Wieters Proving Baseball Prospectus’ Predictions Wrong

Prior to this year’s season, Baseball Prospectus predicted that the Orioles catcher Matt Wieters would be “the team’s biggest disappointment in 2011.” Nearly two months into the season, the guys at BP couldn’t be more wrong.

Wieters was highlighted in Steve Goldman’s article about the most disappointing prospects of all time, in which he crushed O’s fans dreams of seeing the young catcher develop into a superstar behind the plate.

As we were among the first to hop on the Wieters bandwagon, let us be among the first off of it. The backstop is heading into his age-25 season. Whatever his .343/.438/.576 rates seemed to portend, that’s gone, along with the notion that he’s a switch-hitter (he has hit .230/.278/.344 from the right side) or a power hitter. His glove and the dream of what might have been will keep him around for years, but stardom now seems spectacularly unlikely.

This season, Wieters’ defense has played a vital role in the Orioles success in the win/loss column. He’s thrown out 48% of runners attempting to steal on him (14 of 29) and is leading a young pitching staff in his game calling.

At the dish, Wieters is hitting .576 with runners in scoring position. He’s driven in 25, with three homers and five doubles in 33 at bats with guys on second and third. He’s hitting .273 on the season with four homers and 26 RBI as he continues to grow as a switch hitter.

The outlandish prediction made by Goldman at BP just doesn’t seem to be holding up, the jury is still out on Wieters.

Zach Wilt is the Founding Editor of BaltimoreSportsReport.com and host of the BSR Podcast. He's a loyal Orioles, Ravens and Capitals fan who is obsessed with baseball, loves traveling, In-N-Out Burger and Walt Disney World.

7 Comments

  1. Steve

    May 26, 2011 at 9:51 am

    He’s hitting .267/.337/.404…if anything he’s proving them right..

  2. BimBim

    May 26, 2011 at 10:06 am

    Yeah, a .740 OPS is fine at the dish for a catcher. He’s not a black hole in the lineup or anything. But there is little evidence of a star in the making, here. Yet….

  3. Ross

    May 26, 2011 at 11:13 am

    A .740 OPS is very different in this the current low run scoring environment that it was in 2009 when BP went crazy with their prediction. His OPS is the sixth best amongst qualified catchers and he has the fifth best WAR of all MLB qualified catchers. Furthermore, he has the second best WAR on the Orioles. He looks alot like a well above average catcher to me.

  4. Ol' Bruz

    May 30, 2011 at 4:50 pm

    Just as a note of comparison…Wieters is already 25…By the time Bench, Johnny turned 25, he had amassed more than 100 HRs and 300 RBIs…And he was about to embark on four straight 100 RBIs seasons…I’m just sayin’…

  5. Ross

    May 31, 2011 at 7:59 am

    @Ol’ Bruz – I will agree with you that it is very unlikely that Matt Weiters will become the talent Johnny Bench was.

  6. The Fantasy God

    May 31, 2011 at 5:36 pm

    Biggest Wieters supporter/fan here. Followed him since college. He is certainly going to be an MVP caliber player and an allstar this year. This is a game of splits and since May 8th he is hitting .338. Eventually he’s projected to be a Joe Mauer like elite average hitter. And yes he still will be.

  7. Ol' Bruz

    May 31, 2011 at 9:03 pm

    Wieters is “on pace” to drive in 82 runs…Methinks his end of year total will be closer to 70 than 82…How even the biggest Wieters (what are you, maybe 6’5′, 245?) can put Wieters in the same sentence with MVP is beyond my ability to look forward…