Blog Entry

Would You Rather Have: Hosmer or Votto?

Posted on: January 15, 2012 12:28 pm
 


By C. Trent Rosecrans


The gut reaction to today's Would You Rather Have is the easiest so far and probably the easiest of the entire series. But the gut reaction isn't always the easiest.

Today we look at two first basemen, Eric Hosmer of the Royals and Joey Votto of the Reds. While the easy answer is Votto -- the 2010 National League MVP -- the long view makes the question more difficult. The difference in players today isn't just what they can do on the field at the moment, it also includes the future and how long you can keep a player. So today's question isn't just Hosmer or Votto, it's better put as Would You Rather Have Hosmer for six years or Votto for two?

The case for Hosmer

Hosmer's case comes down to promise (and price). A rookie in 2011, Hosmer hit .293/.334/.465 with 19 homers and 78 RBI in 128 games -- a year before the Royals expected him to land in Kansas City. Hosmer, the third overall pick in the 2008 draft, hadn't played above Double-A before 2011. The Royals started him in Triple-A in 2011 despite a strong spring. He responded by dominating the Pacific Coast League in his first (and only month) at the highest level in the minors, hitting .439 and getting on base in more than half his plate appearances. The Royals promoted him to the big leagues in early May. Not only did he show he belonged, he got better as the season went on, finishing strong by hitting .349 with five homers in the last month of the season.

The case for Votto

This isn't tough -- the former MVP finished second in Rookie of the Year voting in 2008 when he put up a 125 OPS+ and hit 24 homers. That's been his worst season as a pro. In the last three years he's hit .318/.418/.565 with a 161 OPS+. Think his numbers are inflated by playing in hitter-friendly Great American Ball Park? Think again -- in his career he's hit better away from GABP, hitting .296/.391/.534 in Cincinnati and .329/.418/.566 away from it. Coming up through the Reds' minor leagues, everyone knew Votto could hit, but the knock against him was his glove. Since then, he's turned into a Gold Glove first baseman.

Votto, though, may only be in Cincinnati two more years. Last winter he signed a three-year, $38 million deal covering his arbitration years, but none of his free agent years. Votto will be the premier free agent of the 2013 season at the age of 30 and he won't come cheap. In all likelihood, Votto's pricetag will be more than the Reds can afford and the team's first MVP since Hall of Famer Barry Larkin will be playing in a different uniform. While Votto will be making $9.5 million in 2012 and $17 million in 2013, Hosmer will be making near the league minimum -- and he'll be wearing Royal blue for the foreseeable future.

Our call

In the end, it probably comes down to your team. If you're the Reds and looking to win immediately, you'll take Votto. If you're building for the future and watching your pennies, like the Royals, it's Hosmer. In a vacuum, I'll take Votto for two MVP-caliber seasons over the potential for more in Hosmer. Hosmer's in the Show Me State, and Votto's already shown me he's one of the premier players in the game. But saying all this, I can see a scenario in 2015 that I'm looking back in regret over this choice.

Fan Vote: Would you rather have Hosmer for six years on your favorite team or Votto for two?



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Comments

Since: Aug 24, 2011
Posted on: January 15, 2012 4:48 pm
 

Would You Rather Have: Hosmer or Votto?

Just like the Cards were out of the race in 2010.


You are insane if you think the Cards are going to run away with things. The truth is your entire line up was pitched to differently cuz Albert was there. It will be a competitive year with no sure winner. Your banking on Bartles and James (Beltran and Berkman) to stay healthy all year? Then what? Pitch around Holliday and the crying catcher you have Molina,CHILD PLEASE. The Reds have a very talented and youthful team with a brighter future right now.   


Molina, Average at best offensively, great defensively...wawawawa

Holliday, best player

Berkman,old and wont hold up,will sink fast


Beltran, same as Berkman, injury prone, on the decline


Freese, good in playoffs, decent player but verdict is not in completely 


Carpenter is great but likely wont repeat


Wayneright, may never be the same.


Whos closing?        
;     &nbs
p;     




Since: Aug 24, 2006
Posted on: January 15, 2012 4:34 pm
 

Would You Rather Have: Hosmer or Votto?

It must really be a slow time in sports reporting to have to come up with such a question. Why are we not talkong about division winners, free agent signings, or trades instead of this crap. Yhis is really a question that has no bearing on anything. Come on and be open with new ideas, but right articles with some sort of meaning.




Since: May 29, 2009
Posted on: January 15, 2012 3:50 pm
 

Would You Rather Have: Hosmer or Votto?

I would rather have Berkman then Votto. Votto may have better numbers at the end of the Year but it wont matter as the Reds will be out of the Race by All Star break and the Cards will be going to the Playoffs again
Good lord -- That is just pure stupidity.  That is worse than the Cards fan who said to me STL will have no problem making up for the offense they will lose from Pujols and that their offense would actually be better this year coming up.  LOL.



Since: Feb 18, 2011
Posted on: January 15, 2012 3:43 pm
 

Would You Rather Have: Hosmer or Votto?

Rebel is like most Cardinal fans -- idiots. It isn't a given Votto is going to leave Cincy. There was a piece on him a couple of years ago in SI where he said he gets his "big city fix" when he goes on the road. There's a chance he'll stay in Cincy and not chase the bright lights.



Since: Jun 20, 2011
Posted on: January 15, 2012 3:24 pm
 

Would You Rather Have: Hosmer or Votto?

No Offense? Holliday, Berkman, Freese, Beltran, Craig, Molina. No offense? Put down the crack pipe and start again.
I usually don't reply to nonsense...but please stop.





Since: Jul 10, 2008
Posted on: January 15, 2012 3:23 pm
 

Would You Rather Have: Hosmer or Votto?

+161 OSP is insane, that means he is 61% better than the league average over that time.  I would take the proven over potential anyday especially when his prime is now and in the future.  



Since: Aug 6, 2010
Posted on: January 15, 2012 3:21 pm
 

Would You Rather Have: Hosmer or Votto?

I have Hosmer on my potential Sophomore slump list. I really liked him last season, he was a GREAT add to my team.  I would still take him, but im sure people will reach for him.



Since: Feb 23, 2009
Posted on: January 15, 2012 3:11 pm
 

Would You Rather Have: Hosmer or Votto?

I think you are confused, the Cardinals have no offense with out Pujols they suck offensively.  Reds are the clear favorites to win the division



Since: Dec 23, 2010
Posted on: January 15, 2012 2:39 pm
 

Would You Rather Have: Hosmer or Votto?

I would rather have Berkman then Votto. Votto may have better numbers at the end of the Year but it wont matter as the Reds will be out of the Race by All Star break and the Cards will be going to the Playoffs again



Since: Nov 27, 2011
Posted on: January 15, 2012 2:27 pm
 

Would You Rather Have: Hosmer or Votto?

Joey Votto is the man _____________ love to watch em play .


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