Shortstop Andrelton Simmons has reportedly agreed to a new contract with the Minnesota Twins on Tuesday evening. Simmons signs for one year and $10.5 million. The 2020 shortstop free agent class pales in comparison to the 2021 class, and while Simmons is not in the level of that class, he is still a high-value sign for the Twins, who will play him at SS and move Jorge Polanco to multiple positions. Simmons spent the previous five seasons with the Los Angeles Angels.
Andrelton Simmons in Agreement with the #Twins for 1 yr, $10.5M. He will play SS. Jorge Polanco will play multiple positions
— Joel Sherman (@Joelsherman1) January 27, 2021
Although Simmons did not have a great 2020 with the glove, he has long been known as a defensive standout at shortstop. His four Gold Glove awards certainly prove that point. Additionally, both old-school and new-school metrics support Simmons’s standout defensive ability, even after they illustrate his down season.
In 2020, his fielding percentage of .960 was below the league average of .973 and his range was also below average. As per more modern numbers, his defensive runs saved sat at -2 and his outs above average was -1. Simmons only played in 30 of the possible 60 games so it may not be worth putting tremendous stock into his 2020 performance.
Still, his career defensive runs saved sits at nearly 200, and he accumulated 44 outs above average from 2017-2019. The league average range factor per game in Simmons’s nine-year career is 4.13. In that span, his RF/G is 4.34.
2020 was a small sample for all and even smaller for Simmons. Therefore, it is safe to expect a performance closer to his career resume as he enters his age-31 season.
The bat of Andrelton Simmons is not as a good as his glove, but he is still reliable at the plate. He doesn’t hit for power, with a career .379 slugging percentage. In an era where OPS is a heavily-relied-upon statistic to evaluate offense, Simmons’s lack of power leads to below-league-average numbers.
However, his batting average and on-base percentage illustrate that he is not a total liability with the bat, even if he can’t hit for power. He is a career .269 hitter with a .317 on-base percentage. He has hit a respectable .280 or higher three times in his five seasons as an Angel with a .330 or higher on-base percentage just as many times.
Although his offense does not pose as a significant threat, Andrelton Simmons will still provide good production to the Twins because of his defense, making him a good value signing.
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