Ask even a casual baseball fan which position (excluding pitcher) they feel is the most important and shortstop will be the consensus. It is one of the most physically demanding positions on the field, but also requires plenty of skill as well as a strong arm. In the MLB today there are plenty of strong talents, but none perhaps as strong as that of Francisco Lindor and Trea Turner.
Linder has been in the majors ever since 2015, entering the league when he was only 21. Upon his entrance into the league, Lindor began to make a name for himself with his stellar glove. He could be found on plenty of highlight reels, and his hitting was strong as well. Because of that, Lindor ended up finishing second in the Rookie of the Year vote albeit the fact that he only appeared in 99 out of the 162 games in a season.
Last year Lindor proved that his rookie year wasn’t a fluke as he hit 30 doubles, 15 home runs, scored 99 runs, drove in 78, and finished with a batting average above .300. Those numbers led to an All-Star berth as well as a ninth place finish in the MVP voting. His excellent defensive play continued as well; earning him a gold glove. Not only did he have a great personal season, but he was able to lead his Cleveland Indians to the World Series. Lindor has started this year out with more of the same, and should earn a second consecutive All-Star nod.
However, on the other hand there is Trea Turner. Turner made his debut in 2015 as well, but only played in 27 games. Last year, in only 73 games, he finished second in the NL Rookie of the Year race. His numbers were outstanding for an experienced veteran, let alone a rookie. Turner amassed 8 triples, 13 home runs, 33 stolen bases, and a .342 batting average. His speed is what sets him apart from the masses, but his hitting ability is what could turn him into superstar.
While he has experienced a lackluster start to this season, most of that can be attributed to a hand injury suffered in the second week. However, he did go on a stretch of games that showed how he is a force to be reckoned with. Turner hit for the cycle and drove in seven runs, and then the very next night he was only a triple shy of the cycle.
Lindor and Turner are both generational talents, but determining who is the better between the two is a difficult task. Lindor easily has the edge in defense, whereas Turner has Lindor beat on the base paths. Hitting wise the two shortstops are pretty even, with neither one being that much stronger of a hitter than the other. Even though there is a small sample size of data to look at, Turner may be the better hitter, giving him the slight overall edge. Turner may be a tad better, but both players are true five-tool players, making them the perfect examples of all-around superstars. After Derek Jeter retired there was a paucity of well-known talent at the shortstop position, but these two have done an excellent job at filling that void.Follow @jackstatsblog