Outs are the currency of baseball. Players who can buy more runs per out, or conversely, spend fewer outs per run, are richer hitters. An easy way to look at this, something you can do off any stat sheet or the back of a baseball card, is to use batting outs per run, where Iím using Production to approximate runs (Runs Scored + RBI)/2. Batting outs are simply AB-Hits. So outs per run is (AB-hits)/((Runs Scored + RBI)/2). I like using production here because it deals with actual runs and RBI. Drew tends not to drive in as many runs as one might expect because heís very willing to take a walk in RBI situations. Francoeur probably drives in more runs that one might expect because he puts the ball in play so often in RBI situations. So using production should be favorable to Francoeur.
Since 2005, Francoeurís first season, 163 players accumulated at least 2000 plate appearances. Among those, Albert Pujols spends the fewest outs per run, 3.14. Jason Kendall spends the most, 7.34. J.D. Drew ranks 26th, a run costing him 4.12 outs. Francoeur ranks 107th, a run costing him 5.33 outs. In other words, it costs Francoeur 121 more outs than Drew to produce 100 runs. Thatís four and a half games of outs.
Four and a half games of outs that his teammates donít get to use. Four and a half games of lost opportunities to score. Somehow, that just doesnít seem worth it to me.