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Transaction Oracle
— A Timely Look at Transactions as They Happen

Monday, November 12, 2007

2008 ZiPS Projections - Milwaukee Brewers

The Brewers look again like they’ll be a pretty good team.  The biggest concern I think is that the team needs to sort out who plays where - the defense looks a little like one of those small picture puzzles which has 15 sliding squares and room for 16 but you have to manipulate them into the proper order to see the sailboat or the puppy dog or Linus Pauling.  Probably their best SS option remains their centerfielder, their best 2B option after the centerfielder is probably at short, their 2B probably shouldn’t be at second but should be somewhere, and their 3B should probably be in left.  How do you get the defense lined ideally without annoying half the lineup over the winter?  Having Gallardo, Braun, and Sheets for a full-season and a fully-healthy Weeks will help the Brewers from falling to the Plexiglass Principle, but it’s hard to count on Sheets for a full season.  The Brewers are cutting loose Jenkins at just about the right time.  He meant a lot to the team over the last decade, but it was the right thing to do.


Name               P Age   AVG   OBP   SLG   G AB   R   H 2B 3B HR RBI BB   K SB CS
Prince Fielder*      1b 24 .282 .380 .571 162 585 102 165 35 1 44 106 83 123 4 2
Corey Hart           rf 26 .289 .353 .518 158 546 93 158 36 7 25 85 49 112 22 9
Ryan Braun           3b 24 .294 .332 .554 143 538 85 158 33 4 33 93 30 113 15 7
AVERAGE 1B——————- 1b——.270 .353 .469—————————————————————
Rickie Weeks         2b 25 .254 .363 .422 129 465 92 118 21 6 15 47 65 117 23 4
AVERAGE LF——————- lf——.269 .345 .450—————————————————————
AVERAGE RF——————- rf——.269 .342 .451—————————————————————
Gabe Gross*          rf 28 .264 .358 .426 137 333 52 88 21 3 9 40 47 77 5 1
Joe Dillon           3b 32 .280 .338 .449 118 343 50 96 21 2 11 46 30 60 3 0
Bill Hall           cf 28 .270 .336 .475 146 503 77 136 37 3 20 69 50 135 8 6
Geoff Jenkins*        lf 33 .259 .339 .449 117 390 48 101 24 1 16 55 36 108 1 0
AVERAGE 3B——————- 3b——.266 .339 .442—————————————————————
AVERAGE CF——————- cf——.264 .331 .419—————————————————————
Kevin Mench         lf 30 .261 .315 .424 118 394 46 103 21 2 13 50 28 68 2 1
AVERAGE 2B——————- 2b——.268 .331 .408—————————————————————
Laynce Nix*          cf 27 .247 .299 .447 109 360 36 89 17 2 17 59 23 108 4 1
J.J. Hardy           ss 25 .262 .318 .421 120 435 59 114 22 1 15 54 36 55 1 2
AVERAGE SS——————- ss——.266 .324 .401—————————————————————
Andy Abad*          1b 35 .256 .320 .402 73 234 28 60 10 0 8 32 20 35 1 1
AVERAGE C———————- c——.253 .317 .398—————————————————————
Tony Graffanino       2b 36 .255 .336 .366 75 235 32 60 12 1 4 24 25 61 1 1
Cole Gillespie       lf 24 .241 .337 .382 140 474 55 114 25 3 12 57 62 109 11 10
Johnny Estrada#      c   32 .266 .320 .373 110 394 34 105 21 0 7 47 30 44 0 0
Damian Miller         c   38 .245 .329 .345 76 249 25 61 16 0 3 24 30 62 0 0
Vinny Rottino         c   28 .261 .321 .360 132 444 49 116 19 2 7 41 35 72 8 6
Brad Nelson*        1b 25 .233 .309 .381 144 486 56 113 25 1 15 63 51 120 8 5
Anthony Gwynn*        cf 25 .260 .325 .328 139 439 61 114 16 4 2 33 41 77 17 8
Eric Munson*        c   30 .224 .302 .350 89 277 30 62 14 0 7 31 30 57 1 1
Callix Crabbe#        2b 25 .239 .326 .330 146 497 59 119 22 4 5 36 61 80 15 11
Drew Anderson*        lf 27 .254 .301 .356 134 469 61 119 27 3 5 42 29 102 14 8
Angel Salome         c   22 .245 .283 .361 105 388 36 95 24 0 7 55 21 62 3 1
Michael Rivera       c   31 .209 .288 .355 91 301 22 63 11 0 11 39 30 62 3 2
Craig Counsell*      ss 37 .232 .307 .315 101 314 40 73 13 2 3 22 30 48 9 3
Matthew Gamel*        3b 22 .224 .285 .348 143 509 47 114 25 4 10 50 42 114 8 6
Ozzie Chavez#        ss 24 .241 .301 .308 120 370 31 89 15 2 2 30 32 60 4 6
Chris Barnwell       ss 29 .227 .286 .311 130 418 45 95 18 1 5 28 27 71 9 3
Hernan Iribarren*      2b 24 .254 .301 .316 132 484 48 123 14 8 0 37 33 107 13 14
Charles Thomas*      cf 29 .214 .281 .302 86 262 29 56 9 1 4 21 22 56 4 2
Michael Brantley*      lf 21 .229 .300 .272 121 401 43 92 12 1 1 33 40 58 19 10
Lorenzo Cain         rf 22 .222 .278 .288 142 528 56 117 22 2 3 35 33 126 17 10
Alcides Escobar       ss 21 .251 .275 .296 118 459 47 115 10 4 1 37 13 71 19 13

* - Bats Left
# = Switch-Hitter

Name           CThr 1b 2b 3b ss lf cf rf
Fielder*          Fr            
Hart                     Av Fr Av
Braun                 Pr        
Weeks               Fr          
Gross*                    Av Fr Av
Dillon             Av Pr Fr   Av    
Hall               Av Av Av   Fr  
Jenkins*                  Av   Av
Mench                     Av   Fr
Nix*                      Vg Av Vg
Hardy                   Fr      
Abad*            Fr       Fr    
Graffanino         Vg Av Vg Fr      
Gillespie                   Av    
Estrada#        Fr                
Miller         Av                
Rottino         Fr   Pr   Pr   Pr    
Nelson*            Av   Pr   Fr    
Gwynn*                    Vg Av Vg
Munson*        Fr   Av            
Crabbe#              Av     Av Av Av
Anderson*                  Av Pr Av
Salome         Av                
Rivera         Pr   Av   Pr        
Counsell*            Vg Vg Vg      
Gamel*                Fr        
Chavez#              Fr Av Fr      
Barnwell             Av Av Fr      
Iribarren*            Fr     Av    
Thomas*                    Av Pr Av
Brantley*          Av       Vg Fr  
Cain                       Vg Vg
Escobar                 Av      

Player Spotlight - Ryan Braun
Name           AVG   OBP   SLG   G AB   R   H 2B 3B HR RBI BB   K SB CS
Optimistic (15%)  .317 .377 .632 152 574 105 182 40 6 43 124 54 107 21 6
Mean         .294 .332 .554 143 538 85 158 33 4 33 93 30 113 15 7
Pessimistic (15%) .274 .318 .505 114 430 59 118 23 2 24 62 28 97 9 6

Top Near-Age Offensive Comps: Ken Keltner, Les Bell

Name               Age   ERA   W   L   G GS   INN   H   ER HR   BB   K
Francisco Cordero       33   3.04   5   2 71   0   71.0   59   24   5   27   86
Yovani Gallardo       22   3.66 14 10 33 31   192.0 181   78 17   63 169
Ben Sheets           29   3.72 11   7 23 23   145.0 143   60 17   27 128
Matt Wise           32   4.00   4   3 50   0   54.0   53   24   6   18   42
Derrick Turnbow       30   4.08   5   5 71   0   64.0   54   29   6   38   71
LEAGUE AVERAGE RELIEVER———4.15———————————————————————-
Brian Shouse*        39   4.21   2   1 67   0   47.0   48   22   4   18   31
Scott Linebrink       31   4.24   5   5 70   0   70.0   71   33 10   24   57
Manny Parra*          25   4.31   7   6 23 18   119.0 125   57 10   42   84
Steve Bray           27   4.33   4   4 47   2   79.0   81   38 11   23   64
Carlos Villanueva       24   4.46   8   9 38 12   111.0 110   55 16   43   89
Chris Capuano*        29   4.48 12 12 33 31   195.0 207   97 25   52 154
Greg Aquino           30   4.50   2   2 50   0   54.0   54   27   8   22   52
LEAGUE AVERAGE STARTER———- 4.55———————————————————————-
David Bush           28   4.64 10 12 33 31   192.0 210   99 27   44 134
Jeff Suppan           33   4.76 10 12 31 31   187.0 213   99 23   66 111
Ray King*            34   4.85   2   2 65   0   39.0   43   21   5   20   24
Seth McClung         27   4.97   7 10 54 11   114.0 112   63 16   63   95
Claudio Vargas         30   4.99   8 11 29 25   146.0 159   81 23   57 113
Mitch Stetter*        27   5.00   3   4 50   0   45.0   47   25   7   17   34
Mariano Salas         27   5.48   1   3 55   0   64.0   70   39 11   28   46
Tim Dillard           24   5.49   5 10 26 16   118.0 144   72 18   35   52
Zach Jackson*        25   5.55   7 14 29 28   167.0 201 103 23   61   92
Vince Perkins         26   5.80   4   8 26   9   76.0   86   49 11   45   53
Adam Pettyjohn*        31   5.97   6 13 22 17   110.0 128   73 25   34   76
Jeff Housman*        26   6.08   4   8 27 10   77.0   87   52 14   43   53
R.A. Dickey           33   6.26   6 13 28 21   148.0 178 103 31   65   75
Alec Zumwalt         27   6.27   1   4 46   0   66.0   76   46 14   29   48

* - Throws Left

Player Spotlight - Ben Sheets
              ERA   W   L   G GS INN   H   ER HR   BB   K
Optimistic (15%)  2.93 15   6 27 27 175 155   57 16   26 166
Mean           3.72 11   7 23 23 145 143   60 17   27 125
Pessimistic (15%)  4.62   7   8 19 19 117 126   60 17   28   95

Top Near-Age Comps:  Bret Saberhagen, Scott Sanderson

Disclaimer:  ZiPS projections are computer-based projections of performance. 
Performances have not been allocated to predicted playing time in the majors -
many of the players listed above are unlikely to play in the majors at all in 2008. 
ZiPS is projecting equivalent production - a .240 ZiPS projection may end up
being .280 in AAA or .300 in AA, for example.  Whether or not a player will play
is one of many non-statistical factors one has to take into account when predicting
the future.

Players are listed with their most recent teams unless Dan has made a mistake. 
This is very possible as a lot of minor-league signings are generally unreported in
the offseason. 

ZiPS is projecting based on the AL having a 4.49 ERA and the NL having a 4.40 ERA.

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Pirates

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Phillies

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A’s

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Dan Szymborski Posted: November 12, 2007 at 05:25 PM | 42 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 12, 2007 at 05:49 PM (#2612226)
I don't know who Alec Zumwalt is, but he's the name that always comes up when I am looking at the Leaders page on DMB, and click on a player who is not on the current active roster.
   2. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: November 12, 2007 at 05:52 PM (#2612231)
Ryan Braun's pessimistic projection still has him slugging over .500? Nice.
   3. Smitty* Posted: November 12, 2007 at 06:06 PM (#2612244)
The Brewers are cutting loose Jenkins at just about the right time. He meant a lot to the team over the last decade, but it was the right thing to do.


Do you say that because Gabe Gross is a similarly valuable player who's cheaper? Because Jenkins projection is just a hair below average for left field and since it was a one year option there's no long term risk. He seems like a good choice for any team looking to plug a corner outfield hole this offseason, unless somebody gets nutty and offers him a 3 year deal or something.
   4. Loren F. Posted: November 12, 2007 at 06:08 PM (#2612247)
Sheets's optimistic projection has him pitching just 175 innings? Not good.
   5. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: November 12, 2007 at 06:11 PM (#2612251)
Corey Hart rf 26 .289 .353 .518 158 546 93 158 36 7 25 85 49 112 22 9

And how many wisecracks from Primates about how he wears his sunglasses at night do you project?
   6. The Essex Snead Posted: November 12, 2007 at 06:17 PM (#2612261)
And how many wisecracks from Primates about how he wears his sunglasses at night do you project?

Maybe that's why his defense is so lackluster?
   7. Keith Law Posted: November 12, 2007 at 06:23 PM (#2612269)
I'll take the over on Weeks. What's the optimistic line, Dan?
   8. Dan Szymborski Posted: November 12, 2007 at 06:29 PM (#2612275)
Weeks has a very high optimistic projection - 278/394/501.
   9. 1k5v3L Posted: November 12, 2007 at 06:31 PM (#2612283)
Weeks has a very high optimistic projection - 278/394/501.


Nah, that's just Rickie being Rickie.
   10. Willie Mayspedester Posted: November 12, 2007 at 06:39 PM (#2612296)
So Sheets is going to give up between 16 and 17 HR, 26 and 28 BBs in 117 to 175 innings.
   11. Famous Original Joe C Posted: November 12, 2007 at 06:44 PM (#2612309)
So Sheets is going to give up between 16 and 17 HR, 26 and 28 BBs in 117 to 175 innings.

Thanks.
   12. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: November 12, 2007 at 06:46 PM (#2612313)
The Braun projection looks spot-on to me given his BB/K rate.
   13. BeanoCook Posted: November 12, 2007 at 06:47 PM (#2612316)
Has there been a player more difficult to get a read on than Weeks? (with the bat) He dominated at D-2, was pushed quickly through the minor league system and never really got his feet under him, but had some success for his age. He has had a 3 year injury riddle MLB career to date, but has mixed in 2-3 brief stretches of utter dominance for a 2nd baseman.

I say his dramatic increase in plate disipline is a very good sign that will lead him to be a .275/.380/.480 man with 30 SBs. That is indeed top 5 at his position.
   14. Dan Szymborski Posted: November 12, 2007 at 06:55 PM (#2612335)
So Sheets is going to give up between 16 and 17 HR, 26 and 28 BBs in 117 to 175 innings.

That's only in those innings totals - the HR/9s are quite different.
   15. BeanoCook Posted: November 12, 2007 at 07:05 PM (#2612349)
The Braun projection looks spot-on to me given his BB/K rate.


I disagree. Braun was a player that could not strike out, no matter what in triple-A last year. Check it out. Braun strikes me as an incredibly determined hitter with visions of HOF dominance. 2007 Being his first taste of the Majors last year, I saw him totally committed to hitting the ball hard in every situation, no matter what. I do feel that this was due to Braun trying to show he belonged and in order to fit in he was driven to swing hard and "produce" slugging results every time.

This may sound odd, but I expect that Braun has become comfortable with idea he is going to stick in the majors and you will see a much more patient hitter from the one you saw in 2007. I'd not be surprised to see him to hit .305/.365/.575.

I think everyone is missing on Braun's ability to hit for average. He will never be a walk machine, but his line drive rate and fly ball rate are excellent for a young player. The Brewers tended to "rush" these younger players so projecting them is not easy, we tend to dismiss small samples of dominance, why are we not dismissing equally smaller samples of struggles?
   16. BeanoCook Posted: November 12, 2007 at 07:18 PM (#2612367)
Ouch, only 3 projected relievers above average. Ouch, only 3 projected relievers above average. 2 of which I completely disagree with, Wise and Turnbow. This pen is holding the Brewers back. Paying Cordero $40mm won't fix this either.
   17. Dan Szymborski Posted: November 12, 2007 at 08:09 PM (#2612429)

I disagree. Braun was a player that could not strike out, no matter what in triple-A last year. Check it out. Braun strikes me as an incredibly determined hitter with visions of HOF dominance.


And the year before, he struck out 100 times in the minors, and struck out 112 times while torching major league pitchers. He's not Adam Dunn, but there's no reason at this point to think he won't be a moderate strikeout guy.

A .360 BABIP is also pretty high for a guy with his line-drive rate of .163 and he's not super-fast.
   18. BeanoCook Posted: November 12, 2007 at 08:32 PM (#2612457)
A .360 BABIP is also pretty high for a guy with his line-drive rate of .163 and he's not super-fast.


I have 2 disagreements. 1st, Braun is fast. The Brewers time their players in the Spring and he finished 2nd on the team in the 60-yd dash. C Hart was 1st (Braun 2nd)and R Weeks was 3rd. Braun has excellent speed. However, I agree with you if you literally mean, "not-super fast".

Also, I have a qualm with .BABIP. I know that Voros McCracken did ground breaking research, but I believe that we are only at the beginning of understanding what BABIP really means or how to interpret it. Too often I think people trot out BABIP and scream "luck" and move on. I'm not saying you are doing this Dan, but I certainly think too many respected analysts hang their hats a bit too much on BABIP without focusing on the fact that BABIP “laws” work better a macro level, less so with individual players. Now we have a bit of a problem because the level of discourse on this subject has hit rock bottom as many scream “Luck” for just about any player that defies the “laws”.

I think we are at least a few more years away from understanding variance between BABIP from one year to the next, what exact variables contribute to variance between the peaks and valleys of a single player's BABIP and what qualifies as luck and what qualifies as skill.

Finally, I also have a qualm with Braun's .163 LD rate. I say that his true LD rate is closer to 20% and that too many of Braun's LDs were classified as FB (maybe you can help me understand what goes into this). Braun hits the highest line drives I have seen, if that makes sense.

This brings in mind, yet, another complaint I have with hit tracker in certain ballparks with high walls, over 10 feet--but I'll save that for another time.

Thanks for the work Dan.
   19. shoewizard Posted: November 12, 2007 at 08:53 PM (#2612488)
Who is a better bet to be MUCH worse than his projection, Capuano or Bush? I'm guessing Capuano.
   20. Dan Szymborski Posted: November 12, 2007 at 09:07 PM (#2612502)
Ah, but don't forget, I'm not projecting Braun to have a .163 + .120 BABIP, but a .314 BABIP, which isn't that far from .200 + .120. I don't explicitly use LD% to determine BABIP - I've had to cobble together an estimator that goes from the basic stats and I might be getting to the point at which I have enough interesting findings to cobble together a SABR presentation.
   21. BeanoCook Posted: November 12, 2007 at 09:12 PM (#2612506)
And the year before, he struck out 100 times in the minors, and struck out 112 times while torching major league pitchers. He's not Adam Dunn, but there's no reason at this point to think he won't be a moderate strikeout guy.


I agree we have a guy that will strike out. But what consideration, if any, is given to players that get pushed quickly up levels, as the Brewers tend to do? I think it needs to be recognized that players that get moved around a lot, and quickly, are not likely to get as comfortable with their settings, their league as easily as a player that moves up one level per season.

I bet if you study HOF caliber players you will find that most of them got better in the Major Leagues, when compared to their minor league careers. I am suggesting that certain types of talents are not easily projectable pre age 25.
   22. kwarren Posted: November 13, 2007 at 12:19 AM (#2612756)
Also, I have a qualm with .BABIP. I know that Voros McCracken did ground breaking research, but I believe that we are only at the beginning of understanding what BABIP really means or how to interpret it. Too often I think people trot out BABIP and scream "luck" and move on. I'm not saying you are doing this Dan, but I certainly think too many respected analysts hang their hats a bit too much on BABIP without focusing on the fact that BABIP “laws” work better a macro level, less so with individual players. Now we have a bit of a problem because the level of discourse on this subject has hit rock bottom as many scream “Luck” for just about any player that defies the “laws”.

I think we are at least a few more years away from understanding variance between BABIP from one year to the next, what exact variables contribute to variance between the peaks and valleys of a single player's BABIP and what qualifies as luck and what qualifies as skill.


A great study that I saw at Shandler's Baseball HQ indicated that BABIP for hitters was the result of the following variables in the indicated proportion.

Randomness - 66.5 % (variation around the major league average of .295)
Hitter's line drive propensity - 16.0 %
Variation in team defense - 8.0 %
Hitter's power - 5.0 %
Hitter's speed - 3.0 %
Pitcher's skill - 1.5 %

If you want to argue that BABIP is not a measure of luck, knock yourself out, but once a hitter has an established BABIP any seasonal variance from this is more likely to be luck than anything else, unless there is a noticeable difference in his line-drive rate. And even this has to have some element of luck in it.
   23. Willie Mayspedester Posted: November 13, 2007 at 12:43 AM (#2612767)
So Sheets is going to give up between 16 and 17 HR, 26 and 28 BBs in 117 to 175 innings.

That's only in those innings totals - the HR/9s are quite different.


I just thought it was a little funny that the counting stats stayed the same with the changing rates / IP totals. I'm sure that this isn't common for your projections, not that there's anything wrong with that.
   24. The Keith Law Blog Blah Blah (battlekow) Posted: November 13, 2007 at 01:46 AM (#2612793)
Weeks after being recalled on 8/10: .273/.442/.553/.995, 15/15 in SB.

Of course, I said something similar about Bill Hall last year. Also, Weeks seemed to have a bunch of at bats where he just refused to swing the bat at the end of the year. I don't know if he's going to keep all the walks.
   25. BeanoCook Posted: November 13, 2007 at 03:27 AM (#2612887)
If you want to argue that BABIP is not a measure of luck, knock yourself out, but once a hitter has an established BABIP any seasonal variance from this is more likely to be luck than anything else, unless there is a noticeable difference in his line-drive rate. And even this has to have some element of luck in it.


Exactly my point. To label Braun's 2007 BABIP built on luck would be wrong, as we simply don't know for sure yet where his "baseline" will net out. Instead most people ignore all of the variables that are not controlled by "luck" (roughly 35% of the equation, a significant portion) and will always trot out luck when the not so trusty .300 BABIP mark is missed.

I predict that we will find that Braun's BABIP will exceed the .295 -.300 law by at least 10%. That is a big difference that few want to acknowledge exists.
   26. Dan Szymborski Posted: November 13, 2007 at 03:52 AM (#2612911)

I just thought it was a little funny that the counting stats stayed the same with the changing rates / IP totals. I'm sure that this isn't common for your projections, not that there's anything wrong with that.


It's actually not all that common as the variance in playing time isn't all that different from a lot of variance in rate stats. The same thing happens with PECOTA, too - just glancing randomly at Chris Carpenter yields between 16-18 home runs allowed from 10th to 90th percentiles.
   27. 1k5v3L Posted: November 13, 2007 at 04:00 AM (#2612913)
Which starting pitcher do you guys think are the Brewers most likely to trade? Bush? Capuano? I don't doubt they'd like to hold onto Gallardo, Parra and Villanueva, probably Sheets as well, and Suppan just is pretty hard to move with that contract and sub-par 2007 performance.

And what would the Brewers want for one of Bush/Capuano? A catcher? Some reliever?
   28. Dan Szymborski Posted: November 13, 2007 at 04:04 AM (#2612919)
That should read as all that uncommon.
   29. BeanoCook Posted: November 13, 2007 at 04:19 AM (#2612938)
Bush is worth about a $8-10mm per year player. I'd expect to get a very good middle arm for him, or a corner OF.
   30. BeanoCook Posted: November 13, 2007 at 04:20 AM (#2612943)
I'd take Kelly Stoppach and a quality Indians middle arm for Bush or a combination of such.
   31. 1k5v3L Posted: November 13, 2007 at 04:25 AM (#2612951)

I'd take Kelly Stoppach and a quality Indians middle arm for Bush or a combination of such.


Middle arm? Not that there's anything wrong with that. I also believe Shapiro would definitely make Kelly Stoppwatch available.

Bush is probably better off staying in the NL, and going to a team with solid defense. I can see the Dbacks being interested in him or Capuano. And Byrnes and Melvin know each other well already, having pulled off the Estrada for Davis swap last year...
   32. BeanoCook Posted: November 13, 2007 at 04:37 AM (#2612964)
Middle arm? Not that there's anything wrong with that. I also believe Shapiro would definitely make Kelly Stoppwatch available.

Bush is probably better off staying in the NL, and going to a team with solid defense. I can see the Dbacks being interested in him or Capuano. And Byrnes and Melvin know each other well already, having pulled off the Estrada for Davis swap last year...


Count me as sick and tired of, "he would be good in the NL" tripe. Every AL team has a 4th and 5th starter and most could find a use for Bush. Bush already played a season in the AL, he did fine, better than last year.
   33. 1k5v3L Posted: November 13, 2007 at 04:44 AM (#2612973)
This wasn't a knock against Bush, it's just a statement that any pitcher is better off staying in, or going to, the NL. He does need a team with solid defense though, for sure. I see Bush will be entering his first year of arbitration, and he made 375K last year. He'll be under control through 2010. Definitely a guy who should be on quite a few teams' wish lists.

Btw, people using Mozilla should download the extensions from HardballTimes that allow you to search the HardballTimes and HardballTimes Players databases directly from your Mozilla search field. Totally awesome.
   34. MikeinMI Posted: November 13, 2007 at 03:39 PM (#2613262)
I'll take the over on Hardy. That seems like quite a regression for a 25 year old SS. Any chance the Brewers move Hart back to 3b and Braun to the OF? Or was Hart even worse?
   35. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: November 13, 2007 at 03:54 PM (#2613279)
I'll take the over on Hardy.

Me too.

Why is Bill Hall's RC so low with that batting line?
   36. Dan Szymborski Posted: November 13, 2007 at 05:38 PM (#2613406)
Why is Bill Hall's RC so low with that batting line?

A hair less than the two above him due to the SB.
   37. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: November 13, 2007 at 07:10 PM (#2613517)
Bush stays put until the Cordero situation is resolved. Dave might be tabbed the closer. No way does Melvin let Nedley give the job back to Turnbow. That would be incredibly dumb. By season's end Derrick was afraid of his own shadow.

No hyperbole. I had folks around the team tell me the lad was sweating at the thought of going into a game by the 4th inning. But Yost wanted him to "work through it". Check out his September numbers and tell me how that worked out.

And don't give me that sample size bullsh#t. He stunk pretty much the last 10 weeks. And did so in a very ugly way.
   38. BeanoCook Posted: November 13, 2007 at 11:08 PM (#2613821)
Bush as closer? Seriously? Melvin loves hard throwers, in addition, Bush's HR rate is too high to close.
   39. _ Posted: November 14, 2007 at 12:24 AM (#2613887)
I think Bush can bounce back, either as a starter or reliever/closer. His HR rate is high now, but I believe he'd be a different pitcher if he only has to go one IP. His biggest problem as a starter was the third time through the lineup. He'd sail through the first 4 or 5 and then hit a wall. I'd hang on to him. He's better than Vargas, certainly; Villanueva and Parra (and Sheets) are no sure things; and his salary is still reasonable. As for Capuano, check his career platoon splits, and it says LOOGY. That's not an insult. Why not use him in a role in which he'd succeed? I think they can cobble together a good bullpen without having to waste a ton of money on Cordero.
   40. BeanoCook Posted: November 14, 2007 at 12:30 AM (#2613891)
I think they can cobble together a good bullpen without having to waste a ton of money on Cordero.


I sure hope so. I used to say/think that the mark of a good GM was a good bulpen. Seems that with near 50% turnover from year to year, any GM, regardless of market size/budget, can put a quality pen together without blowing the bank.
   41. J. Lowenstein Apathy Club Posted: November 14, 2007 at 04:47 AM (#2614120)
Seems that with near 50% turnover from year to year, any GM, regardless of market size/budget, can put a quality pen together without blowing the bank.

Your manager has to play along, though. And your pitching coach. You have to have guys who can recognize who is pitching well, sort out sensible roles, and be creative and flexible. And it really helps to have a totally reliable guy or two (like Cordero, actually) along for the ride. Building a good pen is probably more of a manager's trait than a GM's, especially as the high variability of relief pitchers make finding the good ones in-season as they come to you so important.
   42. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: November 23, 2007 at 02:49 AM (#2623557)
I'd like to request a projection for Mark DiFelice. And so I am; thank you.

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