The 2-Year Hangover: Comparing The 2013 And 2014 Offenses (Part III)

Cano HR vs KC This one's pretty simple.  Just a straight up position-by-position comparison of 2013 and 2014 batting lines.  I call it "The Cano Effect."

Catcher:

2013- .213/.289/.298, 57 R, 8 HR, 43 RBI 2014- .250/.305/.415, 65 R, 22 HR, 81 RBI

First Base:

2013- .229/.292/.397, 58 R, 22 HR, 83 RBI 2014- .215/.305/.382, 66 R, 25 HR, 78 RBI

Second Base:

2013- .318/.385/.521, 79 R, 27 HR, 114 RBI 2014- .246/.303/.390, 69 R, 13 HR, 53 RBI

Shortstop:

2013- .228/.286/.312, 63 R, 5 HR, 46 RBI 2014- .233/.287/.292, 48 R, 5 HR, 55 RBI

Third Base:

2013- .231/.293/.340, 70 R, 12 HR, 52 RBI 2014- .260/.335/.392, 69 R, 15 HR, 61 RBI

Left Field:

2013- .236/.293/.399, 79 R, 27 HR, 85 RBI 2014- .249/.313/.393, 90 R, 16 HR, 62 RBI

Center Field:

2013- .280/.349/.442, 98 R, 13 HR, 65 RBI 2014- .278/.335/.452, 86 R, 23 HR, 84 RBI

Right Field:

2013- .251/.296/.358, 67 R, 13 HR, 52 RBI 2014- .253/.294/.347, 62 R, 8 HR, 43 RBI

Designated Hitter:

2013- .189/.276/.307, 64 R, 16 HR, 61 RBI 2014- .230/.290/.372, 65 R, 18 HR, 63 RBI

Takeaways:

- Good gracious!  The production from the catcher and DH spots was PUTRID in 2013.  We spent a lot of time criticizing Brian McCann and Carlos Beltran this year, and justifiably so.  But they were still a big step up from what the Hafners and Stewarts were providing in 2013.

- Conversely, the difference in production at the shortstop and first base positions was negligible.  In some cases, 2013 was better.  The general expectation, bare minimum the reasonable hope, was that the returns of Derek Jeter and Mark Teixeira would boost the production at those spots this year.  That didn't happen.

- Right field has been a total dead zone and might be the most important position to upgrade this offseason.  There's no way you can expect to compete in the AL East getting that kind of production from a corner outfield spot.  Not when you don't have big time power in the other 2 outfield spots.

- Lastly, and most importantly, look at the gap between what the Yanks got from second base last year and this year.  It's wiiiiiiiiiiide.  No matter what spots the Yankees were better or worse at from 2013 to 2014, they didn't have anywhere near the type of production at any position this year that they got from second base in 2013.  That's the Robbie Cano Effect.  The difference between having an elite hitter on your team and not having one.  As weak as some positions were in 2013, they could be covered up in games by the elite-level production of Cano.  He could win games on his own and he did from time to time.  There wasn't a hitter like that on the Yankees this season and there probably won't be next season.

It was the right long-term business move to let Cano walk last offseason.  That we can all agree on.  Considering that the "crappy" team with him scored more runs in 2013 than the supposed "better" team without him did this year, however, it doesn't appear as though it was the right short-term baseball decision.