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It's great to see an article in BP with math I can't follow again. I've truly missed it. Two things are missing - the confusing chart showing the overall results and the listing of pichers who best fit the category. What's the point of creating the formula without sharing what was learned from the results (in terms of naming guys going 100 pitches who would be more useful going 60)? I did enjoy the article. Maybe it's the first of a multipart series and I missed that disclaimer.
Grichuk hitting the longest homerun in stadium history where a juiced Mark McGwire used to play should answer any outstanding questions about whether we're using a rabbit ball this year.
Loved the Hawk Harrelson comment.
4.47 Newcomb is in Atlanta now.
Since Cespedes clearly has the arm for RF wouldn't the Mets be better off playing him there with Granderson in CF? Who would likely be worse defensively in CF?
Not one of the Angels tandem of <span class="playerdef"><a href="http://www.baseballprospectus.com/player_search.php?search_name=Carlos+Perez">Carlos Perez</a></span> / <span class="playerdef"><a href="http://www.baseballprospectus.com/card/card.php?id=43102">Geovany Soto</a></span> makes the Top 50?
Quite a collection of #1 draft picks here. Nine of the Top Ten (including compensation picks). Granted that many of them seem to be high floor guys. There's no commodity as tantalizing as a Starting Pitcher prospect with the potential to breakout and the Braves have proven quite adept in the past at identifying who to trade and who to keep. Doing so again could help them fill out the rest of the roster.
Isn't he aging out of his 20's not his 30's?
Under Fantasy Impact, you have the Dodgers new players under the Reds header and the Reds under the Dodgers.
Arte Moreno seems like a wonderful human being, doesn't he?
I find this article and the previous one on batting the pitcher 8th really interesting even if the outcome is - it depends, or there's no significant difference among the options. It's something we all think about when we're watching a game. More please. One that comes to mind for me is, I think managers may be sacrificing with the pitcher too often (other than the obvious man on first, no out situation). First and second, one out with the pitcher batting - does the change in run expectancy to 2nd and 3rd with two out outweigh the 10% chance (?) that the average pitcher will drive in a run (and save an out) if they hit away? I prefer NL baseball without the DH and these kinds of questions are a big reason why. These kinds of studies point out the fallacy of the pro-DH argument that there's no additional strategy in the pitcher batting because you're going to bunt almost every time.
I knew it was going to be bad but I looked anyway. I see a season's worth of 3-2 losses. Only 2 regulars with an OBP north of .320. Chris Johnson at clean-up and BJ Upton hitting 5th. 74 wins seems optimistic. If PECOTA isn't right on the pitching it could be extremely ugly. Not only a bad team, but games that aren't fun to watch with no exciting prospects to see develop. Heavy Sigh!
Ross has reported denied the report that he's reached agreement with the Padres, at least for now.
Great article! Worthy of being the intro to the Royals section in the next annual. Would love to see other articles like this one in the future including teams whose plans didn't work out. So much luck is involved in the postseason. If the Royals didn't overcome the 7-3 defict beginning in the 8th inning of the Wild Card play-in game this story would likely have had a much different tone.
Hasn't Shoemaker been out of action for while? He may be out of synch or too strong or any of the other excuses people make for someone pitching on less or more than regular rest.
Very interesting article and beautifully thought out.
In analyzing the leverage that Aiken had, shouldn't the fairly well known fact that the Nix signing wouldn't happen without Aiken signing have given Aiken and Close additional leverage have been mentioned in the article? Perhaps it was considered too obvious to point out. It also speaks to the unusual coincidence that Close represented both players. While a conflict of interest couldn't have been anticipated before the draft played out, should Close have withdrawn as Nix's advisor after the linkage became clear? While I have no reason to doubt Close's ethics, that would be of little solace were I in the position of Nix and his parents in the event of a significant injury during his year in Juco, two months in the Independent League or his three years at UCLA. Knowing that the man who served as the advisor on the deal whose implosion eliminated the financial security associated with my $1.5 M offer was the same man charged with representing my best interests would be tough to live with. It's certainly possible that representing the best interests of both Aiken and Nix would have been at cross purposes in this situation.
The Nationals comment made me LOL. Well done!
Wouldn't it be easier for Bosio to help Straily in the majors? Just sour grapes on my part that he apparently won't be slipped immediately into the rotation as I assumed when I first heard the deal.
Tom Hart, sideline reporter on the Braves telecasts, quoted your information stat for stat on Thursday afternoon's Braves-Rockies broadcast attributing the information to Baseball Prospectus. His segment included replays of the throw. Pretty good given that the Braves weren't playing the A's and it wasn't related to anything going on with the Braves.
Agreed! Glad there's a place for people who can commiserate with me on Kyle Blanks being among the Padres final cuts (for Xavier Nady and Tommy Medica?) and whatever Walt Weiss is doing to avoid starting Corey Dickerson in CF (are we looking at the exceedingly rare 4-player platoon?).
A top three of Lee, Hamels and Burnett is 'pretty decent'? In the sense that it's easily among the five best in the majors and the key strength of the team - yeah, I guess that's pretty decent.
Can you provide more perspective on what you see for Jacob Turner in 2014? Seeing him ranked below Hechavarria does not scream 'breakout'.
Goforth's Realistic Role and OFP Role may be reversed.
If Grady Sizemore has, indeed, been heaving for the past two seasons I feel even more sorry for him than I already did. :-)
Wojo, why didn't Maddox make your Top Ten? Here in Atlanta, we're mad that he's already been left off one announced ballot. What's your story?
More career value: Bogaerts or Puig?
John, who edits your stuff? Leyland quotes - "they have a little more significant this time of year"; "with those mega-scoreboards..you can the score, the time and the temperature.."; "You don't a pennant in the wintertime.". And this from you - '...so many people tabbing the Tigers are the heavy favorites in the AL Central.' Those are all in the first 50% of the article. It should just take someone a few minutes to catch these obvious things before they are posted. You're a good writer and I enjoy reading you but I see this kind of stuff in your articles more than others. Even the great ones are edited. We appreciate your experience, access to insiders and your way of framing detailed concepts in a straightforward manner. Someone else can worry about the verb tenses and omitted words - the ability to do that is common compared to what you bring to the table.
Was disappointed that you didn't mention anything about Cedar Rapids' Austin Wood who had a very good start on Sunday. Maybe in the next Ten Pack?
Where is Mike Gonzalez in the book? He threw over 50 innings and is not in the index or the TEX section.
You seem a little higher on Randall Delgado than many other folks ranking prospects. Do you feel that command is an underrated attribute in the scouting community as opposed to more visually apparent skills like speed, movement, size, etc?
If eligible, would Brandon Crawford have been 3 Stars or 2? Can he ultimately hold the SS job as an 8th place hitter or are we due for a big dose of Theriot?
I'm assuming from your comments that Belt would be rated as a '5' on your stars scale if he were eligible. Correct? How many HRs at his peak - 25 with a .300 avg?
I'm as guilty as anyone of over-identifying with players on my team and I would certainly agree that he's not a keeper in any format, but referring to Sean Rodriguez as 'inept' seemed overly harsh. His positional flexibiity, ability to hammer lefties (for a middle infielder) and speed make him valuable in many roles particularly in these days of teams carrying 11 or 12 pitchers. I certainly understand that he has more value in real baseball than fantasy and if you want to advise me to 'get a life', I won't argue.
Can you share a few thoughts on Eric Thames who didn't make the deep list of Top 10 under 25? If you were to assign stars to Henderson Alvarez would he be a 4 or a 5?
Eight Men Out is my favorite. The last scene with Shoeless Joe playing under an alias in an independent league because he loved the game so much says something about how many of us feel about baseball. It also answers the question of what Charlie Sheen would have been like if he was a young man in the early 1900s - famous beyond what his talent would indicate, morally bankrupt, out for only himself and an unintentional cautionary tale for others. In other words, pretty much the same thing as today.
It's more likely a result of him pitching too many innings to qualify as a prospect anymore.
How much farther down on the Top 10 age 25 and younger until we'd hit Brad Hand? Does he have more room to grow (other than the fact that LHPs will always get more chances)?
As a Braves fan, I couldn't agree with you more. I appreciate your nod to the fact that we don't have as much information as Fredi does, but Heyward is capable of carrying a team when hot and can be the Braves second best hitter, after McCann, based on last year and his room for continued growth. I trust Prado to get in done in the play-offs and Bourne has given the Braves a dimension they sorely needed. It sure seems that Heyward has a better chance of fixing what's wrong and gaining confidence by playing everyday (particularly in the low stress situation the Braves find themselves in) than sitting on the bench in favor of Diaz or Constanza. I think that Fredi's already made whatever point he was trying to make by sitting Heyward (playing time is earned on the field not through potential?) and it's time to keep him on the field. Despite this situation and hitting Alex Gonzalez and his .259 OBP higher than 8th with some regularity, I think Fredi's done a great job this year stepping into a difficult situation following Bobby Cox. Moving Chipper out of the #3 or #4 spot was long overdue and he handled it without causing a ripple. He also recognized he was on the verge of burning out the Big Three in the bullpen and has scaled back on their usuage post All-Star break.
Wouldn't it be considered a conflict of interest to have Carlos Guillen manage the White Sox while on the DL in Detroit?
In regards to Bedard, PECOTA is projecting that Stephen Strasbug will throw 122 innings this year and have the best WHIP among SPs. I don't say this to critisize PECOTA, just to point out that it isn't designed to predict whether a player will stay healthy or not, just what his performance will look like if he does. I'm concerned that Bedard's shoulder is shredded and am not sure I can afford to waste a roster spot on him.
I think part of the criteria here is teams that may have missed the play-offs by failing to fix a hole in the line-up. The thinking may be that the Indians weren't going to make the play-offs by fixing one or two of these positions.
Texas 'officialized' the deals... Not sure it's a real word but I like it in this context.
I got 'Weaver on Strategy'. I'm enjoying it, but it seems a dated (published 1997, I think)in hindsight when read in a post-Bill James world. So much of what was considered outside the box thinking when Weaver was managing is accepted practice today, particularly among the sabermetrically-inclined. It's pretty amazing, though, that he was able to develop all his theories (hit-and-run is to be avoided at all costs, bunting and stealing are one-run strategies to be only used when you're nearly certain that one run will win the game, batting guys who get on base at the top of the batting order even if they don't have high batting averages, etc.) from observation and trial & error. I grew up an Orioles fan and it's peppered with references to Rich Coggins, Sammy Stewart, Tom Shopay and other names that are very familiar to me. What's also funny to read is that anybody with a fastball above 90 was considered a power pitcher. Not sure if it's conditioning or radar gun technology but something has certainly changed in the last 20 years.
The Yankees picked twice. These guys will have to be on the major league roster or the ML DL or offered back to the team they chose them from, right? Hard to see the Yankees having two roster spots to spare for Rule 5 guys. I don't imagine the Turpen pick will wind up as much of a jab if they have to offer him back to Boston at a $25K loss.
4 years and $80 million for Jeter's decline years is meeting in the middle? Wow. I was thinking they might overpay him at $12 million for 3 years due to the history and to capture his march to 3,000 hits. I guess I'll stick to my day job.
Interesting article. I don't agree that CF results will be similar, though. A full year of McLouth should be superior to last year's two months of an injured Jordan Schafer doing his Doug Flynn impersonation. I think 1B is the big question mark. Hinske will be exposed if he gets too much playing time. Glaus could hit 30 HRs and be the right-handed hitter that balances the line-up or he could wash out in 30 days and I don't like their fallback options. Freddie Freeman didn't look ready last year and may need all of this year in the minors.
Just looking at the Catchers ranked by Upside score:
Brian McCann (26 years old) has significantly more upside than Joe Mauer?
Carlos Santana (24 years old), Chris Ianetta (27), and Tyler Flowers (24) have more upside than Matt Wieters(24)?
Lou Marson (24) has more upside than Buster Posey (23)?
Boog, as a Braves fan, I'm going to miss you all year this year. When I'm watching a game and Chip is doing play-by-play, I'll miss you twice as much.
I'm embarrassed to say that this may already be available but I just don't now where to find it on the site. If I'm preparing for a fantasy draft, evaluating a fantasy trade, thinking about remaining free agents that might be available for my favorite MLB team, etc., I'd like to be able to type the player's name into a search function and get all recent (12 mos?) comments on this player by web site contributors (not including user comments like this one). Did Christina analyze their value in a TA column, did Kevin mention them (or someone who could potentially take their place) in a Top 11, did Will comment about an injury issue, did Marc include them in a fantasy ranking story, etc. And by the way, thanks for asking.
Christina, it's nice to be at that time of year again where you've sent the book to the printer and can focus once again on web content. In both the quality of your writing and the volume of your recent updates, your enjoyment of what you do shines through and is much appreciated. Thanks for making the winter a little shorter for those of us who hang on every small scrap of baseball news to get us through the dark time that is basketball and hockey season.
I hope that a new contract is executed shortly to the satisfaction of both BP and Mr. Sheehan. I agree with others that he's the best writer on the site and that whether I'm on board with his view or not, it's always thought-provoking. I won't be leaving BP thanks to Kahrl, Goldstein and Perrato, but Mr. Sheehan's contribution would certainly be missed by this long-time subscriber. Good luck, Joe, and let us know where you land.
Can't believe it's already been 3 years. I look forward to reading your column every Wed and Sunday and really appreciate your contribution to BP. Thanks.
Frank Wren spoke briefly on Atlanta sports talk radio yesterday and basically said, "Stay tuned". (By the way, he was calling from a family snorkeling trip in the Carribean. As much as we'd all like to have the chance to be a GM, these guys never get any real time away.) As a Braves fan, if this deal isn't part of something else that's already in place, I don't like the deal. Per KG, Vizcaino is 3 years away from contributing on the MLB level. I can't help but think that Vazquez would have brought more than Melky and a lottery ticket with a little more patience. If the reason to deal him now was based on a need to acquire cash or pieces for an impending deal that addresses the team's real needs then we can happily re-evaluate. If it was made to acquire bargaining chips for something that might turn up later in the offseason, I think it was a poor deal.
As good as Vizcaino may be some day, this deal is a mistake for Atlanta if they don't already have a deal (trade or free agent signing) in place to use the money they saved today to improve the 2010 squad with the big bat in LF or 1B that they sorely need.
I don't think Brian Kopec is confused about what a Top 11 list is, he's just trying to make the tired point that for a team without a cap on salary, the best prospects available to them are the best players on other teams that could be made available. As we've seen, it's more likely that the Yankees best prospects will become trading chips than they will become Yankees.
The biggest problem I see with national baseball broadcasts and many regional ones is that the announcers spend so little time actually talking about the game we're watching. It comes across to me as if the producers don't feel a single game can hold the average fan's attention so they need to talk about anything else - the current controversy in baseball, the upcoming schedule, the trivia question of the day, what the base coach was like as a player, whether the alternate road jerseys should become the standard ones, how the press box was better in the old stadium, whether the DH should be used in NL stadiums for interleague games, etc. etc. I think it's unlikely that someone who isn't interested in the game at hand would tune in just to be entertained by this drivel.
Feel like sharing, maybe in a blog post, your thoughts on the comparative value of what the Blue Jays reportedly requested for Halliday from the Phils and what they reportedly countered with? How much difference do you feel there is between these packages?
Anxiously awaiting news on Kevin Slowey...
S/b Jered Weaver not Jeff in the next to last paragraph.
I especially liked the comments around Overbay's avg vs. CIN. This is one of my pet peeves in the coverage of baseball these days. It's like when they say that (made-up) Craig Biggio is one of two major leaguers to ever have two seasons with 50 2Bs and 20 SBs while winning a Gold Glove in the same year and the other is Willie Mays. Are they trying to say that Biggio is the second best player in history or that we found a combination of largely unrelated items that make Biggio look good?
The topic is interesting but I don't think it was a good choice given this week's assignment. The inability to bring it to the present by referencing the decline of the Trinity and our current environment of HanRam and the 29 Dwarfs was too restrictive. Is the fact that he mentioned a few active shortstops in the last third of the article considered 'cheating' or was it just a reflection of being hamstrung by the restrictions? I voted thumbs down on this one.
I agree. This was the first article I clicked on because I found the subject matter very interesting. I think you spent too much time trying to explain the statistical conversions, particularly since the eras are so different as to make comparisons very sketchy. I would have liked to see you spend more words around your conclusion and perhaps even relate the Babe's situation to Micah Owings who has generated a lot of chatter lately primarily due to the Reds' offensive woes. Still, I voted thumbs up since I was interested in the topic learned something I didn't know before about the Babe's being unlikely to be a standout if he continued pitching fulltime.
As a Braves' fan, I follow the Brian McCann situation pretty closely. I can't find the source now but I think I read a story or a post that seemed to indicate that the Braves had to select from a list of available DL conditions and 'infection' sounded better than 'strain', 'sore', 'broken', etc.. Almost as if there's a drop down menu when you fill in the DL template and you have choose from one of the options (and body parts) listed. I'm sure you have access to better sources than what I'm reading but I haven't heard anyone from the Braves or McCann himself quoted using the term 'infection' to describe his condition.
I appreciate your honesty and openness about your struggle. I hope this column gets forwarded to a number of people who can benefit by knowing that they're not alone. The picture you've painted is grim and I empathize with you. It does really make you think about people like Phelps who were afflicted during a time when there was little knowledge of these types of disorders in the medical community and there were no medicines or treatments (electroshock and lobotomy were the two main options available at that time to try to improve patients considered to have a mental defect) to help with the symptoms. To have to try to deal with these types of feelings in a public forum and during a time when physically healthy people of the same age were going to fight the 'war to end all wars' must have been extremely difficult. I don't mention this to discount in any way what you are living with; just as a nod of appreciation for the age we're living in and the progress yet to be made both in medical options available and in the public perception of these types of illnesses.
Will, I saw a report that Cory Wade got a cortisone shot the other day. My draft is tomorrow. How much should I downgrade him? Thanks, kb
My issue is not with those voters who cast a virtually meaningless vote for some down ballot candidate. If I had a career that met the minimum requirements to get on the ballot, it would be an embarassment to get zero votes. I seem to remember someone (Mark Langston?) campaigning for at least one writer to vote for him in his first (and only) year of eligibility to avoid putting up a goose egg. My issue is with the majority of voters this year who didn\'t think that Tim Raines was worthy of their vote.