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Ranking the Rockies: No. 47 Daniel Descalso didn't add anything to the 2015 Rockies ... or did he?

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Daniel Descalso was bad in 2015, but he wasn't quite as bad as the mainstream numbers look.

Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

Last December, the Rockies signed Daniel Descalso to a two year deal. The contract guaranteed him $1.5 million for the 2015 season and $2.1 million for the 2016 season. The hope for the Rockies is that he would prove to be a useful utility player playing a little bit of shortstop, a little bit of second, and a little bit of third while offering a different look at the plate from the left side than starters DJ LeMahieu, Troy Tulowitzki, and Nolan Arenado.

Unfortunately for the Rockies, Descalso had by far the worst season of his career at the dish. He posted a .205 / .283 / .324 line with a .607 OPS. Park adjusted, the numbers look even worse with an OPS+ of 55 and a wRC+ of 43. Even as a utility infielder posting mediocre defense and serviceable base running, WAR is not going to treat you kindly when you rack up 209 plate appearances like that. According to fWAR, Descalso was worth -1.1 wins above replacement, and according to bWAR, which we're using for this list, he comes in at -0.6 wins above replacement.

Throughout most of his career, Descalso has been a below average offensive player. However, usually he's stays close enough to league average to still be a useful player overall in terms of WAR. That wasn't the case this year, but one thing Descalso did do at the plate in 2015 that he's made a staple of his career is post a Win Probability Added (WPA) number that's much better than you would expect considering his dreadful wRC+.

It's still not anything great overall at -0.18 for the season, but when it comes attached with 209 plate appearance of 46 wRC+ baseball, it's somewhat impressive. It actually ranks 11th out of the 21 Rockies with at least 50 plate appearances this season. In other words, as terrible as Descalso's overall offensive numbers are, he's not hurting the team all that much in actual in game situations.

This isn't just a 2015 thing either. In 1,589 career plate appearances, has a very underwhelming 76 wRC+, but his career WPA is actually slightly positive at 0.32. That's a pretty neat trick.

Perhaps that's a small reason why the Rockies posted a 26-13 record in the 39 games started by Descalso. Surely that figure has much more to do with the pitchers just happening to pitch better during his starts, but in terms of pure wins and loses, it's borderline astonishing that anybody on this year's Rockies team could see the club go 13 games over .500 in their starts. Perhaps he brought just a pinch of that Cardinal devil magic over from St. Louis. Not anywhere near enough to save this group, but perhaps a pinch.

What's Next?

Descalso, as noted above, is under contract for the 2016 season at $2.1 million. The amount of time he spends as a member of the Rockies organization going forward is likely going to be determined by the club's ability to trade other middle infielders. The two biggest names in question are DJ LeMahieu, whose prime is being wasted right now on a bad baseball team and could provide value elsewhere, and Jose Reyes who represents a declining player with a disastrous contract the Rockies would like to get out of if possible.

By next September, I would like to see middle infield prospects Trevor Story and Cristhian Adames getting the majority of starts at second base and shortstop. Not only that, but I would like to see both players be able to play both positions. Ideally, I think by 2017, Adames is the utility middle infielder. Then, if Story can play either short or second, the club can go out and acquire either a shortstop or a second baseman from outside of the organization whenever it feels it's truly ready to contend and just place Story at the other spot.

For the time being though, LeMahieu and Reyes are still on the roster and Story is still likely to start the 2016 season at Triple-A. How fast and if those first two names are traded, and how fast that third name is ready to be called up to the show will determine where and if Descalso is playing on the Colorado infield next summer.