Ben Clemens FanGraphs Chat – 6/22/20

2:30
Ben Clemens: Hey everyone, and welcome to the chat.

2:31
Ben Clemens: I’m sure we’re going to do our fair share of talking about whether there will be a season or not, but let’s make sure not to neglect talking about food, board games, and weird baseball hypotheticals.

2:31
Ben Clemens: Obviously starting with the season, though :/

2:31
Chris: The players are going to say no during your chat right?

2:32
Ben Clemens: Definitely could be the case!

2:32
Ben Clemens: We’re at a pretty interesting place here where I don’t know, the owners are doin some weird second brinksmanship maneuvers

2:33
Ben Clemens: And who knows if the players are going to say no right away, debate it until they have no other choices, or get some other concessions somehow

2:33
Lorenzo: Can you explain why the owners couldn’t counter with a 65 game proposal? Spite?  It seems that there is so much animosity now between players and owners that neither side will ever agree on anything.

2:33
Ben Clemens: I think it was just brinksmanship. They’re saying no hoping the players will cave now that they’re really close on details.

2:33
Ben Clemens: It’s no longer the case, as it was weeks ago, that the two sides are so far apart that there’s no point in making little moves.

2:34
Ben Clemens: Now we seem to be at a place where making a small concession might change the outcome.

2:34
Ben Clemens: For example, let’s say you’re bidding on a $1000 baseball card

2:34
Ben Clemens: Raising your bid from $550 to $600 is easy

2:35
Ben Clemens: The seller lowering their ask from $2000 to $1500 is easy

2:35
Ben Clemens: But when you’re offering $980

2:35
Ben Clemens: (and let’s say that a 65-game season is kind of near $1000 in this example)

2:35
Ben Clemens: It might behoove you to just say, you know what, we’re sticking at $980

2:35
Ben Clemens: If you think the seller might compromise

2:35
Ben Clemens: Saves you 20 bucks!

2:35
Chris: Why do national writers write such ridiculous things about collective bargaining? It’s like they haven’t been paying attention to the last 150 years of baseball…

2:35
Ben Clemens: Yeah uh

2:36
Ben Clemens: I want to be clear when I say that I think it’s very difficult to balance the competing asks that you have as a national-level reporter

2:37
Ben Clemens: You have a lot of sources to protect, and in general both sides accept that you’re going to do a lot of reporting things that are leaked to you

2:37
Ben Clemens: No players are done with Ken Rosenthal b/c he reported that the league thinks the players are intransigent

2:37
Ben Clemens: That’s his job

2:38
Ben Clemens: But I do find that some people, whose names I’ll leave out of it but whose names lightly scrambled are Bbo Ngaleighten, are just not even trying.

2:38
Blue: Stub hub won’t refund ticket prices for cancelled games. Ticket master won’t refund either. My mlb tv subscription is worth less than half now with no adjustment in sight. The out of town paper I look at for Indians coverage just put up a pay wall. I can’t watch games on tv for free anymore. And going to a game fro North Carolina to Baltimore is a several hundred dollar proposition. Baseball is not fan friendly. I am no longer a baseball friendly fan

2:38
Ben Clemens: This is likely cold comfort, but MLB.tv is offering full refunds.

2:38
Ben Clemens: If you email them about it they are processing them essentially instantly

2:38
Ben Clemens: And they may even have a form that does it

2:39
Ben Clemens: I haven’t canceled mine b/c I use it to make a lot of gifs and I think that merits my money, but yeah

2:39
Ben Clemens: The stubhub and ticketmaster things are ridiculous

2:39
Ben Clemens: I don’t know how they can even do that, to be honest

2:39
Ben Clemens: As a journalist myself, I’m honestly not too broken up that a newspaper had to put up a paywall; that is the kind of thing that happens sometimes!

2:40
Ben Clemens: But the rest, ugh

2:40
Ben Clemens: That said, the Charlotte minor league stadium is sweet

2:40
Ben Clemens: I grew up in East Tennessee and watched all the minor league baseball I could handle for cheap

2:40
Ben Clemens: So there are options. But yeah, it’s bad!

2:41
Trent Hauser: Once the owners allow baseball again, can FanGraphs go ham on stadium funding?

2:41
Trent Hauser: What is it about stadium funding that mainstream media ignores it completely?

2:41
Ben Clemens: I own a copy of The Stadium Game, which I highly recommend

2:41
Ben Clemens: I don’t know why it’s only intermittently covered. Sometimes people are all over it, but certainly nowhere near always.

2:41
Ben Clemens: Some of it is that stadium funding is, by its very nature, intermittent.

2:42
Ben Clemens: It’s not an acute crisis like if a sewer line in town breaks

2:42
Ben Clemens: But yes, I’d love to see more written about it.

2:42
@RationalMLBfan: Do you have a preference for physical board games or online board games? And are there any physical board games that translate particularly well to an online format?

2:42
Ben Clemens: Oh my goodness physical by far

2:43
Ben Clemens: My favorite thing about board games is strategizing and the feeling of having made a good plan

2:43
Ben Clemens: Whether it works or not

2:43
Ben Clemens: But my second favorite thing is often the components

2:43
Ben Clemens: My wife and I took a weekend trip to a house out in the country and brought a game we Kickstarted called Vindication

2:44
Ben Clemens: And the game is pretty fun, area control kinda deal I suppose and plays quickly, but the highlight is that the game just feels luxurious.

2:44
Ben Clemens: The pieces are cool, there are some metal tokens for important indicators, the cardstock is glossy

2:44
Ben Clemens: It’s just great

2:44
Ben Clemens: and really well illustrated

2:44
Ben Clemens: I’m a sucker for stuff like that

2:44
Ben Clemens: As for games that play well online, I actually think Seven Wonders translates well online because tooltips make that game flow much better

2:45
Ben Clemens: It’s otherwise somewhat complex — there are just a lot of options every turn — but seeing them written out is nice.

2:45
Ben Clemens: Shout out to Six Nimmt, which is a fun game you can play on boardgamearena that plays well in person but a lot better when the computer automates card placement

2:45
Ben Clemens: In the game you place cards based on a rule, but you have to apply that rule every time and it’s a bit tedious

2:45
Ben Clemens: Online it’s just like, hey, done

2:46
Trent Hauser: Btw just to be clear I don’t consider FanGraphs mainstream yet I don’t think….I just think it’s nuts that we are talking billions in taxpayer dollars

2:46
Ben Clemens: Oh yeah, I think it’s fair to say we aren’t mainstream.

2:46
Ben Clemens: If we were, I wouldn’t feel a thrill when one of my stories is a link in an espn article, or whatever

2:46
Ben Clemens: I think that within the baseball community we are mainstream

2:46
Ben Clemens: If that makes sense

2:47
Ben Clemens: But definitely not to the world as a whole.

2:47
JD: Does Marcus Simien take a one year prove it deal since he really only had one breakout year before this season?

2:47
Ben Clemens: I’ve been wondering about this general type of question a lot recently

2:47
Ben Clemens: Semien is an interesting case, no doubt

2:47
Ben Clemens: But just generally what will happen to people who are chewing up service time but who are cyphers

2:48
Ben Clemens: The nature of baseball’s team control structure means you rarely get players who reach free agency as complete blank slates

2:48
Ben Clemens: But a year of service time with no or few games is going to make evaluation much trickier

2:48
Ben Clemens: I think there are two options with Semien. One is yeah, he takes a Donaldson style pillow contract

2:50
Ben Clemens: The second is that some team thinks that they’d prefer to offer him, say, 5/18

2:50
Ben Clemens: or 5/90, you know what I mean

2:51
Ben Clemens: Because they have seen enough in the data

2:51
Ben Clemens: And don’t want him for one year, expecting him to be good and go get more

2:51
Ben Clemens: Like if Semien is close to his 2019 form he gets way more than that

2:51
Ben Clemens: But if you’re Semien, would you take that deal? Maybe

2:52
Ben Clemens: So this offseason will be a very interestin time for teams willing to gamble on their evaluations of players who are a touch data-light

2:52
Municipal Baseball Enthusiast: Is it true that the difference in salaries between NPB, KBO and MLB is due to the fact that we publicly finance stadiums?

2:52
Ben Clemens: Mm, the math doesn’ really add up

2:52
Ben Clemens: Though it certainly helps

2:53
Ben Clemens: For one thing, the KBO is much smaller, and they don’t have similar overall revenues at all.

2:55
Ben Clemens: NPB drew less than 50% of the live fans that MLB did last year, and ticket prices are lower (from my experience going to exactly one game there, to be fair)

2:55
Ben Clemens: And while I can’t find exact data on it, it’s reasonable to assume the TV contract situation is much less lucrative for the teams.

2:56
Ben Clemens: The stadiums help, but MLB generates an absolute ton of revenue. Let’s say you lop off 500 million dollars from every team once every 30 years, that’s 500 million dollars a year that teams would have to procure themselves

2:56
Ben Clemens: (and that’s a bad assumption, some stadiums are privately financed and some teams don’t change stadiums that frequently)

2:57
Ben Clemens: So take that 500 million directly out of player salary, mlb would still hvae a big edge

2:57
Kawasaki Home Run: Where would be your preferred MLB bubble locations, if we went down that road (similar to NBA and NHL)? Phoenix and Florida don’t look too good right now based on infection rates. Same for Cali and WA. Texas was mentioned as a third bubble in previous discussions. Where else has the hotel and field capacity and the low infection rates to try the regular season? IL? NY? MO?

2:57
Ben Clemens: Cali actually seems okay to me, depending on the exact structure. It’s such a big state that there are several locations where COVID is not out of control

2:58
Ben Clemens: Additionally, the positive test rate here hasn’t spiked the way it has in AZ and FL, which gives me some confidence that there’s not another flare-up waiting to happen

2:58
Ben Clemens: I don’ think IL and NY make too much sense, because to get access to the facilities you’d want you would need to go to the big cities

2:58
Ben Clemens: There aren’t 15 major league fields in Buffalo just hanging around or anything

2:59
Ben Clemens: I just don’t think a bubble is logistically workable at this late hour.

2:59
Ben Clemens: I’m honestly a little skeptical of bubbles overall, too

2:59
Ben Clemens: Too many places where the concept can fail

2:59
Ben Clemens: But yeah, if I had to pick a place, I’d lean California at this point to be honest

3:00
Ben Clemens: And I might be willing to consider Florida if someone has an idea for how to deal with the rain

3:00
Ben Clemens: But in an NBA style deal

3:00
Ben Clemens: Not in a city, in a place where you can completely restrict access

3:00
Ben Clemens: That makes the infection rate in the general population a little less worrisome

3:01
Ben Clemens: But yeah…. I don’t see it happening evither way.

3:01
Trivia Question Guy: Since 1970, three players (hitters) have won an MVP award while hitting 10 HR or less.  Name them.

3:01
Ben Clemens: Hm.

3:01
Ben Clemens: Wow I am not good at this style of trivia.

3:02
Ben Clemens: Any chat guesses, fire them in. I’m goin to think about it for a few minutes before answering.

3:02
bohknowsbmore: Couldn’t the players have a massive interest in California vs. Florida bubble locations given the state income tax chasm between the two?

3:02
Ben Clemens: Yeah, this is a really good point!

3:02
Ben Clemens: I hadn’t thought about that

3:02
Ben Clemens: Yup, Cali is probably out for that reason

3:03
Ben Clemens: They’d need to negotiate some kind of carve-out with the state and lol, not happening.

3:03
Kiermaier’s Piercing Green Eyes: Your little “Bbo Ngaleighten” word scramble cheap shot is disgraceful. I will not stand by while you besmirch the good name of renowned baseball writer H. Negotiable. The Negotiable family is practically royalty around here, and their philanthropic efforts helped put me through college. I will be writing a letter to Ms. Rowley of FanGraphs dot com.

3:03
Kiermaier’s Piercing Green Eyes: DAMMIT that should have been H.B. Negotiable.

3:03
Ben Clemens: I’ve got your back

3:03
Ben Clemens: Excellent anagramming

3:03
Ben Clemens: I’ve been found out!

3:04
Ben Clemens: Sorry Herbert Bertrand Negotiable

3:04
Ben Clemens: I take it back

3:04
Ben Clemens: presumably that’s his name

3:04
MSW: Is there a way to legally watch NPB games in the states? Or just the KBO?

3:04
Ben Clemens: I am not aware of one. That doesn’t mean there isn’t one.

3:04
Ben Clemens: But yeah, KBO is easy and NPB hard

3:05
Billy G: Is there a part of baseball that you’d like to research more?

3:05
Ben Clemens: So much stuff

3:05
Ben Clemens: So much stuff

3:05
Ben Clemens: I’d like to do a lot more work on the game theoretical puzzle going on between pitches and hitters between eveyr pitch

3:06
Ben Clemens: I’d like to learn much more about how we can translate individual talent levels into expected team winning percentage

3:06
Ben Clemens: Like we’ve gotten 80% of the way there, let’s say, in some really intuitive ways

3:06
Ben Clemens: And I’d love to know how much of that last 20% I can untangle in less intuitive, or even potentially ridiculous ways

3:07
Ben Clemens: I have a long-running project that I’ve never been able to crack where I try to isolate the effect of a batter seeing the same pitch twice

3:07
Ben Clemens: I’d like to know how much of the DH penalty can be explained by players recovering from injury

3:07
Ben Clemens: It’s weird… during the season I feel like there’s an infinite amount of stuff to write about, and topics smack me in the face essentially

3:08
Ben Clemens: When there’s no season, it’s hard to fill out enough volume of articles, so you’re constantly pressing for ideas and end up drained

3:08
Ben Clemens: That was not a great explanation of it, I’m sure, but there are plenty of topics I’d love to research and I feel like not having a season isn’t helping me with that as much as it is pushing them off into the future.

3:08
MSW: The answer to the MLB bubble is to play the games in an actual bubble. Toronto Skydome only!

3:09
Ben Clemens: I mean, some players might feel safer in Canada than the US at the moment!

3:09
Ben Clemens: But haha Toronto is a pretty big city, and by September/October I imagine people will be spending a lot of time inside there

3:09
Michael: When looking at which teams may not want a season, shouldnt we include a look at vesting options that won’t vest (eg yankees with ja happ)?  Seems like those numbers may be a negative influence on playing.

3:09
Ben Clemens: Yeah sure

3:10
Ben Clemens: It’s not a huge effect, but it is one

3:10
Ben Clemens: That said, there are countervailing things here too we aren’t counting.

3:10
Ben Clemens: The Dodgers are just going to get a whopping zero Mookie games if there’s no season

3:11
Ben Clemens: Etc

3:11
ballsandgutters: Why aren’t more baseball media mentioning the Black Players roundtable that MLB hosted last week with Harold Reynolds, Josh Bell,  Jackie Robinson’s daughter and a couple other young players?     Best thing baseball has done in years.

3:11
Ben Clemens: It was indeed excellent

3:11
Ben Clemens: I also really enjoyed the one the Athletic held

3:12
Ben Clemens: I don’t have a good answer for you for why this wasn’t talked about more. For all the things I think the league does that are gross and coldly calculated to get the most money for the least outlay

3:13
Ben Clemens: I truly enjoyed that discussion and I’m glad they did it

3:13
Ben Clemens: Baseball has a shameful history with racism (most sports do!), and I find the ‘wrap yourself in a Jackie Robinson banner’ stuff pretty obnoxious, but less propaganda and more letting people share their experiences is a great way to handle things I think

3:14
Trivia Answer Guy: Pete Rose (1973)  Willie McGee (1985),  Ichiro Suzuki (2001)

3:14
Ben Clemens: Well, I got two of them right

3:14
Ben Clemens: I had no clue Willie McGee had so few dingers when he won MVP, though I know he won MVP b/c my dad wouldn’t stop telling me about it when I was a kid

3:15
Ben Clemens: I wasn’t sure if Rose won an MVP, but I thought he was the type of player who might, so I guessed him. And then I knew Ichiro

3:15
Laffey Tuffy: Any thoughts on the KBO signings of Addison Russell and Brandon Barnes?

3:16
Ben Clemens: Gonna be totally honest with you, I don’t know much about Brandon Barnes. I’m not sure whether we’re going to write something about Russell or not. I’m not a huge fan of the signing unless Russell is sincerely a changed man, or at the very least has convinced the team that he is.

3:17
Ben Clemens: I also know that I’m predisposed to give MLB teams zero credit for thoughtfulness and morality

3:17
Ben Clemens: And I’m not sure where to put KBO teams on that axis

3:17
Ben Clemens: I just have a lot less experience with the league

3:17
Ben Clemens: But if some MLB team did this I’d be just a harrrrrd no

3:18
Ben Clemens: The Heroes doing it? I’m skeptical but I have a lot less history of chicanery to let me know that boy these teams really don’t care about anything but extracting surplus value

3:18
Jamie: Not sure who’s be the best to ask this to, maybe you know, but why can’t these billionaire owners figure out a way to make additional money with no fans? Like sell VR seating for $50 a game or something? Everyone gets a front row seat! Is it against the tv deals they’ve signed?

3:19
Ben Clemens: Oh, there’s every chance that they could. I don’t know if your exact idea would work — aside from potential issues with TV deals, TV exists, you know?

3:19
Ben Clemens: But the owners are going to do SOMETHING to extract whatever money they can

3:20
Ben Clemens: Try to get partial capacity opened as soon as possible, or something; I’m not sure what the exact details will be but they will flood the zone with monetization ideas

3:21
Ben Clemens: They just can’t talk about any of them until they’ve locked the players into a deal

3:21
Ben Clemens: If you mention a monetization idea now, that’s extra revenue to bargain with.

3:21
Ben Clemens: I am certain that teams are discussing this stuff internally

3:21
Janus: The A’s had to be convinced to pay minor league stipends after May and now they might drop $85 million to buy the other half of the Coliseum. Does that look as bad as it looks?

3:21
Ben Clemens: I mean, it’s not great!

3:22
Ben Clemens: I don’t really have much more than that to say

3:22
Ben Clemens: It’s bad, it looks and is bad

3:23
Ben Clemens: No one is surprised that the A’s are quick to declare poverty and also quick to have whatever money they need if they think they’re profiting off of a deal

3:23
Trent Hauser: What are the chances teams are selling the biometric data they collect from players?

3:23
Ben Clemens: I would imagine that the odds are quite low

3:23
Ben Clemens: Teams think they’re getting a ton of value out of proprietary access to that information

3:23
Ben Clemens: The yield on selling it would need to be extremely high, I think.

3:24
Ben Clemens: I guess I don’t know that for certain, but it seems like a combination of ethically dubious, a PR nightmare if it gets out, questionably useful even if it succeeds, and low-yield

3:25
Ben Clemens: Now maybe I just massively underestimate the going rate for biometric data and it makes sense

3:25
Ben Clemens: But I’m skeptical

3:25
Isolated Thinker: Way for MLB to generate future revenue when safe:  During the offseason, have a short Old-Timers season with retired players in either FL or AZ.

3:25
Ben Clemens: I mean, I’d watch that… gonna be a while before we talk about getting a bunch of old people together for a party again, though

3:25
Michael: But that cost has been paid regardless of whether there are 2020 games or not.  Economic impact would be ignore, no?

3:25
Ben Clemens: I assume this is about Mookie

3:26
Ben Clemens: In response to my last answer.

3:26
Ben Clemens: And I mean, not really

3:26
Ben Clemens: If you have a player with surplus value

3:26
Ben Clemens: Heck, what about a year at minimum salary for a star

3:26
Ben Clemens: Jack Flaherty, say, but also Mookie

3:26
Ben Clemens: Advancing the service time clock by a year without getting any value out of them stings

3:27
Bart: Players vote has been pushed back to 5 PM.   Looks like a last ditch effort to avoid he Commish setting a 50 game season.

3:28
Ben Clemens: I’ll be really curious to see the outcome. I’m slightly more optimistic about baseball happening this year now that the two sides are so close

3:28
Ben Clemens: Like I actually think the players might just vote yes?

3:28
Ben Clemens: I tihnk they probably shouldn’t, but I could see it happening

3:28
Ben Clemens: It’s kinda close honestly

3:28
Ben Clemens: But the league had a clever little week of negotiating to make it look less obvious that they were negotiating in bad faith

3:29
Ben Clemens: Now all the previous nonsense they said about last and best offer

3:29
Ben Clemens: When they subsequently improved by hundreds of millions of dollars

3:29
Ben Clemens: Sure does look preposterous and bad-faith-y

3:29
Ben Clemens: But now it’s at least close

3:29
Dave: Is the deadline for signing UDFAs the same as signing drafted players (August 1st)?

3:29
Ben Clemens: I am not sure

3:29
Ben Clemens: Might be a question for Eric

3:30
Frank: You say “I mean” way too much.  And I mean, it’s not even necessary in the course of the conversation.

3:30
Ben Clemens: Oh that sounds entirely possible and now I’m going to read up and see it a lot

3:30
Ben Clemens: I used to be a ‘like’ person though I’ve largely kicked that habit

3:30
Ben Clemens: And a ‘fair enough’ person too

3:31
Ben Clemens: If Meg is reading this, I’m truly sorry for all the word repetition you have to edit out of my articles

3:31
Ben Clemens: I mean is just a filler word, and I am surprised I use it so much in writing, but I’m not at all surprised that I use filler words a lot

3:31
ghost of bruce bochte: I’d like a couple of Congressfolks to start publicly talking about the anti-trust exemption and see if that changes things…

3:32
Ben Clemens: I think Congress has bigger fish to fry at the moment.

3:32
Ben Clemens: Ideally yes, I’d like this too, but there are a ton of things I’d like to see fixed before we get down the chain to changing the anti-trust exemption for baseball

3:32
Ben Clemens: That’s not so say I don’ think it’s worth bluffing about

3:32
Ben Clemens: Mention that you’re considering a bill about it or some hearings, etc.

3:33
Ben Clemens: But that’s 100% not 2020 business

3:33
Ben Clemens: And probably not 2021 business given that if Democrats win they’ll have a lot of cleaning up to do in 2021 and if Trump wins he’ll have a lot of scores to settle

3:34
Ben Clemens: I do wish that Congress would do *something* instead of voting on bills to suppress minor league salaries but hey

3:34
Ben Clemens: Betting on Congress doing the wrong thing has not been a *terrible* bet the past few years

3:34
Ben Clemens: So I’m going to keep assuming they will do the wrong thing, and hope I’m wrong

3:35
BK: Have you ever played Strat-O-Matic baseball? My friends and I are drafting with the Hall of Fame deck and the question at #1 is take the two-way Babe Ruth or the stud at a weak position in Josh Gibson. Your thoughts?

3:35
Ben Clemens: I love Strat-O-Matic, and my dad and I used to do similar drafts

3:35
Ben Clemens: I haven’t drafted the HoF collection before, and I don’t remember how two-way players work in the game

3:36
Ben Clemens: How many players is the draft?

3:37
BK: 8 teams, 22 players per team

3:37
BK: Our league is allowing you to own both Babe Ruth cards if you draft Babe Ruth

3:37
Ben Clemens: There are presumably at least 3 or 4 catchers worth rostering

3:37
Ben Clemens: And I don’t know what the dropoff from Gibson to, say, peak Bench/Berra/Piazza or whatever is

3:38
Ben Clemens: I’d probably lean Babe Ruth

3:38
Ben Clemens: But without having seen the set it sounds like both options are really good

3:38
Ben Clemens: Getting an extra pitcher just seems quite valuable

3:38
Ben Clemens: Assuming Ruth’s pitcher card is a mid-rotation starter or decent bullpen arm

3:39
Ben Clemens: Like if you get a 10th round pick out of the back end of his card, and then also the best offensive player with the first overall pick, that’s pretty nice

3:39
Ben Clemens: OOTP has given me newfound respect for two-way players in baseball sims

3:40
Ben Clemens: They have capped tournaments there, which aren’t quite like drafts but are a similar thing — you have a constraint to operate under

3:40
Ben Clemens: And finding extra space on your team through a single player that can perform a few roles is big

3:40
BK: Yeah, I think Ruth’s pitching card is even better than that, to be honest. I think I’d agree with you and lean Ruth

3:40
Ben Clemens: Ah yeah if he’s a top-10-round pick I’d just snap that up

3:40
Ben Clemens: (he = the pitcher card by itself here)

3:41
Ben Clemens: One thing that’s a little weird about Strat-o-Matic, if it still works the way it did when I plyaed, is that the pitcher/batter interaction isn’t really a proportional thing

3:41
Ben Clemens: You just roll a die and end up either on the pitcher’s card or the hitter’s card

3:42
Ben Clemens: So some of the concerns I’d normally have (is it useful to have power hitters against a group of pitchers who presumably massively suppress homers)

3:42
Ben Clemens: Don’ really apply

3:42
Ben Clemens: THis whole thing sounds incredibly fun though

3:42
BK: Very helpful, thanks! In doing my research about this deck, I’ve realized that I don’t even know who more than 50% of these people are!

3:42
Ben Clemens: Isn’t it great??

3:43
Ben Clemens: Every week I learn something new about baseball via opening OOTP packs, and this sounds really similar

3:43
Ben Clemens: Yesterday my wife opened up a card of a guy named Creepy Crespi

3:43
Ben Clemens: Just lol

3:44
BK: Yeah, for example these pitchers in the late 1800s NEVER gave up homers because homers just weren’t a thing. So their cards are amazingggg

3:44
Ben Clemens: Yeah. I guess for that reason you don’t want to have an interactive model… like if a guy has a 0% home run rate, it doesn’t matter whether he’s facing Babe Ruth or Ichiro

3:44
Keith: Nick Martini will be inducted to the HoF on the first or second ballot?

3:44
Ben Clemens: Third ballot, due to whispers of PED use

3:44
Ben Clemens: never substantiated, though

3:45
Ben Clemens: With that, friends, I’m going to call it a day.

3:45
Ben Clemens: I mean, I suppose it’s called a day

3:45
Ben Clemens: But I’m going to end the chat

3:45
Ben Clemens: Have a wonderful rest of your day, and I mean, if you get the chance, come catch me on FanGraphs Live tomorrow

3:45
Ben Clemens: Be safe, everyone!





Ben is a contributor to FanGraphs. A lifelong Cardinals fan, he got his start writing for Viva El Birdos. He can be found on Twitter @_Ben_Clemens.

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Pirates Hurdles

A retired players league in Florida was already tried around 1990. It didnt draw enough interest to stick even with some fairly big names.