Jeff Sullivan FanGraphs Chat — 11/4/14

9:05
Jeff Sullivan: Time for baseball chat

9:05
Jeff Sullivan: Live on your internet

9:06
Jeff Sullivan: If you want to deceive yourself, this is technically a postseason baseball chat, or a preseason baseball chat

9:07
Comment From Bret
Hi Jeff – is there a reasonable value of X for the Jays that you think would balance this equation: JA Happ + X = Howie Kendrick?

9:08
Jeff Sullivan: Happ, rather obviously, is worth less than Kendrick; Happ, rather obviously, is also due less salary than Kendrick. Because Kendrick has just the one year left, he can’t pull back a whole lot in a deal, so in this particular proposal you’d be looking at something like a B prospect most likely

9:09
Jeff Sullivan: Now, I’m not sure whether the Angels would go for that — Kendrick will be in demand and they might be able to find a young big-leaguer with years of team control. But the Jays definitely have what would be necessary

9:09
Comment From Caballo
What happens to Pedro Alvarez? Can he turn himself into the next Edwin Encarnacion?

9:11
Jeff Sullivan: You always bet against a player who is not very good turning into a player who is very good. Encarnacion strikes out like half as often as Alvarez does. But I know that’s not really your question, specifically

9:12
Jeff Sullivan: When you look at what Alvarez is going to cost through arbitration, and when you look at what, say, Josh Harrison and Ike Davis can do, Alvarez looks like a difficult continued fit in Pittsburgh. The problem is that his trade value is down coming off of, you know, what happened, but no one in the game doubts his power ability so if the Pirates feel like moving Alvarez a market would certainly develop

9:12
Jeff Sullivan: He’s a really interesting project, but he might be getting too expensive for the team that he’s on

9:12
Comment From Billy Butler
I’ve heard they play baseball in Seattle

9:13
Jeff Sullivan: Just resumed last year after like a decade-long hiatus

9:13
Comment From Guest
I’ll admit ti was only a casual comp, using Fangraphs comp feature, but Torii Hunter and Delmon Young had mostly similar seasons in 2014. Be interesting to see what the market says about that comp.

9:14
Jeff Sullivan: You could say this: Steamer projects Hunter for a 111 wRC+. Young, 98

9:14
Jeff Sullivan: Young continues to survive on one-year contracts. Somehow he’s still just 29. Hunter will also get a one-year contract but I presume his will be worth some more millions

9:15
Comment From kevinthecomic
Does Michael Cuddyer become the first ever player to accept a QO?

9:15
Jeff Sullivan: Odds-on favorite, although Robertson is a challenger

9:15
Comment From Guest
Do you give the M’s any shot at signing Tomas?

9:15
Jeff Sullivan: Some, absolutely, but my brain keeps saying Phillies

9:15
Comment From Forsyth
Hi Jeff – I saw Steamer’s projection of Mookie Betts dropped his GP from around 150 to 97. Is there any reason why the projection would drop his games by so much?

9:16
Jeff Sullivan: That wasn’t a Steamer adjustment, that was a FanGraphs depth chart adjustment. The latter is up to us; the former is up to a set of equations

9:16
Comment From Derek
at 15.3 M Cuddyer needs to be worth what? 2.5 Wins? Projected at .9 WAR, what the hell are the Rockies doing??

9:18
Jeff Sullivan: About two wins or so. Over the last four years, Cuddyer has averaged roughly 2.5 WAR per 600 PA. Now obviously, he’s older than he’s ever been, and you can’t discount the Steamer projection, but the Rockies presumably love what Cuddyer has done, and I think they think 2014 was mostly tanked by injuries so maybe keeping the band together can allow them to make a 2015 run of some decency. Also, they now have some flexibility to move an excess outfielder in a trade for something else

9:18
Jeff Sullivan: The Rockies aren’t going to have a lot of luck luring free agents to Colorado, so it would be smart for them to focus more on trade channels

9:19
Comment From Guest
Are expectations for the 2015 cubs being set too high? I don

9:20
Jeff Sullivan: The Cubs should be pretty good if they put together the offseason they expect. I don’t think the expectations of that hypothetical Cubs roster are too high. However, I think the expectations might be too high regarding the likelihood of the Cubs having such an offseason. It’s probably not really a given that they land a Lester or a Scherzer or a Zimmermann or whatever. These are great pitchers, who lots of teams will want. Sometimes interested teams get shut out.

9:21
Comment From Alex
Is it unfair to still question the age of latin american players? I have serious doubts that Panda who has regressed for 3 straight years is 28.

9:21
Jeff Sullivan: Sandoval’s been the exact same player three years in a row

9:21
Jeff Sullivan: Like, the exact same

9:22
Comment From BrewGa
Could you see the Brewers in on any particular free agents this offseason?

9:23
Jeff Sullivan: There’s really not a ton for them to do, barring trades that shake the roster up. I could see the pursuit of a handful of role players but I don’t see something impactful on the way

9:23
Comment From a preseasoner
which high risk high reward starting pitcher should the Ms sign?

9:23
Jeff Sullivan: #BrandonMcCarthy

9:23
Comment From Cristal
When is something going to happen??? I’m starting to freak out!

9:23
Jeff Sullivan: You mean like the trade over the weekend of two established big-leaguers? Or the Cubs giving $25 million to maybe the best manager in the sport?

9:24
Comment From Billy
Will the Dodgers free Joc and give him 500 MLB ABs next year? Should I even be that excited about what he’d give?

9:24
Jeff Sullivan: All about how easily Friedman can clear Kemp and Ethier. Ethier’s going to require a hell of a lot of work, but Kemp would be a pretty easy sell assuming the Dodgers eat some money

9:25
Comment From Billy
Will Buxton/Sano start in AA no matter how Spring Training goes, or could they start at AAA with a good spring?

9:26
Jeff Sullivan: I’m assuming Double-A for both. Buxton has all of three plate appearances at the level. They’ll probably be more willing to be aggressive with Sano, but I see Double-A stints until they push their way up, which might not take more than a few weeks

9:26
Comment From Cody
Is it reasonable to believe that the Royals make a move that makes them better next year?

9:27
Jeff Sullivan: Better than what? Better than what they were in 2014? That depends how you evaluate what they actually were. But the Royals are going to have maybe $20 million of payroll flexibility to move around, on top of losing Shields/Butler, so yeah, they can solidify that roster if they work hard at it

9:27
Jeff Sullivan: There’s one of several teams I’d like to see sign Davis Ross so that they can give Salvador Perez a damn rest

9:28
Comment From Northsider
Could you see the Cubs going after Ichiro as a banch acquisition? Well-liked low-strikeout veteran to mentor a very young OF.

9:28
Jeff Sullivan: Ruggiano/Sweeney are already around as half-decent outfield bench depth and Ichiro has never once been confused for a clubhouse mentor

9:30
Comment From Brian Cashman
Are we really going to sit out big-ticket free agency?

9:30
Jeff Sullivan: Didn’t the Yankees say a year ago they weren’t going to spend very much, before they spent hundreds of millions of dollars?

9:31
Jeff Sullivan: I guess it depends how you define big-ticket free agency. Headley and McCarthy are top targets. They’re presumably going to keep Robertson, and I expect they’ll at least make a few phone calls to the agent for Hanley Ramirez

9:31
Comment From spclxk
what is AA looking to do by trading Adam Lind for financial flexibility? Does the trade look as bad as jays think?

9:32
Jeff Sullivan: Adam Lind isn’t that valuable going forward. They said they were just going to decline his option if they couldn’t move him, so it’s pretty clear how the Jays see Lind for 2015. They don’t want a dedicated DH, and they like having a little more money to move around

9:33
Jeff Sullivan: I know that Lind’s coming off a career-best wRC+, but he didn’t hit for much power, he was a platoon player, and his numbers were lifted by his BABIP. He doesn’t play good defense and he has a bad back. He’s a fine plug-in player, but the Brewers were more desperate than the Jays for this sort of profile

9:33
Comment From Curious
Remind us…do you take fantasy questions, or no? How about fantasy questions thinly veiled as baseball questions?

9:33
Jeff Sullivan: The latter, if you manage to fool me

9:34
Jeff Sullivan: Because I haven’t stated this in a while: I don’t take fantasy questions because I don’t play fantasy baseball so I’m not qualified to give worthwhile advice. Don’t seek it out.

9:34
Comment From Tyler
For who and where is Mookie Betts playing next year?

9:35
Jeff Sullivan: Still seeing him in the Red Sox’s outfield. Things are different if the Marlins weren’t so insistent upon re-signing Giancarlo Stanton, but it is what it is

9:35
Comment From Mike
What contract do you see Pablo ultimately signing?

9:35
Jeff Sullivan: I agree with Dave — it’s easy to see him landing in Boston, for something like six years

9:35
Comment From J
Is Bridich banking on Cuddyer not accepting the QO?

9:35
Jeff Sullivan: Doubt it

9:36
Comment From Forsyth
Saw the Washington Post said the Nats should trade for Mookie Betts, but it “might require giving up Zimmermann”. What is worse – That trade proposal (Betts for Zimm) or the Dallas Morning Sun (Gallo and Jackson for Cespedes)?

9:37
Jeff Sullivan: First one’s a lot worse

9:37
Comment From john
Who should St. Louis target to help fill the talent gap left by Taveras?

9:38
Jeff Sullivan: I hate this but I guess we have to be able to talk about this stuff at some point

9:39
Jeff Sullivan: I think the Cardinals’ outfield is set. Between Holliday, Jay, Bourjos, and Grichuk, they don’t need much out there. The infield’s in place. So you’re looking at maybe a second-tier starting pitcher, or help in the bullpen. Word’s out the team has a lot of interest in Andrew Miller

9:40
Comment From a preseasoner
If you were forced to trade Brad Miller, Taijuan Walker, Michael Saunders, and Tom Wilhemson in a single package, what (who) would you want back?

9:40
Jeff Sullivan: An All-Star outfielder with a few more years of team control

9:40
Comment From Billy
Outside of the Phillies, is anyone going to be sucker enough to help de clutter the Dodgers OF for them?

9:41
Jeff Sullivan: Matt Kemp has Right-Handed Power (TM)

9:41
Jeff Sullivan: If the Dodgers put money toward making Kemp disappear, lots of teams would have interest. The Mariners have been interested for years

9:42
Comment From Amoeba
We have batting splits and pitching splits… Does it make sense to add basic defensive splits ? Isn’t teams with good defensive left side of the infield (like Baltimore) will perform better against teams with plenty of RH bats, like Detroit ? Especially, when ground ball pitcher on the mound.

9:42
Jeff Sullivan: I’m not sure exactly which splits you’re looking for, but obviously we can split defensive data by position

9:42
Jeff Sullivan: But, you mean situationally? Once upon a time we had home/road defensive splits, and I don’t know where those went, but the data is already so iffy on the overall level that when you start to break it down further, the noise can get overwhelming

9:43
Comment From Guest
If Howie Kendrick were traded who plays 2nd for the Angels?

9:44
Jeff Sullivan: Gordon Beckham, Grant Green, or a lower-profile acquisition like Jed Lowrie

9:46
Comment From Hanley
Where could I possibly sign other than the Yankees?

9:46
Jeff Sullivan: Boy, imagine if I said the Astros?

9:47
Jeff Sullivan: I could see an argument for the Tigers. I don’t see a lot more arguments. There’s value in being able to slide Ramirez to 3B and DH

9:48
Comment From Guest
What do you feel is the delay behing Tomas getting a signed with a team. Is the money not good enough? Seems like the other Cubans settled pretty quickly.

9:49
Jeff Sullivan: I don’t have an average Cuban player signing timeline, but Tomas probably wanted to get into the offseason so he could maximize the amount of attention he gets. It’s also a little strange to not have the Yankees or Red Sox or Dodgers really involved. The money’s going to be there. I don’t think anything’s wrong. It’s just, the World Series ended last week.

9:49
Comment From Theo Epstein
Is spending a ton of money this offseason the new market inefficiency?

9:50
Jeff Sullivan: A neat thing for the Cubs is that, with all this young talent around, they don’t even necessarily need to spend that wisely in the short-term. It’s liberating in a way

9:51
Comment From Mike
Taylor Jordan and Ross Detwiler for Howie Kendrick along the lines of what could be a ‘good match-up’? Gives the Nats a good 2B, and gives the Angels a quality bullpen guy and a risky starter with almost all their control.

9:52
Jeff Sullivan: Let’s try Blake Treinen

9:52
Jeff Sullivan: Doubt the Angels would care very much for Detwiler or Jordan

9:52
Comment From Mehrum
Russel Martin to the Cubs, Jays, Rangers, Dodgers, or other?

9:53
Jeff Sullivan: If Friedman is given the flexibility, Martin makes infinite sense for the Dodgers. I expect the Cubs to be looming, because while Castillo is fine, Martin’s an upgrade in every way

9:53
Comment From Scott
Do you think the Reds should start Chapman? End the debate once and for all.

9:53
Jeff Sullivan: Boy do I ever not have that power!

9:53
Jeff Sullivan: I say yes, because I want to see it, but I know they’ve tried this route before and I know I’m biased by my own interest in baseball being more subjectively exciting

9:54
Comment From Henry
Any hope for Mike Zunino to develop & get better, or is this another busted M’s hitter?

9:54
Jeff Sullivan: He’s 23 years old and he slugged .404. The Mariners put a ton on his plate. He’s never going to be *patient*, but he should improve

9:54
Comment From adam
How much can Odorizzi improve considering he gave up 20 homers?

9:56
Jeff Sullivan: He’s about as extreme a fly-ball pitcher as you find, so his homers weren’t actually out of the ordinary. I buy him as a future No. 2 and a current No. 3

9:57
Comment From mtsw
Is it reasonable to think that defensive numbers from the pre-game-charting era seriously underestimate the production of elite defenders? Could, say, Mark Belanger have had a HoF level of WAR if we could measure it like we do today?

9:58
Jeff Sullivan: According to Baseball-Reference, Belanger is second all-time in defensive WAR, between Ozzie Smith and Brooks Robinson. We’re talking about 39 defensive wins over the course of a career. I don’t think that would inflate if we had more granular and accurate measurements

9:59
Jeff Sullivan: Over whole extended careers, the simple defensive data should be all right — it would just take longer for the noise to settle down. There’s more error around historical numbers, but I don’t think the magnitudes are way off

9:59
Comment From Alex
When do you move Posey from catcher? Can he play 3rd after short at FSU? It seems like letting Panda walk, leave Belt at 1st, Posey to 3rd, and Susac catching would be ideal from a cost basis.

9:59
Jeff Sullivan: I move him from catcher when he’s no longer a really good catcher. He’s still a really good catcher

9:59
Comment From Pitching Clock
Does Hanley, or Scherzer or whoever is expecting a huge payday, see the QO from the team as a ‘slap in the face’, or as a formality.
Is there any case of a team not offering a QO as a sign of good faith to better the relationship with the player

10:00
Jeff Sullivan: It’s a formality. They understand the business

10:01
Comment From Bobby
Any indicia on Tulowitzki’s health expectations for next season? Was this the “oh ok, we’re finally gonna get the thing that’s really bothering him deal with” scenario?

10:01
Jeff Sullivan: No, he’s just more injury-prone than most. And he’s resistant to changing positions, which, granted, is fair, given that he’s an outstanding shortstop. He’s somewhat brittle, but he’s still among the most true-talented players in the world

10:02
Comment From Guest
Everyone seems to believe Brad Miller is going to get traded this offseason, so what kind of trade value does he have?

10:03
Jeff Sullivan: The shortstop market sucks and Miller is more of a pure shortstop with a half-decent bat, so he’d be in very high demand. The Dodgers and the Yankees are going to be placing some calls

10:04
Comment From Scott
One more Chapman question, would you rather stand in against Chapman or Randy Johnson? There would be a guarantee they wouldn’t plunk you in this hypothetical.

10:04
Jeff Sullivan: I want to see what 105 looks like from the box, but then Randy was my favorite pitcher growing up so that would subjectively be a neat experience

10:05
Comment From Guest
Are the Cubs going to be the new Yankee’s and the Cardinals the new Red Sox?

10:05
Jeff Sullivan: No, there isn’t going to be Yankees money floating around

10:05
Comment From Guest
Is Arcia to the Mets for a young pitcher a sensible framework?

10:05
Jeff Sullivan: Sure, that works

10:06
Comment From Mike
Do you think the Phillies use some of the money saved from AJ Burnett to get a rotation “rebound” guy – who could be flipped at the deadline? Or do they just pretty much pocket it?

10:07
Jeff Sullivan: They obviously need to address their terrible rotation depth, but I don’t think the Burnett money goes there specifically, especially with Tomas as perhaps the top priority.

10:07
Comment From Steve
Will we see DJ Peterson in Seattle this year?

10:07
Jeff Sullivan: One hopes not before September

10:08
Comment From BHWL guy
Is the 2014 version of Jake Arrieta the one we see going forward?

10:08
Jeff Sullivan: He’ll allow more than five home runs, but I’m a believer

10:08
Comment From Mike
Do you think the Phillies’ official shift toward “rebuilding” had a great effect on AJ Burnett declining his player option?

10:09
Jeff Sullivan: Even if the Phillies didn’t announce anything, Burnett can see what’s going on. He’s made enough money where he doesn’t need to hold out for a few more million, and he’d like the opportunity to play somewhere good. It’s sensible. When you have a guy who threatens to retire, so openly, I think it’s clear money is no longer the highest priority

10:09
Comment From Guest
Why is this website called “fangraphs”?

10:10
Jeff Sullivan: Once upon a time the neatest thing about us were the basic stat graphs we offer

10:10
Jeff Sullivan: I can’t remember the last time I looked at those!

10:10
Jeff Sullivan: also mlb.com was taken

10:10
Comment From Dave M.
Are you going to vote to legalize weed in Oregon today?

10:10
Jeff Sullivan: Every reason to

10:11
Comment From Matt
Do you think voters in the Player of the Year voting were very skeptical of defense? I get that defense numbers aren’t great for measuring true talent level. But shouldn’t they be fine for just say what happened in one year?

10:12
Jeff Sullivan: There’s still a lot of noise in there. Opportunities don’t even out over six months. And for what it’s worth I think there was credit given to pitch-framing, which is a part of defense, albeit an easier part to quantify

10:12
Comment From Dan
I know Michael Cuddyer is the obvious shocking one, but wasn’t it surprising that Liriano received a QO?

10:13
Jeff Sullivan: Only because of the team. Liriano’s at least an average starting pitcher, and average starting pitchers are worth that money over one season

10:13
Comment From 20longyears
In terms of percentage, what is the likelihood that Russell Martin resigns with the Pirates? Which team do you think will land him?

10:14
Jeff Sullivan: It’s a really low chance — he’s a premier-level player at a premier position. As noted earlier, I see Dodgers or Cubs

10:14
Comment From Steve
Do the Red Sox trade a Mookie centered package for a top flight SP?

10:14
Jeff Sullivan: I think they’d sure prefer not to

10:16
Comment From Mike
Howard + $15 M for Bourn and Swisher (and maybe a prospect at the bottom of top 20/30 lists) – who says no?

10:16
Jeff Sullivan: Hold on, I’m trying to work this out quickly

10:17
Jeff Sullivan: Gosh, I feel like that’s close

10:18
Jeff Sullivan: Howard’s a complete waste of about $60 million. Bourn and Swisher are due close to $60 million, combined, and they’re projected to be not very good.

10:19
Jeff Sullivan: Throwing in the money to even things out…I’m in favor of whatever this is

10:19
Comment From Andy
Re: Burnett, can you remember another time recently where a player opted out of a higher guaranteed payday to become a FA?

10:19
Jeff Sullivan: Gil Meche opted out of a higher guaranteed payday to become retired, which is a kind of free agency

10:20
Jeff Sullivan: I don’t recall anything off the top of my head, but my memory is embarrassingly poor when it comes to something I can’t easily google

10:20
Comment From Erix
Do you think Howie Kendrick gets moved?

10:20
Jeff Sullivan: Looks that way. He’ll command more interest than Freese

10:21
Comment From Jake deBomb
wrt any of the players who could be available in walk years (Kendrick for example), what would you give up to acquire him? Point is, for just 1 year, you aren’t going to have much leverage in trade negotiations… these players aren’t going to yield much, which is why dealing players even at the July before their walk year the acquiring team can get 2 playoff runs rather than just 1… big difference.

10:22
Jeff Sullivan: If you’re suggesting the Angels should’ve traded Kendrick this past summer, they were probably focused on trying to be the best team in the American League

10:22
Jeff Sullivan: You are correct that players with one year remaining have limited value. Balancing that out to some extent is that they also have limited risk.

10:24
Comment From Guest
Anthony Rizzo’s ISO jumped by .060, along with a six percentage point jump in his HR/FB rate. Does he sustain that ISO?

10:24
Jeff Sullivan: I think it’s real. He’s 25 and he started more consistently getting lift.

10:25
Comment From pacific crest trail
Would a reunion of Torii Hunter and Seattle manager Lloyd McClendon provide the Mariners a needed righthanded bat and some clubhouse leadership?

10:26
Jeff Sullivan: Hunter would make the most sense as a fourth outfielder there, a righty to complement Ackley/Saunders, but he probably wants more guaranteed playing time.

10:28
Comment From Andy
Are teams allowed to give qualifying offers / collect comp picks on players who have club/player options? I.e. could the Phillies have given Burnett a qualifying offer knowing that he would almost certainly turn them down?

10:28
Jeff Sullivan: I know a team can extend a qualifying offer after declining a club option. The Orioles thought about doing this with Markakis. I’m not so sure about player options but I presume it’s the same

10:29
Comment From THE average sports fan
Vegas has moved Cubs from 40-1 to 25-1. I like Maddon too, but that move seems ridiculous.

10:29
Jeff Sullivan: Maybe it’s about what it means — maybe people are more certain than ever, now, that the Cubs are about to spend big this winter

10:30
Comment From That One Guy
Hi Jeff. When is the deadline for players to respond to a QO?

10:30
Jeff Sullivan: Monday, 5pm ET

10:30
Comment From Gila Monster
How is it fair that we use FIP for pitcher WAR, but not hitters WAR? I know hitters have more control over their BABIP, but lets not act like it doesn’t fluctuate.

10:30
Jeff Sullivan: What you said. Obviously, it’s not perfect, but that’s why we also offer RA9-WAR and 50/50 WAR for pitchers. Reality is somewhere in between the extremes

10:32
Comment From That One Guy
Hi Jeff. The Tigers have sort of stated that they aren’t going to spend a bunch of money this offseason, aside from bringing back Victor M. What do you think they’ll do with CF?

10:33
Jeff Sullivan: My boring guess is that they stick with Davis for the time being and cross their fingers on Devon Travis and Daniel Fields

10:34
Comment From ThePuck
Should Twins fans be concerned that the Twins hired an organization man, Paul Molitor, to be the next manager when it seems real change is needed? Yes, he’s a ‘great baseball mind’, but should we be excited they just did what they always do, hire from within?

10:34
Jeff Sullivan: You should pretty much never really care about managerial news. If it’s not someone like Joe Maddon, then it’s just a someone, and outcomes will be determined by the players on the field. It’s not a surprise the Twins stayed internal. It’s what they do.

10:35
Comment From CatGuy
What do you make of Sandoval’s season-to-season variance aginst LHP? Small samples or something tangible?

10:35
Jeff Sullivan: You’re looking at samples of about 150 PA a season. It’s nothing

10:35
Comment From adam
Who has a better shot at the WS in the next 5 years: Marlins or Cubs?

10:35
Jeff Sullivan: Cubs by a mile

10:36
Comment From Nop
Do you see the Dbacks parting with their excess infield depth? Can they find a taker for Aaron Hill?

10:36
Jeff Sullivan: Like the Mariners, the Diamondbacks remain in position to move a pure shortstop if they want

10:36
Comment From Prich
All this ‘talk’ about the Angels trading Kendrick… Are they really ready to see if Green is ready to be the full time 2B while their window winds down?

10:37
Jeff Sullivan: Well, they’d be getting something in return for Kendrick. But they want to look beyond just 2015, so they need to start spreading things around

10:37
Comment From Chris
Baseball Prospectus released their top 10 list for Phillies prospects yesterday. After looking over the list, when should I, as a Phillies fan, stop weeping uncontrollably?

10:37
Jeff Sullivan: When you look outside and see a squirrel hopping through the grass

10:38
Comment From Oren
Who would you rather as your fifth starter next year if you were a Blue Jays fan – JA Happ or Marco Estrada? I tend to think Estrada is the higher risk, higher upside option, and given the kids they have in the farm system that might be able to contribute, I’m a bit more comfortable taking that chance knowing I can replace him easily if he busts.

10:39
Jeff Sullivan: I’d rather use Happ, but the benefit of this situation is flexibility. The Blue Jays can see what Happ’s trade market is, and if they remain with things as they are, they could have Estrada in the bullpen as a long man and sixth starter. That depth would become necessary at some point

10:40
Comment From Alex
If we take defensive metrics out of the equation based on year to year variation, Panda’s fangraphs offensive value last 4 years: 23.4, 8.3, 7, 3.3. I’m not sure how that’s the exact same player.

10:40
Jeff Sullivan: Well obviously he was amazing in 2011. But 2012 – 2014, he’s been the same. There’s no difference between a 118 wRC+ and a 111 wRC+

10:40
Comment From Guest
Where do you think Lester ends up? Seems like he makes a lot of sense for many teams.

10:40
Jeff Sullivan: That’s the thing about great pitchers, yeah. He’s my odds-on favorite to be the guy going to Chicago.

10:42
Comment From Nop
Could Dbacks break the bank for Tomas? Like they tried to do for Tanaka?

10:43
Jeff Sullivan: Yeah, they could, although their interest doesn’t appear quite so strong.

10:43
Comment From kevinthecomic
So, AJ Burnett turns down his option with the Phillies because he wants to ‘play for a contender next year’. Tell me, what contender thinks AJ Burnett is the piece they are missing??

10:43
Jeff Sullivan: He’s adequate at the back of a rotation. Lots of team could use him. None of them should want to give him eight figures, though

10:44
Comment From Samuel
Highest priority or two for the Texas FO now that their coaching staff is 95% set in stone?

10:44
Jeff Sullivan: Accumulation of starting pitching

10:44
Comment From Phil
Shouldn’t the value of a win in relation to players’ worth be more logarithmic? If we say a win is flatly worth something like $7MM, then Mike Trout is, for the next couple years anyway, worth about $50-60MM per year. But money is a finite source and you have to field a 25 man roster. Nobody will ever realistically pay that much, even at a one or two year deal.

10:45
Jeff Sullivan: No one can really afford to pay FA-market prices for a whole roster. So, no one tries. At the upper extremes, we probably would observe additional wins being slightly undervalued, but you have to be a really amazing player to get there. Short of that, all we’ve observed is linearity

10:45
Comment From Guest
Does loss of Butler even out loss of Shields?

10:45
Jeff Sullivan: Man, it’s close

10:46
Comment From Baseball Beer Man
How much money do the Cubs need to throw at Russell Martin to get him?

10:46
Jeff Sullivan: $1 million more than the Dodgers

10:46
Comment From mtsw
How all-in should the Orioles go? They won 96 this season without big contribution from Davis or Wieters (the guys they lose after this season). But that said, pushing your chips in on 2015 while the Yankees and Red Sox are still (relatively) struggling makes a lot of sense right?

10:47
Jeff Sullivan: The Yankees and Red Sox are bouncing right back. Once more, looking ahead, every team in the East has a shot at that division. The Orioles should and will continue to be relatively low-key, as they try to keep their window as wide as possible. They shouldn’t try to put everything into the next year

10:47
Comment From Big Joe Mufferaw
Given 150 starts, Javier Baez would break the all time record for Ks… But how many homers could he hit?

10:47
Jeff Sullivan: Probably 30, for now. Eventually, 50

10:48
Comment From Ember
What do you think will happen with Robertson? If he accepts the QO, are the Yankees happy about that? 15 mil for a closer is pretty steep, though they may appreciate that it’s just for 1 year.

10:48
Jeff Sullivan: They have to figure there’s a great chance he accepts and returns. There are worse things than being able to take a player like this year to year

10:49
Comment From Guest
Wouldnt the cubs just get Montero if the Martin thing turns into a bidding war?

10:49
Jeff Sullivan: Depends what the Diamondbacks want. Montero hasn’t been a real good player since 2012. Good framer, but the bat’s eroding

10:49
Comment From Guest
Do you think Bonds deserves to be in the hall?

10:49
Jeff Sullivan: 100%

10:50
Comment From rekindled hope
Do you think the Mariners come to spring training thinking Elias, Walker and Paxton at the back end of the rotation … or do they pick up middle of rotation starter? Who do think is odds on favorite?

10:50
Jeff Sullivan: I expect they add a starter

10:50
Comment From Guest
When do you get to be a bbwaa member?

10:51
Jeff Sullivan: Probably never because I don’t go to enough games because there’s no team in my city and I don’t want to go to Seattle all the time

10:51
Comment From Guest
Why would the Cubs want to move any youngsters, instead of just pay $$$ to get FAs? I realize they might not win them all, but why not push hard on FAs and hold onto the kids, rather than turn prospects into deteriorating veterans while sitting on a very small player budget relative to market size?

10:51
Jeff Sullivan: Prospects can be traded for something other than deteriorating veterans

10:51
Comment From Prich
What does your gut tell you… With the power a given, will Javy Baez run the bases/play D well enough and get enough ‘fear walks’ to compensate for the Ks?

10:52
Jeff Sullivan: I think he’ll become an acceptable player, but I fear that his ceiling won’t be achieved because of his obvious limitations. The smartest move, to me, would be for the Cubs to find a team that most highly values prospects by their upside

10:52
Comment From Guest
fair pt re: the Cubs; but majority of hypos are ppl like Hamels/Ruiz/Montero and that stuff is just O.O to me

10:52
Jeff Sullivan: Hamels would make sense if Amaro made sense

10:53
Comment From Matt
Are the Cubs moving too fast? Wouldn’t it be better to wait a year or two to see if the young guys are actually going to be good?

10:53
Jeff Sullivan: They haven’t actually done anything yet, aside from hire Maddon. But they’ve got Rizzo, and Castro, and Arrieta, and the makings of a bullpen, and so much talent around that they can move forward expecting a certain level of production even from relative “unknowns”.

10:53
Comment From Tvators
Looks like angels may have Baldoquin to replcae kendrick, reported signed for 8 million bonus

10:53
Jeff Sullivan: breaking news in the baseball chat

10:54
Jeff Sullivan: here’s the MLBTR writeup http://www.mlbtraderumors.c…

10:54
Jeff Sullivan: not a big-leaguer in 2015, presumably

10:55
Comment From Hard-hitting Peter Gammons
Andrew Friedman’s front office w/Farhan Zaidi as GM Josh Byrnes and some more potential great hires is like a dream team

10:55
Jeff Sullivan: Dream-team front office with dream-team financial flexibility. No guarantee of anything, but situations don’t get much better

10:56
Comment From Kimball
Should some team take a flyer on Franklin Gutierrez, ala the Sox on Sizemore? Seems like there’s at least a chance of significant upside and presumably he’d sign for any guaranteed money at all.

10:56
Jeff Sullivan: Someone should try to give him money every single year until he’s 35 or 40 years old, just to see

10:58
Comment From Bobby
Anthony Rendon had some pretty scary injury history going into last season, but stayed relatively healthy throughout. Any indication that a pro health and fitness regimen is to credit? The Nats don’t seem to have the best luck in keeping folks healthy

10:58
Jeff Sullivan: For Rendon, it was all ankles, and I’m going to guess his actual injury risk moving forward was overblown. A small number of injuries can deal a large amount of damage, but it’s not like Rendon appeared to be chronically hurt.

10:58
Comment From Guest
Mark buehrle have any value if no money is eaten? B prospect? Mediocre bullpen arm?

10:59
Jeff Sullivan: If no money’s eaten, the Blue Jays can’t get anything worthwhile back

10:59
Comment From Jesus Montero
What am I doing next year?

10:59
Jeff Sullivan: hitting dingers in Triple-A

11:00
Comment From A. Lane
If a player accepts the QO, can he be offered another one the next year?

11:00
Jeff Sullivan: Yes, and some people see this as a problem with the system

11:00
Jeff Sullivan: There are many problems with the system

11:00
Comment From mtsw
AJ Burnett to the Orioles? He lives in the Baltimore area in the offseason.

11:00
Jeff Sullivan: Feels like a good starting point

11:01
Comment From PJ
Odds Cubs center a package around Baez for a Hamels in the next 2 years?

11:01
Jeff Sullivan: They could visit something like that in a couple months if they haven’t made progress in FA, but I think it’s a longer shot. They don’t want to exchange prospects for older players

11:02
Comment From Hi Erix
If Verlander hadn’t signed his extension and was a free agent this offseason, what do you think his contract would look like?

11:02
Jeff Sullivan: Hmm. 4/70?

11:03
Comment From Gareth
Toronto got hosed in the Estrada for Lind trade. Didn’t they learn from the yan gomes/mike aviles for Esmil Rogers trade?

11:03
Jeff Sullivan: Yan Gomes was a talented young catcher. Adam Lind is an aging platoon 1B/DH with back problems

11:03
Comment From Guest
I know a popular answer is “somewhere in between” but with a gun to your head would you put 2015 Allen Craig closer to 2013 Allen Craig or 2014 Allen Craig?

11:03
Jeff Sullivan: 2014. I’m concerned

11:04
Comment From Guest
Is there a fear with team like the Red Sox,Cubs, and Dodgers “getting smart” that teams like the Rays or A’s will be at a significant disadvantage once again? The Red Sox and Rays seem to be in a similar place, but the Red Sox can sign big free agents. It seems like small market teams HAVE to tear it to the ground eventually, while big market teams can just reload.

11:05
Jeff Sullivan: Money’s always going to be an important factor, but then you have to wonder, how much advantage is there to signing big-time FA, anyway? I don’t want to say that money corrupts, but money allows you to be more aggressive and when you’re more aggressive you might be more prone to mistakes. Those smaller-market teams have to be more cautious, which might well work to their benefit

11:05
Comment From Guest
theres a lot of guns being put heads in these chats

11:05
Jeff Sullivan: People really upset about baseball being over

11:05
Comment From Guest
Is Nick Franklin good?

11:05
Jeff Sullivan: He’s ok

11:06
Jeff Sullivan: I need to wrap this thing up so I can write about god knows what for tomorrow

11:06
Jeff Sullivan: So thank you everybody for hanging out, and I’m sorry for what I didn’t or couldn’t address. We’ll do it again next week at the same time, and until then, be well and have great days

We hoped you liked reading Jeff Sullivan FanGraphs Chat — 11/4/14 by Jeff Sullivan!

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Jeff made Lookout Landing a thing, but he does not still write there about the Mariners. He does write here, sometimes about the Mariners, but usually not.

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Colonel Obvious

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