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Will the Phillies Replace Jimmy Rollins this Off-Season?

Will Jimmy Rollins lead the Phillies back to the playoffs in 2013? (Getty Images)

Let’s forget practicality for a second.

Say Ken Rosenthal’s report on FOXSports.com, that the Indians will reportedly look into every roster move conceivable, is more than an assumption that the Terry Francona regime will do what most new regimes do.

Say, despite armfuls of reports about his salary being prohibitive at this year’s trade deadline, there’d be a taker for Jimmy Rollins before the 2013 season — and that Ruben Amaro and Charlie Manuel would be OK with being givers.

How wouldn’t this make sense?

First, there’s the green. Rollins, 33, is due $11 million every year until his contract expires in 2015. Asdrubal Cabrera, 28, is due a combined $16.5 million over the next two seasons.

Then, there’s the production. Compare their offensive numbers since 2007, when Cabrera entered the league.

Year G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
2007 162 716 139 212 38 20 30 94 41 6 49 85 0.296 0.344 0.531 0.875
2008 137 556 76 154 38 9 11 59 47 3 58 55 0.277 0.349 0.437 0.786
2009 155 672 100 168 43 5 21 77 31 8 44 70 0.25 0.296 0.423 0.719
2010 88 350 48 85 16 3 8 41 17 1 40 32 0.243 0.32 0.374 0.694
2011 142 567 87 152 22 2 16 63 30 8 58 59 0.268 0.338 0.399 0.736
2012 156 632 102 158 33 5 23 68 30 5 62 96 0.25 0.316 0.427 0.743
Year G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
2007 45 159 30 45 9 2 3 22 0 0 17 29 0.283 0.354 0.421 0.775
2008 114 352 48 91 20 0 6 47 4 4 46 77 0.259 0.346 0.366 0.713
2009 131 523 81 161 42 4 6 68 17 4 44 89 0.308 0.361 0.438 0.799
2010 97 381 39 105 16 1 3 29 6 4 25 60 0.276 0.326 0.346 0.673
2011 151 604 87 165 32 3 25 92 17 5 44 119 0.273 0.332 0.46 0.792
2012 143 555 70 150 35 1 16 68 9 4 52 99 0.27 0.338 0.423 0.762

 

Who’s who? (Consider the home run numbers and games played in Rollins MVP season dead giveaways…)

Huge advantage for Rollins in the field; Cabrera finished 17th among MLB shortstops this year in fielding percentage while Rollins won a Gold Glove. But for how long? Rollins fielding measures were among the worst of his career, even if they were best among a sorry NL crop.

As for the “chemistry” thing, I think the Phillies would be live.

In theory, Cabrera could be a perfect substitute — and preempt Rollins presumed decline.

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