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Aaron Gleeman 

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04-25

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Banjo Hitter: Mr. April
by
Aaron Gleeman

04-17

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2

Banjo Hitter: The First 162: Tim Beckham
by
Aaron Gleeman

04-14

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5

Banjo Hitter: Jon Singleton, Suited Connector
by
Aaron Gleeman

03-29

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Looking Back on Tomorrow: Minnesota Twins
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Aaron Gleeman

03-24

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4

Banjo Hitter: Sticking at Shortstop
by
Aaron Gleeman

03-08

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Banjo Hitter: The Lost Outfielders
by
Aaron Gleeman

03-03

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Transaction Analysis: Major Minors
by
Jared Wyllys and Aaron Gleeman

03-02

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Banjo Hitter: PECOTA vs. Vegas
by
Aaron Gleeman

02-24

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Banjo Hitter: PECOTA's Breakout Bets: Pitchers
by
Aaron Gleeman

02-21

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Banjo Hitter: PECOTA's Breakout Bets: Hitters
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Aaron Gleeman

02-16

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10

Banjo Hitter: PECOTA and the Twins, Sitting in a Tree
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Aaron Gleeman

02-07

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Banjo Hitter: Age-Old Questions
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Aaron Gleeman

01-24

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Banjo Hitter: Best of the Rest
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Aaron Gleeman

01-13

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Transaction Analysis: Going Back To Cali
by
Aaron Gleeman

12-30

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Best of BP 2016: The Fall of the Ryan Empire
by
Aaron Gleeman

12-16

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10

Transaction Analysis: Colorado Chronometer
by
Kenny Ducey, Aaron Gleeman, Patrick Dubuque and Jared Wyllys

12-09

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3

Internet Baseball Awards: The Polls Are Open!
by
Aaron Gleeman

11-23

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Transaction Analysis: Twins Pay For Stolen Strikes
by
Aaron Gleeman

11-03

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14

Playoff Prospectus: After 108 Years, Cubs Win the Marathon and the Sprint
by
Aaron Gleeman

11-01

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Playoff Prospectus: PECOTA Odds and World Series Game 6 Preview
by
Aaron Gleeman

10-30

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Playoff Prospectus: PECOTA Odds and World Series Game 5 Preview
by
Aaron Gleeman

10-30

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Playoff Prospectus: Wrigley Goes Silent as Indians See the Finish Line
by
Aaron Gleeman

10-28

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3

Playoff Prospectus: PECOTA Odds and World Series Game 3 Preview
by
Aaron Gleeman

10-25

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Playoff Prospectus: World Series Preview: Cubs vs. Indians
by
Aaron Gleeman

10-22

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Playoff Prospectus: PECOTA Odds and NLCS Game 6 Preview
by
Aaron Gleeman

10-19

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Playoff Prospectus: PECOTA Odds and LCS Game Previews
by
Aaron Gleeman

10-15

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Playoff Prospectus: NLCS Preview: Dodgers vs. Cubs
by
Aaron Gleeman

10-13

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Playoff Prospectus: PECOTA Odds and NLDS Game 5 Preview
by
Aaron Gleeman

10-07

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Playoff Prospectus: PECOTA Odds and ALDS Game 2 Previews
by
Aaron Gleeman

10-06

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Playoff Prospectus: ALDS Preview: Blue Jays vs. Rangers
by
Aaron Gleeman

10-04

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8

Playoff Prospectus: AL Wild Card Game: Orioles vs. Blue Jays
by
Aaron Gleeman

09-28

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5

Banjo Hitter: The Derek Falvey Era
by
Aaron Gleeman

09-13

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Banjo Hitter: Another Day In Which We Are Called To Stare At Brian Dozier
by
Aaron Gleeman

09-08

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Banjo Hitter: Let's Find the Twins a Future
by
Aaron Gleeman

09-06

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Banjo Hitter: Y'all Know Me, Still The Same Joe V.
by
Aaron Gleeman

08-25

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Banjo Hitter: Baseball's Unlikeliest Slugger?
by
Aaron Gleeman

08-16

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Banjo Hitter: The Seagers' Pursuit Of Best-Brothers Status
by
Aaron Gleeman

08-12

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9

Banjo Hitter: Winter of Their Discontent
by
Aaron Gleeman

08-09

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Banjo Hitter: How Ryan Braun Became An Asset
by
Aaron Gleeman

08-04

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Banjo Hitter: Edwin Diaz Demands Your Attention
by
Aaron Gleeman

08-01

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2

Transaction Analysis: Twins, Angels Make Seller-To-Seller Swap
by
Aaron Gleeman, Meg Rowley, Christopher Crawford and Wilson Karaman

08-01

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Transaction Analysis: Not Abad Trade
by
Aaron Gleeman and Will Haines

07-29

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2

Transaction Analysis: Nunez's Career-Year Moves to San Francisco
by
Aaron Gleeman and Adam McInturff

07-28

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3

Banjo Hitter: The Superstar as Washed-Up Hack
by
Aaron Gleeman

07-26

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Banjo Hitter: Miguel Sano Is a Strikeout Pioneer
by
Aaron Gleeman

07-21

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Banjo Hitter: The Players Who Are Just Dying To Be Traded
by
Aaron Gleeman

07-19

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5

Banjo Hitter: Twin Killing
by
Aaron Gleeman

07-14

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Banjo Hitter: Where These Terrible Twins Go From Here
by
Aaron Gleeman

07-12

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4

Banjo Hitter: The Out-of-Nowhere All-Stars
by
Aaron Gleeman

07-07

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Prospectus Feature: The Nightmare of Becoming a Fun Fact Machine
by
Aaron Gleeman

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Bryce Harper is off to a great start, which is business as usual for one of the best April hitters of all time.

I realize, given the Nationals’ lack of October success, that using a “Mr. April” moniker in relation to Bryce Harper may be viewed as criticism of some sort. That’s not my intention. Harper has hit four career playoff home runs—tied with Miguel Cabrera, Jimmie Foxx, Johnny Bench, Chipper Jones, and Jose Canseco for the 10th-most ever through age 24—and I have no doubt that he’ll put up plenty of big playoff numbers in the future. For now, though, his opening-month numbers are the ones worth drooling over, because few players in baseball history have ever hit like Harper in April.

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The no. 1 pick in the 2008 draft has not turned out as expected, yet very little has changed.

Tim Beckham played his 162nd major-league game Sunday, going 2-for-4 with a home run as the Rays’ starting shortstop.

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Maybe teams should be being even more aggressive signing prospects to long-term contracts.

Jon Singleton signed a long-term contract with the Astros before he’d even played a major-league game, inking a five-year, $10 million deal one day ahead of his June 3, 2014 debut. At the time Singleton was a 22-year-old consensus top prospect, cracking both the Baseball Prospectus and Baseball America top-100 lists in four consecutive seasons. Other prominent prospects—including Astros organization-mate George Springer—had turned down similar pre-debut offers, and some critics believed that Singleton was signing away his future too cheaply.

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Minnesota has a new front office and a friendly PECOTA projection, but are Buxton and Sano ready to be stars?

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How many top-ranked shortstop prospects actually go on to play shortstop in the majors?

Last weekend the Twins announced that their top prospect Nick Gordon, the fifth overall pick in the 2014 draft, would cease playing exclusively shortstop and begin spending some time at second base as well. Positional versatility is not a bad thing, but Gordon’s draft stock was based on the belief that he was a shortstop, period, so the fact that there’s uncertainty about his ability to stick there before he even got to Double-A is discouraging. As a rail-thin 21-year-old with a poor walk rate and just five home runs in 293 games as a pro, Gordon will likely need to have significant defensive value to be a big-league asset.

Gordon’s older brother, Dee Gordon, was also a top prospect as a shortstop who later moved to second base. Dee, who cracked BP’s top 101 prospects list in 2010 and 2011, remained a shortstop long enough to log 147 major-league starts there in 2011-2013, but then shifted to second base full time in 2014 and hasn’t played shortstop since. When talk of little brother Nick possibly moving off shortstop got louder a couple weeks ago, Dee spoke up, telling Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press: “I’m not their front office, but my brother is a shortstop and it’s going to be tough for him to play second.”

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There's a lot riding on comebacks by Michael Brantley, Kyle Schwarber, and A.J. Pollock.

Michael Brantley was one of baseball’s best all-around outfielders in 2014 and 2015, hitting a combined .319/.382/.494 with 35 homers, an MLB-high 90 doubles, 38 steals, and more walks (112) than strikeouts (107) in 293 games. He easily led Indians position players in WARP during that two-year span and placed third in the AL MVP voting in 2014. And then he missed nearly the entire 2016 season following offseason shoulder surgery, appearing in just 11 games and seeing zero action after mid-May.

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Pedro Strop signs an extension with the Cubs and minor-league deals galore for Mat Latos, Gordon Beckham, and Yusmeiro Petit.

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Projection systems and oddsmakers have a lot more in common than you might think.

Picture a veteran oddsmaker grinding away in a smoke-filled backroom, sweating over stacks of scribbled notes between puffs from a cigar. He knows all and trusts his gut feeling to come up with the casino’s lines for each day. That’s a romantic notion we’ve all seen portrayed in movies and on television, but it’s very far from reality these days. If there is a backroom, it’s more likely to be smoke-free and filled with computer monitors and advanced degrees. Analytics, not guts, drive sports-betting lines.

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Which young pitchers does PECOTA see as having breakout potential in 2017?

“Breakout” can mean different things to different people. It can mean a prospect or untested young big leaguer establishing himself as a valuable regular. It can mean a relative unknown becoming an impact player. It can mean a well-known star making the leap to full-blown superstar, perhaps even following up a “breakout” one year with an even bigger “breakout” the next. Your own definition may vary, but in PECOTA’s case “breakout” is all about out-performing track records.

PECOTA assigns each player a “breakout rate” for the upcoming season based on their odds of beating their established level of recent performance by at least 20 percent, with historical player comps serving as an important factor. Because the entire system is based on regressed-to-the-mean, 50th percentile projections, breakout rate identifies the players most likely to leave that in the dust for their 70th, 80th, and 90th percentile upsides.

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Which young hitters does PECOTA see as having breakout potential in 2017?

“Breakout” can mean different things to different people. It can mean a prospect or untested young big leaguer establishing himself as a valuable regular. It can mean a relative unknown becoming an impact player. It can mean a well-known star making the leap to full-blown superstar, perhaps even following up a “breakout” one year with an even bigger “breakout” the next. Your own definition may vary, but in PECOTA’s case “breakout” is all about out-performing track records.

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PECOTA projects Minnesota to improve by an MLB-high 21 games. How?

Every year around this time Baseball Prospectus releases the full slate of PECOTA projections for players and teams. And every year around this time those projections upset a handful of fan bases that feel disrespected or overlooked by the numbers that were crunched. Some fan bases are briefly annoyed and then brush it off, while others—and especially those like the Orioles and Royals who’ve been through this same dance with PECOTA several times before—take serious offense. Such is the life of a system designed to predict (or at least project) the future.

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PECOTA helps pick the best player in baseball for every age, from Julio Urias to Bartolo Colon and all the superstars in between.

I have a vivid memory from my little league days of sitting in the dugout after practice and listening intently as a teammate read Baseball America’s rankings of the best players in the country by age. The best player on our team, who later went on to play Division I ball, was annoyed by the notion of a 13-year-old somewhere else getting so much attention for what couldn’t possibly be (he figured) superior talent. The sixth-best player on our team, who later went on to write this article, found it fascinating that there was a 13-year-old so good at baseball that they were being written about in magazines.

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