Player Reviews: Scott Elarton and Rick White

RHSP Scott Elarton – Age 28
2004 Salary: ~$400,000
2004 VORP: 19.2
Contract Status: Free Agent

What you saw this season from Elarton is probably the best you’re going to get from him. He’s a flyball pitcher, and that’s not necessarily a horrible thing for someone who pitches in Jacobs Field; the Jake has been a fairly neutral park for home runs over its first 10 seasons. Unfortunately for Scott, his previous stop was Coors Field, which offered the double whammy of flattening his curveball and turning lazy flyouts into home runs. Does his time in Coors excuse all his bad numbers? Absolutely not; but it appears that Elarton can be an acceptable 5th starter now that he’s regained at least some of his confidence. Contrary to what I thought about him when the Indians signed him, he should be brought back if the price is right. Given that the Indians gave Jason Bere and Jeff D’Amico $1M contracts with worse credentials, Elarton’s worth at least that much.

RHRP Rick White – Age 35
2004 Salary: ~$400,000
2004 VORP: 2.7
Contract Status: Free Agent

This is a situation where you say thanks to White for being a replacement-level reliever when you didn’t have any in your bullpen, but part ways because he’s a replacement-level reliever. The term that’s thrown around describing these types of guys are “fungible,” meaning easily replaceable. Of course there’s a problem if Mark Shapiro can’t get any better relievers than White next season, but that would be more an issue with Shapiro’s performance than with White’s.

Next up: Arbitration-eligible players

Site Update

I’ve finally given up constructing a player page for each player in the organization; now when you click on a player, you’ll be taken to their page at The Baseball Cube. I’ve also linked to their draft page, as you can access every single one of the Indians’ drafts via one page. I will however continue to update the Depth Chart, Transactions Page, and Options Page myself.

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