Dan Szymborski FanGraphs Chat – 12/21/23

12:01
Avatar Dan Szymborski: IT’S A CHAT!

12:03
Champdo: So how many bats do you think Colt Keith gets for the Tigers next season?

12:03
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’m with Jason here, I think 300-400 PA is reasonable. Unless he flops, I think the Tigers will figure out how to play them, even if the position right now is uncertain

12:04
Houzer: Could Willy Adames be an option for the Tigers at 3B in a trade? Maybe like a Sawyer Gipson-Long for Adames deal?

12:05
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Adames would be fun. I don’t think Gipson-Long by himself gets it done th ough.

12:05
Avatar Dan Szymborski: And it may be dependent on where the Brewers are.

12:06
Dan Sanchez: The Orioles seem to match up well with the Mariners on a bats-for-arms trade. Assuming Kirby and even Gilbert are off the table, what would it take to get one of Bryce Miller or Bryan Woo? Westburg straight up? Mountcastle or Hays plus Joey Ortiz?

12:06
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’ve heard crazier ideas.

12:06
Houzer: If Colt Keith becomes the Tigers 2B, does that make Jace Jung a tradable asset? Its tough to see him sticking at 3B, and Keith seems to be the better prospect

12:07
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It’s possible, but the Tigers have enough holes that one prospect succeeding doesn’t doom another

12:07
Paul: Hi Dan, the rumored contracts for Yamamoto are nuts to me, it seems like the numbers just keep going up.  I know it will be written about when he signs, but what kind of production does ZiPS think Yamamoto will be good for over the next 10 years?  The numbers being floated are what you would pay a guy you expect to put up ~30 WAR for you.

12:07
Avatar Dan Szymborski: ZiPS thinks he’s really good, but hearing people talking about 300 million would make me a bit uneasy

12:08
Avatar Dan Szymborski: There *is* some uncertainty here.

12:08
Doug: How concerned do you think people should be about Yamamoto’s height?

12:08
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Some, but not TOO much

12:08
laxtonto: Merry Christmas Dan!

12:09
Joe Don: If you owned the Rangers, what moves would you allow and/or urge your GM to make this off-season

12:09
Avatar Dan Szymborski: You too!

12:09
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Assuming it’s not just “sign Ohtani,” I think Jorge Soler just plugged in as DH would be fun. And I think Imanaga’s become underrated

12:09
Marshall: Hey Dan!! We are starting to hear whispers about the CBA ending in 2026…do you think we are headed for another lockout? Missed games in 2027?

12:10
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It’s certainly a possibility. The CBA didn’t really fix many longstanding disputes

12:11
Todd Bonzalez: When will ZiPSE-Mini finally be incorporated into this website? I can’t wait to ask an excel spreadsheet all of my baseball-related questions!

12:11
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I am very confused.

12:11
Dr. Shrimp Puerto Rico: Would you give Bellinger 6/150?

12:11
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Only in *very* specific circumstances, because from a generic standpoint, I don’t think that’s a good deal.

12:12
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I have to be a fringe playoff contender *right now*. CF has to be an absolute *need*. And I have to have an owner that’s not going to turn off the spigot after spending $25 million

12:12
striker: Cease for Ortiz, Norby, Beavers, Povich and Armbruester. Who says no?

12:12
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’d certainly do that if I’m the White Sox

12:13
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I think the O’s might actually blanch at that however

12:13
J Peterman: What are the chances that Jordan Walker turns himself into a capable OFer in the next year or two?

12:13
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I dunno, 30%?

12:13
Avatar Dan Szymborski: He’s still new to the position

12:13
Avatar Dan Szymborski: But he was just SO awful

12:14
Mike Z: Fantasy baseball Q…. I have the third pick in the upcoming draft, do I take Aaron Judge or Juan Soto?

12:14
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Neither?

12:15
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Two off Acuña, J-Rod, Carroll, Betts, Witt are likely off the board

12:15
Avatar Dan Szymborski: take one of the remaining three

12:15
laxtonto: What is the worst “prospect” in all of baseball according to ZIPs last year?

12:15
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Hard to say because the worst prospect in baseball is probably someone at a very low level I did not give a projection to

12:17
Avatar Dan Szymborski: But of players actually *considered* prospects, the biggest difference between perception of a prospect and the ZiPS projection would have been Alex Ramirez

12:18
Guest: Dan, appreciate all your work on ZiPS as usual. Did any projections for Cleveland prospects raise your eyebrows at all? DeLauter projected for a 95 OPS+ stood out to me

12:18
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I mean, he was a college guy so he SHOULD advance very quickly if he’s going to become something

12:19
Ben: What contract would ZiPS recommend for Yamamoto? And do teams consider the posting fee part of the contract (i.e., something Yamamoto must essentially pay for), or do they know they need to pay full value plus just bite the bullet and bear the responsibility of the (hefty) additional fee all by themselves?

12:21
Greg: I was slightly surprised how much ZiPS likes Bieber this year.  Reds have been linked to him before, you think he would be the impact acquisition in their rotation they should be looking for?

12:21
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Hang on in the last one

12:21
Avatar Dan Szymborski: As for Bieber, he would be a fun acquisition

12:21
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Though it doesn’t feel like the Reds would be highly interested in a rental

12:22
Grayson: Is ZiPs bullish on any of the Rox close-to-MLB prospects (Amador/Beck/Thompson/Fernandez)?

12:23
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Cheating to try to find out ahead of time!

12:23
Pepiotti pizza: Do you think R Pepiot is going to be the next big thing in the Rays rotation?

12:23
Avatar Dan Szymborski: ZiPS doesn’t think so and I’m only a little more optimistic, but it IS the Rays

12:23
Harris: I looked for you at the winter meetings but couldn’t find you 💔

12:23
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I was around!

12:23
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I probably only spent about a half-hour in the area you needed your credential for

12:24
Avatar Dan Szymborski: The FG crew spent a lot of time hanging out in that shop area of the hotel with the water and near the gingerbread design place

12:25
Guest: Does ZiPS agree: snakes alive?

12:25
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I mean, some snakes are

12:25
Guest: How do the cats react when you are trying to get them off the keyboard to do a chat?

12:25
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It’s mostly Justinian and he gives me squeaky meows

12:25
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It’s more annoying when I’m on the radio

12:26
Jon: Who is it that leaks trades? Is it some random intern that overhears something and texts a reporter?

12:26
Avatar Dan Szymborski: There are a whole lot of pathways

12:26
Merry holidays: Nice piece on the Guardians today, with encouraging projections. Computer aside, what thinks you of the low cost fruitcake of a roster they’ve assembled?

12:27
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I don’t know if I’m *quite* as bullish as ZiPS, but it is a pretty good roster. Cleveland did really well in the ZiPS top prospects the last few years, so I guess it’s not super surprising

12:27
Sloth: This probably has been asked in one of your chats before, but not in one I’ve seen. Are you related to the poet Wisława Szymborska?

12:27
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Extremely distantly

12:27
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I don’t have it in front of me as it would be a weird thing to keep at my PC, but I’ve got my whole family tree going back a long way

12:29
Avatar Dan Szymborski: the closest well-known person I’m related to is Malamud, who was my grandfather’s second cousin

12:30
Avatar Dan Szymborski: and I’m related to Maximilian von Szymborski (Johann Nepomuk Maximilian von Szymborski), who was rumored to be having an affair with Prince Albert’s father.

12:30
Avatar Dan Szymborski: “However, another suggestion, made in a 1937 article on the heredity of the royal caste, contended that Szymborski himself had been Luise’s lover and the father of her son Albert!”

12:32
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Unlikely of course

12:32
Ryan: I know that making fun of HoF ballots isn’t a thing we really do, but Bill Ballou just cast an only ARod and Manny ballot, and I think we need to appreciate this contribution to The Discourse

12:32
Avatar Dan Szymborski: There wa sa pretty bad three person ballot

12:32
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’m trying to reduce my HoF meltdowns

12:32
laxtonto: Is there a noticeable difference in the number of Rangers questions now that they won the WS?

12:32
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Don’t THINK so

12:32
Guest: Is someone who hits their 95th percentile outcome in 2023 less likely to hit their 95th percentile outcome in 2024?

12:32
Avatar Dan Szymborski: no

12:33
Avatar Dan Szymborski: One way in that ZIPS is well calibrated is that any kind of over/under performance, whether team or player, isn’t predictive of future over/under performance

12:33
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Though that’s a mixed blessing

12:33
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Because if it WERE a thing, then it means there’s still some low hanging fruit left

12:33
SalisburySteak: You wrote in the projection that KC needs to completely change the way they are run. Does the unexpected FA spree count?

12:33
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’m not sure really

12:34
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Because here’s the thing: I push *competitive* teams to spend aggressively.

12:34
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I don’t have the same objections to tanking as some other writers do. Those are the incentives built into the system.

12:34
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Like I don’t mind a crappy small market team spending $60 million in a year in which they’re bad. But that’s only IF they’re going to go over the top and spend a *lot* when the team actually is good

12:35
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Like that Pirates run in the 2010s, I had no quibbles when they sucked and were cheap

12:35
Avatar Dan Szymborski: problem is that when they WERE good, the payroll didn’t go over the top

12:36
Unabashed fantasy question: Still a big Matt McLain fan? Not worried about the strikeouts and the chase rate?

12:36
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I am, and not really

12:36
Guest: Faulkner is a better comp for Joyce than Nabokov. Zips got that one wrong by a mo;e.

12:37
MEGALODON: Spencer Strider said that he doesn’t respect anyone who likes the new Olivia Rodrigo album. Do you agree?

12:37
Avatar Dan Szymborski: OK, I am very confused

12:38
Guest: Do you think Baily’s bat will come around, or will he remain a light hitter in the bigs?

12:38
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I think he’ll always be a defense first guy

12:38
Willie: You see nick martinez as a starter or reliever for the reds?

12:38
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I think they’ll be flexible with his role

12:38
Jon: I’d certainly do that if I were the White Sox

12:38
Jon: Dan, I comment on this grammar because I care.

12:38
KC Pain: Any shot the Royals arent last place in division?  I swear the division is weaker but we are only mildly improved

12:38
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I think the Royals are better than the White Sox

12:39
Harris: I had the hardest time finding anyone at the winter meetings. I didn’t see anyone post where they were or what times to say hi.

12:39
Harris: Even driving up to Opryland there was not a single sign saying that the winter meetings were being held

12:39
Avatar Dan Szymborski: You know, people can just tweet at me and I’ll respond!

12:39
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I met several bloggers that way there

12:40
MilwaukeeBeerJays: I just bought ffxv but haven’t had a chance to play it yet. Have you got into your car and played it?

12:40
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I have played it, though it’s probably one of my least favorite FF games

12:40
Jim: does Joey Estes make the A’s rotation out of Spring?

12:40
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’d be very surprised

12:41
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Oh, ZiPS would offer 9/252 for Yamamoto

12:41
Jimbotron: Do you think some people believe that Zips is really just your alter ego and all these projections are just pulls from a hat? And if so, how many nightmares have you had about being a projection system?

12:41
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Some people obviously think that

12:42
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’m always amused when they talk about respect/disrespect in a projection. Like, that’s not how it works

12:42
Mark: I’ve recently been enjoying reading historical baseball analysis writings (The Hidden Game, early internet articles, etc.). Wanted to ask if you have any personal recommendations in that realm of literature.

12:42
Avatar Dan Szymborski: You probably SHOULD read all the Abstracts.

12:42
Avatar Dan Szymborski: they’re foundational! even if bill didn’t get everything right in the end

12:42
MilwaukeeBeerJays: This came up at lunch the other day: shredded cheddar or a slice of American cheese on top of a hot dog?

12:42
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Neither! I don’t do cheese on dogs

12:42
Avatar Dan Szymborski: give me onions/mustard/sauerkraut

12:43
Avatar Dan Szymborski: OR non Cincinnati chili

12:43
Harris: I did tweet at you 👀

12:43
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Didn’t I tweet back? It’s unusual when I miss one

12:43
HaveGloveWillTravel: Surprised Montgomery’s market hasn’t developed faster. Is he just every team’s fallback if they don’t land Yamamoto at this point, or are teams leery of the contract he’s reportedly seeking?

12:43
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I think he’s waiting out Yamamoto to a degree

12:43
Bendix: Who would say no to a Eury Perez for Jackson Holliday trade?

12:44
Avatar Dan Szymborski: That would be ballsy fun. But I think both teams would err on the side of sticking with who they have

12:44
Jon: I would have to be a playoff contender right now. Grammar matters

12:44
Jon: I would have to have an owner

12:44
Avatar Dan Szymborski: heh

12:44
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’m trying to type these quickly so I can answer as many as possible because I have to go at 1!

12:44
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Most times I’m writing it’s not a race. This is a race!

12:45
Sir Nerdlington: Are we finally starting to see that the $/War is more asymptotic than linear as the player becomes more elite?

12:45
Avatar Dan Szymborski: ZiPS has moved to a stepwise function

12:45
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It’s kinda weird, it wouldn’t a simple curve either

12:45
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Because there appears to be a ceiling where teams start to get uneasy

12:45
Avatar Dan Szymborski: like nobody has a $60 million salary

12:45
Dan: What’s for lunch today, sir?

12:46
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Nothing!

12:46
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’ve been doing alternate-day fasting since the end of the season

12:46
Avatar Dan Szymborski: between that and no beer, I’ve lost 27 pounds

12:46
Extra crispy bacon?: Who Is more toasted – L Lynn or T Story?

12:46
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Lynn I think

12:46
Jon: When a minor league player is traded mid season, it lists his orgs out of order on their player page. For example, see Logan O’Hoppe. Lists Angels, Phillies, then Angels again.

12:47
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’m not sure if they’re necessarily meant to be in order?

12:47
Avast ye: Am I crazy for liking the additions the Pirates have made to their rotation?

12:47
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Not CRAZY

12:47
Avatar Dan Szymborski: but I’m just not particularly a fan. Especially Gonzo

12:47
q: if they miss out on yamamoto, should the yankees pivot to signing another free agent starter to a multi-year deal? all of the others likely to get multi-year deals seem like big-time risks

12:47
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I think so. The need for an arm doesn’t evaporate

12:48
Guest: Vientos or Baty at 3rd for the Mets this year?

12:48
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Yes.

12:48
Scotty H: Do you or ZIPs like Chapman or Bellinger at 6/150 better?

12:48
Avatar Dan Szymborski: God

12:48
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’d like Bellinger better, that’s due to age

12:48
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Three years is pretty significant

12:49
Ben: Does ZiPS weight within the season at all? For example, if 2 players had the exact same overall stats and underlying stats for the full year last but one player was great in the 1st half and terrible in the 2nd half and the other was terrible the 1st half and great the 2nd half, would ZiPS view them differently with all else being equal?

12:49
Avatar Dan Szymborski: ZiPS doesn’t as I’ve found that so noisy that it lost its value

12:50
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It’s one of those things that there’s likely signal in there, but it’s simply overwhelmed by the noise

12:50
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It’s like bobbing for apples in a swimming pool

12:50
Skyline: Triston McKenzie’s projection looks solid-how worried are you about his ability to repeatedly hurl a baseball?

12:51
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Certainly at least mildly so

12:51
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Every time I see him, I just want to make him a sandwich

12:51
Mark: How do the logistics of guest speaking on the radio work? Do they send you a cold email? Do you get paid a flat fee for 30 minutes of conversation? Or is it voluntary and just something fun to do? Part of working at Fangraphs if someone wants to host a writer?

12:52
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I can’t go into all of it

12:53
Avatar Dan Szymborski: But generally speaking, people will ask me in an email or a Twitter DM if I’d like to come on

12:53
Avatar Dan Szymborski: FanGraphs doesn’t have official deals with anyone in that regard

12:53
Avatar Dan Szymborski: But I’ve been doing radio hits for 20 years and among baseball nerd circles, there’s some familiarity with me

12:53
Avatar Dan Szymborski: and I’m an easy guest to have on

12:54
Avatar Dan Szymborski: And I’ve done some weird things. I had a regular Friday appearance on Canada Laughs on SiriusXM for awhile before it transmuted into Canada Talks

12:54
Unabashed fantasy question: Interesting that you mention Cincinnati style chili. This is essentially the “meat sauce” on top of a Rochester “garbage plate.” Have you ever had one, and how much did you love it?

12:55
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I don’t do garbage plates.

12:55
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I don’t like food touching

12:55
Phil: Would signing both Imanaga and Montgomery be a better use of money than signing Yamamoto alone? I’m wondering if that’s what Craig Breslow is thinking, anyway.

12:55
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Personally, I would prefer the former at the same salary

12:56
Jon: Why would you not want it to be in chronological order?

12:56
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I didn’t express any feeling on the subject! I just don’t think it’s intended to be within the season

12:56
Chris: Congrats on 27lbs that’s not easy

12:56
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It helps to start as a fatass.

12:56
Avatar Dan Szymborski: My stretch goal is to get back to my pre college weight of 175

12:57
Sad Fan: Is all hope lost for the Mariners?

12:57
Avatar Dan Szymborski: No, but they’re going to run out of time to figure out that offense quickly

12:57
Unabashed fantasy question: Is alternate day fasting what it sounds like?

12:57
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Yes

12:57
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I like this one because you have reduced calories, but there’s less red tape involved.

12:57
Avatar Dan Szymborski: You don’t have to count anything

12:58
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I can just eat normally one day, which is easy to do. And eating nothing the other day is pretty easy to administer too.

12:58
Jim: How about alternate day FATTING?

12:58
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I think fatting is more efficient if you do it every day

12:58
MEGALODON: Strider went on Foolish’s channel to discuss albums of the year and took a shot at Rodrigo

12:59
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I have to admit to not knowing her music

12:59
Avatar Dan Szymborski: the last five or six years, I think I’ve finally aged out of new music

12:59
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Like I still buy a ton, but a lot of it is 90s/00s bands new releases

1:00
Chris: Can AI art make a piece contemplating the ethics of AI art?

1:00
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Maybe?

1:00
Avatar Dan Szymborski: But in the meantime, here’s Mt. Bartolo

1:00
Avatar Dan Szymborski:

1:00
Jon: Dan, if I’m coming off as pricky in my comments to you it’s just because I don’t know how to act in front of celebrities

1:00
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Calling me a celebrity is  HUGE stretch

1:01
Jon: What site do you use for AI art?

1:01
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Midjourney, though I do have stable diffusion

1:01
Avatar Dan Szymborski: On that note, I do have to head out as I have a busy afternoon

1:02
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Thanks for coming everyone! See you all in the new year





Dan Szymborski is a senior writer for FanGraphs and the developer of the ZiPS projection system. He was a writer for ESPN.com from 2010-2018, a regular guest on a number of radio shows and podcasts, and a voting BBWAA member. He also maintains a terrible Twitter account at @DSzymborski.

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dozingoffdadmember
4 months ago

If the Mt. Bartolo thing were presented to me without a caption I probably would have guessed it was Andre the Giant

maguromember
4 months ago
Reply to  dozingoffdad

I guessed Lionel Richie.