Jeff Sullivan FanGraphs Chat — 12/16/16

9:11
Jeff Sullivan: Welp okay

9:11
Jeff Sullivan: Hello friends and welcome to delayed Friday baseball chat

9:11
Bork: Hello, friend!

9:11
Jeff Sullivan: Hello friend

9:12
Sandy Kazmir: Where’s my burrito? Where’s my burrito? Where’s my burrito?

9:12
Jeff Sullivan: at the store

9:12
CamdenWarehouse: Is there a word to describe how one should feel when one’s favorite team signs a player who hasn’t pitched in the majors in 7 years and hasn’t been good in over a decade?

9:12
Jeff Sullivan: The optimist in me would submit the word “intrigued”!

9:13
Jeff Sullivan: When there’s so little clear reason for a team to have done something, I think that’s when you have to reconsider your own assumptions. Obviously they see a glimmer. That’s weird! And it’s different!

9:13
Jeff Sullivan: It’s worse when your favorite team signs players who are obviously bad for conventional reasons

9:14
Ronnie: In 708 plate appearances spread over parts of eight seasons Jason Bourgeois has produced 0.1 fWAR & 0.0 bWAR. Is the fact that his career has been so proletariat in nature a good indicator that there is indeed some sort of Cosmic Humour?

9:15
Jeff Sullivan: damn

9:16
Jeff Sullivan: Don Money had a 16-year career. 36 WAR! So some things balance out

9:17
The Decadent Moose: More impressive: Chris Neil and his 1,000 games or Don Kessingger, his 2,000 games and 8 WAR?

9:18
Jeff Sullivan: Chris Gomez topped 1,500 career games, and he managed a career WAR of -2.2!

9:19
Jeff Sullivan: Alternatively, there’s the case of Doug Flynn. Just 1,309 games, but -8.3 WAR

9:19
Jeff Sullivan: In 8 of his 11 seasons, he performed below replacement-level

9:19
Jeff Sullivan: Second-round draft pick!

9:20
Stuafoo: Article idea: for each team, identify the best ever player outright released by that team (who then went on to have an amazing career somewhere else)–i.e. Mets and Justin Turner

9:20
Jeff Sullivan: Probably a few articles, given the work that would require, but I like it. Enjoyable!

9:21
Jeff Sullivan: Although it’s worth noting Turner was non-tendered, not released

9:22
Jeff Sullivan: Maybe that would be easier to research. Best players ever non-tendered

9:23
Sonny: Is 8y as a top 10 team preferable, by baseball FO consensus, to being a top 5 team for 4 years?

9:23
Jeff Sullivan: Probably yes. The dream is to build a consistently competitive product. They’ll always tell you the goal is a championship, and they all *want* a championship, but they also know it’s basically random. As long as you’re always pretty good, you’re doing a solid job

9:24
JD15: Do the Cubs have any more moves up their sleeves? Have they done enough this offseason to stay atop the NL? Are they better than last year (with Schwarber without Fowler/Chapman)?

9:25
Jeff Sullivan: As far as I can tell the Cubs and the Dodgers are basically even. They’re the two best teams in baseball, probably, and I don’t know how they could reasonably separate from one another. So early odds are for an NLCS rematch. If the Cubs do anything else, it’s probably to get a cost-controlled starting pitcher, as has been expected all offseason

9:26
Jeff Sullivan: It would be difficult for me to say they’re better than they were a year ago, when they were one of the better teams in recent memory. That’s a crazy-high bar. But they do have a shot if they stay healthy enough; the talent level is extreme

9:26
JT: If you had been running a team the last 10 years, what would have been your most disastrous signing and trade?

9:27
Jeff Sullivan: “Disastrous” is strong but I used to obsess a little over Ryan Doumit before I knew anything about framing and catcher defense

9:28
Jeff Sullivan: The Mariners basically made my own most disastrous signing when they grabbed Chone Figgins

9:30
Jeff Sullivan: This is a really interesting question that I wish I could answer better in the moment

9:30
Jeff Sullivan: For some reason I’m having trouble pulling names off the top of my head. But I would have screwed up an awful lot!

9:32
Jeff Sullivan: Some chance I might’ve been willing to trade Mike Trout as a prospect or a rookie, if I had him in my system

9:33
Cicero: The Rockies lose 3 OF(Cargo, Blackmon, Parra) over the next 3 years, they have 3 OF in the Pipeline(Dahl, Patterson, Tapia) all are LHH, Desmond is a career 129wRC+ against LHP and is good IF depth is 14m AAV really that crazy?

9:35
Jeff Sullivan: I don’t think it’s crazy to give Ian Desmond $14 million a year, and I don’t have a strong qualm against $70m/5yr. It’s reasonable for someone with his athleticism. It gets worse when you consider that the Rockies don’t have a great way to use him yet, and they’re probably not good enough to compete yet, and they gave up the most valuable draft pick that could have been forfeited this winter

9:35
Jeff Sullivan: That last part, I really don’t like.

9:35
Jeff Sullivan: Kicks Desmond up to the equivalent of, say, $80 – 85 million over five years. For an average player? Ehh

9:36
DynastyBallBase: What do you see for Cory Spangenberg’s 2017 role and PT?

9:36
Jeff Sullivan: I should hope that this is something I never sit down and think about

9:37
Jeff Sullivan: If Solarte had been moved, the door would be open for Spangenberg to bat like 400 times. But with the Angels out of the market that’s gotten harder to pull off

9:37
D: Who do you see as most enticing of the Dodgers young bounce back candidates? Thompson, Ryu, kike Hernandez?

9:38
Jeff Sullivan: Have to think Ryu, just on the slim off chance his shoulder works again

9:38
Jeff Sullivan: career 81 FIP-. Forgotten now but he was very good!

9:39
Bill: What prospects do you think the Dodgers should realistically offer for Dozier? And should that be good enough for the Twins to pull the trigger now, or should they wait and test Dozier’s market at the trade deadline?

9:39
Jeff Sullivan: Something built around De Leon should work, as should something built around Verdugo and change. I don’t think Dozier’s value is likely to increase at the deadline. The premiums mostly go to ace starters and high-leverage relievers

9:40
NatsFan: How many feelings do you have about Joe Blanton. And what are they?

9:40
Jeff Sullivan: Three. I have three feelings

9:41
Jeff Sullivan: I feel like he’s had an entertaining career trajectory

9:41
Jeff Sullivan: I feel like he’s underrated now because of how disappointing he used to be as a starter

9:41
Jeff Sullivan: And I feel like we probably wouldn’t be very good friends

9:42
Tommy Lasordid: Does DeLeon, Calhoun and Stewart get the Dodgers Dozier, Kinsler, neither or either?

9:43
Jeff Sullivan: I think that package gets you either, but I also would see it as an overpay, because I am quite fond of Brock Stewart

9:43
DynastyBallBase: How much chance does Chance Sisco have at regular ABs this year? timing of take-over?

9:44
Jeff Sullivan: Two catchers would have to really flame out in front of him. I don’t think Sisco is a major factor until at least May of 2018

9:44
Jeff Sullivan: As effective as he just was in Double-A, he’s still 21 years old, and catchers require a lot of time to get polished

9:44
nick-j: What does it take for the Dodgers to get Dozier? And what kind of reliever can they get after that trade?

9:45
Jeff Sullivan: Scroll up!

9:45
J. Peterman: Which 2016 surprise is more for real – Cotton or Perdomo?

9:45
Jeff Sullivan: Cotton

9:45
Jeff Sullivan: Cotton is good

9:46
Jeff Sullivan: Perdomo gets credit for the sinkerball-y nature, but I think Cotton will be a No. 2 or No. 3 before long

9:47
Erik: Does the Phillies’ extension for Herrera at such a cheap price instantly catapult them into discussion for the best offseason so far? They hadn’t done much else, and they hadn’t needed to do much else, so extending their young core should be their main goal, and they seem to have achieved that goal better than one would have expected.

9:47
Jeff Sullivan: I can’t give them that much credit just for one extension. They already had Herrera for four years and he wasn’t going to cost them a fortune, almost no matter what

9:48
Jeff Sullivan: The Phillies haven’t screwed anything up, and they’re on the right path, but they’ve been quiet, not outstanding

9:48
M’s fan: In terms of expected cost and projections, who do you see as the better target at this point: DeScalafani, Smyly, Odorizzi, Kazmir

9:48
Jeff Sullivan: Kazmir could break down tomorrow

9:49
Jeff Sullivan: Smyly, I like, and he’d be easier to get than Odorizzi

9:49
Jeff Sullivan: I don’t know what they could realistically package to get DeSclafani, since he still has another four years of control, on a rebuilding team that needs decent starting pitching

9:52
DynastyBallBase: is Max Schrock the next Jose Altuve?

9:52
Jeff Sullivan: I’m not sure Carson is going to stand down from the Josh Donaldson comp any time soon

9:54
Mike in Raleigh: Do you expect Houston to trade Evan Gattis and what can they realistically expect to get for him. Thanks.

9:54
Jeff Sullivan: I do not, and, not very much

9:54
Jeff Sullivan: He has a certain small amount of value, but there are still bat-first players available all over, and he isn’t that good

9:55
D: How precisely do the dodgers fix their 2nd base situation? And what’s the max package you would part with for said 2nd baseman?

9:55
Jeff Sullivan: Dozier is beginning to feel somewhat inevitable

9:55
Jeff Sullivan: The needs there are aligned and the Dodgers have so many young players they could afford to give up

9:55
Jeff Sullivan: Plus, Dozier could probably push the Dodgers a little in front of the Cubs, probability-wise

9:56
M’s fan: How would you project Ivan Nova going forward? I’m intrigued but very, very, very skeptical

9:56
Jeff Sullivan: In my head I have trouble imagining a more league-average-y starter

9:58
Jeff Sullivan: He’s kind of what he was in 2012. Similar stuff, similar approach. Give him a good framer and he can make the JA Happ thing happen

9:59
DynastyBallBase: Will Wilmer Flores ever be freed to regular ABs?

9:59
Jeff Sullivan: Not as long as he struggles so much against righties

10:00
Jeff Sullivan: But because he’s still only 25 it stands to reason someone will give him a starting job at some point before he’s 30

10:00
Kristen: Who are some good young #3-SP’s or near-ready SP prospects with that kind of ceiling that TEX could legitimately acquire this offseason?

10:00
Jeff Sullivan: Well, it’s no accident they’ve been in so much contact with the Rays

10:00
Jeff Sullivan: But because I mentioned his name earlier: Brock Stewart! Someone should go get Brock Stewart

10:02
JKD: Feels like given both the state of the market for starters and relievers, and the trends in starter-to-dominant-reliever conversion, it might make a lot of sense for some of the fringey backend starters to start marketing themselves as shutdown relievers, once say Hammel and Nova sign. Most good teams are fairly set on starters but the top-end relief drawer is rapidly emptying, and pretty much every good team still needs more bullpen help.

10:03
Jeff Sullivan: I don’t know how, say, Colby Lewis could market himself as a great reliever. Or Doug Fister. Or Brett Anderson or whoever. Pitchers need to prove themselves in the bullpen before they’ll be paid to be great in the bullpen. Teams don’t just throw out that big money on spec

10:03
Matt: What would your HoF ballot look like?

10:03
Jeff Sullivan: It would have 10 players, and it would be similar to the saber-community consensus

10:03
Jeff Sullivan: Yes to Bonds, yes to Raines, yes to Edgar, etc

10:05
Baron von Waffles: Do you see Archie Bradley taking a step forward this year at all?

10:06
Jeff Sullivan: Terrible against lefties, no quality out-of-zone whiff pitch. The arm speed is there but I’d bet on him remaining mostly the same

10:08
Kiermaier’s Piercing Green Eyes: The Rays took a converted INF in the Rule 5 draft who has 50 innings in A ball. KATOH loves him and all reports I’ve heard have been glowing on his control and numbers. What’s the thought process for the other 29 teams here? Do other teams not expect him to stick/have room or do MLB teams not notice unranked converted players barely at A level? I also read a comment that the Mariners didn’t promote him to try to keep him more of a secret before the draft–is that a thing?

10:09
Jeff Sullivan: Gadea pitched at such a low level

10:10
Jeff Sullivan: Nothing at Triple-A, nothing at Double-A, nothing at High-A

10:11
Jeff Sullivan: He wasn’t even with Clinton until the middle of July, so any promotion would’ve given him hardly any time at the next level anyway

10:11
Jeff Sullivan: Part of it is just that Gadea is unknown, and teams can’t cover *everybody*. But he was also so far away that it’s easy to look at his numbers and feel like they aren’t exceptional, as projecting 2017 big-league performance goes

10:12
Jeff Sullivan: I like him as a grab and I really hope he sticks. Relievers can move awfully fast

10:12
Steve: What was your favourite album of 2016?

10:13
Jeff Sullivan: King Charles, Gamble for a Rose

10:14
Tanaka : Shouldn’t the Yankees approach me about an extension? I am clearly the best free agent pitcher available next year ( assuming I opt out)

10:15
Jeff Sullivan: Tanaka would be opting out of $67 million over three years, which is not nothing. Legitimate concerns do remain about his elbow, and those concerns are shared league-wide. Teams still figure Tanaka will blow up at some point; it’s how things usually happen

10:16
Jeff Sullivan: That being said, I would expect some conversation. The Yankees won’t let him go for nothing. But if the Yankees don’t make a strong push to keep him, that’s going to be because they know more about his medicals than anyone else

10:17
J. Peterman: What do you see as Jorge Polanco’s floor and ceiling? Which is more likely?

10:18
Jeff Sullivan: I actually see a lot of Ketel Marte in there

10:19
Jeff Sullivan: Polanco is way more of a fly-ball hitter but he’s a fly-ball hitter who strikes me as under-powered, which isn’t a great combo

10:19
Jeff Sullivan: If he gains just a little more strength or consistency, the extra homers make him a legitimate starter, and maybe he even becomes pretty good. But the present package would have him as a below-average regular middle infielder

10:20
Kristen: Half-season rental of David Price netted DET TOR’s #1 SP prospect at the time (according to FG) Daniel Norris along with Matt Boyd. What could TEX get for a half-season rental of Darvish at the deadline? Need good young SP’s/near-ready SP prospects big time.

10:20
Jeff Sullivan: Yeah, you can be guided by the Price deal, or by the Johnny Cueto deal

10:21
Jeff Sullivan: Darvish will need to show he’s totally healthy, but if he’s great and the Rangers aren’t, then come July, Darvish would be at the top of the market. He’s perceived as a game-changer

10:22
J: If Andrelton Simmons or Billy Hamilton played 1B what would the defensive metrics show?

10:22
Jeff Sullivan: The best defensive season at first base since 2002 comes in around 20 UZR/150 games

10:23
Jeff Sullivan: Now, we’re talking about very different skillsets. Simmons would adjust well, because of his hands, but his range and arm would be of little use. Hamilton’s speed would mean almost nothing so he’d be a near-total waste

10:24
Jeff Sullivan: You’d probably see Simmons around +15 runs or so. First base takes some getting used to. I’m not even sure Hamilton would be better than 0 – +5. He’s perfect in the middle of the outfield

10:24
kevinthecomic: I heard Adam Ottavino on a radio interview yesterday. He mentioned that he regularly visits this website. Conceivably, then, he knows that his employer (the Colorado Rockies) is clueless. No question here, just, awkward!!!!!

10:24
Jeff Sullivan: I don’t think the Rockies are clueless. And just looking at them generally, they’re in a good spot, with a lot of young players established or arriving

10:25
Jeff Sullivan: They just don’t act optimally, or close to it. Maybe they can’t, because of where they play.

10:25
Will: Which is more likely: Harvey as top 3 CY voting or traded by the deadline?

10:25
Jeff Sullivan: The former

10:25
Jeff Sullivan: If Harvey’s good, the Mets are probably good, and there’s no reason to trade him. If he’s bad, no one will want to trade for him

10:28
striker: Any scenario where White Sox can get both Rodgers and Dahl back from the Rockies for Quintana? Perhaps include Jones? Quintana + Jones for Rodgers, Dahl, Pint, Murphy + 3 other pieces.

10:29
Jeff Sullivan: Something built around Quintana/Jones and Rodgers/Dahl is not too lopsided either way. But I do hesitate to believe the Rockies would want to push forward like that, especially with Dahl lined up to help right away. I don’t know how much they’d believe Quintana would fit in that ballpark, and that would be a very heavy investment

10:30
Jeff Sullivan: If Colorado played elsewhere, the equation would be different. But Quintana in Coors could be a particular risk

10:30
Jeff Sullivan: He is, after all, mostly a contact pitcher

10:30
Jack: I’m a big Reds fan. It seems like they would have to have every one of their young, talented players to perform near the top of the potential to be able to compete with an unbelievably strong Cubs organization even by 2019. Do you agree? If you’re the GM what would you do at this point?

10:30
Jeff Sullivan: It’s almost impossible for me to imagine the Reds catching up to the Cubs within three years

10:31
Jeff Sullivan: Their rebuild is going slowly. They need to hit on a number of their young pitchers and there’s not much left for them to sell. If I’m the Reds I just invest heavily in player development and I poke around for my own new equivalents of Keon Broxton

10:31
Jeff Sullivan: (who I love)

10:31
L: Why is everyone asking about the Sox trading Abreu? He’s coming off a subpar year and he is only getting older. I don’t think teams would be too interested. What say you?

10:32
Jeff Sullivan: He’s a power-hitting regular with three years of affordable team control left, and the White Sox have no reason to keep him around given the complete and total teardown

10:32
Jeff Sullivan: Teams would be very interested, but maybe more in July, when there are fewer similar players available

10:32
Jeff Sullivan: Right now, guys like Bautista, Encarnacion, and Napoli are still free agents

10:33
The Talk: My fourth grade son just asked me what “WAR” means- which i guess now shows up on baseball cards. Have a simple talk track?

10:33
Jeff Sullivan: Are you sure he was asking about WAR

10:33
Jeff Sullivan: are you sure he wasn’t asking about war

10:33
Jeff Sullivan: It’s easier to explain the first one than the second one

10:33
Erik: Steamer projects heavy regression for Odubel Herrera, falling to a 97 wRC+ and just 2.4 WAR. That would make his extension seem much closer to fair than it seems. But do you really think he’ll fall that far? He does have a high BABIP, but also has the profile to sustain one.

10:34
Jeff Sullivan: I don’t think he actually has that profile — he doesn’t, for example, sting the ball consistently, or avoid pop-ups

10:34
Jeff Sullivan: The smart money would be on Herrera to regress at the plate. But I think he has proven himself to be an average or better-than-average regular. He continues to improve and he still gets the job done in center field

10:35
silvpak: is austin barnes a 2b option for the dodgers? the bat seems to play at mi and he’s *very* slight of frame behind the plate; any reason he can’t man 2b full time and act as the #3 catcher? i’d be loathe to deal from verdugo/de leon/bellinger for dozier.

10:35
Jeff Sullivan: They like him too much as a backstop

10:35
YKnotDisco?!: Good morning Jeff. Curious where your favorite ballpark to watch a game in person is located?

10:35
Jeff Sullivan: It’s Seattle, but I haven’t been to that many ballparks

10:35
Chase: What does Houston still need to add? Frontline SP to go with Keuchel?

10:35
Jeff Sullivan: Yep. No. 1 or No. 2 starting pitcher

10:36
Jeff Sullivan: And that’s almost literally it

10:36
Yosemite Sam: Does Buccholz have significant trade value?

10:36
Jeff Sullivan: Heavens no

10:37
Wil Myers: How much better can I get? Can I cut down on the K’s? SB was an anomaly correct?

10:37
Jeff Sullivan: Somewhat surprisingly, Myers just ran a better-than-average contact rate. Where he struggled was with taking a whole bunch of called third strikes. So Myers could stand to improve his two-strike approach and discipline, which would make him more offensively complete

10:38
Jeff Sullivan: I don’t think he’s coming close to 30 steals again, but I do definitely buy Myers as a strong baserunner

10:38
Andrew: FG projects the Mets for only 84 wins, even though they have accomplished what they’ve wanted to this offseason. What should the Mets do in the short and long term to get into the 90-win range (where the Nats are)?

10:39
Jeff Sullivan: I think the Steamer projections are underrating them, but they could beef up the bullpen some more

10:39
Jeff Sullivan: Our projections are stronger when we finally fold in ZiPS, which remains some time away

10:39
Jeff: It seemed like much of the value for the Nationals in the Adam Eaton deal was that his team-friendly contract allowed the club to go out and spend somewhere else. Now that they missed on Kenley, do you see the Nationals making another move? Or will they stick with Zimmerman at 1B and develop a Closer from options already in their bullpen?

10:39
Jeff Sullivan: Wouldn’t be a shock to see them in on David Robertson

10:40
Jeff Sullivan: failing that, Brad Ziegler could work

10:40
Jeff Sullivan: Unless Ziegler has signed during the course of this chat…

10:40
Jeff Sullivan: He has not!

10:41
Kristen: How old is Fangraphs, and can you briefly describe its origins? Just a couple of guys shooting the shit and it went from there?

10:42
WhiteSox2020: The poor framing of the White Sox catchers is well documented. I believe this impacted Robertson significantly given he relies more on control than a big arm. If the Sox eat some of his salary what is a realistic return? Any chance at Robles from the Nats?

10:42
Jeff Sullivan: Robles is unrealistic. Maybe if the White Sox paid every last penny

10:42
Jeff Sullivan: Even then I’m not sure

10:43
Jeff Sullivan: Easier for the Nationals to just sign a free agent or two

10:43
Wil Myers: Great article on Odubel. Better than Austin Jackson in 5 years or also toast?

10:43
Jeff Sullivan: I’d never project the weird-ass Austin Jackson path

10:43
Jeff Sullivan: But I’d be comfortable projecting Jackson’s overall five-year performance

10:43
Alex: Travis Shaw or wilmer Flores?

10:43
Jeff Sullivan: Flores

10:44
Ant: AL/NL Rookies of the year will be ___________.

10:44
Jeff Sullivan: Benintendi is eligible, right? Andrew Benintendi in the AL

10:45
Jeff Sullivan: In the NL, I’m feeling some JP Crawford

10:45
Dudley: how do i talk the wife out of buying a trampoline?

10:46
Jeff Sullivan: Go to the nearest trampoline gym and observe the customers for one hour

10:46
Jeff Sullivan: Alternatively, go to the nearest emergency room and survey the patients for one hour

10:46
CarrotJuice: Sometimes I get scared thinking how close we came to electing a person who once used a private email server.

10:47
Jeff Sullivan: I send all of my correspondence by bird. Try and stop me, communists

10:48
Stuafoo: Care to predict the starting pitcher the Ms bring into the fold to round out their offseason?

10:48
Jeff Sullivan: Someone boring

10:48
Jeff Sullivan: Jason Vargas again? Sure, why not

10:49
CamdenWarehouse: So you’re saying I should save my pessimism for when the Orioles resign Trumbo to a four year contract?

10:49
Jeff Sullivan: Bidding against themselves!

10:49
Jeff Sullivan: Twice is nice!

10:50
Dr. Frank Jobe: Looking back, was there anything in Odubel Herrera’s profile in the minors that hinted towards him becoming the (currently, at least) quite good player he is today?

10:50
Jeff Sullivan: He hit well and ran fast between High-A and Double-A in 2014. With speed and limited strikeouts, you could already easily imagine a half-decent floor. He’s exceeded defensive projections, and he’s grown into some improved power

10:51
Jeff Sullivan: When Herrera really gets a baseball, he kills it. There’s more pop in there than his minor-league record would suggest

10:51
Andrés: True or False: David Peralta and Michael Conforto will help teams this year?

10:51
Jeff Sullivan: True

10:51
Jeff Sullivan: Hell, guaranteed to be true!

10:51
Jeff Sullivan: If you’re not helping your own team, you’re helping your own team’s opponent

10:51
Jeff Sullivan: Technicality!

10:52
Andrew: Your Kevin Pillar/Joey Votto article was awesome. Has anyone ever analyzed that idea of average v. peak exit velo before? Seems like a very useful tool for projecting younger players, no?

10:52
Jeff Sullivan: I think it’s a fun way of thinking about fairly standard ideas. “Raw power” is not a new concept. And efficient hitters are mostly line-drive hitters, who we mostly already know about

10:53
Jeff Sullivan: There’s ground to be gained, but probably not that much. I just like new thought processes

10:53
Bob Pollard: So in some of the Fangraphs chats, and sometimes in Keith Law’s chats, the phrase “Player X isn’t good” will be tossed out. Then I’ll look at some of the stats and think, hmm, this guy seems at least semi-good. A guy might have 30 HRs, have a decent OPS (.820) etc., and while the flaws can be easily identified (low OBP, high strikeouts), he’s called “not good.” I’m just wondering what the baseline is for “good” or at least not bad.

10:53
Jeff Sullivan: People have their own different definitions of “not good”

10:54
Jeff Sullivan: It has a very negative connotation. A lot of the time, people interpret “not good” as “bad”! But what it really means is not good — that being average or worse

10:54
Jeff Sullivan: I’d say that, as an overall baseball player, Mark Trumbo is not good. But I’d just mean I don’t think he’s a 3+ WAR player

10:55
Jeff Sullivan: And of course, as always, good or not good is in comparison to the other people who are the very best at this in the entire world

10:55
Jeff Sullivan: The worst major-league baseball player is impossibly good at baseball

10:55
Justino: Is this Josh Hamilton’s last chance?

10:55
Jeff Sullivan: I don’t even think there really is a chance

10:55
Jeff Sullivan: He just can’t seem to stay together. Burned bright, burned fast

10:56
Sean: Why don’t the mets keep bruce and trade grandy? I know they need him in cf but other teams prefer granderson so why not get a better return for him and save a couple mil? bruce is good for over 25 homers and 90 rbis, and lagares should get a chance to play more consistently.

10:56
Jeff Sullivan: Granderson is better, and the Mets don’t want to get worse

10:56
Tony: Chapman says he doesn’t agree how Maddon used him in the playoffs. Was he actually treated badly? I know he said he’s not comfortable pitching in non-traditional save situations, but this playoffs in particular it seemed more to be a trend in reliever usage that Maddon picked up on rather than a case of the Cubs abusing a rental (but maybe it was both).

10:57
Jeff Sullivan: It was a trend, and the whole league is picking up on it, but that doesn’t mean Chapman has to like it. He prefers what he prefers. Miller, Jansen, Allen — they’re more open-minded than Chapman is on this

10:57
Sandy Kazmir: I’ve yet to read any research on the synergies between good/bad pitchers/catchers as it relates to framing, but would love to hear your thoughts. Do good command pitchers see a bigger impact with good framers than bad command pitchers? Is it more linear? What does Jeff’s gut think?

10:58
Jeff Sullivan: I haven’t seen an exhaustive study, but the way I figure, good command + good framing work exceptionally well together. Look at Hendricks or Lester on the Cubs. A good-command pitcher can make a bad framer look better; a good framer can’t do much for a pitcher who’s wild

10:59
Jeff Sullivan: In short, pitcher identity is probably quite important for determining the strike zone he gets. Catchers need to have a chance, and if a pitcher misses his target by two feet, that would make even Buster Posey flinch

11:00
J: How do you feel about paying RPs nearly $20M?

11:00
Jeff Sullivan: I wouldn’t want to do it, but I would feel more comfortable giving $20 million to Kenley Jansen than $15 million to Mark Melancon

11:00
Alien Raines: Jeff. It pains me greatly to say this, but Curt Schilling is a HoFer. Tweets, ugly as they may be, should not change this. How do you feel about 8 writers so far invoking the “character clause” to keep him out?

11:01
Jeff Sullivan: I totally understand trying to find a reason to keep Schilling out, but I don’t understand actually believing and sticking to that reason. You can vote and hold your nose. It’s what so many of us are hoping for voters to do with PED guys

11:02
Jeff Sullivan: Schilling belongs. His performance deserves that honor. His personality deserves criticism elsewhere

11:03
Cicero: UZR Considers Chase Headley to be about .5WAR better on defense better than Nolan Arenado. DRS says Nolan is about 4WAR better than Headley in the same stretch. Knowing what you know which way do you lean?

11:03
Jeff Sullivan: I think that UZR is closer to the real answer

11:04
Jeff Sullivan: The actual separation is probably somewhere around 20 runs

11:04
Erik: Should the Phillies be locking up any other members of their young core, or do they all have too short or inconsistent track records to commit real money to?

11:04
Jeff Sullivan: I’d probably see how open Aaron Nola is to a long-term extension

11:05
Jeff Sullivan: He’s the one I like the most

11:05
Jeff Sullivan: Doubt there would be a point in extending Hernandez

11:06
Roadhog: Thoughts on the A’s potentially signing Edwin? I like it, kind of a ballsier re-do of the Butler deal, which would have been fine if Butler wasn’t both awful and lazy.

11:06
Jeff Sullivan: He’d work better on the Indians, who in theory should have no less flexibility. A’s should be less incentivized to go after a player who’s at his best right now, but then the A’s did charge hard for Chase Headley back when he was an FA. I don’t think it would be horrible if they got Encarnacion for something reduced

11:07
Nomo Lomo: Is it relatively reasonable to expect Robbie Cano to live up to or at least approach the value of his mega contract? If we assume an average of about $8mil per win over the 10 years, he’ll need around 30 total wins, and he’s almost half way there. Projections are down on him, but if the first half of 2015 stomach issue never comes back, it seems like a reasonable contract. Agree?

11:07
Jeff Sullivan: Cano is due $168 million over the next seven years

11:08
Jeff Sullivan: He projects to be worth something like $122 million

11:08
Jeff Sullivan: To this point he’s been “worth” $104 million over three years

11:09
Jeff Sullivan: 104 + 122 = $226 million. His actual contract is for $240 million. That’s close enough

11:09
Jeff Sullivan: Long and short of it: Cano is on track to be worth almost exactly the commitment

11:09
Jeff Sullivan: It’s just, well, the best years have gone to non-playoff teams. Bummer

11:09
Carlos: What would it take to pry Michael Conforto from the Mets?

11:09
Jeff Sullivan: A good and cost-controlled center fielder

11:10
Who, me?: Why do some teams (Mets, Blue Jays?) seem to always load up on pitching prospects when position players are more valuable?

11:10
Jeff Sullivan: It’s only equivalent position players who are more valuable than pitchers. Maybe they’re just finding better pitchers. And certain organizations and coaching staffs just have a preference for strong arms. Look at the Braves

11:10
Homer: Does Blake Swihart ever become an all star catcher?

11:10
Jeff Sullivan: Probably not

11:11
John: What metric best aligns to baseball player’s perceived talent of one another? In other words, are players themselves good at subjectively valuing their peers (from a scouting-type perspective)?

11:12
Jeff Sullivan: It really does vary player to player. Some players are very thoughtful. Others still think about batting average and ERA. By and large I’d say the veterans are pretty good at scouting, but I heard not long ago one of the smarter players in baseball still doesn’t think Kyle Hendricks is particularly good. So there are blind spots!

11:12
Dan: Should the Rockies trade away Brendan Rodgers for a pitcher like Quintana?

11:13
Jeff Sullivan: That would depend on how much more it took, but I don’t love Quintana in Colorado, by gut feeling

11:13
baby bull : Steroid guys have to get into HOF this year right? at least Bonds and Clemens, Friggen Bud Selig is in the HOF and he needed steroids in baseball more than anyone, which is why it was allowed for so long.

11:13
Jeff Sullivan: It’s going to happen. Maybe not this year, I don’t know, but it’s going to happen

11:14
Jeff Sullivan: Early indications are positive for Bonds and Clemens

11:15
George : Seeing as you’re the Angels cheerleader this offseason, are there any moves they could realistically make in order to help make your outlook on them a reality?

11:15
Jeff Sullivan: I think they could really use bullpen help. Blanton?

11:16
Andrew: What do you think about the murmurs re Zack Wheeler to the bullpen?

11:16
Jeff Sullivan: Going to have a strict innings limit anyway, and the bullpen could use some depth, especially with Familia likely to be suspended for a month+

11:17
D: Who do you see as the highest upside arms in the Dodgers system? And I’m sure you’ve done an article, but can you explain what entices you about Stewart? Thanks!

11:17
Jeff Sullivan: The Brock Stewart thing is really simple. Last year, between Double-A and Triple-A: 119 strikeouts, 17 walks, 110 innings

11:17
Jeff Sullivan: Straight-up scouting the stat line, but you basically can’t do that and suck

11:18
Jeff Sullivan: I can’t really speak to upside — I’m not a thorough organizational talent evaluator. But I really like De Leon, and I quite like Stewart

11:19
12 to 6: Should Derek Holland have worn a Greg Holland mask and marketed himself as a closer? Seems like that is where the money is this offseaon. Would he be able to succeed as a closer?

11:19
Jeff Sullivan: I don’t see him there. His isn’t an issue of eliminating peripheral pitches; he doesn’t have one single standout pitch to boost him in relief

11:19
Dominik: Could you see a match for profar to the Dodgers? They have a lot of sp

11:20
Jeff Sullivan: I don’t think they would like him much

11:20
Jake: You going for the marathon chat today? Gold star for you

11:20
Jeff Sullivan: I started slow and I feel guilty

11:20
z_er: is it an inevitability that Brandon Moss signs with the Orioles and slugs 40 homers?

11:20
Jeff Sullivan: He might go on the DL and end up at 30

11:20
JR: Who finishes last next year, and with how many wins?

11:21
Jeff Sullivan: White Sox have a decent shot if they keep selling and move cautiously with their new prospects. But I’ll say Padres, 64

11:21
Jeff Sullivan: The Reds will be close

11:22
Ryan: Based on some of your comments, I am struggling to figure out Quintana’s actual value on the trade market – his numbers lineup to put in him in the top 20 starters in baseball, but he is generally not perceived as an ace. Is a return of a top 25 prospect, a top 100 guy, plus 1 more in an organizations top 10 realistic?

11:22
Jeff Sullivan: Quintana has a bunch of value. In this chat, there’s just been a focus on getting him to Colorado. That makes me uneasy

11:22
Jill: Avi Garcia is not impossibly good at baseball.

11:22
Jeff Sullivan: Oh he sure is!

11:23
Jeff Sullivan: If you saw him playing ball at the neighborhood park, you’d be like, wow, that guy should not be playing ball here

11:23
Jeff Sullivan: in a good way

11:23
Dominik: Has the hr surge lowered the value of power only guys (trumbo, Frazier)?

11:23
Jeff Sullivan: I could buy that to a slight degree

11:23
Jeff Sullivan: The thing they do best is no longer so rare

11:23
Ryan: Follow up on Quintana, so do you think the White Sox’s reported Musgrove, Martes, and Tucker ask is justifiable or shooting the moon?

11:24
Jeff Sullivan: I think it’s justifiable, but I also think if they want a deal they would probably have to replace Musgrove with someone else

11:24
Chaps: Was the rumored asking price for Quintana from the Astros (Musgrove, Martes, & Tucker) a realistic haul? It seems like the Astros would be giving up too much.

11:24
Jeff Sullivan: Further on this — by talent, it makes sense. But Musgrove looks like a big-league starter now. Astros already have rotation questions, so they wouldn’t want to subtract to add

11:24
Sean: why aren’t angels a fit for quintana?

11:25
Jeff Sullivan: Literally nothing to trade for him

11:25
JBOII: Who has the higher ceiling: Odor or Bregman?

11:25
Jeff Sullivan: Bregman

11:25
Jeff Sullivan: Odor next year might not draw a single walk

11:25
Jeff Sullivan: Although he might curiously get beaned 20 times!

11:26
DTH: If you could create a player whose tools are all 40 except for one 80 tool, how good would that player be? and what tool would you choose to be the 80 to make the best possible player?

11:26
Jeff Sullivan: Well that’s basically Billy Hamilton, him having 80 speed.

11:26
Jeff Sullivan: He’s been worth 3.6 WAR per 600 PA

11:27
Jeff Sullivan: Someone with true 80 power would be valuable — like a better Mark Trumbo — but we already have the Hamilton skillset and it’s great

11:28
Phil: If Dodgers have Kershaw, Hill, Urias, Maeda, Wood as their top 5 SP options, that leaves Kazmir, McCarthy, DeLeon, Ryu, Stewart, and Stripling on the outside looking in. Which ones are wearing a different uniform come 2017?

11:28
Jeff Sullivan: I bet Kazmir and/or McCarthy get dumped

11:28
Alan: A ridiculous question: how good is MLB at finding MLB caliber players? Are amateur players ever missed? If 100% of the population were forced to practice baseball with the same intensity as MLB players, what percentage of the population is suddenly capable of competing with the rest of the league?

11:29
Jeff Sullivan: No idea on the second part. There are definitely good potential baseball players out there who don’t play baseball for whatever reason. But I have an example for the first part!

11:31
Jeff Sullivan: The league as a whole is good, but teams just can’t know about everybody. I heard a story at the winter meetings — not long ago I wrote an FG post about Jae-Gyun Hwang. After that post, four different teams reached out to his agent

11:31
Jeff Sullivan: Implying that, before that post, at least those four teams didn’t know about him, or didn’t think about him

11:31
Jeff Sullivan: And he’s one of the best players from the KBO!

11:31
Jeff Sullivan: So, there are blind spots

11:31
Jeff Sullivan: And that’s how I’m going to wrap this up

11:32
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 — 12/16/16 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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minisidd
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minisidd

No Proletariat in BRef, but swingman Mike “The Riot” Proly has Bourgeois beat with 8 WAR over 7 seasons and 267 appearances. (Nickname added…maybe.)

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/p/prolymi01.shtml