I’m gonna see if I can go a whole post without referencing last night’s historic election. There’s been a rumor floating around MLB Trade Rumors. They’re saying the Braves might trade Kelly Johnson to the Cardinals for Ryan Ludwick.

The rumor was first reported by the AJC’s David O’Brien. Here’s what he had to say about the rumor on Tuesday:

By the way, I didn’t start the Johnson-for-Ludwick rumor, though I’ll take credit if you insist. It was something I heard whispered and I said I’d let you know if I heard it said any louder.

But I do think Braves are trying to get Ludwick. Just don’t know if they’d give up KJ to get him.

Don’t know if they’d give up KJ for Ludwick? For real?

Sure, Johnson plays a skill position and he’s three years younger than Ludwick but, I mean, come on. Ludwick hit 37 home runs in 2008. That’s serious power, and it’s power that Johnson will never possess.

Let me throw some numbers at you:

Ludwick’s OPD (offense plus defense) in 2008 was 36.4. Johnson’s was 9.9.

Ludwick’s OPS+ was 150. Johnson’s was 108 and his career high is 117.

Ludwick created 117 runs in 2008. Johnson created 87.

Ludwick’s OBP was .375. Johnson’s was .349 (though, in 2007 it was .375).

Ludwick’s VORP was 53.6. Johnson’s VORP was 27.7.

Here’s the argument against Ludwick:

In 2008, Ludwick’s batting average for balls in play was .342. That was the fifth highest in the league and suggests he was pretty lucky. But here’s the thing: Johnson’s BABIP was .340, good for eighth highest in the league. So he was equally lucky.

Given that both players were equally lucky in 2008 and that Ludwick managed to hit 25 more home runs, post a batting average 12 points higher, and slug nearly 150 points higher, I’ve got to say that he’s the guy I want.

So if I’m the Cardinals GM and I get a call from Frank Wren today proposing a straight up trade of Johnson for Ludwick, I’ve got only one thing to say: “Yes we can!

(D’oh! I almost made it.)

2 Responses to “Ryan Ludwick is better than Kelly Johnson”

  1. For some reason, some Braves fans seem to think Johnson for Ludwick is too steep a price. And they are wrong for the reason you stated. But, I think Dave O’Brien was saying the Braves might rather offer a package that includes someone other than Kelly Johnson as opposed to not willing to make a KJ for Luckwick swap straight up. At least I hope that’s what he was saying.

  2. Coley Ward says:

    The argument in favor of keeping Johnson is obviously that it’s tough to find a second baseman who can hit, so I understand if they’re hesitant to part with him. That said, I don’t know who the Braves would trade, if not Johnson. Nobody (other than the Royals) wants Francoeur. McCann is too steep a price. Cox loves Escobar, and for good reason.

Leave a Reply

    Recent Comments

    • planet hobbywood: This is very interesting.
    • Bren: He is a awesome player and a good man.. sweet.. polite.. friendly.. down to earth.. he never acted as though he...
    • HADAJUN( Japanese): Okajima a Japanese hero?
    • Rickt: I am the biggest Cal Jr fan around but one of my good friends played minor league baseball in the Orioles...
    • HADAJUN: I wish for play in Japan. The death is regrettable.


    Subscribe via email

    Enter your email address:


Featured posts

December 5, 2011

Will anybody get elected to the Hall of Fame this year?

Last week, we asked you to vote for who you would like to see enshrined in baseball’s Hall of Fame. The verdict? If it were up to UmpBump readers, nobody would make it in. The leading vote getter (so far) is Jeff Bagwell, who has 60% support. Of course, in the real voting, players need […]

January 5, 2011

Annual UmpBump Hall of Fame Balloting: 2011 Edition

In what has become an annual tradition, we here at UmpBump cast our ballots for the Hall of Fame on the eve of the announcements of the voting for the real Hall of Fame. Voters can vote for anyone ever who has been retired from baseball for at least five years and is not already […]

October 19, 2010

Crowdsourcing the Greats: The Top 10 Managers of All Time

Now that we’ve looked at every position on the diamond, as well as relief pitchers, we are nearing the end of our “Crowdsourcing the Greats” series. But before we finish, let’s turn one more time to the internet hoi polloi for answers on who the greatest baseball manager of all time was. As usual, we […]