2008 Season Recap: Mark DeRosa
When I came up with the SWP stat (Scrappy, White People for your new peeps), I had guys like Mark DeRosa in mind. He’s not particularly athletic. He doesn’t have a lot of hype or name recognition. He does the little things well but rarely makes highlight plays. He fits in at multiple positions and could often be considered a “grinder”. Not to mention he is a whitey.
But then 2008 happened and had to ruin all of that.
D-Ro hit .285 over 149 games (505 AB’s) with a .376 OBP and 21 dingers. He also had 30 doubles and a .857 OPS.
Marky Mark did fulfill a bit of his natural scrappiness though, as Uncle Lou had him step away from second base and play a little right field (as well as a few other positions) from time to time.
You could consider several different people for the Cubs MVP in 2008, and DeRosa should be one of them. He filled in the gaps when needed, he hit for power, he was clutch at times and the ladies swooned over him. Okay, that last part didn’t help the Cubs too much, but I’m sure it’s a nice ego stroke (among other things).
I remember very early in the Cubs season – during spring training I think – I saw two guys wearing Cubs jerseys around town. The first guy had an authentic Jason Marquis uniform. If that statement was a clue on Jeopardy!, the answer would be: What is the best way to throw away $100 while simultaneously losing the respect of your peers. The other guy, however, was wearing a DeRosa jersey. I thought to myself, “That’s like buying Adam Kennedy’s jersey.” Oh my how I was wrong.
In the wake of arguably his best season as a major leaguer, a lot of Cubs fans are speculating trade deals packing DeRosa with some other players. At 33, one would expect D-Ro’s numbers only to decline from here and it seems the smart move is to deal him while his value is at its highest. But answer me this my friends, where would the Cubs have been last year without him? He might not be a superstar next season (Hell, he might not even be good) but he won’t be a liability. He can fill in when needed and hit practically anywhere in the order.
Of course if it helped bring Jake Peavy or a nice left-handed RF to Chicago then I’d be the first to boot his ass out of town…I mean that in the nicest way possible of course.