Haters to the left.
Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports
Sample sizes might be considered to be questionable at this point in the season by some, but I really don’t see a problem with simply extrapolating a players’ statistics out to 162 games to see what their likely level of performance will be.
Jhonny Peralta is no Bryce Harper (who’s on pace for a league-leading 324 home runs), but he had himself a nice day at the plate last year and is on track for what will certainly turn out to be a career year. There was much noise of upgrading the shortstop position over the offseason, but Peralta got to work in south Florida, dropped about 20 pounds, and has already proven the masses to be wrong about him.
Peralta had two base hits and a walk in four plate appearances on opening day to open the season with a would-be-record setting .667/.750/.667 slash line. He also stole a base, scored a run, and played solidly average defense. According to FanGraphs, he’s already accumulated 0.2 WAR.
You thought Mike Trout’s 10 WAR season was impressive last year? You thought Babe Ruth’s 15 WAR 1923 season was the best of all time? Try 32 WAR. That’s the kind of pace Peralta is on. We’re talking more or less Ryan Braun’s entire career to-date wrapped up in 162 neat little games.
If you ever hated on Jhonny Peralta (I’m looking at you, Lynn Henning), then you were wrong, because he’s in the best shape of his life and he’s on pace for the best individual season of all time.
The record books are about to be shattered.