FanGraphs After Dark Chat – 5/12/15

5:35
Paul Swydan: Hi everybody! Jeff is going to be helping coach his daughter’s machine pitch softball team tonight, so you’re stuck with just me. So that means we need extra questions in the queue. So get them in there and I’ll see you at 9 pm ET!

9:01
Paul Swydan: OK, let’s do this.

9:02
Paul Swydan: Note – I have Lance Lynn in fantasy, and I want it known that I’m nervous about the Cardinals’ bullpen blowing this win for me.

9:02
Paul Swydan: Fantasy baseball, yey!

9:02
Comment From Zach Sanders
HI PAUL!

9:03
Paul Swydan: HI ZACH!

9:04
Comment From Peter Parker
Which side wins: E5/Pap/Hamels or Max/Ortiz/Wade Davis?

9:04
Paul Swydan: I’ll take the Encarnacion side.

9:04
Comment From Total clown
If the Patriots’ punishment was to take the place of the relegated Phillies in the NL East next year, how many baseball games could they win over the season? They could start training now, I suppose.

9:04
Paul Swydan: 35, maybe? It wouldn’t be pretty.

9:05
Comment From Beetlejuice! Beetlejuice! Beetlejuice!
Hey Paul, getting killed by Cargo in my keeper league. Would you trade him and Kris Bryant for Machado and Hosmer?

9:05
Paul Swydan: No, because Bryant is the best player in that deal, and I wouldn’t be that desperate to trade Bryant in a keeper league.

9:06
Comment From OldManRoto
So, is Xander B. showing improvement at the plate? Will he reach 80% of his wunderkid projections from a couple years ago?

9:07
Paul Swydan: So far, the plate discipline has improved a great deal, but it’s still too early to call that a concrete win, and the power just isn’t there. I still believe, but my patience is being tested.

9:07
Comment From Secret Upton
If you had to bet on one current MLB player to still be an active player in 2030, who would you pick? Let’s say Trout and Harper are ruled out as options, to make it more interesting.

9:08
Paul Swydan: Here’s the qualified players at 22 or younger. I’ll say Mookie Betts, because I worry about Machado’s health.

http://www.fangraphs.com/le…

9:09
Comment From Secret Upton
Say you’ve become an ace pitcher after successfully navigating a tricky genie wish scenario. Your GM offers to go out and acquire someone in the league to be your personal catcher – who do you ask for?

9:10
Paul Swydan: Well, Russell Martin wouldn’t be a bad get. Or maybe I’m just saying that because I’m reading Big Data Baseball.

9:10
Paul Swydan: Lucroy would also be good.

9:10
Comment From Voice of the People
Drop Pomeranz, Fiers or Bucholz for Carlos Rendon?

9:10
Paul Swydan: Fiers or Buchholz

9:10
Paul Swydan: Probably Buchholz

9:10
Paul Swydan: Though Fiers won’t get you many wins.

9:11
Comment From Big Ed
Who’s more likely to make a difference?–Medlen, Corbin, or is it just a crapshoot?

9:11
Paul Swydan: I’ll buy on Corbin before Medlen.

9:11
Comment From zack
AROD is back! Seriously the guy has been so vilified I am actually rooting for him

9:11
Paul Swydan: Samesies

9:11
Comment From Ryan
If you’re an ace pitcher already, though, do you need a good pitch framer? Why not ask for someone like Posey who can give you some run support?

9:12
Paul Swydan: Oh well that’s totally fair, but the way he said personal catcher I went with a framer. I don’t know that an ace definitively doesn’t need a good framer. Probably not, though.

9:12
Comment From E
How do the Indians solve their defensive issues?

9:12
Paul Swydan: Same way they could have solved them last year – promote Lindor. This isn’t complicated.

9:12
Comment From Eric
I tried Tinder for fun and came away realizing I am pick,shallow, and terrible person. “They don’t have blue eyes…Reject”. People like this?

9:13
Paul Swydan: Yes? I don’t know, I’ve never used it or even seen it.

9:13
Comment From Secret Upton
What player currently in the majors would get the biggest boost in his production by moving from his current team to the Rockies?

9:13
Paul Swydan: Giancarlo Stanton? He’d at least be the most fun, I know that.

9:13
Comment From Nittanychris
In a 12 team mixed auction keeper league, what level of starting pitcher would be fair value for a $2 Carlos Correa?

9:14
Paul Swydan: Gotta be at least a Jordan Zimmermann, #2 starter type. $2 Correa — that’s gold, Jerry! GOLD!

9:14
Comment From zack
Mark Texeira has a .181 BABIP this year, which would shatter the record for all time low. Chances he does it?

9:14
Paul Swydan: He’s got a better chance than most!

Also, the Cardinals tacked on 4 runs, hopefully safeguarding my Lance Lynn win. Sorry Indians fans.

9:14
Paul Swydan: Or, Indians fan.

9:15
Comment From Sshhh…no one knows Im here
I watched a game on ESPN the other night and could have sworn I saw a dot or smudge that looked like pine tar on the pitcher’s bill. Kruky and Schilling didn’t say anything about it, but if it truly was, isn’t that illegal? Didn’t Pineda get busted for that a couple of years ago?

9:16
Paul Swydan: Just as every quarterback messes with the PSI of their balls, so too does every pitcher have some sort of gunk or cut or whatever on the ball. When it’s called out it’s usually for other reasons. In Pineda’s case, that he wasn’t being subtle enough.

9:16
Comment From Sshhh…no one knows Im here
I think I’m ready to give up on Micah Johnson. I thought he’d be a steals machine. Dude can’t get on base!!

9:17
Paul Swydan: I mean, he’s at 80 plate appearances and counting. If you want to cut bait in fantasy, sure, but in real life that’s a little quick.

9:17
Comment From Abe
Habs or Lightning?

9:17
Paul Swydan: I don’t follow the NHL anymore, but the next time I pick the Habs for anything other than the gas chamber or firing squad will be the first time.

9:18
Comment From John
Is redmond serious? Ramos is clearly the best option. I understand not wanting to “anoint” a new closer, but he mentioned bryan morris. Bryan Morris! He is awful!

9:19
Paul Swydan: Managers just say this sort of stuff to give themselves outs. IE, if Ramos fails he can say “well I always said it would be a committee.” If Ramos handles things well as expected, he’ll be the guy. Deep breaths, John.

9:19
Comment From John
lets say you are in a super deep NL only roto league where your whole roster counts toward your stats (no bench). you unfortunately have dan uggla and tuffy gosewich on your roster, and the only way you can replace them if they aren’t hurt is by putting in a claim on someone who was just dropped by another team. Elian Herrera and Andrew Susac were both just dropped, its unlikely I can claim both based on my position. Which would you prioritize? #deep league problems

9:19
Paul Swydan: Definitely Susac.

9:20
Paul Swydan: Also, if your league is that deep, then whoever dropped Susac should be slapped.

9:20
Comment From John
is Cargo fixable? all his stats seem in like with career – except he is hitting less fly balls, but LD%, K%, BB% all the same as his career. HIs BABIP is 100pts below his career. Is this something that might actually turn around?

9:20
Paul Swydan: I wrote last Friday that I was pessimistic about his chances, because I’m not sure his knee pain is ever going to go away, but you’re right in saying that his BABIP should come back up some.

9:21
Comment From JCA CPA CA
Will the new market efficiency be having switch hitters in the line up to give managers “coaching anxiety” over how to play bull pen against a line up?

9:21
Paul Swydan: I don’t think that’s an exploitable market inefficiency, because switch hitters are generally well regarded, and not so easy to acquire.

9:21
Comment From steelie
have you had the chance to see kang recently? if so is his current production the results of any progress?

9:22
Paul Swydan: I haven’t had a chance to watch him, but I picked him up just based on Hurdle playing him more. The results are nice, but it’s hard to judge with so few PA. Hopefully he gets some good run the next few weeks and we can get a better picture.

9:22
Comment From Matt
More graceful decline: David Ortiz or Matt Holiday? Both kinda have borderline HoF cases too.

9:22
Paul Swydan: That’s a tough one. I guess I have to say Ortiz, just because his career is closer to being finished.

9:23
Comment From francis
I got the feeling Pineda was hurt last year and wanted to get caught. He hit the DL right afterwards.

9:23
Paul Swydan: Interesting theory! I mean that sincerely.

9:23
Comment From Jompo Chief Osoyunti
Mike Trout trade for any fifteen players on the other team’s active major league roster: which side says no?

9:23
Paul Swydan: The other side, probably. 15 guys would be pretty unprecedented.

9:23
Comment From Clark Waveland
If you had Bryant in a keep-forever league without any money or round costs attached, how long is the list of players that you would take in return in a deal?

9:24
Paul Swydan: Less than 10, probably.

9:24
Comment From Trotskys Ice Pick
Where would Buxton be on your 2030 list? I know he is only AA(which) he is killing, but he is 21 and elite CF/speed gives him a high floor to go with the massive ceiling

9:24
Paul Swydan: Not sure he would make it. First off, I don’t KNOW he’s going to be good in the majors. Second, he’s already been hurt a couple of times, which is at least a minor yellow flag.

9:24
Comment From francis
Bartolo Colon will be around in 2030.

9:24
Paul Swydan: Truth.

9:25
Comment From Ryan
My staff consists of Strasburg, Kluber, Hughes, Quintana, and Iwakuma. Help me? Please?

9:25
Paul Swydan: Yikes. Sometimes these things happen.

9:25
Comment From Dave Nilsson
Is Carlos Gonzalez worth a WW pick up in a 12 team SB/HR/OBP/SLG/RC league?

9:25
Paul Swydan: He’s worth a pick up if you can comfortably keep him on your bench and not play him until you know he’s right. Otherwise, no.

9:26
Comment From Guest
How is deflategate any different than the Pineda pine tar incident? I am serious. I don’t understand.

9:26
Paul Swydan: It’s really not. The only difference is that Goodell’s NFL craves soap opera-like drama, and MLB is run like a business, as it should be.

9:27
Comment From francis
Arrieta no hitter tonight ?

9:27
Comment From francis
Forget it

9:27
Paul Swydan: Just noting for the record that it was all Francis’ fault!

9:27
Comment From Jompo Chief Osoyunti
Crazy to sell Ortiz low to buy Hosmer high?

9:28
Paul Swydan: I wouldn’t call it crazy, because I could see Hosmer having a .360 BABIP season, but I still wouldn’t do it. Not yet.

9:28
Comment From Matt
You don’t think Boston would actually target Tulo, do you? That seems like a bad idea unless you want aging HanRam,Sandoval,Pedroia, and Tulo in their decline. I mean they could do it, but I am not seeing it. Shame Wheeler got hurt, A Xander-Tulo-Wheeler 3 way trade would have by been fun

9:29
Paul Swydan: I think it depends on the price tag. If the Rockies don’t want to eat any money, then the price tag will be lower. Let’s not pretend – the Red Sox can afford Tulo’s contract and decline phase.

9:29
Comment From JCA CPA CA
Best duo at the end of the pen: NYY/SDP/KCR?

9:30
Paul Swydan: Tough, but I’ll say KC.

9:30
Comment From francis
Jacoby Ellsbury as MVP ? % likelihood …

9:30
Paul Swydan: If the Yankees keep winning? He’ll get plenty of love, because the writers will be happy to advocate for the best non-Arod player.

9:30
Comment From Will
How much stock do you put into Stanton’s early season struggles? Frankly, I don’t think he looks right at the plate. I don’t want to say he looks scared… but he looks scared.

9:32
Paul Swydan: I honestly haven’t had much time to watch him. It’s definitely concerning that he’s making less contact, but if he was truly scared, wouldn’t you argue that he would be swinging less as well? He isn’t doing that, he’s swinging more than last year.

9:32
Paul Swydan: That was an embarrassing swing by Kinsler.

9:32
Comment From Will
Are the Marlins better than their record says they are?

9:33
Paul Swydan: According to Base Runs, ya, they’re way better than their record:

http://www.fangraphs.com/de…

9:33
Comment From francis
I don’t watch much Yankee broadcasts. Do they mention how much better the team is now that they don’t have a guy with a .620 OPS in the 2 hole ?

9:34
Paul Swydan: I don’t either, but the one time I did (when I was in NY and had no choice) they did not mention that, haha.

9:34
Comment From John
whats the deal with fiers? in most innings of the game he is unhittable, then he’ll give up 2 doubles and a homer. Or walk 4 consecutrive guys. What does he need to do differently?

9:35
Paul Swydan: There’s not much he can do differently. He’s all about location, because he doesn’t have much velocity. Sometimes, he will be pristine, and no one will square him up. But more often than not, by the third time through the order, guys will have him timed well enough to do some damage.

9:35
Comment From Eric
I put you in the batters box vs. Chapman pumping 102mph, do you either Run away and cry, have an accident in your pants, or faint?

9:36
Paul Swydan: Faint, maybe. I want to at least stand in there and say that I did it. No running away for sure.

9:36
Comment From Mr. Met
I’m watching the Mets game. Syndergaard impressive, but any chance Matz replaces Gee during the 6-man rotation the Mets were planning?

9:37
Paul Swydan: Well, I think that this 6-man thing they’re “planning” is probably more of a “we know someone will get hurt, but we don’t know who, so we’re trying to appease everyone for the moment” kind of plan. But no, I think Gee is there til he’s traded or hurt.

9:37
Comment From Guest
Is Adam Jones just proving us haters wrong? We kept calling for a cliff and….he makes an adjustment that makes him better…

9:37
Paul Swydan: I love Adam Jones. Not every player needs to play the game the exact same way. Do you know how boring that would be?

9:38
Paul Swydan: Whoa, Soria in in a tie game. Is Ausmus learning?

9:38
Comment From francis
I’d rather watch Gamecast than Michael Kay.

9:39
Comment From Sir Boinksalot
Is there any metric of SABR type analysis that has fallen off with time/become devalued?

9:40
Paul Swydan: I feel like people don’t use WPA and RE24 as much as they should. I feel like we rarely use SIERA. I think stats like OPS and OPS+ and Bill James’ Win Shares have all come into and out of vogue. Well, maybe Win Shares never came into vogue…some of BP’s stats have been replaced over the years, or changed names. Or gone out of style. There’s definitely a bunch.

9:41
Comment From Guest
Can Bonds win this collusion case against MLB? I mean…it was pretty obvious.

9:41
Paul Swydan: In general, collusion cases are pretty tough to prove. I think this is more about Bonds trying to help restore his reputation by reminding people just how good he was in his final season.

9:41
Comment From El Guapo
My fantasy baseball season hinges upon Yasiel Puig returning soon and being very good. Is that really bad?

9:42
Paul Swydan: No, your fantasy baseball season could be like mine and hinge on two of Yordano Ventura, Lance Lynn and Michael Wacha striking out batters on a consistent basis (note: there is definitely not two of them doing this)

9:42
Comment From Mr. Met
What’s your beverage of choice when you do these Dark Chats?

9:42
Paul Swydan: Usually water, but tonight I am enjoying a Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy.

9:43
Comment From francis
NBA coach seems to be ridiculously overrated. If your star gets hurt or traded, you become a lousy coach. Phil Jackson was smart to quit when Jordan did.

9:44
Paul Swydan: I don’t think they’re overrated at all. I think a guy like Phil Jackson has given notion to the notion that players are the only important variable, and that may be more true today than it was in the past, but the coaches are still hugely important.

9:44
Comment From John
my fantasy season hinges on brandon mccarthy doing what he did with the yankees, oh wait a minute

9:44
Comment From Sir Boinksalot
You’re from MA, correct? Do you care about the Tom Brady thing/deflategate. I feel like hardcore baseball writers generally loathe all things football.

9:45
Paul Swydan: I care about it in the sense that it would be nice to be able to like the NFL, but that has become impossible. I will be done with the NFL and football in general when Brady and Belichick retire.

The suspension won’t impact the 2015 Patriots. They’ll still make the playoffs and still be the team to beat once they get there.

9:46
Comment From Clark Waveland
My fantasy season hinges on Kershaw stopping this “mere mortal” nonsense and resuming his rightful place atop Mount Olympus.

9:46
Paul Swydan: I think you’ll be OK.

9:46
Comment From Will
I would argue that being scared is throwing off his pitch recognition. He takes everything inside and chases every off-speed pitch thrown on the outer half of the plate. It’s as if he’s conceded the inside half of the plate.

9:46
Paul Swydan: Hmmm

9:47
Paul Swydan: Here’s his swing % for 2014:

http://www.fangraphs.com/zo…

9:47
Paul Swydan: And here’s 2015:

http://www.fangraphs.com/zo…

And…you may be on to something here Will. He’s not swinging at those inside pitches with the same frequency.

9:48
Paul Swydan: Well, at least not at the top of the zone.

9:48
Paul Swydan: Top of the zone, inside, I should say.

9:49
Comment From Flop Kermulligan
“Noah! Welcome to the club. Here’s your complimentary Mets t-shirt, cupholder, and pencils. Oh, don’t forget your customary total lack of run support!”

9:49
Paul Swydan: And a Chris Coghlan home run just now, yey!

9:49
Comment From Jake the Snake
Would you take Ellsbury and Pap for Max if you had a staff of Kershaw, Shelby Miller, Rodon, Thor, Nelson and Fernandez on the DL?

9:49
Paul Swydan: Ehhhhhh, maybe. Leaning no. Who’s your outfield?

9:50
Comment From Sir Boinksalot
Do you feel that the majority of NFL fans are shameless honks and yahoos? There’s a wide discrepancy from an informed baseball fan and an informed NFL fan imo.

9:50
Paul Swydan: Oh absolutely.

9:50
Comment From francis
Maybe Phil Jackson is a poor example. But Thibodeau was a “brilliant innovator” and destined for greatness before Rose got hurt., now he can’t get out of the second round. Scotty Brooks got fired once Durant went down, and Erik Spoelstra …

9:52
Paul Swydan: Yeah, look, you still need your best player to play. These guys can’t make magic. That’s just a simple fact of having a much smaller roster. Lose any one rotation guy and it’s going to hurt more than it would in baseball. There’s not as much freely available talent in basketball, and trades are harder to come by as well. But the coaches are still important.

9:52
Paul Swydan: And that’ll do it for Thor. 5.1 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 4 BB, 6 K, 1 HR. Meh. Not bad, could have been worse. Kept his team in the game, but 103 pitches in 5.1 IP is not great.

9:53
Comment From Will
I’ve seen pitchers series after series bust Stanton inside (or not even really brush him off the plate, just pour in a fastball on the inner half) on the first pitch and then immediately attack the outer half, and more specifically the outer third, of the plate. My guess is that he isn’t seeing the inside pitches that he loves to turn on as well and is swinging more at pitches outside to compensate. It’s excruciatingly frustrating because I can’t understand why the coaches haven’t corrected this.

9:54
Paul Swydan: Well, let’s not assume that they’re not noticing. They may be noticing and working with him on it every day, and we wouldn’t necessarily know. To pull a Bryan Price, how does it benefit the Marlins to talk about how Stanton is scared of inside pitches?

9:55
Comment From francis
Your prob right about the NBA, besides this is an MLB chat. Just caught the tail of the Cavs game and thought about the Thibodeau hype.

9:55
Paul Swydan: Fair enough.

9:55
Comment From francis
Alex Torres needs to go full Abe Lincoln with that cap protector.

9:55
Paul Swydan: His cap protector is something I could absolutely see my dad wearing. I’m not sure if that’s an insult or not.

9:56
Comment From Bernie
Thor had to throw more pitches because Murph is a lollygagger

9:56
Paul Swydan: Well, he better get used to that, eh?

9:56
Comment From John
I love all the chats, but what happened to sporer? i thought he was going to be doing a weekend chat?

9:57
Paul Swydan: I dunno, that’s an Eno question. But I put it here on the off-chance that Paul reads this.

9:57
Paul Swydan: Or a Paul question, to be honest. He’s his own man.

9:57
Comment From Guest
When will Masterson be moved to the bullpen? He could be good there if his velocity ticks up a bit there.

9:57
Paul Swydan: Probably won’t be long.

9:58
Comment From Rated Rookie
Carlos Carrasco seems to be giving up a lot of hits. Is that on him or the craptastic defense playing behind him?

9:59
Paul Swydan: I mean, he’s traded a few ground balls for a few line drives, but I’m inclined to put it on the defense.

10:00
Comment From Rated Rookie
How many games do you think Rendon actually plays in this year?

10:01
Paul Swydan: This is more of a Jeff question, but the one thing to note is that Rendon had some injury problems before he was drafted. So I’m not too optimistic.

10:01
Comment From Rated Rookie
Sorry I’ve been away from the chats. On the plus side, I finished and defended my dissertation. Now I can watch baseball without feeling guilty!

10:01
Paul Swydan: Wow, congrats on that! I haven’t done anything remotely that cool lately.

10:02
Paul Swydan: Or ever, really.

10:02
Comment From John
congrats rated rookie

10:02
Comment From Rated Rookie
You get to write about baseball. That is cool, all the time.

10:03
Paul Swydan: I guess so! Well, right now I have to stop writing about it and go back to editing it.Thanks for hanging out, as always. Until next week!





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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The Old Professor
Guest
The Old Professor

Stanton looked terrified tonight as he launched a bomb clear out of Dodger Stadium..3rd time it’s been done in 53 years..Stargell, Piazza and Stanton