Dan Szymborski FanGraphs Chat – 6/15/23

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Dan
LIVE CHAT: Dan Szymborski is chatting now.
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https://www.jotcast.com/chatTranscript.xml?id=16029

12:02
Avatar Dan Szymborski: GafternooN!

12:03
Chutzpah: Who are some prospects in this years draft you might be excited about that are not part of the top 20 group?

12:05
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Carson Roccaforte is one of the top of my head

12:06
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Cam Fisher has really fun power

12:06
Avatar Dan Szymborski: but these are probably Eric questions

12:06
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’m not an amateur draft guru

12:06
Chutzpah: What’s a realistic return for the Tigers if they traded Rodriguez and Lorenzen this year? Could they get a top bat for Rodriguez even with him being hurt right now?

12:07
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I think you could get a highly interesting prospect, but likely nowhere near top 50 for E-Rod

12:07
Avatar Dan Szymborski: IF he’s back and pitching well in July

12:08
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Problem is if he’s good enough to give a great prospect for him

12:08
Avatar Dan Szymborski: He’s good enough to opt-out

12:08
laxtonto: Which young player has the greatest variance in Zips this year from projections?

12:09
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Don’t know off-hand! I’ll probably do a midseason piece on this

12:09
Tacoby Bellsbury: Orioles-agnostic, who are your favorite players to watch play right now, and why?

12:09
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Elly De La Cruz has been great fun

12:09
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I love watching Gallen games

12:10
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It’s amazing how much of a *pitcher* he is at his age

12:10
no coast: Who is your favorite to win the NLC at this point? If Milwaukee trades Burnes, it seems like Cinci or the Cubs may be in the best position.

12:11
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I think Brewers are still the fave

12:11
Big Fan: Have you looked at Spencer Strider to see what’s going on with his last few starts?

12:11
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’ve seen his relative struggles in recent weeks but I really haven’t dug deeper into them

12:12
Avatar Dan Szymborski: And I don’t think y’all prefer I just make something up!

12:12
Trey: Does ZIPs account for changes in the playing environment via rule changes, changes to the baseball, etc? Thinking about the huge spike in stolen bases this year and how that may change projections for the future (e.g. Acuna already has 29 steals this year and ZIPs currently projects 28 steals for all of 2024)

12:12
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Remember, the 2024 projection is preseason

12:12
Avatar Dan Szymborski: ZiPS doesn’t know changes in the playing environment until the environment happens.

12:13
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I try to keep anything that’s “Dan Szymborski’s Speculation” out of ZiPS, even in cases where it would make the projection possibly more accurate

12:15
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Right now, ZiPS has him at 41 for 2024

12:16
James: Can we pencil Hunter Brown in as a middle of the rotation guy going forward?

12:17
Avatar Dan Szymborski: That’s probably underestimating him now!

12:17
Grand Admiral Braun: Would an extension in Chicago for Stroman at 4/$90M with multiple opt-outs be something you’d be fine with?

12:17
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I would be

12:18
Marcus: When Grayson Rodríguez return?

12:18
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Depends on his next few starts I think

12:18
Avatar Dan Szymborski: He was crushing it against Scranton

12:18
Avatar Dan Szymborski: But even though it was a solid game in terms of results, he was a bit wild against Gwinnett

12:18
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I think they want to see inning-to-inning consistency from him

12:18
Ben: The Red Sox are 34-35 with a run differential of 1. They were projected to be about a .500 heading into the season so none of this should be a surprise. What is the path forward to be competitive? Is the plan just to hope Casas/Bello/Mayer/Rafaela become good major leaguerers?

12:18
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Depends how willing the team is to spend.

12:19
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I think the core is a bit on the weak side at the moment, so I do think they need some prospects to work out

12:19
Endangered Marlins Fan: It’s kind of hilarious that literal giant Eury Perez has flown under the radar so far. Just watching him pitch feels like an experience

12:19
TKDC: Obviously there is a chunk of regression likely in the way, but Orlando Arcia signing for 3 years plus an option totally less than $10 million and then becoming a useful starting short stop proves that AA is indeed a witch, correct?

12:19
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Correct.

12:19
Reds Enjoyer: Hey Dan, is it realistic that the Reds can win the Central this year with how bad the starting pitching has been and the news that Lodolo is out until August? Also, would love your current estimate of the odds for each team to win the division. Thanks!

12:19
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I think it’s realistic, though not the *probable* outcome

12:20
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Most divisions, it wouldn’t be

12:20
Avatar Dan Szymborski: But the Central is baaaad

12:20
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Both of ’em

12:21
Avatar Dan Szymborski: In this case, I think our odds are about what my gut thinks

12:21
SinkingShip: How often does ZiPS project an AL or NL Central division winner with a sub-.500 record? Currently only one team in each division over that mark, and just barely at that.

12:21
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Not super often., I shared the win playoff prob chart last week, I dont’ think it’s change much

12:21
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Lemme see if I can find that

12:22
Avatar Dan Szymborski: While I look for this, listen to the music

12:22
Avatar Dan Szymborski:

12:22
Avatar Dan Szymborski:

12:23
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It’s likely that at least one NL Central team pops up above .500.

12:23
Avatar Dan Szymborski: More likely in AL Central, about 15% chance or so

12:24
B Snit’s Bongos: Will Ronald Acuna Jr. finish 2023 with 100+ total SBs and HRs?

12:24
Avatar Dan Szymborski: No

12:24
TKDC: Do you think Braves prospects often overperform their prospect ranking because the Braves seem to promote guys much faster than any other team which means by the time a guy might move up the prospect rankings, he is already in Atlanta?

12:24
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’m not sure they necessarily *do* overperform their prospect ranking

12:25
Who’s Fabio?: Hi Dan – Could show us a couple of the images you made with Bo Bichette’s head in Star Wars stills thus giving rise to baseball Jedi Knight Boba Chette?

12:25
Avatar Dan Szymborski:

12:26
Freddy: Framber in the elite tier of SP’s for you right now?

12:27
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Yes

12:28
Avatar Dan Szymborski: In the mid-June full ZiPS run, he’s fourth in projected 2024 WAR

12:28
B Snit’s Bongos: Which of these clubs will finish 2023 with the most wins? TB, MIN, TEX, ATL, PIT, ARI?

12:29
B Snit’s Bongos: Which of these clubs will finish 2023 with the most wins? NYY, CLE, HOU, MIA, MIL, LAD?

12:29
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Rays. Basically, to end up with more wins than the Rays, you have to be like 12 better than them on a seasonal basis. I don’t think that in terms of roster strength, anyone has that argument

12:29
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Houston for two

12:30
Travis: Acuna has hit 36 balls at a 110+ MPH, which is more than 23 teams and 18 more than second place, Ohtani. That’s kinda insane, right?

12:30
Avatar Dan Szymborski: He back

12:30
Guest: What is happening with Matt Rudick? Older guy beating up on younger guys? Tiny, furious man wreaking vengeance on the gods that robbed him of height?

12:30
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Altuve’s hit a lot of homers!

12:31
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’m not sure why he’s still at Binghamton at this point

12:31
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Something may have clicked for him power wise

12:31
Avatar Dan Szymborski: but he’s so old you gotta get him up against better competition if you ever want to find out

12:32
JermX: How confident are you in a turnaround for Freddy Peralta?

12:32
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Moderately!

12:33
Bryce Turangalila Symphonie: Thanks to you, I now know that BB% for minor leaguers, especially in the low minors, isn’t as important as one might imagine. Could you give me ZiPS’s opinion of one of this year’s most extreme examples, Carter Jensen?

12:33
Avatar Dan Szymborski: ha on the handle

12:33
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I mentioned the Messiaen recently a couple times. Maybe here?

12:33
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Turanga Lila in Futurama is an intentional reference from Groening

12:36
Avatar Dan Szymborski: 222/321/276

12:36
B Snit’s Bongos: Who will make the most starts in 2023? deGrom, Rodon, or Fried?

12:36
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I mean it’s not going to be degrom

12:37
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Though I guess it’s technically possible if fried and rodon were out for the season

12:37
Avatar Dan Szymborski: but the Braves have been pretty adamant, unless there’s been a very recent development I’ve missed, that Fried’s UCL isn’t damaged

12:37
Avatar Dan Szymborski: so him

12:37
B Snit’s Bongos: If you could pick only one MiLB player most deserving of a callup TODAY, who would it be?

12:37
Avatar Dan Szymborski: CES

12:39
Guest: what percentile of his preseason projections is Carroll at right now? 98?

12:39
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Percentile 2B HR BA OBP SLG OPS+ WAR 95% 35 26 .313 .400 .550 154 7.0 90% 32 24 .301 .386 .522 144 6.3 80% 30 21 .286 .370 .495 132 5.4 70% 27 19 .274 .360 .471 124 4.9 60% 25 17 .261 .351 .448 116 4.3 50% 23 16 .253 .341 .428 110 3.9 40% 21 15 .243 .335 .413 103 3.4 30% 20 13 .233 .325 .394 96 2.8 20% 18 12 .223 .312 .371 87 2.2 10% 15 10 .206 .298 .348 75 1.3 5% 13 9 .192 .279 .319 69 0.7

12:39
Avatar Dan Szymborski: gdu

12:39
Avatar Dan Szymborski: gdi

12:39
Avatar Dan Szymborski:

12:39
Avatar Dan Szymborski: This was entering the season

12:40
Avatar Dan Szymborski: His OPS+ is about 170

12:40
Avatar Dan Szymborski: but it’s in half a season, so more likely than over a full season

12:40
Avatar Dan Szymborski: so I’d guess somewhere between 90-95

12:40
Cat: How cat?

12:40
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Last I saw, Mercutio was hanging around on the cat tree in the upstairs tv room

12:41
Avatar Dan Szymborski: while the three black cats were asleep in different places in the living room

12:41
Avatar Dan Szymborski: They’re all exhausted because we had fishing pole time.

12:42
Avatar Dan Szymborski: THIS had been one of the most successful cat fishing toys

12:42
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It’s got fishing line instead of the elastic line, which is good because the catlets will bite through the black elastic cords

12:43
Avatar Dan Szymborski: and it’s really long so I can launch the toy a long way without my hand getting absolutely mauled

12:43
Avatar Dan Szymborski: because Constantine and Justinian will fly around the living room like nutballs

12:43
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Cassiopeia less so, but it still tires her out because she’s lazy

12:43
BCB: Do you think it’s okay that we allow narratives and emotions to shape MVP talk? To me it adds more flavor to baseball history when you look back at MVP races and see generally what was going through the collective baseball consciousness at that time, but I understand if others disagree

12:43
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’m really torn on the whole thing

12:43
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I don’t mind it being part of the argument

12:44
Avatar Dan Szymborski: But I think awards are the most deserving when they go to the best

12:44
Avatar Dan Szymborski: and when you bring in narratives and emotions, it ends up basically with treating players in an arbitrary fashion

12:45
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I tend to think there’s something extremely arrogant about judging players based on intangible qualities

12:45
SneakyCat: If I change my name mid chat does the software still recognize me as the same person? Trying to maximize my Dan engagement

12:45
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I can’t tell who is who

12:45
MilwaukeeBeerJays: Have you ever noticed the disproportionate amount of pictures named some variation of zach?

12:46
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Yes. I have to check every Zach/Zack

12:46
Avatar Dan Szymborski: AND THEN SOMETIMES THEY SWITCH

12:46
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Zack should be the Zack for now on.

12:47
Avatar Dan Szymborski: If you want to go buy Zach? Fine. You’re “zatch.” Non-conformings Zac types? You’re “zass.”

12:47
Avatar Dan Szymborski: And if you’re a Nix brother going by Zych? Zeitch

12:47
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I guess a Nix brother would be Zaych

12:48
Oli: how serious is Helsley’s injury?

12:48
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Any of you probably know as much as I do at this point.

12:48
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Shut down with forearm pain

12:49
Avatar Dan Szymborski: but the Cards haven’t elaborated and if Passan or Robothal haven’t heard more, I certainly haven’t

12:49
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I don’t try and play reporter. I’m an analyst!

12:49
Steve Y.: Acuña has put to bed any fears that the ACL injury might permanently alter his ability. But between the injury and the COVID season, he’s also lost a significant number of games from his prime. Given that, do you still see him as having a realistic shot to reach his inner-circle Hall of Fame ceiling?

12:49
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Yes

12:51
Avatar Dan Szymborski: ZiPS JAWS has him at 56.1 as a rightfifelder

12:51
Avatar Dan Szymborski: or a rightfielder

12:52
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Though I guess it depends on what you mean by inner-circle

12:53
Avatar Dan Szymborski: But that puts him 14th or 15th in JAWS for RF and a player that good at 25 certainly has upside of being higher

12:54
Tommy Pham: Am I for real?

12:54
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Is Pham really having a good enough season for “for real” questions?

12:54
Avatar Dan Szymborski: He’s probably been above where he is now as a player

12:54
B Snit’s Bongos: When does a sample size cease to be small?

12:54
Avatar Dan Szymborski: That’s a very complex question. It’s not linear

12:55
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’d guide you to some of FG content on the issue

12:55
blackberry cardinals: enjoyed your conversation with bernie. the cards suck.

12:56
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I was slightly worried initially because the call got disconnected when I picked up

12:56
Avatar Dan Szymborski: so I called into the studio

12:56
Avatar Dan Szymborski: naturally, when someone picked up, my first question was AM I CALLING THE CORRECT STUDIO

12:56
Avatar Dan Szymborski: For those that didn’t remember

12:57
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Back in January, I was a guest on another St. Louis radio station and they had issues calling me then too

12:57
Avatar Dan Szymborski: So asked me to call in. But I had just talked with Bernie a couple days before

12:57
Avatar Dan Szymborski: And called *that* 314 number. A perplexed producer than put me on an unrelated show, apparently as a madman who thought he was a guest and had the curious confidence of a serial killer

12:58
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I knew things were going to go bad when that segment started.

12:58
Avatar Dan Szymborski: “So, ‘Dan’ what do you want to talk about?”

12:58
Avatar Dan Szymborski: “Baseball, presumably? I’m a baseball writer after all!”

12:58
Avatar Dan Szymborski: And it went downhill from there

12:58
KB: Do FanGraphs writers read comments on their pieces? And what is the expectation as far as responding to those? Sometimes fans in the comments raise good points but get crickets from the writer.

12:58
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I don’t think we have any rule about it

12:59
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I try to read comments.

12:59
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I think it’s up to the individual writer.

12:59
Cromulent: I find fault with your Zac/Zach/Zack argument. As a Zachary, I have gone with Zac since a kid. A nickname should be the least amount of letters. You would think as a Dan you would appreciate that fact.

12:59
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Sorry Zass!

12:59
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’m very confident with comments and have a comfort with interacting with just about anyone that would be unreasonable to expect most writers to have

1:00
Avatar Dan Szymborski: But I “came of age” in the freewheeling, flamewar-filled usenet environment.

1:00
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I at least *like* to believe that among baseball writers across the entire population, I’m a pretty high percentile in terms of reader interaction.

1:01
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I’m a regular participant in Reddit, Discords, and I try to answer ever real question on Twitter

1:01
Appa Yip Yip: If you could have any feline in the world as a pet, literally any, which would you pick? To be clear, for the purposes of this it will never maul anyone and your upkeep costs would stay the same as a domestic shorthair you don’t have to go buying giant slabs of goat meat. I’m just wondering what your threshold for “big ass kitty” is.

1:02
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I don’t know, I like cats the size they are.

1:02
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Since they inevitably climb on me

1:02
Avatar Dan Szymborski: It’s bad enough trying to work when Justinian or Cassie just plop down right on me

1:03
Avatar Dan Szymborski: The thing about Galileo is that he wasn’t a “climb over you” cat. He’d expect his own seat, but right next to you. And he’d just calmly wait for the moment he thinks he can get some food out of the arrangement.

1:03
Travis: Are 22 and 23 considered prime years?

1:03
Avatar Dan Szymborski: They rpobably should be

1:03
Oops: I originally read Marcus 12:18’s question as what would Grayson Rodriguez return…

1:03
Avatar Dan Szymborski: DONT WANNA THINK THAT

1:03
James: Is there any reason Yainer Diaz should not receive 400 PAs this year?

1:03
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Nto really

1:03
Guest: well now someone has to start every chat by asking “So, ‘Dan’ what do you want to talk about?”

1:04
Scrapper: When is a player’s MLE and ZIP projections going to significantly differ?

1:04
Avatar Dan Szymborski: For one, translations are going to be a small sample size

1:04
Avatar Dan Szymborski: and the same misleading things about any MLB line is the same as in a translation

1:04
Guest: wait where are you on reddit

1:05
Avatar Dan Szymborski: I pop up freuqently in baseball reddit

1:05
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Once in a while I’ll even run something quick for them

1:05
Avatar Dan Szymborski: On that note, it’s time for me to head out for another week

1:05
Avatar Dan Szymborski: Thanks for coming everyone!

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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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filter2member
10 months ago

12:28B Snit’s Bongos: Which of these clubs will finish 2023 with the most wins? TB, MIN, TEX, ATL, PIT, ARI?

12:29B Snit’s Bongos: Which of these clubs will finish 2023 with the most wins? NYY, CLE, HOU, MIA, MIL, LAD?

I noticed that these questions refer to all teams currently in first place and all teams currently in second place, in their respective divisions, except for one team. Interesting.

-Not Bitter Orioles Fan