs, the differential in steals (the more critical stat) will be bigger in Roberts’ favor. Roberts also has the advantage in OPS and a huge advantage in doubles of that matters to your league.

Lineup Outlook: Luke Scott will be a key for the Orioles. His OPS climbed over .900 for the first time in his career last year, so there’s reason to doubt that he can do it again this year. Even if Scott falls back down to where he was in 2008 and 2009, several Orioles are due for improvements including Roberts, newly acquired Mark Reynolds, Nick Markakis, and Adam Jones.

What They’re Saying: Yahoo: #10 Second Baseman & #104 Overall; CBS Sportsline: #11 Second Baseman; Tristan Cockcroft of ESPN.com: #9 Second Baseman; FB 365: #14 Second Baseman; Couch Managers: #103 Overall

Projection: If Roberts is the 11th to 14th second baseman off the board, it’s a steal.
92 R 13 HR 59 RBI 26 SB .280 AVG .805 OPS

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2 Responses to Brian Roberts Player Projection No. 92

  1. Anonymous says:

    IT wasn't just his back that hurt his stats .. he had no real protection at the plate when he was playing. Jones is too immature and I doubt he will grow and Markakis had an off year. AND combined with the Manager the Os had up until Buck what did we expect?

  2. Schruender says:

    Agreed that the lineup led to his downfall too last year. That's why I'm projecting 92 runs versus the 78 he would be on pace for.

    I think the lineup overall will be better especially if they can bring LaRoche in. That would give them three guys (LaRoche, Reynolds, and Scott) that can hit 25+ home runs and two other guys that won't be far behind (Markakis and Jones).

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