In a word, not bad. (Yes, we know, that's two words...we like to give you extra value whenever we can--particularly when the content is free.)
We'll have to do something more systematic with the idea of "smallfry" players one of these days. It would be nice to know, for example, if there has been a resurgence of the "height-challenged" in baseball, after so many (post-neo types and Cro-Magnon types in what at first appears to be a shocking alignment, but...) have mouth-foamed about the supersizing of baseball players.
We sense oversell (which, of course, in the post-neo world, pretty much goes without saying...), but we will eventually investigate and report back to you.
Just to be clear, the chart of "smallfry" players includes all position players who are 5'10" and shorter, and all pitchers who are 5'11" and shorter. We're not going to list all of the actual names on the list in this post, but it's worth noting that among the position players are a couple of MVPs: Dustin Pedroia (AL, 2008, 5'8") and Andrew McCutcheon (NL, 2013, 5'10").
And then there's the amazing Jose Altuve, who would even more amazing if he would only learn how to draw a walk.
That would, in fact, be our lone knock on our sub-6' brethren (we will cop to the fact that the tape measure totals 69 inches when applied to us; few have objected to the number 69, so we will remind you that the wife of Randy Newman, who once postulated in song that "short people got no reason to live," stands just over five tall in her stocking feet). They should take more walks, and we're not referring to evening constitutionals.
There are currently 84 "smallfry" hitters on major league rosters, of which 41 are getting regular playing time. There are currently 32 "smallfry pitchers," who include closers Craig Kimbrel, Greg Holland, Sergio Romo and Fernando Rodney.
Mike Leake and Johnny Cueto make a nice "smallfry" rotation duo for the Reds--even if their team won't score any runs for them.
And we root for the smallest of the smallfry pitchers--Tim Collins (5'7"--struggling for the Royals), Danny Farquhar (5'9"--doing well with the Mariners), Jason Fraser (5'9"--seemingly ageless and pitching well for the Rangers), and Marcus Stroman (5'9"--incredibly, a first-round draft pick by the Blue Jays and who just won his first major league start).
Our pie chart shows where the smallfry players who play regularly are playing in the field.
You are probably not surprised to note the absence of first baseman on this list.
And, no, we are not advocating that Steve (You Don't Know It Yet, But You're Having My Baby) Garvey come out of retirement. [We were going to say "out of stud," but this is a family blog. You pervs out there will just have to settle for the fact that we sneaked--(snuck? and you know what THAT rhymes with...) in the word "come."]
Insert gasp here...or anything else you'd care to insert. (Which, come to think of it, is just another reason why we don't have a comments section...)
Anyway...all hail to the smallfry, who are proving that (heh, heh) size doesn't matter. And hail to the A's, Jays, Brewers, Angels, Indians, Phillies, Royals, Mariners, and--yes--the Red Sox...for giving the little guy a chance. You may not be able to see us down here, but--trust us--we are saluting you.