Goatriders of the Apocalypse

2009 Recap: Sam Fuld

Sam Fuld
I remember when Sam made his 2009 debut for the Cubs. He went 4-for-8 in his first two games with the major league team, with two walks to go along with his pair of doubles. 

Much like the real estate investors of yesteryear, I assumed that, as Fuld's stock quickly rose over the course of those eight at-bats, the trend would continue and he would become an immediate superstar. (That sentence is about 65% true, actually.)

Unfortunately for the Cubs, that did not happen. Sam finished July with strong offensive stats, but was mostly ungood with the bat from there on out. His main problem: he's got even less power than Theriot. Blerg!

Fuld didn't quite have enough at-bats in 2009 to prove his legitimacy as an on-base machine. Last season's .409 on-base percentage came over the course of 115 plate appearances, which just doesn't cut it. For what it's worth, both projections at Fangraphs expect Fuld to post an OBP in the .340 range next year.

Speaking of "not enough data," it's hard to tell exactly how good Fuld is in the field based on existing data. With center field being a premium position, he could possibly justify his powerless bat with outstanding range and glove work. But given his -4.6 runs allowed below average in CF last year according to Fangraphs, it seems unlikely.

With so little data, we've gotta go with our guts on judging what Fuld really is. Which is actually fine, because I think everyone agrees: Fuld is a fourth or fifth outfielder with above average speed and zero pop.

I probably could have started and ended this recap with that last sentence there. But whatever, life's a journey.

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Fulds "gut"

What better season than the 2010 post Hendry debacle to actually find out what Fuld can bring to the team? Whether defense, speed or on base ability he certainly would be a low risk in centerfield (the same for Brad Snyder) considering the options available via free agency. Byrd certainly doesn't shout out PAY ME MILLIONS OF DOLLARS FOR THREE YEARS AND TO HELL WITH YOUR MINOR LEAGUE SYSTEM!! Wait....that's EXACTLY what Hendry heard...evidently.

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