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The Indians crews are all pretty horrible. TV is stuck in the non money ball type view of baseball despite the franchise being progressive.
Agreed, plus keep in mind the Indians failed to draft any quality hitters until Kipnis for nearly a decade.
Awesome article. Would love to see more like it.
This is a fantastic idea. Loving this.
I really enjoyed this. Looking forward to more like it.
I really enjoyed this. Welcome to BP!
If this were true, why do so fewer catcher have TJ surgery?
Agreed. It is also augmented by the speed and location from one pitch to the next.
Sam - Your line about Apostle Paul, prison, and football is a huge leap. Paul was imprisoned for sharing the Gospel. He was wrongfully imprisoned and did not break the law. He was being persecuted for his faith in Christ. His books of the Bible are about being persecuted for preaching your faith, not for doing criminal acts.
Forgive my ignorance, but I thought I learned in contract law that any deal over a certain amount(like 1k or 10k) was not legally binding unless it was signed on paper. How could this verbal agreement between the Astros and Nix be seen as some type of legal trouble for the Astros?
Is Giovanni Urshela a worthwile add to an Indians trade?
Agreed, hope to see more of this down the road!
Lonnie Chisenhall says hello.
This was amazingly entertaining and informative!
MLB teams are playing games to win. They don't make these sacrifices at this level.
Halladay went to the minors to revamp his mechanics for a reason.
This announcement nearly leaves me speechless. Can't wait to see where this goes.
This was a great, informative piece.
But this was a shift for one player whom's tendencies could be seen with the naked eye. Teams are now defending based on the count, handedness of the pitcher, and what the batter does in that situation etc etc etc.
This probably weighs heavily on if Allen and Tavares are both healthy all year.
Yes, that is exactly what I am thinking of. I'd love to read what you are able to find on this.
I would also think that certain pitch type decision made my the pitcher/catcher would be based on how early or late the batter was to the previous pitch.
Can't wait for more of this Robert!
Loved this Ben.
Makes sense now. Thanks Ben.
Help me understand something. I the article you said "These results also make sense. A checked swing at a cutter or slider is more likely to be called a strike; a checked swing at a fastball is less likely to be called a strike."
Why does this make sense? What am I missing?
I really liked this article. I wonder what the defensive efficiency of the opposition has been this year compared to 2012. Maybe the defenses are just turning more balls in play into outs?
What about the % of GB's, FB's, and Lin drives by the starters?
Same, I still can't download.
Same problem for me as well.
Fantastic article Colin. Could not agree more.
Still no working for me.
I am having the same problems. It won't download from Itunes for me either.
It's astounding to me that a muli-million dollar company is not doing its best to adopt "best practices" of similar organizations. It's one thing to think you hire better employees, but if your methods are decades behind it won't matter.
Fwiw, I worked for the Tigers back in 2003 as an intern. Inge treated everyone there like they were his friends. So is he a nice guy? Heck yeah. I have no idea how much his niceness helps win baseball games though.
Awesome!! Can't wait to add this to my library.
I would also think that the expansive outfield with which the Tigers play could influence some of the numbers for Cabrera.
Couldn't agree more.
Jon Miller is the best.
I'm really pumped they will be doing a podcast together. Here's hoping its got prospects galore in it!
Doug, Thanks so much for posting this. Price's results are fascinating.
Any chance to see if this increased velocity went along with higher whiff rates and/or increased movement on the fastballs?
crows = crowd
I love the essays by Colin Wyers and Russell, but I am in agreement with the crows. Please go back to the old team essay format. It was the highlight of the annual for me.
Your attention to detail always astounds me. I can't get enough of this stuff.
Congratulations Kevin. I think it's safe to say that you have now become the most popular MLB front office member on the planet. You went from the go-to prospect guy in the industry, to hosting the podcast that all sports podcast try their best to emulate and fail (good enough that GM's listened to your show), and now to an amazing well deserved position with the Astros. I can only imagine more success will follow you where you go.
I hope my Indians never trade prospects to your squad because I know they will get the short end of the deal with you evaluating their prospects.
Thanks so much for your twitter answers and reading my podcast question way back.
Of course being an American makes a difference. Different countries present different cultures with different attitudes about work and wealth. I would imagine the environment at the work place in DR is much different than one in America.
There are only a handful of people in the DR that make more than what Castro does right now. Where as in America there are thousands of millionaires. Castro instead is a millionaire because he has God given athleticism and a scout found him while playing a game he enjoyed. Where would he have had time to learn the advantages and payoffs of hard work and discipline? What "storms" did he have to go through to make in baseball? Despite Castro's mental errors he's still playing everyday, and just got a big contract.
Cespedes is hardly a good comparison. He is 4 years older and grew up in an dictatorship. Individuals will risk their lives for a chance to escape. Certainly not something anyone would experience trying to get out of DR.
Richard - first of all. Harper isn't that comparable to Castro. Harper grew up in America with everyone around him telling him he was going to be great and had family around him preparing him for fame.
Pat - Comparing interns in STEM fields to Castro seems a bit strange. Individuals in the STEM fields tend to be those whom are stronger at academics and spend a majority of their collegiate time at the library or a lab. I would imagine their collegiate curriculum required lots of study time and discipline to avoid the temptations college offers.
Where as Castro, was never in a collegiate environment that required maturity and discipline. Instead he was thrown in the Major Leagues in a big market at 20 year olds making 400k a year. All because he had natural talent to hit a baseball.
I would imagine that whatever teaching he received while in DR is nowhere near the real world preparation one might get in a collegiate environment. Castro has to learn by the seat of his pants.
I don't understand why the league wouldn't let the Astros use the TV money to help pay down their debt. Wouldn't the Astros franchise value increase if they become free of debt?
How many 22 year olds have the kind of maturity needed to focus on their profession as hard as one whose older and wiser?
We're talking about someone whom just should be graduating college, give him a chance to grow up.
Fascinating stuff Doug.
I watched a friend of mine's 8-9 yr old play in a game a few weeks ago. It was terrible baseball, but it's hard to believe they can go from clueless and inconsistent to the like of a MLB caliber player.
This is fantastic. Reminds me a lot of the stuff you used to do for Baseball Daily Digest.
Knowing that you're not stopping just made my year. Thanks KG and JP.
Although your lengthy description had me worried.
Why wouldn't they get downgraded? A position player's value is based upon his offensive production relative to position. If Bogarts can't play SS he's going to need to hit even more to remain an elite prospect. The offensive level needed goes up even higher if he can't stay at 3b.
Therefore, if Bogarts was a SS his projected offensive skills would make him a considerable talent. But the further down the defensive spectrum he gets, the more he has to hit like Oscar Taveras to remain elite. So, this must mean that Bogarts' bat doesn't project as likely to become a first-division starter anymore if he can't play an elite defensive position.
Excellent follow-up . Read my mind!
While watching baseball we often hear announcers calling some pitchers deliveries as "effortless." I most recently heard it during the Mets broadcast while watching Matt Harvey's MLB debut.
Now, I realize that the announcer meant that his delivery doesn't appear to be violent, but it got me thinking.
We often hear about pitchers taking some off on some pitches to vary their velocity. My question is..how does a pitcher do that in regards to his delivery? I would imagine it would be quite difficult to slow down or vary your arm speed or momentum to change the velocity on a pitch.
Fantastic writeup as usual.
Where exactly would Castellanos have played if traded to the Marlins? 3b and the corner OF spots are blocked at the Major league level atm. I guess they could have moved Morrison to 1b, but that would make both players offensive expectations higher than what they are likely to produce.
Tom Underwood does not exist. It is Matt Underwood. Although I would imagine that Tom Underwood would be be better than Matt any day of the week.
Thank you. I tried to check before hand, but my search didn't prove as useful as I had hoped.
My second reason still applies.
I am non-denominational. It is a Christian faith that derives its practice purely from what is in the Bible.
Let me start off by saying that all of what you will see below is based on the following: if one prays to Jesus and you believe in the Gospel this means you are Christian regardless of denomination.
The reason I found the original comment offensive is this.
First of all, we have no idea what Appel prayed or even if he prayed to Jesus (we don't even know if he believes in Jesus coming down to earth and fulfilling the Gospel). We don't know what religion he is or how strongly he holds to his faith. So to just insert Jesus (like DJ did in his comment) is to use Jesus' name as some catch all used for any person's prayers. DJ could have inserted Jesus in his comment because when DJ prays, he prays to Jesus (which is a good thing), but that doesn't mean Appel believes in Jesus.
Secondly, regardless if one asks Jesus for help with life's decisions or not. Jesus does not make those decisions for anyone. It is that individual's person decision every time.
A person on earth that is Christian should be aiming to make the decision that will best glorify Jesus' name during his or her walk in life. When Jesus created Mark Appel in his mother's womb he gave Mark the athleticism and intelligence to have a chance to make this decision some day. At the time of the decision to go back to school or sign with the Pirates it was Mark's decision alone. If Mark was unclear what to do, the only thing prayer might have done was to fill Mark's head with words/experiences he had in the past that would help guide him.
Whether or not Appel finishes Stanford or signs a contract w/ the Pirates doesn't matter to Jesus. Jesus is concerned about Appel's heart. Did Mark make this decision based on finances/earthly possessions or based on doing what would best grow his faith and glorify Jesus? For example, if Mark becomes a professional athlete is he going to use that forum to let others know about Jesus (like a Tim Tebow) or is he going to use his fame and fortune for sinful purposes?
To say that because one prays to Jesus about a concern, and to simply state "then it was Jesus' decision" is wrong. This misrepresents the way how praying and having a relationship with Jesus work (according to the Bible). Many humans ask Jesus for something in their prayers. This does not mean that Jesus will give it to them. Jesus does not answer to us. We answer to Him.
Because this is a baseball forum I will not be commenting on this topic in this thread any longer. If my answer does not suffice to any of you, I can be found on twitter via the same username.
I have no idea if you're being sarcastic or not, but I don't want to bombard this forum with Christian doctrine.
You can find your answer in the first 4 books of the New Testament in any Christian Bible.
Very well thought out. Nicely said.
Apparently you don't understand how ones relationship with Jesus works. Your comment could not be more incorrect.
I see that this comment got a lot of positive feedback, but as someone whom is a Christian it is offensive (regardless if it was in jest or not).
Appel turned down the money, not Boras. Boras can tell him he can do better next year, but it is Appel's decision. It is never the agents.
Appel would have been able to go back to Stanford for free after his career was over regardless. All players taken in the draft are given $$$ to go to college when baseball is over.
To add onto Skaggs.
Doug - You mentioned that Skaggs has a closed stride and then directs his energy to the right of the plate. Is changing where a pitcher strides an easy fix or is that tough for a pitcher to learn? Is perhaps moving Skaggs to a different place on the rubber an option?
This is amazing stuff. The amount of swings Masterson gets out of the strikezone with his sinker is amazing. Is it at all possible to check how that fares against the league average?
Awesome thank you.
This is a great tool Dan. Can you please tell us how we can find this search tool when launching the BP "Home" page other than opening this article and clicking the link you provided?
I am having a tough time finding it.
Can you make it part of the statistics drop down menu links?
Does Dickey's mechanics lead himself to less strain on his shoulder/elbow? Is he putting less stress on those parts of his arm?
Obviously Dickey doesn't need torque like conventional throwers, but does his lack of torque give him an edge durability wise?
Here is what I was able to find at Joe Lefkowitz's site.
He's dieing against curves when facing righties.
I would think a team that could properly identify how well a prospect can identify the spin of a good breaking ball prior to investing first round money into a player would have a huge advantage.
I would interested to see the pitch fx data of the breaking balls Smoak has faced during his time in the majors and see how he's faired.
I cut myself off a bit there.
I meant to say that informing the teammates that their pitchers could pitch longer in games or start more games would debunk any criticism.
I think a simple explanation from the front office/manager and training staff about their plan with the pitchers would cease any teammate issues. I also think that informing the teammates that pitchers could pitch more often or throw more pitches in games.
I think Glenn's comments were fascinating. Adopting a specific pitch count or innings limit on a minor league pitcher seems much too rudimentary. It would be interesting if an organization started adopting more individualized pitching plans (maybe some do, but just don't publicize it).
I think teams just need to find ways to get the pitchers to be entirely honest with how they are feeling. As a team I would stress to these pitchers, that if you're honest with how you feel and we build a trust level with you - you can pitch as long as your arm feels good during a game.
Pitchers are going to recover more quickly or slowly than others. Strictly saying a pitcher will only start ever 5 days also seems too rudimentary. I would think it best if teams had a better handle on their starters recovery times, and use their starters accordingly.
No better story than #10. As a Clevelander I knew of the event, but did not know all of the details.
The more amazing thing about this play is that unlike other more common umpire mistakes where its about a play at a base and you have no proof other than what your eyes tell you.
This play offered the umpire a chance to ensure the fielder had the ball in his glove just like any other catch in the field of play. Not sure this is one of the worst calls ever, but it sure has a chance to be the laziest.
I wonder if Martin's mechanical problems are related to his fitness. Has Perez been sticking to his workout regiment? What about his diet? Has he been maintaining or increasing his strength through his progression in the minors? One might think he's 22, how can that be a problem. But your flexibility and conditioning as a 17 year old compared to a 22 year old can be vastly different.
Is Martin has lost some strength and endurance/conditioning that could very well contribute to his mechanical issues. Perez could be seen as tinkering because repeating his delivery might be more physically demanding than what it was when he was younger.
Thanks for including
R.J. Is there a way to check if this has been going on for multiple seasons? Is pitching Holiday inside something that has been going on for a while or is it a new trend for him this season.
That would be a nice piece of additional data for the article.
Enjoyed the read though R.J.
It all makes sense now. Thanks for clarifying.
I was thinking the same thing.
Well done Geoff.
To add onto point # 3. Is it possible he also made some adjustments to his approach (Joey bats' approach change comes to mind)? Is Fowler pulling the ball more often? Is he more successful handling the fastball inside?
That comment was posted prior to my morning coffee. I apologize for the grammatical errors.
My point is:
Subscruber - qwik - was asking if players stats on different teams (or teams' offenses as a whole) whom play in different offensive environments are worth the same. I was simply stating that their are all-in-one offensive stats are already created that compare players (or teams) using a neutral environment so we can determine whose offensive output is more valuable.
It wasn't a challenge. You said " Is a .275/.350/.500 slash line from a Yankee like a .250/.325/.425 slash line in Seattle? Is a 2.80 E.R.A. from an Oakland pitcher like a 3.80 E.R.A. from a Redsox's arm?"
Sites like BP have created stats to compare pitchers and hitters as if they were in a neutral environment. Allowing someone to give or take away credit due to different offensive environments.
There are several parks that inflate offense, and several that do the opposite.
This is why sites like BP create stats where you can compare players in a neutral environment.
I am fairly certain I yell at my tv a lot more often when my team jacks one over the fence than opposed to watching someone sprint around the bases.
You win games with runs, a homerun guarantees runs. I like them.
My first sentence should say "I would imagine a team whose offensive strategy is to work the count to try and find a pitch to drive" would hit more HR's.
I would imagine a team whose offensive strategy is to work the count to try and find a pitch to drive. Now, that doesn't always mean the hitter will successfully hit that drivable pitch somewhere productively, but it sure is hard to hit a homerun if you treat offense like Starlin Castro.
Do runners that aren't attempting to steal a base get bigger leads because a pitcher uses a slide step instead of a normal leg kick? I'm not sure that is true. How often are base runners watching the pitchers front leg when not planning on getting a good jump to steal?
I can see the argument during 3-2 counts.
Ok, one final inquiry. What in a pitcher's windup generates strong early momentum? Is there an MLB pitcher whom I can watch that generates strong early momentum?
I ask because just throwing a few pitches myself, it seems like something difficult to detect whether or not I am doing.
Shouldn't be surprised. Billy Beane at his best.
In the article you say "It is my contention that most pitchers would do better if they both A) went faster from the windup."
In your time at NPA, did they ever help a pitcher deliver the the ball more quickly from the windup? Did/could these mechanical tweaks help increase or decrease the pitchers torque/kinetic energy? Meaning, are there some pitchers whose windups, if quickened, have more or less velocity or movement at release?
Are there MLB teams out there that tell their pitchers to ditch the slide-step?
Really liked this. Looking forward to more.
Lots of good info here Kevin. Thanks for the writeup.
Agreed. I don't think Tyler Thornburg would get a very high mechanic GPA score from BP resident Doug Thorburn.
Interesting. I did not consider that. Thanks for the extra work on my question.
Help me understand something. Why is it that pitchers with smaller frames are seen as not having the body type to withstand 30 starts a year? If the shorter pitchers stay in great shape, wouldn't starting a full season be less stressful on the body than say someone with the extra pounds of a body type like David Wells or Sabathia?
What makes a taller pitcher have more stamina and durability to start 30 games?
FWIW, I am not being argumentative, just curious.
Great piece Colin. This was my 2nd read of it, and I think you make some excellent points.
Matt LaPorta, Bobby Crosby, Dexter Fowler
He lost a significant amount of weight while at SDSU.
Really good writing Ben. I enjoyed this a lot.
That makes a lot of sense. Thanks for the clarification Geoff.
The Indians almost had the same controversy once or twice, but it has always been rectified before a regular season began.
As long as Fox Sports is getting the revenue from the commercials it doesn't matter that your hometown sports team's channel is in the mid 600's on directv.
Fox Sports decides to pay for a contract to broadcast the Padres because Directv and other networks pay to carry it, and advertisers pay to have commercials during the broadcasts.
Maury - have the revenues for advertising and broadcast rights increases over the past 10 years?
Correct. Also jman, You have to remember Pujols was offered more money by other teams but turned it down to play with the Angels.
I wonder if Diamonds mechanics lead him to a long stride that has his release point closer to the plate. If so, the added finishing velocity that would certainly help him.
Insert awesome article cliche here.
Could not agree more. These are my favorite kind of Professor Parks pieces.
I see your point, but there are a lot of athletes in professional sports that never reach their potential because of their in-maturity, lack of desire to learn, substance abuse, or criminal activity.
Also, you have to keep mind that baseball is unlike any other professional sport. Nowhere else do you see an 18 year drafted that is not expected to help the team for 4-5 years (if not longer - just got to be put on 40-man by end of year 5). Even players with great makeup and good instincts might never have the talent to make it to the majors, but there is no way to know what a player can be without investing the resources on them in the draft.
The scout's comment on Lincecum is a bit troubling to me. Couldn't the Giants get motion analysis done on Timmy and use that to check his mechanics?
A fair point.
Seems suspect to tell the author he is incorrect without providing some sort of evidence or argument for your side.
"To my surprise, my research showed virtually no relationship between PITCHf/x spin rates and swing-through percentage. I was later cautioned by a front office member about the analytical value of PITCHf/x’s current spin rates."
I would imagine there i no relationship because there is so much that effects why a hitter swings and misses. The previous pitches in the at bat. The location of previous and current pitches. How the pitcher has set up the at bat. The count.
+ one million to this.
You do realize that with the new CBA, this is the last dealof this kind.
Great stuff, looking forward to part 2.
There would be very few pitches available on the 20 end of the scale because those pitchers would cease throwing it.
date should be data*
Great Stuff Ben. Lots of really good date to look at.
Can't imagine how bad the Indians' starting staff would look without Lowe's deadball version.
Based upon what you describe with McDonald, his ability to repeat his timing seems almost hard to believe.
What could be the cause for a pitcher improving his timing and maintaining it without tweaking his mechanics? Is it improved conditioning? Some other factors? Luck?
Are there any other pitchers you can think of that have seemingly strung together a career year simply by improved timing despite mechanics that say that should be very difficult to do?
Awesome article Ben.
Great stuff Doug. Thanks for doing this.
I think a team like the Giants with their current win now type roster would be much more interested in a proven Andrus than a projectable Profar.
Looks like it http://www.milb.com/milb/stats/stats.jsp?pos=LF&sid=milb&t=p_pbp&pid=543238
In regards to your first paragraph. Is it also possible that teams are unwilling to invest in this because the lack of job security that front office personnel tend to have? I'd imagine a study of this kind would take a lot of $$$ and even more time, and would be hard to follow through on?
However, this certainly seems like something Theo would (should?) do as his reign atop of the Cubs organization is still in its infancy.
Certainly would be cool if the Orioles' FO jumped on this with Rick Peterson involved.
We have talked before about how teams vary on their philosophies on pitching mechanics.
What do you think is on the horizon as far as how seriously teams connect pitching mechanics to injuries? Will there be a time when teams are staying away from drafting pitchers with personal signatures that are more prone to injuries?
Also, what is your take on pitchers like Nolan Ryan, Roger Clemens, and Randy Johnson? What was different about their mechanics that led to such long and successful careers? What is done differently nowadays that seemingly keeps the current game from developing pitchers of that stature and durability?
Certainly is encouraging to know Pecota expects the Indians to hold serve. Maybe someone should feed this information to the Indians' ticket office.
I think it is widely held that pitching has vastly improved over the past 10-20 years. Specifically when it comes to the amount of pitchers with elite velocity and stuff. How much of this can be attributed pitchers focusing more on conditioning and muscle strength?
However, does the extra strength/conditioning/flexibility lend itself to pitcher putting more stress on their arms because of the additional torque they are able to create due to this advanced fitness? Or does the added conditioning outweigh the injury risk caused by the additional torque?
I'd imagine this is different for every pitcher, but I'd like to hear your thoughts on it.
It's Nation Pitching Association. http://www.nationalpitching.net/
It seems I have misread your comments. Please excuse my criticism.
Great stuff Doug. I enjoyed all of the links as well.
Did you even read the article? Ben specifically used the photos to point out Ortiz being in better shape and changes he mad in his of hitting mechanics. The article also pointed out statistics that showed Ortiz has changed his approach.
Let's read the article before making criticism or comments.
Great stuff Ben. If only Hafner could have made such a recovery.
Loved this article R.J.
Not to mention that the AL east is growing tougher as a whole. Their competition is becoming like the AL East.
Please explain to me what hole Pujols filled on the Angels' roster? Trumbo and Morales wasn't good enough?
Also, you mentioned the Phillies have been good at knowing whom to keep? Are you ignoring Ryan Howard?
Howard is far from one of their two best position players, and there is no guarantee Utley will ever be the same. You are talking up their brand instead focusing on their expected performance.
There is no doubt that the Phillies income stream is tremendous and allows them to spend more than most teams in baseball. However, never does that mean they should operate their franchise inefficiently. They are still a business and should still try to operate like one.
There top three starters are amazing, but banking on them to carry their offense over the next few seasons is inherently risky due to the possibility of injuries and declining performance.
I would imagine that velocity increases have come from bigger emphasis on conditioning, and more educated coaching at a younger age.
Good point. It seems I am part of that crowd.
Great stuff Ben, but I've been thinking. Why are umpires influenced at all by the catcher's framing or movement behind the plate? The umpire is supposed to determine if the pitch was a ball or strike while it is crossing the plate. It would seem to me that umpire's should be ignoring what the catcher does, because the catcher is trying to deceive him.
One might say that pitchers are thrown hard and it's difficult for umpires to determine close pitches and sometimes rely on how the catcher is set up to help make a call. That however lends the umpires to be manipulated. I am not sure what the solution is to this, but it certainly seems to be putting the hitters at a disadvantage.
I think there needs to be a larger word limit on your articles. Edits should on be done for grammatical errors only. Keep the rest for the viewers :)
Your bringing up the #1 thing KG mentioned is the entire reason why I was terrified when I heard the trade. (I am a Clevelander - thus the extra interest in this article).
Any team in the Indians's revenue position has to develop cost controlled starting pitching. It is why the Rays have been so successful, and the Royals could be in trouble (because they could potentially have brought up their hitters too early)
I thought the Indians took an unnecessary risk when the trade was made. When they trade their starting pitching prospects they can't miss, or it will cost them several years of competitiveness. I think an alarm has to be going off when a competitive team in a weak division is willing to trade a former CY Young contender.
Just my 2 cents.
I would love for the Indians to sit him out for a few weeks or let him try things out in the minors. I think that the current standings are what keeping them from making such a drastic change. Even with Jimenez's struggles, he's not been bad enough to where I think they'd risk it. If the Indians were to be in the Twins' position I think it be a much easier corporate decision.
Can't put words to how much of what you said in this response fascinates me. I need to make a career change.
Doug - thanks for answering so many of these comments. They are truly enlightening. I look forward to Thursdays to read your newest insight.
Didn't Halladay go to the minors to totally rework his mechanics?
I can't speak for Doug. But the THT analysis doesn't break down why Ubaldo is having different arm action other than mentioning "In the Cleveland clip, he separates his pitching arm extremely early and leaves it to hang by his back pocket for four or five more frames than he did in Colorado. Look back at the full speed clip and see how the 2010 arm action is so much more athletic and smooth" Kyle Boddy notices a difference, but fails to explain why Ubaldo has been making this change.
I think Doug's article simply is much more thorough and better explains why Ubaldo isn't having the success he did back in 2010.
Have you had a chance to look at Ubaldo's mechanics during his few starts in Colorado in 2011? How often does a pitcher make such significant changes (by accident) like Ubaldo has?
I ask because a team trading a pitcher of Ubaldo's caliber with such a team friendly deal is unheard of. What is more likely? That the Rockies tried fixing his delivery to no avail, or simply didn't dig hard enough to discover Ubaldo's mechanic problems?
Also, FWIW. I really doubt the Indians would have made such a high risk trade if they hadn't already found mechanical flaws in Ubaldo prior to him joining the team.
The Indians have said that they have been working with Ubaldo on some mechanical changes (I don't know specifically what they have suggested. They said it has been a hard/slow transition for him. I'd imagine that his flexibility and conditioning like Doug suggests could be limiting Ubaldo's progress towards a better delivery.
I don't doubt Don's expertise, but the ability to command the ball and have good control comes down to repeating your delivery/timing etc.. Technique is only part of the equation.
This can be done instantaneously.
I am pretty sure fast ML left handed runners are in the 4.0-4.1 range. So Hamilton is better than that and bats right handed.
I could be off though.
Going to need an entirely new front office for your wish to come true.
Question for you. Do all Major League pitching coaches know enough about pitcher mechanics to help solve their pitchers timing and release point issues etc...? These kind of topics are never discussed (atleast in the media) when new pitching coaches are hired so it made me wonder.
Thanks for the endless stream of great analysis.
Should say missed this comment*
I somehow missed this article Doug. Thanks for the mention. Love your work.
You beat me to the punch.
2-15 should say 2015*
You are correct. Super Two Status means he will have 4 years of arbitration instead of the normal three.
Only thing I think we could be missing (I could be way off here) is when Harper will reach a full year's worth of service time. If Harper were called up in late June would he not in reality take 3.5 seasons before he'd be arbitration eligible?
For instance, if Harper were to be called up in the summer and only accumulate a half a season of service time. Does it not then take until the summer of 2-15 before he's reached 3 years of service time? Thus giving the Nationals that additional year of service time Kevin speaks of?
Great article Max.
Yah, he certainly was able to repeat his delivery much more frequently than his previous starts while restricting himself to the stretch.
Which I find a bit strange because a lot of starters struggle to get the same release point and command when they are forced to pitch from the stretch as opposed to the windup. Some starters are different pitchers (in a bad way) when they have to pitch from the stretch ie..the pitcher formerly known as Fausto Carmona.
Any thoughts on Darvish choosing to pitch exclusively from the stretch? Certainly seemed to help his command.
For Luigi, Lake County should read Single A and not AAA.
How exactly does a catcher whose made it to the Major Leagues not know how to frame pitches?
I can understand if the player began playing professionally at a different position (like Carlos Santana), but if you're catching professionally in the minors for 4 or 5 years + you would think it would become second nature. It's not like these guys are only catching balls during games. I'd assume they are working on framing when catching on starters' throw days prior to games.
Love this blog feature.
Another awesome article Doug.
Enjoyed this Adam. Looking forward to more.
This has always been a topic that is fascinating to me. can;t wait for more. I also can't believe I missed this the day it was published.
I really enjoyed this R.J. I'm looking forward to the next one.
This is more along the lines of what I was saying.
Thanks for posting this. Really looking forward to the DePo and roundtable chats. The wait is almost over!!
My only guess is that there are a lot of really strong RF out there that lowers how much Bautista is over an average RF.
Chisenhall was sent to AAA.
Sam, I think your take on this is refreshing and well thought out.
To throw in my two cents.
The world needs to stop thinking that their lives are defined by their work or accomplishments. Abreu's life and dignity/pride is defined by his life in baseball. He should be concerning himself with how he lives his life outside of the game. With his fame and wealth he has an opportunity to touch and positively influence many lives. What he does with those opportunities should be how he defines himself, and not a game all of us watch for entertainment.
Work is just a part of each of our lives, but it does not define the how great of man or woman that we are. We should not be proud that we have a nice job, but instead be proud of how we handle our lives when things aren't going well.
Velocity was mentioned in the article.
Agreed. Would love to have seen some pitch fx data mixed in.
I wasn't arguing, just looking to start a conversation. I hope you're right. The Twins could use a good team in their new ballpark.
Kevin, What kind of path do you expect for Lindor? Optimistically, could he be a September callup candidate in 2013?
Have you scene the Pecota projections for the Twins? Whom on their roster do you foresee exceeding their projections?
Some good points. ABout your final one -is there proof that stagnating on a bench makes you less effective when pushed into full time duty than a quadA player playing everyday in a lesser league?
Fantastic stuff Colin. I hope a lot of MLB FOP read this.
Agreed. Would love to see more like it.
Albert Belle, and Kenny Lofton?
No Kyle Blanks projected playing time in LF?
If you were a 17 year kid born in poverty would you be picky about whom signed you when his first paycheck is more than what people in his country make in a year?
Good Luck and Farewell. I hope KG lets you guest host the podcast again if Jason is unable to make it sometime.
They offered Pujols plenty. They just didn't want to sign him for a decade.
Perhaps, but I recall Acta deploring his best relievers in good leverage situations (I'm sure there were exceptions). Plus, they have a lot of depth in the pen. Certainly seems like their usage is less important than teams with thinner pens.
SG, why are you skeptical of the Indians bullpen? Their Pecota projections look fantastic.
I hope you got her a great gift for Valentines day
I don't believe that Belichek runs his team that way.
I meant to say more, but mis-clicked. I think the 2011 playoffs heightened the need for additional help on the tactical side more than ever. I hope teams are closer to utilizing your ideas than you expect. It is hard to believe that teams will spend hundreds of millions of dollars on players, but not take the extra time to ensure managers can make proper decisions in the most important games of the year.
I really liked this Ben.
No need to worry. They only have one more season in your division before they get to move the AL West
Well deserved. Maybe one of these days a former BP writer will even become a GM. #Onecandream.
The approach for this article was fantastic. Great job KG.
Awesome stuff Mike!
What material is a major league quality wallet made out of? Gold? Silk?
He no longer produces at a stellar rate.
I'm fairly certain the revenue from a new stadium will last more than one season if they are contenders. The Indians turned a new stadium and contention (beginning with a player's strike) for nearly a decade.
You really think of Reyes becomes a .750 OPS player there will be trade partners available when he's making over 17 million/yr?
Agreed. Kind of like a Collector's edition.
I think your suggestion is a great idea.
should says buy - not guy
I am goign to guy regardless, but I wouldn't had minded paying 10 bucks more the the "tome" look.
I would have loved to buy these two books with the bindings shown in the picture on the main page.
Reyes is a superstar when you look at just the SS position. There aren't 30 real SS's in the league. Reyes is a top 3 SS in the game right now.
Finally a comment worth reading for this post.
Congrats to Joe, and I am excited for more content from "Sarge"
Awesome stuff Mike.
Couldn't have said it better myself. Thanks Tango.
You are just pinpointing an example that makes your argument. There are plenty of longmen on teams that hardly ever get a chance to pitch.
MGL did his calculations based on an average reliever replacing the starter's 1.4ish innings the starter might have pitched if left to bat for himself. Boggs and McClellan are almost certainly near the league average.
Great stuff Jason.
Always thought Brian Kenny was one of the few baseball guys at ESPN worth listening too. Glad he's on MLB Network to do a show like this!
That may be true, but until the Twins start targeting higher ceiling starters, they will have a ceiling as an organization.
I'm sure they would, but this team has invested a lot of money in aging players with no hope of contending. I don't think rebuilding was in their agenda.
You're prob right. Indians are really going to need a stellar year from Ubaldo to even flirt with the AL Central title again.
Ben - Are the Indians picking up his option hoping there's still upside there? Hard to find 7 million 200 inning pitchers with upside.
Well done Jay. Sorry for your loss.
Great stuff Mike.
So the Rangers only scoring two runs wasn't part of the problem?
These series of articles are what get me through the off-season without any games.
Not a great start to a new Cubs era.
This situation is like playing a high stakes poker game where your opponent already knows your whole cards.
The Baron Davis led GS Warriors are a good example of your 2nd paragraph.
Also, if Leyland is only going to pull Verlander (seemingly blind to pitch count) only after he gives a 2 run homer inserting Coke at the beginning of the innings seems a an even better idea.
Not likely Coke would have done worse than Verlander in those 2/3 of an inning.
It seems really strange to me that Verlander was sent out to start the 8th after he already had thrown 120+ pitches. I know Coke is pretty horrible, but you got to imagine that he's better than Verlander at that lvl of fatigue. It's not as if Verlander was breezing through the first 7 innings, some of those were a lot of work.
I miss FJM.
More amazing stuffy Rany. I am now even more pumped my Indians drafted Lindor!
I be he could outhit his brother atm.
I like the idea behind your question, but aren't some draft picks paid more simply to pull them away from the players' desire to play football or go to college etc as opposed to just perceived talent level?
Harder - check out this link at beyond the boxscore. This will describe why the 5th hole is more important than the 3 hole.
I wonder if Verlander's regular season dominance was slightly deceiving given he got to face the AL Central most of the time?
Does WARP take into account strength of opposing batters? If not, did C.C. perhaps have a better year since he might have had to face tougher opposition?
Obviously, Verlander's posteseason opponents (the Yankees and Rangers) sport much better offenses than KC, CLE, MIN, and CHA.
I don't know how his starts lined up, but it would be interesting to look at.
This article was fantastic. Can't wait for part 2.
You ain't kidding about Kotsay's defense in center. Gomez or Morgan don't even need to dive for that ball.
Or Neifi Perez
Definitely down for this for all 30 teams as an offseason series.
However, I realize you also do the top 11 lists right after the WS. Not sure when you'd have to time - maybe a replacement for Kiss em Goodbye next year??
I would think doing these after your top 11's are published wouldn't work due to the FA signings etc..
I believe - It's like an aging veteran who's losing bat speed. They have to gear up for the fast ball to be able to turn on it, but then become horrible against breaking balls.
Love this piece. Would love too see it for the other open GM positions. Baltmore, LAA
Looking forward to this!
Kevin, loved the piece. Not sure if there were any, but if you do any future pieces like this I wouldn't mind seeing you add any players you might have projected greatness from that others did not.
Well done. I loved the political parallel you inserted in this piece.
Love these kind of articles Kevin. Thanks.
What exactly is a projection of a 5-hole hitter for Wallace? Is this a 5 hole hitter on the Yankees or the Astros?
Something that bothers me about the initial missed call on the line-out to Skip Schumacker was that they weren't allotted the double play when Skip threw to first to double up Polanco (whom was standing on second).
Jay - just to add to the discussion. Jeff Zimmerman posted some stats on Kimbrel in this link http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/index.php/braves-in-september/.
Looks like Kimbrel had a worse May than September.
If we could +1 Author's posts I would do so for this.
Couldn't agree more with your 2nd paragraph.
Great recap. Thanks for serving!
I apologize, I don't want to make this an argument of semantics. I appreciate what you do here at BP. I've been a subscriber for nearly a decade.
However, I think we can agree Venters and Kimbrel both struggled mightily down the stretch. I just don't think BP should be advocating fatigue the reason why, when you have some of the worlds best sabermetricians at your disposal whom could look at their pitch fx data and possibly break down a more scientific causation.
I'd also like to bring up that mental fatigue could present itself even if Kimbrel only pitched 50 games, or fewer innings. As much as I assume these guys love waking up in the morning playing a game for work. It's still work, and doing so for 180 some straight days has the propensity to be mentally exhausting.
I am just suggesting that saying Kimbrel is fatigued just because of how many times he pitched is a straw-man argument. How could you possibly know that Kimbrel's arm isn't strong enough to handle the workload given? How do we know that September wasn't a regression to the mean for the rookie?
What if Kimbrel was just mentally fatigued from his first full season in the bigs?
I recall this as well. Be interesting to look at Kimbrel's location.
Do we have any proof that Kimbrel's lack of success is due to overuse? Throwing 100mph usually indicates a fairly strong arm/hip rotation.
I'm pretty sure a 7-0 lead in the 8th inning would be safe with virtually any relievers. Especially against Tampa's offense.
Not sure pitching a bullpen game is a way to to stick it to the Red Sox. They shut them out for most of the game.
What manager in their right mind would pitch their aging closer in a meaningless game?
I like the recap Derek. I agree with everything you said here.
Mike - This is fascinating stuff. Can't wait for more like it. One of the best research pieces I've read on here in a while.
The Indians have fleeced the Mariners more than once already in trades. Do you really think they'll be looking to do more with the Tribe?
Good stuff Kevin. Thanks for the recap.
I think it is also important to keep in mind that with some pitchers they ask the catcher to put the glove where they want to ball to start and not where they want it to end up.
F. Lindor, does he have potentially a better glove at SS than Asdrubal Cabrera?
Loved the analysis RJ.
Great article Colin. Thanks
Kevin - any hangups with the Tribe signing Lindor?
Awesome stuff Jason. I love the narrative of your trip.
Regardless of whether you like the Yankees or not. The story still has applications to any team. Or if you hate the Yankees, does it not make you smile to see them run their operation inefficiently?
How often do you see a team stick with a big contract over a younger replacement? Sometimes I can see a smaller income team having being limited by a payroll mistake, but this is the Yankees. They can overlook their financial mistakes because of their cash flow. However, they are choosing to keep Nova and their other SP prospects in the minors for veterans.
It blows my mind how the Yankees will risk tons of $$$ on free agents, but are absolute nits when it comes to testing their home grown pitching talent.
A great article Steve, keep them coming!
If the Indians had starters that could strike people out I think Kipnis would had been up a month ago.
That is by far my favorite kind of rootbeer. Always have it in the house.
Awesome Stuff Kevin. Can't wait to see his debit and hear you and Jason discuss this on the podcast next week.
Keep your beer chilled this weekend!
I'm pretty sure there is enormous parity in the NFL.
He just got to AA
He was talking about 3 cg shutouts. He clarified that afterwards.
Carmona also has serious mechanical issues from the stretch. It's not just his mind that's the problem, he just can't generate the same kind of plane to the plate when he's pitching from the stretch.
Unlike the performance of Jeter and Posada that have already cost them games?
How much of a concern is it that someone whom is 15 years old whose growth plates have yet to fill up is throwing a breaking ball?
IIRC, Will Carroll was all over this in his "Saving the Pitcher."
Great stuff Thanks
With Phelps already called up, does that slow the call up of Kipnis at all? Or do the Indians plug Phelps into their current Adam Everett role but with more at bats?
So he's basically a good way to remove Maier from roster for someone with more upside. I'll take it.
Great stuff Steve thanks.
What kind of projection does David Lough have? 4th OF? Fringe starter?
Very informative stuff thanks!
Great Stuff Kevin. Great to hear such a well thought draft for the Tribe.
Will there be a podcast this week or did the draft push it back until next?
Pretty Awesome bat flip there.
Jason, this series is going to be awesome. This is a fantastic read. Can't wait for more
I don't think that's horrible compared to league average #'s for catchers.
Sabean needs to be fined for this imo.
I am absolutely with you on this Larry. Sabean shouldn't be doing this just because his best offensive player became affected.
How many weeks ago did this happen and Sabean is just now making this comment? He's seriously still this angry/upset over this?
Where is his professionalism or maturity?
I don't recall the Indians crying a river when Santana got leveled at the plate last year.
You are failing to realize that Larry's point is why didn't Sabean comment to MLB or threaten the runner whom collided with his catcher during these previous collisions?
Just because this time it happens to be to his superstar doesn't make his threat of Cousins or ridiculous comments more acceptable.
I'd be one of the 30
Loved the series Jason. Thanks for doing this, scouting stuff is fascinating.
Should say answering my question*
Thanks for answering my interview about the Twins pitching KG. Made my day.
Enjoyed this. Looking forward to more like it.
Great stuff. Very interesting findings.
Good stuff thanks.
Good Article. Madden is by far the most innovative of Major League managers. Fits well with how the organization itself runs its business.
Agreed. I love Jason Parks' articles as well.
I was absolutely shocked to see you include the Indians as a possible trade target for Doumit to fill in Santana's shoes. Especially since Santana's VORP is higher, and he's only making 300k.
Would be nice if they put this guy on MLB Tonight instead of someone like Plesac or Williams.
It is very curious that Posednik would turn down a $2 million option. Either stupidity on his part or of his agent for thinking he'd get more.
Maybe being able to go home to a model affects the brain?
Loved the article Jason. Can't wait for the additional pieces.
Apparently he had a sac fly or two.
I'd be interested to hear your response on this SG.
Also, keep in the mind only if the fielder is making a play on the ball is he allowed to block the plate. The Catcher should not have his foot or leg in front of the plate unless he has the ball already in position.
At no other base do you see such a consistently blatant attempt to block the base. The ability for the fielder to block the base is what needs to be removed. If a base is blocked, the fielder should be awarded if the runner slides on the obstructed body part like Clay suggested.
You are only allowed to take out the fielder if he blocks your basepath. The first baseman is not in the way on a force play.
Good to hear from you Mr. Davenport. Very nice well thought-out opinion on the rule.
Thanks Tom. Always enjoy your insight.
Love these recounts Jason. Please continue to include your trials with women.
She is hot, so that could be big news down there.
This point is meaningless when we are talking about he heart of an American League team batting order.
Everytime the Giants walked Bonds to get to Kent it helped increase their chance of scoring. It's in the book Richard mentions below.
I think you're failing to realize that Cabrera being walked increases the Tigers chances of scoring.
As far as I know there is nothing that is close on the horizon catching wise for the royals.
Myers was a Catcher last year, but they moved him to the OF to accommodate his hitting skills which were way ahead of his receiving skills.
I agree with this. Give Jeter his last hurrah, and start worrying about winning the year afterwards.
Should say (not being proactive)
A fair point about the availability of other SS options, but why not sign Jeter to a one year deal, and try grabbing someone like Reyes for future seasons? Or put a lesser body out there to start the season and trade for Reyes or another option? The Yankees seemingly have plenty of pitching in the minors to trade for such a player.
Perhaps the Yankees dug themselves a hole by being proactive in preparing a replacement for Jeter's obvious deteriorating skills.
I don't understand this HAD to sign Jeter mindset. This is strictly a media created idea. The Yankees don't need Jeter to put fans in the seats. If they were able to get someone like Lee in place of less offense/better defense at the SS that would certainly be forgivable by the fan base.
I find it hard to believe that the $51 million given to Jeter to stick around is worth more because of future mystic than if the team had a quality player at SS whom helped them win another WS or two in the next couple years.
I really don't think the Yankees would have any trouble branding their team if Jeter and Posada were left off the roster for 2011.
They could have offered even more to Cliff Lee, signed a defensive whiz at SS, and put Montero at DH. Problem solved.
Well done SG
Big Indians fan SG, but i liked the article.
Sounds like you need to pour a stronger pot of coffee
Loved the discussion on whether Hosmer should have been called up.
How did the Cake turn out?
Where is the week of May 8th's podcast? Can't wait!
Loved this Podcast. this pitching conversation was extremely informative and entertaining.
Love the Ken the FBI guy interview as well. Great ?'s
I don't think two weeks is nearly long enough to give any player a shot at the majors
Kevin - is Wil Myers now exclusively an outfielder in the KC system? Wasn't he listed as a catcher in your Royals Prospect list?
Loved the article Jason. Can't wait for the rest.
Great article Colin
I think you forgot to mention that the defense is also boosted by have Brantley and Sizemore in the outfield as well as Hannahan playing third.
You got Minnesota Twins comments in the Rays Hit List details.
Love these short analysis blog posts. Keep them coming.
Great recap. can't wait for more like this.
Christina, Congratulations on the career move. I've been reading Bpro since before it was a subscription based site. Have always enjoyed your contributions.
Ueck had some pretty funny lines in Major League 2. Particularly when he wakes up from being drunk during the game to announce Charlie Sheen and Omar epps boxing each other on the field.
It's not Patrick in the quote, it's Pepper - their Pitching coach.
"And the renovated Ed Smith got federal stimulus money as well,"
What a waste of our tax dollars.
Why is he projected to be 3-50 points lower on avg/obp/slugging?
Choo's projection looks really low.
Are his injuries keeping from the plate appearance threshold here?
Really enjoyed the interview. Thanks for this.
But I don't want to hijack this thread with politics.
Loved the snippet of the book. Can't wait to buy it.
I see your point and agree for the most part. I would hardly classify anyone on the hard left in office right now as smart.
My feelings exactly. Our gov't spends billions and trillions of dollars on projects and policies, yet I doubt anyone making the decisions can match the intelligence of Nate Silver.
Good Read. More of this please.
that should say *baseball* performance
I don't think as many fans felt the way you are thinking. I know Albert Belle was just as much as a trouble with the media as Bonds was. Heck, he even had troubles with some local kids. But there wasn't a day I didn't want to watch the man hit a baseball. I think most all of Cleveland would feel the same way. He got robbed of an MVP award, that was a landslide in his favor statistically because of his attitude. Since when did your attitude mean anything in regards to your basketball performance?
Lebron James gave Cleveland the rope-adope, and many people now dislike him even outside of the region. But that doesn't mean we don't want to watch him play the game.
I loved watching Bonds play. I don't think there's been an article by you that I've agreed more with. He was a phenomenal talent, and I wish I got to see him play another year or two.
I love your ideas for new topics Marc.
I believe the Indians Rotation the rest of the year will be: Carmona, Masterson, Talbot(barring injury), Gomez, and Tomlin. Perhaps some additional starts will be for Carrasco, Huff or Laffey if the Indians want to keep some pitchers' innings down.
Any comments on the Twins-Nats Deal?
If Alou catches that ball. Gonzalez doesn't have a play to botch.
See below. Didn't realize you type the answer in the column.
Sorry, thought you were giving the answer in the comments. I had only read the first paragraph before guessing the reason behind the inaccuracy of the study.
Did they focus on DL days only? Lots of injuries after the roster expansion aren't recorded like they are prior.
What a fantastic pitchers mind. Great Interview.
Can we do a Mike Hargrove All - Stars?
Get well soon.
I don't believe for a second McCarver was ever worth listening to.
Thanks for this Will. this is the most fascinating interview I've ever read at BP.
What is Toronto's hesitation in calling up Arencibia? We all know Buck is just a placeholder. Are they keeping his service time down for next year?
Enjoy your vacation Will.
Wouldn't the Phillies be better off signing Werth, and play Brown, Victorino, and Werth together?
Or is Ibanez signed through 2011?
Just to be nit-picky. A hitter can reach base via an error even if he strikes out via the dropped third strike.
Can't wait to see Santana vs. Strasburg on Sunday.
Sticking with the theme:
A Duck walks into an apothecary and says "Give me some chapstick, and put it on my bill"
Maybe I need my coffee this morning, but when I look at these location graphs I see the two seamer as being away from the right hander and in to the left handers. Am I looking at them wrong?
Love the article Will. One of my favorites.
Great interview. Thanks.
I'm usually too busy to surf much on the weekends. I usually read all the articles while I'm getting paid. This change is ideal for me.
Did you mean Alex Gordon's conversion from 3b to leftfielder?
The economy hasn't gotten better at all. Unemployment is higher than 2009. Attendance should be worse in 2010.
Gotta love that Kenny Lofton Heist.
Fantastic stuff Matt
He Smoaked that ball.
Can't wait for the book Joe.
The content comes out quick enough for my league.
Yes please write this.
Fantastic Article. Looking forward to more.
Love this piece. Can't wait for updates as the year progresses.
Skipping is a viable option.
Loved this kind of article. Keep em coming.
I think all of your suggestions would be great.
Whatever it is you decide to publish Joe, I'll be buying it.
I had to stay at the Tigertown dorms as an intern in 2003. They were pretty craptastic. In several occasions I saw insects/bugs crawling around almost as big as my fist.
Love it Marc.
I love the AL Central. The Indians need only half as many things to go right for them to win the division.
I loved the Razz reference. I think I'll be playing some of that online this weekend.
Fantastic Article. Can't wait to see more like it.
Let me add the answer that could be used for all Pujols' aches and pains. "He'll play through it and be the best hitter in the game regardless"
The Indians need very good starters. I doubt they can get that kind of talent from 3 star hitting prospects. Any of their pitching prospects aren't going to leave the organization because they need them to develop for the big league squad.
I would love to see stuff like this expanded upon in the book. http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=9566
The article about Bochy's misuse of Frew Lewis I think is a great depiction of how few managers know how to use their talent. Something that seems like such a simple concept to a BP reader, is missed by a man making 7 digits to get the most out of his talent.
Wasn't Clay consulting for a professional team? Did that expire?
yes yes yes to roundtable.
Amen to that.
I missed this. You are correct.
He's better than most on this list.
Marc , was it just a mistake omission?
Where is Sin Soo Choo on this list?
You will be missed Joe, Good luck with whatever life brings you next.
Well the closer they get to the Phillies and the Braves the better. If the Phillies health finally breaks, and the Braves keep giving away talent the Division could be New York's.
I think we should be more concerned with how easily the Yankees got an above average arm. I'm sure there would have been several other teams willing to take Vazquez at such a small prize to pay player wise.
Sipp is not a starter. I think you mean Carrasco, Sowers or Rondon.
Jay, just humor me here. How high on that list of good teams would the 100-44 Indians of the strike shortened season have been?
Especially with that outfield. He's going to do amazingly well there.
I helped run the Tiger's Fantasy camp back in 2003 while on an internship with them. Lolich was a blast.
I think this is a better idea than getting a veteran to play left field. We have a lot of ball in play pitchers. The more defense we can stick out there the better.
Mathematically, Punto's mistake cost his team more expectedruns than Holliday's error produced for the Dodgers.
That's warm in Cleveland :)
That statement wasn't faulting the Tigers. It was simply saying that the Tigers don't have an offensive star big enough to cover up their weak lineup.
Something Mauer seemingly was able to do.
I was thinking the exact same thing.
I love the rant. Technology is great isn't it?
Didn't Joe make a disclaimer at the beginning of the article stating that it's more about the analysis and not the prediction?
It always seems people whine on here because BP didn't say something nice about their team. I don't read BP because they do or do not pick my team to win. I read BP because they give SOOOO much better insight and analysis than the mainstream media. So enjoy reading an educated baseball analyst and relax.
So highly touted outfielders isn't something they have in common?
I'm pretty sure the Twins would be nowhere near 7th in the league if Morneau was gone all season. I think Joe is referencing their offense now without him.
Joe the format for your post is all screwy. Very difficult to read.
Asdrubal Cabrera has been a happy note for the Tribe as well.
When was Barry Bonds annoying other than to the media? I don't believe he had troubles exceeding expectations.
Shouldn't that be instant Message/text messaging speak? Or did you want your question to look like a "text/im" ?
Mark Shapiro of the Cleveland Indians has done this with the season ticket holders the past 2 years. It is filmed and aired on their TV affiliate STO.
The All star games I'll agree with you, but the WS wins haven't been dominated by the AL since the Yankees stopped winning them.
I'm pretty sure he's referring as to whom to stick in the Rays' outfield.
I was thinking the exact same thing. I don't think it would be an unreasonable assumption that the more throws to 1st a pitcher makes, the more likely the runner learns the pitchers move. Allowing him to confidently leave for 2nd, and steal it successfully.
I really wish I could know so little about properly evaluating productivity and still hold a fun, decent paying job. I'll save it for my dreams or jump into the broadcast booth.
The only thing with Santana is when he'll be ready for the majors. Marson should be ready for next year, while Santana's catching more than likely needs a bit more time to catch up to his hitting. But like mswain784 said, Santana is one of the best prospects in the game.
Any word on Jason Knapp's second start with the Captains?
Good to hear a kid so down to earth with his talent. I give props to the man for professing his faith.
Why is somehow snuck into getting Lee and Francisco. I know they didn't get any their top tier talent, but Carrasco and Knapp certainly have a lot upside that could make it a worthwile trade. Plus like Joe Sheehan said, Francisco is a 4th outfielder. With Choo, Sizemore, LaPorta, and Weglarz in the mix for next year. There's no need for him.
Agreed, the management's treatment of LaPorta is astounding. What good reason could they possibly offer for keeping Giminez up in his place when they have 2 full time catchers on the roster? Give Laporta the everyday duties in left and some time at first when Marte needs a break. Although Crowe has had a nice showing in his third time up, Laporta is the only prospect here. Let's let him get acclimated to the majors before 2010.
Also, why even bring up Toreagas? Just let Giminez be the back up catcher. They know Santana is the future there, why are they letting Giminez block Laporta's future.
I did an internship for the Tigers during Spring Training the year they lost 119 game when Cody got called up and met him and his fiancee at the time. Two great people. Cody is a great guy and a lucky man ;)
Are we seriously using ERA to defend a bullpen's effectiveness on this website?
I'm pretty sure he was referring to the Modern Era. Not the time before the Great Depression.
How good of a starter could Rondon be in the Majors?
I'm pretty sure there was no way to assume the bullpen would implode this badly. The offense has been stellar, and it's not like Shapiro has sat on his hands. He's tried everything to acquire new arms to help the pen.
Wedge on the other hand...can go.
I think it's safe to say that Valbuena could potentially be an above replacement level second baseman with a good stick. When all the Tribe gave up was a defensive CF. Which the Tribe has an abundance of. Sizemore, Crowe, and Brantley.
I believe Ibanez has to continue his pace to double his production. And last time I checked, we're only half way done. let's see if he cools down the 2nd half before calling him Manny Ramirez light.
Christina, I couldn't agree more with about the Indians' lack of creativity with their roster. Why they keep playing around with Francisco instead of using the injuries to give a real opportunity to LaPorta boggles my mind.
Why not keep the infield like it was at the beginning of the season until Cabrera gets back, slotting in regular LF duties for LaPorta?
Yah, not playing Upton consistently to start the season was a shocking move to say the least.
Any news on Hafner's shoulder?
Go rent My Cousin Vinny
Love the article, can't wait to see more like it.
Yes, because whether McDonald played the game or not was the only factor leading to that win or loss.
I'm sure the opponent and how the pitching fared had a lot more to do with the Jays getting a win or loss.
How about the best offense in the Division? I know it's early, but Martinez and Hafner look like they did then the Indians took Boston to the limit in the ALCS. Don't forget this team also was great in the 2nd half without Martinez, Hafner, OR Sabathia. Find me a better offensive core in the Central than Sizemore, Martinez, and Hafner.
Thome, Dye, Konerko...no, way too old.
Mauer, Morneau....Cuddyer? Maybe, but Mauer has to be heatlhy.
KC - maybe in a year or 2.
Cabrera, Granderson, Ordonez..maybe, but their pitching is the worst in the division.
You are also forgetting a full year of Choo, along with LaPorta waiting in AAA.
I personally don't see a whole lot wrong with Lee's pitching performance. A lot of his strikes are being called balls(according to MLB Gameday) which obviously is going to lead to him falling behind in the count. So he's had to groove more pitches than he'd like to, and even the Blue Jays lineup can hit those.
I watched Lee on MLB Gameday during Monday's game. There were several occasions where Lee was throwing the ball in the strike zone according to pitch fx/gameday and he was down 2-0 according to the umpire. It is sure hard to induce groundballs when he's getting squeezed and has to come in with the fastball.
Does the Twins expected record take into account Mauer and Baker being on the DL?
I would be interested in knowing if you considered that even though teams are freezing their prices to keep gate receipt losses to a minimum, but I would imagine that teams will instead increase prices in food and souvenirs to cover for that loss.
I was for an Intern for the Tigers in 2003 back in College. I'd call him Mr. Kaline too.
Jeff Clement..really? The Mariners are so close to championship caliber lineup that they can't play one of their better hitting prospects?
I'm pretty sure most teams try to avoid surgery at all costs.
I believe Scranton Wilkes-Barre wouldn't mind having his services.
Loved the article Marc, keep them coming.
Nate - Can't wait to read your articles this season!
Yah, what kind of drop off would it be from Sizemore to Brantley or Crowe?
I would imagine that since the NFL has a salary cap and that they share all of their revenue evenly amongst the teams, that the economy has a lesser effect on their budgets.
Great article Gary.
Although I agree that Wieters won\'t see that many PA\'s, He also won\'t have a futile pitcher hitting in the 9 hole ruining his chances.
Really, you 100% positive that it\'s zero %?
Because it\'s not likely Martinez\'s bat is worth sticking at first base full time. And the Indians have PLENTY of offensive first baseman in the system.
I would have to say the same in regards to Travis Hafner. If\'s he\'s back to his pre-broken wrist/hit in head with pitches production. That\'s 3-5 additional wins the Indians would be receiving.
Is the naming agreement between the Mets and Citi that easy to dissolve? Does the naming rights contract between the Mets and Citi have some type of buyout penalty built it in? I can\'t imagine that it\'s as easy as the government saying, \"Hey, we gave you tax payer dollars, void any legally signed contracts you have made that we don\'t see as viable to your financial success\".
Where would Peralta fit in if he\'s moved to third?
If the Blue Jays were in the Central they\'d be a lock for the playoffs. It\'s all about logistics here, the Indians play in the right division. No one is referring to these Indians as the late 90s teams, but they are good enough to take advantage of holes in the other Central teams\' rosters.
The Indians may not have any superstars besides Sizemore, but they have more depth at a lot of positions on the diamond. If someone falters, they have a lot of options to plug the hole with in the lineup, bullpen and rotation. I don\'t think anyone would say the Tribe is a dominant favorite in the Central, but no one in that division did anything this off season to make Cleveland getting into the playoffs a remote possibility either.
Holiday? Is he some type of rookie or something?? LOL JK
Great article. This is some awesome data.
Can\'t wait to watch this kid play.
Although I agree with you Billy, I am sure Joe will be front and center on this page when the baseball season is full bore in late February.
I would like to hear from Barry Bonds as well.
Well said Derek!
I wouldn\'t mind seeing it go Upton, Pena, Longoria and then Burrel. It keeps the TTO guys apart, and sticks a lefty in the middle of their heart of the order.
Well done. I believe Larry lives in Chardon, OH. Where I grew up and my mom still lives!
Pecota as an Iphone app would be awesome!
I opened up the comments field to complain about that same comment.
And as a die hard Indians fan. I saw thank you Minaya. But I sure wish Shapiro would have stuck with Phillips a little bit longer. Peralta, Cabrera, Phillips, and Beau Mills/Martinez would be a very nice young infield.
Offer good players arbitration = Expensive 1 yr rental of a good player. Which would more than likely lead to wins = more cash flow. More cash flow = better production than other alternatives and pays for his better production with gate receipts.
If the player declines = Early draft pics = Possibly 6 years of cheap talented ball players.
Joe is absolutely right. The Yankess and Phillies have no business not offering arbitration, and give credit to LA and MILW for doing so.
The Indians would be a good one too.
I liked the article. It would be nice if the Dodgers would just release Jones like you mentioned.
The point is Howard wasn\'t even the best player on his team. Utley was by far the superior player.
One of my favorite columns of yours ever Joe. Nice Work.
Sorry, should say fetching* instead of \"could fetch\".
What kind of third baseman do you see F. Gutierrez could fetch on the market?
Cleveland Pizza feed imo.
I would be very interested in hearing from Christina on this as well. On a side note, aren\'t the A\'s getting a new stadium sometime soon? (I could be wrong, I haven\'t had my coffee yet this morning).
Rays over-rated? What about a full year of David Price starting? Another year of of improvement from Upton and Longoria? Get real, unless a catastrophe happens, the Rays are nowhere near over rated. I\'m not sure how a good year by Hinske matters whatsoever here. That\'s an easily replaceable talent. And good bullpens are built from the scrap heap. Don\'t see why continuing to do so by the Rays is going to make their bullpen decline enough for it to be a problem especially with their defense.
Yankees, 6/225, 12/19
Detroit would never trade Granderson. Who would they put in CF that\'s better?
Me too, I am glad you\'re sticking around Joe. Great article.
Indians: Pray Pronk gets back his mojo.
So we are delaying a baseball game because a Senator paid to be on TV for a half an hour? I\'m sure Pennsylvania, a big swing state, will love the fact that their possible Phillies\' championship is being put off because a Presidential candidate paid for advertising. That will get him votes. Maybe McCain should speak in Philly tomorrow and get the crowd chanting \"Start at 8, start at 8, we want more time tonight to celebrate!\" I\'d love to check the swing on Silver\'s website after that.
Maybe if they delayed the ad campaign, Obama could use the extra time to publicly release his birth certificate?
As opposed to as soaked as Gerald Laird\'s gear gets working behind the plate on a 100 degree day in Arlington?
Joe is absolutely right on this. Momentum is just hogwash.
Is that like Hammels saying - \"Here\'s my fastball, can\'t touch this?\"
It\'s also called CTRL-P folks. Works great.
Signing Teixeira when this team is a couple years from contention would be a waste of resources in my opinion.
Make that Zach Jackson*
Zack Johnson has been starting for the Indians for a few weeks now Joe. He was in the LaPorta/C.C. deal.