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Holy moly--three Angels made the list!!!
+1 for Andy Marte
The Giants comment is pure gold!
Some of these comments had me laughing out loud--great job!
You jinxed it.
On the field injuries? What about the patrons/parking lots/satellites in low-Earth-orbit that get destroyed by his home runs?
No Matt Thasis?
(concerned Angel fan)...
This breaks my heart. My 2 year old son and I cheer on the Angels, and his joy in the game is a great source of happiness for me. I can't imagine going through what you have, or life without my son. You have my condolences, and best wishes for the days ahead. Peace be with your son, and thanks for writing a very brave, intensely personal, and wonderful article.
Thanks for the reply!
I was at the game as well--did you happen to get a look at the hulking DH who hit the mammoth <span class="statdef"><a href="http://www.baseballprospectus.com/glossary/index.php?search=HR" onmouseover="doTooltip(event, jpfl_getStat('HR'))" onmouseout="hideTip()">HR</span></a> in the second inning for UCSB? I don't recall his name, but it got out of Blair in a a big hurry. Any thoughts there?
About halfway through the Calica video, you can hear a little kid say, "This game is garbage." Hilarious!
Any way you break it down, the Angels still have no one. I hate the prospects list this year.
At what point would we say Weaver is a Jamie Moyer-type? Success with a fastball that belongs in a slow-pitch softball...
I'm curious why there's been no TA for the Baldoquin signing.
LOL re: the Angels huge hole in CF
98 wins?!?! WOOT!
Please, dear God--let the 2015-2020 versions of this list not contain any Angels...
Great article Geoff--love the Jobu reference.
Hamilton versus DeShields--who's the better fantasy baseball pickup?
Never knew that about Jimmy D--good article!
Disagree with the Artful Dodger. I hate the Giants more than I love perfection. I'd probably say about a 3. Maybe 2.5.
BTW, not sure if it is worse than the Giants beating the Dodgers to go to the WS, but Bonds breaking the single season HR record against the Dodgers with not one but TWO HRs in the game is a 1 for me.
My team gave him the contract 'amazin,' but I'm not in the regret stage yet. I believe he's pressing to make something happen: Expanding his strike zone, taking swings where his back foot comes flying off the ground rather then stay planted, and hitting a ton of groundballs to the left side of the infield. All of it tells me he's pressing--and who wouldn't be? Last year he's trying to prove he's worth a ton of money. This year, cash in hand, he's trying to prove he's worth it. I'll be worried if this is what he looks like at the end of May--but I bet we see Pujols being Pujols sooner rather then later.
The difference between Mattingly's back and Pee Wee's war service is that the former is a baseball-related matter and the latter is not. Staying healthy is a key baseball skill. Avoiding planet consuming wars isn't.
Furthermore, this isn't a conversation about who accumulated the most production at the position, it is about who was the best at the position. There's a difference. Pee Wee was an All-Star before he left for the war and was an All-Star when he came back. It isn't like his clearly established skill level somehow evaporated during his 3 years in the military. As such, "giving credit" to Pee Wee for his war years is just a way to normalize the career statistics between him and non-WWII era players for the purposes of comparing their true talent level.
I totally agree. Furthermore, Randy Johnson is probably the most underrated great pitcher of all time. For whatever reason, he gets left behind in all the conversations about all-time great pitchers, but he's arguably one of the 3 best starting pitchers in the post-war era. He was far more durable than people think, he won 5 Cy Youngs (more than anyone other than Clemens), won 303 games, and is 2nd on the all-time K list. And his nickname is the Big Unit.
He's 2nd only to Clemens in career PWARP (90.1 vs 100.5), despite having pitched nearly 800 innings less than Clemens. If you account for the fact that Clemens may have been PED-assisted, it's easy to imagine a little less effectiveness and/or endurance could make that PWARP gap nearly disappear. And Randy's way ahead of 3rd place by that measure.
I love me some Maddux and Pedro, Seaver's a stud, Nolan can't be overlooked, and Clemens seems to have the best claim to the top post-war spot. But Randy may well be second to none.
The pick should still be A-Rod. He moved off of SS, not because he couldn't play the position anymore, but for PR reasons. He was almost certainly a better fielding SS than Jeter for much (or even most) of A-Rod's time with the Yankees. For the sake of argument, let's assume A-Rod played SS for his first 3 years with the Yanks (through his age-30 season) and add his games at 3B in those years to his career SS games. If you do that, A-Rod would have 1739 games at SS and would place in the all-time top 40 of games played at SS. That's more than several HOF'ers, including Arky Vaughan, Phil Rizzuto, and Lou Boudreau. And it's only 1 season of SS away from Honus Wagner and 2 seasons away from Reese.
If A-Rod went to any other team than the Yankees, odds are he would have played SS well into his 30s. If we're going to credit Reese for his special circumstance of WWII (as we should), we should also take into account the quirk of A-Rod being traded to the Yankees during Jeter's reign as King of NYC.
Furthermore, it's clear that A-Rod has performed at a much higher level than Reese or Ripken. Using BB-REF's WAR, A-Rod averaged 6.49 WAR per 660 PAs for his career and 7.08 WAR as a SS, 2+ wins more than either Pee Wee or Cal. By WARP, A-Rod averaged 6.51 WARP (per 660 PAs) for his career and 6.79 WARP during his years as a SS. That just blows Pee Wee and Ripken out of the water. Even if you don't give credit to A-Rod for his years playing out of position due to PR reasons, he was so superior during the fewer years he was at SS that arguably his peak value over a shorter time should rank him ahead of the other two. 12 years of being great vs 15-18 years of being very good.
If you just look strictly at what players actually did during their careers, ignoring mitigating circumstances, then you can certainly argue Ripken or Pee Wee over A-Rod for this all-time list. But if you asked 1000 knowledgeable baseball fans, players, historians, and executives to assemble a team from post-WWII players, knowing that they'll get to deploy those players how they want for their careers, I'm guessing 70% of them would choose A-Rod.
Pee Wee vs Ripken is a fun debate, but really no matter how you slice it, it's a debate over who's the 2nd best SS since WWII.
Thanks Joe for the honest and earnest response. While it used to be an automatic thing, I've finally decided today to renew my subscription for another year. I know there are lot of people at BP who are hard at work to improve the site, but I'll be watching closely to see if BP really does make some meaningful changes over the next year. Like you, I want to see the execution of the website match the historical quality of BP's writing and analysis, and I hope that it does in the near future.
Definitely agree. A very enjoyable and provocative article.
Sooner. If Ellis had made those quotes publicly before a game today, he'd have been warned by the MLB office and tossed after the first HBP.
Still having trouble seeing the tables on Kindle Android. I deleted the book and re-downloaded it and still no luck. Very annoying not to be able to see the tables (I only see raw data in a column). More frustrating is that I can see a random table or two and it looks easy to read... please help!
Ahh...I stand corrected. My bad.
That said, it is still incredibly odd (and confusing) for BP to list the same player twice on the depth chart with all the same stats except for ONE category. I kinda get the reasoning about zeroing out GS when the player shows up in the relief section of the depth charts, but why bother? Bard's 1 projected SV shows up in his stat line as the projected 5th starter, so why not show his 19 projected GS when he's listed in relief too? Totally half-baked.
As for not complaining about a service until I understand what they are showing me, that's kinda the point, isn't it? BP has some of the most confusing, counter-intuitive, hard-to-use, and inconsistent statistics services of any major baseball website (stathead or conventional). I know they're working to improve things, but it is still maddening.
Hell, Daniel Bard and the depth charts is a perfect microcosm. First, the issue with QS. Second, if you click on Bard, his player card lists him as having pitched 146 IP in 2011 in the bio box. Third, the Advanced section lists an extra line for 2007 that doesn't appear under Recent Performance. Fourth, the default sort order for Advanced has his 2009 MLB line on top of his AAA line whereas most of the time the website has the highest level on the bottom, just like it does for his 2009 under Recent Performance. Fifth, the minor league team abbreviations are not consistent between Advanced and Recent Performance. Sixth, going back to the depth chart homepage, it says teams are ranked by projected 2012 record but all the teams have asterisks instead of actual projected records. Seventh, nowhere on the depth chart homepage does it explain why there's all those asterisks instead of actual numbers. Eight, the team pages average up the triple slash stats for the offense, but why not ERA (or FIP or something) for the pitching staff?
These are all little things when taken individually, but when you add them up, you get a giant pile of sloppy, lazy, or poorly executed tools. And this is just the tip of the iceberg. For instance, why does the News and Updates page for PFM list updates only from 2011? Either update the page for 2012 or just take it down. Why do the player cards have a completely different layout from the rest of the site? Is it supposed to look and feel like a totally different website?
These sorts of things are just maddening, especially for longtime paying customers.
What is the deal with the IP projections for Daniel Bard and Alfredo Aceves? 133 and 144, respectively. Even more weird, both are projected for 0 starts but 11 quality starts. What the heck?
These are the sorts of errors that constantly crop up in BP's PECOTA/fantasy tools and make people look elsewhere for their saber/fantasy fix...
Anyone else having trouble with the way the kindle displays the statistical info for each player? Mine shows it as a vertical row of headers, followed by a vertical row of stats. Though not impossible to interpret, it is difficult...
Amazon sent me an email saying my pre-ordered copy has shipped and should be delivered tomorrow, February 17.
I take Friedman as my top choice, though I'd be happy with almost anyone they've mentioned (besides Minaya and DiPoto--we fleeced DiPoto in the Harne trade when he was temp GM at AZ).
Sound of an Angel fan hearing that Minaya is being interviewed for the job
Please no...dear god, no......
I can honestly say: I don't miss Will Carrol one bit. Nice job guys!
I have the same thing. I'm using Google Chrome, if that matters at all.
I do like the WARP overview, but it'd be nice to still have the old skills graph somewhere too.
Wow. PECOTA has mad love for the Dodgers rotation and overall pitching. Lowest RA in the league and only behind Oakland in the majors. Wish I could say I'm as confident about that projection (or the 740 innings of sub-3.50 ERA pitching projected for the first 4 starters).
Thanks for the report Kev--as a huge Angels fan, I'm hoping Brandon Wood gets things sorted out down in AZ. To that end, is the quality of play in the AFL roughly equivalent to AAA? I just want to know how excited to get about his recent success...
The search function on the website is totally inadequate and cumbersome to use. At the least, it should include blog and chat content. And why not have a search box on every page, rather than having to click through to the special search page?
I second all of those rec's.
I agree, particularly with #1 and #2. And something better has to be done with integrating the blog with the regular features and functions of the website.
I agree. The blog seems to be set up like any other web publishing site rather than an actual blog.
Plus, it is incredibly frustrating to search for content on the blogs. The regular search function doesn't do it, and the search box next to the blog doesn't seem to work well at all either.
Completely agree with #2. It is a joke how bad the BP player cards are. There's a lot of good stuff on there, like chat and article mentions linked directly from the player card, but page is poorly laid out, hard to use, and riddled with errors.
It is BRUTALLY hard to find SIERA quickly. If BP wants that to become the stat de rigueur for pitchers, it should be ridiculously simple to pull up.
Holy love of god, the website is SO much faster now. It had gotten so slow, I was near the point of all but abandoning BP. Thanks BP for doing what it takes to keep your readers happy!
Minor quibble: Kotchman came up with the Angels, not the Braves, and isn't exactly a "quality" major leaguer.
Great column. The storytelling and human interest combined with saber insight is both refreshing and (sadly) very unique for BP.
Can we assume you mean LF, CF, and RF in the games played in '09 sections for the M's and A's?
Thanks for that Will! I'm ol' "Rubber Arm" comes back strong for the Halos as the primary setup man!
Why the hate for the Angels?