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Thread: Lyle Overbay... Possibly One Of The Best Offseason Steals????

      
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    Default Lyle Overbay... Possibly One Of The Best Offseason Steals????

    Pirates fan: Could Lyle Overbay be one of the best steals of the off-season?

    By Lee Andrew Henderson, Yahoo! Contributor Network 10 hours, 6 minutes ago

    Many of my family members can remember a time growing up in Pittsburgh when the Pirates signed Willie Stargell as a free agent, quite possibly the greatest signing in Pittsburgh Pirates history. Unfortunately for current Pittsburgh Pirates fans, like myself, we don't see huge signings anymore and have to look for the positives in some of the smaller deals.

    One of those small deals is a one-year, $5 million signing of Lyle Overbay(notes) that could end up being one of the biggest steals of the offseason.

    Overbay will start at first base for the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2011 and though nobody expects the Pirates to flirt with a winning season, Overbay will be a key part of what the Pirates are trying to do. Overbay's role will be as a veteran contributor that will consistently perform while some of the younger Pirates players, like Pedro Alvarez(notes) and Jose Tabata(notes), try to find their way.


    Overbay is off to a good start so far this spring. In his first six outings the Pirates first baseman is batting .375 with a .375 OBP and .625 SLG. Overbay leads the team in runs, is second in the team in total bases and also contributed a few RBIs.

    Obviously nobody expects Lyle Overbay to be Ryan Howard(notes) or Prince Fielder(notes), but there were many Major League Baseball clubs looking for a second or third level first baseman, and out of those clubs the Pirates probably got the best steal.

    The St. Louis Cardinals are one of the best organizations in Major League Baseball and they spent $8 million on Lance Berkman(notes). If Berkman reverts back to 2008 then he will undoubtedly be one of the best signings of the off-season, but if Berkman plays like he did in 2010 then the Cardinals will not get a player worth $8 million.

    Another player that will be making $8 million in 2011 is Adam LaRoche(notes). The Nationals signed LaRoche for two years, $16 million after their signing of outfielder Jayson Werth(notes). The Giants also decided to give Aubrey Huff(notes) $11 million for each of the next two seasons.

    Meanwhile, the Pirates decided they would sign Lyle Overbay for just $5 million.
    Last season, Overbay scored almost 80 runs for the Toronto Blue Jays, hit 20 home runs, hit almost 40 doubles and knocked in close to 70 runs. Berkman, as a member of the Astros and Yankees, only managed 48 runs, 14 home runs, 23 doubles and 49 RBI. Huff did score 100 runs and knocked in 86 RBI last season but both were career highs at the age of 33. The Giants clearly overpaid for a player that is normally no better than Overbay. LaRoche did knock in 100 RBI last season and regularly hits 25 home runs and 80 RBI per season.

    If it were up to me, the Pirates never would have let LaRoche go in 2009, but Overbay will probably only be slightly worse than LaRoche and will cost the Pirates $3 million less.

    Sources:

    Aaron Gleeman, Pirates sign first baseman Lyle Overbay to one-year contract, Hardball Talk

    All stats were found at Baseball-Reference.com

    http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/news?slug=ycn-8011094
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    Default Re: Lyle Overbay... Possibly One Of The Best Offseason Steals????

    I'd have to really look at numbers and such but on the surface and such I don't see "steal" and "Overbay" in the same sentence. I believe that he will help fill 1 of the holes we had (1B and RF) band provide a modest at best upgrade over what we had for 1B last season minus Garrett Jones who moves to a RF platoon. ... but steal is a big pretty stretch.

    There was already some heavy griping and moaning by a couple of people over the Overbay signing, one person comparing it (wrongly so) to the Jeromy Burnitz signing, others believing that Steve Pearce should be given yet another shot to fulfill the 1B spot. There's the question and doubts of whether Burnitz would be used in a platoon with Pearce which could produce better results than Overbay alone, considering the lefty and righty splits between him and Steve Pearce.

    Have it.

    In the meantime, when i have time, I'll look at stats. This is value related in terms of money for the production which adds a nice spin on it.
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    Default Re: Lyle Overbay... Possibly One Of The Best Offseason Steals????

    I'm assuming that a Platoon role for Pearce isn't happening as they are trying to prime him for a utility role for the corner IF spots. That could change and for Pearce hopefully his spring training results do as well in the batters box...

    ------------------------

    Pearce trying to corner (infield) market on role

    By Evan Drellich / MLB.com | 03/08/11 7:07 PM EST

    FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Hitting in the No. 3 spot in the lineup in a back-field "B" game on Tuesday, Steve Pearce's first trip to the plate saw him work the count against Minnesota's Kevin Slowey. He took pitches and he fouled pitches.

    The result was a weak popup to second.

    "I feel like that's been the story of my Spring Training," said Pearce, who turns 28 in April. "It's going to come with more reps, the more comfortable I get in the box."

    No, the start hasn't been stellar. Pearce is 3-for-17 with a pair of doubles, six strikeouts and one walk this spring. The bottom of the inning, though, brought some encouragement: a diving play toward the line and a good throw to first for the out.

    Pearce has all of five career appearances at third base -- all in the Minors -- since being drafted in 2005. Want to break camp with the team? Show versatility.

    Pearce, a first baseman during his pro career, is trying to oblige.

    "He made a [heckuva] play," said right-hander Brad Lincoln, who was on the hill and having a rough inning. "It probably did save me a run."

    Pearce's nowhere close to alone in being asked to do it, but it's a hard task nonetheless: Come to the park without knowing if you're in the lineup, play multiple positions, get ready for the season and all the while prove you belong on the Major League team.

    A trip to the Majors in 2011 would make Pearce a five-year big leaguer. Drafted by Pittsburgh, he's spent his whole career in the organization, watching the likes of Garrett Jones and Andrew McCutchen rise up the ranks.

    Pearce, though, has never stuck. The most big league games he's played in a season was 60 in 2009. Last year, he played 15. He's been on the shuttle, so to speak.

    "It probably would be a lot easier, it's tough to go up there and then sit and play and sit and play," Pearce said. "It's kind of hard to get in a rhythm."

    The hope for Pearce, as it is for Garrett Atkins, Andy Marte and Josh Fields, is to be the Pirates' corner-utility infielder. The competition is tough: Marte homered in the "B" game on Tuesday, and Fields stabbed a line drive at third to end a 5-2 win over the Twins in the "A" game.

    Pearce does know full well of the fray he's in.

    "We brought guys in, and we brought four or five guys in and they're all competing for that one spot," Pearce said. "Of course, we know it's out there, but you want to control how you play. You can't control what other people think. You just give your best and hopefully you open some eyes."

    What Pearce believes could help separate him, though, is the familiarity he has with the Pirates he came up with. They know his face in the clubhouse, and they can talk to him.

    "I know all these guys, I would love to be with these guys," Pearce said. "I hope that would maybe play a factor into the decision."

    Jones, Pearce's teammate and friend, said as much.

    "If you feel close on and off the field, it helps the team chemistry," the right fielder said, "and you can help a good friend out more when you see him hit or if he's doing something differently."

    There is a reality, though, and it tends to show up in the box score. Manager Clint Hurdle pointed to it when asked if chemistry would be a consideration: It's about production.

    "Intangibles carry some weight," Hurdle said. "But you want to project the best skill set, who's going to help the club the best. There's nobody here who doesn't like Steve Pearce."

    So there's not much left for Pearce to do but find his stroke. After one hit -- a single -- in four at-bats in the "B" game, Pearce didn't think he'd be asked to pinch-hit in the fifth inning of Tuesday's "A" game.

    "I'm like, 'What?'" he said when he was told to grab a bat.

    Hurdle said afterward that a pinch-hit role is one Pearce could fill if he makes the team. Thing is, Pearce didn't even get a real chance to show anything. Ronny Cedeno was thrown out at third to end the inning, ending Pearce's day.

    That's the lot of a player trying to make the last spot on a roster.

    "You got to make the most of the opportunities," Pearce said. "It would be definitely an advantage for me to go up there and get all those at-bats and see what I could do. But right now, my role is just a utility guy. Playing off the bench."

    http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20110308&content_id=16864736&vkey=news_pit&c_id=pit&partnerId=rss_pit
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    Default Re: Lyle Overbay... Possibly One Of The Best Offseason Steals????

    Quote Originally Posted by Kipper View Post
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    Many of my family members can remember a time growing up in Pittsburgh when the Pirates signed Willie Stargell as a free agent, quite possibly the greatest signing in Pittsburgh Pirates history. Unfortunately for current Pittsburgh Pirates fans, like myself, we don't see huge signings anymore and have to look for the positives in some of the smaller deals.
    I doubt anyone remembers when the Pirates signed Stargell as a free agent. Free agency didn't even exist until Stargell has already played 12 full seasons. I guess technically they signed him as a free agent in 1958 since there was no draft, but I doubt it was even mentioned in the papers I'm trying to come up with a name that would make more sense there, but I'm struggling.

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    Default Re: Lyle Overbay... Possibly One Of The Best Offseason Steals????

    Quote Originally Posted by jnn123 View Post
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    I doubt anyone remembers when the Pirates signed Stargell as a free agent. Free agency didn't even exist until Stargell has already played 12 full seasons. I guess technically they signed him as a free agent in 1958 since there was no draft, but I doubt it was even mentioned in the papers I'm trying to come up with a name that would make more sense there, but I'm struggling.
    Im trying to think too. I can only think of generic terms like "unsigned player" which would be "guy on the street"
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    Default Re: Lyle Overbay... Possibly One Of The Best Offseason Steals????

    Overbay will be great against RHP but should never start at all against LHP. His OPS in 2008 and 2009 vs. LHP was around .534 when his AB's were limited against lefties. Last year he played more against lefties and ended up with a .700 OPS against them. Against righties he was as high as .905 OPS in 2009 even though he slumped back to .781 last year.

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    Default Re: Lyle Overbay... Possibly One Of The Best Offseason Steals????

    Quote Originally Posted by Shaker100 View Post
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    Overbay will be great against RHP but should never start at all against LHP. His OPS in 2008 and 2009 vs. LHP was around .534 when his AB's were limited against lefties. Last year he played more against lefties and ended up with a .700 OPS against them. Against righties he was as high as .905 OPS in 2009 even though he slumped back to .781 last year.
    His numbers vs. lefties have definitely been terrible the last 3 years. I was originally "so-so" on the platoon idea with him but I've really warmed up to the idea and considering how he's done in his recent 3 seasons against lefties, support the idea.

    There's been a true advertisement of the RF platoon and nothing at 1B suggesting to me there won't be one. It doesn't mean they couldn't change their minds early in the season if Overbay struggles against lefties (as he probably should) and Pearce is there on the bench.

    With Overbay, is that prior to 2008, he hit lefties well, especially for a left handed hitter, he hit them well. not with as much power as against a righty but his BA was high. The question I suppose is why or how did his production against lefties fall of a cliff? Is it the simple answer of age? Is it that hitch in his swing the Pirates mentioned they were working on? Do the Pirates believe that they can get Overbay back to his Pre-2008 production against lefties?
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    Default Re: Lyle Overbay... Possibly One Of The Best Offseason Steals????

    Overbay could end up being a steal if he matches his numbers from last season. Playing in PNC should benefit him being a left handed hitter and help him hit anywhere from 23-27 homers. He will have a better overall season than both Adam La and Berkman. Mark my words......you heard it here first AND he will be with the Pirated all season and next.
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    Default Re: Lyle Overbay... Possibly One Of The Best Offseason Steals????

    Quote Originally Posted by Kipper View Post
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    If it were up to me, the Pirates never would have let LaRoche go in 2009, but Overbay will probably only be slightly worse than LaRoche and will cost the Pirates $3 million less.
    This is the statement that caught my eye. Any contribution LaRoche made occurred in the second half of the season when the Pirates were already 20 games under .500 and all but eliminated from contention. They had no choice but to try someone else at 1B.

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    Default Re: Lyle Overbay... Possibly One Of The Best Offseason Steals????

    Quote Originally Posted by exNCite View Post
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    This is the statement that caught my eye. Any contribution LaRoche made occurred in the second half of the season when the Pirates were already 20 games under .500 and all but eliminated from contention. They had no choice but to try someone else at 1B.
    LaRoche had such slow starts he inspired my Tavern name.
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    Default Re: Lyle Overbay... Possibly One Of The Best Offseason Steals????

    Hopefully, Overbay will fetch more at the deadline than Laroche did.

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    Default Re: Lyle Overbay... Possibly One Of The Best Offseason Steals????

    Quote Originally Posted by tocchet92 View Post
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    Hopefully, Overbay will fetch more at the deadline than Laroche did.
    Well considering what they got in return.....Argenis Diaz and Hunter Strickland....I would hope so.

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    Default Re: Lyle Overbay... Possibly One Of The Best Offseason Steals????

    Quote Originally Posted by Waiting for LaRoche View Post
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    LaRoche had such slow starts he inspired my Tavern name.
    I thought you might have been referring to Andy...in which case, I'd have recommended to stop waiting!!

    LOL!!

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    Default Re: Lyle Overbay... Possibly One Of The Best Offseason Steals????

    Quote Originally Posted by 81omar View Post
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    I thought you might have been referring to Andy...in which case, I'd have recommended to stop waiting!!

    LOL!!
    It doesn't necessarily mean anything, but the A's front office really thinks they have something in Andy, and his early spring performance is backing that up. He's reached base 12 times in 25 PA and has 3 HRs and 2 doubles so far. They think he can handle 2B well, and have given him some work at SS as well. Don't be surprised if he makes the team.

    If there's one guy who I'd like to see succeed it's Andy LaRoche. He's possibly the nicest human being in the entire world.

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    Default Re: Lyle Overbay... Possibly One Of The Best Offseason Steals????

    Quote Originally Posted by jnn123 View Post
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    It doesn't necessarily mean anything, but the A's front office really thinks they have something in Andy, and his early spring performance is backing that up. He's reached base 12 times in 25 PA and has 3 HRs and 2 doubles so far. They think he can handle 2B well, and have given him some work at SS as well. Don't be surprised if he makes the team.

    If there's one guy who I'd like to see succeed it's Andy LaRoche. He's possibly the nicest human being in the entire world.
    I wish Andy well and hope he kicks ***, even though the trolls will spin it to blame Nutting for trading him because would have became a star and would have cost big bucks. I really liked his fielding instruction on twipb.
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