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I'll say this: Rian's strategy may not be the best one but it does pose an interesting counter to Sam's. The two unintentionally came up with not only with different plans but basically opposite ones in terms of roster utilization. So while it seems pretty clear that leaving Posey and Bryant off in favor of Mr. Cerveza (that's it right?) I'm still intrigued by this theoretical match.
The potential for substitutions is both terrifying and magical.
You've brought up some interesting phenomena here; I certainly had never noticed this detail of RISP stats. The exit velocity data may be the key, giving some credit to hitters and their ability to prioritize contact at the expense of power. We might otherwise chalk the increased BA up to more pitches being in the zone, but your observation about walks being down and the exit velo numbers make that seem less likely. Some batted ball data such as zone% and contact% could shed light on this and further supporters the idea that this is a change in approach.
The super slow-mo of the Pillar catch is a moment of beauty. It's like he's dancing ballet out there.
No <span class="playerdef"><a href="http://www.baseballprospectus.com/card/card.php?id=58809">Didi Gregorius</a></span>? Is he above the age threshold? If not I can't understand his absence.
Very nice write-up Matt. I agree, Wong seems awful replaceable to guarantee money.
I guess I'm confused about what the alternative is. Don't you run into similar problems with every case, extenuating circumstances and specific defails that can cloud the role of the policy itself? How will the Reyes or Puig cases be more clear cut? I don't necessarily disagree with anything you've said, but I do think that the flip side is coming into the season with no decision and the issue looking and lingering for no apparent reason. Certainly I think Manfred wanted to exercise his power and show that MLB is not going to beat around the bush, which does seem an admirable goal.
My takeaway was that the sport hasn't necesarily been hospitable to it over the years if only for keeping pace with typical all-male athletic culture. Presumably there are numerous ballplayers who are gay but have not come out publicly, but still the sport seems underrepresentative of homosexuaity.
I don't know about this. A-rod and Papi are both "never play", and I think V-mart is on that list too. Their teams wish it weren't so, but with old and injury addled players it seems the hitting ability long outlasts the athleticism.
Reminiscent of the glory days of TA at the hands of <a href="http://www.baseballprospectus.com/author/christina_kahrl">Christina Kahrl</a>. Nicely done.
Awesome. I'm not sure how it could be done, but I would be fascinated to see a truly in-depth exploration of the the way these ideas are actually built into a major league team. From an outside perspective, it's probably information never to be gathered. But I do feel like baseball is itching for something new, something more than further crunching numbers and teaching your manager what WPA is. Hopefully we'll see something come along that totally blows our mind about how to think about the game.
Prefer took a lot of flak for allegedly not buying into framing, but i wonder if the Padres just felt that they could teach it? The unwillingness to trade Hedges amidst all the prospects moved might indicate it's not so much that they don't value catcher defense as that they felt they could replace it.
So you're argument is that the Twins should just keep doing what they've always done and wait for everyone else to start making mistakes? This is exactly the articles point. Where is the evidence that the Twins are trying to take advantage of other teams biases? One good run of winning seasons, but not particularly strong teams, in 30 years isn't much of an argument in favor. And, as Matt points out, why are these people all still here if they've never really been that successful? This isn't a perennial baseball powerhouse. This is a mediocre organization that has apparently never seen fit to try and improve how things go.
I have to agree with Matt and assume that the next five years the Twins will be better but not very good, draft worse because of it, still be unable to choose a good FA pitcher and cycle back into not being good. I don't see much to make me expect otherwise.
I think he did a fine job of postulating the Sox' reasons. But even though we don't have access to their internal metrics and scouting reports, we know that Navarro was available for basically nothing. So, yeah, we could assume they have a special sauce that will make Navarro good, but it's not really a useful assumption.
Funny how his career turned out. You would have thought he'd struggle to survive to age 30, and really the offense up to that point was just good enough. But then he kept having his best season at the plate for 7 more years... and his defense became terrible.
Perhaps the defense is benefiting Volquez, but Young has always survived on aberrantly low BABIPs, pitching in front of various defenses. Dave Cameron wrote about this earlier this year.
As for the projections, being wrong about certain pitchers a couple times doesn't prove a bias, unless you have a concrete reason to explain those errors. Which is basically what Matt addressed in the article regarding relievers.
Maybe the projections are bad for this team and will continue to be. But tue Royals aren't the first team to outplay projections two years in a row.
Curious that two top prospects with some similarities in their scouting reports are being called up for the same series, especially one that is so sure to be scutinized.
Where would the two be ranked on a current top- list? In similar spots?
I literally cannot understand half of what this kid is saying. That is some terrible grammar.
I'm confused about your conclusion: if we're nor certain whether the effects seen are a result of pitch count or times through the order, how do we know it's related to batter approach? You cite the vanishing effects when a reliever enters, but if the reresults are tied to pitcher tiring wouldn't we also expect that vanishing? As in, isn't it inconclusive that the effects go away when a reliever comes in?
I'm very curious to hear more about the lefty/righty situation. Why do you feel it's a bug? If there's an inherent advantage to being a lefty, why isn't this simply part of our conception of talent? This is not something I've really heard about nor therefore thought about so I'd love to hear you elaborate on it.
What kind of player does Jagielo figure to turn into? Is he more Mark Trumbo or Edwin Encarnación?
Isn't it that badness that kept him from being obscure? You notice when someone that bad sticks around.
They'll most likely hold on to him until whenever his contract is up, probably when he's not so great anymore, get nothing out of it and still not have a good team. It would just be too easy.
Thanks guys... guess I'll keep dreamin'...
This is anecdotal, but every Yankee fan will remember Chien-Ming Wang suffering a Lisfranc fracture running the bases in an inter-league game. Up to that point he had been a dominant young pitcher, thriving on massive ground ball rates, and he never recovered. There are many more stories I'm sure.
How do you monitor the throw-over rule? You can't have the distance being measured every pitch, and presumably if there's a penalty there's something at stake in getting the rule correct. Anyway, throws over and baserunning are part of the game, unlike wandering around the mound, adjusting batting gloves etc. I don't think they fall under the purview of this article even if you find them to be "boring". At least something can happen on a throw over.
I know Springer rates much higher overall, but how similar is his game to Slade Heathcott's? They sound roughly similar but I'm certainly no scout. Also I just want to dream of Slade all day long.
I don't think so. A lefty has an extra step, but the as long as there are no fielders anywhere near third base it makes a lot of sense. It may be that the number of hitters against whom the shift is employed is heavily tilted towards lefties, I don't know. but once the shift is in place, handedness doesn't really affect the advantage of the bunt attempt.
Excellent article. Pure Gold.
They conveniently made no mention of Lester's "substance" incident/enigma from last year. Those guys are junk to be quite honest and that network is pure homerism.
Bringing Brandon League into it now? That's ambitious...
"Catcher Who Reminds You of Your Dad" was worth the whole subscription.
I dunno, am I the only one who didn't like the deal in the first place? Upton has always seemed like he could collapse at any moment. He's never lived up to the potential from his prospect days and he's consistently shown the ability to make a lot of outs.
His demise reminds me of Figgins. Chone may not have been the exciting player Upton is (was?) but he was pretty good for a couple years there before completely vanishing.
I don't want to rain on anyone's parade, but scouting reports on high school players is a little esoteric. Now, I have no problem with them being here and I think it's cool that they're available. But in general more reports on major leaguers would be nice.
Maybe I'm just getting greedy...
1-1 counts aren't at bats that "ended early in the count". A 1-1 count would exclude only certain strikeouts and probably not most, though I obviously don't know the number off hand.
And I don't understand what you're saying about Darvish. If his first-pitch pitches "aren't as good" then that would be something to exploit. Just because it's a "subset" of his pitches doesn't mean it's not meaningful. If that subset (first pitches) isn't as good, as you say, then you disproved your point.
Nothing like running a player out of town. What good does it do after the fact to write stories that effectively spit on the guy? Good luck trying to win with Dickerson.
He's not better than Pujols.
Hughes' problem was never getting ahead of hitters. If I had a nickel for every 0-2 or 1-2 count that resulted in a BB or XBH I'd be a wealthy man. I loved the guy as much as anyone, I really wanted him to be a home-grown all-star, but watching his ineptitude at putting hitters away year after year got really old. I wish him luck, but I don't think he's gonna be much different of a pitcher.
4 races out of 13 with a consensus, one of which is just obvious, two that are pretty clear (LAD, STL). What exactly are you complaining about?
And Pedroia, on a team where he's got a lot more competition than Cano does.
This article had a number of typos and grammatical errors, and I'm not trying to be irritating, but the high level of writing and editing has always been (for me) a hallmark of BP, something a lot of other sites can't match.
Somehow, in 2011, Jeter's .040 points of OBP over Ryan, as well as slight increases in HR and SB, netted only .5 wins of BWAR. Baffling, honestly.
Does that really affect its usefulness? I mean, you can't figure it out?
These are the same people who said Craig Hansen was gonna be an All Star.
I can see where this is going: first people can't bear all the incorrect calls, then they cant bear to sit through the replays. Perhaps the solution is keeping them to a minimum, not to save time but so that the plays being reviewed are important enough to keep people's interest.
But seriously Phillips is pretty funny.
Without knowing about Fister's elbow, why should anyone have liked the trade? Yeah it turns out not to be so bad, but on paper it still sucks.
Also, regarding waiting on contracts, the issue with that analysis is it doesn't take into account context. Obviously, if every team waited in the hopes of a bargain none would get one. Furthermore, it doesn't look at contract length into account. You have to play early to get Choo or Tanaka, who, while expensive, might provide value for longer than just one or two years and who represent the most value possible to add. If you need to ad 10 WAR but don't have 5 positions, signing a number of low WAR but cheap players won't help. If you want to add 30 WAR total coming into next season, you likewise can't wait and fill in with bargain players. So it all depends on what you need and the market around you, though the findings are still interesting.
Also, Grady Sizemore? How many of these comeback deals are struck every year and never amount to anything? I get that doesn't matter for the Sox, but to me it's not very interesting.
Did the Red Sox retain key players? They lost Ellsbury, Drew, Napoli and Salty.
Don't you know how important intangibles are in baseball!? Get out of the basement nerd!
Even if they have, that won't be a failure. They're not relying on either for power, and while locking into so little power might be... uneven, the two can provide tons of value aside from that. Aside from that, Gardner's deal does not have a no-trade clause, and the contract is very tradable as long as he stays healthy.
This deal may not be one for the ages, but it's not, as a Yankee fan, to see them do it. These kinds of deals could help the Yankees avoid their monetary inflexibility and were something they previously claimed they "didn't do".
Not that they've had that many young players to play. Aside from the Joba mishandling they gave Hughes as many opportunities as were available, same with Gardner. Who else has come out of the system worth giving time to?
Any way to know how deliberate these trends are? Hearing someone in the organization espouse some facet of these findings would make it even more compelling.
Aside from that, is there any way to account for randomness such that we could say that its unlikely that these trends would emerge without an organizational philosophy? This is especially curious regarding free agents, who,for better or worse, are known commodities. Obviusly no pitcher is beyond developing any aspect of his game, but with someone with years of success in the league can we say we know that mechanics played a part in where he found a home? I guess what i mean is, how important are mechanics compared to what a player has already done/ can do?
In hindsight the trades Boston made for Bailey and Melancon really failed. Not that Lowrie or Reddick are lighting it up, but they have turned into valuable players. I guess this says something about the volatility of relief pitching etc. Etc.
Lee also said the Yankees were too old compared to the Phillies, even though at the time the Phillies average age was higher than the Yankees and (I think) highest in the bigs. A player's always gonna say good things about the team he signs with.
The arms-a-flailin' robot made me laugh. Why are emotions so much funnier on robots?
Cool article, I like the "all-time" bit. I know nothing about scouting, but I always hear people talking about backspin with power hitters. How is this assessed? Does it fall under the "mechanics" portion of the evaluation?
Also where would someone like Curtis Granderson rank in terms of power tool, as he hits a ton of homers out of very little contact?
...And if he hadn't been bad the first part of the season it would have been elite.
I agree with this idea a lot. Immediately upon finishing this article rather than considering whether I agree or disagree or coming to some other conclusion I found myself projecting this model into a bunch of applications. Patterns may not be immediately obvious from the breakdown here, but can we correlate these results with other measures of batter tendencies to find a pattern? Can we correlate them with historical knowledge about those batter seasons to answer the questions posed in the penultimate paragraph? Obviously this is a skeleton, but the figure that could be built on it could be very interesting indeed.
Let's make that "two star" and "3 stars", respectively.
Why is Sandoval in the three star tier? He seems to do everything better than his cohorts there and while he offers no SB so do a few of the 4 stars. Is he hurt and I don't know it or something?
How is a .268 TAv in RF worth 4.0 WAR? Even 25 SB seems like it can't justify that.
I think the list is more about players who SEEM like they have upside or are sneaky picks or breakout candidates than guys that most people will know to avoid. Everyone you listed has major red flags; BP here is trying to help us see those 1Bs that are more seductive but still a risk.
There's another possible angle, regarding contract negotiations. It could be that a team that does not want to actually hand out, say, $150 M is nonetheless able to acquire a player by offering the large contract with the opt out. Either the total money or the clause itself might be the difference between signing him and not. In that case, if the player does opt out after a few years the team has the money freed up for other purposes.
Obviously this is risky, as the team has no way of predicting (at least until close to the opt-out date) whether they'll be paying that money or not. However, with the backloading of contracts it's possible that, upon opt-out, even if the player would have been a bargain at the salary paid in the remainder of the contract the time he spent with the team was even more of a deal. Again, the player has to succeed for it to work, but that's not much different than any other contract.
For example, if Tanaka opts out after his fourth year he'll have been had on a 4 year, $88 M deal. If he's a 4 WAR player on average, that's a great deal, and the Yankees would never have signed him by offering only that amount. While they lose the final 3 years, there's no guarantee the production would continue. Though it hasn't worked out this way historically, these opt-out clauses could end up saving teams from albatross contracts while allowing them to retain some of the players production nonetheless. Could, of course.
It's worth noting that this metric isn't really a "stars and scrubs" type of descriptor. Obviously the very productive players will top out the Core Players list, but because of the way its calculated less robust production is scaled by team control and age. So a strong core could be constructed by a young cadre of not-necessarily-overwhelming performers. I'm sure some math could be worked out to describe this more concretely, but the upshot is that it's not simply a metric of performance.
I find this to be a very interesting and pleasantly straightforward analysis. It would be intersting to apply this calculation to a period of (past) years and determine correlations between various performance metrics (statistical performance, league rankings, titles etc.). Hopefully others will take up your research and expand its applications as it deserves.
What about following up on the idea of bad hitters hitting second. As in, rather than asking if we're seeing the better hitters in the game batting second, are we seeing fewer poor hitters bat second? This could be part of a trend, as managers begin to see the 2 spot as a high PA, high importance spot rather than a gap between the leadoff hitter and heart of the lineup. It seems like this might be a more likely way for this trend to start occurring, certainly one that's less "controversial" to traditional tactics.
On the contrary, this is the only thing I'll miss about Mr. Francisco.
Just a note: it should be "between him and me" not "him and I"
Honestly, this would be very exciting. We're clearly long past the days when most baseball players were very good at everything they do. Why would it be so bad to isolate those who can field and those who can hit?
Seems to me this won't happen because it's hard enough to find people as it is, much less twice as many.
Dude... just cause you have a DH doesn't mean your whole strategy is "wait for a homerun". Your argument is rather general and mostly inaccurate. Does the pitcher's batting spot promise (at least) one pinch hitter per game? Yeah. But how many NL teams actually have interesting hitters to put into that spot>
Maybe it's just me, but the "strategy" of more bunts and bench players getting at bats doesn't count as "exciting" nearly as much as someone good enough at their role to play everyday.
Last two comments: brilliant!
So many Yankees!
As someone who watched Beckett for a long time in the ALE (and hoping he would fail) I can say that it's never quite too late to count him out. He's never been consistent and has pitched whole seasons of replacement level or just above. That doesn't mean he'll round into form, but long stretches of mediocrity are not new to him.
Even with diminished power, Gonzo would be one of the best 1B in the league. 1B the past few years hasn't been the position it once was and that scarcity will drive up the value of the position's top performers even if they aren't what they were 3 years ago.
Excellent article Colin, it's great to hear someone so mathematically gifted also able to speak so eloquently and persuasively in plain English. Hopefully people out there agree with you.
Colin's point is that, even if he is trolling, he has a point, and if we ignore his point because we think he's trolling we're inhibiting ourselves and out pursuits with regards to baseball. Whether we have a meaningful conversation with Heyman or just with ourselves about what he brings up is irrelevant if we're leaning something about the stats we use and the problems we take on.
I don't get why people come and read this page without any prior knowledge of what it is. This is not a selection job by BP or any writer, it's a formula derived list. Should be obvious from the page, especially so if you read what AHLF is. But I guess people just like to peruse lists and then ramble on about the their merits without any knowledge. Sigh.
Doesn't seem like he's dishing out anything here. And the ranking is computed, not selected.
I do not know the story of Wally Pipp.
Great article. I really like this idea.
Should be StarliN Castro... not to be that guy.
This decline in the output of 1B makes me, as a Yankee fan, slightly less irritated by the decline of Mark Teixeira. Very slightly.
So what is DePaula's ceiling? Assuming some development on the offspeed pitches could he be an ace? Or is it more like #2-3 kinda guy?
career: .266 BA / .290 OBP
2013: .266 BA / .293 OBP
My first reaction was that it was overpay, but if Bourn keeps up his defensive prowess for even two seasons the deal will be pretty good. Of course, it's still pretty unlikely Cleveland is going anywhere with that rotation, so in the end it might not be worth it. But with two wild card spots maybe things are different.
Is there a way to make the GIFs collapsible? I love their inclusion but it's getting to a point where every BP article takes 10 minutes to load fully and can't be scrolled through with any ease. And my internet connection isn't crap. Being able to open and close them would be a nice improvement.
Nice article though, I remember discounting GIo for all of the above reasons before 2012 but man do I now wish the Yankees had tried to trade for him instead of Pineda.
Hilarious. The gifs are classic.
Would have been a lot more interesting for him to talk about things he's actually done, like how and why he revamped Gardner's swing. That would resolve the infinite generality of his instructions and also... be interesting.
No one seems to be noticing this. All these writers who are so upset and so judgmental now somehow never noticed any of this at the time it was happening. And now they're pushing this "we have to assume it was everyone, everywhere, the whole time". Well shouldn't you know? You were in the clubhouse, you talked to them, what's the deal? I have to believe that there are two other motivators: 1) they saw, they knew, but didn't want to say, and now they're using that knowledge without wanting to implicate themselves; and 2) they didn't know and never knew and are angry and resentful that they could have been duped, and now are trying to "get back" at the players who managed to hide this from them. Both are equally pathetic for different reasons.
The baseball writers are really losing this battle, whether they see it or not.
But in what way? 15 years is no good, neither is 5, so we just throw our hands up? There's never going to be a flawless voting system, or at least one that suits the needs of everyone, voter or fan or player. Trying to set up the system so that others will be forced to vote as you might or would doesn't really fix anything, it just adds another layer of complication. And shortening the total number of possible ballots only hurts the players, who are the ones least deserving. If you want to shake up the system I'm not in disagreement but remember that it's the Hall of Fame itself that allows the BBWAA to vote and determines the specifics. The problem isn't just "stupid" or "obstinate" writers.
I love this article - in all the Hall of Fame discussion it gets forgotten sometimes that even amongst "steroid associators" there is still a huge disparity. Clemens is unarguably one of the best pitchers of all time and I don't think anyone really believes his steroid use is what got him to the Hall. Moral arguments still remain, and will continue to hold for many I'm sure, but this kind of article reminds us that there's a lot more to great baseball in the 90's than steroids.
I'm a bit scared 15 won't be either.
Still, the 15 year rule allows for changing mindsets not to become impotent. Think about Bert Blyleven, who would not be in given a 5 year rule and who I believe is undoubtedly deserving. Also, the 15 year rule means that the recent popularity and prevalence of sabermetrics was able to influence voting on players who played at times when this analysis wasn't practiced. I think that's a good thing, as well possible future revelations that could reconfigure how we analyze baseball value.
And so what do we do? Make it a nationwide vote? There has to be some criteria for voting, in which case you can't even avoid the "status symbol" issue. What John is saying is that you hav to eliminate the extent to which voting is ONLY that, such as people who no longer follow or cover baseball. Of course this is not a perfect system either, and you'll always have obstinate and close minded folks involved in the voting. But it's not like the BBWAA is somehow overfull of ignorant or stupid people. I think your assessments are generally correct, but that changing certain elements of the process could quite well change the mentality, so that people will feel like it's a privilege yet still maintain voting rights within a (relatively) educated and informed group.
Awesome article, love the Joey Pos reference. I also love this sentence: "Our nation’s baseball writers have moved from failing to ask tough questions to failing to answer them..." Has everyone forgotten that these same writers never seemed to notice this rampant steroid use while it was happening? And now they want the privilege of adjudicating on the character of all these players? It's too convenient. Hopefully after a year or two they realize the futility of trying to keep steroids issues out of the hall and we can start celebrating unarguably great players that we had the privilege of watching play baseball.
I think it's deceptive to say he'll be back to who he was before 2012. Do we really know who that is? LaRoche has achieved a span of average play in an ingeresting way: lots of highs and lows. When he's healthy he tends to be good, and 2012 wasn't an exception so much as, as you pointed out, an aligning of stars already closely laid out. But he has posted TAv.s under .260 and has missed considerable chunks of seasons. He's a risk moreso than the 7 year average says; best case, it's a fine deal, but could 2013 be like 2010? It's worth noting that a below average 1B is a very different thing than an average given positional abundancy.
It's worth it - I think I've had a similar development but this one still holds up. Plus you have no idea all the jokes you didn't even know you were missing out on.
Still chump change compared to what they freed up. Still, it is curious that the players they targeted are pretty questionable. Moneywise, the Sox are hardly hindered, but what did they really gain? Napoli could crush in Fenway, but he's clearly more like an average 1B than anything Shane is sort of a Crawford light. Like R.J. said, if they do well we'll be saying it made sense, if not it'll look utterly pointless.
One month of observation is almost always going to be misleading regarding defense, as will even a whole season of FRAA or any other stat. We know, in general, that Markakis is good and McClouth is not, from years of scouting and combined metrics. Same with Davis. Players don't just get good at fielding suddenly at the end of a season.
Every vote counts for the award, so even downballot ones are just as important, at least in theory. Getting up in arms might be overreaction, but if you get #1 right and fail on #s 2-10, it's worth talking about.
Kinda sounds like he could be Aramis Ramirez 2.0, at least in terms of production. Is this accurate?
The Rangers are 5th in baseball with 116 HR; the leader is the Yankees with 153.
It's great to hear what you both have to say, but at the same time I would love to see this article expanded to include more scouts, outisde of BP. We already get both Bradley's and Kevin's perspectives and while I enjoy them both very much I would love to hear more from scouts around the league. I don't know enough to know how easy or feasible that is, and I know John Perrotto already includes this in "On the Beat", but, basically, when i read "What Scouts Are Saying" I expect (right or not) a variety of opinions.
Again, I trust and welcome both Bradley's and Kevin's insights. Consider this a confession more than a criticism.
Don't forget, he was killing it in spring for the Yankees last year too. It's never a question of results for him, you've just always got to hold your breath for when he gets hurt again. He's got a chance this year because Boston has had so many bullpen issues, but I'd put his 2012 IP at 7 and no higher. As a Yankee fan, I respectfully reserve the right not to root for him, right now at least.
Nova's definitely having a weird season: He's leading all MLB in OPS against and SLG against, yet he's walking just 2.7/9 with a K/BB of 3, representing a serious increase in K's from the past. With a .341 BABIP it's hard to say what's likely to happen. Is he more like his 4.76 FIP? Or his 3.89 xFIP?
There's definitely more development left, I see this as a transitional period.
It's the minors. No one has ever beaten the odds before? Anyone who is the best at anything is interesting, even if it's unlikely that skill plays up. You still miss the point, which isn't at all about his odds of sticking or getting better. He's the best. As long as he is, he's on the brink of being an interesting player in the majors.
I really liked the idea of watching Branyan launch moonshots over the short porch in New Yankee Stadium all year, but it looks like I'll have to settle for Ibañez particular brand of mediocrity.
Here's hoping he doesn't get released and gets into some games this year.
it would be great of there were a projected totals line along with the ten years, for the ten years alone and for career.
What is a guaranteed club option? Does that mean that Maybin can turn it down if he wants, but the Padres can't? Or is it just like another year on the contract?
Reading about the Twins is pretty depressing. Obviously the Mauer and Morneau situations are mostly bad luck (and Liriano too I suppose) but still, the Twins have dug themselves a big hole the past few years, starting, I guess, with the riduclous trade of Santana. It's hard to imagine that the same team signing Matt Capps and trying to win playoff games behind Nick Blackburn was consistenly topping out their division just a few years ago.
But the more I look at their roster and think deeply about what they've since done (and what they did even then), the more I have to believe it was flukey. They just really don't seem to be a modern baseball team at this point.
But then, I am most certainly kicking them while they're down.
Gotta do something to please the fans, right?
The Cardinals are between a rock and a hard place, and it isn't gonna turn out well for them in 5 years, is my bet.
I was really mad at you until this. Perhaps transmutation is the new market inefficiency?
I'm assuming the Teixeira regression is an improvement? I can't see him being lumped in with those who may have been playing a little over their heads.
So, this always bugs me and I promise this is the last time I'll say it but: It should be "25 words or fewer" not "less".
the my-sild part was the best. I hate when that happens.
It would be nice to see the graphs include (prospective) 2012 payrolls, just to get your point across. Perhaps a task for some time closer to opening day?
so a plural subject agrees with is? Shocking.
Love the pictures of Lester etc.
Not to be a dick, but this article could have used some editing. Great content as always, and I know you have a schedule to keep, but it is irritating to have to re-read sentences because there are extra words etc.
Bernie might be my favorite Yankee of all time, but his hall case is too similar to Mattingly's: a great enough peak to make us all salivate at the idea of his immortalization but a sudden drop off to keep his numbers all below the bar. Still, whether he gets in or not, he'll always be remembered for his ridiculous post-season exploits and how cool, collected and humble he was the whole time.
They can't even commit to rebuilding properly, much less actually accomplish it.
Overpaying, sure, but I'm not sure Willingham is "utterly replaceable". Do the Twins have someone in the minors who can hit 30 home runs and OBP .350?
not a bad trade for the sox, as Bailey is almost sure to help them out in the pen, which was noticeably short, and it's in no way guaranteed that either prospect will return more than Bailey will, but still, it seems backwards.
The sox need starters, and maybe Oakland can't help with that, and they also don't have the stacked farm system they often have in the past. So to trade two good prospects and get back only injury-addled relief just doesn't seem right.
$52 Million PLUS a contract. First of all. So, you think he's failed because he didn't throw $100 M at a decent chance of no return?
If you're a Yankee fan you should still have the horrible taste of Kei Igawa in your mouth and stay quiet. I know I do.
It's typical, of course, that he's gonna get paid more annually for his worst seasons than any others. I don't think this deal will kill the Phils, and they didn't have much of a choice, but it won't be looking good I don't think in '14.
But there's still the issue of what they missed, like Papelbon, Lester and Bailey. I think you're right, that now that 11-20 looks better, but it still has some serious issues.
Of course, so does the BA list.
It's kind of sad, too, to be at this point and realize that Liriano's career probably never WILL get back on track. Of course, it'd be sadder if I were a Twins fan.
And at which point did we start believing the BBWAA awards meant anything?
What exactly is your issue? That someone else was hired for some job and there hasn't been a thorough analysis of an GM who has yet to make any moves? Why don't we let something happen, like, say, a trade, or a draft, and then talk about the things being done by someone.
Wow! A quote about something! What a definitive and impressive commitment to evaluating the work of a professional writer!
It's not like Lee is gonna bring back much of anything in the first place, and Wandy is one of the few actually valuable players on the team. It's worth it to have pitchers who go out and don't get bombed every game, especially moving into an offense heavier league in a couple years. So, they can eat his whole salary, trade him for basically one top prospect and a couple decent guys, who will MAYBE turn out to be valuable and then lose all that money for other purposes, of they could hold on to him, have an actual pitcher and keep the money for things that are actually valuable, like signing some FA in a couple years.
As said above, we're not sure what ownership is willing to spend in any given year, so assuming they should shell out cash indiscriminately is presumptuous at best.
Who else are they gonna get? Fielder for a bit less? No guarantee you'll win that bid and save any substantial chunk of money. It's not like they had the opportunity to spend half as much on 75% of the production.
Deals don't exist in a vacuum, so though he will almost certainly be overpaid by the final 5 years, that doesn't mean the deal wasn't the right move.
It's worth noting that the performance of those players has zero relevance to Pujols trajectory.
I can't wait for the Angels to sign Wilson on his terms and end up with a total albatross in 3 years.
Hopefully (for them) their new GM will attempt not to be Tony Reagins 2.0... but somehow I won't be surprised to see him set the tone as more-of-the-same. After all, if the Angels become financially responsible and evaluatively intelligent I won't have nearly as much fun in the upcoming season as I usually do.
.752 OPS over the last 4 years from 1B. There's just no value in that. At all. He's not even better than Casey Kotchman.
I can't wait till a manager has a run expectancy chart in the dugout. I mean, aside from split stats and scouting reports, I can't imagine information i'd rather have.
Agreed. WIth your top 3 starters so good, how can you put Wolf in there? I guess it's because he's such a gamer.
On another note, how many times was it mentioned how bad Wolf has been against the D'backs this year? I found it difficult to watch the game not because I'm not a fan of either team but primarily because the quality of the announcing and analysis was so bad. At one point they actually showed the records for each team in elimination games ALL TIME. As in, ALL BREWERS AND D"BACKS TEAMS EVER. And, no one thought to point out how universally useless this stat is. I wish we could get a BP broadcast of postseason games, but I guess that's the stuff of dreams.
Don't we all miss Mr. Sheehan? I'm not sure he can be replaced.
The Indians should realize they aren't winning with their roster and go back into the rebuild mode they were in. Attempting to win this year was like shooting themselves in the foot, but they gotta suck it up, not make any big moves but just try to hold on to their real assets. Keep Carmona, let Grady go, keep Choo and try to work on a pitching staff for 2013 or beyond, not 2012.
I guess I just feel like, looking at his whole career, there's no reason to think any of it will be sustained. Yeah, if he hits more homers he'll be valuable. But he won't. At least that's what I think.
Yankees were pulling in 49.5/G before moving to the new stadium.
I don't see the Jays going for him. They'd have to be all in on him, which is maybe more than they want (10 years? $200 MM?), which means doing nothing else. If they can't outbid the Yankees, which they'd have to in order to lure him, they are somewhat screwed.
Unless you believe that, if they can't get something as good as CC they might as well hold pat. Which, given the East, is possibly true.
.382 BABIP scares me. What makes the "recent" hot stretch at all believable?
I almost see what you're saying, but the fact remains that they have scored the 5th fewest runs in the league, putting them seriously behind Boston, New York and Texas. Even if you only allow 1 or 2 runs, you still have plate a few to win.
I love this - a really impressive article.
I guess this is their way of saying they plan to be rebuilding in 3 years after finishing in the NL Central basement a few more times?
Well, obviously, at least 2 people do.
As a Yankee fan, I never want to hear anything more about Gerrit Cole.
If Curtis sticks around he qualifies.
The problem is that now Posada is raking (.417/.442/.563 in 16 games), and I for one don't believe he's completely cooked. I'd rather have Montero in AAA for a few more weeks than playing 3 times a week.
On the other hand, you couldn't be more right about Gordon. Why bother going out and getting this total question mark when you've got perfectly good ones with futures to look towards? Hector Noesi is pitching out of the pen right now when he could be making Gordon's starts. I don't really get it. If he's not ready for the bigs, they could get a Gordon type for his role. If he is, let him start and skip the signings.
I think the problem will, for the most part, resolve itself, as Garcia/Colon start to have trouble, Posada shows complete uselessness and, most importantly, time passes. But it's a weird situation.
Just to clarify, are you criticizing the Yankees for not making risky/ high ceiling picks?
Also, I've heard (from the Yankees) that they were trying to bring in power and position players. If this was their goal, based on the draft and their picks, does this explain their not making a splash?
Let's not forget that no one pegged Kennedy to be that good and he's currently having success in a division about 50% of what the AL East is. And they got Curtis Granderson in that deal.
Great story, there's certainly a lot to dig into here.
What about black people, short people, dead people and people who label?
We'll have plenty of opportunities to see him, wherever he is.
I read it that way first too, but it does say "dropping TO 207 pounds..."
I see the Yankees topping 1000 RS before the Sox. But that's just me.
Amazingly Helton was available in my 18 team H2H league. Thanks for the heads up.
Wow Carmona just shat all over your review here. I think he's a good pick like you say, but he apparently doesn't wanna cooperate.
If you think the gap between team payrolls is too big, why is your problem with the Yankees and not with the other teams? Few teams have small payrolls because they're "poor", they just don't want to spend so much. The Steinbrenner's are not the richest baseball owners, just the one's who spend the most on their team. If that's spoiled and money-grubbing, maybe all teams should be this way.
Wouldn't 6-5 be 45%?
Buchholz has no questions to answer because of his .263 BABIP and lackluster peripherals? Let's not get carried away.
Maybe we can let him get 2000 PA before we start throwing around claims like that. No doubt the guy's good, but he's only even had 2 seasons of over 130 games.
2010 wasn't a breakout year for him? At age 29 he had a .950 OPS (150 OPS+). How can you expect him to get any better than that?
All this is wonderful... but ultimately unhelpful. I can't decide if I want to skip him altogether or if i let history be my guide and try to get a 28 year old hitting his stride.
He's not a future ace, but that doesn't mean you have to be skeptical. The hype right now is that the yankees need any starter and he's looked great, even if taht evaluation doesn't take into account his ceiling.
And: 1) Chamberlain is really good and still only 24; 2) Melky was only ever hyped by those who didn't know anything; 3) Arodys is a great prospect, I don't see how he was overhyped the guy's not even 20 yet.
The expansion of this database could also give us a way of comparing team medical staffs against one another, though there would always be a limit to the possible sample size of any group's set.
So is this it for Feliz? Is Texas really gonna put a premiere talent in the pen permanently without even trying him out in the rotation?
Having watched the career of Joba Chamberlain with disappointment and disgust I can only shake my head at such decisions.
Joba rules ok... but the Hughes rules? I don't really remember those being weird or annoying or hurting Hughes at all.
Hermida intrigues me. He's had a good walk rate his whole career (except '10) hit for good power in the minors. How many times have we seen 27 year olds suddenly figure it out?
Of course it could just as easily not happen, but somebody's probably gonna end up getting value out of the guy at some point down the line.
I'm confused: are you saying Stubbs should or shouldn't lead off?
Last year only 7 players who were predominantly starting CF hit 20 or more HR, and only 3 hit over 29, the most being 34. If we include those who also played LF or RF substantially, it's 9 players. Doesn't seem ridiculous to me.
I think it was pretty straightforward. He'll be great, as in he'll do well and have value, but he won't be one of the unique players of the league and he won't help in every category.
What Monopoly? Have the Yankees now bought every player in MLB?
Hank's just trying to follow in Daddy's footsteps. Point is he wants his money to spend on his team. And he's not afraid to say so.
What's the value of Jesus Montero?
Only in a kind of disastrous future...
And yet his numbers are more in line with the 3-stars even though they're conservative for his environment. The only thing he really lacks is power and he's not terrible for that.
I can see him in either tier, but it's not really a stretch that he's in the 3's.
Plus, you can't target one player and use that to refute PECOTA. The system may be down on him, maybe it always was, and maybe it gets him wrong often. I don't know the history. But even if it does that could be just because Pedroia lacks good comps or defies the trajectory of those comps. That's why its called a projection and not production.
And for what it's worth, CAIRO has him at a HR every 44 PA.
A-rod was still averaging a full WAR less than Pujols for the 6 years preceding his new contract (according to BR) and was playing a more defensively demanding position (and playing it not as well). Is the elbow a concern? Sure, but that it hasn't affected his play yet has to count for something. Maybe Hanley or Tulo would have been a better choice for my hyperbole, but I still maintain that Pujols' deal will not (ever) be considered one of the worst. That was the real point.
I don't argue on the first two counts, but it seems unlikely that whoever signs Pujols will get at least 8 years of great. Can we be sure of that? no, but if there was ever someone to gamble on its him. Even if his deal is for 12 years or someting, it's gonna be so valuable for the first 2/3 I think it'll be fine.
Of course coming to the AL so he can run out his time as a DH would help nicely, but even so, I can't expect it to be one of the worst.
For what it's worth, SG at RLYW and his system (CAIRO) came up with the same outcome for the top of the AL East. Obviously this doesn't represent the whole rest of the media but i don't thin these projections are unprecedented.
You think he can't hit enough for LF but want him at DH? I don't see how he could be any better there than in the OF.
Personally, I feel that this comment has nothing to do with baseball, and should not have been made on a website like Baseball Prospectus.
Let's say Vizcaino doesn't get hurt and continues to produce all year (even if not quite the level he was at). Could that have pushed him into 5 star territory?
Also, it was basically right for: McCann, Victor, Jorge, Soto and Montero. If you're looking only at BA that's not the best way to judge PECOTA in general.
Yeah, I love this idea that Wells > Napoli + Rivera. It's just... the Angels are a scary team, no one else manages to win so much despite doing everything they can to resist this.
According to BR's WAR:
past 3 years: Rivera (.6) + Napoli (2.3) = Wells (2..9)
So the Angels accomplished nothing but adding millions to the payroll.
You want "good" there, as you're describing a noun and not a verb.
What part of this is so hard to understand? There is no purity to the record books: should we remove everyone from pre-integration? Everyone who played with someone using amphetamines? Ty Cobb was a douchebag, he's out too? There is no standard for purity here, only the fact that fewer things were reported and you weren't alive back then.
So you, the sanctimonious penitent of the record book, will just have to click the minus button for all of those possible defilers whose cases you have ignored, leaving temple to baseball history eerily empty.
I don't know what you mean by "surroundings." He's been a legit number 2 in the AL East for 3 years, even with a fluctuating K rate. The guy is good, and being in the AL East makes it really hard to carry the overrated tag. Where is he gonna go where he's less likely to continue slightly outperforming his peripherals? The guys ERA ha been about .2 runs lower than his SIERA, again in the hardest league. I'm not seeing the risk.
I'll wait till his results match his apparent issues before writing him off. Keep in mind he's been pitching in the toughest league in the bigs for 3 years - the 3.86 ERA and 1.25 WHIP he's posted there is nothing to scoff at.
Not to mention that he's averaging 197 IP those 3 years and is only 26. Moving to the weaker NL central could offset the concerns of poor defense, especially for someone who doesn't rely much on groundballs for outs.
That may be, but none of that indicates that he's not capable of a breakout at any point. Hoe much you wanna bank on it may be mitigated by his history, but SIERA is telling that he's consistently done some things quite well regardless.
I don't think it's late blooming at all. Despite how well Beltre worked out, there was concern, especially amongst Sox fans, last year that the team hadn't added top tier talent like they wanted playing on their team. Again, aside form Beltre, that turned out to be true.
Yankee and Sox fans don't want cutsie efficient moves, they want the biggest and brightest.
Manny Acta always impresses me when he speaks. Too bad it's so uncommon to hear simple straightforward intelligence in the baseball world.
Dombrowski tries so hard to be one of the cool GMs...
Neither the Yankees nor the Sox have the most lists and Cincy is not the only one with only one out. All the sites make lists for all the teams, so I'm not really sure what you're complaining about.
De la Rosa would be a disaster in the AL East. He is not really a candidate.
Are we really so devoted to the idea of neutralizing all outcomes of context? Yes, "in a vacuum" Pujols was better. By a bit. But the MVP has never been about exactly who was the most valuable, regardless of how the voting has changed or not. Whether you go by HR or WARP, the voters are interested in what actually happened in baseball in any given year. This year, the Cards weren't a good team and in their own division were upset by the upstart Reds and their just barely worse than Pujols first baseman.
If you wanna know who led the league in WARP, which I often do, look at the leaderboards. You can even do that on different websites that have different ways of calculating it. But if you want to give an MVP award, which is absolutely contextualized by a baseball season, then you're not worried about shorting Pujols an award he'll undoubtedly win again in the future.
The MVP is a narrative, and while I want that narrative to include an understanding of stats etc., to denounce it because there was a rather obvious and compelling story line as opposed to a rather ho-hum Pujols-did-it-again "actual" outcomes, is not "helping" stats at all.
I do believe he immediately said "Greinke is better than Baker" and his reasoning for not going after him wasn't that he wasn't an upgrade but that he wasn't at the right price. Maybe this is still stupid, but at least respond to what's in the article.
Jackson led the majors in BABIP with an absurd mark, and was one of only 9 players with a BABIP over .350. Other than that he posted an unspectacular .052 IsoD and a rather anemic .107 IsoP. Basically,
Had he posted a league average .296 BABIP we would be talking about his season completely differently. So yeah, he's only 23, but he also has never developed the power he was supposed to and, unless he keeps his BABIP 66% better than average he's gonna be a 4th outfielder, at least until he develops some patience or pop.
Why would the Yankees take on a huge contract for a player who's been struggling to be mediocre in the NL West? Just because they have money doesn't mean they have infinite of it or that they are always willing to spend more. Zito sucks, we want Cliff Lee and we're not taking on $50 in payroll, so, you know who we're going after.
This is a really intruiging idea.
What about trying to build a package around Hanson for Fielder? I don't really know what else it would take though, and I don't know what the Braves have to offer.
I can't imagine anyone having any reaction to the signing of Contreras other than a kind of uneasy sickness. The guy is just painful to watch.
No Rivera? Is that not the most clear cut case of just who you want in a specific spot every single time?
I realize what the numbers say... but I also know i would never choose any relief pitcher of Rivera in any situation.
For what it's worth, Rivera had by far the best batting line against of all the mentioned pitchers, leading Bell, Soria and Wilson by at least .075 in OPS against:
Rivera: .183/.239/.254/.493 (career: .210/.263/.290/.552)
That's right, his career OPS against is lower than all three. That's over 4,581 PA in 1,150 IP.
And his 4.09 SO/BB ratio trails only Soria's 4.44
Don't you have to choose him?
It does seem like the Twins need to add something dangerous - facing Bick Blackburn and Brian Duensing in postseason games is a great thing as a non Twin.
But that lineup is lookin better than it has in years, so maybe this would work out.
I think the whole point is that they did run - but because of the catchers, NOT out of the inning. An 80% success rate is adding a lot of runs for other teams on the bases.
This is such a pathetic outlook: Baseball has free agency, the Yankees use it to the best advantage. Why does this make you so upset? The Steinbrenners are in no way the wealthiest of baseball owners - stop resenting their usage of systems open to all teams and pay attention to where the iniquity really lies. When multi-billion dollar owners relegate their teams to mid-pack in terms of payroll, is that any one's fault but theirs?
And since we're on the subject, I'm glad you mentioned Jeter, Mo, Posada, Pettitte, Hughes and Cano, not to mention numerous players not being overpaid who greatly contributed to this teams success. You can't just cherry pick a few names an call your whining baseball analysis.
Don't be mad at the Yankees because they spend their money - as HeavyHitter points out, the Pohlads have even more money than the Steinbrenners - so who's screwing shit up here?
Dudes's started 212 of the past 296 games. Calling him a part-timer is stupid because it misses that 1) it's his second year, and 2) it fails to mention that minor injuries made a bit dent in that number.
And really what has he done? They don't like him but they seem to have little to say about his actual issues - maybe if they would tell us about these it would seem less like a bitch fight.
I'm gonna say I prefer to see "best hitting prospect in the minors" as often as possible.
I love it. The vaunted Red Sox trainers have sent two players back to the bigs before they were ready, extending their injuries and keeping them off the field.
Is this how you play the game right?
The point isn't that he's not there, it's that he's on the team ahead of them in the standings and OPS+ing 160. This is a classic bait and switch, Ozzie really has nothing to say so he just talking about something not really related. Bringing back Dye would have been stupid, is supposed to somehow make not bringing back Thome less stupid? I don't think so.
The consolation prize for Guillen in return for Thome's 17 HR and 44 RBI? Juan Pierre's 80 OPS+in the DH slot every once in a while and the chance to write different lineup cards ever few days. But hey, why don't you just yell at him for something else? That would help us all forget about how stupid a decision it was and how badly it's bitten them in the ass.
If he leads the league in homers he'll garner a few 5th place votes, but even the BBWAA can tell he's not on the level of a Hamilton or Miggy, plus he plays for a team that really had no shot.
In a competition for the most value SIERA isn't really useful. Yeah, it's important when talking about who's the best, but MVP isn't really that (even if it should be), it's simply who's done the most.
Further, the mention of the pitchers was done while simultaneously dismissing all of them, as Christina explains. Whether that analysis is complete or not is irrelevant if we're not really considering them.
And of course doesn't suggest random variation? You,re talking about splits on less than a full season's worth of data and a notoriously mediocre hitter becoming an mvp candidate because of a total reversal compared to career norms. So if you wanna chalk it up to something they put in the fenway park water fountains go ahead, I'll respectfully remain skeptical and wait for a regression.
For what it's worth, Navarro was originally signed by the Yanks, then went to Arizona in the Randy Johnson deal before heading to the Dodgers.
Not sure if that works against what you're saying though...
Since I don't feel like registering at the Herald I'll just put this here - The article on Dice-K relies mostly on career winning percentage and that horrible, all to common in Boston writing technique of cherry picking stats. "If you take these 4 games this year and these 7 games this year and these 3 games over here..." Unfortunately for the Sox, they have to take every game he pitches, not just the ones he pitches well. And do we need to get into why winning percentage on a team that's tops in runs scored every year is a meaningless stat?
Is this deal better than what the Yankees could offer? By the sound of it, and from what was reported to be offered, Chamberlain, Nova, McAllister and Banuelos/Noesi would be slightly weaker at the ML level, though providing a pen arm which is really more vital, but stronger on future innings eaten.
I really wanted Cashman to get this deal done and seeing the almost nothing package the Angels surrendered makes it even worse.
No matter what the numbers say, Logan is terrible. I simply have no confidence in his ability on the mound. It should be noted that part of the reason for the disparity statistically is that Girardi continues to use Marte in spots against righties. He has somehow accumulated 31 PA against righties, whom he has walked 8 times and struck out only once. Yes, that's right, ONCE.
Logan is truly pathetic, as his career K/BB rate of 1.67 and WHIP of 1.693 demonstrate, and the numbers aren't really better against lefties.
Given that he is good at this, can you say that it counters any range issues? Can you say that just because he's good at this it's worth enough to offset his bat?
As a Yankee fan I see something similar with Teixeira, who is rated negative but is really good at scooping throws. However, being able to see this doesn't mean we can pencil either in as positive - we can't pencil them in as anything other than "good at scooping."
The metrics have issues, but you can't make any kind of direct comparison between something put into numbers and scouting.
They rank 22nd in the majors in runs, 23rd in HR, 14th in BB, 26th in OPS, and 27th in TB. They're below average in every standard offensive category except GDP and SB. Beyond the standard ones, they're 26th in wOBA (.312) and, as Patrick said, 21st in TAv.
I don't see how you can claim this is one of the best offenses in baseball, it is by almost every measure one of the worst. Even if you wanna cry Petco Field you're talking about a team that walks and runs the bases and does little else.
1) If you're concerned with how much he's missing bats, K/PA isn't what you want anyway - you want to be looking at pitch data and seeing how many pitches are actually swung at and missed.
2) You can break down K rate or swing and miss rate to the most basic, but will that really tell you about the pitcher? Whether you use K/9 or K/PA doesn't really change the scouting report on the guy.
It's certain that the fault lies with DE and not with your eyes, of course.
Yeah I don't see how you've got Buchholz Price and Niemann and no Hughes. And no Braun. I was so surprised by this Torres guy being selected I looked him up and... well he's completely average. I just don't see that one.
I'm down with this.
Career numbers as a starter? Prior to this year, the 23 year old had 28 starts. You think that's a meaningful benchmark?
With a career line of .282/.348/.388, I think the time to worry about Bartlett's becoming replaceable is long past.
I don't see how Oswalt fits with the Yankees. They currently have 5 starters who could be a number 2 or 3 on most teams, why would they want an aging one who's in decline?
Berkman at DH would be nice, but they also have the best offense in the majors. This is one of those rumors that I just don't buy.
Being a Yankee fan, I hate this guy.
I think that's supposed to be Julio Borbon, not Pedro Borbon.
Cool article. I think your analysis of Chadwick's methodology is important - SABRmetrics isn't just a bunch of new ways of looking at the same things in baseball but is a shift in how baseball value is viewed and interpreted in general. Understanding method in this way is as important as any actual analysis - without this understanding stats can become "empty" in the way their opponents think of them. Avoiding this kind of error is what makes it possible for stats to meaningly redefine the game.
On the same note, this kind of analytical writing is great to see - kind of like a sneak peek inside the BP hive-mind that gives me confidence in what's being done here.
What does "with club officials ready to concede the obvious that he is better suited to pitching in relief" actually mean? Has someone actually said anything? Or has he simply had a few bad starts? I have heard nothing along these lines so far all spring, in fact the entire organization seems to be purposefully saying nothing about it.
Even if Jackson takes a similar step forward in 2010 he'll still be only a (good) number 3. As a Yankee fan, I know Kennedy quite well and just don't see him ever being better than a 4-5 guy. Those players certainly have value, but to give up such a good prospect for them is just silly.
Neither of them will achieve what Scherzer could, and even if he never does and it works out well for the D'backs you have to question what made them pull the trigger on this one. It just doesn't add up.
I remember having so many of these arguments in which Jeter's main claim were intangibles. It made so much sense when I was 12 to think about how he played the game the right way, and his clubhouse leadership. Now if only mainstream analysis could reach puberty, maybe we'd be getting somewhere.
This happens every year with the Marlins, and every year they do way better than they're supposed to. I just always assume they'll be in the wild card hunt until mid August and then flame out a little and lose the spot by 4 games.
Isn't that how it always goes?
So, Hendry looks at the numbers, but in the end, chooses to skew them as not that important or altogether meaningless. Is this not just perpetuating the "issue" with these stats that he's complaining about?
The more I hear the more I'm glad I'm not in Chicago.
I could agree with this if there were any discovered reason for the drop in power. I'm sure Mets fans and people in the organization know more than I do, but I have yet to hear a solid theory about what happened. As that is the case, it makes good sense to assume that the man will continue hitting the way he always has, especially since power was the only area where he suffered last season.
Lemme see if I understand this. The "bio" projection is the one that PECOTA spits out based purely on comparable player performance while the "forecast" projection takes that and adjusts it for the park?
I feel like I should be able to figure this out on my own.
Then go read an article actually explaining the reasoning behind DIPS. The correlation year to year on hits and hit types is very small. The correlation year to year on Ks and BBs are much higher. What other kind of proof do you need?
Part of the point of the SIERA posts was that HR rate does not actually have a very high year to year correlation and is not as much of a pitcher skill as was originally assumed by DIPS metrics.
And what if Matsui's knees give out and he plays 45 games? No matter what you say, lackey was the best pitcher in the rotation and would be again in 2010. As far as relying on bullpen pitchers... well that just never works out well.
And finally, can we stop the Scoscia fellation? The man is no god, and that he's had teams that outperform run differential calculations should not be immediately attributed to him. The worst part about it is that if the Angels underperform and simply don't overperform their pythag all we'll hear about is how Scoscia couldn't have done anything about it, since, clearly, he's so good it couldn't be possible that he doesn't improve the team. The man has somehow created a cult in his name, I can't wait for the Angels to miss the palyoffs so we can start dispelling this notion.
Bradley's a total douchebag and one of the few players in baseball for whom chemistry might be a concern. You can say all you want, which is probably right, about how this is not something that should be privileged over talent/production, but Bradley has worn out his welcome in every city he's played in, and being an asshole constantly has an effect.
What's important really is if he produces: when he does, he doesn't bitch and he isn't an issue. If he's hurt and not doing well, he'll both be creating outs and creating controversy and won't last long.
What about the effect of game completion on run scoring? When you have 6 innings to score a run compared to 2 innings, doesn't the math change? That is, if we're going to consider run expectancy, shouldn't this be contextualized?
I'd like to see leverage factored in here somehow. Others allude to a similar addendum that would consider game/ runner/ fielder situations. What I'm curious about is the effect to which the run on third is important to the team. As you point out (or seem to be) the third base coaches job is to score runs, not to have safe baserunners. Doesn't this mean that when you calculate the average runs scored in a given situation, inning should be taken into account? When your team is down a run in the 8th, the break even point may be different as would the overall chance of scoring a run before the end of the game.
It may be true that teams on average leave runners on base over the course of a year, but are all those runs of equal value? Wouldn't the break even point be context dependent?
Why won't the Mets sign Carlos Delgado? For that matter, why won't anyone sign Carlos Delgado?
I'd like to point out that he'll be just 26 this coming season. His numbers have gotten better 3 years in a row, he could be for real.
There are other teams?
There's more to a division than it's aggregate winning percentage though. The AL East has housed 3-4 of the best teams in the game the past 3 years, but they suffer in terms of wins/losses because they've also had bad teams. When I think of the competitive AL East I think NY, BOS and TB, a top 3 I think are unmatched baseball. It's the hardest division to win in, and that's what I take to be meant by "strongest."
I love hearing from teams like the 'Stros and Pirates about how good their roster is. They seem always to forget that that roster has to be compared to all the others in the division and league.
Kansas City, of course, takes the cake in this department. The way they talk is far and away the most divorced from the final standings.
I would guess that PECOTA is universally conservative on the effect of defense on pitching. I can't really support this, but just glancing at those defensive projections it seems like they're all a bit lower than they were last year. On top of that, PECOTA looks at at least the last 3 years for its projections, and Lee's 2007 was not good at all, nor were his other seasons (except 2005) at all like his last 2. Those 2 factors probably combine for his conservative projection.
For what it's worth, your Batista link to his awful 2008 actually goes to the 2005 Rockies.
He probably doesn't do it, lazy speech is the cause of this dropped syllable. People are confused by the "erer" succession and just mumble and clip it to a single muffled "err." Happens all the time.
I think the use of home run distance is meant to target this issue. Home run rates are more likely affected by distance to the wall than the distance the ball is actually hit.
You're confusing the author's overall goal with his goal in this piece. This study in no way informs a team about contract value or expected performance. The point of the study is to inform further studies (such as of contract value) by determining a general trend in player aging. Obviously any such study will have to be generalized and applying this trend to any particular player will be problematic. But in order to have a general understanding of player aging, you have to do a general study.
Doing so does not defeat the purpose of the study as long as it is properly understood what we're being told, which is that of all players good enough to play for ten years (and there are a lot in there who really are not good) the general aging curve peaks at around 29.
This data can then be used for further studies, which might yield the answer to the questiong: "should we sign this pitcher through age 44?"
He's basically Drew, sacrificing average and SB (well, 2) for HR and RBI.
WHere's Nick Swisher? 30 HR, 80 R and 80 RBI has to be top 10.
His speed was a waste in center, as the metrics show. Given Fenway's unusual dimensions, his speed in left may allow him to be significantly more valuable than his actual skills are, covering a lot of what little ground is out there and hiding his arm.
That aside, if he can post a near 100 OPS+ and add on 70 SB, he'll be at least as valuable as the average LF.
Still, at 4 years and nothing ridiculous the Mets look good compared to the Cards. If it was gonna take 7 to land Holliday you have to go with Bay and if it burns you 1/4 or 2/5 years you have the money to deal with it. Hopefully. Except that its the Mets so they'll end up with 3 or 4 of those scenarios and be screwed.
What about looking at stats other than WOBA? You say the same calculation can be done, shouldn't we be using some average of different stats to account for possible variance? No single stat is comprehensive.
Delgado has played no fewer than 139 games in any year except last since coming to the mets, and in that time has .267/.351/.506/.857. I'll take Will Carroll's advice over yours.
I think the flaw is in the project: you can't make a list like this that includes prospects that won't have problems. There aren't 20 players who are head and shoulders above all the rest. This list is as much about the players as about Kevin and his predictions for the next decade.
You can't expect a performance based analysis including prospects to make perfect sense.
First: Damon is looking for a 3-4 year deal; assuming he can be had for one or two is wishful at best, especially considering how his speed and grit will entice certain front offices.
Second: Hinske over Matsui/ Thome? Matsui's knees held up with a little care and should in the near future as well (he should never play in LF again) and he absolutely destroyed. Thome may be more of a risk having declined the past years, but if you have a DH spot you're not gonna slot Hinske in everyday. He's a perfectly average hitter prone to sub 80 OPS+ seasons, no matter how good he is at working a walk.
If by "snarky" you mean includes an opinion...
According to this it would be 50% wrong since you're both agreeing on the contract.
When you look at it, the Yankees are way deeper on the bench and in the pen. You've gotta like them late in games.
Again we have a comment on managerial disparities having significant effect in the upcoming series. Didn't we learn our lesson with all the Scoscia love coming into this one?
Chances are both managers will make typical decisions, a few bad ones and a few good ones. The bad ones might lose a game, the good ones win one. But is Manuel somehow immune to this? Is he going to use Lidge with the game on the line? Because then he automatically fails.
I'm tired of comparing managers. It means next to nothing.
This article has some very awkward moments and was kind of hard to read. Anyone else find that?
Maybe it wasn't the Royals fault, but the question remains: why did they rush him? As said in the article, they weren't about to contend or even come close, so shipping him up to the big leagues without time to adjust (as all minor leaguers do) was totally unnecessary. Maybe it didn't hurt him, but it didn't help and was totally unnecessary.
At the very least we can look at this series of events and compare the Royals to a 4 year old with a new toy. They didn't have the patience to allow him to mature and develop but rather just wanted to get the next George Brett on the field.
I think it\'ll be interesting to see if Bruney can demonstrate his talent level over a full season. Injuries have limited his effectiveness with the Yankees but anyone who has watched him has to be impressed. He comes right at hitters (even if he sometimes misses his locations) and he has great power stuff.
Despite his lack of durability and his terrible BB rate in \'07 he\'s been one of the reliable bullpen arms since coming from Arizona and i think he\'s got a chance to really show people how great he can be this coming season.
You actually think they have a pro Yankee bias? I think that\'s the most absurd thing I\'ve ever heard. They complain constantly about how the Yankees run their team and vilify them on an almost nightly basis. Not to mention that their poster boy for baseball analysis, the ever more senile Mr. Gammons, is one of the biggest Red Sox homers I\'ve ever encountered.
Yeah really, how are we even putting Orlando Hudson and C.C. in the same sentence?
Hudson - complete no DL season 1x
Sabathia - 180 INN 9x
No less of a risk? What?