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Mad Em-Dashes is a St. Louis Cardinals blog by Dan Moore that does not want to waste your time. 

Why your mental picture of Kolten Wong is blurry

Four of the 10 best second basemen of all time retired before the end of World War II. One of them is Joe Morgan—you can set him off to the side, we won't be coming back to him for a while. Two of them are famous for how quickly the Hall of Fame dumped them, and another was dumped so fast he's not even famous for that. One of them ended his career as an image macro, and the other retired in the middle of the most expensive contract of all time, came back, and just wasn't very good any more.

11 is Chase Utley.

I don't want to belabor this; the best are mostly going to be the best in their own way, at any position. But second base is a graveyard. You might know that Lou Whitaker is fifth on this list, and you might even know that Bobby Grich is sixth on this list, but Willie Randolph is tenth on this list.

Rk Player WAR/pos G CS BA OBP SLG
1 Eddie Collins 123.9 2825 195 .333 .424 .429
2 Nap Lajoie 107.2 2480 26 .338 .380 .466
3 Joe Morgan 100.3 2649 162 .271 .392 .427
4 Charlie Gehringer 80.8 2323 90 .320 .404 .480
5 Lou Whitaker 74.8 2390 75 .276 .363 .426
6 Bobby Grich 71.0 2008 83 .266 .371 .424
7 Frankie Frisch 70.1 2311 74 .316 .369 .432
8 Ryne Sandberg 67.7 2164 107 .285 .344 .452
9 Roberto Alomar 66.7 2379 114 .300 .371 .443
10 Willie Randolph 65.6 2202 94 .276 .373 .351
11 Chase Utley 58.1 1323 17 .287 .373 .498
Second base is a compromise. The guys who end up there are either not good enough on defense to be shorstops or not good enough on offense to be third basemen. Rogers Hornsby, the patron saint of second base, isn't on this list because he started 300 games at shortstop and 200 more at third.

The patron saint of second base as we know it, Joe Morgan, is so underrated that the man himself appears to have no idea how or why he was so good. One year he had a walk-to-strikeout ratio of three. After he turned 30 he stole 369 bases and was caught 72 times. Joe Morgan's terrible announcing probably helped get Parks and Recreation made. Right up to the moment computers begin blaming themselves for ruining baseball they will find new ways Joe Morgan was good at it.

Or Chase Utley 2009. A .282 average, 31 home runs, and then a bunch of little easter eggs for people who enjoy reading Baseball-Reference: hit by 24 pitches, 23 stolen bases in 23 attempts, only five double plays despite batting second and third all year, 17 runs on defense.

Kolten Wong is the No. 58 prospect on this year's MLB.com list. He's a good baserunner, but not ostentatiously good; he's fine on defense, but no shortstop; he'll hit .300 but he probably won't win a batting title. He's major league ready except he hit .153 in 62 plate appearances there last year. He's on the list, but he's no Oscar Taveras.

This is probably just how second basemen are; if Kolten Wong had one breakout skill for me to hold onto he'd be somewhere else. I don't know what to expect, watching his rookie season, except that I probably won't be watching closely enough.