This page provides a complete listing of our report cards for all Phillies position players.
It's report card time! As we do every year, Phils Baseball will once again review and grade the entire 2010 Phillies roster. We will begin with the unsung hero and nucleus of the team: Carlos Ruiz.
2010 was a coming out party for Carlos Ruiz. Chooch had by far his best year at the plate, setting career highs in hits, on-base percentage, slugging percentage, OPS, and batting average. He also led the team in batting average and on-base percentage.
Much of Ruiz' success can be attributed to greater patience at the plate. His 55 walks were 8 more than his previous career high. Prior to last season, Ruiz averaged a walk every 8.8 plate appearances, but in 2010 he walked every 7.9 appearances. Chooch also grounded into fewer double plays. I always used to say Ruiz competed with Pedro Feliz for the most groundouts, but last season he matched his career low in double plays with 8, but did so with 54 more at-bats.
Ruiz was equally as effective behind the plate. He is terrific at blocking balls in the dirt, protecting the plate, and decent at throwing out base runners. He finished 2 points above his career caught stealing percentage at 29%. He once again handled the staff extremely well, catching a perfect game and a no-hitter from Roy Halladay.
You can view all of Carlos Ruiz's career stats here.
Overall Grade: A
Below are Ruiz's stats over last two seasons.
We continue on with our Phillies report cards. Now we will grade the Phillies big slugger: Ryan Howard.
Ryan Howard has put up some incredible numbers in his career, and the Phillies rewarded his efforts with a 5 year, $125 million dollar contract. Ironically, this was the first year that Howard didn't put up heroic numbers. In fact, 2010 ended Howard's streak of four straight seasons of 40-plus homers and 135-plus RBIs.
For his standards, 2010 was a down year for Howard. A .276 average with 31 home runs and 108 is nothing to sneeze at, but it is not what we have come to expect from him. A stint on the disabled list is a big reason why his power numbers were down, but even if he played all 162 games he would have only ended up with 35 home runs and 122 RBIs.
But the numbers show that the injury did more than just cost Howard games. For most of the season his batting average was up and his power went down. After July and before the injury, Howard had a .292 average with 23 home runs and 91 RBIs. That would have put him on pace for 36 homers and 143 RBIs, which would have been 11 less HR than his 162 game average, but 13 points above his normal batting average and actually 5 RBIs ABOVE his normal RBI totals. Howard just wasn't the same for the first couple weeks after the injury, batting just .125 with 1 home run and 4 RBIs in 10 games in August.
Even if Howard's production was nearly the same, the fact remains that Howard's Slugging percentage (.505) and OPS (.859) were all career lows.
You can view all of Ryan Howard's career stats here.
Overall Grade: A-
Ryan Howard had a good year by most measures and essentially equaled his previous production totals, but did it with less long balls. 36 home runs may not blow you away, but 108 RBIs in 143 games aint bad for an "off year."
Chase Utley had another disappointing season. Fans loved to make excuses for Utley in the past. For whatever reason, fans said he looked tired for playing so hard or looked injured, but they always seemed to give Utley a free pass.
The honeymoon might be over for Utley soon, because his numbers have continually declined over the last several seasons. His average (.275), homers (16), RBIs (65), Slugging Percentage (.445), and OPS (.832) have declined in each of the last four seasons.
His numbers were still good for a second baseman, but they aren't the numbers of an MVP type player that fans thought he could be and that the Phillies are paying him to be. His .275 batting average isn't too far off his career average of .293, so that part of his game doesn't appear to be dropping much. But his power has practically vanished. Had he played the entire season, Utley was on pace for 23 homers and 92 RBIs. Utley went from averaging a home run every 20.5 at-bats in 2006 to once every 26.5 at-bats in 2010.
Overall Grade: B-
Chase Utley had a decent season by most measures, but his lack of production changed him from an emerging superstar to just another good ball player. It is very possible that Utley was playing hurt once again and once he is healthy we will see the old Chase Utley, but who knows if that Utley still exists?
You can view all of Chase Utley's career stats here.
Now it is time for the leader, team quarterback, team captain, etc. for the Phillies: Jimmy Rollins.
Jimmy Rollins had another very forgettable season in 2010. After going through a horrible slump in 2009, I didn't think it was possible Rollins could get worse, but he did. J-Roll missed half the season due to injury, but he wasn't much of a factor when he did play. He finished with a dreadfully low .243 average and .320 on-base percentage. His 48 runs scored prorates to about 88 runs scored in a full season, which is way to low for a leadoff hitter in this lineup.
One thing that hasn't changed one single bit is his defense. J-Roll still mans the shortstop position as well as anyone in the game. No matter what he does at the plate, Rollins never, I mean NEVER lets it affect his defense.
Overall Grade: C-
I hate to give Jimmy such a low grade, but his numbers are just not very good. It is hard to be much of a sparkplug when you are not effective on the field.
You can view all of Jimmy Rollins's career stats here.
Moving right along with our 2010 report cards, we come to one of the few new members to the Phillies: Placido Polanco.
Bringing Polanco to Philadelphia might be Ruben Amaro's most overlooked and underrated moves. Amaro signed Polanco as a number two hitter who can make contact, hit for average, get some "first to thirds," and provide some consistency to the lineup.
That is exactly what Polanco did. Placido finished first in the team with 165 hits and finished with a .298 batting average. Like most other Phillies players, Polanco was dealing with an elbow injury all season. Even after coming off the DL, Polanco just was not the same. After hitting around .300 all year, Polanco batted just .261 in Sep/Oct, bruising a fantastic season.
Polanco was strictly a high average contact hitter since he only walked 32 times and only hit 6 home runs. But that is fine for a number two hitter and it is exactly what we expected from him.
Overall Grade: A-
The only thing keeping Polanco from an A+ is his lack of walks, home runs, and runs scored. Otherwise, what a great season for him and what an upgrade over Pedro Feliz!
You can view all of Placido Polanco's career stats here.
Now we give our report card to a fan favorite in left field: Raul Ibanez.
After a perplexing first season with the Phillies in which he was on fire for the first half and injured and awful in the second half, nobody knew what to expect from Raul Ibanez.
What we discovered is that the real Ibanez was somewhere in the middle. Raul's average and on-base percentage were nearly identical to the previous year at a respectable .275 and .349, respectively.
But the big difference was in his power. Despite having 61 more at-bats, Ibanez had 18 less home runs and 10 less RBIs. Age seemed to catch up to Rauuul, as the 38-year-old watched his slugging drop from .552 to .444 and his OPS dive from .899 to .793.
Overall Grade: B-
Overall, Raul Ibanez had a very average season. He wasn't bad, but he was nowhere near the guy from the first half of 2009. If the rest of the team hit the way they were supposed to, Ibanez would have been a very nice number 6 hitter.
You can view all of Raul Ibanez's career stats here.
If there is one word to describe Shane Victorino's 2010 season, it is different. .281 to .293 His average dropped 33 points, his OBP dropped 31 points, and his slugging and OPS dropped, but he set career highs in home runs, RBIs, and stolen bases.
Let's look at this a little closer. Victorino's kept his average between .281 and .293 over the previous 4 seasons and was one of the most consistent performers, making his drop in average very strange. He ended up with career highs in homers and RBIs but his slugging percentage dropped 16 points, so I wouldn't consider that to be an increase in power.
Overall Grade: C+
Come to think of it, Victorino had a poor season for a player with his skill set. In a lineup full of power hitters, the Phillies needed Victorino to get on base, steal bases, and score runs. He didn't provide many of those things and 18 homers means nothing with a lowly .429 slugging percentage.
You can view all of Shane Victorino's career stats here.
And for the last of the report cards for everyday players is the guy who won't be here anymore: Jayson Werth.
Jayson Werth followed up a career year in 2009 with another pretty good season on paper in 2010. Werth finished with less home runs and RBIs in 2010, but nearly all of his other stats went up. His average increased 28 points, his OBP rose 15 points, his slugging improved by 26 points, and his OPS jumped 42 points. J-dub led the team in walks (82), runs (106), slugging percentage (.532), OPS (.921), and total bases (295).
Even though he hit 7 less home runs, his power was not sacrificed as Werth hit 20 more doubles. And there is an easy explanation for why he finished with only 85 RBIs: runners in scoring position. Werth batted .186 with runners in scoring position as opposed to .279 the year before and finished with 14 less RBIs in 2010. If you added those 14 RBIs to his 2010 season and he would finish with exactly the same RBIs.
Outside of his average with men on base, the other big knock is on his consistency. He had 13 HR and 47 RBIs in April through June, but then had just 6 home runs and 16 RBIs in July and August. Then he jumped up to 9 homers and 22 RBIs in September and August. Just how inconsistent is that? His 4 best months put him on pace for 35 homers and 111 RBIs, but his two worst months paced him for 18 homers and 47 RBIs.
Overall Grade: B-
Looking back on it, Jayson Werth had a fantastic season. He hit with average, reached base a lot, hit with power, knocked in runs, and scored runs. I did not give him an A because he was inconsistent and didn't hit in clutch situations. Hopefully for the Nationals he plays a little differently next year.
You can view all of Jayson Werth's career stats here.