FanGraphs After Dark Chat – 12/19/17

10:28
Paul Swydan:

Did you enjoy the baseball parts of 2017?

Absolutely (63.8% | 145 votes)
 
Sure (30.3% | 69 votes)
 
Meh (4.4% | 10 votes)
 
Not really (0.4% | 1 vote)
 
Definitely not! (0.8% | 2 votes)
 

Total Votes: 227
10:32
Paul Swydan:

Which team that won between 70-79 games last season do you think is most likely to be better than .500 in 2018?

Toronto (10.8% | 27 votes)
 
Baltimore (0% | 0 votes)
 
Seattle (30.4% | 76 votes)
 
Texas (10.0% | 25 votes)
 
Oakland (16.8% | 42 votes)
 
Miami (1.2% | 3 votes)
 
Atlanta (4.8% | 12 votes)
 
NY Mets (17.6% | 44 votes)
 
Pittsburgh (5.2% | 13 votes)
 
San Diego (3.2% | 8 votes)
 

Total Votes: 250
7:24
Paul Swydan:

If you saw “The Last Jedi” already, where does it rank among the 9 Star Wars films for you? (Eps 1-8 + Rogue One)

Best Ever! I loved it! (2.9% | 5 votes)
 
2nd (2.9% | 5 votes)
 
3rd (7.6% | 13 votes)
 
4th (6.5% | 11 votes)
 
5th (10.0% | 17 votes)
 
6th (2.9% | 5 votes)
 
7th (1.7% | 3 votes)
 
8th (1.1% | 2 votes)
 
Dead last, I hated it. (2.3% | 4 votes)
 
I haven’t seen it yet (61.5% | 104 votes)
 

Total Votes: 169
9:03
Paul Swydan: Hi everybody!

9:03
Jeff Zimmerman: Hi

9:03
Paul Swydan: You people need to get out more!

9:03
Jeff Zimmerman: Hi

9:03
Grateful Bread: What is your realistic  prediction for when the Red’s will be competitive again? They have an interesting position player core, and Luis Castillo, Tyler Mahle, and to a lesser extent Robert Stephenson all showed some promise. Is a WC berth realistic in 2018 with some luck?

9:04
Paul Swydan: I think the division that is the most vulnerable in 2018 is the NL Central, so I won’t rule out the Reds making a Wild Card run, but they’re at the bottom of that division with the Pirates still. I’d say 2019-2020 would be more realistic.

9:05
Jeff Zimmerman: At some point, they need to try to add parts to give them a positive boost

9:05
justin seager: Would a defense of Machado at 3B, Turner at 1B and Bellinger in LF work for the Dodgers?

9:06
Jeff Zimmerman: Why not?

9:06
Paul Swydan: Yeah, I think in a vacuum that works.

9:06
John: Am I crazy to think that Machado might go for more than expected? I know he won’t get a haul but he should be worth more than mid-season rentals with a full year and the QO right? Will he get less than Lucroy and Darvish got at deadline?

9:07
Paul Swydan: He certainly won’t get less than Lucroy got. I don’t think you’re crazy at all. I think he’d fetch a lot more if the Orioles were granting the exclusive negotiating window, but maybe Machado’s reps have told the Orioles they won’t sign an extension anyway.

9:07
Jeff Zimmerman: He’ll bring back a top 10 prospect or equivalent.

9:07
PTBNL: Hanley Ramirez will be:

A) Traded
B) DFA’d

9:07
Paul Swydan: C) Neither

9:08
Jeff Zimmerman: DH

9:08
Paul Swydan: No one is trading for that albatross of a contract unless the Sox pay it all off, and that’d be pointless for them to do.

9:08
Devil Ray Jay Johnson: Zack Cozart, Jorge Polanco, or Marcus Semien in AL only OBP roto league?

9:09
Jeff Zimmerman: Polanco by far

9:10
Paul Swydan: I’ll disagree and say that I don’t think there’s much separation between the trio and to take whichever one is cheapest/you can get the latest in your draft.

9:10
Devil Ray Jay Johnson: How are your leagues adjusting for Ohtani as a two-way player?

9:10
Paul Swydan: Ottoneu is going to treat him as one player and you have to pick each day if he is at Util or Pitcher. I haven’t checked in with my CBS league to see how he’ll be accounted for.

9:11
Jeff Zimmerman: Teams will get to decide how to use him. I’m just in weekly leagues so he’ll only be used as a pitcher.

9:11
Devil Ray Jay Johnson: The best part of the Last Jedi was when it murdered the childhood of the loser sitting next to me.

9:12
Paul Swydan: LOL. It is pretty amusing listen to people bitch about how they feel betrayed. It’s a movie – it didn’t owe you anything.

9:12
Jeff Zimmerman: Just one loser?

9:12
manny machado: would i be the best ss in baseball?

9:13
Jeff Zimmerman: Tough to say …. I’d take Correa though.

9:13
Paul Swydan: NOPE. I think we need to dispense with this particular line of thinking. Machado is a third baseman. He’s going to SAY that he wants to play shortstop to give him as many options as possible on the open market, but the reality is that he’s played 6331 innings at third base, and 433 at shortstop. He’s 6’3″ and has already had a knee problem. He’s a third baseman.

9:14
Curtis: Rhys Hoskins over/under 40hrs in 2018?

9:14
Paul Swydan: Under

9:14
Jeff Zimmerman: Under

9:14
Dmitry: Do you think theres an unmeasured negative WAR for a catcher like Sanchez, whose past ball tendancies make pitchers change their pitch selections to avoid balls in the dirt?

9:15
Paul Swydan: I don’t think there’s any way we could accurately suss out how much pitchers change their pitch mix to avoid passed balls. Some pitchers don’t just care about passed balls. Some would only feel pressure in certain situations, etc. Your comparable sample of “passed ball situations” between him and other Yankees catchers for each pitcher would be a minuscule sample.

9:15
Jeff Zimmerman: Maybe a bit but not a ton. Fractions of a Win

9:15
Brian: Is Clint Frazier and Chance Adams enough for Cole? I think he’s being overrated and I wouldn’t want to give up Sheffield or Andujar for him

9:16
Paul Swydan: I think you probably have to give up 3 of those guys to get Cole, but I’m not sure I’d do that deal either. I’d much prefer the Frazier and Ellsbury for Samardzija type of deal.

9:17
Jeff Zimmerman: Maybe …. I am a chance fan so I don’t like it.

9:17
Jeff Zimmerman: BRB …

9:17
HaloHonk27: Angels need bullpen help, unless I’m missing something. Any chance they get one of the 3 top tier RP?

9:17
Paul Swydan: At this point, I wouldn’t count the Angels on any free agent who could be remotely helpful to them, so sure. I could see that happening.

9:17
Steve: Likelihood Ronald Acuna starts Opening Day for Braves? After April 20th? After June 2nd? Do you like Acuna or Buxton best long term?

9:18
Paul Swydan: That likelihood went way up with the Kemp trade, but I’m still skeptical.

9:18
Dallas Cankle: If Clayton Kershaw opts-out next year what’s the highest Farhan Friedman goes before saying uncle?

9:19
Paul Swydan: I think that’ll actually be a really interesting discussion. They don’t seem like the kind of front office who will be swayed by sentiment, and if Kershaw has back problems for a third consecutive season in 2018, I could see the Dodgers not making much of an effort to keep him at all.

9:19
ChiSox2020: Why aren’t White Sox taking on Matt Kemp + good prospect from Dodgers?

9:20
Jeff Zimmerman: … back

9:21
Paul Swydan: Well, first of all, Kemp has been back on the Dodgers for like 15 seconds, and it’s the week before Christmas, so, easy tiger. But I sincerely doubt the Dodgers want to give up a good prospect to get rid of Kemp. If they are motivated to do so however, I would expect to see the White Sox make a play for him.

9:21
Jeff Zimmerman: Someone will. They may be playing chicken with the Dodgers to get a better deal. The Dodgers don’t want Kemp

9:21
Orchid: In 12-man point keeper league, I have to choose 2 player among Hosmer, Conforto, Matt Olson. Who should I give up?

9:21
Paul Swydan: Gotta wait to see where Hosmer signs. If he ends up in San Diego or a pitcher’s park, then you gotta drop him like he’s hot.

9:22
Jeff Zimmerman: Hosmer and Conforto

9:22
Jeff Zimmerman: Hosmer’s better in points

9:22
Eddie Dingle: Why have the Mariners been unsuccessful in player development? Do you know if it’s a personnel issue, or have they just been really unlucky?

9:23
Jeff Zimmerman: I have no idea. It’s like I don’t know why the Cards are so good at it.

9:23
Paul Swydan: I’m not really qualified to answer this question, but my understanding is that the Jack Z regime took a lot of shortcuts, and you can’t really do that in player development.

9:24
Ben: Could Dyson fit on the Cubs?  On the surface that OF might look crowded but if they maybe moved Happ for a good arm they could have Dyson out there in left to close out ballgames after Schwarber has had two or three abs.  Great base runner.  Could maybe lead off a bit.  I don’t know…

9:25
Jeff Zimmerman: I’d wait and see how everything goes down before going for Dyson. Also, I could see a team give Dyson a fulltime job like the Giants

9:25
Paul Swydan: I think if Almora or Schwarber or Happ was traded that Dyson would fit in there very well, but right now, with Almora/Schwarber/Happ/Heyward/Zobrist they already have five outfielders, so it’s hard to see how they’d currently fit Dyson into the mix.

9:26
Paul Swydan: Yeah, I too hope Dyson gets a full-time job. He’s one of my faves.

9:26
Ben: How about a Justin Wilson for Dellin Betances trade?  Yankees could use a lefty and he was good for them.  Betances should hold at least some appeal to the Cubs.

9:26
Paul Swydan: Challenge trade! I love it!

9:26
Jeff Zimmerman: It’s just rearranging deck chairs

9:27
Ben: I feel like there’s a solid case to be made for the Phillies to play at the top of the SP market.  They have to be good enough to induce future FAs to consider them as a destination.  What are your thoughts on that?

9:27
Paul Swydan: I don’t entirely disagree with the notion, but they have to be really convinced that they’ll contend in the next three seasons.

9:28
Jeff Zimmerman: I like starting early like the Cubs did with Lester. Look for deals a year or two early.

9:28
Paul Swydan: One thing that would embolden me if I was the Phillies is the fact that the Mets, Braves and Marlins are still tire fires, and the Nationals are in the last year of their run with this team.

9:28
Paul Swydan: So come 2019 it’s a wide-open division and there’s no reason the Phillies can’t step up and take it.

9:29
Ben: Over/Under 200.5 M…. Donaldson’s total guarantee in FA

9:29
Paul Swydan: Over

9:30
Jeff Zimmerman: Under, I’m afraid he may fall apart and scare teams off

9:30
Who is Stubby Clapp?: Who wins in a cage match: Dan Lozano or Scott Boras?

9:30
Jeff Zimmerman: Us

9:30
Paul Swydan: Well, I’ve never met Dan Lozano, but I’ve met Boras. He’s a big dude, and he’s got rings. I wouldn’t bet against Boras!

9:30
Paul Swydan: Also, yes, what Jeff said.

9:31
Nathan P: Where can I find a list of pitchers with the highest amount of walks per 9 innings?

9:31
Paul Swydan: On FanGraphs dot com, of course!

9:31
Paul Swydan: Here’s the list of qualified starting pitchers from 2017: http://www.fangraphs.com/leaders.aspx?pos=all&stats=pit&lg=all&qual=y&…

9:31
Paul Swydan: You can adjust from there.

9:32
Big Joe Mufferaw: Justin Wilson has NEVER been as good as Betances. Definitely not something yankees would do

9:32
Jeff Zimmerman: …. and I wrote up the leader for one magazine but don’t remember who it was

9:32
Paul Swydan: It might be if the Yankees were determined to get rid of Betances. If they are convinced that he needs a fresh start, they might take less than they otherwise would just to get him out the door.

9:32
Jeff Zimmerman: But Betances choked in last season

9:32
Ben: Are people underrating the Nationals after Harper? They still look like the best team in that division going forward.

9:33
Jeff Zimmerman: Really depends on what they do with their Harper money. Spend it wisely or just spend to spend

9:34
Paul Swydan: So, OK, it’s not just Harper. Daniel Murphy, Gio Gonzalez, Matt Wieters, Sean Doolittle, Ryan Madson and Shawn Kelley are all free agents as well.

9:34
Jeff Zimmerman: They could add SP, Bat, and Closer with Harper’s cost

9:34
Paul Swydan: Also, how many good seasons does Ryan Zimmerman have left? They owe him $18M in 2019.

9:35
Jeff Zimmerman: Don’t underestimate a Zimmerman

9:35
Paul Swydan: Anthony Rendon is a free agent in 2020.

9:35
Paul Swydan: Never!

9:35
Paul Swydan: Just sayin’.

9:36
AA-Ron: Should mlb adopt any rules to prevent ownership groups from Marlin-izing fan bases?

9:36
Paul Swydan: They shouldn’t have to. Just don’t sell to groups that aren’t liquid. They did it with Frank McCourt, and now they’ve done it again. They’ll learn eventually, I guess.

9:36
Jeff Zimmerman: No, I just think the Marlins are going about it really bad

9:36
Harps: Isn’t a projected 50 WAR(being conservative) over 10 years worth like 500mil? Why is Harper “only” looking at 400?

9:37
Paul Swydan: I’m sure Harper is looking at $500M. Don’t worry.

9:37
Jeff Zimmerman: Teams for sale are f’d up usually and need fixing

9:37
Jeff Zimmerman: Harper will get bank

9:38
Roger: Who gets a bigger extension: Correa or Lindor?

9:38
Paul Swydan: I don’t think either is going to sign an extension. I think baseball is entering a new world order. Everyone is going to see how much money Harper and Machado etc get next winter and say “I want that too.”

9:38
Jeff Zimmerman: Correa but not sure

9:38
Paul Swydan: Mookie Betts and Francisco Lindor already turned down huge extensions. I don’t think that was an accident.

9:39
Frank: Has Addison Russells value deteriorated to where he can’t headline a package for a young, cost controlled SP?

9:39
Paul Swydan: I think it’s partially that Russell’s value has diminished and partially that most teams just don’t have a glaring need at shortstop that is conspiring against him leading such a package.

9:39
Jeff Zimmerman: Maybe but some team may still think he has it

9:40
Gleybeer Torres: Chance JD Martinez ends up anywhere other than Boston?

9:41
Paul Swydan: There’s always a chance, but it seems like Boras is just waiting until Dombrowski blinks.

9:41
Jeff Zimmerman: Over 50%. Some team/owner may just stupid wanting to win

9:41
not Marlins Man: Forgive me for the less than serious topic, but any thoughts on the circus that was tonight’s Marlins town hall meeting? I’m heartbroken that there isn’t a video of Jeter vs. Marlins Man https://www.sbnation.com/mlb/2017/12/19/16798734/marlins-man-derek-jet…

9:42
Paul Swydan: I think that Marlins Man is a clown and I wish he was relegated to the sideshow already. Wearing an orange visor doesn’t make one deserving of press coverage.

9:43
Jeff Zimmerman: Agree, some points sound awesome … and in even more unrelated news, I drafted Brett Cecil in a 50 round draft-and-hold league

9:44
Tom: Jackie Bradley for Zach Greinke:  ARI gets a big upgrade over Tomas in the OF and can use the money saved on Greinke to upgrade at catcher, sign a cheaper starter, and/or pursue an extension with Pollock or Goldschmidt.  BOS gets a great starter to fill the hole left by the ERod injury and potential suspension of Wright; and they free up an OF slot to sign JD Martinez.   Taking on Greinke and JD both is expensive, but the Sox are already over the CBT threshold, so the payroll ramifications are relatively limited.  Who says no?

9:44
Jeff Zimmerman: Boston, I think the money is a major factor

9:45
Paul Swydan: I’m not sure that John Henry wants to pay both Greinke and Martinez, so I’ll say the Red Sox would say no first. But that’s certainly an interesting idea.

9:45
Andrew: Over/under WAR for JBJ in 2018: 3.0?  No pushing allowed.

9:45
Paul Swydan: Over

9:45
Jeff Zimmerman: Under if with Boston, over elsewhere

9:45
Sonny: Red Sox seem like good fit for Machado. Xander headlines trade w lotto ticket A ball arm to Baltimore. Xander will cost $100M+ less in extension costs if Baltimore wants to keep him or flip next season before FA

9:45
Paul Swydan: Sox aren’t trading Bogaerts for Machado.

9:46
Paul Swydan: Again, Machado can claim he’s a shortstop all he wants, but he’s not. Bogaerts for Machado leaves the Sox with two third baseman and zero shortstops.

9:46
Jeff Zimmerman: That trade makes zero sense

9:46
Ben: This is a weird question… Let’s say MIA does not trade Yelich and Realmuto.  Let’s say those two, in protest, decided to come out in spring training and every time they came to the plate they DID NOT SWING.  On D they would do their best for their teammates but they would take every pitch.  What do you think would happen???

9:46
Paul Swydan: They’d find themselves on the bench real quick. No manager would stand for that insubordination.

9:47
Jeff Zimmerman: I’m with Paul

9:47
Paul Swydan: If they’re not going to swing, they wouldn’t have any value, and would be easy to replace.

9:47
Henry: Have either of you seen Lady Bird? I saw it last weekend and thoroughly enjoyed it, albeit not quite as much as the critics. Although the general coming-of-age theme can be understood by anyone, I wonder if some of it is more often appreciated by woman.

9:47
Paul Swydan: I haven’t seen it yet, no. It’s on the list, but I doubt I’ll get to see it in the theater.

9:47
Jeff Zimmerman: I have not seen it

9:48
Ben: What is the absolute best move SD could make this winter?

9:48
Paul Swydan: Sitting out the free-agent market?

9:48
Jeff Zimmerman: Just wait for deals, they have so many holes to fill

9:48
North Side Nihilists: Assuming he didn’t fatigue, how many balls could you put in play if you faced 100 Kershaw pitches in a live game scenario?

9:48
Paul Swydan: Zero.

9:49
Jeff Zimmerman: If he mixed pitches, none. I would be good comedy on the breaking balls.

9:50
Jeff Zimmerman: I can time up a fastball to make contact once.

9:50
Paul Swydan: That’s the spirit, Jeff!

9:50
Ben: Will Anthony Rizzo ever hit 40 HRs in a season?

9:50
Paul Swydan: I want to say yes.

9:50
Jeff Zimmerman: yes

9:51
Paul Swydan: Leave it to a Cubs fan to not be pleased with 4 straight 30+ HR seasons though. Good lord.

9:51
Ben: Talk has been made of Harper wanting to come to CHC.  Maybe he does maybe he doesn’t.  Would the Cubs be better off trying to give that money to Bryant?  He seems like he has a little less volatility than Harper in terms of being a franchise Icon.

9:51
Jeff Zimmerman: Why not both

9:51
Paul Swydan: Yes, they would be better off giving the money to the devil they know than the devil they don’t, but again, I don’t think stars are going to be signing extensions anymore. They’ll wait out the arbitration process and get paid as free agents.

9:52
Paul Swydan: Also, why not both indeed.

9:52
Paul Swydan: Ricketts has extra money now that he shut down Gothamist.

9:53
Big Joe Mufferaw: People seem to be forgetting about Gary Sanchez for next season, but lets not forget he hit 33 HR after missing a month and is avging 50 HR per 162. How many HR’s do you expect from him in 2018?

9:53
Paul Swydan: I didn’t forget about him. Yankee-ness aside, I love Sanchez. I’d peg him for 35-37 HR, just on the strength of him not getting enough PA to get to 40-50.

9:54
Jeff Zimmerman: 32, as a catcher I expect him to get hurt at some point

9:55
Mike Rizzo: If I made a play for Realmuto, would the better tactic be to offer to pick up a contract like Prado’s and send a marginal prospect or two? Or to offer a blue chip talent like Soto? Or will it take both?

9:55
Paul Swydan: Probably the former. I wouldn’t offer a blue chipper for Realmuto either way. He’s not THAT good. Just, you know, better than the Nats’ current catchers.

9:55
Jeff Zimmerman: Agree to take the $$, the Marlins love saving money

9:55
Ben: Next non-Trout position player to record a 10 win season?

9:55
Paul Swydan: Great question!

9:56
Jeff Zimmerman: Otani?

9:56
Paul Swydan: Correa, Bryant, Harper and Ohtani are at the top of my list.

9:56
Jeff Zimmerman: Harper maybe

9:56
Paul Swydan: If you want me to pick one, I’ll say Correa.

9:56
Ben: Will King Felix rebound?

9:57
Paul Swydan: Sadly, I am no longer expecting him to rebound. I hope he does though!

9:57
Jeff Zimmerman: I’m betting on yes in drafts so far. Price is so low

9:57
Michael J: Will the Dodgers regret letting Morrow (and most likely Watson) walk? It seems like a huge loss, but Friedman has figured out ways to get bullpen options for cheap.

9:57
Paul Swydan: Yeah, I don’t think they’ll regret it.

9:57
Jeff Zimmerman: The only have 26 pitchers to choose from now

9:58
Hunky Dory: Was consoling a Nats fam friend last night and found myself explaining that the only competition in the division (Mets) were no competition at all.  How sad are those loyal to the orange and blue, and how can we as a nation get the Mets respectable ownership?

9:58
Paul Swydan: Well that’s easy. Stop going to Citi Field. Stop buying merch. Stop watching on TV. Stop talking about them unless it’s to formally protest them.

9:58
Jeff Zimmerman: What Paul said.

9:59
Paul Swydan: The Wilpon’s are leeches, and you have to bleed them dry. You have to make it clear to their sponsors that you won’t purchase their products if they sponsor the Mets. You have to make the name “Mets” sound like poison when it falls out of someone’s mouth.

9:59
Paul Swydan: But none of that is going to happen organically. So if you really want new owners, you gotta get organized.

10:00
Moody: Hey Paul…keep 2:  Strasburg $41, Thor $37, Drew Pomeranz $6.  Thx!

10:00
Paul Swydan: I’d keep Strasburg and Pomeranz just because I’m too risk averse to keep Thor.

10:01
Jeff Zimmerman: Assuming $260 league, Stras and Pem. Stras’s price is a little high be may be lower than the free agent inflation amount because it is a keeper league.

10:02
ChiSoxMatt: Eloy Jimenez vs Rafael Devers: Who has a better career?

10:02
Jeff Zimmerman: Jimenez

10:02
Paul Swydan: Tough one, but I’ll say Eloy. I hope I’m wrong though!

10:02
Trent: With no cheap extensions, how do the Rays compete in the years ahead?

10:03
Paul Swydan: To behave like the team that gets ~$200M in BAM money, revenue sharing and national TV contract money before they sell a ticket that they are?

10:03
Jeff Zimmerman: They don’t really, the need to reset.

10:03
Paul Swydan: Getting a new ballpark would probably help. They could always try to stop extorting their local governments, and work WITH them. A novel concept, I know.

10:04
Timmy : Is Roy Halladay a first-ballot hall of famer?

10:04
Paul Swydan: Whether he was before or not is irrelevant, he certainly will be now.

10:04
Jeff Zimmerman: Probably now

10:04
Bill: If the Red Sox sign JD Martinez, would it make sense to release Hanley?

10:05
Jeff Zimmerman: Yes but they may save face and trade him for nothing and let the other team release him.

10:05
Paul Swydan: It depends on how risk averse the team is. His 2019 option vesting would be very bad news for the Red Sox, but he’s usually hurt, so you could just rely on him getting hurt. But you never know.

10:06
Paul Swydan: You also never know what’ll happen in the FanGraphs After Dark Chat, which is what makes it so much fun. That’s going to do it for us tonight, and also for this year.

10:06
Jeff Zimmerman: Bye

10:06
Paul Swydan: Thanks for hanging out with us this year. You all are the best in our eyes. See you in 2018!

10:06
Paul Swydan: Happy Holidays!





Paul Swydan used to be the managing editor of The Hardball Times, a writer and editor for FanGraphs and a writer for Boston.com and The Boston Globe. Now, he owns The Silver Unicorn Bookstore, an independent bookstore in Acton, Mass. Follow him on Twitter @Swydan. Follow the store @SilUnicornActon.

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Ecofolux
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Ecofolux

What is more likely in their peak season, Judge hits 65HR or Gary Sanchez hits 45HR?