From the Archive: February 23, 2008
Its been known for some time that Jeter sucks in the field.
People have a hard time with this conclusion because he looks good at short, in that he's fluid and makes athletic plays, and because the scientific approach involves hypothesizing about plays he should have made, but didn't get to, and comparing him to others in similar situations that of course aren't observable at that moment from that same seat in the ballpark (or on the couch).
More generally, its another case of the battle between objective (observer-independent) detailed statistical analysis versus a subjective anecdotal perception, a.k.a science versus religion.
So that's always fun.
But I’ve often wondered why Jeter has such poor range- after all, he's a speedy baserunner, and an especially brilliant basestealer- check out his percentage of successful steals. One would think such things would translate into fielding range, but I guess they don't.
Sucks for him, that asshole.