We're back, looking at the futility of exceptionally wealthy, exceptionally talented men who attained their wealth by playing a game. Basically, struggling as a highly-paid athlete isn't exactly the worst thing that could happen to you. But still, I'm guessing the guys on this list would rather turn things around soon, because frankly, it's a list of pretty talented players who were expected to play a lot better by now.
When I talked about him a couple weeks ago, I basically was going under the assumption that he'd bounce back by now, at least offensively. But Houston's Carlos Lee has continued his run of futility, failing to hit his first home run of the season until Wednesday. He's got a five-game hitting streak going, but he still has abysmal offensive numbers and the worst defensive marks of his career. His fWAR sits at -1.1, which is really weird when you consider that he averaged 3.4 fWAR per season from 2003 through 2009.
We have a new addition to the top of the hill, and it's White Sox right fielder and 2008 MVP candidate Carlos Quentin. He's getting killed by a .160 BABIP right now, but his contact rate is down and he's swinging and missing more often. Oh, and his UZR/150 for 2010 currently sits at -63.0, which is kind of crazy. He'll obviously play better than his current -1.1 fWAR, but right now, he's just been killing the White Sox's offense lately. And speaking of their offense, I was at the game last night, and they looked awful. When the only guys hitting are Andruw Jones and Alex Rios, things are a problem.
Florida left fielder Chris Coghlan is back, too, as his offensive struggles continue. Coghlan, in 101 plate appearances, still has ZERO extra-base hits, which is part of why his .205 wOBA is tied with Texas' Julio Borbon (he's on my BOAB team, and I'm not happy about it right now) for the worst in the game. And being a below average defensive left fielder certainly doesn't help things, which is how you end up with a -1.0 fWAR. His ZiPS projected wOBA has gone down 35 points.
When the Astros signed Pedro Feliz, it was primarily for his glove. Which makes sense, his career UZR is +81.3 and his career DRS is +79, so it's safe to say that he's been one of the better defensive third baseman of the past decade. But this season, Feliz has totally fallen apart. Not only does he have just 1 walk and 1 home run in 99 plate appearances, good for a .246 wOBA, but both UZR and DRS have him at -6 so far on the season. A poor defensive third baseman that doesn't walk, has no power, and traditionally has a really low BABIP? Sounds like a pretty worthless player. WAR agrees, he's got a -0.9 fWAR mark on the year.
Atlanta's Melky Cabrera just missed the last edition's list, but his below-replacementness has him on it this time around. Some pretty smart people (or person, whatever) thought that he could be in for a pretty nice season in 2010. To say the least, I'm guessing that Dave is rather disappointed with Melky so far. The 12% walk rate is nice, but it doesn't really matter if you aren't hitting for average (.191 BA) or power (.034 isolated power). And while DRS disagrees (they have him at +2 so far this year), UZR has him at -2.9, which certainly doesn't help his bottom line. Atlanta was probably hoping for more than a -0.8 fWAR so far from one of the key returns of the Javier Vazquez deal.
Not So Honorable Mention: Aramis Ramirez, CHC (-0.7 fWAR. Seriously?), Akinori Iwamura, PIT (-0.7 fWAR), Lastings Milledge, PIT (-0.6 fWAR), Hunter Pence, HOU (-0.6 fWAR), Drew Stubbs, CIN (-0.6 fWAR)
(All data courtesy of FanGraphs)