What Can Andrelton Simmons Contribute on Offense?

Updated: February 14, 2017

The Angels traded their best prospect in years to add the best defensive player in baseball. Anything that player added on offense could be considered a bonus. Andrelton Simmons did not disappoint in his first season with the Halos, as he amassed 2.6 WAR on defense alone as arguably the best defender in baseball, and if it wasn’t for an injury that cost him nearly forty games, he would have taken home yet another Gold Glove. Obviously, his play in the field is not an issue for Simmons. He is so good defensively that he could never get a hit and still justify his spot in the lineup; the man is like a fourth outfielder out there with the ground he can cover, has a cannon for an arm, and plays so damn smart in the field he never seems to make a mistake. He makes the magnificent plays look routine and the routine plays look like he’s playing on a Little League field. His offense, though, just isn’t quite there. While he did bat .281, it’s an empty average as he offered no power. Simmons on-base percentage was about league average at .324, but his slugging percentage was dismally below average at .366. Don’t get me wrong, a player with Simmons’ defensive who can get on base at a league-average clip has lots of value, but if he could ever boost his offense above league average he could be one of the most valuable players in baseball. Simmons was the second most valuable player on the Angels last season by WAR, with 4.2 to Mike Trout‘s 10.6. (How about that discrepancy!?) If Simmons could boost his power and OBP to above league average, the Angels could boast a legitimate MVP candidate outside of Trout, once the world learns to value defense properly. Simmons may never get there offensively, but if he continues to do what he’s done he’ll still be more valuable than most other players. I predict that Simmons will boost his OBP, taking his value even further, although he’ll never come close to the seventeen home runs he hit in 2013 again. With a glove like Simmons has, that kind of offensive output is something we can live with.

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