FanGraphs After Dark Chat – 6/23/15

3:55
Paul Swydan: Hi guys,

Jeff’s daughter has a sporting event that starts late tonight, so you’re stuck with just me tonight. Get your questions in and I will see promptly at 9 pm ET!

9:02
Paul Swydan: Welcome to the FanGraphs After Dark chat, where I don’t give a damn how close you sit to the field with your children.

9:02
Comment From Vic
Do you think Tazawa gets saves chances during the 2nd half of the season?

9:02
Paul Swydan: Nope.

9:02
Comment From Rusty Shackleford
Hi Paul! Maikel Franco’s month has a lot of people turning heads, particularly after his showing last night. Is it too soon to drop Josh Harrison for him? I mean, he has a 25% HR/FB.

9:03
Paul Swydan: He’s certainly having a good run here, and if you don’t need Harrison’s positional flexibility, it won’t be the worst decision ever, but by no means do I think that Franco is this good.

9:04
Comment From Vic Romano
I don’t understand the first poll question. What’s an “NBA”? Non-Bacon Appetizer? Norwegian Blizzard Apparel? Nitrous-Based Apothecary?

9:04
Paul Swydan: It’s actually Nitrous-Based Apparel.

9:04
Comment From Vic Romano
If the vote was today — Bryant or Pederson for the NL ROY?

9:06
Paul Swydan: http://www.fangraphs.com/le…

WAR says it’s Pederson, and by a healthy 1 WAR margin. Price Bryant may pay for his team being a bunch of skinflints.

9:06
Comment From Who_Is_Zorbist?
Kevin Kiermaier has played 1339 innings ( /9=148 games) and has exactly 600 PA. He has a career 113 wRC+, and 6.7 fWAR. He’s stealing bags this year (8 of 9), and followed up an unsustainable .188 ISO with a .166 ISO. Is he a superstar that no one has heard of, or just 2 consecutive years of flukiness?

9:07
Paul Swydan: I don’t think I’m ready to call him a superstar. If he ends up with another 4 WAR this year, we can have that conversation later, but just because he put up 4 WAR last year doesn’t mean we can expect him to have a 6-7 WAR season this year.

9:08
Comment From Pale Hose
I read Cistulli’s book over vacation. Now I am uncomfortable and confused.

9:08
Paul Swydan: I have yet to take the plunge. When I first started at FanGraphs, he promised he’d send me a copy and then never did. Pretty Cistulli-ian of him, I realize, but I guess I’m still holding out hope he’ll send me one.

9:09
Comment From First Time Poster
6×6 (OBP and SLG) 12-team league. I have Gardner, Puig, Heyward, and Pederson for my 4 OF spots and have Ells on the DL. Is it acceptable to drop Yelich for Kang? (my MI is Odor, Holt, and Semian).

9:09
Paul Swydan: It’s acceptable, though I can’t believe Kang is on the wire in a 12-team league.

9:09
Paul Swydan: To be honest though, I would drop Heyward. Yelich has been coming on lately.

9:10
Comment From Aunt Jessie
Do you make anything of all the blowouts last week in interleague play?

9:10
Paul Swydan: No, just that it’s getting warmer.

9:10
Comment From First Time Poster
Toronto closer situation? They have blown like… 11 saves this season. See them making a move or sticking with Osuna/Deleabr?

9:10
Paul Swydan: I think it’ll end up being Osuna, but Delabar has a chance to lock it down for a month or two, and that bears watching.

9:11
Comment From Los
I’m offended by the lack of Jeff Locke vs Josh Smith for best pitched game.

9:12
Paul Swydan: Well, a lot of it is based on the quality of teams too. Also, you’re just kidding, right?

9:12
Comment From Owen s.
What are your thoughts on how the royals are breaking Sal Perez. While I normally have a tough time garnering sympathy for a multi-millionaire, I do feel bad that they are running him into the ground so much so that he may not be able to sign a Martin/McCann type contact when he’s a FA. Do you think his agent, or maybe even MLB should step in?

9:13
Paul Swydan: I think he probably has enough clout/trust with Ned Yost at this point to let him know if he wasn’t up to the workload. If he is buckling underneath it but isn’t saying anything, then that’s on him for not piping up.

9:13
Comment From Who_Is_Zorbist?I
Matt Moore returns next week. If his velocity returns to 2011,2012 numbers,can you see him as one of the game’s best, or does his BB rate make that #1 overall prospect ranking moot?

9:14
Paul Swydan: I mean, he’s never been one of the game’s best before, so I would never expect that. As you say, the walk rate is borderline prohibitive. He’s still a good pitcher, just not a great one.

9:14
Comment From Sully
why is joe freaking kelly still in a starting rotation???

9:14
Paul Swydan: Apathy.

9:14
Comment From Michael
Red Sox optioned their 3rd-best starting pitcher to AAA today. Let the tanking commence!

9:15
Paul Swydan: The thing that gets me is that Farrell admitted it had nothing to do with how he pitched. He shouldn’t have done that. Agents clip those quotes for arbitration hearings. And the team shouldn’t have demoted him. It’s time for Craig Breslow to go.

9:16
Comment From a eskpert
You can sign either the blazingest blazing flamethrower that ever did miss the strike zone: Steve Dalkowski or, the tooliest toolsy athlete that ever did hit batting practice home runs and make cannon throws to home: Bo Jackso

9:16
Paul Swydan: Well, by nature, you want to take the position player, especially since you told me it was Bo Jackson.

The more interesting question is do you take the guy with the blazingiest blazing fastball and nothing else or the guy with the filthiest filthy curve/slider and nothing else?

9:17
Comment From Black Magic Man
Am I the only one seeing Carlos Santana with a power outage?

9:17
Paul Swydan: Just an outage in general. There are few players today who are more frustrating.

9:17
Comment From Cory Andersons Fake Dad
Why isn’t anyone talking about how great Cory Anderson pitched for the Tribe on Sunday?

9:17
Comment From Cory Andersons Fake Dad
I think because I keep calling Cody Anderson, Cory. That must be his brother.

9:19
Paul Swydan: Well for me it’s because I had never heard of him before Sunday.

9:19
Paul Swydan: Also, it was against the hitting-poor Rays. We’ll see how he does against better hitting teams.

9:20
Comment From Frank
What’s a realistic trade look like for Papelbon. I don’t get reports that say the Phillies would send him plus almost all his money for a mid level prospect. He’s pretty good, so if you turn him into a no cost closer for a team by eating money, how do you not get a top 5 prospect or two top guys somewhere in 8-20 range? Is it unreasonable to think that the Blue Jays would sacrifice Pentecost/Dejong or Reid Foley/Alford if the Phillies are eating like 15 million.

9:20
Paul Swydan: Without getting into specific players, I think it’s completely unrealistic to expect a top-five prospect in someone’s system for Papelbon. I think that’s why the Blue Jays are said to be looking at K Rod instead.

9:21
Comment From Who_Is_Zorbist?I
Joey Butler!!! Where the heck did this guy come from. Is he AL ROY thus far?

9:22
Paul Swydan: He’s in the mix, but given his lack of pub before the season and internet darlings Souza and Burns also in the mix, I would think at this juncture that Butler has a long road ahead of him.

http://www.fangraphs.com/le…

9:22
Comment From Who_Is_Zorbist?I
Even with the Rays in it, should they deal McGee? Chapman and Papelbon are the only great relievers on the market. If a top 100 prospect became available, should the Rays do it, and rely on Box, Jepsen, Romero (LHP), Geltz, Colome (headed to pen eventually). They have plenty of relief pitching.

9:22
Paul Swydan: That’d probably be a tough sell in the team’s clubhouse, so I wouldn’t count on that happening.

9:23
Comment From Simon+McPherson
Due to the (presumably) diminished role of PEDs, supplements, etc, I’ve heard a lot of chat about players aging more in line with historical trends; players are hitting significant regression at 31/32 rather than having their careers extended well into their 30’s. Is there statistical evidence for this?

9:23
Paul Swydan: Haven’t thought to look into that, but I would bet against it.

9:24
Comment From Vic Romano
I get the feeling that the Cubs are going to hang a crooked number on Greinke before long. They’ve been clogging up the bases all game.

9:24
Paul Swydan: That question came in 15 minutes ago. Hasn’t happened yet, but Vic gets props if it does!

9:25
Comment From Grandpaboy
Schwarber + Alcantara + Kyle Hendricks for Cole Hamels…who hangs up?

9:25
Paul Swydan: Probably no one hangs up right away. I’m sure the Cubs would prefer to move Baez though.

9:25
Comment From Quacktastic
In a keep-forever league without costs or penalties for keepers….which of these three CF’s would you be most willing to part with – Betts, Pederson, or Buxton?

9:26
Paul Swydan: If you’re asking me to judge right this second? Buxton. Unless it’s a batting average league, in which case you have a good case for parting with Pederson.

9:26
Comment From Gary
Is this the true AJ Pollock? As in, can we expect this type of output each season moving forward?

9:27
Paul Swydan: I think so, or similar to it. I wrote about Pollock recently. I like him a lot:

http://www.fangraphs.com/bl…

9:27
Comment From Peter
Of the trade offers that you receive, what percentage are other owners trying to unload their spare parts/crap on you for some of your best players? I am running in the 90 – 95% range.

9:28
Paul Swydan: Definitely lower than that, but then I’m down to two leagues. I’ve been in one for roughly 15 years, so we all know each other pretty well at this point. The other is FanGraphs staff or former staff, so we know not to try and make junky offers. I guess I’m lucky.

9:29
Comment From Frank
Follow up on papelbon: I don’t quite see why the Phillies would eat upwards of 10 mil to trade papelbon if they aren’t getting a worthy prospect back. I know the diamondbacks are crazy, but Atlanta just bought an elite prospect for 10 million and gave up a way less impactful player in the process. If the Phillies can’t even sniff a legit prospect, wouldn’t it be foolish not to wait until next year for the same level of prospect without eating money? By all accounts his fellow bullpen mates love him, so what the hell?

9:30
Paul Swydan: You do the deal now because you have more leverage now. In the offseason, no one is desperate to acquire a reliever. And not getting the best prospect ever is not a good reason to hang on to a guy who is superfluous on the Phillies.

9:30
Comment From Captain Squirrel
In a standard ESPN 5×5 league, if you were guaranteed the first 7 picks of the draft, then everyone else completed the draft (with you having no more picks), then you completing your roster off the waiver wire remains, do you think you would win that league? Normal rules apply rest of season.

9:31
Paul Swydan: Yes, I think I win that league.

9:31
Comment From Jagger.
Do you think Bean might even think about trading Gray?

9:32
Paul Swydan: I think he’s probably more worried about his inclusion initiatives that he’s spearheading throughout the game.

Billy Beane probably wouldn’t consider trading Gray though.

9:32
Comment From Gary
What do the Mets need to do in order to truly contend for the division/wild card? In this scenario we cannot simply get rid of the Wilpons.

9:33
Paul Swydan: Figure out how to keep Wright and d’Arnaud healthy, find a starting second baseman who can hit AND field, go back in time and not do the Michael Cuddyer deal.

9:34
Paul Swydan: And then find a good left fielder.

9:34
Comment From Cage
Thoughts on Teheran? Last start a sign of a turnaround or just picking on the fugal Mets offense?

9:35
Paul Swydan: Going to lean Mets on this one.

9:35
Comment From Gary
Completely unrealistic trade call: Syndergaard, Nimmo, Herrera and Wheeler for Sale. Who hangs up?

9:35
Paul Swydan: Probably the White Sox.

9:35
Comment From Gary
I don’t quite like being a Met fan anymore.

9:35
Paul Swydan: I would blame you if I could.

9:36
Comment From Captain Squirrel
Ok, followup to my question about the guaranteed picks at start of a fantasy league. What’s the lowest number of picks at the start of the league and then no more til the end you think could win with? 4? 5?

9:36
Paul Swydan: I think you hit the nail on the head with 7. 5 position players and 2 pitchers. Maybe you could do 6, but I think I would only be comfortable with 7.

9:36
Comment From Cage
Sometimes I want to say I don’t quite like being a Red Sox fan anymore, but then I remember we won the title two years ago. Good times. Good times.

9:36
Paul Swydan: For sure. Three titles in a decade. No reason to complain too loudly.

9:37
Comment From Jeff
Cameron wrote a piece on the Whitesox possibly trading off Abreu/Sale/Quintana. If they did, what would be a realistic asking price for Quintana? Would a top 100 + a top 200 prospect be enough?

9:37
Paul Swydan: I didn’t have a chance to read Dave’s piece today. My guess is that if you’re selling off those guys and really burning it down, that you’d need more than top 100 + top 200 for Q.

9:38
Comment From Vic Romano
Well, with 90 pitches through 5 innings, it’s looking like the Cubs are going to run out of chances to light up Greinke in the very near future.

9:38
Paul Swydan: Don’t give up Vic, don’t EVER give up!

9:38
Comment From Steve
What teams do you think should go for broke and go for a short and log term solution guy like Sale or Hanels

9:39
Paul Swydan: I don’t think that any teams should really go for broke. It’s simply not a great strategy anymore, thanks to the second wild card. In a related story, I loathe the second wild card.

9:39
Comment From John
Rest of season David Ortiz or Alex Gordon?

9:39
Paul Swydan: Offensively? Ortiz. He’s heating up.

9:41
Comment From Matt
You think Joe Ross eventually ends up back in the rotation – either to replace Gio or Fister?

9:42
Paul Swydan: I wouldn’t bet on that happening for anything other than injury reasons.

9:42
Comment From Ham puffs
Do you think the Cardinals make a serious play to re-sign Heyward this offseason?

9:42
Paul Swydan: I think they will need to ***appear*** to make a serious play for him, given how well Shelby Miller has pitched this season. But ultimately, I think someone else will sign him.

9:42
Comment From Billy
What are your thoughts about Randal Grichuk? .280, 20 HR guy?

9:43
Paul Swydan: I was talking with Alan Harrison about him earlier today. I think this comes down to how much you trust the Cardinals. Statistically, he looks like an average player. But if you believe in the Cardinals, then perhaps he is Matt Carpenter v. 2.0. I don’t know that I’m willing to commit to the latter viewpoint, but it definitely wouldn’t surprise me.

9:44
Comment From Quadrangular
re: J Heyward. looks like he’s starting to come on of late. Maybe worth taking another look?

9:44
Paul Swydan: He’s back to his general career numbers offensively, which to me isn’t a very worthwhile fantasy player.

9:45
Comment From Billy
Does Grich have more power than Carp?

9:46
Paul Swydan: A) Are we really calling him Grich? There was already a Grich, and he was pretty damn good.
B) Not according to the projections, no. They’re basically the same.

http://www.fangraphs.com/pr…

9:46
Comment From Billy
Would you rather have Billy McKinney, Kennys Vargas, Danny Santana, Pete OB, Mallex Smith in a dynasty?

9:47
Paul Swydan: Peter Gammons is always raving about Billy McKinney, so I’ll trust him on this one.

9:47
Paul Swydan: I mean, he slugged .493 in Triple-A, but in the PCL that’s not all that impressive.

9:48
Paul Swydan: Grichuk, that is.

9:48
Comment From Ham puffs
Why do people always say a catcher called a good game. I regularly see pitchers shake catchers off. Isn’t it, at best a team effort between the two?

9:48
Paul Swydan: Well, the catcher is still *calling* it. If the pitcher shakes him off, the catcher calls a different pitch. Also, there are lots of pitchers who will say “I just throw what he puts down,” so I don’t think it’s always collaborative, no.

9:49
Comment From Snape
what type of player does Mazara turn out to be??

9:49
Paul Swydan: A baseball player!

9:49
Paul Swydan: Sorry, I had to.

9:50
Paul Swydan: He seems like he could be a slugger who has enough plate discipline to keep pitchers honest, which is a nice guy to have around.

9:50
Comment From Gary
Health people always say not to eat late at night. It’s 9:50 in NY. What would Dr. Swydan say?

9:51
Paul Swydan: Dr. Swydan would agree, but mainly because Dr. Swydan frequently eats late at night when he’s up editing. It’s not a great way to live. And yet I keep doing it! Yey!

9:51
Comment From Billy
Thoughts on Kennys Vargas? Does he have a high ceiling or at first base is he just so-so for the future?

9:52
Paul Swydan: I would say so-so. If you’re going to strike out that much, you need to hit the ball for power when you do hit it. Vargas is not doing that this year.

9:53
Comment From Vic Romano
Any chance the NL adopts the DH before the Cubs have to trade Vogelbach away?

9:53
Paul Swydan: I wouldn’t count on it. And if it was up to me, the DH would be banned anyway.

9:53
Comment From Who_Is_Zorbist?I
Is it fair to give a player a SB on a double steal where the other guy gets thrown out?

9:53
Paul Swydan: Absolutely. How does the other guy getting caught affect the guy who is successful?

9:54
Comment From Vic Romano
I’m not saying I like the DH. Just that Vogelbach is so very much looking like he’ll be a very good one.

9:54
Paul Swydan: Then the Cubs should trade him to the Angels.

9:55
Comment From Gary
How good would Hanley have to be at the plate in order for his atrocious defense to be acceptable?

9:55
Paul Swydan: Manny Ramirez good.

9:55
Comment From Sully
has gameday been a slow piece of crap for you this season? half the time it never even loads for me now.

9:56
Paul Swydan: I have to cop to the fact that I haven’t used the new version very much, to the point where it keeps taking me by surprise when I do.

9:56
Comment From Vic Romano
Why the Angels? Not sure what they’ve got that the Cubs need….

9:56
Paul Swydan: The Angels have had no DH production.

9:57
Comment From The Society
Traded Jose Fernandez, Mookie, Stroman, Lindor and Nola for Greinke, Cueto, and Melancon. 12 team redraft limited keeper (2 years max, 1 player for 3 years). Pairing my additions with Kershaw, Felix, and Kluber. Currently in 4th (7 points back), 2nd in offense. Tell me selling the future will be worth it. I need this!

9:58
Paul Swydan: Getting to behold a rotation of Kershaw, Felix, Kluber, Greinke and Cueto for half a season is something to behold. But you paid a steep price. Good luck!

9:58
Comment From Mr. Met
I’m not sure I understand what is happening with Steven Matz and the rotation. Are we waiting for Niese to implode?

9:59
Paul Swydan: Trying to understand the Mets is not possible.

9:59
Comment From Billy
Will there ever be a way to play fantasy baseball with defensive stats?

10:00
Paul Swydan: Well, sure, Scoresheet incorporates defense in their fantasy leagues. Given how we only update the defensive stats once a week, it’d have to be a weekly league…for now.

10:00
Paul Swydan: And I think that is going to do it for me, for now, as well. Thanks, as always, for hanging out. See you 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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Billy H
7 years ago

Thoughts on Kennys Vargas? Does he have a high ceiling or at first base is he just so-so for the future?