If I Hear Cameron’s Name One More Time, I Think I’ll Puke

An article by posted on December 11, 2009

Not looking to knock Mike Cameron who is a god among mere mortals in some circles, and is revered by so many Mets fans, but seriously can we stop the comparisons to Jason Bay already?

Are players no longer to be valued for who they are but instead scrutinized endlessly and compared to players that they have nothing in common with?

Is there nothing in the world of advanced metrics that bodes well for Jason Bay? Something? Anything?

I think some stats enthusiasts are holding out on us…

The two play completely different positions and comparing the two is like comparing a pea to a papaya.

With regard to all this hoopla calling for Mike Cameron to play leftfield for the Mets in 2010, let me make some facts absolutely clear…

He will be 37 years old on Opening Day.

He has batted .243 over the last three seasons.

His strikeout totals: 2009 156 K / 544 AB – 2008 142 K / 444 AB – 2007 160 K / 571 AB

He doesn’t want to play Left Field! ”I feel like I can still play one of the better center fields in the game.”

Cameron has a center fielder’s mentality. Anyone who has ever played the position in high school or college will tell you what I mean by that. In fact, the last time Cameron played a corner outfield position when with the Mets, and he nearly wiped out Carlos Beltran’s and his own career.

In the rush to tear down Jason Bay for his defensive limitations, which are grossly overblown, nobody applies that same criticism toward Cameron’s declining offense in which Bay blows him away head to head.

I think that more and more people would accept advanced metrics if the stats weren’t used so often to strengthen just one side of an argument.

I’m not knocking advanced metrics, but I do find fault with them when they are used to make unfair comparisons.

You want to compare Jason Bay than compare him to other leftfielders like Adam Dunn, Hideki Matsui or last seasons Gary Sheffield. Don’t compare him to a Gold Glove centerfielder and expect me to drop my jaw and exclaim, “Wow, you’re right, Cameron is a thousand times better than Bay in the field.”

And since when do we use one position’s UZR to compare a player at another position? Why don’t we compare Cameron to David Wright while we’re at it, after all didn’t UZR claim he was among the worst third basemen in the league?

Do we really want to ditch Plan A (Jason Bay) for Plan Z (Mike Cameron)?

Come on people… Get your noses out of the books, and keep your eyes on the ball.

About the Author ()

I'm a lifelong Mets fan who loves writing and talking about the Amazins' 24/7. From the Miracle in 1969 to the magic of 1986, and even the near misses in '73 and '00, I've experienced it all - the highs and the lows. I started Mets Merized Online in 2005 to feed my addiction and interact with other passionate Met fans like you. Follow me on Twitter @metsmerized.

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