Last year, Jeter suffered through the worst season of his Hall of Fame career. He established or tied career-lows in batting average, home runs, on-base percentage, slugging percentage, OPS and OPS+, as well as several peripherals.
Regardless, he was one of only five shortstops to hit 10 HR, drive in 65 runs, and steal 10 bases, and he led all shortstops in runs scored.
The drop in batting average is likely due to a precipitous increase in his ground ball rate (up to 66 percent) and a sharp decline in his hit rate (down to 31 percent). His strikeout rate, walk rate and batting eye are all within the range of his career norms, suggesting last year’s struggles were likely an outlier.
Jeter’s weakness is his defense (his UZR/150 last year was a minus-5.4).
To the Yankees fans out there: Yeah, I know, he won another Gold Glove Award. P-u-h-l-e-a-s-e! Folks, he is a bad defender (the metrics don’t lie). Get over it. Purge yourselves—admit he is bad and move on...the entire baseball world can’t be wrong.
He is popular with the other players and the coaches in the American League, so he gets votes. If there was ever proof the Gold Glove voting is a popularity contest, Jeter is that proof.
For fantasy owners: thankfully, UZR/150 is not one of the statistics tracked in fantasy baseball. Coming off his 2010 performance, there should be considerable value with Jeter. I expect most of his stats to track toward his career norms, although his days as a .300 hitter may be dwindling to a precious few.