Originally Posted by RedsManRick
I'm using only qualified players because I wanted to show what starters looked like. I'm not interested in what 4th OFs and defensive subs bring to the table. The split definitely increases when you included everybody because you're including guys who can't hit but get playing time in CF on occasion b/c of their gloves. If a guy's glove is good enough to make him a starter full-time, he'll still show up in the list. That so few crappy hitters show up in the CF list speaks to either the difficulty of making up that value with your glove or many teams' unwillingness to play the glove guy.
To your point, Sappelt could very well be an average or better overall CF, but the part of the conversation I was replying to was about hitting. As a hitter, the standard for starting CF isn't much lower than it is for corner OF. I'd look at a WAR framework for the full picture.
Using qualified starters doesn't show us enough about starters. It shows us only about the few players who were good and healthy enough to be a starter for an extended period of time. The fact is that we know exactly how many starting center fielders there are. Each team has exactly one.
And how is the standard for a center fielder not much lower? I don't know where you got your numbers, but using ESPN's stats, I came up with these numbers at each position in 2010:
AL .274 .339 .431 .770
NL .266 .334 .434 .767
AL .265 .326 .409 .735
NL .260 .329 .407 .736
AL .279 .356 .445 .801
NL .265 .335 .450 .785
Granted, those are including defensive subs, fourth outfielders, etc., but regardless, you can see that there's a pretty big difference between center fielders and corner outfielders. If you limit the split to only starters at each position, the gap widens even more. However, if you use only those who 'qualify', you're omitting many of the starters. I suppose it's just semantics.