Dan Szymborski FanGraphs Chat – 4/22/21

12:01
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Greetings all!

12:01
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Sorry for the lost chat last week. I was getting COVID vaccine deux.

12:01
Avatar Dan Szymborski: And definitely felt awful afterwards!

12:01
ballsandgutters: Proud FG ad free member here….

So about 5 years ago you and I got in a Twitter fight about whether Carlos Beltran is HOF worthy.   I said no.      I think I’m gonna win on a technicality.     BTW – if you want to get me a beer ask Eno for a rec

12:02
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Thanks for the support! I’d grumble about you winning on a technicality but…

12:02
Avatar Dan Szymborski:

12:02
John: What do the Rockies know that the rest of us do not?

12:02
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Not much.

12:02
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’d say the passwords to their network

12:02
Avatar Dan Szymborski: but I’m guessing upper management has to call IT a lot about that

12:03
Avatar Dan Szymborski: assumign they haven’t sent IT out to be clubbies

12:03
Dino Sawr: Well it looks like the Cubs offense is fixed! No need to worry moving forward, right?

12:04
Avatar Dan Szymborski: As Homer said to Moe when Moe was going to do a car insurance scam “You’re a genius, Moe! All your troubles will soon be over for a couple of months.”

12:04
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Luckily, it’s a lousy devision

12:04
Raphie C: With the dreaded forearm tightness diagnosis being leveled on Dinelson Lamet (and recently TJ’d Adrian Morejon), do you believe the Padres have enough starting pitching depth remaining in the system to keep them viable in the home stretch of the season?

12:05
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I do.

12:05
Avatar Dan Szymborski: They have a lot of options and I’d be shocked that if they start to lose more pitching, if they weren’t aggressive about making an addition

12:05
Coby: Will the Nationals finish in last place?

12:05
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Stiull think Marlins

12:05
sdz: Would you provide a guesstimate of the probability of the Pirates finishing with 75 wins. Assume the team will not trade away the majority of the players who perform well. Thanks.

12:05
Avatar Dan Szymborski: 15%

12:06
Vader: Anything about Trevor Rogers that screams fluke, or is this kid for real?

12:06
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Nothing screams fluke. Check out the solid xERA for last season!

12:07
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Even in the most pessimistic projection system (ZiPS here), he’s already a league average dude

12:07
Avatar Dan Szymborski: He could have very easily made my breakout list

12:07
LFC Mike: McDonalds is introducing a chili dipping sauce with its BTS meal. Is the world officially coming to an end?  At least it doesn’t have beans……

12:07
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I don’t get fast food dipping sauce, because if I’m getting fast food, it’s because I’m in my car.

12:07
Avatar Dan Szymborski: And if I’m in my car, I don’t want to have sauces.

12:08
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Now, I’ve eaten soup in the car before, but after enough crotch burnings, I stick to easy-to-eat car things

12:08
Vader: Is Dustin May now the most talented starter in LA?

12:08
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It’s quite possible. I still think he’s somewhat raw still

12:08
Guest: Ke’Bryan Hayes reaggravated his wrist injury yesterday. Not the injury news I wanted to hear waking up. Meanwhile the rest of the team is…not the 2003 Tigers, I guess?

12:08
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Thanks you, mediocre division!

12:08
Champdo: Could you see the Tigers trading Turnbull or do you think they see him as a building block?

12:09
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’m not sure they think of him as a key part of the core, but I think they likely hang onto him

12:09
Bobby: For the Mets, defense is costing them games more than a lack of offense.  Should they play Guillorme instead of Davis at 3B?  Yesterday’s error filled game against the Cubs was a case in point. Davis drives in a run but his error opened the floodgates.

12:10
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’d honestly play McNeil at third and Guillorme at second with groundball pitchers on the mound, especially against righty-heavy lineups

12:11
Avatar Dan Szymborski: The Mets have a history with this kind of defensive platoon. Remember the Raffy Santana vs. Hojo/Mitchell SS split in 1986?

12:11
Avatar Dan Szymborski: That team was good!

12:11
Vader: Thanks for the chat Dan. We come to you to open our eyes to things we may be missing in the world of baseball, not in the world of chili 🙁           So what under the radar players have impressed you so far that we need to start paying attention to?

12:11
Avatar Dan Szymborski: YOU BETTER COME TO ME FOR CHILI

12:13
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Probably can’t call Glasnow/Burnes under

12:13
Avatar Dan Szymborski: what about Freddy Peralta?

12:13
Avatar Dan Szymborski: He’s been terrific

12:13
Avatar Dan Szymborski: That slider he started using last year has been nasty

12:15
Avatar Dan Szymborski: And dont’ think he’s good yet, but Naquin has been CRUSHING things

12:15
The Chicken Runs at Midnight: How many K’s before a Burnes walk? Knock on wood afterwards.

12:15
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Any walk he issues will be mercy

12:15
Avatar Dan Szymborski: He has to leave one batter alive to tell the others

12:15
Guest: Rays pitching has been hit hard by injuries and truly MEH (they’ve given up the most runs of any team in the league). How long until the Rays abandon everyone except Glasnow as a true starter and just have ~10 1x through the order guys bopping around between the majors and minors?

12:16
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I think with no true starters or just one, it becomes really hard to get enough innings without abandoning several of the true short-stint guys

12:16
Avatar Dan Szymborski: But who knows?

12:16
Wallet Inspector: Thoughts on heckling the pitcher at the ballpark while he’s warming up? Good fun or a-hole move?

12:16
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Any time on the field, heckling is allowed!

12:16
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Though I’ve never been much a heckler

12:17
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I think the last negative thing at yelled at the field was calling Jonathan Schuerholz “Johnny Nepotism” after an awful screwup in a minor league game in 2001 or so

12:17
Jim Leyland Palmer: Which of the big free agent SS have the best chances to stay at the position for the duration of their new big deals?

12:18
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I think Story likely does

12:19
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Not that I think he won’t be moved at the end

12:19
Avatar Dan Szymborski: but Seager and Correa are bigger and Correa has a regular injury history

12:19
Wallet Inspector: Nerd!!

12:19
KB: Hey Dan I’m really concerned about Dansby Swanson. Is he just not a very good hitter and it is what it is? People have always expected more because of his pedigree but with 2000 career PA under his belt his 85 OPS+ is looking like that’s about where he’ll settle in.

12:22
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I don’t think there’s necessarily anything wrong with that

12:22
Avatar Dan Szymborski: He’s an averageish player

12:23
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It’s a case of Gregg Jefferies Disease

12:24
Avatar Dan Szymborski: when a hyped player becomes underrated just because they didn’t end up amazing

12:24
Andy: Is Casey Kelly and his hard hit % to be trusted? He’s hitting the ball hard and showing patience. Is there something in there that shows this is all a mirage or is he just getting comfortable with the main catching duties in the desert?

12:25
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Did a double-take on Casey!

12:25
Avatar Dan Szymborski: But I still call Cody Bellinger Clay a lot

12:25
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I wouldn’t be too skeptical about Kelly’s ability to hit the ball really hard. He did it in 2019 after all

12:26
Danny: Assuming he stays healthy all season, Kershaw is on pace for something in the range of a 9-10 WAR season.  This would be his best season by WAR standards.  What do you give the odds of him actually accomplishing this with the change in profile this year? Over/under 10%?

12:26
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Under

12:26
Avatar Dan Szymborski: 9 WAR pitching seasons are hard

12:27
Wallet Inspector: Have you read “Thinking, Fast and Slow”?

12:27
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I have not

12:28
Avatar Dan Szymborski: My thought process is slow, and deliberative, except for the first half-second I think of something, which is always the dumbest thought I’ve ever had in my life

12:28
Avatar Dan Szymborski:

Because the first half-second I read anything, I’m a giant dumbass, my initial thought was “wait, did the Orioles actually gave the diagnosis with air quotes?”

Orioles announce Santander’s injury as “left ankle sprain.”
20 Apr 2021
12:30
Avatar Dan Szymborski:

Because my dumb brain cannot accurately process *any* headline for 0.5 seconds, any time I see a calf injury, my first assumption is that the player’s baby cow was injured and they’re leaving to go take care of it.

Surging Twins place Josh Donaldson on 10-day injured list with calf injury cbssports.com/mlb/news/surgi…
8 Aug 2020
12:30
Adam: How bad does Torres have to be this year for the Yankees to enter the 2022 shortstop bidding wars?

12:31
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Depends how much they sour on him

12:31
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Probably fairly bad?

12:31
Avatar Dan Szymborski: They stick with Gary Sanchez

12:31
Avatar Dan Szymborski: who was not popular with the fanbase for, you know, getting injured

12:31
comish4lif: Dinelson Lamet – will he get enough starts to be a useful fantasy player in 2021?

12:31
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I hope so, but the injury is a real concern

12:31
Selling Jeans: Swallows return to Capistrano and the A’s are discounted in yet another season, then get around to making history if not championships. Why does Beane/Forst constantly defy FG and every other expert?

12:31
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I can’t speak for other systems, but A’s aren’t systematically underrated in ZiPS

12:34
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Unnder current methodology, which goes back to 2014

12:34
Avatar Dan Szymborski: ZiPS projected 524 wins for A’s vs. 530 actual

12:34
Kiermaier’s Piercing Green Eyes: Can you make an exception to your “APRIL” policy to confirm that the Yankees are, indeed the worst team in the Junior Circuit?

12:34
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Sorry, I still think it’ll be the Rangers

12:34
Andrew Benintendi & Joc Pederson: 🙁

12:34
Motown Oden: Teeing you up for an “April” answer–I know it’s only 16 games, but with Tatis having been injured, is it okay for me think Jazz is most exciting player in MLB?!?!?

12:35
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It’s OK to think just about anything aesthetically!

12:35
Avatar Dan Szymborski: If you came in saying you love the Big Bang Theory, I might think your nuts, but who am I to crap on your guffaws?

12:35
BringBackDeSpanielHair: Dan, I’m freaking out at this point. I’m 0-3 in a shallow H2H league. I’ve lost Soto and Tatis and Paxton in various weeks, Gallo can’t get a pitch to hit, and Dom Smith and Eugenio Suarez can’t hit their way out of paper bags… Please tell me there’s hope for me!

12:35
Avatar Dan Szymborski: April

12:35
resumeman: is Yermin Mercedes even remotely for real, or just a hot flash?

12:35
Avatar Dan Szymborski: GUYS I DID A PIECE

12:36
Adam: Is Kenley now just George Costanza without his glasses, spotting dimes or eating onions depending on the day?  Or do you think he can keep Bad Kenley at bay with enough rest between outings?

12:37
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Nothing wrong with that!

12:37
Adam: Giants add a bat at the deadline if they’re still in the Wild Card race?

12:37
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Quite possibly. I don’t expect them to be.

12:37
luke24mm: what stat best determines how good a teams bullpen is?

12:37
Avatar Dan Szymborski: That’s mostly philosophical, no?

12:38
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I like FIP better for relievers better than starters – larger ERA oddities and harder for a reliever to show long-term ability to beat FIP

12:38
Anonymous: How many crotch-burnings were “enough” crotch burnings?

12:38
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Like 3?

12:38
BettsBellingerCaruso: Kenley Jansen Cutter velo by game

Apr 7: 89.5 mph
Apr 10: 93.5 mph
Apr 14: 90.9 mph
Apr 16: 92.9 mph
Apr 19: 93.8 mph with 95 max with disgusting movement that he hasn’t hit since 2017

I honestly don’t get what to expect from him now

Coin flip Kenley

12:38
BarryBondsJuicedForOurSins: Should Twins fans be freaking out?

12:38
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Mild concern is warranted

12:38
lgm: noticed India’s production fell off after he got beaned 4/7. Do you think that could be part of it, or was he overperforming?

12:38
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It COULD be part of it, but the data are so scant that you can’t really say there’s anything there

12:39
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I don’t like how the Reds dealt with their infield this offseason

12:41
Guest: Who do you think finishes with more rest-of-career WAR, Kershaw or Scherzer?

12:41
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Kershaw.

12:41
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Three years of age for guys in their mid 30s is a big deal

12:41
Motown Oden: In yesterday’s chat, Kevin Goldstein said he thinks if Yuli Gurriel had a full MLB career, he’d be a lock for HoF. Have you ever run a ZIPS for him that would incorporate say ages 21-31?

12:41
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I haven’t, but it might be an interesting time machine

12:42
Big Mike: Are Kyle Tucker’s early-season struggles just a matter of his .135 babip, or is there something more sinister going on here?

12:43
Avatar Dan Szymborski: His xwOBA is .370. Don’t worry abou tit

12:43
Scott: I’m imagining Dr. Evil as the Orioles team doctor

12:43
The Chicken Runs at Midnight: Name a single player who you wish would be playing in today’s era rather than the era they did play in. For example, Nolan Ryan, imagine how many strikeouts could he rack up in todays game?

12:43
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Josh Gibson

12:45
brad penny for your thoughts: is matt carpenter cooked?

12:45
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I wouldn’t go that far, but there’s definitely some Maillard reaction going on

12:46
Marshall: Between Kershaw and Degrom, who do you reckon will finish with a lower career ERA?

12:46
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’ll say Kershaw here

12:46
Chips: Lourdes Gurriel vs. Jed Lowrie ROS? Lowrie just looks so good, XWoba, etc., and Gurriel just isn’t hitting. Too reactive?

12:46
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’d just be comfortable with Gurriel for injury reasons

12:46
Blue Morpho: Is it weird I want to see the Rockies draft Jack Leiter? That would be fascinating to see him try and best the altitude and Rockies’ pitcher development.

12:47
Avatar Dan Szymborski: But why wish that on someone?

12:47
Chris: Who are your five favorite classical composers?  Your five favorite conductors, dead or living?

12:47
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Mahler, Bruckner, Liszt, Beethoven, Mozart

12:48
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I do have a love of second-tier classical/romantic era composers like Hummel, but they don’t make the pantheon

12:48
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Alkan’s really close to making my list

12:49
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Conductors, Furtwängler, Bernstein, Reiner, Svetlanov, and just for his Haydn, Fey

12:49
Guest: Rule 5 draftee Garrett Whitlock was #77 ZiPS prospect this year, and unranked by Eric. He’s been excellent so far! Why do you think ZiPS liked him so much?

12:49
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Stats!

12:50
Avatar Dan Szymborski: (OK, that’s cheap)

12:50
Avatar Dan Szymborski: He did very well in ZiPS college translations

12:50
Avatar Dan Szymborski: (Which I only use when I hae to)

12:50
Motown Oden: Time machine! That’s what I couldn’t think of, thank you!

12:51
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I guess I should call it Time Warp, consistent with the branding

12:51
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It’s one of my favorite series and we DO have a tag for it

12:51
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Last five done: Fregosi, Pedroia, Colon trade, Conigliaro, Pujols

12:51
Dino Sawr: Chili- not a great car food

12:52
Robert: Is trout morphing into a three true outcomes hitter? He is mashing, but differently so far.

12:53
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I wouldn’t go THAT far yet, but the drop in his in-play rate is worth watching

12:53
Avatar Dan Szymborski: He’s actually being more aggressive at the plate, but missing more

12:53
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’m not sure it’s meaningful right now

12:53
JoSchmo: Is Omar Narvaez now a Top 10 catcher?  Defense has improved significantly and his Statcast profile backs up his performance thus far. He was a good hitter before 2020’s disaster

12:54
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I think it quite possible

12:54
Dino Sawr: The cream jerseys that the Phillies wore yesterday should be their default home jersey

12:54
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Honestly, I’d love if the Phillies went back more towards maroon and powder blue as in the past

12:56
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I use that one when I make PHillies in WWE2K

12:56
Saddened Padres Fan: What’s your season win prediction for the Padres with Lamet, Tatis, and Morejon injuries + mediocre start + paddack not back to his 2019 self?

12:57
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It’s lower, in the 90s, but cvlearly behind Dodgers

12:57
Borscht: When do we see Wander Franco in MLB?

12:57
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’ll say August

12:57
mtc: Since we’re doing classical music, who is baseball’s current Shostakovich? (really talented but stopped from doing what he does best by evil management)

12:57
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It was the O’s who bumped Machado to third because they had JJ Hardy

12:58
Avatar Dan Szymborski: We’ll see when he’s healthy, but it might be Brendan Rodgers

12:58
Avatar Dan Szymborski: or Kris Bryant thanks to service time

12:59
Avatar Dan Szymborski: You know, Harry Potter was based off Shostakovich

12:59
Avatar Dan Szymborski:

12:59
BringBackDeSpanielHair: Dodgers vs. Padres is marketing gold. MLB needs to bottle that stuff and ship it out! Playoff intensity in April is a glorious thing.

12:59
Avatar Dan Szymborski: The first series wa sa lot of fun

12:59
Angelus Novus: German Marquez for the Shostakovich question

12:59
Chris: I’m with you where Mahler, Mozart & Beethoven are concerned.  I’ve never been able to really get into Bruckner though I enjoy the Bruno Walter recordings.  I think Furtwangler is the greatest conductor, love Reiner, Bernstein with the NY Philharmonic but not Vienna.  How about 20th century music.  Do you like Shostakovich & Profofiev?  Berg or Schoenberg?  Copland or Ives?

1:00
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I love the neoclassicists. Lukewarm at best on serialists. And I love Ives and his off-kilter eclecticism

1:01
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Ives was a huge baseball fan

1:01
Avatar Dan Szymborski:

1:01
zurzles: As someone who knows nothing about the topic, what qualities do those conductors have that make them better than other conductors?

1:01
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Interpretations

1:01
Avatar Dan Szymborski: And it’ snot really objective. It’s the favorite ones for me.

1:02
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Like, for example, a lot of people don’t like Svetlanov, who I adored. He tended to take pieces nearly to the breaking point, but some people found his interpretations very coarse

1:03
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Whiel Furtwängler had a unbelievable sense of structure, especially in Bruckner/Beethoven and how it related to climaxes

1:03
B1G League Baseball: Who is better over the next 4 years: Vlad Jr. or Yordan Alvarez?

1:03
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’ll say Vlad

1:03
mduff: Will Kiriloff be up to stay when recalled by the Twins?

1:03
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I hope so. I think he should be starting now

1:03
Enlightening Round: Votto in the three hole can’t be optimal anymore, what does it take Cincy to move him?

1:03
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Votto suggesting it

1:03
mtc: I’m fairly new to baseball (~2016) and think it’d be really cool to read a lot of current players’ prospect pedigrees. Where’s a good place to find old scouting reports on older guys like, say, Moustakas and Zach Wheeler and Randall Grichuk?

1:03
Avatar Dan Szymborski: really, old Baseball America/BP/FG archives

1:04
Avatar Dan Szymborski: find some of John Sickels old books

1:04
Avatar Dan Szymborski: You can find them on ebay

1:04
King of K: Thoughts on Eugenio? He looks completely lost at the plate.

1:04
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Sorry

1:04
Jorge: I am looking for a way to get the previous night’s line for a watchlist of minor and major league players served to my inbox in an email. You know any way to get this? I used to have a service that did it but got discontinued

1:05
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’m not familiar with one. Maybe one of the roto sites?

1:05
mduff: Are the Reds ready to hand the ball to Lucas Sims in the 9th?

1:05
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Unless it’s freezing rain!

1:05
Avatar Dan Szymborski: On that note, time to head out for another week!

1:05
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Thanks for joining me all. Hope to see you guys next time too!





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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Allan Gustafsonmember
2 years ago

Kenely Jansen throwing different pitches this year. He is getting more velocity with a two seamer. Kenley is also using a slider more this year. He is not relying on the cutter like his previous years.