I say again, it's over-analysis and essentially penalizing the guy for batting out of position. He's not best suited to be a leadoff hitter, a lot of guys aren't, and the numbers reflect this. None of this takes away from what he accomplished at the plate in 2008, 09, and 11. He's an All Star caliber player-when-not colliding with much bigger dudes on the diamond.
For what it's worth, I'm not signing him to a contract right now either.
Well I agree that for the most part that leadoff was wrong for him. If Crawford was a bona-fide .385 OBP guy that liked batting lead-off then Ells in the 2 hole could have been pretty fine.
I don't agree it's over analysis. When I started talking about it back when nobody else noticed it.
If you average '08, '09, '11 he's an all star, but individually the first two are not IMO. The third year is better then Fred Lynn in 1979 - by far his best year, and almost as great as Trout last year. But until I see otherwise it's just a tease of what could have been.
We both agree he's not coming back unless we offer him arb to secure the pick, and he can't snag the right deal and we get him for a Boras "make good" year.