The comment about Dave Roberts wasn't meant to be a slight. He's not Steve Finley, who wasn't Edgardo Alfonzo. That buys a lot of goodwill tokens at the start of a season. It's just that with the offseason of movement and debate, it was easy to forget he was on the team. He's a decent-enough player; he gets on base fairly well and can steal at a high percentage when he's on. Opinions on his defense range from awful (stats I don't understand) to good (other stats I don't understand). He's a complementary player in a good offense, and one of the players that helps a mediocre offense spin its wheels ever so pleasantly.
But now I'm stuck on the Beyond the Box Score point from last night. There is both an upside and downside for Roberts, but if you had to put money down with a bookie on which one is more likely, the decision would be easy. Images of a Roberts in decline don't take a lot of effort to conjure. The dinkers aren't dunking, a leg or two is sore, and he winds up with a .240/.330/.350 line. Now picture Roberts in the middle of a career year, hitting .320/.410/.450, stealing 50 bases. Uh, sure. I can also picture JFK playing backgammon with Optimus Prime as long we're on this tangent. I can picture a lot of things. Roberts having some sort of super career year is on the fringes of the possibilities. The nays have it.
There really isn't a reason to expect a total collapse this season, though. That's the story of the entire lineup. Can't guarantee a collapse, wouldn't be surprised. Call KTVU: We have a slogan for the season, and I'm willing to practically give this baby away. I think Jason Ellison is a better player than Roberts by the end of the contract, and I'm no big fan of Ellison, but Roberts has at least one more season of vintage Robertsania in him.
Two-fold comment starter: 1. Considering Bochy's affinity for matching right-handed hitters up with left-handed pitchers and vice-versa, does this team need Jason Ellison on the bench more than Mark Sweeney?. 2. Your Dave Roberts predictions, if you would....