We all know about the five tools. They are, as Chris Wheeler described them the other day, the five traditional areas in which baseball players are measured: hitting, hitting for power, running speed, throwing, and sliding both ways. That last one may only be true under the toupee, but there you go.
This approach, while simple and convenient, is, I fear, at once an oversimplification and out of reach of a certain range of baseball fans. Ergo, I would like to propose a revision of the "tools" system, rather than dividing skillsets into quintiles, I will simply compare individual players to individual tools of different types. You immediately see the genius of this system! You do, right? No? Well, just go with it.
Chase Utley - Milwaukee V28 Cordless Sawzall. Totally badass in its prime, but the batteries are wearing down a little, the bearings have lost a step, and it's being phased out for a newer model. Still, it's very portable and can cut anything.
via my workbench
Roy Halladay - Old Delta Sawbuck framing saw. Still ruthlessly efficient and cutting framing and trim, but definitely losing a step. Also the cord needs to be replaced.
in it's lair deep within my basement workshop, the Sawbuck plots it's revenge
Cliff Lee - LIDAR. Fabulously expensive. Wondrously accurate.
Ryan Howard - This goofy manual snowblower thing that came with my house. Seems like a brilliant time-saver at first, but it barely works and pretty soon, you're left wondering why someone spent the money on it in the first place
via my garage door
Michael Young - Ancient Girards drill press. Still works, still used everyday at the Wasau factory in Milwaukee, WI. Virtually immobile.
Wausau-Everest, maker of fine snow removal equipment
Ben Revere - Miniature Ames garden shovel. Effective at short distances. Adorable.
Jonathan Papelbon - JB Weld. Does one thing. Does it very well. Does it very slowly.
Phillippe Aumont - Robertson (square-drive) screwdrivers. They're Canadian, rather unusual, and most people don't know their real name. Quite effective, though, as cam-out is virtually eliminated. You could probably get a set in trade for LIDAR gear.
Charlie Manuel - One of those slotted scoops used to clean out a catbox.
LOCK THE TASKBAR! CLEAN THE CATBOX!
Ruben Amaro Jr. - Milwaukee Variable Temp heat gun. Variable temperature range from 150 to 1100 degrees, variable fan speed, but one thing's for sure: a whole bunch of hot air.
via my workbench
Chad Durbin - This old piece of shit axe I found on a beach.
via Teller, AK
This concludes Phrozen's scouting report. Stay tuned for next when we compare the Phillies to Sci-Fi villains or cheese or ancient empires perhaps.