Scouting Reports Newsbeat
Thursday, January 02, 2014
Monday, November 25, 2013
Some great analysis by Fangraph’s Dan Farnsworth.
We wanted to see what evidence there was for or against another power outburst from Ellsbury going forward. My impression of his 2013 season is that he was never 100% healthy, and that was what disabled his power from showing up earlier and more frequently. Not even necessarily because of one specific physical problem, I don’t think he ever was able to get comfortable this year because of the nagging injuries. These mechanical issues were not big enough to ruin his season, but just enough to limit his power.
If he can get a few months of clear-minded at bats where he’s not worried about pain, I think he settles down enough to get his front foot down and let his hands work, bringing with it the home run power. That said, it’s not reasonable to expect perfect health based on his recent history, and because of that I would bet money on not seeing 30 home runs again. If he is able to get a few full seasons of plate appearances, I feel comfortable betting on a 20+ home run season or two, with the floor of a high AVG guy who plays great defense and steals a bunch of bags. Sign me up.
Wednesday, November 06, 2013
This is something which I’ve always been interested in seeing, a sabermetric scouting report. It’s not perfect but it’s a nice first step. Hopefully Fangraphs will find a way to incorporate something like this on their player pages.
Recently, for the electronic pages of Baseball America, Therron Brockish provided a scouting report from the Arizona Fall League on Boston third-base prospect Garin Cecchini. As part of that report, Brockish graded each of Cecchini’s tools on the 20-80 scale (or 2-8 scale, depending) commonly utilized by scouts, where 50 represents major-league average and every 10 points is equal roughly to a standard deviation from same.
The tools are useful as a concise but meaningful instrument by which to summarize a player’s strengths and weaknesses. Because most players in the baseball universe (including minor leaguers and amateurs, as well) are below major-league average, even a 50 grade is a pretty big deal. Cecchini, for his part, received a future grade of 70 on his hit tool from Brockish and about a 50, give or take five points, on the other four traditional tools (power, speed, fielding, arm).
Owing mostly to how Therron Brockish has 20 years of experience as a scout and how I, Carson Cistulli, have 20 years experience mostly in just feeling ashamed of myself, I have no interest, really, in commenting upon Brockish’s assessment of Cecchini. An exercise in futility, is what that would be. I’m well-enough acquainted with futility already that I don’t need to go seeking it out on purpose.
Nor are the particulars of his report really my concern for the moment. What is my concern is attempting to answer a question that has probably occurred to me somehwat vaguely in the past, but, for reasons that are mysterious, presented itself more clearly because of Brockish’s report. The quesion is this question: “If one takes for granted that Cecchini is likely to be a 70 hitter and a basically average everything-else, what does that mean in terms of his likely value so far as WAR is concerned?” Or, phrased more broadly: “Is it possible to ‘translate,’ as it were, all the grades for the five tools into a WAR value?”
What follows represents a mostly responsible attempt, I think, at answering those questions. Answers have been facilitated greatly by a rough WAR calculator of the author’s own invention, but constructed also with no little help from Bradley Woodrum’s De-Lucker. Note, finally, that I’ve used 550 plate appearances as the baseline for an offensive player, for this reason: a batter with league-average rates in everything and 550 plate appearances produces a 2.0 WAR — i.e. the sort of WAR generally associated with a league average player.
Posted: November 06, 2013 at 09:00 AM | 2 comment(s)
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