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6.10.2005

Le ROY, C'est Moi 

Thanks to Baseball Prospectus, I had a nice little lift this morning. The stat of the day in this morning's newsletter is top NL rookies ranked by VORP, or value over replacement player.

Third on the list but nearly tied for second is Jason Ellison. He and Ryan Church of Washington have produced nearly 14 runs of VORP, well behind the top rookie Clint Barmes of the Colorado Venisons.

But now Clint is in hospital, as they say across the pond, with a few months off to work on his vocal range ("Doe, a deer, a female deer"), while J-El continues to play like he's a plastic toy wound a little too tightly. I half expect him to bounce across the playing surface with his teeth chattering up and down. I can't argue with the results, but Ellison is one of the most spastic-looking players I've ever seen.

And he isn't likely to be benched soon. As our old friend Rickey Watters once mused, "For who? For what?" Not for Marquis Grissom, that's for sure.

So J-El of Planet Spazzatron has a legit shot at N.L. Rookie of the Year.

So does Lance Niekro. He's sixth on the list, just a couple vorp-sprinkles behind the Mets' Victor Diaz and Braves' Wilson Betemit. Perhaps even more than Ellison, whose brain cramps and defensive bobbles are aggravating, Niekro has done all he can to win himself more playing time. His defense is fine, he's looking more selective at the plate, and he's hitting for plenty of power.

The Giants last ROY was...any guesses? No peeking. Bonus question: Who was the last Giant to place in the top 5 in ROY voting?

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