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Transaction Oracle
— A Timely Look at Transactions as They Happen

Friday, December 28, 2007

Rangers - Acquired Hamilton

Texas Rangers - Acquired CF Josh Hamilton from the Cincinnati Reds for P Edinson Volquez and P Danny Ray Herrera.

Interesting trade this one was, definitely out of the blue.  There are huge upsides and downsides on each side, particularly on the Rangers side.

The upsdie for the Rangers is pretty obvious.  Josh Hamilton was a hot prospect for a reason and when healthy, was terrific for the Reds.  Hamilton’s problem, however, is a number of reasons that have kept him off the baseball field over the last decade.  In the event that Josh Hamilton gets on the field, he’s the most talented centerfielder (assuming you don’t consider Juan Gonzalez one for his early days) in Ranger history - one cannot watch Hamilton play a few games in baseball and not love watching him play.  Catching a handful of Reds games is enough to unleash the exuberance, both rational and irrational!

Volquez is the safer player here and when the hard-throwing pitching prospect with command issues is the safer bet, you know you’re dealing with some big uncertainties.  The man with the destined-to-be-misspelled-a-lot first name has electric stuff, but knowing what to do with it can sometimes be an issue for him.  If you think command isn’t important, just ask General Burnside.  He may end up becoming a reliever, and a good one too.  That leaves Daniel Herrera, an interesting relief prospect - an extreme groundballer who has this funky changeup-screwball-sinker thing that batters just hit straight down.  I always like guys with interesting pitches, especially when those pitches exist and the pitchers in question actually throw them.

Can’t really complain about this trade either way as I love everybody involved in the trade.  It’s really just a question of two organizations deciding which risks they can accept at which positions for what upside.  OK, that’s a bit weaselly, but the players in this trade are risky enough that the odds of this entry coming back to haunt me, with people linking this entry with HAHA YOU SUCK (see Soriano trade) are extremely high.

2008 ZiPS Projection - Josh Hamilton
—————————————————————————————————————————————————
          AB   R   H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB   BA   OBP   SLG   OPS+  RAR DR   WMV ($M)
—————————————————————————————————————————————————
Projection   334 47   94 17 1 17 53 33 69   6 .281 .349 .491   115   15   4     6.23
—————————————————————————————————————————————————
Opt. (15%)  371 61 115 23 2 23 82 42 70   9 .310 .383 .569   144   37   8  
Pes. (15%)  233 27   58 10 0 10 37 19 56   3 .249 .307 .421   88   1   1
—————————————————————————————————————————————————
Top Offensive Comps:  Jim Edmonds, Mack Jones, Roy Hobbs

 

2008 ZiPS Projection - Edinson Volquez
————————————————————————————————————————
        W   L   G GS   IP   H   ER HR BB SO   ERA ERA+  RAR WMV ($M)
————————————————————————————————————————
Projection 10 14 33 33 178 188 103 31 77 141 5.21   89   8   2.7
————————————————————————————————————————
Opt. (15%) 13 12 34 34 191 183   87 25 65 166 4.10 113   33
Pes. (15%)  6 14 28 28 147 175 101 29 69 105 6.18   75   -9
————————————————————————————————————————
Top Comps:  Rich Dobson, Catfish Hunter

No Herrera projection yet since my internet is craptacular at the moment.

 

Dan Szymborski Posted: December 28, 2007 at 04:05 AM | 47 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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Reader Comments and Retorts

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   1. 8ball Posted: December 28, 2007 at 04:40 AM (#2654940)
Thanks!
   2. Guts Posted: December 28, 2007 at 05:16 AM (#2654974)
The Hobbs comp is telling - that guy was only good for one season.
   3. So Taguchi is My Sensei Posted: December 28, 2007 at 06:25 AM (#2655031)
Hererra is the type of pitcher that give whiffle ballers and little people hope.
   4. Exploring Leftist Conservatism since 2008 (ark..) Posted: December 28, 2007 at 11:39 AM (#2655074)
Dan--not sure where to post this, so: were you planning on a Matt Wise projection/thread? Thanks.
   5. rawagman Posted: December 28, 2007 at 04:17 PM (#2655152)
INteresting that Hamilton's projections - regular, super and unleaded all have him with under 400 ABs
   6. Jeff K. Posted: December 28, 2007 at 04:22 PM (#2655159)
I was a fan of the trade when it was announced, and I still am. That said, that is one wild swing between optimistic and pessimistic for Hamilton.
   7. The Piehole of David Wells Posted: December 28, 2007 at 05:05 PM (#2655203)
hamilton's offensive comps are interesting. his "personal" comp must be something like kevin mitchell or darryl strawberry. how common is it for minor leaguers to basically throw away their careers b/c of drug addictions?

and if he's kevin mitchell, do you really want him on your team?
   8. Famous Original Joe C Posted: December 28, 2007 at 05:23 PM (#2655221)
INteresting that Hamilton's projections - regular, super and unleaded all have him with under 400 ABs

Well, when was the last time he had 500 in a season? Exactly.
   9. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: December 28, 2007 at 05:30 PM (#2655231)
INteresting that Hamilton's projections - regular, super and unleaded all have him with under 400 ABs

dan's projections don't really project playing time.
   10. Oriole Tragic is totally awesome in the postseason Posted: December 28, 2007 at 05:57 PM (#2655252)
#9: Apparently, RAR and WMV are PT-dependent. So, ZiPS currently does projections based on PT. Which is pretty close to projecting PT.
   11. 1k5v3L Posted: December 28, 2007 at 05:59 PM (#2655256)
Krivsky felt he was one obscure reliever short of a WS ring.
   12. flournoy Posted: December 28, 2007 at 06:05 PM (#2655261)
#9: Apparently, RAR and WMV are PT-dependent. So, ZiPS currently does projections based on PT. Which is pretty close to projecting PT.


My understanding is that while ZiPS does project playing time (projecting counting totals would be impossible without doing so), the playing time projections themselves are not meaningful. Numbers like RAR and WMV are just "FYI, refer to these at your own peril" goodies Dan tosses at us. Of course, Dan would know better than I do.
   13. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: December 28, 2007 at 06:06 PM (#2655264)
The real projections are the rate stats. The rest just go off the rates.
   14. Moe Greene Posted: December 28, 2007 at 06:58 PM (#2655307)
I don't understand this trade from the Reds POV unless they strongly feel Hamilton has fallen off the wagon again.

From everything I read, my best guess is that it's related to Jerry Narron's firing. Narron's brother was close to Hamilton and his quasi-caretaker for the Reds. When Jerry was fired, however, his brother went along with him, and Hamilton was apparently not very pleased.

Maybe the Reds feared that Hamilton -would- fall off the wagon if he's so unhappy about this. Pure speculation on my part, of course.
   15. flournoy Posted: December 28, 2007 at 07:20 PM (#2655333)
Hamilton is simply a very risky player for all of his injury and drug history. There's a very real chance that we'll never see Hamilton produce a season like 2007 again. (And even his 2007 was interrupted by injury, of course.) Knowing that, maybe the Reds just felt that it was safest to cash him in now while his value is high.
   16. Oriole Tragic is totally awesome in the postseason Posted: December 28, 2007 at 07:24 PM (#2655338)
#13:

How much "I" can there possibly be in an "FYI" that is based on components you say are meaningless?
   17. Moe Greene Posted: December 28, 2007 at 07:29 PM (#2655348)
If the Reds attribute his ability to stay clean solely to the Narron brothers, then it would make sense for them to dump him now.
   18. Oriole Tragic is totally awesome in the postseason Posted: December 28, 2007 at 07:52 PM (#2655369)
#13:

For that matter, why are the PT projections meaningless? Is that just an arbitrary determination?
   19. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 28, 2007 at 07:58 PM (#2655374)
For that matter, why are the PT projections meaningless? Is that just an arbitrary determination?

Probably b/c they are based on past seasons, so won't reflect role changes.
   20. Swedish Chef Posted: December 28, 2007 at 08:10 PM (#2655391)
How much "I" can there possibly be in an "FYI" that is based on components you say are meaningless?

It's very easy to rescale to a full season, all the information is right there.
   21. Oriole Tragic is totally awesome in the postseason Posted: December 28, 2007 at 08:23 PM (#2655415)
#22:

Not sure I follow you. You're saying I should to take meaningless PT data, and scale it to a full-season?
   22. Craig in MN Posted: December 28, 2007 at 08:24 PM (#2655419)
For that matter, why are the PT projections meaningless? Is that just an arbitrary determination?

I think there is definitely some meaning that can be gleaned from playing time info, but there is no way to know without more context how that might change in the future or effect his future performance. If ZIPS projects some lefty masher (for example) to excel in 200 PAs based on his past performance, that doesn't mean that he'd do just as well in 500 PAs. And there's no way to know if he'll be injured and miss the whole season, or if there will be other injuries that will force him to get 500 PAs, or if some other player will overtake him and force him to the bench moreso than in the past.
   23. Swedish Chef Posted: December 28, 2007 at 08:49 PM (#2655471)
Not sure I follow you. You're saying I should to take meaningless PT data, and scale it to a full-season?

Just multiply everything by 600/(useless PT projection) to remove the dependency on the playing time projection and instead use a season with 600 PA. Of course, first you would have to calculate how many PA is projected (using the AB projection would fail to rescale walks).
   24. Oriole Tragic is totally awesome in the postseason Posted: December 28, 2007 at 08:56 PM (#2655487)
Freaking sweet. I found the ZiPS FAQ. I had to find that link through Google, it's not published anywhere in "Dan's area" that I could see.

Here are the helpful parts (to me):

Q. Oh my God, my favorite team is projected to get 15000 games! Are you the biggest idiot ever?

A. I'm projecting equivalent production. A player with a projection of 230/270/400 is projected to hit that in the majors if he got that estimated playing time in the majors.

Q. How is playing time calculated?

A. Based solely on recent playing time. ZiPS, as a consequence, only projects injuries to the extent that the injuries were properly reflected by the past playing time.


This being the case, I am not sure why Dan completely backs away from claiming to project PT.
   25. greenback calls it soccer Posted: December 28, 2007 at 09:01 PM (#2655496)
If the Reds attribute his ability to stay clean solely to the Narron brothers, then it would make sense for them to dump him now.


I don't know that I'd use the verb "dump" here. If the Narron brothers are critical to Hamilton staying clean, then we're talking about something that goes well beyond MORP or WMV. Back in April there was speculation that Krivsky tried to do something similar with Josh Hancock's life, only there weren't any babysitters around for Hancock.
   26. Darren Posted: December 28, 2007 at 10:52 PM (#2655701)
Forget Hamilton's drug problems for a second. He has very little track record in the majors or minors. 2007 was very nice but there's a lot of variability there. Now, consider that the Reds have a pretty full OF with Bruce likely ready (the Bill James projection for Bruce is sick, BTW). And the Reds have been pretty good in identifying good SP for them.

It's defensible, I'd say.
   27. robinred Posted: December 28, 2007 at 11:28 PM (#2655742)
I defended this trade from the Reds' perspective in the other thread. The problem short-term is that I expect Baker will either give the job to Hopper or the Reds will acquire Pierre.

Long-term, it may work out OK, but it also has the potential to be a huge disaster. I can't say I would or woule not have done it without knowing what the Reds know. That is true of ALL trades to an extent of course, but I think it is particularly true in an unusual case like Josh Hamilton.
   28. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 28, 2007 at 11:29 PM (#2655744)
Now, consider that the Reds have a pretty full OF with Bruce likely ready (the Bill James projection for Bruce is sick, BTW).

Yes but none of Bruce, Dunn or Griffey are centerfields and the supposed 2008 centerfielder (Bruce) has about 250 ABs above A ball. FWIW, Bruce only played 102 games in center of his 132 games in the field last year. Dunn, Griffey and a guy stretched in center look like they'll be horrendous defensively. The Reds had a real need for Hamilton's glove.
   29. Dingbat_Charlie Posted: December 28, 2007 at 11:29 PM (#2655745)
completely unrelated:

I checked out Dan's area from OT's link (#26) and found the reference to 3 Kingdoms. I just finished reading it, and loved it. Zhuge Liang was the Earl Weaver of 3rd century Chinese warfare.

And Guan Yu and Zhang Fei? PED's.
   30. robinred Posted: December 28, 2007 at 11:33 PM (#2655749)
The Reds had a real need for Hamilton's glove.


I have not seen numbers on him, but the Reds' overall OF defense according to the metrics remained very bad last year.
   31. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 28, 2007 at 11:37 PM (#2655756)
Well, Griffey has posted UZRs in the range of -40 more than once (MGL maitains that Griffey is a below replacement level player overall!) so I don't think Willie Mays could have turned that D into something average.
   32. robinred Posted: December 28, 2007 at 11:45 PM (#2655765)
Well, Griffey has posted UZRs in the range of -40 more than once (MGL maitains that Griffey is a below replacement level player overall!) so I don't think Willie Mays could have turned that D into something average
.

That is possible. I just read THT 2008. I noticed that Dewan had Tampa Bay's defense at -107 plays. MGL had it at -102 runs. The Dewan model seems more intuitively likley to be accurate to me, but I don't know. Both had TB dead last in the majors in defense. The Reds, as usual, were in the bottom 5.

The Reds have long needed a top glove man or 2 in the middle of the field. I wanted them to try to sign Everett, and to take a run at Andruw Jones if they were going to move Hamilton or Dunn (I seriously doubt there is any wayJones would have signed in Cincinnati; Everett might have if the money were right).
   33. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 28, 2007 at 11:50 PM (#2655773)
Going by Pinto's PMR on Baseball Musings:

Hamilton ranks 12th of 42 in CF, Dunn ranks 35th of 42 in LF and Griffey is 28th of 35 qualifying players in RF.
   34. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 28, 2007 at 11:51 PM (#2655778)
I think they should have moved Dunn. All indications are that 2008 is his last season in Cincinnati.
   35. robinred Posted: December 29, 2007 at 12:06 AM (#2655797)
I think they should have moved Dunn. All indications are that 2008 is his last season in Cincinnati.


Maybe. Supposedly Castellini wants to keep him. The thing is that Dusty doesn't do rebuilds. Once the Reds hired Baker, whatever one thinks of the hire, it was clear they would be trying to contend in 2008, so they are not going to move Dunn unless they suck again and they do it at the deadline. The issue, in terms of the Reds' parameters, is whether Hamilton for Volquez will help in 2008. I am skeptical but I don't think it was a crazy move.
   36. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 29, 2007 at 12:08 AM (#2655800)
Yeah you're probably right. I wish Joey Votto the best.
   37. Darren Posted: December 29, 2007 at 12:52 AM (#2655834)
FWIW, Dan Sym has Bruce as VG in defense in CF in his ZIPS projections.
   38. Dan Szymborski Posted: December 29, 2007 at 08:11 AM (#2656128)
Heh, didn't notice that the ZiPS FAQ was still googlable. I removed references to it because I wanted to update it, but I hadn't gotten around to it.

Hadn't done much with adding a lot of stuff to Dan's area. I've been holding off as a lot of the stuff I hope to house more permanently on danszymborski.com (or transactionoracle.com or zimsdomain.com or a few others depending on what I decide to use as the main name).
   39. Dan Szymborski Posted: December 29, 2007 at 08:15 AM (#2656130)
This being the case, I am not sure why Dan completely backs away from claiming to project PT.

I have a hard enough time just beating into the general internet public's collective head how a AA player can be projected to have 500 at-bats in the majors. Last thing I need is to start having to explain the more complex discussion about how a projection system can project playing time derived from the past but not role assignment.

And hell, after all, pretty much everyone who does projections is looking for the rates to work out primarily.
   40. Jeff K. Posted: December 29, 2007 at 08:17 AM (#2656131)
danszymborski.com

Oh, the mistyped domain squatting that will go on there. Though I suppose that assumes anyone is going there, anyway.
   41. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: December 30, 2007 at 05:07 AM (#2656693)
Dan Szymbooerskkerskri, would you care to add a mention to Danny Ray!'s projection? Either way - I figure it'll make the DMB release eventually and I'm in no hurry. :)
   42. The District Attorney Posted: December 30, 2007 at 05:48 AM (#2656702)
Yeah, I was extremely curious about the Herrera projection too. Weird-ass player.
   43. Brandon in MO (Yunitility Infielder) Posted: June 05, 2008 at 04:39 AM (#2806514)
I don't think that there has been a trade where one player is on pace to be the best hitter in his league, and the other is on pace to be the best pitcher in his league.
   44. We don't have dahlians at the Palace of Wisdom Posted: June 05, 2008 at 05:10 AM (#2806521)
HAHA YOU SUCK
   45. The Keith Law Blog Blah Blah (battlekow) Posted: June 05, 2008 at 05:16 AM (#2806523)
* ab is away - gone, if anyone talks in the next 25 minutes as me it's bm being an ####### -
[ab] HAHAHA DISREGARD THAT, I SUCK COCKS

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