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Some clown really likes trolling you, Richard.
I was attempting to agree with your defense against the Slaten argument, BTW.
If Morris gets in, it's going to be great when they keep Clemens out--even with the best steroids on the planet, Morris wouldn't be half the pitcher Clemens was.
ERA+ is based on ERA, which is a rather flawed statistic.
Another top reliever, or at least several guys with potential, need to be added to the Sox bullpen, since it's almost entirely bereft of arms. More moves have to be in the offing.
Not to mention that he won't be anywhere near those numbers in five or six years.
Do we assume that Pujols 2011 was a fluke?
True--but nobody was going to Marlins games even when they were contending.
Seriously. You'd think the person would be ecstatic enough to upthumb everything.
Still think the Marlins will find a way to weasel out of the big contract later, but I don't see how they'll do it.
Regardless, this contract will probably bite them in the ass. Even though the usual greedy legislators let them steal a new park, the revenue that it will generate won't last much beyond the first season. Yet they'll have Reyes for five years after that. And it's far from a sure thing that they'll get a big boost at the gate. If there are any sure things about Florida, it's that Floridians don't watch their local baseball teams. The Marlins play to an empty house every night. Tampa? Nobody showed up when they were dominant.
I predict the contract will be a disaster after year one.
To me there is a non-trivial chance Kemp tanks, now that he has his shiny new contract. He's already had effort and interest problems in his career.
What happened to Tillman, anyway, to knock him off the lists?
If Snow had made the Top 11, would his Ephemera have been "Born out of wedlock--don't tell Cersei"?
Somebody's a hockey fan.
Boston, for one. So much for TEH GREAT FARM.
It's up to the clubs whether or not they follow slot. So it'd be whoever makes the decision--could be the owner.
Last I'd heard he was having serious health problems. Good to see him back.
Yay more Future Shock.
Who is this GM that can do 90-95% of Theo's job?
That's good to hear, Kevin. You're a source I trust, so it means more when you call something credible.
Yeah, there's really nothing on Lucchino here other than conjecture. What I'd like to see is evidence. Sure, there's plenty of anecdotes, but I'd like something harder to go on before I demonize Lucchino.
If the teams themselves value liner rate over hits, it's high time traditionalists at least consider new metrics.
You also have Sale, who stopped being a prospect almost immediately.
Nobody knows. He was facing living pitching recently, but just to watch (not swing). It'll probably be a while before anybody is sure of anything. Brain surgeries are like that.
Gotta agree with this. I don't remember seeing Belnome's name before. Not that he should be on the list in this article, but I'm surprised the numbers haven't gotten more attention.
Yay Deadspin trolling. I can't go to bed, someone on the Internet is wrong.
God, those Twinkies are nuts.
Yeah, but did they draft him as part of a change in philosophy?
Nobody wants that. They seem to want five Greg Maddux-es, when it takes a lifetime to find one.
When will the Twins realize that a rotation full of #4 starters isn't a worthy aspiration?
Actually, he really needs that stache...the no-facial hair look really doesn't work for him.
Speaking as a layman, and based on what he's done, Wallace right now looks like a 40, which isn't good. I have an even less-educated opinion about DeVoss, but he looks like one of your 20s.
What's Brett Wallace's power on the scouting scale? Did he lose some between being drafted and the bigs?
Wondering the same thing.
(Hopefully) amusing thought exercise: Is Gamel worse at 3B than Montero is at C?
My Comcast tech the other day claimed to be both a Red Sox and Yankees fan. I suspect he's a candidate to violate whichever rules he hasn't already violated.
An fun and well-written piece. We stat-nerds appreciate the humor!
I'm just thinking of his general foolishness and overreactions in the media (e.g. Adam Rubin).
Better than Minaya, who actually *was* in puberty.
I'm too busy telling Canadians on the opposite coast to chill about the Stanley Cup...
Hey, it works for the Marlins...and annoys everyone else.
Also, on strikeout temper-tantrums, there's Kevin Youkilis, who got into a shoving match with Manny Ramirez over Youk's bitching and moaning. (Youk was subsequently told to tone it down)
If Harper's not a bad teammate, just an on-field complainer about umps and the other team, it'll be fine for him.
My first thought was Albert Belle, but he was four years older than Harper when he hit AA.
Still love Harper, though I haven't seen him yet. I hope to rectify that when he comes to Portland in a couple weeks. Thus far, he hasn't pulled anything that'd I'd consider a red flag.
Going forward: Giavotella or Jason Kipnis?
Oh, and I think people throw decoy balls so they can keep the souvenir one, as opposed to the one they bought at Wal-Mart.
Pretty amusing stuff. Thanks.
The Strasburg thing strikes me as a manufactured story (with Rob Dibble as usual doing much of the manufacturing). What on earth is wrong with bringing a guy back when he's ready? If he's not ready, don't bring him back. Duh. The last thing we need is another version of the bleeping Joba Rules.
Well, FWIW, Pimentel had a good start after a demotion and Vitek's been generally lousy for a first-round pick. But it's great to see writeups on everybody.
Almost wonder if Kevin put in so many Sox just to spite the people who claim he has East Coast bias...
The four guys Boston traded for Bedard weren't going to be part of the big club's plans. Maybe it's too much to give up, but prices were really high this year.
I get this deal for everyone but the Dodgers. Unless they're so screwed that they're intending to put all three of Federowicz, Fife, and Rodriguez onto the 25-man next year.
And before him, they had Daric Barton. Is any hitter going to pan out for the A's?
Is there any evidence that this approach messes up pitchers in any way? Thinking about Rick Porcello...
1. No--but I understand why such calls are made. They happen at 2B all the time, when a runner goes in spikes-first.
2. Absolutely not.
3. Lugo indicates that he is out. But his reaction should have ABSOLUTELY NO BEARING on the call or the replay. Otherwise we're reducing close calls to acting jobs. I can't convey this strongly enough.
4. Yes--though only because I believe Lugo felt it.
5. Leave the grades private. There's enough pressure on umps as it is. Also, Meals should be commended for having superior positioning.
6. Leave everything as it. It adds flavor to the game.
If anything Meals should be commended for his judgment and positioning on the home plate call.
Now, about his strike zone...
No, he means that he committed a few posters on here who have insinuated recently that he has East Coast Bias...
Along similar lines, here's a breakdown by team of today's list (fyi, snark incoming):
Red Sox 3
Looks like Kevin switched allegiances (yet again!) and is now a staunch Reds loyalist!
Snider in center? He's not a good corner OF.
Future Shock is usually slim pickin's for Red Sox prospects.
Nah. Odor's whole name works. Now, if he were named Zolio Suave or something....
I'll tell you one thing: I didn't draft the clown who thinks that idle comments should be de-repped.
Maybe not. Without plate discipline you won't get pitches to hit...
I have Kipnis in my dynasty league. And Lorenzo Cain. Sigh.
On here, people have long since abandoned the notion of "contributing to the discussion" and have instead gone with a "like/dislike" model. Not that I'm surprised.
I'm no scout or analyst, but with those strikeout/walk rates, Chris Davis looks like the good Adam Dunn without the walks. He probably won't amount to much unless he can actually play multiple positions well.
There's just not that many journalists of your quality worth following.
Thanks Kevin. Can they clone you?
“Look, when else are they going to be in first place in late July?”
I'd go with "next year".
"Jesus Montero is the obvious pick here as he almost went to Seattle last year for Cliff Lee, but the thought that he has no future in New York is a false one. Both Jorge Posada and Russell Martin are free agents at the end of the year, leaving both the catching and designated hitter jobs available."
Does this imply that Montero's defense has improved, or merely that the Yankees might try him at catcher anyway if they keep him?
I love hearing about stuff like this. I take it the comment about the Red Sox not wanting to take on future salary comes from somebody in the know...Kuroda would be an excellent fit. Any idea what the Dodgers are asking for (apart from, obviously, salary relief)?
I'd have thought the analysis of Altuve would have been more up-to-date, given that Kevin writes something about him just about every day.
Thanks for the writeup on Chiang, Kevin. While it's disappointing to hear that none of the tools stand out, it's great to have the additional information.
"Six-foot-seven, 175 pound". Good lord, no wonder he's had shoulder problems. I expect his arm to completely fall off.
Anything on Chih-Hsien Chiang? The Sea Dogs' outfielder is tearing it up after being pretty bad up to this point in his career? Change in approach/stance?
Let's see your degree.
Any rumors about the Red Sox medical staff being inferior to the rest of the league? They've sure looked bad very publicly the past couple years.
The Orioles? Who ducks the Orioles?
The clock on Chris Carter probably began before Barton went down.
I was about to ding him for being old, but then I looked him up and discovered he's 17. And he played for the same team LAST year at 16. Talk about a young kid with promise.
I'd call it a small sample size. Wait and see.
Thanks Jay. I ask because, if they are, it would imply that the PED narrative is accurate, given that at least some PEDs combat fatigue, and fatigue is what often leads to injury.
Are injuries in general up this year?
Another Future Shock without glowing Red Sox farmhands. :( For a team that is repeated lauded for both its draft strategy and picks, they really haven't gotten a lot of results. Has anyone attempted to figure out why this is the case? Simply bad luck, or something to do with the process?
Does Storen still have setup-man stuff, succeeding on command and intelligence, or has it improved since he reached the majors?
When/if he signs, it'll be referred to as a Swihart deal.
Oh...and is Blake Swihart's last name pronounced like "sweetheart"?
Kevin, you were spot-on on the Red Sox. Nice work.
Thanks for the replies Kevin, even if the answers leave me unhappy about my farm system (grumble).
First though was Vladimir Guerrero, though he had a slightly better walk rate and definitely wasn't a bad-body type.
I'd say Pablo Sandoval has to be in the discussion. BTW, BBRef has one of his nicknames as "The Round Mound of Pound". Seriously? Somebody actually calls him that?
Still love this stuff.
Any guess on who might be the Red Sox top prospect at year's end (and, if possible, how many stars)?
I've heard a lot about how unliked Doumit is, but I've never heard why. Can you give some examples?
Wondering what the Red Sox saw in Kolbrin Vitek to make him a first-rounder. He's really shown just about nothing other than patience, and it was seen as a somewhat odd pick given his lack of defensive value.
Makes me wonder if Carl leans backward as he starts his swing.
Snider right now is following the Brandon Wood trajectory. Did anyone fault the Angels for not seeing Wood through his protracted slumps?
This might be it. I do have the book!
"Rich" has little do with payroll disparities in baseball. The payroll disparities are the result of what an owner is WILLING to spend...not how much the owner can afford. When he was alive, Carl Pohlad was noted by Forbes as being the richest owner in MLB. His Twins routinely were middle of the pack or worse in payroll.
So, without tenure, they'd be like...any other at-will employee. Every other at-will employee has to watch what they say or do, in all ways, lest they get fired for "no reason".
Wasn't there a study run here at one point that said that team payroll didn't corrolate to winning all that well?
Normally I'd agree, but the Red Sox and the Yankees compete against each other. As a Red Sox fan, it is compelling to watch them have to deal with a team with an even bigger payroll all year.
If the Yankees weren't in the division, I agree that watching the Red Sox, the way they're spending now, would be a lot less compelling. But I also believe that if every team in the division (and to a lesser extent MLB) had, say, $80M payrolls, the Red Sox wouldn't massively overspend that number. They wouldn't need to, in order to field a strong club.
Maybe not, but why draw unnecessary attention to them? It's not like Hughes or Chamberlain need the extra publicity in NY, right???
I agree with everything here, except...never underestimate the capacity of human beings to act the fool. This is, after all, the same org that came up with the Joba Rules, and, later, the Hughes Rules.
Steven, has anyone ever asked Komminsk what he thinks as far as why he couldn't get it done?
I totally remember Oddibe's hype. It was insane. People were buying his Topps rookie cards en masse.
The real question is whether Moore knows what to do with prospects or young players. His history has involved burying them at times.
What do you see as his rate stats if/when he breaks out? The walk rate is still really low--for me his breakout would look a lot like Vlad Guerrero's: high average, plenty of power, and walks simply because nobody wants to pitch to him.
Actually, if this is snark, well done.
Might I suggest a Good Humor pop?
Also, there are a LOT of guys who are on wrong teams. It's as though the offseason of trades never happened.
Is the Adrian Gonzalez projection adjusted for Petco and not Fenway? .880 OPS seems awfully low for Boston.
I'm a little confused by some of the conclusions. For example, if Doubront has a low-90s fastball, four solid offerings total, and is a lefty, how does that translate to "back-end starter"?
FWIW, Vinnie Pestano and Robbie Weinhardt.
I meant "two-star-prospect". Bad language on my part.
Flowers did have a bad year last year, but isn't he likely to rebound from that given how good his bat has been in previous years?
Which is why I have a hard time seeing Flowers as a worse-than-number-two prospect, unless he's now Montero-level bad defensively.
WOW. I didn't see this before, but I absolutely love it.
Whither Danny Espinosa?
Though it could also be that offense as a whole was way down in 2010.
Oh--it wasn't clear to me, sorry. In that case, PECOTA seems to have overrated a lot of guys on this list for 2010....
Is PECOTA really optimistic this year across the board? I counted only THREE players in this list for whom PECOTA doesn't expect improvement (and often MAJOR improvement).
On Barton: "he's going to show more average and power in future years"
I find this a little strange. He's been projected for power ever since he was drafted, yet he's never shown much more than doubles power anywhere, and he'll be 26 partway through the 2011 season.
I thought first-base prospects absolutely had to mash in order to be five-star guys. You've said that often. Barton doesn't, never has, and the chances of his hitting his power potential seem to be getting smaller and smaller. How is Barton worth five stars, then?
Thanks for compiling the list, Joe!
This stuff is pretty fun. One thought: Would it be worthwhile to post the date on which each list is posted? Some of the lists (especially the MiLB lists) look markedly different than the others.
Love to know which elitist thought my comment "didn't contribute to the discussion."
BA hasn't done a Top 100 prospect list for this year - where is he listed as a top 100 prospect for 2011?
Which scouting reports? From whom?
You have the makings of a cogent argument now.
Look, I'm not saying Kevin is right. But I'm saying that he has a much greater chance to be right than you, until further notice of your experience evaluating prospects.
a) Flores' career hasn't happened yet.
b) We have to go by the information at hand, which is to say, stats and scouting reports. Are you well-versed on both?
c) How do you come to the conclusion that Flores "has an upside of Miguel Cabrera"?
You're better informed than the guy who does this for a living? I'd love to see that.
Not 100% sure, but I believe Kevin said before this year's rankings that the ranking were going to be tougher overall.
Interesting that Gomez is ahead of him, then.
That's possible, but Matsui's knees are so bad I suspect his signing is a hedge against Carter, not vice versa. But my guess is they'll play whoever hits.
And at 40 he'll still be hitting .290/.380/.520.
Carter would seem to have a shot at DH, which, given the reports on his defense, wouldn't be a bad place for him.
$12M per for five years for a bad-defender with old-player skills? Hmmm.
Hmmmm....so peak depends more on games played than age? I didn't know that.
Why does this matter?
Really? Crawford is younger and a hell of a lot more durable.
My only problem with this is that Werth will at best be well past his peak by then, and might well have gone back to his injury-riddled ways.
This is at least non-complete BS. Teams drive up the value of free agents all the time. And PR is a HUGE part of any team's strategy. I'm sure the Rangers want Lee back--but not at a ridiculous price. This may well be their strategy.
Heh. You're pretty much right anyway. But I do think there's some value in being perceived as "a team that spends money". It helps get free agents to sign with you when they wouldn't, otherwise. Of course, actually spending the money helps.
Unless you were snarking, in which case mad props.
Bavasi's no longer running the Mariners.
Yeah, but Werth already has an extensive injury history.
I tentatively agree with Kevin, but I don't see how Burnett is a comp.
If we take ability to financially recover out of the equation, is it a wash, then?
And different definitions of what one should be thumbed up or down for.
It wasn't intended for that purpose--it was intended for people to judge whether the comment contributes to the discussion. Probably to weed out the trolls. But it is definitely being used as a like/dislike tool, now.
We have different definitions of "stuff".
This assumes that his defense is really worth all those extra wins. I haven't watched him day in and day out, but you can hardly cite the available defensive metrics, since it is clear that those metrics are questionable.
The best I can say about his defense is that I have to believe Theo et al put in a ton of homework on analyzing his D, so they may have a better idea of exactly how good he is, or will be, than we do.
But if he's not Mr. Megadefender, he's merely Tim Raines playing a corner outfield position--i.e. not worth the money.
Assuming Lee gets 7-8 years at $21-23M per, which is the worse signing--Lee or Werth?
Uh, his "stuff" isn't top shelf. His control is.
Prepare to get downthumbed by jealous people.
This Sox fan wants efficiency.
Also, I bet over half of Red Sox fans didn't even know Henry was buying Liverpool.
Trying to think of a good one is tough. Maybe something on his initials? "All Good" is lame.
Huh? I don't see CK describing anyone as a "turd".
"Does anyone really think Adrian Gonzalez has any reason to value his services below that of Mr. Werth at $18 mil for 7 years?"
No--but I wish GM's wouldn't use that deal as a bench mark. It's an outlier, or should be.
Kevin, do you think (Brett) Jackson will stay in CF? I saw that he bounced around last year, and your analysis of him doesn't mention this. Thanks again.
Not you, matty--whoever votes us down for simply contributing.
Ah, another anti-Sox member voting down Red Sox interests. Joy.
Yeah I don't see it either. Unless the Sox brass really do think Iglesias is ready. Which, defensively, he probably is right now.
Who cares? That's seven years away.
Thanks Kevin--that clears up a little bit of the mystery.
Or what DavidK44 said.
Have you heard anything specific from scouts about Wieters, such as "can't hit the curve", "slower bat than before", etc?
This nicely encapsulates my feelings about both the Gold Gloves and the current defensive metrics.
Didn't know about Lowe.
"4.76 ERA (62.1-54-17-76)"
That's a hell of a stat line for Pineda. Of his nine homers allowed, were six of them grand slams, or something?
Biggest examples are Kobe Bryant and Ben Roethlisberger.
How Do You Solve a Problem Like Derek Jeter? Apparently, you give him (yet another undeserved) Gold Glove.
You've been reading ESPN again, haven't you?
Unless he never could!
Love the extra comment about the Romines. Being run on by his brother has got to cheese Austin off royally. I mean, he's probably been dealing with it since age 5.
Dwayne Murphy is why. He's responsible both for Bautista and for the cratering of a few other players, IMO.
I didn't see this above, so here's my $.02: How about giving people the option to view the players from lowest to highest ranking, instead of just highest to lowest? Frequently when I read the prospect lists, I find myself wishing that I could have been held in suspense as to who the #1 prospect in an org was.
Still love this stuff.
Sounds like it might be years. :( Poor guy.
This article answers a question I've long asked (myself, heh). Thanks Brandon.
At that walk rate, he'll be lucky to slug .500. But maybe he can pull an Alfonso Soriano or something.
I don't have a cite, but don't pitchers who throw mostly fastballs put less stress on their arms than those who throw more breaking balls?
small sample size.
Wrong or not, it doesn't mean the poster is being disingenuous. Moreover, why should we *assume* the poster is being disingenuous?
Please quit ripping on your readers a la Sheehan?
The only Red Sock on the list is a 30-year-old Steve Blass refugee. :(
And from the looks of it, only I would have gotten it anyway. ;)
I guess you haven't played Half-Life 2.
And does this make Frank Wren the G-Man?
Hopefully Mr. Freeman won't be smelling the ashes of the Braves season.
Figgins already demonstrated a bad attitude once publicly this. SSS, of course, but it does make you wonder.
This may be nitpickery, but 31 doubles, 7 triples, and 5 homers in 534 PA, from a middle infielder without great speed, probably isn't "little power". Granted, Ackley's hit most of his XBHs after being promoted to AAA. Also granted, Ackley's D has been lousy at 2B. If he wants to live up to that Figgins comp, he'd better be able to play at least one skill position well.
The biggest effect federal government oversight would have is to convolute the whole thing.
That's funny, I was thinking just the opposite.
Yep. I didn't look beyond BBRef. I didn't know of a good site offhand for the results I was looking for.
I checked each league, starting with the Pioneer League (for some reason). The earliest year that BBRef keeps OPS data for the Pioneer League is 1962, but there are the following gaps:
Nevertheless, according to the available data, no one has had a better OPS at 19 or younger in the Pioneer League than Arcia.
Doing the same for the Appy league (Arcia's league, which has similar gaps in data), we find...Arcia is still #1.
Moving on to the Arizona League...same thing.
Venezuelan Summer League...same.
Gulf Coast League...same.
Dominican Summer League...same.
There are a lot of gaps in the data, and I'm not sure what it means (since most players who destroy rookie ball get promoted quickly), but based on the available data, Arcia has in fact posted the best line (OPS) ever for a 19-or-younger player in rookie ball history.
Hmmmm. I wonder who could have done better (or where to search for such a thing).
Gamel: "First game this year at first base."
Your 2011 Brewers first baseman?
Love this stuff as always, Kevin. One question: Is Arcia's line the best line ever put up (across at least 200 PAs) by a 19-or-younger player in rookie ball?
"93rd in all-time ghastliness"
The link will tell you that 1st in all-time ghastliness is...your 2010 Arizona Diamondbacks. Wow.
My first thought was "Steve Phillips".
Is there a system having a worse year than Boston's?
"Pinch-hitting for Pedro Borbon, Manny Mota..."
Even more, would you rather have David Ortiz than Youk? Must be a lefty hitter thing.
I think what he means is that Hughes would get more press if he weren't surrounded by the biggest names in baseball.
I feel similarly about Youkilis.
How does the manager have a say in roster construction?
I was about to write that Dusty must have an irrational hatred of sabermetrics. But when you write "It was about being active and making things happen," something clicked. Walks are the foundation of OBP, but they're also boring and involve little movement. They're the absence of swinging the bat. It may be that Dusty finds them abhorrent for the reason that they seem like the antithesis of "exciting" baseball.
If so, it's harder than you might think to disagree with that reasoning. Walks are definitely boring compared to hits. However, if his goal to win more games trumps his goal to have lots of swinging, he'd better get a walker in there.
Interestingly (and not for the same reasons), the DH is being used in Philly tonight b/c it's a "home" series for the Jays.
Turning Porcello (temporarily) into a pitch-to-contact guy in the minors was lauded as a good idea in some corners. But now it seems like he doesn't know how to pitch any other way. Has this happened with other pitchers?
"If the Red Sox go home in October, no doubt the Nation will be searching for scalps, but that would only be characteristically hypercritical."
Exactly. Red Sox fans should be required to read this piece before the end of the season so that we have to hear less of the obnoxious and wrongheaded bleating.
What's more amazing, that he arrived at all or that he hit that first-pitch grand slam in his first plate appearance?
I think "pop-up guy" should instead mean a pitcher who manages to be good despite a large fly-ball rate and playing in a neutral park.
Well I guess that answers THAT question...
Interesting that Belisario was put on the restricted list for his visa problems. Does that imply that the visa problems were his fault? Or merely that they weren't the fault of the team?
Why doesn't MLB and MiLB mandate a common strike zone?
Just eyeballing, but in order to get those slugging percentages with those BA's, he'd have to hit at least 50 HR a year, right?
Christina, will you be doing a writeup on Adalberto Ibarra?
Whoever gets Iannetta in trade is going to get a steal. It's obvious that the Rockies think little of him. They buried him in the eight hole when he did play last year (not that that was a huge deal statistically, as, oddly, he had a .921 OPS in the 8 slot). They're hell-bent on keeping mediocre hitters in front of him; they seem unable to get past his low BA's.
Is there more to this story that I'm missing?
God the Royals are stupid.
You're absolutely correct. But the 2008 Rays were projected to an 88-74 record, significantly better than the 83-79 record projected for these A's.
Then you were already on the fence anyway.
Check the W-L records. They show that the A's, Rangers, Mariners, Twins, White Sox, Tigers, and Indians are separated by only four wins. Looking at the rosters for each of these teams, I have no trouble with the idea that each of these teams is close to the others talent-wise.
I don't think he was saying that there is a deliberate attempt by BP to inflate the A's (not sure if that's what you were saying, either). But if the system has been, as you admit, wrong about the A's, there must be some reason for it. One could call that reason a "bias" by PECOTA.
Maybe the problem is the charged word "bias".
Agree wholeheartedly. We've been stuck in "BABIP = luck" for a long time. I was surprised to see that liner rate doesn't have the highest correlation with BABIP. I'm looking forward to a conclusion on this one.
Tulo would be a star if he played just about anywhere else. Coors' reputation as a bandbox works against him.
There was a suggestion at one point of putting all the outfielders together, instead of demarcating by LF-CF-RF.
Kevin, I see your comments on Storen--pretty good fastball, plus slider, decent curve and change--and see a third starter, not a reliever. Is there a reason why he shouldn't try starting?
"Note that the Rockies' Garrett Atkins (.230) and the Marlins' Emilio Bonifacio (.228) both lost their starting jobs last year."
And Yuniesky Betancourt GAINED his starting job back when he was traded to the Royals for actual okay prospects.
I love Dayton Moore.
He's four-star worthy, but would any fantasy player rather have him over Roberts or Pedroia?
Wow--Cano is really overrated here.
There's no winner. Kevin is "arguably" correct.
Oops--you guys surely know that. Didn't realize what you were asking at first.
Scherzer is a Tiger now.
Is Brad Emaus anywhere near the top 15?
In his defense, he might have still been reeling from the last Selig memo (the one that said steroids were gone).
Anyone know what Adam Lind's BABIP and liner rate were for this past season? I've been trying to find it on the stats page, but have had no luck. Also, with either stat be in for hitters in this year's annual?
I ask because the cover of the annual refers to Lind as potentially being Mike Jacobs.
Hey, it goes against BP's policy for comments. Just saying. If you want to turn this place into DeadSpin, by all means, continue.
Is there a catch-all thread regarding user comments? I'm a little tired of watching comments that do in fact contribute to the discussion get buried simply because someone doesn't agree.
I see this as a huge system. It's basically the Yankees' system (loads of high-potential guys) plus a bunch of ready-now impact talent (Feliz, Smoak, Scheppers).
This system explains much more fully why the Red Sox are upping payroll. They're needing to complete for their playoff lives, not just the division.
As a Red Sox fan, god, I hope so.
How jarring is the drop-in multiplayer?
I am tempted to get it, but I'm also sure it'd be pretty darn stressful. "Sorry, you lose ALL your experience points!"
Thank you SO much for posting this. I have hated every version of the game since the original for these very reasons. Rubber-band AI *sucks*!
I actually know MySQL, PHP, and some Linux, but I'm not fresh out of college so I suspect my demographic isn't what you're looking for.
Which version? The original SNES version?
For Pete's sake people, it's a joke.
Reynolds is the exception, not the rule (and he's nearly the only one). Besides, lots and lots of strikeouts in the minors often means an inability to hit a particular pitch or assortment of pitches in various zones. Unless he improves his strikeout rate Peguero is going to be eaten alive by AAA pitching, let alone MLB pitching.
I love these--the rankings are fun. I do have a question about this year's value system. Earlier I saw that Carlos Carrasco is down to a three-star prospect (from five last year), even though his outlook hasn't changed from "third starter". Similarly, I'd have expected a "good...everyday big-league catcher" who is a "finished product" (Moore) to be more than a three-star prospect.
Did you change your valuations to be a big more strict on who earns the higher grades?
Mmmm, good point.
"but if Ellsbury had been positioned somewhere besides Landsdowne Street with Vlad up at bat, he may have been able to reach that blooper."
I agree with your points on Ellsbury, but shouldn't any CF play deep when Vlad is at the plate (even with Vlad's decline)?
Why oh why do these things have to cost money?
I'm not sold on Hudson at all. That rotation looks decent to me if Lowe rebounds. Atlanta has to compete with Philly/after all, though I suppose a WC spot might work.
I don't understand who the Braves are going to use in the rotation who could be both cheaper than Vazquez and able to adequately replace Vazquez's production. Even if they get that big bat, they're just treading water if they don't have a solution to that.
Chamberlain/Hughes/Cano/Gardner/Jeter/Posada/Rivera disagree with you. As much as the Yankees annoy me with buying up all kinds of players, they have brought up useful players too.
If he's limited to first base, there's definitely a trade worth making, especially to the Yankees, who have Teixeira at first.
Also, teams trade away potential for surety all the time.
Wow. Posada NOW is a much better catcher than Montero? There's no way he stays there, then.
Even at BTF some of those people are doing it.
Along with Melky and Dunn for Javier Vazquez and Boone Logan.
The next time somebody lambastes me for suggesting a big trade that you think is a) hopelessly one-sided in favor of the big-market club, and b) would never happen, I propose this trade as Exhibit A in my defense.
Not a great system, thankfully (to this Red Sox fan). I'm more scared about what it will look like in a couple years, when many of these three-star guys might morph into four- or five-star guys.
Is Montero really so bad at catcher that the Yankees wouldn't at least try him back there at the MLB level? I suppose they could DH him, which really wouldn't be a terrible compromise.
It also allows us to truly appreciate the GOOD broadcasters and sports-talk figures.
I have little faith in Omar Minaya doing anything that isn't the wrong thing. It's no secret that NY has been trying to run Wright out of the city, nor is it a secret that the Mets need pitching.
This is the same GM that thinks Frenchy is their starting RF, and that Oliver Perez was worth extending.
The job of a good GM is, partially, to fleece bad GMs.
Oh look. Another burying of trade rumors I posted just because they're Boston/high-profile-team rumors (and not all my idea, either).
Get over yourselves, people. Some of you are expecting Shakespearean prose and The Greatest Idea of All Time.
It's the Marlins.
There are several tasty ideas out there:
1) Buchholz/Ellsbury for A-Gon/Kouzmanoff, with Boston kicking in the difference cash-wise. Boston would them move Cameron to CF until one of their young CF-worthy players (Kalish, Reddick, Westmoreland) is ready. Not sure what that does with LF, though.
and my favorite:
2) Beckett for David Wright.
I think he means Chapman *would* be in the Top 11 on 20-plus teams.
I thought I had seen on ESPN that the Jays had signed John Buck. But I can't find it now.
I forgot about him missing lots of 2010--this makes sense now. Thanks, Christina.
I'm a little surprised that the non-tendering of Reyes received no comment. Has he really sunk so far?
If it wasn't so easy to miss the close box and accidentally open the flashed site instead...
Not to mention that the last thing we need is "Strasburg rules".
BP 2008 scoffs at the notion of batless vet leadership at catcher in Brad Ausmus' section, saying that instead a "coach" should be employed, "someone you pay to sit on the bench, not go out onto the field and murder your offense".
How is this any different? I'd much rather have Jesus Flores catching and Rodriguez/Redmond/Jason Varitek/any decent young-pitcher-handler coaching him.
I'm with BurrRutledge. The Nats had money to burn and wanted a name player.
"Remember when Bill James pined for the guys who draw walks and hit for average, but don't hit for power? If that isn't Figgins to a T, who could be?"
My first thought was Luis Castillo, and I can't help but wonder if Figgins will be seen as as much of an albatross as Castillo in two years. It's a lot of money over a lot of years to pay a guy Figgins' age.
Okay, I should have said "almost always".
One thing we as statheads could stand to learn is: Just because it is *generally* a bad idea to do something (e.g. sell low on young, recently-good players, esp. catchers, to get a reliever) doesn't mean that it is a bad idea in a *particular* case. We tend to think we have all the information we need in order to make judgment, when the reality is that, often, we don't. The Cubs may know something about Soto that we don't. It's not hard to suppose that Soto's awful year was due to conditioning, and the Cubs don't think he'll rebound from that.
The club always has more information.
Was it 150 degrees in April in the Bronx?
Did Holliday really mess up his swing, or this is an attempt by Boras to explain away his poor first half and thus make Holliday more attractive to AL teams?
I was under the impression that Fenway dampens homers slightly, while increasing markedly the number of doubles (and, potentially, triples, given the weird RF and huge CF peak.
I also can't get Holliday's pre-2009 road numbers out of my head. The last annual refers to them as "roughly Shane Victorino". And then he went on to hit much like I'd expect a road-version of Holliday to hit (in his AL tenure).
Basically I'm afraid he's going to be another Penny/Smoltz, where he isn't great except with the NL team. But I would guess EqA and Clay's translations show the real difference (which is to say, not much, offensively).
I haven't seen it either. Heck, I'm a Red Sox fan, and I didn't know that Ortiz's contract is done after 2010. That upgrades my opinion of keeping Bay. I'm still not sold on Holliday given what he did during his turn in the AL.
Is there a good place to see scouting reports on everyone the Sox have drafted this year? I completely forgot Younginer existed.
Point taken, but you did see Lars Anderson up above, didn't you? :)
Miss them? I'll follow them as usual--I just try to keep my expectations low until they show something at the upper levels.
I'm starting not to trust any player that has yet to see AA.
I suspect that this year can be written off as an injury year.
Yep. The deal might have made sense if Yonder Alonso had done what he was expected to do (dominate) in the minors this year.
Except that it's Kenny Williams, which means that Chavez would have averaged .310/.380/.530 over the next five years with five Gold Gloves.
Makes sense, as long as they can get him so cheap that they can eat the cost without much trouble if they have to.
Cleansing the palate appears to be what Mariano Rivera was doing to the baseball last night.
Heck, I participate in the "improve the Pirates" discussions as well. I still don't see how my commentary is or should be any different from what is being seen on "small-market" team boards. They should be thinking creatively as well. I have an interest in a well-run team, whoever is running it. Neal Huntington should be doing what Theo does, trying to find hidden pockets of value; and in his credit, he does seem to be stockpiling talent for the next contending Pirates team.
The Red Sox can acquire cheap, controllable talent because they have the prospects to do so, as well as the cash to make up some of the difference. Being annoyed that they have that ability doesn't mean that they *don't* have that ability. Maybe it isn't fair (and I for one would love to see a league where the highest leverage always comes from GM smarts, and not from who spends the most), but it's still accurate.
It's not as though I chose three players (Dunn, Davis, Morgan) whose GMs would scoff at trading. Neither Davis nor Morgan can hit particularly well, and both were considered fourth-outfielder fodder a year ago. Both are exactly the kind of player that would have more value to the Red Sox than to their own teams, since Ellsbury's defense is bad.
And while Dunn is an excellent batsman, his perceived value is diminished by a) his negative press (thanks JP Ricciardi), b) his awful defense, and c) his low BA and strikeouts. He's exactly the kind of player many teams (well, the AL ones who can put him a DH) undervalue.
My proposal was Ellsbury for Adam Dunn. I fully believe (as does Joe) that the Nats would do that deal in a heartbeat.
In short, my suggestions were hardly pie-in-the-sky.
The supposition (not that I necessarily agree with it) is that getting injured in 2007 eroded his defense. However, it's not as though he was a good fielder before he got to Boston. He posted a UZR/150 of -11.5 in his last year with the Pirates, and only once over his career has he posted a positive UZR.
Absolutely. But from a statistical standpoint, my assertions are correct. One hopes for a Youkilis to happen, but one should not *expect* it. In Theo's (and all of your) defense, Ellsbury isn't a collection of stats, either: he's an actual player. I base my opinions on the statistical probabilities; Theo likely does the same, but he has much more knowledge of the situation than I could ever hope to have. This is why I often defer to the GM's judgment even when my own knowledge says I should disagree.
However, since I lack inside knowledge and am not likely to ever get that knowledge, I have to stand by my original analysis. Heck, I hope you're right. I hope Ellsbury turns into a great CF and an even better hitter. But I don't think we can bank on it.
ANYONE is movable for the right price (in prospects and/or money). To say otherwise is to give the finger to the truth. The Red Sox have both money and prospects. Dunn, Davis, and Morgan all play for teams that should be rebuilding (and thus should find prospects more attractive than a contender). To say that there is a potential match, and to suggest one, is NOT being a homer.
Besides, you're in a Red Sox thread. What did you expect? A top-ten list of the needs of the San Diego Padres?
I'm not being impatient. I'm looking for ways to improve the team.
Even if you don't trust BP's defensive stats, UZR has both Dunn and Ellsbury as pretty bad fielders, as well. So that's a two-run improvement right there (assuming similar stats for next year, which isn't a bad assumption) even if you put Dunn in LF, which Boston wouldn't necessarily have to do if Ortiz continues declining.
I used Morgan as an example of a player that could easily change hands. It's simply a suggestion of a player who is a good defensive CF that probably wouldn't cost the farm to acquire.
Good DEFENSIVE CFs aren't so hard to find that one should volunteer to keep Ellsbury in CF just because good HITTING CFs *are* hard to find.
So I ask: Why would you laugh Theo out of the room? As I noted, my suggestion of Ellsbury for Dunn is contingent on getting a good CF defender. What would be so crippling about that idea?
It's as though people think that Ellsbury is going to suddenly hit .350. He's a good player, but the stats say that the Red Sox needn't become overly enamored with him (to paraphrase from BP 2007's entry on, ironically, Kevin Youkilis).
Fine then. I suggest you check your anti-Boston meter. Every team looks to improve by checking out other teams' players. It's called scouting. Are you saying that the Red Sox aren't allowed to consider trades? Or that they should get the short end of every trade?
Not every comment on how to better the Red Sox or Yankees has to come from a homer. But you seem incapable of realizing that. Try bringing an open mind to the table and you'll be surprised what you'll get, instead of the bitter resentment for the AL East powers that you seem to have.
Not at all. Ellsbury is a crowd-pleaser, and if it weren't for modern baseball statistics, a me-pleaser as well. I enjoy watching him, but I'd enjoy it more if he simply weren't so overrated. Also, I think it's Theo's *job* to say that his players are special--doing so helps maintain or increase their value in trade.
He's looking better and better as an option since his defense is MUCH better than Bay's.
How about this? Don't re-sign Bay, trade Ellsbury to the Nats for Adam Dunn (who in all likelihood will be on a shorter, cheaper deal than Bay gets). Find a defensive star to man CF (like Rajai Davis or Nyjer Morgan). When Ortiz's contract ends, Dunn goes to DH, while the system should be able to produce a marquee CF or LF by that time.
There is no way Bay signs a three-year deal. He'll probably get twice that. This looks like a good year to import a defensive star on short money to man an outfield corner (or CF so Ellsbury can go into LF).
I suspect that Theo will try pretty hard to trade Ellsbury.
Man. I finally understand the experience Yankees fans had with Jeter--neither player gets to a lot of balls, but boy do they sure look good when they do.
I really hope Theo trades Ells.
The option is $6M? Crap--that seems like too much to pay Gonzalez. Just because they've overpaid for mediocrity at short for seemingly the past decade doesn't mean they should continue to do so.
He *did* just give up Encarnacion and two other guys to add aging, injury-prone Rolen to a team that wasn't going anywhere.
Nevertheless, I didn't mean that that deal should be the one that happens. It was merely the first idea that popped up as an example of what the Sox should do with Ellsbury. Ignoring the merit of my post in favor of picking on such an example is what I'd expect out of an ESPN poster, not a BP one.
I believe Ellsbury gets traded in the next two years. He's speedy, hits for average, and makes the highlight reels, which are three of the most overrated skills by traditionalists. Theo surely knows he has a good but highly overvalued commodity on his hands. Trade him with prospects to the Reds for Joey Votto, or some similar deal.
"Even if you take out the Yankees, the AL still has a slight edge, coming in at a bit over $85 million."
That $85M isn't significantly different than the $84M figure for the NL. If you removed the Yankees from the quality ratings entirely, would the AL still have a statistically significant quality advantage?
In other words, is money really the issue here?
Thanks Kevin. I knew he was big. I think I keep hoping for the next A-Rod (and to have that team actually keep him at SS).
Triunfel's now a second baseman?
The Dodgers clearly didn't. Either that or they just don't like their own prospects (which might be more accurate, given their treatment of LaRoche and their supposed peddling of Kemp).
True, but I think the sentiment is correct. If the "closer" went away, I bet the MLBPA tries to enforce higher salaries for relievers in general. Or--gasp--higher salaries than current for "better" relievers.
True. However, few teams are willing to pioneer that unteaching. It'd basically be that team taking on the difficulty of unteaching the closer role, and then, after that, other teams reaping the benefits.
Perhaps a team out of contention should try it first. For them, the trials and tribulations that might come out of this rethinking would be diminished, because the team wasn't going to reach October anyway.
It's also exacerbated by the idea that "The Red Sox tried it, and it failed miserably, so it must be a poor idea".
Before I read the update, I just wanted to say, thanks for the props, Ken.
FRAA is highly erratic. Even BP admits this.
It's a really large step. I hate what UZR says about his defense, but I can't defend my stance statistically, so I pretty much have to go by what UZR says. In my eyes, in order to hit "superstar" status, he needs to improve his defense markedly and improve his OBP by 50 points or so.
He has the upside to do these things, but he's hardly there yet.
"White Sox left fielder Carlos Quentin: "He's a good hitter, but he just looks miserable playing the game. He looks like he is never having any fun at all."
I wonder what he says about J.D. Drew.
Thanks Ken. It's an insightful read, nonetheless.
Your "Most Improved PRIDE Scores in DP Situations, 2005-09" list includes nine National Leaguers and Andy Pettitte. Might I suggest removing all situations in which the pitcher bats? It seems likely that a sizable number of times in which the pitcher comes to bat with less than two outs involve a running on first base. Because the batter before the pitcher is often walked.
Sadly the first article on the page Christina links is about the execrable Enterprise.
Small nit, but that should read Delwyn Young (who's much older than Delmon and the better hitter right now).
The Pirates will also have to supplement their drafting with astute bargain-bin finds and signing the right FAs. I'm thinking the Russel Branyans, Dmitri Youngs, and Carlos Penas of the world. Huntington can't decide that the next Matt Morris deal is a good idea, for instance.
Was just about to post this. Even without accounting for strength of league and strength of schedule, the Yankees are the best team in baseball. After that, you're probably looking at the Red Sox.
I imagine The Torre Effect will get Loney benched for at least one game.
Maybe not, but my fantasy team now hates you, Kenny Williams.
Along the same lines, is this similar to Brian Westbrook's injury?
Can Thome play 1B?
What's interesting is that by trashing their product, they are actually drawing attention to it. Which helps them anyway.
If I could go, I would ask him questions just to judge what kind of man he is. I want an impression of how much he believes in his plan.
The Royals think *you're* biased? I thought they only disliked Rany and JoePo.
While we're snarking, I had a problem with PCS once. I switched to GSM.
For me the question isn't "why is only 10% of MLB black?", but instead "why is it higher in the NFL and especially the NBA?"
If MLB wants to increase their demographic, they should find a way to get people to switch.
If memory serves Smoltz has had several wall-balls hit off him so far.
I suspect the Red Sox are in on Halladay as much because Buchholz doesn't have it together mentally (and Penny being an injury risk) as Smoltz being relatively ineffective. They figure at least one of those three guys is going to become a problem in the second half. Halladay would be the ultimate hedge against that problem.
The A's are only 21st. That's pretty amazing.
A few of us have tried to address this issue but BP does not feel the need to change it.
Also, by continuing to talk about the presser, you are encouraging more talk about the presser.
I'm already just about done with the Hall, as far as creating "Hall of Famers" goes. I don't need some arbitrary institution telling me who's good and who isn't.
Maybe *you* should move on.
On a talent level, Alderson > Sanchez. However, the Giants badly need hitters of any kind immediately if they are likely to contend. You can rightly argue that Sanchez is no great shakes, but he's an upgrade over what they have (as long as they have the nads to sit Renteria).
Plus, Sanchez's D at 2B is better.
You conversation with Geren must have primed him to be extra cheesed off by Adrian Johnson's moving and microscopic strike zone. Either that or he doesn't like BP and wanted someone to vent his anger against. ;)
I (and the Red Sox) would love to know if Daisuke Matsuzaka is one of those physical freaks like Livan. He seems to think he is--but the Red Sox potentially disagree.
"There isn't a single member of the media that can write about this and be unbiased."
Sure, but a) no one is unbiased, and b) even people who think Rubin overstepped himself think Minaya went too far.
It was a deliberate and petty attempt at character assassination. Maybe it was even the right thing for Minaya to do, in his eyes. But it is difficult to argue with how bad it makes Omar look, media bias or not.
I must have glossed over it in my "Johnson" search there. Yes, work is boring.
Oddly, Johnson does not appear on BBRef.
The funny thing about Kittle is that he hit for average and showed selectivity in the minors (in addition to his ridiculous power numbers). But when he got to The Show, the average disappeared (hitters' parks?). Johnson might have the power, but he also strikes out more than Kittle did and (connectedly) isn't hitting for average.
Kittle is a good comp, though. If I'm a ChiSox fan, I cringe when I hear his name.
Proof that the day has been long--missed the snark.
In all seriousness, I don't see how the Mets can possibly be ranked 3rd here. The only way they have a chance in the Central is if they get some of their stars back, which, as noted, isn't happening anytime soon. In my eyes, they should have appeared in yesterday's article.
Oakland is projected to score more runs than the Cubs. Oakland is also predicted to give up more runs than the Cubs.
This flies in the face of virtually everything said about the two teams this season.
With half the starting position players injured?
Carmona was expected to rebound--he didn't. Reyes was supposed to be decent--he wasn't. Going into the season the Indians didn't think they had to rely on Sowers or Laffey that much. But I don't know why they thought to rely on Pavano.
I saw the same thing--my guess is that he transposed the numbers.
Well, fans don't really care about Selig at this point. As far as they're concerned, the game thrives in spite of him.
Joe, no offense, but no non-SF GM would pull any of those Villalona-related trades.
It also means that he could slide in pretty quickly. If his defense is an 80 already, the Red Sox may let him learn to hit at the MLB level.
That would make so much sense that it's virtually guaranteed not to happen.
While it is true that such players are rare, I wouldn't say it "cannot" happen. 30-30 seasons are uncommon but not tremendously rare. 40-40 seasons have happened. Eric Davis had a 30-50 season. How many steals would it take for you to consider someone to have top percentile SB production?
I'd say that virtually any team will have issues with Rays basestealers. They have two of the best in the game.
"Upton was expected to be a .300 hitter."
To me, that was always an unreasonable expectation. Upton always had high strikeout rates, which tend to depress BA. Unless he explodes (which he might well do, being only 24 and having all those raw skills), he'll probably settle in as a .280 hitter with lots of walks, power and speed.
I was about to post this. The route was awful, but even after the route, he still would have had a shot at it if he hadn't turned around and waited for the ball to come down. A truly lousy play.
Agree. This is more about giving disgruntled Mets fans another excuse to complain than anything else, regardless of what they might say about Berroa. At this point, the fans are mostly (and understandably) incapable of judging a move like this at face value.
The league could easily implement an automatic system for calling balls and strikes (not to mention boundary calls). But they don't want one. They have to a) mollify the umpires' union, and, more importantly, b) umpire arguments are a classic part of the game that most people like to see. Sort of like fighting in hockey (less extreme, of course). People enjoy the arguments.
There is also the thrill of seeing the call made by the ump on a close play or pitch. If we took that away, I think people would be less happy with the game in general.
Given how umpires are treated in their profession, it wouldn't be surprising that several of them might want to "get back" at certain players, perhaps even with union approval. If I were a major-league ump, I would probably be perpetually pissed that I get screamed at every day by people who get paid a whole hell of a lot more money than me to play a game. Indeed, the job of the major league ump appears to be "get screamed at, and let it happen".
What sane person wouldn't want to get back at that?
For most games, Fenway Park now has a camera in CF that shows the pitcher being directly "under" home plate. It makes outside/inside calls much easier.
I was thinking Izzy Alcantara myself.
Is there any indication how much of this is Glass and how much is Moore?
It should be reiterated that this article is going by first-half of 2009 stats only. Obviously, certain other players have had better careers than some of the guys listed here.
True. However, I would like to see Pitch/FX data for Damon (and every Yankees hitter) this year. Specifically, I want to know know how many of Damon's HR just dropped over the fence. Seems to me like there's been a lot of those this year. If they're just dropping over the fence, they'd have been warning-track outs last year.
Ultimately, there *does* seem to be a plan in Pittsburgh. Whatever it is, the effects of it have been defensible. Over two years they've picked up a whole pile of high-upside players. For a team that hasn't been over .500 in 17 years, it's hard to call that bad, whatever you might think of the individual players acquired or the players traded away.
Wow, an utterly classic piece of misogyny.
Way to cherry-pick stats to weakly support baseless conclusions. You're going to have to do better than that for an argument.
Anyone have this year's HR spread data on Youk? My memory says most of his homers at Fenway have been bombs.
Thanks Will. Having had a bad ear infection before, I can say that it caused both dizziness and anxiety. My own guess would be that he'll be fine once he recovers from the ear.
"Whether that's due to fatigue, injury, or aging, only time and a larger sample size will tell."
I agree with those, Jay, but I would add "possibly wilting under the negativity" and "lack of PEDs" to that list.
Not a snark. Players are a) human, and b) obviously derive some benefit to the PEDs they have taken.
I shout at the TV. It helps.
Were the reports that Votto had an ear infection incorrect?
I'm surprised to see no comment on Kevin Youkilis here. To me there's an interesting debate to be had about his BABIP. One look at it tells you that there's no way anyone could sustain it; yet, fans who have watched every game he's played this year can tell you that every hit has been an absolute rocket. I wouldn't be surprised if someone told me his liner % was the highest in the league by a long shot.
"Of course, Dusty Baker says it's just one of those things, telling John Fay that "he may have overhit, but how do you know until you overhit?""
This explains why he keeps hiring Corey Patterson--he has no concept of cause and effect.
Like most things government, this reeks of a political decision masquerading as common government incompetence.
Vicente Padilla just got waived. My guess is that he's either a Jay or Met in two days.
Are the Yankees already planning to move Montero off catcher? If so, is he playable in an outfield corner?
I ask because he is major trade bait if he can't play catcher or OF, because the incumbents at 1B and 3B aren't going anywhere.
Have to admit, I had the same reaction.
I found this link: http://mlb.fanhouse.com/2009/05/29/khalil-greene-describes-his-anxiety/
Along the same lines, wasn't Atkins already bench in favor of Stewart?
The Twins do some strange things, don't they? If I were them, I'd demote both Gomez and Young, get them the ABs they need on the farm.
BP 2009 pointed out that Ian Stewart's line last year was a BABIP fluke. Is he really worth picking up, in this case?
Thanks for this. I ran out of time before I could research this.
I don't think we're saying that the Phillies should give up Howard's OPS against righties. I'm merely saying that they should round out their bench with a lefty-masher.
By my reading, he's not really comparing the two players. He's saying that either one could be the 3rd-best outfielder in the NL (and thus it is difficult to pick between them).
Which I agree with, based on only offensive stats.
It is very obvious that Howard can't hit lefties. So I think your assertion that "all" of us "laugh" at Howard's platoon-player skills is slightly too broad.
If Howard didn't take walks, he'd be a lefty Marcus Thames.
The only difference is that Werth ain't durable, which means he almost never puts up the requisite counting stats. So I wouldn't put Werth in Markakis' territory--as is often pointed out here, health is a skill, and a vital one at that.
Good point. My main sense here is that we should have a more formal guideline as to what sort of process we should be using to consider players for the ASG. We can and should feel free to deviate from such a guideline, but it would be nice if the guideline did exist.
The ASG voting has been dissatisfying for a long time now. I think MLB should make the process a bit more interesting or coherent, instead of encouraging us all to be fanboys.
If you knew nothing about a player, except this line:
.380 OBP, 40 HR;
would you want him in your ASG?
It's worth pointing out that the pitcher's park benefit of Safeco is generally to CF and LF only, as pointed out in this year's book. The expectation is that Ibanez would only be slightly helped by PNC.
Personally, I think Ibanez will come crashing down to earth soon. Which doesn't mean that I don't think he should be in the ASG.
I don't know. Without digging for it (I'm doing that right now), I'd guess that one could find a player who could a) play first base, and b) put up a .770 OPS against lefties, rather easily. It strikes me as something that specific replacement-level players could do. I bet you could find a lot of right-handed, AAAA hitters who could put up that OPS against lefties (and also be lousy against righties).
But I have to see if that can be researched.
Which is where I fundamentally differ on ASG voting. I would select the player having the best half-season.
I suppose that that puts a disproportionate emphasis on the first half-season, but don't we play this game every year? And isn't it likely that the best players in the game are also likely to have had an All-Star-worthy first half? Maybe they should stick the ASG at the end of the season or something.
But if you're going to put the best players in the game in there, when do you decide who the "best" is? Is one great rookie year (e.g. Ryan Braun) enough? Or do they have to have good resumes (in which case, do we let rookies play in the ASG?)?
It just brings up a host of other questions.
Right, but we don't usually hear about such things in the media.
I should have also mentioned that the Pads should be acquiring YOUNG talent in return.
The problem with the other Sox being in the Gonzalez sweepstakes is one of disturbing the ship. Acquiring Gonzalez requires trading either Ortiz, Youkilis, or Lowell. Moving any of those players would significantly rock the ship. Lowell would probably be the easiest guy to move, on that level, but he also has a bad hip and can hardly run.
Who needs a 3B-man badly?
I agree. It's one thing to jettison salary. It's another to have a great player under team control for $13.25M combined for the next three years. Gonzalez is :
a) still relatively young as star players go; and
b) fire-sale cheap for a player of his caliber.
The Padres are now able to spend money again, so it's not as though getting rid of any and all salary is still paramount. If I'm them, I don't trade Gonzalez unless I get comparable major-league talent in return WITHOUT adding salary, or get a collection of top-tier prospects.
Blanks or no Blanks, I'd have to be blown away to trade Gonzalez before next year at the earliest.
Right, but the talent in the system plus that at the MLB level screams "rebuild and get rid of salary". It's not as though the Padres will be competitive anytime soon.
It's interesting that we're actually hearing about a big trade potentially being held up because somebody doesn't like Guillen. It would be a first, as far as we know.
Not to mention the fact that the "double" wouldn't have been one if a competent defensive play had been made.
What I think he's talking about is psychology. But even if you pretend that Santana's pitching is negatively affecting the Mets' hitting psychologically, Phillips provides no evidence--he just makes the statement and leaves it. Classic evidenceless arguing style.
I agree generally, but it kind of hinges on one's definition of "informed". Does that imply that they have to be informed with a baseline of "correct" information? If so, who decides what information is part of that baseline?
I mean, one could argue that Steve Phillips is "informed"--just not in ways that you or I might agree with.
Yes, you could, but it is still a worthwhile practice, provided that it isn't abused.
I sense that you are thinking that Phillips might fit "abject moron" status.
I find it ironic that ESPN is going advanced-stat-happy while still having Phillips on the broadcasts. In a way that is a good thing. Presenting alternative viewpoints is a good way to provide contrast and get people thinking.
They pulled the plug on Morrow as closer? I know they were alternating him with Aardsma, but no one else on the roster has any saves. Are they looking for a third option, or trying (gulp) to use Aardsma there full-time?
God, I hope not. Vertigo is terrible.
I have the sense that Phillips is still bitter from being tossed on his ear by the Mets.
The concept of "BAWSIW" should be expanded to include other broadcasters/pundits. I propose BAWTHIW (Batting Average While Talking Head Is Watching).
The "Greek God of Walks" moniker *was* accurate at one time--just in the minors. It appears to refer to his 276 PA in 2001 (73 BB) and his 417 PA at Portland in 2003 (86 BB).
Still, he was no Jack Cust.
Performance-wise, does it seem that Clement is still a catcher? The Mariners seem hell-bent on not starting him there.
This list is great. I can check it to see where my favorite prospects are, instead of guessing level all the time.
I don't think that was English.
I don't care if Dayton thought he could turn Farnsworth into Cy Young. You don't spend $4.6 million per year on a reliever project.
Your argument *might* be valid--but it is also a hijack.
McLouth's big year wasn't based on one great month. He had four months with an OPS of .885 or higher. If you had said that his big year was based on one great half-season, I'd agree; .781 OPS post-allstar-break really isn't huge. Good for a CF though.
Will, I too have suffered from panic attacks and agoraphobia. I fully sympathize with what you went through (and what Willis is apparently going through). Like you, I am curious as to why they sent him for blood tests. Last I checked, anxiety disorders didn't show up in blood tests. It makes me wonder if the Tigers ordered the tests because they didn't really know what the problem was, because Willis perhaps wasn't forthcoming with the source of his problems.
Not that Willis should really be blamed for his reticence, if that is indeed the case. Despite the inroads we have made in this area, the continued stigmatization of mental disorders is a completely obnoxious relic. Mental illness should be treated as just another illness, with all of the attendant care and sympathy that should come with that.
I'm not sure I would do that deal, as a Red Sox fan. But only because I want to see Anderson and Reddick blossom in Boston. Well, that and I keep wondering if Peavy is going to fall apart.
That was exactly my thought, too. When does Gonzalez stop being under team control?
"You're beginning to see new statistical terms that you never expected would enter into the mainstream lexicon."
So true, and this must be at least partially due to BP's increased presence by partnering with ESPN. My days of exploiting other owners during the draft may be over. :(
Way to stick your foot in your mouth (again), Bud. Did he even watch the games? Did he see the mad celebration after the big comeback win against Venezuela? To me, it has been obvious all along that this USA team had the right attitude and the right intensity.
Rollins is right. If Selig wants a more-intense Classic, don't force the teams to sit around waiting. Waiting kills intensity.
But really, Selig should just keep his mouth shut and congratulate the USA team on a deep run. And pay attention to it next time.
More pieces like this would be awesome, and would go a long way toward dispelling the stereotype that all black players have to be dumb.
Thanks Will. Is there a link to the data?
"Remember, an older player who can hit but not run often begins hitting more homers."
I haven't heard this before. It makes some logical sense, but is there analysis to prove it?
Nate, Kevin et al: You guys are great. Most other places wouldn't give such a detailed and accurate explanation as to the troubles of bringing out their flagship product.
As an erstwhile programmer myself, I also appreciate just how tough "fixing" messy code is. The code for PECOTA must be staggering. Heck, I'd probably enjoy helping to fix it (if you're interested).
My first thought was, that has to be a misprint. What's Tampa thinking here?
I don't consider it a cheap shot--but I'd love to know why he'd be considered any kind of head case.
Shaun Marcum being officially done for the year leaves him off the list?
What an obnoxiously-good system. I'm still smarting from giving up a guy like Beltre in exchange for Eric Freaking Gagne.
Are you the same Timo Seppa from Puck Prospectus? If so, I\'m liking your columns and I\'m happy to finally see some good hockey analysis!
Thanks for the book feedback guys. Now I have to convince my unemployed butt that it can spend a frivolous $13.
Heh. I guess I was looking for something a little more specific than a general sales pitch. Thanks though!
There\'s a lot of good stuff in here. Thanks, Alex, for compiling it.
A few notes:
1) Bowden probably did enough wrong to be fired even without the allegations of wrongdoing. But I agree completely that it is a sad world where you can be convicted in the court of public opinion without even knowing who accused you.
2) I have new respect for Adrian Beltre.
3) I would marry Billy Beane.
4) Josh Hamilton is the closest thing to a clean star that we have. Phenomenal success story--they don\'t get much better than that.
5) It takes two months to get whatever substance you sent to MLB back? No wonder sometimes people get caught when they didn\'t know they were doing anything wrong.
I am on the fence about buying the book this year. Does anyone want to sell me on the book? I\'m kind of looking for a reason to buy it.
FYI, Wang is missing from the Yankees\' depth chart.
Yeah--but a 42% chance to improve on the completely-ridiculous numbers he already puts up is still amazing in my book.
It ended there because I was risking going for the \"number of posts before somebody thinks I am spamming them\" record.
42% improve rate for Pujols. My god.
Wow. How many players have ever had a 90% PECOTA forecast close to 100? Wieters does. He has to be the only rookie ever to be anywhere close to that.
I guess PECOTA sees David Price as already having broken out with little chance of getting better. I can believe that since he already did great last year.
I\'m tempted to ask: Was the initial PECOTA-card rollout as broken as we were saying it was, or did we blow a few errors out of proportion?
I really appreciate this, Dave. I hope none of my comments came off as too harsh. Best of luck to you in getting the situation straightened out.
I am not hating on BP either. The BP staff are great, and I\'d be lost without the advanced stats BP crunches for me. I consider $35 to be a great price for that data plus the articles.
As a paying subscriber, though, I reserve the right to inform BP when their usually-great service is suffering a big performance drop, like it is now.
Agree completely. I don\'t mind the comments being missing. We\'re not just paying for PECOTA, here--we\'re paying for lots of other content (e.g. articles). And I love most of those articles.
If you\'re only around for the PECOTA, well, that\'s a different story.
But regardless of whether you\'re only here for PECOTA or not, the cards *have* to be mostly correct when published. Otherwise you\'re undermining your product and people will stop thinking it is reliable (myself included).
Yes. I have no problem with BP letting the community error-check their product--as long as they tell us that that *is* what they\'re doing. I don\'t like being told \"the cards are out\", and then finding so many errors that the entire reliability of the data is called into question.
Thanks again for these.
I just checked David Price, and his breakout rate is 1%. His improve rate is 6%. Those can\'t be right, can they?
There\'s always streaming video of baseball games that you can get online, of any team, from anywhere.
There is probably a market inefficiency to be exploited here. If it is true that nobody cares about customer loyalty, being the one team that DID care about customer loyalty might produce an advantage, if leveraged correctly.
Does any other stadium charge that much money for that quality of a seat?
They\'re pricing out the fans in the same way that they priced out other teams on free agents.
This is going to be negatively rated, but I couldn\'t resist.
Charging $85 for those seats is highway robbery, and will likely *still* be highway robbery ten years from now. The same seats in the smaller, perpetually-sold-out Fenway Park are about half that.
My only beef with this notion is that the price of alienating lots of longtime fans, while probably unquantifiable, is doubtless high.
No wonder they aren\'t advertising the policy change. They don\'t want mass \"average fan\" protests. They don\'t want all that bad karma to wreck their brand.
The good news is that except for two names, the PP staff appear to be completely different from the BP staff. I have faith that Will and David will be able to manage their respective loads.
Hah. Let\'s go Bruins.
I completely agree. Over time, we as a community get closer and closer to analytic truth in baseball. We have made great headway already. Why can\'t it be the same with sports that have a higher reliance on the \"team\" concept? Just because we aren\'t anywhere near baseball yet, in terms of isolating the performance of the individual, doesn\'t mean that we *can\'t* get there.
At the very least, it surely doesn\'t mean that we can\'t do better than many traditional forms of analysis.
When I saw this, I got up and did a dance. And my buddy looked at me oddly.
I actually think Lowrie\'s PECOTA is slightly low. My guess is he\'ll have about a .750 OPS. He played with a wrist injury much of last year.
\"I have no idea where PECOTA is wishcasting that power from for Lowrie, as he hit .258/.339/.400 (that\'s a .142 ISO) in 2008, and he was over his head at that.\"
If PECOTA is taking his minor-league record into account, it\'s probably seeing the 47 doubles and 13 homers Lowrie hit between AA and AAA in 2007, plus the not-quite-as-good-but-still-decent power showing in AAA in 2008.
I love how you remark that losing Francis pretty much decimates the Rockies\' staff. Whatever else we think of Buster Olney, he had a front-page article detailing why the Rockies are \"still\" in good shape without Francis. How they can be in good shape without Francis if they weren\'t in good shape *with* him, I don\'t know.
I love articles like this. It cobbles together my suspicions about PECOTA comps, which I was too lazy to research, and presents them in amusing fashion. Well done, sir.
I hope this means Lugo will only play to spell Lowrie (and no one else). Big contract be damned.
Technically that article was meant to rank the \"most important\" players. So I ranked them by \"how screwed would the Sox be if they lost this player?\"
I agree. With Baldelli behind Ellsbury, I think the only way Van Every gets *any* PAs this year is if one of those two gets hurt. The Red Sox wouldn\'t put Van Every in LF. Maybe RF, but there\'s a lot of depth at the corners before you get to him.
Aha. If you go from the DT card, Longoria is there. If you simply do a search and choose the PECOTA card, the link is incorrect.
Odd. I get \"The requested URL /pecota/LONGORIA19851007A.php was not found on this server.\"
Never mind on Price.
I found a couple more missing: David Price and Jed Lowrie.
Just a guess, without more searching, but could it be that everyone who was a rookie last year is missing?
Evan Longoria is missing, currently.
Yeah, because I\'m obviously not contributing to the discussion. Right. Sure.
He\'s projected for a .376 OBP, and there\'s little reason to suggest he won\'t get it, so it means he\'ll often be on base when Kouzmanoff comes up.
Not to pile on, but Wigginton was signed by the Orioles and will be a utility player there. Could always take him out and put Cabrera in. ;)
Why not put Cabrera in, then?
I really don\'t think he\'s going to outproduce A-Rod. The PECOTA for Rodriguez is really low.
He will also have Brian Giles in front of him.
I agree. It depends on how much stock you put in PECOTA.
If A-Rod matches his PECOTA forecast, Miguel Cabrera is *definitely* higher than him.
Nitpicking, but you have two too many Jose\'s in there--catcher is Jesus, shortstop is Cristian.
Flores should actually be decent this year. The lineup looks pretty good--it\'s the staff that\'s going to be a problem. I just don\'t see how Stan Kasten can blame Acta if his pitching staff gives up 6 runs a game. It\'s not as though Acta has anything to work with there.
Casilla\'s PECOTA looks pretty bad--that\'s probably why he\'s not there.
Hill should definitely have appeared in the \"Just Missed\" category.
Marc isn\'t saying Miles is better than anyone on the list. He\'s probably worse than most. As for Barmes, he *is* a better option than Eckstein, if for no other reason than he plays in a tremendous hitters\' park.
Really? Johnson has always been a higher OBP/lower average type of guy. If his average dipped, chances are the walks would not.
Roberts, I think, gets ranked behind due to the PECOTA forecast, which I think is pretty low, especially in the BA dept. I\'d have little beef with ranking them the way you do, though I think Pedroia gets the benefit of the doubt thanks to his tremendous year last year.
Hill\'s PECOTA prediction, by itself, would keep him out of the top 20 (just barely). The injury concern probably keeps him out, as well.
I mentioned the same thing to Marc, and his reply was that he didn\'t want to have lots of repetition in the lists.
But I would like to see them included, as well.
Would Utley be knocked out of the top spot if you thought that he was going to be out until June?
He\'s projected to be at 3B this year. From what Marc said about the 1B rankings, he\'s going to be putting players in the position they are likely to be playing in 2009 (not all positions where a player is eligible).
Yes. Fearing something has a tendency of helping bring what you fear to pass.
Not that I am the authority on such things. I just think that if you\'re going to rate a comment negatively, say why.
I was referring to yours. Will\'s contributes, as well.
Guys: How does this post not contribute to the discussion? It is a worthy point. At the very least, it is an attempt to contribute to the discussion.
I wonder if the biggest effect of these drugs is placebo. A-Rod said that he took them because of the pressure of his big contract. It might be that many of these players are taking them just so they can relax about their abilities--which causes them to perform better, because they are less likely to press.
I don\'t know for sure, but I do know that \"America Runs on Dunkin\" isn\'t successful just because coffee has caffeine in it. It\'s also because of social and emotional reactions. People can go anywhere for coffee--but they choose Dunks because that is where everyone goes and they derive more comfort from doing it than they would going elsewhere.
As for Shaughnessy, virtually everything he says is designed to get a rise out of people, often while obfuscating the truth. His columns aren\'t worth the bandwidth they take up to load them.
Before his season last year, the hype machine had Ellsbury as a 100% chance of winning the RoY. To me, that\'s putting someone up as a \"star\".
I would also love it if the top 20 included players who are likely to be eligible at that position, regardless of whether they will play there much in 2009. I\'m talking about guys like Ortiz, Butler. Heck, PECOTA projects Giambi to spend most of his time at DH--why not add the others who are eligible and belong in the top 20?
I love the new format. It makes eyeballing players to draft so much easier.
You guys must get this question every time hockey is mentioned on BP, but...any news on a potential Hockey Prospectus?
I had the same thought. Another one is 151 games for Wieters--all at catcher. Even accounting for the fact that PECOTA will give players full-seasons at a position, if they\'ve not missed time in the past, that is ridiculous. A limitation of the projection system?
Matt Holliday\'s on Colorado. Hmmm....
Really? I thought it meant major-league projection.
Maybe I\'m just not used to the increased replacement-player level. The VORP values for these guys are much lower than expected. But Pedroia\'s projection is slightly inferior to what he did in *2007*, let alone 2008. Youk\'s is slightly better than what he did in 2007, but nowhere near 2008. Ortiz is projected to basically repeat last year\'s production (which was an injury-plagued year).
I realize some of these projections are seemingly in line with previous PECOTA projections--but shouldn\'t PECOTA be computing based on actual seasons, not previous PECOTA projections.
Is BP going to re-run past years\' PECOTAs with the new replacement-level value? I\'d like to see the difference.
FYI, you have Crisp on Boston.
Improvement over last season for Guzman? Why on earth does PECOTA not see his last 1 1/2 years as a fluke? He\'s at the END of his prime, for pete\'s sake.
PECOTA sees Pedroia\'s career, looks at last year, and goes \"fluke\". PECOTA then sees Guzman\'s career (or last 3 years of it), and goes \"not fluke\".
I just don\'t get it.
Who was the last player that PECOTA predicted a Hall-of-Fame-caliber rookie year from?
PECOTA *hates* the Red Sox\' hitters. All of them. It thinks:
A) Pedroia\'s breakout was a fluke
B) Youkilis\' breakout was a fluke
C) J.D. Drew\'s rebound was a fluke
D) Ortiz\' decline is for real
E) Jason Bay\'s decline is starting
F) Jed Lowrie\'s injury-induced 2008 indicates his performance going forward
G) Lowell won\'t rebound
The chances of all or most of these things happening are pretty slim.
There\'s no way he gets 649 PAs. Also, for some reason I thought that line, with those PAs, would give him a higher VORP than 59.6. Is he playing in all hitters\' parks?
Christmas in January.
Maybe a third category is in order: \"exceptionally wrong JAWS\", maybe?
No offense, Joe, but you just managed to insult some readers as well as (probably) Mr. Jaffe.
Mark\'s brother\'s book probably has some truth in it, some damning truth. But what kind of brother sells out his other brother?
I see this as a fairly good comp (note to whoever rated the comment negatively--why?). Both are predicted for big power, hit for average, with lots of walks. Both are limited defensively (though Anderson is supposed to be at least okay as a 1B man). Both are young for their leagues.
Butler has thus far disappointed in the bigs. We don\'t have that data on Lars yet. I hope Lars is great out of the gate, but who knows?
I\'d need a scouting point of view to discern between their projections.
I see Lowrie as a .360 OBP guy with 15 HRs. Pretty good out of your shortstop.
I think it means the latter--that teams passed on Westmoreland because they didn\'t think he\'d sign. But the Red Sox *did* think he\'d sign, so they drafted him.
I agree. I don\'t really think he\'s a good defensive shortstop, though. However, if his wrist is healed, he should provide more than enough offense there to stick and be just fine.
People on ESPN\'s message boards shred him. But then, that\'s why I\'m here and not there.
So kind of the position-player equivalent of \"solid third starter\".
\"Ellsbury is more than a bit overrated—in another organization with a lower profile, he\'d be a nice defensive outfielder with limited secondary skills that people wouldn\'t be so excited about.\"
I don\'t disagree with this idea. But, if he\'s really not all that, why is he still ranked 5th overall? Because he\'s made The Show?
Which makes it all the more amusing that he wants to put his walking-est player at DH.
I still see that projection, if he gets healthy.
BP: Please get rid of the rating system.
I don\'t understand this at all. If you\'re going to let the opinions of largely-anonymous masses influence whether you buy the book, then it is likely that your convictions on buying the book weren\'t very strong to begin with.
I fail to understand how the editor is responsible for the comments of posters.
Because you got censored? The censors are likely other readers and not BP staff.
Lost in all of this is that BP has once again finished the BP Annual! I drool over its publish date.
Not going to freak out over Olbermann. What really gets me is the way people rate comments here. The style is dangerously close to people trying to censor ideas they don\'t like.
Negatively-rate comments like, say, \"You\'re an idiot\", or something. Or take away the \"viewing threshold\". But do something to help keep the comment sections from turning into a bunch of elitists policing people\'s opinions.
Thanks Kevin for the responses and the work you put in.
Who on Oakland do you project for stardom? Or should I wait along with everyone else?
It\'s actually two, FYI.
I agree with this, BTW. I do think Villalona\'s a rare talent. I just don\'t know if I would make him a five-star prospect based solely on upside. Most other 18-year-olds with amazing tools get four-star ratings with a comment of \"Lots of tools, but has yet to do much with them.\"
Kevin, I may not necessarily agree with your assessment of Villalona, but Future Shock is my favorite feature of BP. I hope nobody thinks I\'m being too harsh.
True. It\'s just a preference. It also depends on what one considers a prospect--does one place all their emphasis on upside? Does one consider stats. If so, how much? Does health play a role in one\'s prospect-dom?
Frankly I don\'t think considering a relatively inflexible set of rules for evaluating prospects is a bad idea. We have statistical bases for evaluating major league players--why not come up with a statistical basis for evaluating prospects?
Which isn\'t to say that my current philosophy on prospects is the right one--especially since I haven\'t based it in stats *or* scouting reports.
I tend to go by Sickels\' evaluation style, which is that they can\'t be five-star prospects unless they\'ve at least started to prove they can do something with the tools they have.
How can Villalona be ranked so high, when he has done virtually nothing stats-wise to merit that? Is his upside Babe Ruth?
I suppose Blyleven\'s 50 HRs allowed as a Twin in 1986, plus his zero home runs it, wouldn\'t make the list because he didn\'t set that career-high (of zero HRs) that year.
Otherwise, he\'s at the top of the list. On a technicality, maybe, since he never hit any HRs in his career, but still.
Doesn\'t that mean it *does* work?
Young is far above league-average. The real problem is that he is declining and likely to continue doing so.
Does Young\'s FRAA indicate his true performance as a SS?
I think I\'m a normally reasonable person, but at this point I\'m thinking they should raze the Hall\'s standards to the ground and then rebuild them using competent standards.
So was he using Extreme, or the \"regular\" stuff?
I\'m not a conspiracy nut, but would there be any way to modify the label in such a way as to render that modification undetectable? Say, if Romero wanted to claim ignorance on a product...
That\'s what I thought the Reds were doing. Bringing in a 4th outfielder. Maybe Jocketty says this to light a fire under Dickerson.
Or maybe Walt\'s about to see his stock go way, way down.
I\'m not all doom and gloom when it comes to all these signings. I\'m more inclined to bemoan what the Yankee brand has become. It used to mean something similar to excellence, hard work, and heart. Now it stands for avarice.
In all fairness, Wieters is HUGE for a catcher.
Given Wieters production and scouting predictions, I can see him being better than Mauer by the end of 2010.
He said \"NL\" history.
As far as I can tell, Young is still projection. I don\'t know whether it\'s the Twins or Rays\' attempts to govern his swing that have stunted his growth. But he obviously needs to change what he\'s currently doing, because it\'s not really working out for him.
Indeed. If Ron had his way, the team would be full of no-hit, great-field guys. Welcome back, Nick Punto!
If the Red Sox miss out on Teixeira, I\'d like to see them pick up Wigginton as Lowell insurance...
As for the Marlins, well, Loria might be reprehensible, but the team still manages to put a competitive product on the field. Maybe the Marlins have found the newest inefficiency--namely, if they are the best finder of talent in MLB, they don\'t have to pay *anybody*.
It\'s worked out so far, in a way.
Cameron/Hall for Cabrera/Igawa? Is it just me, or is that ridiculously one-sided?
I have two issues with Joe\'s otherwise-correct analysis:
1) How often does an arbitrator award a player a one-year deal that is significantly more expensive than a multi-year deal that that player would get on the free-agent market? I can see an argument for not offering arbitration, if Player A might be awarded, say, a $10 million, one-year deal, but is likely to get, say, a $12 million, two-year deal on the FA market.
2) The analysis is overly simplistic in that it ignores any inside information and/or interactions between the players and the GMs, as well as indirect concerns involving the club. For instance, having Burrell (or some other player) around on a one-year deal might be a distraction of some kind for the Phillies. I don\'t really see it, but perhaps the Phillies do, since they\'ve seemingly been shopping him for eons.
I thought it was a silly idea originally, but the ROI on this is potentially huge, even if neither one of them sniffs the major leagues.
As silly as it sounds to sign a couple guys who never played baseball before, these are exactly the kinds of gambles Pittsburgh should be making--low financial commitment with potential for upside.
That alone makes it a worthy exercise.
Glass half-full on David Murphy? He has yet to do anything over a full season in the big leagues, or much of anything special in the minors, yet he goes into 2009 as not a question mark?
Adding Giambi & Furcal wouldn\'t be enough to \"win now\". They\'d have to add about four quality starters.
That\'s just what I\'m thinking. It\'s a great trade for the A\'s if you\'re just talking about the value of the players swapped. But otherwise, it doesn\'t do much for the A\'s chances of winning.
It might put more people in the seats, which is a decent tangible benefit.
Or this could be part of a mad plan to sign Holliday long-term as a cornerstone and then use their farm system to build around him, like they did with Eric Chavez.
But how does this deal help the A\'s win for next year?
\"it almost makes sense to avoid taking a stab at getting it right on draft day, and instead taking the time to improve your pitching as the season develops, when you have a better idea of who is doing what out of the bullpen.\"
This is exactly what I do in the draft. Grab sure-things at pitcher, but not too many, and then be quick on the waiver wire on the guys who nobody had ever heard of until they got called up and started mowing people down. It happens every year.
It\'s not that volatile--if your league counts holds.
If their bullpen is a disaster, they\'ll still be better than this year\'s Mets team, which nearly made the playoffs.
So they\'ll be back.
I don\'t know. Butler is apparently still a lousy 1B-man. If they went with him at DH, it would be fine for them.
Yanks shouldn\'t trade for Butler anyway. Don\'t they already have a huge logjam of guys who can\'t play a position (even without Giambi)?
Red Sox: Consider offers for Ortiz. Keep Lowrie at SS. Fleece Texas out of one of their four catchers. Keep the prospect mill churning.
I sincerely hope Moore is not dumb enough to make that deal.
I was going to write my own--but this one sums it up nicely.
This is a slight snark, but I\'d replace \"3B\" with \"anyone\".
Casey\'s not back?
Seriously. It\'s one thing to think Pedroia had a better year. It\'s another to think he was worse for MVP than, alternately, Morneau, Bradley, Halladay.....
Yeah - I just didn\'t know if those results have been played out statistically. I suppose you could look at the careers of players who started as catchers and then moved, e.g. Biggio.
What does it take to be a part of the IBAs? I ask because of the aforementioned Nick-Blackburn-isms.
But yeah, playoffs.
Well, Pedroia only hit 17 homers--but then, he also plays in that big media market. That\'s surely part of it, too.
People like to say that Mauer would hit more homers if he moved to, say, 3B. Is there any truth to the idea that a player would be able to hit for more power with a less-demanding position change?
I think voters tend to pay too much attention to homers. Mauer didn\'t hit enough of them, so they forget about him.
Nope. There\'s the post above about behindthenet.ca. I checked it out. The author of the site clearly thinks along similar lines to many statisticians, but I would say his stats are in their infancy.
Heck, this may be BP\'s way of gauging interest in a hockey-related annual.
If so, let\'s hope 76 comments means something.
If BP made a Hockey Prospectus, I\'d be drooling over it.
Except that Sabean might well overvalue Uggla. Thinking of Randy Winn and Aaron Rowand off the top of my head...
Had the same thought. Gah.
Are there stats on it? I don\'t know if we can say he\'s Gold-Glove caliber out there without \'em.
Of course, there\'s the additional question of what it really means to be \"Gold-Glove\" caliber, since we\'re talking about an award Derek Jeter has won...
I have the same question. He\'s played LF and RF, but very little.
Some people made this point on the awful ESPN message boards as well. It has some merit, I think, but if one is going to attack Manny Ramirez, one shouldn\'t try to do it based on how he hit in his last month in Boston. There are plenty of other ways to do it. Certainly better ones.
Whoever does either deal isn\'t going to get value during the last two years of that deal.
True. My only beef with this is: If they\'re trying to get the runner in from third, a groundball or a sacrifice fly would have done it. The suicide squeeze is riskier.
And if Aybar is not the right man to hit a grounder to the right side, or hit a sac fly, get someone in there who is.
Was anyone else\'s first thought, on this play, \"The ground cannot cause a fumble\"?
There was nothing unambiguous about it. The ball is clearly in Varitek\'s control until he hits the ground. No amount of ESPN story-creation can change that.
Or that it was one of the worst decisions in LDS history.
How is Sabathia a land-mine? Everyone keeps seeing him as an injury-risk due to his weight, but he has yet to fulfill that risk. To me, Sabathia is the kind of guy you take that risk on, given what he\'s done and his age. Especially given a) TINSTAAPP (see Hughes & Kennedy), and b) guys like Sabathia don\'t show up on the free-agent market very often. I remember years when the Yanks and other teams have had to settle for big contracts to relative mediocrities because of the lack of big free-agent pitchers.
If you\'re the Yanks, you sign Sabathia AND Teixeira. Then, you hope Austin Jackson can play a credible CF.
What do you think?
Also funny is that Howard homered twice off lefties last night. Maybe Yost was right about this one.
I just checked their roster, and you\'re right--they have NO ONE who could be considered a decent righty bat off the bench. Although I bet they could find someone now that rosters have expanded.
Best case might be for Coste to catch full-time and for Marson to pinch-hit, but that\'s a little much to expect a rookie to do - pinch-hit for Ryan Howard.
How much do the Phillies, as an organization, seem to understand statistical analysis? I ask because they\'ve seemingly been trying to run Burrell out of town forever (or maybe that\'s just their fans), yet he\'s still there and mashing this year (in addition to what Joe mentions about not putting a righty between Utley and Howard, not benching Howard vs. lefties).
I once pulled 11 David West cards out of a 1989 Fleer pack. Too bad he ceased being a prospect.