FanGraphs After Dark Chat – 9/3/13 by Paul Swydan September 3, 2013 6:03 Paul Swydan: Hi everybody! I will be here at 9 pm ET, maybe Jeff or Chris will be here too. And hopefully you will too! Load up the queue and I’ll see you soon! (Poll results at bottom of transcript) 9:01 Paul Swydan: Evening, folks. 9:03 Paul Swydan: In Russia, Paul wins you! 9:03 Jeff Zimmerman: Hi, just working on a poll. 9:03 Paul Swydan: For the record, Jeff did that poll. I’m not THAT full of myself … yet. 9:03 Comment From cistullishairlineWill Carson Cistulli continue to write for fangraphs from France? 9:03 Paul Swydan: In between servings of cheese, yes, he will. 9:04 Jeff Zimmerman: Yes, we can’t get rid of him that easy. 9:04 Comment From JohnWhy doesn’t FanGraphs have more data for pitchers such as wOBA, wRC, wRC+, and wRAA against? There isn’t even data for singles, doubles, & triples allowed. 9:04 Jeff Zimmerman: Some is at the team level. I think wOBA is somewhat useful 9:05 Paul Swydan: We have some of those breakdowns by pitch if you click on the Pitchf/x tab of each guy’s page. 9:05 Paul Swydan: To wit: http://www.fangraphs.com/pitchfx.aspx?playerid=4930&position=P#advanced 9:05 Paul Swydan: Also, we have wOBA allowed on the splits page: http://www.fangraphs.com/statsplits.aspx?playerid=4930&position=P&season=2013 9:06 Paul Swydan: For a guy like Lester, you can get the whole season at the bottom of that grouping, where it says “As Starter.” For others, it will be broken up. 9:06 Paul Swydan: I guess the better question is why it isn’t on the leaderboards, and the answer to that, like most things, is because we haven’t cloned Appelman yet. 9:07 Jeff Zimmerman: When are we going to get around to that? 9:07 Paul Swydan: If you could see the list of new stats that Cameron has on his to-do list for Appelman, it would a) make you smile and b) feel bad for Appelman. 9:07 Comment From JaackThe Angels might drop the ‘of Anaheim’ from their name. Is it bad that I have come to love it so? 9:08 Paul Swydan: What’s bad is that they could drop it and no one would care, even though they literally play in a different county. 9:08 Jeff Zimmerman: It was stupid and now cool. 9:09 Comment From Gila MonsterWith Bartolo Colon arm’s officially falling off, what are the chances Anderson makes it back into the rotation by mid September? I mean, his control has been bad, but the GB% is sexy….And his K% was up. 9:09 Paul Swydan: I don’t think it matters. Even if he makes a couple of spot starts, it’d be hard to see him starting if and when the A’s find their way to the LDS. 9:09 Jeff Zimmerman: Anderson will not start. 9:10 Comment From Milhousetrust doug fister ROS for QS’s? 9:10 Paul Swydan: I have all year, so … yes. 9:10 Jeff Zimmerman: Yes, he has been looking better recently. 9:11 Comment From RicerOver or under on Mike Trout finishing at or over 10.5 WAR? 9:11 Paul Swydan: He is at 9.3 right now. I’ll take the under. But it might be close. 9:11 Jeff Zimmerman: Damn close, I will go over. 9:12 Comment From AJTAs a new person living in the Boston area, are there any particular things I should see at some time? 9:12 Paul Swydan: You mean besides Fenway Park? 9:12 Comment From TheoWhen you look at player’s splits, where do you place most emphasis? Home-road? Left-right? Or do you go deeper & look at home v. righty, home v. lefty, road v. righty, etc? 9:13 Jeff Zimmerman: Left vs Right for batters and pitchers, Results with runners on base for pitchers. I need to use monthly splits to look at changes. 9:13 Paul Swydan: I don’t think I have a universal thing that I look for in any player. I will look at left/right on a lot of guys, but I don’t take it as gospel. Look at Jonny Gomes this year. Given the low sample, they will fluctuate. 9:14 Paul Swydan: Yeah, I also like monthly splits, and I guess I did badger Appelman for a good year to get 1st half and 2nd half splits. 9:14 Paul Swydan: But again, these things are more descriptive than they are predictive. Todd Helton being good in August in the past guarantees nothing about Todd Helton being always good in August. 9:14 Comment From JohnCan I see the list of new stats that cameron has on his to-do list for Appelman? 9:15 Jeff Zimmerman: Correct, I used them alot with injury analysis 9:15 Jeff Zimmerman: Paul? 9:15 Paul Swydan: Not even I know all of them. I should have stats things by the way. Didn’t mean they were all actual stats. 9:15 Paul Swydan: I think the only one that has been promised to us is P/PA. 9:15 Paul Swydan: We really need that one. I hate looking for it on B-Ref. 9:16 Comment From Cape CodIs Mark Reynolds a reasonable comp for Will Middlebrooks? Is the sample size too small to be concerned about Middlebrooks’ UZR/150 of a negative 12.0 this year? 9:16 Paul Swydan: I think the sample is too small, yes. Middlebrooks, anecdotally at least, was pretty good with the leather last year. 9:17 Jeff Zimmerman: I would say better from what little I have seen of him. 9:17 Comment From PaulWhat are your thoughts on Wainwright’s recent struggles? Just a blip or do they portend something more serious? 9:18 Paul Swydan: I just think that Wainwright was not really as good as he pitched in the first half. 9:18 Paul Swydan: I mean, he’s basically having the best year of his career right now, even after coming back down a little. I wouldn’t be too worried. Just don’t expect the moon every time out. 9:19 Jeff Zimmerman: Blip IMO, most of the problems are BABIP driven. I looked at his injury data and he is looking healthier (higher velocity and Zone%) than earlier in the season. 9:19 Comment From Shark MapiroDo the Indians pick up their half of Ubaldo’s $8mil mutual option, or would that money be better spent elsewhere? 9:20 Jeff Zimmerman: Hopefully better elsewhere. 9:20 Paul Swydan: I think that whether or not it would be better spent elsewhere that I would not pick up the option. Masterson, Kluber, Salazar, McAllister, X. And X could be Kazmir, assuming they can re-sign him to a relatively decent deal. Seems to leave little room for Ubaldo. 9:20 Comment From RyanWhere does Justin Morneau land this off-season? And what kind of contract will he get? 9:21 Paul Swydan: Wouldn’t predict a landing spot, but I sure as hell wouldn’t be offering him a major league contract. 9:21 Jeff Zimmerman: He feels like a Giant to me with a 2 year contract. Someone will way over pay. 9:22 Comment From zackWhat was your take on the Rays terrible person line up this weekend? It had Josh Lueke (sex offender), Yunel Escobar (Homophobe), Luke Scott (paranoid racist and birther), plus Delmon (drunken anti semite)? 9:23 Jeff Zimmerman: At least they are not hanging around my neighborhood. 9:24 Paul Swydan: I guess my main thought is that you could make a whole lineup like this for every team if players on those teams were dumb enough to speak openly. The only one I really take issue with is Lueke. I just don’t see myself ever rooting for a guy like that. Still though, Brett Myers lasted in this league a loooonng time, so we shouldn’t be surprised by Lueke’s ascendance either. 9:24 Jeff Zimmerman: At least they are playing the Angels tonight, Hamilton and Pujols can save them. 9:24 Comment From zackWill Jay Bruce hit around .270/3.25/.500 until hell freezes over? 9:24 Paul Swydan: I’m pretty sure he’ll hit for that even after hell freezes over. 9:25 Jeff Zimmerman: Talk about an OBP 9:25 Comment From Gila MonsterCan we have a David Appelman chat sometime? I feel like the man who calls the shots is quit isolated from the Fangraphs community? 9:26 Paul Swydan: We call him The Dark Overlord for a reason. He kind of hangs back, but he sees everything that is going on. 9:26 Jeff Zimmerman: He has showed up a few times. 9:26 Comment From Meano EnoVICTORINO LEFT HANDED BATTING ALERT 9:26 Paul Swydan: Huh. 9:26 Jeff Zimmerman: Oh no Paul. 9:27 Paul Swydan: Interesting. 9:27 Paul Swydan: Wonder if Eck is right, that he was tired of Scherzer’s slider. 9:27 Paul Swydan: And then he swings at the first pitch. Ayayaya. 9:27 Comment From zackIf I told you before the season that Marlin Byrd was going to be playing a pivotal role in the NL central race in September your response would have been….. 9:28 Paul Swydan: I don’t know. I can tell you that I made a good number of jokes at Byrd’s expense this spring though when Terry Collins announced he was going to see significant playing time. So I guess the joke was on me. 9:28 Jeff Zimmerman: which player(s) in the Central did he convince to take PEDs. 9:29 Comment From 24601Pirates have activated Grilli – Do I leave him on the DL for now to see how he looks coming back to toss out Heath Bell or Hawkins now. 9:29 Paul Swydan: I read they are not making him the closer right away, so you’re probably safe to leave him on the DL for a couple of days. 9:29 Jeff Zimmerman: I would see if he even pitches. The Pirates may not have a team in the minors still playing. 9:30 Comment From zackIs Michael Young a downgrade relative to Juan Uribe? 9:30 Paul Swydan: They do different things. Defensively, yeah, I’d rather have Uribe out there. 9:31 Jeff Zimmerman: Like Paul said, different skill sets, Young could be an OK PH 9:32 Comment From Meano EnoLester! Lester! Lester! 9:32 Paul Swydan: Not too shabby, eh? 9:32 Comment From Gila MonsterIf Miggy was a league average 3rd baseman defensively, what would his WAR be? What if he was an above average first basemen/corner outfielder? 9:33 Paul Swydan: As for the latter question, I don’t think Cabrera will ever be above average defensively at any position. As for the first part, that’s a better question for Jeff. 9:34 Jeff Zimmerman: He would gain about 1.5 WAR for being a league average 3B. 9:34 Paul Swydan: Well there you go. 9:35 Paul Swydan: So essentially it would pull him even with Trout. 9:35 Comment From RolexWill Hamilton have an OPS of at least .800 next year? 9:35 Jeff Zimmerman: If he was above average at 1B, his value would be close to it right now. 1B is pretty easy to play. His value would sky rocket if he was above average in the OF 9:35 Paul Swydan: I’m not holding my breath. On either of those things. 9:35 Jeff Zimmerman: Yes, probably. I think the Angels need to and will find a way to make him productive. 9:36 Paul Swydan: If they fire Scioscia. If not, then don’t hold your breath. 9:37 Paul Swydan: I’m always amazed that Scioscia isn’t derided the same way Dusty Baker is. Scioscia is a moron. 9:37 Jeff Zimmerman: Agree, Stark wrote a good article on Hamilton within the last week. 9:37 Comment From RolexCan the Phillies have a dominant rotation again next year? With Miguel Gonzalez? 9:38 Jeff Zimmerman: No, may too many iffs. 9:38 Paul Swydan: Well I suppose they could be dominant again next year, but I would pin my hopes for that on Halladay and not Gonzalez. I’m personally not expecting anything from Gonzalez for next season. 9:38 Comment From JaackScioscia has a ring and was really awesome on the Simpsons. Dusty Baker just took a chainsaw to Jim Brower’s arm. That is why people don’t deride Scioscia as much. 9:39 Paul Swydan: Sure, that’s why. 9:40 Comment From Chase UtleyWill I ever hit above .300 in a season again? While playing at least 100 games? 9:40 Paul Swydan: I would never again expect you to play in 100 games in a season. But it definitely could happen. With the right painkillers, anything is possible. 9:40 Jeff Zimmerman: No, maybe the 100 games every other year. 9:41 Comment From PrichHow active do you think teams like the Dodgers and Phillies will be this winter in trying to shed okay players with horrible salaries (Crawford/Ethier/Papelbon/Howard)..? 9:41 Jeff Zimmerman: I don’t think either care, maybe they could trade with each other. 9:42 Paul Swydan: I think the Dodgers’ aggressiveness will boil down to whether or not they sign Cano. If they sign Cano, I would expect them to be very aggressive in trying to move one of Crawford/Ethier. I don’t think the Phillies care. 9:42 Comment From zackI could totally see the phillies going after Ethier. He seems like a perfect fit for their roster with his inability to hit lefties and bloated, long term contract. 9:43 Comment From JaackDodgers will trade for Ryan Howard to play second base, sign Cano to DH in interleague play. 9:43 Paul Swydan: Ethier and Mayberry might actually be a decent platoon. 9:43 Comment From BipRobertsIt’s playoff time in a holds league. Which of the following do you think more useful ROS – Hoover? Herrera? Kintzler? Santos? Thanx! 9:44 Paul Swydan: Hoover and then Herrera. There was a month (May?) where Hoover actually had more saves than Chapman. Dusty has gone to him in important spots all year, is what I’m trying to say. 9:44 Jeff Zimmerman: None. 9:45 Comment From shanewill selig go away after 2014, and who replaces him? 9:45 Paul Swydan: If someone offered you the opportunity to be paid $25 million a year and access to your own private jet so that you didn’t have to work in NYC but could get there and leave as you please, would you retire? 9:46 Paul Swydan: I know I sure as hell wouldn’t. 9:46 Jeff Zimmerman: Selig is a lich, he will never go away. 9:46 Comment From Gila MonsterJoe Torre should lead a coup vs. Selig. 9:46 Jeff Zimmerman: Paul goes with Hoover, ok. Herrera has been OK, but not really get the good hold chances. Take Coleman instead. 9:46 Paul Swydan: Not sure we’d be any better off with Torre. 9:47 Paul Swydan: As for holds, I don’t know holds all that well, but Alex Torres has been on fire for a while now. Also, Paco Rodriguez. 9:47 Jeff Zimmerman: The game needs at least someone in charge who has sent an email. 9:47 Comment From JaackScott Boras should lead a coup vs Selig and Torre. 9:47 Paul Swydan: That’d be progress, most likely. 9:48 Jeff Zimmerman: Sorry Paul, the holds answers went into the queue for a couple of minutes before posting. 9:48 Paul Swydan: Jim Leyland trying to ruin Scherzer right now. 9:48 Paul Swydan: No worries! 9:49 Comment From PaulWhat do you make of Avisail Garcia? Is he worthy of his nickname? 9:49 Jeff Zimmerman: I like him as a 3rd Out fielder. 9:49 Paul Swydan: The baby Miguel Cabrera nickname? No, because Avisail looks more like baby Jay Bruce in terms of approach. Also, because don’t compare prospects to Miguel Cabrera. That’s dumb. But I think he could be a pretty decent player. 9:50 Comment From PrichKyle Seager: Good at Baseball? 9:50 Paul Swydan: I think so! 9:50 Jeff Zimmerman: Yea, definitely. 9:51 Comment From zackMore likely to remain alive: Hosmer or Smoak? 9:51 Jeff Zimmerman: Both. 9:51 Paul Swydan: Uh, hopefully both of them? 9:51 Paul Swydan: I mean, I’m cynical, but I don’t think we want to start predicting when people will die. 9:51 Comment From zackAlphonso Soriano has rated as the best defensive outfielder in baseball for a half decade. Never underestimate the craziness of defensive metrics 9:53 Paul Swydan: Bradley Woodrum had a good piece on Soriano’s D in last year’s THT Annual. Soriano basically said that until he got to the Cubs, no one had ever actually taught him how to play outfield defense. They just gave him a glove and let him run wild and free. 9:53 Paul Swydan: Not saying that the numbers are 100% accurate or anything, but I definitely found that interesting. 9:53 Jeff Zimmerman: Looking up the data. Will comment in a bit. 9:54 Comment From RyanBilly Hamilton tonight picked up his first of ____ SBs for his career? 9:55 Paul Swydan: Less than 200? Not sold on Hamilton as an every day player. He seems more likely to be the poor man’s Rajai Davis. 9:55 Paul Swydan: Which is just fine. I love Rajai Davis. 9:55 Jeff Zimmerman: 400, I think he will have problems stealing 1B 9:56 Comment From Meano EnoNESN is interviewing the pizza thrower. New low? 9:56 Paul Swydan: Not sure NESN can sink lower than that stupid dating game show they concocted a couple of years ago. 9:57 Jeff Zimmerman: I don’t even see Soriano in the top 30 defensive OF over the past 5 seasons: http://www.fangraphs.com/leaders.aspx?pos=of&stats=bat&lg=all&qual=y&type=6&season=2013&month=0&season1=2009&ind=0&team=0&rost=0&age=0&filter=&players=0&sort=8,d 9:57 Paul Swydan: In case you’re not familiar: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sox_Appeal 9:57 Jeff Zimmerman: He comes in at #58 9:58 Comment From JonPaul, are you watching the Red Sox game? Have you heard about the Pizza Chucker before? Because I sure haven’t and it’s hilarious 9:58 Paul Swydan: Yeah yeah. It happened a couple of years ago. It’s overblown at this point. 9:58 Comment From JaackSoriano was a really bitching defender in 07 and 08, but has been only decent since. 9:59 Comment From PrichDustin Ackley: Doesn’t suck at Major League Baseball..? 10:00 Paul Swydan: Well, his full season stats are the same as last year, but his second half 133 wRC+ is mighty promising. 10:00 Jeff Zimmerman: He is show some signs of being a MLB player. I could see him moved this offseason. 10:01 Paul Swydan: That would be an appropriately aggressive move by the M’s. I’ll be surprised if it happens though. 10:02 Jeff Zimmerman: They have 3 OK-ish MI, move the one with the least amount of team control for other needs. The M’s have plenty of needs. 10:02 Paul Swydan: But YOU won’t be surprised to know that we are going to put this chat in the bag. Thanks very much for hanging out with us tonight. Same time next week? Oh, and sorry AJT, I am not hip and with it like I used to be. All I would say is check out the Boston Gardens/Common. Lame, I know. 10:03 Jeff Zimmerman: See everyone next week.