Logan Morrison has a lot of potential, but how good can he be? Let’s look at his underlying statistics compared to the Los Angeles Dodgers’ James Loney to see if there are any conclusions we can drew:
Double-A (Age 21):
James Loney (2005) – .284 (143-504), 11 HR, 65 RBI, 74 R, 87 K, 59 BB
Logan Morrison (2009) – .277 (77-278), 8 HR, 47 RBI, 48 R, 46 K, 63 BB
Loney – 40.0% FB%, 17.0% LD%, .330 BABIP, .361 OBP, .425 SLG
Morrison – 28.6% FB%, 19.8% LD%, .305 BABIP, .414 OBP, .436 SLG
Triple-A (Age 22):
James Loney (2006) – .380 (139-366), 8 HR, 67 RBI, 64 R, 34 K, 32 BB
Logan Morrison (2010) – .307 (73-238), 6 HR, 45 RBI, 36 R, 35 K, 48 BB
Loney – 35.2% FB%, 25.1% LD%, .404 BABIP, .426 OBP, .546 SLG
Morrison – 35.9% FB%, 13.6% LD%, .340 BABIP, .427 OBP, .487 SLG
- Both hit left-handed
- Morrison is listed at 6’4″, 245 lbs; Loney is listed at 6’3″, 200 lbs.
- Loney got a chance to play in the Major Leagues in 2006, but was returned to Triple-A in 2007 (but would return to the Majors for good later in ’07)
This is not the most exact comparison for a few reasons:
- Loney actually spent two years at Double-A, the one listed above being the second of them.
- Loney showed more extra base ability in the minor leagues, having 64 doubles over the two seasons listed above. Morrison had just 35. That can partially be explained in their line drive rates, especially in their Triple-A seasons.
- Morrison appears to have a better eye at the plate, walking more then he struck out at both levels.
I think the doubles discrepancy is the most important one to note. With his ability to hit doubles, many people speculated that as he grew older, Loney would gain power and elevation, leading to more home runs. He further deceived everyone when he reached the Major Leagues in 2007, hitting 15 HR in 344 AB. It was a mirage, however, as the power has never come close to that in the following years.
I fear that Morrison could go down a similar path. The problem is, he also hasn’t shown the same type of line drive rate or extra base ability in the upper levels of the minor leagues. It’s easy to point to his 24 HR at Single-A, but he hasn’t come close to that since being promoted.
You love to see his eye, which could make him the perfect #2 hitter in the Marlins order (which is where he currently is hitting). It should allow him to hit for a good average and, if he remains towards the top of the order, score some runs.
However, from a first baseman, fantasy owners want to see home runs. His power metrics show less hope then Loney’s at the same point in his career. Hopefully Morrison is able to develop a little more power, but at this point you can’t like what we’ve seen. I could argue that Loney’s metrics appeared more likely for power, and we’ve seen where that has led him (13 HR apiece in 2008 & 2009 and 8 HR thus far in 2010).
What are your thoughts on Morrison? Is the comparison to Loney a good one? Who do you think will be the better player long-term?
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