Jeff Sullivan FanGraphs Chat — 6/19/15

9:09
Jeff Sullivan: So let’s talk about baseball

9:09
Jeff Sullivan: Walk-off balks, anyone?

9:09
Comment From Rick Hahn
Send help.

9:10
Jeff Sullivan: It’s always interesting when something goes even more wrong than anyone could’ve expected. It would’ve been one thing to say the White Sox were going to be mediocre. But a historically bad assortment of position players? It’s a catastrophe.

9:10
Jeff Sullivan: Good luck!

9:11
Comment From Bren
How much of the Lagares injury affecting his defense explanation are you buying, if any?

9:11
Jeff Sullivan: Well, if his arm is compromised, it makes all the sense in the world his arm would be less effective, defensively. Don’t know what that would have to do with everything else. His bat is completely normal, so it’s not like Lagares overall has cratered.

9:12
Comment From JaysFan
Cueto and Chapman makes a lot of sense for the Jays…what does it cost? Norris and Pompey enough?

9:13
Jeff Sullivan: More like Norris and Hoffman. Which is obviously tremendously steep, but you’re talking about an ace starter and an ace reliever, so it’s not unreasonable if the Jays are satisfied that Cueto is healthy. Add those two and there’s no better team in the AL

9:14
Jeff Sullivan: It would be…bold. I can’t imagine trying to wrap my head around that as a Jays fan, but as an outside observer, it’d be amazing

9:14
Comment From Josh G
When do you see Papelbon getting traded? Isn’t his value higher now than ever?

9:15
Jeff Sullivan: Seems like interest is mounting and with the draft behind us, it’ll just be up to the Phillies sorting out how they want to go through the decision-making process. Two schools of thought here — Amaro could try to sell now, beating other sellers to the market, or he could try to hold out until the very last minute on July 31. I don’t think the latter would have much of a benefit

9:16
Comment From Northsider
At 6’0’’ 235 lbs, I think it’s fair to describe Schwarber as husky. The Cubs want to use him as a part-time C which means he’ll likely be in LF the rest of the time. Based on his size and projected 40 Speed, can you think of any similar LFs of that size and speed which have been successful defensive MLB players?

9:18
Jeff Sullivan: Sorry about that delay, elected to try to run a Play Index search

9:18
Jeff Sullivan: Jason Heyward is listed at 245 but that doesn’t seem to be a particularly good comparison…

9:19
Jeff Sullivan: The answer to your question is basically no. You’ve got Nelson Cruz and Carlos Quentin types. It’s possible to hack it, but it seems unlikely the player would be actually *good*

9:20
Comment From Jack Elliott
With the recent play of Carlos Correa, are the Astros serious contenders for the WS now?

9:21
Jeff Sullivan: No one in the American League is in a better playoff position at the moment, and once you’re in, you’re in. I still don’t think the Astros are actually a top-10 baseball team, but given their playoff odds, they have to be considered a legitimate threat

9:22
Comment From Xolo
Where do the Padres have to be by July 31st to not trade Justin Upton?

9:22
Jeff Sullivan: Within four or five of the wild card. So, where they are now, without losing more ground

9:23
Comment From Bobby
Hello Jeff, I hope you’re having a nice Friday. Do you think having a totally “lucky” i.e. way out of norms, not particularly explainable, first half makes somebody an all-star?

9:24
Jeff Sullivan: People have different definitions of what an All-Star is supposed to be. Which is their right — nowhere is it explicitly explained what the criteria are. For me, it’s part same-season performance, part track record, and part watchability. So this given player probably wouldn’t qualify, but I don’t actually vote for the All-Star players so who am I to give a shit?

9:24
Comment From Mike
Why are teams scouting Papelbon? Just covering their asses? Just because they pay MLB scouts, so why not? Can’t they just watch him on MLB.tv?

9:25
Jeff Sullivan: In the future, we probably won’t have nearly so many advance scouts as we have now, because everything will be monitored and it takes time to phase out what’s tradition, but for today it’s not like MLB.tv captures *everything* and when you have guys on the payroll you might as well use them

9:26
Comment From adam
Worried about Rosenthal?

9:26
Jeff Sullivan: I think he’s probably OK

9:26
Comment From Alex
I think the Pirates are going to finish with the third best record in baseball and lose their own division by five games. Can they catch STL?

9:27
Jeff Sullivan: They’re only four back, and they’re good. Don’t be discouraged!

9:27
Comment From Ember
Who should the Yankees kick from the rotation once Ivan Nova is back? I assume it’ll be Warren, but should it be?

9:27
Jeff Sullivan: Yeah, has to be Warren. Eovaldi is a project

9:29
Comment From Carney
Have you watched Tyler Lyons? 2.71 xFIP; 11.5K/9 but not getting a ton of attention.

9:30
Jeff Sullivan: It doesn’t really seem like he’s changed his command or hittability between the last few years, in Triple-A or in the majors, but he’s at least worth keeping an eye on. I assume the strikeouts are something of a fluke, but I won’t write him off entirely. Might’ve refined a secondary weapon

9:30
Comment From John Walsh
Hi Jeff, is an inside-out swing a real thing, or is it just a late swing that sends the ball to the opposite field? Any way to study the question? Thanks.

9:31
Jeff Sullivan: Well, you can have a swing where you lead with the barrel, or you can have a swing where you lead with your hands. With the latter, you generally also keep the hands tighter to the body, so, yeah, it’s a real thing. Think of it as sort of the conventional two-strike approach

9:32
Comment From Mike
Jeff, if during the next phase of evolution people become psychic will that be the end of baseball? Or is baseball amazing enough to still be relevant in that world?

9:33
Jeff Sullivan: I think you’d see developments crucial to the pitcher/hitter matchup. As people became more comfortable with their psychic abilities, they’d develop ways of “throwing off the scent,” so to speak, thinking about one thing as misdirection while doing another. So I think you could preserve the randomness and therefore the surprise

9:33
Jeff Sullivan: Upside of baseball and innate mind-reading: no more need for in-game interviews

9:36
Comment From Bret
What’s up with Jeff Samardzija? Anything? He seems to have gone back to underperforming his FIP by a wide margin again this year. Also, his ground ball rates have fallen quite a bit.

9:37
Jeff Sullivan: He’s throwing a different slider, he’s replaced some sinkers with cutters, he’s less successful burying his splitter, and he has a bad defense behind him. He still has No. 1-quality stuff, which makes him so appealing, but yeah, this is a step back

9:38
Comment From Ras
You once mentioned in a chat that you disliked when someone used the phrase “market efficiency” regarding team development. Why is that?

9:38
Jeff Sullivan: I’m not sure I know what you’re talking about, but I *have* grown sick of the term “market inefficiency.” The window for Moneyball jokes has closed.

9:40
Comment From CarlC
Do you like what you see from Franco so far, or do you think hell be just a so-so player going forward?

9:41
Jeff Sullivan: I don’t love that he doesn’t walk and that he rates poorly on batted-ball leaderboards, but he’s also still brand-new and it’s hard to hold anyone responsible for anything as a member of that lineup. Franco has made real gains compared to 2014, in approach and contact, and I think he’s now become a big-league regular. I don’t think he’s a star, but he’s a building block

9:41
Comment From jordan
What do we make of the A’s? Good Run differential, Good starting pitching, good offense. The one run game losses are amazing.

9:42
Jeff Sullivan: Decent team crippled by bad timing. Not that it’s *all* been bad luck, but the A’s have been one of the least lucky teams in recent memory, and at this point it’s probably too late to recover without a miracle. Bummer for Beane, but he probably likes the challenge of it

9:43
Comment From Greg
There are currently 4 NL teams with better WS odds than the best AL team. Do you think the NL is this much stronger or do you expect things to even out as the season progresses?

9:43
Jeff Sullivan: The NL is more divided between the haves and the have-nots. The good teams are obvious. They’re less obvious in the AL, and because there’s such a jumble, no one has awesome odds of reaching the playoffs, so no one has awesome odds of winning it all

9:44
Comment From Philip
Do you find the Cardinals “hacking” scandal interesting?

9:44
Jeff Sullivan: It’s extremely interesting, although it becomes less interesting if it’s just a case of a rogue low-level employee or two flexing his muscles. The most interesting case would be if this went all the way toward the top, but that’s not likely, and that would also be bad for baseball

9:44
Comment From Dave
Is there any scenario where the Reds would eat enough of Votto’s contract and trade him?

9:45
Jeff Sullivan: In the offseason, sure

9:45
Comment From Greg
If you’re the White Sox, do you trade Sale this season?

9:45
Jeff Sullivan: Nope!

9:45
Comment From Guest
how does Chi Chi Rodriguez dominate every start despite having AA-caliber stuff?

9:45
Jeff Sullivan: He has 10 strikeouts in 30 innings

9:46
Comment From Alen
Samardzija (1.5 seasons of control and Hammel) got Addison Russell. While it won’t happen, what’s a “fair” return for Chris Sale? Sale has two years guaranteed at $21 million total, with two options years at $12.5 and $13.5 with one million dollar buyouts for each.

9:47
Jeff Sullivan: You’re talking about a top-5 or top-10 trade asset. Basically nothing would be off-limits

9:49
Comment From Erich
How much do you buy the “Hanley Ramirez isn’t trying” idea? He has been really bad at left field, no doubt, but can you become a professional baseball player if you’re the sort of person to not try? On a related note, don’t you love Boston media suggesting a Hanley-Jonny Gomes trade, because GRIT and INTANGIBLES?

9:50
Jeff Sullivan: It’s not like this would be a new thing for Hanley — this rep has followed him for years, and now it’s back with a vengeance after a period of supposed “rejuvenation” in Los Angeles. I think it’s an exaggeration to suggest that Hanley isn’t trying, but I doubt it’s an exaggeration to suggest he isn’t the most self-motivated player in the game. He has the physical talent to coast and he’s not the only such player

9:51
Jeff Sullivan: Hanley, though, isn’t the whole reason the team sucks. Maybe he’s not a fit for the club, but it’s not as simple as saving the season by dumping Hanley on someone else.

9:51
Comment From Doug
Assuming the Sox can’t trade Hanley, how long will they keep him in LF? It’s an expensive thought, but he may have to settle for backup DH until Ortiz retires.

9:52
Jeff Sullivan: They can’t make him a backup. The next attempt would be 1B

9:52
Comment From Sean
A month or so ago, I asked you if Goldschmidt could have a .330 season. You were skeptical. Now, he’s batting .363 and ZiPS has him finishing just under .330 on the season. I’m not trying to show you up, just marvel in what has so far been an amazing season to watch from Goldy.

9:52
Jeff Sullivan: He’s almost singlehandedly kept the Diamondbacks ever so quietly relevant

9:53
Jeff Sullivan: The team we mostly wrote off is four games out of the wild card. Granted, they’re also two under .500, but they’re right there with the Padres and Nationals. Not bad

9:54
Comment From Scranton
What would you do this trade season if you ran the Pirates? A RH for the 1B platoon and bullpen depth seem most likely, but what could be done if they went big?

9:55
Jeff Sullivan: If they went big, you’re talking about a really good starting pitcher. But such a pitcher would be unnecessary, and, yeah, they’ll settle for minor upgrades. They don’t need much help

9:55
Comment From MotorboatJones
Are the Cubs really not going to find a place for Schwarber if he keeps this up?

9:55
Jeff Sullivan: Even if they demoted him in a few days, they could just bring him right back in a few weeks.

9:57
Comment From mtsw
Jays trading prospects for a starting pitcher sounds appealing, but if they had kept Syndergaard instead of trading for Dickey they’d be in better shape today.

9:57
Jeff Sullivan: Sure, but what if it’d been, say, Kyle Drabek instead?

9:58
Jeff Sullivan: Sometimes a trade works and sometimes it doesn’t. The goal is to find that balance where the probabilities on both sides are mostly even

9:58
Comment From Catoblepas
Jeff, whatever new gif program you’re using is a huge improvement. Your articles actually load for me now at work!

9:58
Jeff Sullivan: Carson inadvertently introduced me to Streamable, and I love it. Better for everybody

9:59
Comment From Jack Elliott
In this seller’s market, who is the first to buy or make a big trade for Cueto, Chapman, Hamels, Papelbon, Gomez or someone else?

9:59
Jeff Sullivan: I feel like the A’s might get to the market first and sell Zobrist or Kazmir to whoever wants. Maybe Kazmir first

10:00
Comment From Andrew
2 related questions on Hanley / Pablo. 1) Which contract will produce more value over the lifetime of the contract? 2) which contract will look worse at the end?

10:00
Jeff Sullivan: Hanley’s three years older than Pablo is, so I gotta give the edge to Sandoval here

10:02
Comment From mtsw
The Orioles have a bazillion 4th outfielder types who are out of options. How do they solve the roster crunch? It’s especially tough because the most marginal guys (Paredes, Lough, Snider) are the guys with additional years of team control remaining. Is there a trade market for any of them?

10:03
Jeff Sullivan: There’s not a strong trade market for outfielders in the middle of a roster crunch. There would be a strong trade market for outfielders too good to be caught in a roster crunch. I don’t think you need to worry about losing, say, Chris Parmelee

10:03
Comment From Will
Seriously though, what’s the point of staying up late to watch a game for three hours if it can end because someone flinches?

10:05
Jeff Sullivan: For one thing, the game is about more than the result. And for another, embrace the strategy of it. Hernandez took off from third and Kela got baited. It was sort of the point. Like a lineman drawing an opposite lineman offside in a football game. I know it’s sort of anti-climactic, but I’m not sure it’s any worse than a lame walk-off sac fly or something. Game’s gotta end; this one’s in the rules

10:05
Comment From CarlC
Will Ketel Marte be starting at SS for the Ms on opening day 2016?

10:05
Jeff Sullivan: no

10:05
Comment From MSW
Should the Cubs send down Schwarber?

10:05
Jeff Sullivan: for a little while

10:07
Comment From Guest
Hi Jeff, what do you make of Machado’s power surge this season? Is it possible he settles into a 25-30 HR guy going forward?

10:07
Jeff Sullivan: He’s become more disciplined, more willing to wait for his pitch, and he’s still a few weeks short of turning 23. I don’t know if he’ll be a 30-homer guy, since that depends on how many of his line drives clear the fence instead of hit the top of it, but this is Machado blossoming

10:08
Comment From Houzer
what kind of a deal do you think Heyward catches in the off-season, and will it be from the Cardinals?

10:08
Jeff Sullivan: At this point I can’t stop thinking about the Adrian Beltre pillow contract. We’ll see about Heyward’s second half, but I think it’s increasingly likely. And if the market sees that Heyward is available for one season, it might price the Cardinals out

10:10
Comment From Ralph
Hie Jeff, aside from bad luck, what’s the problem with Gio Gonzalez? Think he turns back to his sorta good self?

10:11
Jeff Sullivan: It would appear he’s making an effort to be more of a groundball pitcher, and that sort of thing is conscious. He’s replacing four-seamers with two-seamers, and this is a new stage for him, and it’s not like he’s ever had outstanding command. You could choose to be comforted by this:

2013: 93 xFIP-
2014: 92
2015: 93

10:13
Comment From Joel Vs. the Volcano
Hello Jeff, I try hard not be cynical, but I think there is a real possibility that the Mariners get swept by the ‘Stros this weekend. If that happens, they’ll be 10 games under .500, and 12.5 GB. (I know the 2nd wildcard exists, but…) Would the M’s brass be wise to be honest with themselves and consider themselves sellers at that point. Or does Jack Z know that he needs to be in the playoffs to avoid having security escort him to the door — therefore, he’ll entertain any trade to make the club better short term?

10:13
Jeff Sullivan: Here’s the problem: what do you sell?

10:14
Jeff Sullivan: J.A. Happ, I guess. Maybe a reliever or two. Austin Jackson. But it’s not like there’s a prospect bounty coming back. Maybe if Iwakuma were healthy and effective, but that’s not the case at the moment

10:15
Comment From Philip
What do you find the most interesting about the Cardinals “hacking” scandal?

10:15
Jeff Sullivan: The precedent this’ll set

10:15
Comment From Ira
Steven Souza walked 5 times in a nine inning game and doesn’t even get a mention on FG? What gives?

10:15
Jeff Sullivan: There’s the mention

10:16
Comment From Catoblepas
The ads on articles have been getting a lot worse recently, with autoplaying videos and things that make pages load slowly or pull you away from the article. Has there been any discussion of a subscription for ad-free viewing? I would pay a substantial amount to not feel bad about using an ad blocker. Literally twice while typing this I’ve been pulled to the bottom of the page for a Starbucks ad about iced tea.

10:17
Jeff Sullivan: The worst ads tend to be mistakes and we try to get rid of those. There shouldn’t be auto-playing videos (ever! on the internet!). We don’t want to ever have a paywall system because it doesn’t work and it isn’t our model, but to be honest I’m not really involved in these conversations so I don’t know where Appelman might be leaning. The ad model has worked; we just need to maintain the right sorts of ads

10:18
Comment From Wish Xander was Correa
Chances Correa has a WRC+ greater then 120 plus 15 steals for the rest of the season? Over 75%?

10:18
Jeff Sullivan: That’s way too high

10:18
Comment From Jonny
Over/under 40 swings/misses in the Pirates/Nationals game on Saturday. Pitching matchup is Scherzer vs. Liriano

10:18
Jeff Sullivan: Over

10:19
Comment From AJ Preller
Everyone I traded is doing well this season and now the Braves are calling up Wisler. How bad did I mess up this winter?

10:19
Jeff Sullivan: If it weren’t for the Kemp trade, you’d almost still be in a decent position

10:20
Comment From Philip
Who would you like to see play in an all-star game who isn’t an all-star by most standards?

10:20
Jeff Sullivan: The answer is Munenori Kawasaki, but really I still wouldn’t bother to watch

10:22
Comment From 1999 Gold Glover Rafael Palmeiro
I was referencing FG and BRef for batted ball data this morning and BABIP was slightly different for the 6 pitchers I looked at. Do you know why?

10:23
Jeff Sullivan: Some minor data inconsistency. Can’t explain it but the formula should be simple. Doing things manually, as a quick check, looks like BR might be more accurate

10:24
Jeff Sullivan: But when you’re talking about a difference of one or two points, it doesn’t really matter. I’ll ask Appelman a little later

10:25
Comment From Mookie Monster
Do you think if Red Sox offered to pay the last 2 years of Pandas contract teams would be interested? How would that affect luxury tax?

10:25
Jeff Sullivan: Yeah, teams would be interested in a discount Sandoval

10:27
Jeff Sullivan: As for the second part, I can’t pretend to understand all the ins and outs of the luxury-tax rules off the top of my head. Crowdsource!

10:27
Comment From HVC
Pretty sure that I have seen you mention that, despite overtures from teams and better money, you would not want to work in baseball due to the (monumental) decrease in quality of life. No real question other than the perfunctory, “Is there anything (position, team, challenge – read: figuring out how to win in Colorado) that could get you to change that stance?” Thanks for the chats.

10:28
Jeff Sullivan: To be clear, I’ve interviewed, but I’ve never been approached, and I’ve certainly never been offered better money. And the interviews were years ago; my mindset has changed since, to the point where, yeah, I don’t want to work in the game.

10:30
Jeff Sullivan: Maybe I’d be open to it if I got to stay in the northwest, which I guess means just Seattle. It would absolutely be an interesting experience, and there’s a lot of new data in the game. It would be a fun personal project and I’d get to feel like work is a daily exploration. But the best compromise might be part-time consulting. And there, more realistically, it would be with a player, not with a team

10:33
Comment From ryan
Will Smith seems like a logical trade target for teams looking for lefty help. What type of prospects do you think it’ll take to get him?

10:35
Jeff Sullivan: Well, Smith isn’t as good as 2014 Andrew Miller, but he’s under control a lot longer, so it’s not a terrible comp. You could be looking at something like Eduardo Rodriguez, understanding that Rodriguez suddenly started pitching a lot better just after the trade to Boston

10:35
Comment From Greg
Do you think Starlin Castro will rebound at all?

10:35
Jeff Sullivan: Yep

10:35
Comment From John Wasdin
When will MLB turn the Wild Card game into a three-game series? As a Pirates fan, I’m not looking forward to the possibility of a third consecutive one-game playoff.

10:36
Jeff Sullivan: The one-game playoff model works, a three-game series isn’t necessarily any more “fair”, and baseball doesn’t want to make the other teams wait for too long

10:37
Comment From Catoblepas
Do you think you would be writing about baseball if you had a day job? Would you maintain analysis as well as fandom as a hobby?

10:37
Jeff Sullivan: Well, before this was a day job, I had a different day job, during which I wrote about baseball. So I’d probably do it, if my day job were as easy as that one was. Here’s to lab techs everywhere

10:38
Comment From Will
It’s not even about the end result. There’s nothing about the balk rule that makes what Kela did productive to the game. Also, the point of a balk is to prevent a pitcher from tricking a runner, why should a runner be able to trick a pitcher into a balk?

10:39
Jeff Sullivan: Not going to argue with you on principle — that was a ridiculous way for a game to end. But it was also legitimate, according to the rules, so that’s just where we are. I get why there has to be some kind of balk rule. I’m not sure we’ve perfected it.

10:41
Comment From Sean
Can you see the Diamondbacks as contenders as soon as next year? Their position players rank pretty highly in both fWAR (5th) and bWAR (2nd) in the NL and are very young. And they have tons of MLB-close pitching prospects. If their pitching develops a bit more, they have to be in the contending conversation next year, right?

10:41
Jeff Sullivan: They need a lot of pitching, but they have a lot of pitching talent on paper within the system, so yeah, next year they could hang around the wild card a bit more than they’re going to this year. They’re not going to be close to winning the division, but they have a chance provided they don’t squander their resources

10:42
Comment From Sean
How did you come up with the idea of the Goldschmidt Dinger Test? That turned into a pretty cool, interactive post.

10:42
Jeff Sullivan: When you write all the time, you get sick of writing the usual player analyses. Goldschmidt basically needed to be written about but I felt like there had to be a twist because otherwise it’s always the same post, with different names and slightly different graphs

10:43
Comment From mtsw
A friend of mine’s little brother is trying to decide between perusing baseball scouting (he played 4 years of college ball) and becoming a police officer. They both sound like terrible jobs. How can my friend convince him to go to law school instead?

10:44
Jeff Sullivan: He could suggest umpiring as a compromise between baseball and the police

10:44
Comment From Matthew
Re: The walk-off balk – I guess I can understand Will’s frustration from one point of view, but on the other hand…isn’t a walk-off balk part of what makes baseball crazy, in a good way? I’m going t to remember how I laughed while watching this one, and that’s worth something. You can’t get those moments out of a lot of other sports.

10:44
Jeff Sullivan: While I think it’s the kind of thing that’s more enjoyable in theory than in reality, it is absolutely memorable. As long as it doesn’t get out of control, it’s fine to have every few months or years

10:45
Comment From Jay29
Jeff, where are the Updated projections on player pages (e.g., “Steamer (U)”)? I really miss them!

10:46
Jeff Sullivan: Probably just trying to keep from adding additional clutter. Which is funny, given how massive the player pages are…but you can still go here http://www.fangraphs.com/pr…

10:46
Comment From Yello
Harper down again with injury while it seems Trout is never injured… is one just overly lucky or one just overly unlucky? Who is closer to “normal” in terms of a young player injury rate?

10:46
Jeff Sullivan: Harper has a mild strain. Might cost him a day or two, because he lost his footing on a wet surface. I don’t think this is anything to worry about

10:47
Comment From Ajax
I don’t a lot of young ML pitchers or prospects throwing the split-finger fastball or the forkball anymore. I hardly ever hear those pitched mentioned during games, furthermore. Is this my imagination, or are teams moving away from those pitches. I can think of several young pitchers who might benefit from them.

10:47
Jeff Sullivan: Generally speaking, teams are afraid that splitters carry a heightened injury risk. Doesn’t mean it’s true, but it only has to be thought to be true

10:48
Comment From Greg
Why don’t fans typically treat unsustainable performances by rookies and established players with the same skepticism?

10:48
Jeff Sullivan: People think of rookies as starting with a blank slate, even though they have minor-league track records. For the veterans, there’s a whole history to keep in mind

10:48
Comment From The Oriole Bird
It’s hard to think of a less exciting milestone than the one Markakis surpassed last night: 393 straight games without an error.

10:49
Jeff Sullivan: He deserves a celebratory off-brand ginger ale, to be opened at home, surrounded by no one.

10:49
Comment From Relsh
Do you expect Alex Guerrero to be traded this season?

10:49
Jeff Sullivan: Nope. Because of his contract, he has very little value to other teams, relative to his value to the Dodgers

10:49
Comment From Phil
Is Capp’s delivery the coolest you’ve ever seen? I honestly can’t get my head around how you maintain that consistency of motion and delivery.

10:50
Jeff Sullivan: It’s awesome. I thought Walden was weird. Capps is weirder. Don’t know how he does it. If you didn’t see Ben Lindbergh’s piece from the other day, Capps’ delivery gives him the highest average perceived velocity in baseball

10:50
Jeff Sullivan: Even higher than Chapman

10:50
Comment From Willie
Help me understand how ROS value is projected – if a guy is a perennial .300 hitter but is hitting .250 at the end of June – do we expect him to hit .350 ROS so he once again is a .300 hitter for the season? Or do we just expect that the best he will do is go back to being a .300 hitter for the ROS? Thanks

10:51
Jeff Sullivan: The latter. The former is the gambler’s fallacy. If you have a guy who’s a natural .300, then at any point, he should be projected for .300 moving forward.

10:51
Comment From DTSS
They’re not just auto-playing either. You can’t stop them. They take forever to load and you can sometimes hit pause, but then then soon they switch to showing a new video. Really bad and this isn’t an every-so-often thing.

10:52
Jeff Sullivan: I’ll make a note to talk to Appelman. He is receptive to things that are really stupidly annoying

10:52
Comment From Jerry
What would you do if you were the White Sox? Obv not contenders/buyers, but they don’t really have much to sell. Would you consider trading players like Sale or Abreu? How do they turn this around?

10:53
Jeff Sullivan: You move Samardzija and you try again for next year. The issue was always that the White Sox had a core, but not enough around it. That’s how things have played out. They still have that core and they’re not far away. They just need more help than they were able to find overnight

10:53
Comment From C
What’s the next logical step for the Jays, considering they need pitching help ? Should any prospect be off the table here?

10:54
Jeff Sullivan: It’s up to them how high they want to aim. They could try for a Cueto or Hamels, or they could try for a Kazmir and pay a good deal less.

10:54
Comment From Joel Vs. the Volcano
Did you ever go hiking on the Olympic Peninsula?

10:54
Jeff Sullivan: Yeah, I recommend it

10:54
Comment From David
Jays ought to get Neise or Kazmir.

10:54
Jeff Sullivan: Or both

10:55
Comment From Danny Valencia
I should be playing fulltime right?

10:55
Jeff Sullivan: Heavens no

10:55
Comment From TKDC
If he’s looking for a pillow, does Heyward become the first player to accept a QO?

10:56
Jeff Sullivan: Interesting. Definitely possible. Other teams might not want to give up a draft pick for a one-year player

10:56
Comment From Kimchi Kisses
Is there a type/sort of player you find interesting and want to write about?

10:56
Jeff Sullivan: Player who seem to have made changes. I love analyzing how players change

10:56
Comment From C
Would a package of Kazmir/Reddick/Clippard be at all reasonably attainable?

10:56
Jeff Sullivan: Absolutely

10:56
Comment From Ben
Greg Holland is walking twice as many batters and striking out half as many. What’s his deal?

10:57
Jeff Sullivan: Worse fastball velocity and command. Hopefully not more than that. It’s possible his mechanics are off as a consequence of earlier injury

10:58
Comment From Redstorm
What would you do if you were the Twins? Assuming they’re still in contention at the deadline

10:58
Jeff Sullivan: Kazmir. I know there are other pitchers available, but I keep thinking about Kazmir

10:58
Comment From Jack Elliott
I agree with you that Kazmir will go first and come much cheaper than Cueto or Hamels. Does that mean some team may overpay to get Kazmir rather than risk paying the high price for Cueto or Hamels?

10:59
Jeff Sullivan: Kazmir might get a slightly higher price for getting moved earlier than the other guys, thereby being available to make more starts for the new team

11:00
Comment From 20longyears
Obviously the Pirates pitching is not THIS good, but how good are they? They appear to have a really strong top 3 and some high quality relievers.

11:00
Jeff Sullivan: Good rotation front, good bullpen, good catcher, good defense, good system. Everything’s there.

11:00
Jeff Sullivan: They could use one more starter, but they’re in a good place already

11:01
Comment From Jonny
The pirates need to upgrade on Corey Hart as the platoon 1B. What would it take to get Baker from the Marlins? A semi-interesting reliever?

11:01
Jeff Sullivan: A cup

11:01
Jeff Sullivan: Any cup

11:01
Comment From John F. Kennedy
Should I be worried about Pedroia’s knee

11:01
Jeff Sullivan: Yes

11:01
Comment From Guesto
Is Domingo Santana here to stay?

11:01
Jeff Sullivan: No, but he will be a big-leaguer

11:02
Comment From Tommy
How soon until Buxton makes his adjustments? Did the Twins rush him and get caught up in the prospect call up game?

11:02
Jeff Sullivan: They did rush him, but the hope is that he’s good enough to help right away while he gets familiar. It’s better than overpaying for external help. This and Santana are kind of the Twins’ big mid-season upgrades

11:04
Comment From John F. Kennedy
Jeff, this is a moral question: in a trade situation, do I have a responsibility to inform the other party of a health problem? Say I agree to a trade involving Dustin Pedroia…should I let them know that Pedroia is currently having knee problems, or is the due diligence on them?

11:05
Jeff Sullivan: Took me a while to track this down:

11:05
11:06
Jeff Sullivan: “But in a 14-page decision, Selig bluntly told the Blue Jays, “Buyer beware.”

In other words, with Sirotka’s shoulder already ailing, Toronto should have fully checked out the pitcher before making the trade Jan. 14.”

11:06
Jeff Sullivan: Players get physicals. It’s up to the buyer. Although in the Pedroia case, it’s publicly known that he has a knee problem, so it’s not like that’s a team secret that could be withheld

11:07
Comment From Ben
Why did the Mariners move on from Chris Young when he was such an obviously good fit? Did they not think he could repeat 2014?

11:07
Jeff Sullivan: That, and how he wore down. And how he insisted on a major-league contract for a while

11:07
Jeff Sullivan: Obviously looks bad in hindsight

11:09
Comment From Kimchi Kisses
I never understood how a batter got a do-over if the inning ends with a caught stealing. But, It’s 2 outs,man on 1st, and it’s Barry Bonds in his prime, 0-2 count. Is there any value in the runner being caught stealing on purpose (giving up an out) to basically give Bonds another AB the next inning?

11:09
Jeff Sullivan: Prime Barry Bonds was still really good after 0-and-2 counts. So, no, you don’t make the automatic out, because that gives up an out and a baserunner just to give Bonds a couple fewer strikes

11:09
Comment From Stark
Does FG have anything like K%+? Where you can compare a player strikeouts to the league average rate to compare strikeouts over different periods?

11:09
Jeff Sullivan: Unfortunately no, but we’ve asked Appelman about this on a few occasions

11:10
Comment From Ben
Will Franklin Gutierrez ever play in the majors again?

11:10
Jeff Sullivan: Not in any meaningful sense

11:10
Comment From C
What makes certain players more “injury-prone” than others? We often say that injuries are more a function of bad luck than anything else, but ever so often, there are particular players who seem to be injured more than you’d expect (Brandon Morrow, Josh Johnson, Brett Anderson?). Could their workout or diet regime be a factor here, or is it just because some bodies break down more easily?

11:10
Jeff Sullivan: Not every body is equally durable. Some guys have weaker muscles or connective tissues.

11:12
Comment From Guy
Do we know the location of all active volcanos in the world?…or are several believed to be unknown?

11:12
11:12
Comment From Matt
Why is isn’t there any way from the FG home page to get to a team’s current stat page? It really is infuriating.

11:12
Jeff Sullivan: Hover over “Standings”

11:12
Comment From Ben
Follow-up on Chris Young: he’ll face the same situation going into 2016 season, does he get a contract this time?

11:12
Jeff Sullivan: If he stays this good and this healthy

11:13
Comment From Ben
Mike Zunino is incapable of seeing a pitch and relies entirely on guessing. Did the Mariners permanently brain-damage him at the plate because they needed him up so soon?

11:13
Jeff Sullivan: They rushed him. There’s no telling what permanent damage that did — maybe this is just him — but he was rushed. If they had a better second catcher, he’d be back in the minors.

11:14
Comment From Justin
Why would a good pitcher for the Pirates be unnecessary? Yes, they have a great team ERA, but Jeff Locke remains one of the few easily upgradable players on the team. Gotta improve to catch the Cards somehow, right?

11:14
Jeff Sullivan: It’s more like they already have three good starters, so as you look toward the postseason, one more good starter isn’t truly needed.

11:14
Jeff Sullivan: All right, I need to get rolling!

11:15
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 — 6/19/15 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.

newest oldest most voted
Hank G.
Member
Hank G.

I think you’d see developments crucial to the pitcher/hitter matchup. As people became more comfortable with their psychic abilities, they’d develop ways of “throwing off the scent,” so to speak, thinking about one thing as misdirection while doing another.

So, guys would think about sex while playing baseball?

Paul
Guest
Paul

Guys already do that.