CSS Button No Image Css3Menu.com

Baseball Prospectus home
  
  
Click here to log in Click here for forgotten password Click here to subscribe

Zachary Levine 

Search Articles by Zachary Levine

All Blogs (including podcasts)

Active Columns

Authors

Article Types

Archives

10-16

comment icon

9

Skewed Left: The Molina Mind-bender
by
Zachary Levine

10-07

comment icon

3

Playoff Prospectus: NLDS Game Three Recap: The Irony Of Ryu's Strong Start
by
Zachary Levine

10-06

comment icon

5

Playoff Prospectus: PECOTA Odds and Monday Previews
by
Mike Gianella and Zachary Levine

10-03

comment icon

1

Playoff Prospectus: NLDS Preview: Dodgers vs. Cardinals
by
Zachary Levine

09-29

comment icon

0

Skewed Left: All Games Are Equal Except For These
by
Zachary Levine

09-17

comment icon

5

Skewed Left: How to Change Things When Change is Hard
by
Zachary Levine

09-11

comment icon

2

Skewed Left: It's Not a No-Hitter 'til _____
by
Zachary Levine

09-05

comment icon

4

Skewed Left: The Billy Beane Famous-Old-DH Gambit
by
Zachary Levine

08-28

comment icon

21

Skewed Left: A Three-Hour Tour
by
Zachary Levine

08-21

comment icon

4

Skewed Left: Saber Seminar One Year From Now
by
Zachary Levine

08-14

comment icon

16

Skewed Left: Where Have All The Suspensions Gone?
by
Zachary Levine

08-01

comment icon

4

Transaction Analysis: Astros, Marlins, Swap Sell-Low Guys
by
Zachary Levine, Jeff Moore, J.P. Breen and Jason Parks

07-31

comment icon

1

Skewed Left: The Nomar Garciaparra Trade Turns Ten
by
Zachary Levine

07-25

comment icon

4

Skewed Left: The Mismatched Incentives of Draftees and Their Agents
by
Zachary Levine

07-17

comment icon

0

BP Daily Podcast: Effectively Wild Episode 494: Evan Drellich on the Astros' Aiken Pains
by
Ben Lindbergh and Zachary Levine

07-15

comment icon

4

Skewed Left: What Is An All-Star Pitcher?
by
Zachary Levine

07-09

comment icon

7

Skewed Left: What the CBA Says About the All-Star Game
by
Zachary Levine

07-03

comment icon

16

Skewed Left: The Ingrained, Misguided, 162-Game Schedule
by
Zachary Levine

06-26

comment icon

3

Skewed Left: Which Position Players Make the Best Pitchers?
by
Zachary Levine

06-19

comment icon

2

Skewed Left: The Missing Mound Charge
by
Zachary Levine

06-12

comment icon

1

Skewed Left: The Wisdom of Pinch-Hitting with Pitchers
by
Zachary Levine

06-05

comment icon

17

Skewed Left: The Economics of the Singleton Extension
by
Zachary Levine

05-29

comment icon

7

Skewed Left: What We've Learned About Replay
by
Zachary Levine

05-22

comment icon

1

Skewed Left: Dallas Keuchel Defies his Destiny
by
Zachary Levine

05-13

comment icon

21

Skewed Left: How Much Losing Jose Fernandez Hurts
by
Zachary Levine

05-08

comment icon

2

Skewed Left: The Five Teams That Don't Have to Play by (All of) the Rules
by
Zachary Levine

05-01

comment icon

0

Skewed Left: Staying Alive in the Independent Leagues, 2014 Edition
by
Zachary Levine

04-24

comment icon

9

Skewed Left: The Squandered Promise of the Diamondbacks Rotation
by
Zachary Levine

04-18

comment icon

4

Skewed Left: How Service Time Dictates Top Prospect Promotions
by
Zachary Levine

04-16

comment icon

0

BP Daily Podcast: Effectively Wild Episode 429: The Dodgers, DirecTV, and Baseball's Broadcast Bubble/Your Finest Emails
by
Ben Lindbergh and Zachary Levine

04-10

comment icon

7

Skewed Left: The Surprising Sameness of Justin Upton
by
Zachary Levine

04-03

comment icon

11

Skewed Left: The Revolving Door Rankings
by
Zachary Levine

03-27

comment icon

11

Skewed Left: PECOTA vs. Vegas
by
Zachary Levine

03-25

comment icon

10

Prospectus Preview: AL East 2014 Preseason Preview
by
Andrew Koo and Zachary Levine

03-20

comment icon

7

Skewed Left: Where Are All the Australian Position Players?
by
Zachary Levine

03-13

comment icon

25

Skewed Left: The Good and the Bad News About Instant Replay's Spring Trial
by
Zachary Levine

03-07

comment icon

3

BP Unfiltered: Your Attempts To Explain Baseball
by
Zachary Levine

03-06

comment icon

42

Skewed Left: The Art of Explaining Baseball
by
Zachary Levine

02-27

comment icon

13

Skewed Left: What it Means to Move Off Catcher
by
Zachary Levine

02-26

comment icon

5

BP Unfiltered: Sabermetrics Goes MOOC
by
Zachary Levine

02-13

comment icon

41

Point/Counterpoint
by
Ben Lindbergh and Zachary Levine

02-13

comment icon

9

Skewed Left: Fun with 2014 PECOTA Comparables
by
Zachary Levine

02-06

comment icon

7

Skewed Left: The Truth About One-Day Contracts
by
Zachary Levine

01-30

comment icon

18

Skewed Left: Saying Goodbye to Lance Berkman
by
Zachary Levine

01-23

comment icon

3

Skewed Left: Bobby Abreu, the Phillies, and Other Reunions That Might Make Sense
by
Zachary Levine

01-16

comment icon

5

Skewed Left: The Historical Precedent for an A-Rod Comeback
by
Zachary Levine

01-07

comment icon

21

Skewed Left: What the 1936 Hall of Fame Ballot Tells Us About Today's
by
Zachary Levine

01-02

comment icon

25

Skewed Left: Better Versions of Bad Hall of Fame Arguments
by
Zachary Levine

12-26

comment icon

9

Skewed Left: The Quiet Offseason in Odds
by
Zachary Levine

12-19

comment icon

2

Skewed Left: The Company They Tweet, The Sequel
by
Zachary Levine

<< Previous Author Entries Next Author Entries >>

How does the shocking trade of Nomar Garciaparra look 10 years in the rear-view?

Ten years later, the trade that allegedly won the Red Sox the 2004 World Series has been drowned in so much narrative that it’s almost impossible to separate it from the breaking of the 86-year drought that happened three months later.

When 4 p.m. Eastern rolls around today and the fates of Jon Lester and the like are decided, it will mark exactly 10 years to the hour since Nomar Garciaparra was unceremoniously dumped on the Cubs. He was a year removed from a second straight 7-WARP season and a sixth 6-WARP season in seven years. He was already the best shortstop in Red Sox history and he didn't have to play a single game in his 30s to get there.

Read the full article...

It's in the agent's interest to get the most money for his players. That's true... mostly.

When the Astros last took us back to economics class, it was for what was generally regarded as a good thing on their end. They showed how a team can use not only their leverage, but the misaligned incentives of individual players and their collective to get what appeared to be a good deal for Jon Singleton. (Whether or not Singleton’s .179/.263/.340 start with a 37 percent strikeout rate changes your opinion of the deal now, the economics do not change.)

Now somehow, a month later, we’re back. It’s probably not a coincidence that it’s the Astros again. This is what they do. From the first pick of baseball’s new amateur economy, this is what they’ve done. They play with the rules, they use their leverage, and now they’re going to be one No. 1 overall draft pick short of a trio at Camp Kissimmee next year.

The rest of this article is restricted to Baseball Prospectus Subscribers.

Not a subscriber?

Click here for more information on Baseball Prospectus subscriptions or use the buttons to the right to subscribe and get access to the best baseball content on the web.


Cancel anytime.


That's a 33% savings over the monthly price!


That's a 33% savings over the monthly price!

Already a subscriber? Click here and use the blue login bar to log in.

Ben and Zachary talk to Houston Chronicle Astros beat writer Evan Drellich about the Astros' contentious negotiations with no. 1 overall pick Brady Aiken.

Read the full article...

Maybe all those All-Star relievers is actually the right idea

When it became evident that David Price would be pitching on Sunday and thus would be unable to pitch in the All-Star Game, John Farrell had a menu of options from which to choose a replacement. The fans voted in Chris Sale from a group of five Final Vote candidates, and the other four—all starting pitchers—were not pitching Sunday and very much available.

Garrett Richards would have made the most sense with a half-season that a traditionalist would love—a great record, ERA and team performance—and the underlying stats to go with it.

Read the full article...

This is a BP Premium article. To read it, sign up for Premium today!

July 9, 2014 6:00 am

Skewed Left: What the CBA Says About the All-Star Game

7

Zachary Levine

Even the All-Star Game gets collectively bargained.

We’re six days from the All-Star Game, an event that despite Major League Baseball’s best marketing efforts, you might think is kind of meaningless. We’re five days away from the Home Run Derby, an event that even when put next to the All-Star Game takes on the air of a sideshow, and rarely in a good way.

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

Why the schedule we're stuck with isn't necessarily the one we should want.

“The people who control the destinies of base ball, and the enthusiasts who have kept the game alive and made it the greatest pastime in the world, demand as much of base ball as they can get. Our duty is to provide it and simply adhere to their wishes in the matter.” – American League Vice President Charles W. Somers to the Sporting Life, May 2, 1905

This week we reached the halfway point of the season in baseball, a sport whose name’s halfway point is no longer denoted with a space, and boy is there much of it. We’re ~50 percent of the way to 162, a number that’s been part of the American League fan’s rapid recall since 1961 and the National League’s since 1962, without any deviations save for a couple of strike years. And it’s a number that – given baseball’s dynamic scheduling history – makes no sense.

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

When non-pitchers take the mound, do players from particular positions perform better?

It’s the beginning of the 17th inning and the bullpen is empty except for the bullpen catcher, who’s long since stopped bullpen catching and started to see how many paper cups he can balance on his head. Or, more likely in today’s baseball, it’s the middle of the seventh inning and you’re down by seven runs.

In either scenario, the manager and the pitching coach start looking around for an arm. Not a lot of requirements here. It has to be attached to somebody on the 25-man roster who hasn’t played, and it can’t belong to a pitcher. Today is just not worth using a starter. There’s always tomorrow.

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

This is a BP Premium article. To read it, sign up for Premium today!

June 19, 2014 6:00 am

Skewed Left: The Missing Mound Charge

2

Zachary Levine

When will we see another hitter attempt to take a pitcher down?

You know that scenario that you dreamt up in your backyard for when you someday play in the big leagues? The one that you had to dream up because baseball announcers in every high-leverage situation were telling you that you dreamt it up?

It’s not the one I dreamt up. I couldn’t hit the ball far enough even to picture that trot around the bases after hitting the bottom-of-the-ninth, down-by-three, bases-loaded, two-out, full-count home run. So when I played baseball in the street with my brother and whomever we could find in the neighborhood, there was only one situation that I lived for.

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

This is a BP Premium article. To read it, sign up for Premium today!

June 12, 2014 6:00 am

Skewed Left: The Wisdom of Pinch-Hitting with Pitchers

1

Zachary Levine

An underused tactic that requires some courage.

You could say that the most Sergio Romo save of Sergio Romo’s 2014 season was his 17th, a wobbly six-batter adventure against the Cardinals in which he entered with a two-run lead and held on for a one-run victory in this sequence.

RHB Jhonny Peralta: Strikeout swinging (slider, slider, sinker, slider)
LHB Jon Jay: Infield single
RHB Peter Bourjos: Infield popup (slider, slider)
LHB Daniel Descalso: Walk
LHB Matt Carpenter: RBI single

RHB Shane Robinson Infield popup (slider, slider, slider, slider, slider)






The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

This is a BP Premium article. To read it, sign up for Premium today!

June 5, 2014 6:00 am

Skewed Left: The Economics of the Singleton Extension

17

Zachary Levine

Why all the incentives are aligned in favor of contracts like the Astros' new first baseman's, and how that could change.

Leave it to the Astros, a team that's spent the last few years sending fans running to the record books, to the legal dictionary, and occasionally to the therapist, to be the team that in 2014 is sending us back to economics class.

Their general manager, Jeff Luhnow, has both an undergraduate business degree and a Kellogg MBA. Their assistant GM, David Stearns, came from the salary arbitration and collective bargaining team at MLB headquarters. Down the depth chart, their baseball operations analyst, Brandon Taubman, came from the derivatives trading world. Hell, their analogue of a traveling secretary (on this team a more comprehensive “manager of team operations”), Dan O’Neill, per his bio:

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

This is a BP Premium article. To read it, sign up for Premium today!

May 29, 2014 6:00 am

Skewed Left: What We've Learned About Replay

7

Zachary Levine

A look at challenge rates, success rates, and delays so far.

When a totally new system like Major League Baseball’s expanded instant replay—complete with brand-new job descriptions and job openings and technology—is assembled on the eve of the season, you’d imagine its implementation would look more like an evolution than the arrival of a fully formed process.

And by most accounts it has been. Whether it’s the change in the transfer rule that tangentially went along with it, or managers getting used to the silly choreography of how to argue with an umpire while simultaneously looking back at the dugout for a thumbs-up or a thumbs-down, everybody involved in the process seems to be getting better at it.

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

This is a BP Premium article. To read it, sign up for Premium today!

May 22, 2014 6:00 am

Skewed Left: Dallas Keuchel Defies his Destiny

1

Zachary Levine

The Astros southpaw's transition from a walk machine with no strikeouts into a strike machine with no walks.

As much as it might look like we have, we’ve never seen anything like this in the short career of the Astros’ best pitcher to date, Dallas Keuchel.

His career began in June 2012 with terrific results—one run allowed in five innings in the Ballpark at Arlington, a complete game six days later with one run allowed. At the All-Star break he had a 2.45 ERA on his way into a start against Arizona. Something wasn’t right, though.

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

<< Previous Author Entries Next Author Entries >>