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Thursday, August 10, 2017

It’s Do Or Die For Dansby Swanson

Do or die?

Jim Furtado Posted: August 10, 2017 at 10:46 AM | 63 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: braves, dansby swanson

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   1. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 10, 2017 at 10:54 AM (#5510417)
Do or die?

That's one way to motivate players.
   2. Rally Posted: August 10, 2017 at 11:01 AM (#5510425)
That's how the Mayans produced championship basketball teams.
   3. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: August 10, 2017 at 11:04 AM (#5510427)
It’s Do Or Die For Dansby Swanson

CRISIS YEAR FOR CHOO-CHOO COLEMAN

- SPORT magazine article, ca. 1963
   4. There are no words... (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: August 10, 2017 at 11:05 AM (#5510429)
That's a wee bit extreme, no?
   5. Accent Shallow is doin' the catapult Posted: August 10, 2017 at 11:05 AM (#5510430)
The URL is even more direct.
   6. Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine Posted: August 10, 2017 at 11:07 AM (#5510432)
The URL is even more direct.


And people say the Boston media is tough.
   7. Tim D Posted: August 10, 2017 at 11:14 AM (#5510436)
Back away from the edge. So Swanson isn't going to be Chipper Jones. You will have to live with a .750 OPS excellent defense SS. Oh darn.
   8. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 10, 2017 at 11:18 AM (#5510437)
You will have to live with a .750 OPS excellent defense SS. Oh darn.

Where's the evidence that he's that good at the plate? His high minor league numbers are not stellar.

2016 AA: 377 PA 261/342/402 117 wRC+, 2017 AAA: 45 PA 237/356/342 103 wRC+.
   9. jmurph Posted: August 10, 2017 at 11:53 AM (#5510457)
Sure but they had to move on from that all glove, no bat Andrelton Simmons, who is putting up a measly *squints at computer screen* oh, huh.
   10. The Duke Posted: August 10, 2017 at 12:09 PM (#5510464)
I never thought that Miller trade was the worst trade. The D-backs had a three year window with goldschmidt. This year kind of highlights why that trade made sense for them. If they had a healthy Miller they would be a clear WS candidate. Shelby was likely broken when they got him or broke shortly thereafter. Pitchers get hurt.

The trade was an overpay but they knew that.
   11. The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: August 10, 2017 at 12:34 PM (#5510481)
So Swanson isn't going to be Chipper Jones. You will have to live with a .750 OPS excellent defense SS. Oh darn.


Even if he can claw his way back to a 750 OPS, his defense was also running-#### atrocious prior to the demotion. The "do or die" nature of the headline isn't so much about how long you give a 23 year old to figure out how to hit ML pitching (or learn something in AAA,) but more due to the fact that team has two other options - Johan Camargo and Ozzie Albies - they believe can provide equal value at SS.
   12. PreservedFish Posted: August 10, 2017 at 12:39 PM (#5510484)
It was interesting that he was a top top prospect despite lacking top top skills.
   13. Rally Posted: August 10, 2017 at 12:57 PM (#5510516)
I never thought that Miller trade was the worst trade. The D-backs had a three year window with goldschmidt. This year kind of highlights why that trade made sense for them. If they had a healthy Miller they would be a clear WS candidate. Shelby was likely broken when they got him or broke shortly thereafter. Pitchers get hurt.


If it had been a one for one deal, it's a bad trade, but defensible because of the timeline. But Inciarte in the deal makes it so bad that it's memorable. Inciarte was more valuable than Miller the season before the trade. And as a non-pitcher, a better bet not to get hurt and keep that value. By WAR, Inciarte's first 3 seasons were better than Miller's best season. This year he's hitting at his usual numbers, but looks like the new park in ATL is another launching pad so while the raw OPS hasn't changed, OPS+ is down from 98 to 92. Anyway, Inciarte is at 2.5 WAR right now so still has a good chance to end up around 3.5, which is as good as Shelby Miller ever was.

Sure, the D-Backs are having a good year and they would look better with a healthy Miller in the rotation. They would also look a lot better with Ender playing left field, as they have gotten below replacement production from the spot (at least up to the Martinez trade). It's so bad they've had to play Daniel Descalso out there.
   14. Rally Posted: August 10, 2017 at 01:01 PM (#5510523)
D-Backs worst performing starter is Pat Corbin with a 98 ERA+. I guess they could have used him or Miller in the bullpen or something, but as an addition to the team Inciarte would clearly be the better fit.
   15. bfan Posted: August 10, 2017 at 01:21 PM (#5510558)
They would also look a lot better with Ender playing left field


But I thought most of Ender's value is his glove, in CF-does that get reduced, in LF? I love the guy and I am happy to have him on my team as a CF, but he is the emptiest .300 hitter you are going to find (reserving judgment on HRs until after this year is over, so we have some context), and I do not think that batting profile plays in LF, on a good team.
   16. The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: August 10, 2017 at 01:28 PM (#5510564)
Inciarte is a useful piece. He's not the core you build a champion around.

Dansby Swanson could become a useful piece. He's not the core you build a champion around.

The best thing the Braves have, by current performance, to that core piece, is Ronald Acuna. There's a lot of hype around Kevin Maitan as well, but he's like six games into rookie ball as a 12 year old or something.
   17. Rally Posted: August 10, 2017 at 01:40 PM (#5510576)
But I thought most of Ender's value is his glove, in CF-does that get reduced, in LF?


Sure, fewer chances, so the value is reduced a bit. But he'd still be a very good player. Look at what the Diamondbacks have used in LF this year. Yasmany Tomas was terrible, then hurt. Descalso, Blanco, Herrmann. All four of those guys are under replacement level for the year. Their combined defensive runs at the position is -11, and that's with "hitting" 229/304/376.

Playing Ender in left field instead of center is not the best way to maximize his value. Maybe he's a 3.2 WAR player there instead of 3.5, but that would be a massive upgrade to the team over what they had been getting.
   18. Lassus Posted: August 10, 2017 at 01:41 PM (#5510578)
Boy, that was a whirlwind romance. Did he at least let you in his pants?

Also, the Braves is where I'd imagine someone named Ender ending up.
   19. madvillain Posted: August 10, 2017 at 01:43 PM (#5510581)
I RTFA and it's pretty balanced. I'm shocked Atlanta called him up without letting hit get any AAA experience. This isn't a stud hitting prospect that was tearing up AA and deserved to skip a level.

Back away from the edge. So Swanson isn't going to be Chipper Jones. You will have to live with a .750 OPS excellent defense SS. Oh darn.


Uh, his wRC+ is 50. 50! FFS, another young SS, Tim Anderson, who by the way is only 6 months older, has a wRC+ of 64 and he's been ####### brutal this year at the plate. I can hardly even imagine how a 50 looks watching him everyday.
   20. Batman Posted: August 10, 2017 at 01:51 PM (#5510588)
The URL is even more direct.
It's just German for https://www.fanragsports.com/mlb/braves/the-dansby-swanson/
   21. The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: August 10, 2017 at 01:53 PM (#5510593)
I'm shocked Atlanta called him up without letting hit get any AAA experience.


This is a clear organizational tendency, and an error in my opinion. They key in on certain hitters and decide "we have a need and they've managed AA well enough, let's jump them to the bigs." Did it with Franceour, Heyward and now Swanson. The last time it "worked" for the long haul was with Andruw. Recently they've left Albies in AAA to season a little (good), but they're talking about jumping Acuna to the bigs more or less from A ball (which would be bad.) This team isn't in a position where the addition of even a very good prospect would benefit the franchise more than letting that same prospect age and season a little against AAA and quad-A level talent in Gwinnett.
   22. Lars6788 Posted: August 10, 2017 at 02:07 PM (#5510620)
Many teams tend to promote their elite prospects from AA though - Swanson was a guy who played in college and while maybe he needed that AAA experience, he was always a guy that was going to be fast tracked because the team felt like he he was pretty much developed as a player.
   23. madvillain Posted: August 10, 2017 at 02:11 PM (#5510626)
This is a clear organizational tendency, and an error in my opinion. They key in on certain hitters and decide "we have a need and they've managed AA well enough, let's jump them to the bigs." Did it with Franceour, Heyward and now Swanson. The last time it "worked" for the long haul was with Andruw. Recently they've left Albies in AAA to season a little (good), but they're talking about jumping Acuna to the bigs more or less from A ball (which would be bad.) This team isn't in a position where the addition of even a very good prospect would benefit the franchise more than letting that same prospect age and season a little against AAA and quad-A level talent in Gwinnett.


Yikes. Not a good long term strategy. There's one kid in high A that might be able to make the jump into MLB right now and hold his own and his name is Eloy Jimenez. That's probably it. And the White Sox are in no rush at all to get him up. They'll give him a "shot" to break with the club next spring then assign him to AA/AAA and probably bring him up sometime in late July if he's raking.


   24. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 10, 2017 at 02:28 PM (#5510646)
Many teams tend to promote their elite prospects from AA though - Swanson was a guy who played in college and while maybe he needed that AAA experience, he was always a guy that was going to be fast tracked because the team felt like he he was pretty much developed as a player.

Yeah, if the guy is tearing up AA. Swanson didn't do that.
   25. wjones Posted: August 10, 2017 at 02:33 PM (#5510652)
This is a clear organizational tendency, and an error in my opinion. They key in on certain hitters and decide "we have a need and they've managed AA well enough, let's jump them to the bigs." Did it with Franceour, Heyward and now Swanson. The last time it "worked" for the long haul was with Andruw. Recently they've left Albies in AAA to season a little (good), but they're talking about jumping Acuna to the bigs more or less from A ball (which would be bad.) This team isn't in a position where the addition of even a very good prospect would benefit the franchise more than letting that same prospect age and season a little against AAA and quad-A level talent in Gwinnett.

McCann went straight from AA in midseason, the year of the baby braves, when he hit the playoff homer off Clemens. Furcal made the team out of Spring Training and I believe he had not played above A ball (of course later we find out he was older than we thought).

I do get what you say about Acuna, but he seems to have handled every level so far, and is tearing up AAA now. I don't think they will call him up, because they might need the 40 man spot in the offseason and they don't have to protect him, but you never know.
   26. Tim D Posted: August 10, 2017 at 02:44 PM (#5510673)
He's got a .795 OPS in 614 minor league PA. Eventually he will hit some at the major league level. .750 seems reasonable. Why he was so highly rated has more to do with his overall athletic profile, his high draft status, and the hopes and wishes of fans, than it has to do with actual baseball ability. He will be a good player, good enough to push Albies to 2B and Camargo to utility. He never was going to be a star. FWIW, I don't think Bregman will be either. Why anyone ever thought either one of these guys would compare with Lindor/Correa/Seager is beyond me.
   27. madvillain Posted: August 10, 2017 at 02:47 PM (#5510674)
He's got a .795 OPS in 614 minor league PA. Eventually he will hit some at the major league level. .750 seems reasonable. Why he was so highly rated has more to do with his overall athletic profile, his high draft status, and the hopes and wishes of fans, than it has to do with actual baseball ability. He will be a good player, good enough to push Albies to 2B and Camargo to utility. He never was going to be a star. FWIW, I don't think Bregman will be either. Why anyone ever thought either one of these guys would compare with Lindor/Correa/Seager is beyond me.


Which is really nothing to write home about as a #1 overall pick with three years of college. I dunno, as much as I've worried about Moncada's #1 overall status not matching his production compared to Swanson, Moncada actually produced good slash lines in the minors at a much younger age relative to the league.

More I look at this guy's profile the more it seems puzzling why he was rated so highly. Was he supposed to be once a decade defensive SS?
   28. Tim D Posted: August 10, 2017 at 02:56 PM (#5510686)
He was going to be the next Nomar.
   29. Lars6788 Posted: August 10, 2017 at 02:56 PM (#5510688)
Swanson had the the good face - but he also came from a good baseball program and was a guy to build around as a 'winning player,' even if he wasn't the next great all-around shortstop.

If the Braves hadn't ended up with him, he still might be in the minors - they needed a 'star' attraction and Swanson had the potential to be the 'hometown' kid to do well with their shiny, new ballpark.

   30. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: August 10, 2017 at 03:40 PM (#5510725)
They key in on certain hitters and decide "we have a need and they've managed AA well enough, let's jump them to the bigs." Did it with Franceour, Heyward and now Swanson.


Andrelton Simmons, too. And it's interesting that there have been articles over the last couple of days about both Simmons and another aggressively-promoted ex-Braves middle infield prospect, Jose Peraza, making big mechanical adjustments at the plate. Seems like both might have been better off with a little more development time.
   31. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 10, 2017 at 03:47 PM (#5510733)
He's got a .795 OPS in 614 minor league PA. Eventually he will hit some at the major league level.

Very misleading. .876 in A-, .967 in A+, .745 in AA (377 of the 614 PAs), and .698 in AAA.

750 seems reasonable.

That projects much closer to .650 than to .750 in MLB.
   32. madvillain Posted: August 10, 2017 at 03:59 PM (#5510745)
That projects much closer to .650 than to .750 in MLB.


FWIW, ZIPS thinks he's a 76 wRC+ the rest of the way. Speaking of Eloy, Hahn said today he'll likely get a taste of AA before the season is over. Sweet. I can't be any more excited about a prospect than I am with Jimenez. The kid seems to have "it", in addition to smashing the #### out of the ball as a 20 year old in high A.
   33. The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: August 10, 2017 at 04:04 PM (#5510749)
Andrelton Simmons, too. And it's interesting that there have been articles over the last couple of days about both Simmons and another aggressively-promoted ex-Braves middle infield prospect, Jose Peraza, making big mechanical adjustments at the plate. Seems like both might have been better off with a little more development time.


I still contend the hole in Heyward's swing could have been identified and addressed at AAA when he was younger. Francoeur was never going to be the super star they wanted, but he could have been taught to lay off at least the worst of the outside breaking balls.
   34. Lassus Posted: August 10, 2017 at 04:13 PM (#5510755)
Maybe. That inability seemed to work for Alfonso Soriano forever.
   35. bfan Posted: August 10, 2017 at 05:48 PM (#5510845)
Why he was so highly rated has more to do with his overall athletic profile, his high draft status, and the hopes and wishes of fans, than it has to do with actual baseball ability.


I go back and forth with Dansby, but being the best hitter in the SEC has to mean something; that is in Andrew Benintendi territory (actually Swanson didn't hit as well as Benintendi in college, but he hit better than LA 1st rounder Jarren Kendall, and an OPS of 1046 in the SEC is nothing to sneeze at).

I just think MLB pitchers found a hole in his swing, and now he has to fix that hole with an adjustment. Trying to fix things at the MLB level has got to be very difficult; you are getting pounded by 98 MPH fastballs and great sliders every at bat, every night.

On bringing up guys from AA: I do not get it either. You are accelerating their service time, and the players are on the learning curve for a longer portion of your "cheap to have them" period. I actually get it with pitchers; I think for most pitchers, there are only so many pitches in the arm (other than Bartolo Colon's arm, which seems to be of infinite capacity), and I would rather have those pitches thrown at the MLB level than in the minors. Shoot, I would start Kyle Wright in the majors next year, while he is still young and can throw the snot out of the ball. But Acuna? let him develop some more in MiLB.
   36. bigglou115 is not an Illuminati agent Posted: August 10, 2017 at 06:46 PM (#5510873)

I just think MLB pitchers found a hole in his swing, and now he has to fix that hole with an adjustment. Trying to fix things at the MLB level has got to be very difficult; you are getting pounded by 98 MPH fastballs and great sliders every at bat, every night.


There isn't a hole in his swing. He's completely incapable of hitting a slider. It's really just that simple. Any MLB slider seems to do the trick, at any point in or out of the zone.

edit: Just to add for people talking about why Swanson was so highly rated. The number of people who thought he was going to be a super are few and far between outside of just fans. Most people were rating him on the fact that he seemed a well rounded and advanced player. He was average or better at everything except power, which was slightly below average. The thought was that even if he came up and one problem emerged his overall profile could absorb that until he adjusted. On top of that there were a few who thought his power might exceed expectations and he'd have a shot at being a repeat all star.

I don't know where this idea that he was going to be a great defender came from. UZR has him as average for this year and all I ever heard about him as a minor leaguer was that he was good but a clear step below the real defensive whizzes at SS.
   37. bigglou115 is not an Illuminati agent Posted: August 10, 2017 at 07:08 PM (#5510883)
Also, to make it clear, my personal opinion is that Swanson isn't going to be anything, I don't think he's on an MLB roster in 2019. I don't begrudge anybody for disagreeing with me, and the Braves should absolutely do their due diligence in making sure he has every chance to succeed, my instinct is just that it isn't going to happen. The thing that weeds out minor league hitters from Major league hitters is their ability to handle a breaking ball. Swanson's trajectory didn't give him a chance to be weeded out at the MiLB level, so we're seeing it play out in the Majors, which is why its unusual and notable, but it's not that different from what happens to almost every other failed hitting prospect in the game when you get down to its core.
   38. The Duke Posted: August 10, 2017 at 07:10 PM (#5510884)
He strikes me as being a slightly better Pete Kozma but with a bit more pop
   39. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 10, 2017 at 07:39 PM (#5510907)
There isn't a hole in his swing. He's completely incapable of hitting a slider. It's really just that simple. Any MLB slider seems to do the trick, at any point in or out of the zone.

Which is why it's good to send hitters to AAA. It's the first level that they're going to see anything close to a major-league breaking ball on a regular basis.
   40. madvillain Posted: August 10, 2017 at 07:46 PM (#5510910)
Which is why it's good to send hitters to AAA. It's the first level that they're going to see anything close to a major-league breaking ball on a regular basis.


Yea put me in the boat that thinks there is a meaningful difference between AA and AAA. In AAA you're going to be seeing a lot of 6th starters and guys that while they might not throw 98 like some of the studs in the low minors can control and command 2-3 pitches on a nightly basis. You can't just be a guess hitter anymore, or if you are, you better figure out your approach and how to make educated guesses.

edit: Just to add for people talking about why Swanson was so highly rated. The number of people who thought he was going to be a super are few and far between outside of just fans. Most people were rating him on the fact that he seemed a well rounded and advanced player. He was average or better at everything except power, which was slightly below average. The thought was that even if he came up and one problem emerged his overall profile could absorb that until he adjusted. On top of that there were a few who thought his power might exceed expectations and he'd have a shot at being a repeat all star.


He totally sounds like a pick I made in OOTP one time. 2nd overall not first but the dude was just so well rounded and to boot he was already a capable defensive SS. I figured at worst I'd have a solid starter on my hands in two years. I rushed him through the minors (where he did well enough) and then he put up a Swanson like line his first year in the bigs and I sold low on him in the offseason. I followed his career after that and he never was anything more than a 30 grade utility guy.
   41. SouthSideRyan Posted: August 10, 2017 at 07:53 PM (#5510916)
Acuna isn't really comparable, and I certainly wouldn't say he'd be essentially promoted from A ball. He's had 364 PAs above A ball this season and has better numbers(and peripherals) each step of the way.
   42. madvillain Posted: August 10, 2017 at 07:56 PM (#5510920)
Aunca isn't really comparable, and I certainly wouldn't say he'd be essentially promoted from A ball. He's had 364 PAs above A ball this season and has better numbers(and peripherals) each step of the way.


Yea I saw the other Acuna thread and then went to his FG page. Had no idea he was putting up those numbers in AA and AAA figured he was still at high A ball. Pretty impressive, especially that K rate. I'd say Acuna and Jimenez are both making a great push for #1 overall next year. Might even be Acuna #1 and Jimenez #2.
   43. bfan Posted: August 10, 2017 at 08:18 PM (#5510937)
I have heard the slider theory on Swanson. That just doesn't seem right. Surely they throw sliders in the SEC; surely they throw sliders in AA. Yes they are not MLB quality sliders, but every pitch is worse in MiLB than in MLB. If he could not hit a slider someone would have noticed. Do you think the Diamondbacks didn't employ scouts? Don't we think the "he cannot hit sliders" would have hit the table before they picked him #1? He has got a hole in his swing. If he has the will he can fix it.
   44. dlf Posted: August 10, 2017 at 09:29 PM (#5510996)
I have heard the slider theory on Swanson. That just doesn't seem right. Surely they throw sliders in the SEC; surely they throw sliders in AA. Yes they are not MLB quality sliders, but every pitch is worse in MiLB than in MLB. If he could not hit a slider someone would have noticed. Do you think the Diamondbacks didn't employ scouts? Don't we think the "he cannot hit sliders" would have hit the table before they picked him #1? He has got a hole in his swing. If he has the will he can fix it.


Take a look at the Brooks Baseball data for Swanson. Here is his swing and miss percentage by pitch type for everything with at least 100 charted pitches:

Change up: 18.1%
Slider 15.7%
Four Seam: 10.4%
Curve: 9.4%
Sinker: 7.4%

Conversely, the line drive percentages:

Sinker: 6.6%
Four seam: 5.9%
Change 5.2%
Curve 2.6%
Slider 1.3%

It is still a very small sample size. And I've never really believed that there is such a difference between MiLB and MLB that the minor league numbers won't, with enough of an opportunity, be strongly indicative of major league numbers. But at least to date, Dansby has been eaten up by sliders.

Edit: I'll be at the Gwinnett game tomorrow night, so I'm hoping that Acuna isn't called up quite that soon.

Edit 2: Acuna is almost a full year younger than my daughter. So far there is no one in the majors younger than her and I'm not ready yet. So that is one more reason to keep him down on the farm.
   45. Tom T Posted: August 10, 2017 at 09:56 PM (#5511008)
There isn't a hole in his swing. He's completely incapable of hitting a slider.


I have heard the slider theory on Swanson. That just doesn't seem right. Surely they throw sliders in the SEC; surely they throw sliders in AA. Yes they are not MLB quality sliders, but every pitch is worse in MiLB than in MLB. If he could not hit a slider someone would have noticed.


At a hitting clinic at the local U last Fall (probably in November), the coach running the clinic was asking for players whose video he and the kids could examine for positives and negatives. One boy asked about Dansby Swanson. The coach brought up some scouting videos of Swanson (apparently readily available on YouTube) and immediately remarked on several poor aspects of the swing and was clearly unimpressed. Essentially the arguments were that Swanson was (a) starting his swing extremely early, and (b) was dragging his hands behind his body ... (a) likely being an effort to correct for (b). I would note that even to someone who is relatively uninitiated (I know what my kid's swing looks like when he's "on" and can at least tell what part of the swing isn't "good", even if I can't describe what has to be fixed), the Swanson video looked pretty "wrong" compared to other good swings we had viewed (e.g., Trout, Gwynn, Junior, Correa), even if I couldn't have defined what was "off". The coach remarked that unless Swanson was able to get his hands going more quickly relative to his body, such that he could start his whole swing later, he would be extremely vulnerable to sliders or any other "fast" breaking pitch.

So, I suspect that everyone with video DID know about it, but that everyone assumed a "gamer" would work hard to fix it. Swanson just may not have the necessary "elite" talent level to effect that fix.
   46. Walt Davis Posted: August 10, 2017 at 11:22 PM (#5511058)
(e.g., Trout, Gwynn, Junior, Correa)

Now wait a second ... Swanson's swing doesn't have to be nearly that good. It's (potentially) a bit like saying "here's the investment track record of some schmoe who's only worth $10 M ... now here's Warren Buffet."

Directly relevant to the discussion ... I can't find 2016 ZiPS for Swanson but for 2017 he was projected for a 726 OPS, 313 wOBA, 98 OPS+ all of which is pretty good (esp at SS) but not quite 750 OPS. His season has been so bad that his RoS is now down to a 684 OPS, 292 wOBA, 76 wRC+.

On the new "launching pad" ... meh, 532 R in 56 home games, 544 in 56 road games. What's weird is they score more on the road but give up more at home. Braves batters have hit 11 more HR on the road, their pitchers have given up 2 more at home. I do recall looking at it early in the season -- 6-8 weeks in maybe -- and it did look like a massive hitters park then. But that was a small sample and, at least over this next slightly larger sample, things have gone back to average.
   47. greenback wears sandals on his head Posted: August 10, 2017 at 11:57 PM (#5511073)
You really need averages for those breakdowns. Just because their names came up, here are whiff percentages:
________   Swan  Trout   Corr
Change up 18.1
%  13.7%  12.0
Slider    15.7%  12.2%  14.2%
Four Seam 10.4%   7.1%   7.2%
Curve:     9.4%   7.7%  12.9%
Sinker     7.4%   3.9%   5.7

It might be a good idea to throw Correa some curve balls.

One thing I wanted to add is that Tony La Russa generally knows how to evaluate the Dansby Swansons of the world. He has a lot more trouble with the Ender Inciartes (no-power OF with apparently extraordinarily good defense). Or at least he doesn't seem to agree with the defensive metrics. He also has some trouble with the Shelby Millers.
   48. Bug Selig Posted: August 11, 2017 at 06:57 AM (#5511105)
And people say the Boston media is tough.
"Tough" has too much of a positive connotation to apply to the Boston media. The Boston media is a bunch of LookAtMeeeee! hacks who actively try to sabotage everything they touch so they can sound tough when they then get to trash it. OTOH, to my knowledge they have not killed Dansby Swanson to create a story - I'll feel better if I see his name in a box score from today though.
   49. Bug Selig Posted: August 11, 2017 at 07:04 AM (#5511106)
(e.g., Trout, Gwynn, Junior, Correa)
One of these things is not like the others. You make a great point, though. Major-leaguers, as a species, have very close to optimal mechanics. If someone with solid but not expert knowledge can readily identify flaws, that's a huge red flag. There are always exceptions - Hunter Pence comes to mind - who can succeed through some combination of physical gifts and pitch recognition, but don't go around betting on it.
   50. bfan Posted: August 11, 2017 at 08:11 AM (#5511108)
Taking at face value everything said about Swanson's swing here, what is the upside to the Braves if he was fixed? Putting 4 WAR for 4 years against 4 years of team controlled salary, make your own assumptions on WAR value, but we could be talking about a fix here worth, what, $100 million dollars? So you have guys (an entire organization) who make a living doing this stuff; they wake up in the morning and their only job all day is to try and make players better and correct flaws and teach players things. Do we not think for one second that someone would be on this obvious flaw? Am I missing something? Is there evidence they are working on it?
   51. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: August 11, 2017 at 10:17 AM (#5511164)
One of these things is not like the others.


Trout's white? Gwynn's dead? Correia's an infielder?
   52. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: August 11, 2017 at 11:29 AM (#5511218)
Daniel Descalso


Boy, 1 WAR combined over 8 years, never actually getting to +/- 1 WAR in any single year. He IS the mythical Replacement Player.
   53. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 11, 2017 at 12:51 PM (#5511298)
I have heard the slider theory on Swanson. That just doesn't seem right. Surely they throw sliders in the SEC; surely they throw sliders in AA. Yes they are not MLB quality sliders, but every pitch is worse in MiLB than in MLB.

Sort of. There are plenty of guys in miLB that throw hard; pitchers generally throw harder at 20-21 than they do at 24-25. So, if a guy is getting around on top-notch minor league heat, he'll very-likely be able to hit a major league fastball.

But, if you throw hard and have a major league breaking pitch, you don't stay in A or AA for very long.
   54. dog poop god Posted: August 11, 2017 at 01:06 PM (#5511302)
Having taken tons of grief for dealing Simmons, thr Braves turned once again to the Frenchy solution and turned to a pretty boy local to make tbe face of the franchise... instead of any resembling extras from GWTW.

Hopefully the law of averages plays out and the Braves are stuck with a poor fielding, mediocre hitting shortstop for the rest of Simmons' career.
   55. bfan Posted: August 11, 2017 at 02:40 PM (#5511386)
pitchers generally throw harder at 20-21 than they do at 24-25.


I agree with that, but I bet the big difference in fastballs is that they are just hard or maybe a little but harder (by velocity) in MLB, but a heck of a lot more of them are at the knees and on the outside or inside corner. Guys throw hard in the lower leagues and college but I am guessing are hitting the fat part of the plate a whole lot more, so the same principle applies to FBs as sliders. You see them in the lower leagues; they are just tougher to hit well as you move up in the ranks.
   56. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 11, 2017 at 02:44 PM (#5511394)
I agree with that, but I bet the big difference in fastballs is that they are just hard or maybe a little but harder (by velocity) in MLB, but a heck of a lot more of them are at the knees and on the outside or inside corner. Guys throw hard in the lower leagues and college but I am guessing are hitting the fat part of the plate a whole lot more, so the same principle applies to FBs as sliders. You see them in the lower leagues; they are just tougher to hit well as you move up in the ranks.

Right. But, you can still get a read on whether a hitter can turn around those 95+ MPH fastballs in A/AA.

You can't get a read on whether a hitter can lay off a major league breaking pitch from a guy who also has a decent FB you need to guard against. There are virtually no pitchers with major league Fastballs and breaking balls in A/AA. They all get promoted.
   57. Mike A Posted: August 11, 2017 at 04:23 PM (#5511504)
Having taken tons of grief for dealing Simmons, thr Braves turned once again to the Frenchy solution and turned to a pretty boy local to make tbe face of the franchise... instead of any resembling extras from GWTW.

Uh, Jason Heyward was also pushed as the 'face of the franchise.' From Dan Uggla: "(Heyward's) face was everywhere.. TV, billboards, everywhere you can think to put it, they put it." He was voted to the All-Star team as a rookie. The Heyward hype was huge here in Atlanta, though obviously it didn't work out so well in the end.
   58. bfan Posted: August 11, 2017 at 04:30 PM (#5511509)
Jason Heyward was also pushed


agree, 100%, and if we get away with filtering everything through the lens of race and grievance, one might notice that all 3 were kids from the Atlanta area.
   59. madvillain Posted: August 11, 2017 at 07:05 PM (#5511582)
Uh, Jason Heyward was also pushed as the 'face of the franchise.' From Dan Uggla: "(Heyward's) face was everywhere.. TV, billboards, everywhere you can think to put it, they put it." He was voted to the All-Star team as a rookie. The Heyward hype was huge here in Atlanta, though obviously it didn't work out so well in the end.


Speaking of bad swings, WTF happened to Heyward from 20 to now? I guess I could google but I'd rather here it from some Atlanta fans. Did he fall into bad habits or was he just never that good as his rookie season suggested?
   60. dog poop god Posted: August 11, 2017 at 07:19 PM (#5511588)
if we get away with filtering everything through the lens of race and grievance, one might notice that all 3 were kids from the Atlanta area.

Does any other MLB franchise do this stupid ####? At least Heyward had actual star potential. At least before the Braves made him a face.
   61. bfan Posted: August 11, 2017 at 10:10 PM (#5511699)
Francoeur had star potential; he was hitting well in minor leagues he was 3 to 4 years young for (go look at his MiLB stats; they are darn good for a kid as young as he was); he just couldn't take a walk.

Dansby was a 1-1, who did fine in MiLB.

If they did not have star potential, the bar you set is very high.
   62. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 11, 2017 at 10:59 PM (#5511757)
Dansby was a 1-1, who did fine in MiLB.

No he didn't. Not for a 1-1.

A 261/342/402 line (117 wRC+) in AA is no reason to rush a guy with fewer than 600 miLB PAs to the bigs.
   63. bfan Posted: August 11, 2017 at 11:10 PM (#5511762)
We are crossing points here. I said he had star potential.

Those AA stats are good for someone over 2 years young for the league. You could look at that and look at his past and think "star".

I do agree there was no reason to bring him up to the majors at that point, but there are not a lot of Coppy decisions I am going to embrace with much zeal.

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