We’re still in the early stages of the season, but we’re already seeing some weird stuff go on around baseball. The Blue Jays are seven games under .500. The Reds and Twins are currently both a few games above .500. Meanwhile, the Cardinals are 3-8, and for some reason they’re still playing Matt Adams in left field.
Adams is a first baseman and a pretty decent one, at that. However, St. Louis has had Adams in left field and nobody really knows why. Dave Cameron of FanGraphs wrote at length about the experiment, and it’s clear that it doesn’t make sense to him. Our friends over at Viva El Birdos are just as confused about the entire thing.
People who write about baseball aren’t the only ones who are confounded about this decision, either. Tommy Pham caught wind of the FanGraphs article on Twitter and gave it a like. Retweets may not equal endorsements in the land of Twitter, but likes certainly speak for themselves.
What should also speak for itself is the result of the Adams experiment. Although you should normally not take defensive metrics too seriously during the early stages of the season, the numbers seem to indicate that putting a first baseman in left field is not going to be beneficial for either the player or the team as a whole. Also, as the FanGraphs article showed, Adams is failing the eye test. It’s just all bad right now, and you have to wonder how long St. Louis will be willing to keep this going.
After making a mark on the field in college, he’ll be a contributor for whichever team drafts him, but I’m also really looking forward to the moment when he’s picked and NFL fans realize there’s an incoming rookie who was named after a musician who debuted in the 1990s. And he might not be the NFL’s last of his namesake, with former four-star DT Raekwon Davis a rising sophomore at Alabama.