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Friday, November 08, 2019

Report: Red Sox trading Jackie Bradley Jr. ‘all but certain’

Chaim Bloom will be put to the test right away this offseason as the Boston Red Sox’ new Chief Baseball Officer.

The Mookie Betts contract situation is enough to give any front office executive a headache, but one under-the-radar storyline in Boston this offseason will be what Bloom and the Red Sox brass decide to do about center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr.

Bradley is set to hit free agency after next season and will make $11 million in the final year of his contract. As the Red Sox look to shed payroll, they could look to deal their Gold Glove center fielder and find a more cost-effective replacement. In fact, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic believes it’s “all but certain” Boston will look to trade Bradley.

Will he be taking the Jackpot Wad with him when he goes?

 

QLE Posted: November 08, 2019 at 12:46 AM | 72 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: jackie bradley jr., red sox, trade rumors

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   1. Moeball Posted: November 08, 2019 at 02:36 AM (#5899627)
Will they move Mookie to CF? From what I've seen of a few times he played there, he clearly has the range to cover it.
   2. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: November 08, 2019 at 03:26 AM (#5899628)
I mean that's the same conclusion I came to, after spending 5 mins looking at their roster and LT numbers as well. So I can't say I am shocked.

He is worth the 11m, but probably not a whole lot more. But a 2 WAR CF at 11m should be very movable. So it is the obvious piece for a team apparently desperate to shed payroll. With only 1 year of team control, I doubt they will get much back for him. But if they can pick up a decent relief arm, I think he is probably gone.
   3. Walt Davis Posted: November 08, 2019 at 05:41 AM (#5899630)
"all but certain" to "look to trade" ... boy, that's a scoop!
   4. How can it be QPQ if Zonk Says it isn't a QPQ? Posted: November 08, 2019 at 08:09 AM (#5899633)
The Cubs seem like a good fit...
   5. Jose is an Absurd Time Cube Posted: November 08, 2019 at 08:24 AM (#5899635)
I think the likeliest scenario if the Sox move on from JBJ is that Benintendi moves to center, Mookie stays in right and left becomes the domain of JDM and/or someone else (Chavis maybe? Or someone not currently on the roster in a Chris Young/Jay Payton/Gabe Kapler kind of scenario).

Bradley is the kind of player as an owner you love. He's been productive and useful and now just as he's getting expensive he's also reaching the point where you are content to move on from him (he'll be 30 this coming season).

I feel a bit bad for JBJ. His new fan base is almost certain to hate him. He's a good player but his offensive slumps are absolutely brutal to watch and for whatever reason he is a guy who always gets off to a slow start. He comes across as a really good guy, very soft spoken and I LOVE watching him in center field but I when he's hitting .140 at the end of April with 30Ks in 80 at bats he's going to hear it. Sox fans know him so unusually for Boston he doesn't take too much abuse, it's just kind of accepted.
   6. Nasty Nate Posted: November 08, 2019 at 08:35 AM (#5899637)
I think the likeliest scenario if the Sox move on from JBJ is that Benintendi moves to center, Mookie stays in right and left becomes the domain of JDM and/or someone else
Or if they wanted to be over-complicated, it could be Benintendi in CF at home, but Mookie in CF on the road.
   7. Jose is an Absurd Time Cube Posted: November 08, 2019 at 08:40 AM (#5899639)
Left to right, the complicated version;
Home: JDM-Bennie-Mookie
Road: Bennie-Mookie-Someone who isn't JDM
   8. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: November 08, 2019 at 08:54 AM (#5899643)

He is worth the 11m, but probably not a whole lot more. But a 2 WAR CF at 11m should be very movable.


2 WAR if you believe BRef, 1.4 per Fangraphs. Both metrics have him as average in CF the last two seasons, and he's dead consistent at a 90 wRC+/OPS+.

I wouldn't pay that guy $11M, unless I was desperate in CF. I certainly wouldn't trade anything to get him.

The problem is going to be that any team that's contending wants a better player, and any team not contending wants a cheaper player.
   9. The Honorable Ardo Posted: November 08, 2019 at 09:16 AM (#5899650)
Players with JBJ's profile have an irritating history of collapsing in their early 30s, but I'd suppose you're safe for 2020.
The Cubs seem like a good fit...
Even more so b/c you can platoon him with Almora.
   10. Bug Selig Posted: November 08, 2019 at 09:31 AM (#5899653)
The problem is going to be that any team that's contending wants a better player, and any team not contending wants a cheaper player.
DingDingDing. This is one of those situations where people look at one team's roster in a vacuum. Other teams don't really need him for exactly the same reasons the Red Sox don't really need him.
   11. bfan Posted: November 08, 2019 at 09:33 AM (#5899654)
The problem is going to be that any team that's contending wants a better player, and any team not contending wants a cheaper player.


This is a really interesting take, and it nicely defines another middle area where okay players are not necessarily desired players.

I would say his best hope is a team with a lot of high upside players who just don't want a hole in the line-up that will doom them (which kind of sounds like the Red Sox to me).

   12. Rough Carrigan Posted: November 08, 2019 at 09:58 AM (#5899662)
I would think another team might want to trade for him after his typical first 6-8 weeks of batting .180 with zero power. Then they'd get the better production that would raise his season's stats to his typical .730 OPS.
   13. DL from MN Posted: November 08, 2019 at 10:01 AM (#5899664)
The Rockies would probably take him if the Red Sox want an expensive mediocre reliever in return.
   14. JJ1986 Posted: November 08, 2019 at 10:02 AM (#5899665)
Would they be interested in a Jed Lowrie or Jeurys Familia?
   15. Nasty Nate Posted: November 08, 2019 at 10:03 AM (#5899666)
Well the Sox can explore the trade market immediately, so they can simply not offer him a contract if they, nor anybody else, don't think he is worth his likely arbitration award.
   16. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: November 08, 2019 at 10:08 AM (#5899667)
Well the Sox can explore the trade market immediately, so they can simply not offer him a contract if they, nor anybody else, don't think he is worth his likely arbitration award.

Sure, they're not stuck with him, and keeping him is an OK option too. I'm just saying, don't expect a real return in a trade.
   17. Nasty Nate Posted: November 08, 2019 at 10:15 AM (#5899673)
Sure, they're not stuck with him, and keeping him is an OK option too. I'm just saying, don't expect a real return in a trade.
I agree. I guess his fate is somewhat tied to whether or not some other team aggressively wants JD Martinez.
   18. villageidiom Posted: November 08, 2019 at 10:32 AM (#5899681)
Solidly a 2 WAR player with upside, at $11 million, would be a bargain. I doubt his arbitration case will end up with him that low.
The problem is going to be that any team that's contending wants a better player, and any team not contending wants a cheaper player.
Any team contending is going to find that player from where? Free agent CFs suck right now. Signed CFs aren't much better.

Just as a benchmark, here's top WAR totals for the last 3 years, for anyone with at least 300 games played, at least 75% of them in CF, per BB-Ref:

25 Trout (36)
15 Cain (16)
10 Kiermaier (10)
8 Marte (12)
7 Bradley (11?)
7 Inciarte (8)
7 Pillar (9?)
6 Pollock (15)
6 Margot (??)
5 Marisnick (??)
5 Deshields (??)
4 Dyson (FA)
3 Taylor (??)

The numbers in parentheses are 2020 salaries, with a ? for arbitration guesses and ?? for arbitration lack-of-guesses.
   19. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: November 08, 2019 at 10:36 AM (#5899682)
Any team contending is going to find that player from where? Free agent CFs suck right now. Signed CFs aren't much better.

They'll start a cheap young player that projects worse but has upside, and spend the $11M elsewhere.
   20. PreservedFish Posted: November 08, 2019 at 11:03 AM (#5899692)
Interesting list in #18, although it mostly serves just to show how rare true full-time CFs are these days. Because of the cutoffs it misses a ton of reasonable CF options - Acuna, Pham, Springer, Gardner, Hicks, Nimmo, Mallex, Pederson, Canha, Heyward and so on, all of whom are at least within spitting distance of Bradley's WAR total. Not that these guys are all cheaply available or anything (Heyward is!), but the comment sort of implies that he's one of the better CFs, which probably isn't true, particularly if you add in non-CFs that don't totally embarrass themselves at the position like Conforto and Kepler and Yelich. Bradley may well be the single best fielder of them all, but from here on out you have to assume that he'll be increasingly platooned, and as he ages he'll begin losing his fielding advantage too.
   21. Fernigal McGunnigle Posted: November 08, 2019 at 11:23 AM (#5899697)
In the big SBNation sim that was just posted, JBJ was traded to the A's for Joakim Soria. Once bonuses are figured in, that saves the Sox maybe $1.5 million and gets them a reliever who'll probably project to somewhere in the range of low to mid cromulent. The Sox could likely get a trade like that without much problem, but with the team in cost cutting mode I don't see it happening.
   22. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: November 08, 2019 at 11:30 AM (#5899699)
Bradley may well be the single best fielder of them all,

That's old info. He's only average now.
   23. villageidiom Posted: November 08, 2019 at 11:33 AM (#5899700)
Bradley may well be the single best fielder of them all, but from here on out you have to assume that he'll be increasingly platooned, and as he ages he'll begin losing his fielding advantage too.
He is under contract only for 2020. What he'll be in 2025 is of no concern to a trade partner. (More accurately, it's a separate concern.)
   24. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: November 08, 2019 at 11:43 AM (#5899705)
He is under contract only for 2020. What he'll be in 2025 is of no concern to a trade partner.

Well, yes, but his trajectory matters. Decline doesn't happen at a nice steady rate.

Right now he projects as a 90 wRC+, avg. defensive CF, worth about 2 WAR. Your view on his aging trajectory will inform how confident you are that he hits that.
   25. Bug Selig Posted: November 08, 2019 at 12:08 PM (#5899719)
Solidly a 2 WAR player with upside, at $11 million, would be a bargain.
"With upside" is a funny way to say "30-year old (in April) whose value is almost pure speed and defense".

Is he one of the best 30 center fielders in the world? Absolutely. By that standard, he'd be a desirable commodity and should have value.

But, there are ~10 teams most years who aren't actively trying to win. Is he one of the best 20 center fielders in the world? YMMV, but I don't think so, at least not decidedly so. People trying to find landing spots for him came up with the ringing endorsement that he'd be good enough to platoon with Albert Almora. 4th outfielders and platoon guys don't tend to make $11M.
   26. The Yankee Clapper Posted: November 08, 2019 at 01:14 PM (#5899743)
I suppose Bradley can be traded, but not for that much given his limitations, cost, and every team knowing the Red Sox are somewhat desperate to move him. Boston might save a small amount of money, but I doubt they can find a trade that improves the team much if at all. Teams looking for cheaper CF options might want to consider the Nationals Michael A. Taylor. Like Bradley, he’s got pretty good power but doesn’t make enough contact. If a team thought their hitting coach could make a .250 hitter out of either of them, the defense would add a lot. However, both have been around long enough that the problem wouldn’t seem to be the coaching.
   27. Rally Posted: November 08, 2019 at 01:14 PM (#5899744)
"With upside" is a funny way to say "30-year old (in April) whose value is almost pure speed and defense".

He's never really had speed. Just a bit above average. Makes up for it with great jumps and anticipation on defense. On the bases, he's at 27.6 sprint speed. Above average overall but 64th among 76 center fielders last year.
   28. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: November 08, 2019 at 01:15 PM (#5899745)
"With upside" is a funny way to say "30-year old (in April) whose value is almost pure speed and defense".


He's not really a speed guy. His first step is far and away quicker than anyone else, but is top speed is eh for a CFer. Routes aren't all that pretty by design, he stresses getting to the general location, then making the play in the last few feet - this could to more spectacular looking plays, think Jim Edmonds diving vs Andrew Jones just being there.

That being said, he is no doubt one of the top defensive CF in the game.

I will add that I really don't like some of the numbers that come out of the fenway outfield. Can be really skewed, LF has no real chance to make out of zone/5 star catches, and CF can be pinched with a rangy RF, RF obviously benefiting, enabling monster defensive numbers there.
   29. Dandy Little Glove Man Posted: November 08, 2019 at 01:29 PM (#5899756)
Another way to look at it: 2020 Steamer Projections. Bradley's in the tightly bunched 16-20 range both by the standard version and by equalizing everyone's playing time (Steamer600). There's also not all that much drop-off down to around the #30 range. So while Bradley's definitely starting-caliber, I wouldn't expect many teams to be interested in paying him $10M-$12M next year. If you're looking for a CF, you'd probably rather deal with the Dodgers and try to get one of their higher-upside and/or cheaper alternatives (Verdugo, Pederson, Enrique Hernandez, Chris Taylor).
   30. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: November 08, 2019 at 01:32 PM (#5899758)

That being said, he is no doubt one of the top defensive CF in the game.


People keep saying this but it appears to no longer be true.

Based on players Fangraphs calls CFs, Bradley was 31st in DRS and 34th in UZR/150 in 2019. In 2018, he was 31st and 11th.
   31. jmurph Posted: November 08, 2019 at 01:34 PM (#5899760)
People keep saying this but it appears to no longer be true.

Based on players Fangraphs calls CFs, Bradley was 31st in DRS and 34th in UZR/150 in 2019. In 2018, he was 31st and 11th.

Do you believe Bradley was one of the worst CFers in baseball the past two years?
   32. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: November 08, 2019 at 01:35 PM (#5899762)
Do you believe Bradley was one of the worst CFers in baseball the past two years?

Defensively, no. I believe he was average. Lots of those 30 better guys don't play CF full-time.

Overall, a little below average.
   33. villageidiom Posted: November 08, 2019 at 01:47 PM (#5899767)
"With upside" is a funny way to say "30-year old (in April) whose value is almost pure speed and defense".

Same list as before, arranged by oWAR per BB-Ref:

25 Trout (36)
11 Cain (16)
8 Marte (12)
6 Bradley (11?)
6 Pollock (15)
6 Pillar (9?)
5 Inciarte (8)
5 Kiermaier (10)
4 Margot (??)
3 Marisnick (??)
2 Deshields (??)
1 Dyson (FA)
1 Taylor (??)
   34. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: November 08, 2019 at 01:56 PM (#5899770)
Here are JBJ's Inside Edge fielding numbers from FG, for the past 2 years:
Probability      2018    2019
Impossible   0
%    0%      0%
Remote    1-1037.5%   16.7%
Unlikely 10-4028.6%     75%
Even     40-60%   75%   66.7%
Likely   60-9091.7%    100%
Routine 90-100%  100%   99.6


So basically, the only fields, where he doesn't outperform not just the average of the bracket, but the ENTIRE BRACKET (often by vast margins), is the one unlikely bucket, where he is still above the average of the bucket. and one routine, where he is 0.4 percentage points off a perfect score. I don't see how that can possibly translate to being only average.
   35. jmurph Posted: November 08, 2019 at 02:20 PM (#5899782)
That's because he's very clearly an elite defensive CFer.
   36. DL from MN Posted: November 08, 2019 at 02:22 PM (#5899785)
Just looking at that Steamer list I only see 10 teams that would be interested - Cubs, Rockies, Indians, Reds, Blue Jays, Phillies, Giants, Yankees, Cardinals, Rangers. Of those teams you can cross several of them off the shortened list for various reasons, most notably the $11M price tag.
   37. The Yankee Clapper Posted: November 08, 2019 at 02:30 PM (#5899788)
The Yankees have Aaron Hicks under contract for another 6 years, and are expected to re-sign Brett Gardner to bridge the gap until Hicks returns from Tommy John surgery. They wouldn’t be interested in trading for Bradley, unless the Red Sox would consider taking on the Yankees other CF option, Jacoby Ellsbury. It worked before, why not try again?
   38. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 08, 2019 at 02:38 PM (#5899791)

The Cubs seem like a good fit...


Aren't the Cubs trying to cut back?

I know the Royals are rebuilding, but I also know they have absolutely loved JBJ since he was at South Carolina and knowing that Dayton Moore hates losing, I can see him doing a Drive for 75 and trying to pickup Bradley if he can get him for a fungible reliever or something.
   39. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: November 08, 2019 at 03:15 PM (#5899804)

Just looking at that Steamer list I only see 10 teams that would be interested - Cubs, Rockies, Indians, Reds, Blue Jays, Phillies, Giants, Yankees, Cardinals, Rangers.

Neither Conforto nor Nimmo is really a great defensive option in CF. Bradley would be an offensive upgrade over Juan Lagares*. But the problem with acquiring Bradley is that if everyone's healthy, there are too many players for the spots available. That's not even assuming they get anything from Cespedes this year.

* Although probably not as much as the numbers last year would indicate. Lagares looked a lot better in the second half.
   40. DL from MN Posted: November 08, 2019 at 03:29 PM (#5899808)
I think the Royals, Orioles, Tigers, etc would grab him off waivers hoping they can move him again next summer but they're not going to trade anything of value for him.
   41. DCA Posted: November 08, 2019 at 03:58 PM (#5899818)
The only teams from the list in #36 that I think would be at all interested are the Cubs, the Phillies (only if they are cutting bait on Odubel), and Blue Jays.

Don't think the Orioles (Hays) or Tigers (JaCoby/Daz) would be particularly interested either, but the Royals, Mariners, D-Backs, and White Sox would probably be willing to pay his contract. He doesn't have a lot of value above his contract though, so I can't see a big return.

Orioles might be a better target to trade Eovaldi for Cobb, clearing a few million in salary for the Sox, less terrible pitcher to the Orioles.

EDIT: Or Price for Cobb, saving more money but Price is actually good.
   42. jmurph Posted: November 08, 2019 at 04:09 PM (#5899822)
Orioles might be a better target to trade Eovaldi for Cobb, clearing a few million in salary for the Sox, less terrible pitcher to the Orioles.

EDIT: Or Price for Cobb, saving more money but Price is actually good.

This remains my hope. If they're absolutely desperate to shed salary, surely they can eat a bunch of money and move one of their expensive starters rather than trading away future Hall of Famer Mookie Betts.
   43. DL from MN Posted: November 08, 2019 at 05:17 PM (#5899838)
The only teams from the list in #36 that I think would be at all interested are the Cubs, the Phillies (only if they are cutting bait on Odubel), and Blue Jays.


To the Jays for Ken Giles would be interesting. Giles can be flipped elsewhere.
   44. Walt Davis Posted: November 08, 2019 at 06:11 PM (#5899854)
Statcast has Bradley at +6 in 2019 but remember that is vs an average OF. There are 10 full-time and at least 5 part-time CF rated that good or better. He's clearly not elite on this measure as the top 8, ranging from +10 to +23, are all CF. The statcast elite for 2019 are pretty clearly Robles, Buxton (who only played about half a season) and Kiermaier.

Statcast rated him much better in 2018 at +12. That still put him only tied for 7th among CF, well behind Cain, Inciarte and Bader ... and one ahead of Almora.

On the Inside Edge numbers, you need to keep in mind that IE tends to be quite "conservative." The vast majority of plays are in the "routine" bucket. So they do give Bradley credit for catching 75% of his unlikely balls in 2019 -- of which he had only 8 for the entire season so that's 6 plays made. You also need to check the league averages and understand that the distribution is "skewed" within category. What I mean is that the 10-40% "unlikely" category has an average catch rate of 33% for CF in 2018 (not the 25% midpoint you might expect). 2018 CFs caught 58% of "even" balls, nearly the top of that range. "Outperforming the entire bracket" in CF generally just means "was a bit above-average."

So out of those 8 unlikely balls, an average CF would have caught 2.4 while Bradley caught 6. That's good obviously but 3.5 extra outs there is probably no more than 4 runs. So combining the last two years, relative to an average 2018 CF, Bradley is approximately:

remote +5
unlikely +3
even +1 (Bradley had only 7 "even" opportunities over 2 years??)
likely +3

So that's +12 plays relative to an average CF over 2 years, probably about the same as statcast's +18 compared with average OF.

Here's Cain for 2018-19.

remote +6.5
unlikely +6
even +1
likely +4

So that's +17-18. That's better but it's not that big of a deal -- call it 6-7 runs over 2 years. (Assume they are mostly cutting off doubles and the occasional triple and a few bloop singles.) The basic lesson of IE, at least in the OF, is that defense simply doesn't matter a whole lot. From referencing it occasionally over the years, the elite guys are usually around +8-9 plays relative to position, probably capped out then around +10 runs. There probably aren't many who get to play a position regularly down at -10 runs. FWIW, IE probably rates Bradley about the same as UZR over 2018-19 putting him at average WAR overall.

Note, for "average", I just used the 2018 average numbers. Not sure how I ended up in 2018 rather than 2019 but I assume they're close enough it doesn't really matter.
   45. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: November 08, 2019 at 07:29 PM (#5899869)
The only teams from the list in #36 that I think would be at all interested are the Cubs, the Phillies (only if they are cutting bait on Odubel), and Blue Jays.


Why wouldn't the Rockies want him? They played Ian Desmond in CF most of the time - and he was terrible. JBJ would be a great fit there, spacious OF to patrol and help keep some wear off Blackmon.


ETA:

And thanks for the more detailed analysis Walt.
   46. PreservedFish Posted: November 08, 2019 at 07:48 PM (#5899871)
Those inside edge numbers are always hella suspicious.
   47. DCA Posted: November 08, 2019 at 08:40 PM (#5899875)
Why wouldn't the Rockies want him? They played Ian Desmond in CF most of the time - and he was terrible.

You just answered your own question. They seem to be comfortable playing Ian Desmond in CF.
   48. Ziggy is done with Dominican discotheques Posted: November 08, 2019 at 09:35 PM (#5899884)
Didn't the Indians have an absolute black hole of an outfield last year and at least pretended like they wanted to maybe try to compete? Jake Bauers sucks and $11m is about right for a 1.5 win player. Which means that JBJ has zero trade value, but if they want to get an arm back, they can probably do it from the Indians. Let me look at some minor league rosters and see if there's something there...

* looks *

How about Randy Valladares? He's a 24 y.o. reliever who pitched reasonably well in A/A+ (and 1.2 innings at AAA) last year. Looks like he has a live fastball but doesn't know where it's going. Probably organizational material (as you'd expect for the return on a player with no trade value), but enough of a K rate to at least make it look good.
   49. DCA Posted: November 08, 2019 at 10:06 PM (#5899887)
To the Jays for Ken Giles would be interesting. Giles can be flipped elsewhere.

Giles is a lot better than JBJ. For Billy McKinney might work.
   50. Tom Nawrocki Posted: November 08, 2019 at 10:09 PM (#5899888)
You just answered your own question. They seem to be comfortable playing Ian Desmond in CF.


This is a little unfair. The Rockies opened the season with Desmond in center, but at least they noticed he was terrible, and moved him to a corner halfway through the season. Even though his replacement, David Dahl, went down with an injury, Desmond didn't play a single inning in center field after July 21.
   51. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: November 08, 2019 at 10:12 PM (#5899889)
Didn't the Indians have an absolute black hole of an outfield last year and at least pretended like they wanted to maybe try to compete? Jake Bauers sucks and $11m is about right for a 1.5 win player. Which means that JBJ has zero trade value, but if they want to get an arm back, they can probably do it from the Indians. Let me look at some minor league rosters and see if there's something there...

Makes sense, but that's the team that wouldn't even risk paying 1/18 for Brantley coming off a 3.5 WAR year.
   52. Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: November 08, 2019 at 10:34 PM (#5899890)
The Mets need to be in on this.

Beltran being the best CFer on your team is good in 2005, not so much in 2020.
   53. Ziggy is done with Dominican discotheques Posted: November 08, 2019 at 11:31 PM (#5899902)
Makes sense, but that's the team that wouldn't even risk paying 1/18 for Brantley coming off a 3.5 WAR year.


And got badly burned by it. Rumor last off season was that they thought that they had the Central all tied up and could coast into the dice roll of the post season. (Remember all those articles about trading Kluber?) That's the kind of hubris the baseball gods love to punish. Maybe they learned their lesson.
   54. Howie Menckel Posted: November 08, 2019 at 11:44 PM (#5899903)
Rockies CF starts, 2019, and starts elsewhere in parentheses

Desmond 67 (LF 37)
Dahl 36 (LF 37, RF 19)
Hampson 20 (2B 40, SS 10, LF 2)
Daza 19 (LF 3, RF 2)
Hilliard 11 (LF 4, RF 3)
Tapia 9 (LF 78, RF 4)

so all 6 CFs also got starts at LF, and 4 also got starts at RF
   55. Jeff Frances the Mute Posted: November 09, 2019 at 08:06 AM (#5899918)
And got badly burned by it. Rumor last off season was that they thought that they had the Central all tied up and could coast into the dice roll of the post season. (Remember all those articles about trading Kluber?) That's the kind of hubris the baseball gods love to punish. Maybe they learned their lesson.

They are looking at moving Lindor so it doesn’t seem like they learned their lesson.
   56. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: November 09, 2019 at 09:14 AM (#5899922)
They are looking at moving Lindor so it doesn’t seem like they learned their lesson.


ok fine, JBJ and a Darwinzon Hernandez for Lindor. Xander to 3B and Devers to 1B.
   57. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: November 09, 2019 at 09:55 AM (#5899926)
I could see the Reds making a run at Bradley. They took on Puig last year, who was also a rental. As was Choo in 2013. Their problem (well, one of them) is that Nick Senzel has a disturbing injury history for a young man and they don't have a lot of other good options out there.

One interesting statistical nugget about Bradley is his career home/road OPS split 779/677. Actually I guess that isn't unusual for Boston players, but I figured it would be a smaller delta for a LHB. He hits more doubles at home, more homers on the road ... and has a ridiculous h/r BABIP split of 328/262. For a lefty hitter with decent speed, that road BABIP is just incredibly low.
   58. Jose is an Absurd Time Cube Posted: November 09, 2019 at 10:28 AM (#5899936)
Actually I guess that isn't unusual for Boston players, but I figured it would be a smaller delta for a LHB.


The thing about lefties at Fenway is that they get rewarded for staying back and going the other way. Most hitters to succeed need to do this. When JBJ goes into his slumps you see him just get into bail and wail mode, he gets out in front on everything. When he's taking the ball the other way good things happen. Righties at Fenway can sometimes be exploited by their desire to yank everything to the monster (this is known as the Armas effect).
   59. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: November 09, 2019 at 10:41 AM (#5899939)
One interesting statistical nugget about Bradley is his career home/road OPS split 779/677. Actually I guess that isn't unusual for Boston players, but I figured it would be a smaller delta for a LHB.

Fenway helps LHB as much or more as RHB. For RHB it turns some high flies from outs into HR, but some hard drives from HR to doubles. For LHB it mostly just turns medium flyouts into doubles. Opposite field fly balls are more likely to be the weakly hit kind that Fenway favors.

Edit: just a quick look at guys that played all almost all their careers as Sox. Home/Road OPS split

Williams 1148/1082
Yaz 904/779
Rice 920/789
Evans 885/798
Ortiz 964/897
Pedroia 850/759

Pretty hard to pick the lefties from the righties based on that split.
   60. Darren Posted: November 09, 2019 at 12:07 PM (#5899976)
"all but certain" to "look to trade" ... boy, that's a scoop!


You forgot "seems"! So this "report," is a reporter repeating the conjecture of another reporter, based on no inside information. What a great report.
   61. puck Posted: November 09, 2019 at 04:51 PM (#5900082)
It would be interesting for the Rockies to go after him. They rarely have a superior CF out there despite all the ground to cover, so that would be fun. Prolonged slumps? Can't be worse than Desmond.

They aren't expected to spend money this offseason after blowing all sorts of dough on bad relievers. (Plus raises for Arenado and arb players like Story are kicking in.)

I am getting the sense they don't want to play Dahl there since he is so fragile and being in LF may be less strenuous. That would pretty much leave Garrett Hampson, who came up as a middle infielder but is fast and seemed to do okay out there. With the other guys in Howie's list still around.
   62. Walt Davis Posted: November 09, 2019 at 05:01 PM (#5900084)
I'd say the key to the "Fenway split" is the doubles split (and probably HRs for RHB) ... doubles H/R then HRs H/R

Rice 207 166 208 174
Yaz 382 264 237 215
Betts 135 94 65 74
Boggs 281 141 who cares (Boston years only)
Ortiz 382 250 241 300 (incl Minn)

So Yaz, Boggs and Ortiz appear to have gotten massive help on doubles. Rice seems fairly balanced (so did Evans) so that may be mostly standard HFA. Mookie may be losing a few line-drive HRs to the Monster but is clearly banging enough doubles off the wall to compensate.

The guy I could never understand the Red Sox not acquiring was Kingman. He already pulled everything anyway so you really didn't need to worry about the Monster making him pull-happy. And he basically did only 5 things in the batter's box -- strike out, hit life-threatening GBs to the left side, hit mile-high pop-ups to the left side, hit half-mile high FBs to the track and hit quarter-mile high FBs out of the park. Most of those warning track FBs would have been HRs in Fenway or at least doubles off the wall. Heck, on a windy day, a pop-up might have made it out. He only got to play in Fenway at the tail end of his career so it was only 84 PA but he hit 276/345/816 (that was not a typo) with 13 HR. Weirdly, he reached base 18 more times in Fenway ... and never scored.

EDIT: JDM so far 43 vs 27 doubles, 44 vs 35 HRs. But his road BABIPs have been higher, especially this year.
   63. Tom Nawrocki Posted: November 09, 2019 at 05:03 PM (#5900085)
.
   64. Tom Nawrocki Posted: November 09, 2019 at 05:04 PM (#5900086)
I am getting the sense they don't want to play Dahl there since he is so fragile and being in LF may be less strenuous. That would pretty much leave Garrett Hampson, who came up as a middle infielder but is fast and seemed to do okay out there.


Sam Hilliard doesn't look like a center fielder but you've gotta love the bat, and Raimel Tapia looks like a center fielder but you've gotta wonder about the bat. Both those guys are getting a little old to be prospects, though.
   65. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: November 10, 2019 at 01:01 PM (#5900200)
Bradley's career oWAR is 10.5, and his dWAR is 6.3. Has there every been an everyday outfielder for a contending franchise whose career dWAR numbers exceeded those of his oWAR? Bradley's about as close to it as anyone I can remember.
   66. Fernigal McGunnigle Posted: November 10, 2019 at 01:28 PM (#5900204)
BBRef has Cesar Geronimo with 5.8 dWAR and 5.6 oWAR. Paul Blair's at 18.8 oWAR and 18.8 dWAR.
   67. JJ1986 Posted: November 10, 2019 at 03:43 PM (#5900220)
Kevin Kiermaier is 15.4 dWAR and 12.2 oWAR.
   68. PreservedFish Posted: November 10, 2019 at 07:10 PM (#5900243)
Tough standard, as oWAR is compared to replacement level, whereas dWAR is compared to average.
   69. DCA Posted: November 10, 2019 at 11:44 PM (#5900271)
Jimmy Piersall is the biggest differential I can find: 16.1 dWAR, 10.8 oWAR

Willy Taveras is best ratio I can find: 4.5 dWAR, 1.8 oWAR (short career but started on two WS teams)

Jake Marisnick beats both, but he's not really a regular: 8.5 dWAR, 2.7 oWAR
   70. Fernigal McGunnigle Posted: November 11, 2019 at 11:29 AM (#5900324)
BBRef has 44 players who played 500+ games with 80% of their time spent in the OF and a dWAR at least 1.000001 times their oWAR. 8 of the players on the list had both negative oWAR and dWAR, so rather than defensive specialists they were just guys who sucked. Juan Lagares has the biggest differential (6.5 -- 9.9 dWAR, 3.4 oWAR) and started for the 2015 World Series losers.

It's a very modern phenomenon. 9 of the 44 players were active in 2019, and another (Craig Gentry) played in 2018. 24 of the 36 with a positive dWAR debuted after 1990. Debuts by decade:

Decade    All  dWAR 0
1880s      4     3
1890s      1     0
1900s      0     0
1910s      0     0
1920s      0     0
1930s      1     1
1940s      0     0
1950s      3     3
1960s      2     1
1970s      6     2
1980s      3     2
1990s      8     8
2000s      7     7
2010s      9     9 


Between Jimmy McAleer in 1889 and Piersall in 1950, the only debut of a defense-first OF (with a positive dWAR) was Tom Oliver, who managed a 1.3 dWAR and 0.0 oWAR in 514 games starting in 1930 (playing on a Red Sox team averaging 96 losses a year during his tenure). It's obvious looking at the chart why guys like Piersall and Geronimo stood out so much.

Jarrod Dyson makes the list (10.9 dWAR, 6.5 oWAR), and of course played on two World Series teams. Special case, of course.
   71. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: November 11, 2019 at 02:04 PM (#5900369)
Bradley's career oWAR is 10.5, and his dWAR is 6.3. Has there every been an everyday outfielder for a contending franchise whose career dWAR numbers exceeded those of his oWAR? Bradley's about as close to it as anyone I can remember.

Thanks for all the above answers. Piersall would be my choice, but in 17 season he only played for one team (the 1959 Indians) that seriously contended for a pennant. Leaving him aside, I'd probably go with Blair or Kiermaier as the best examples of what I was trying to get at, although neither of them seemed quite as bad offensively as Bradley, and Bradley's 6.3 dWAR career total also seems suspiciously low.
   72. villageidiom Posted: November 11, 2019 at 06:02 PM (#5900425)
So Yaz, Boggs and Ortiz appear to have gotten massive help on doubles. Rice seems fairly balanced (so did Evans) so that may be mostly standard HFA. Mookie may be losing a few line-drive HRs to the Monster but is clearly banging enough doubles off the wall to compensate.
Note that the ones who seem fairly balanced are RHB, and the ones who got massive help were LHB.

This kinda makes sense. For RHB Fenway turns outs into doubles (and HR), but also turns HR into doubles (or singles) depending on the launch angle. For LHB it's mostly the former. That's also why it might not have made sense to get Dave Kingman, as he was a RHB prone to hard line drives. I mean, any RHB prone to hard line drives would be good to get, but it's not like Fenway is necessarily a net positive for them.

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