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Sunday, May 03, 2020

How Shortened Seasons Affect Future Projections

It’s interesting, surprising, and a bit discouraging.  Go read the article and give Fangraphs some traffic.  Click on an ad while you’re there.

Ziggy: social distancing since 1980 Posted: May 03, 2020 at 03:23 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: projections, statistics, strike, zips

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Projecting Team Payrolls for the 2021 Season

What this winter’s free agent market ends up looking like — and how lucrative it proves to be for players — is unsurprisingly very much in flux. The 2020 season is still in flux, and how it plays out, or if it ends up being played at all, will have a significant affect on the offseason. If there’s no season, we know that players will still receive service time, making guys like Mookie Betts, James Paxton, and J.T. Realmuto free agents. Players will receive raises in arbitration. For competitive balance tax purposes, no season would mean no tax payments. The Red Sox would still need to stay under the $210 million tax threshold in order to reset their tax amount, though with 2021 being the final season of the current CBA between the players and owners, the ramifications of such a move are very much unknown and could end up being completely nullified by a new deal.

If some version of the season does get played, there might be slightly fewer questions, but the winter will still bring about considerable uncertainty. With that in mind, and the season still a ways off, let’s take a moment to see how team payrolls are shaping up this offseason. For the graph below, I looked at competitive balance tax payrolls, which take the average annual value of contracts and include around $15 million in benefits, with a few million for 40-man players not on the active roster, as well as expected minimum salaries players. I estimated arbitration-eligible players by giving them a 50% raise over 2020 figures and for the most part, I declined club options. The only options shown as exercised below are for Adam Eaton, Starling Marte, Anthony Rizzo, and Kolten Wong. All others are presumed declined. All figures are from our RosterResource Payroll pages. If no season were to take place, this is what we might see as payroll heading into free agency.

....

These figures are without trades or non-tenders of players in arbitration. The Cubs are at the top at roughly $188 million, with the Astros, Angels, and Yankees not too far behind. All told, these figures add up to $3.86 billion. That is a significant sum, but also consider that at the end of last offseason using the same methodology, the payrolls were $370 million higher. There’s simply a huge number of older, long-term contracts coming off the books at the end of this season. A busy offseason of spending last winter added $476 million to payrolls heading into 2020, an increase in total payroll of a little under 1%, but next year’s free agents are unlikely to replicate that total, which, combined with those big contracts running their course, could amount to a big drop in payroll.

Even under normal circumstances, it looked like payroll in 2021 was going to take a huge dip from previous seasons. With the roughly $850 million coming off the books unlikely to be replaced by raises in arbitration, it would take a massive free agent winter to get anywhere near 2020 figures. And while Mookie Betts is one heck of a headliner, 2020’s supporting cast, populated as it is by players like J.T. Realmuto, George Springer, Trevor Bauer, and Marcus Semien, likely won’t get teams close to last year’s spending even before we consider the fallout out from COVID-19 and its potential effects. It already seemed likely that payrolls would decrease by somewhere close to half a billion dollars in 2021, the final year of the current CBA. If spending is severely curtailed or teams are particularly aggressive with non-tenders in arbitration, the figure could be worse.

A consideration of aspects of the finances of the game for the season after next- something of relevance to take note of, as it could end up important in other regards…..

 

QLE Posted: April 22, 2020 at 01:19 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: dollah dollah bills, y'all, payrolls, projections

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Projection Hindsight Is 20/20 and It’s Totally Awesome

One of the things you have to get used to when you work with projections is being wrong. Like, All. Of. The. Time. While I’d like to believe that the projections are accurate and it’s just real life that mucked things up, that isn’t quite how they work. There are always events you didn’t see coming, assumptions you made erroneously, and just plain old irreducible error, all of which are going to thwart you.

On a basic level, you’re supposed to be wrong. Imagine a world in which you knew, for an exact fact, that every team was a coin flip to win every game. With this perfect knowledge, you’d still expect nearly a quarter of the league to win either 73 games or fewer, or 89 games or more, through nothing but luck. For the math-inclined, this is a hypergeometric distribution, not a binomial one; the coin flips are not independent because the win totals will still add up to 2,430 and one team’s win invariably is another team’s loss. Here’s a quick table for some of the win totals, showing the probability of a team winning exactly X games and how many of the teams you’d expect to have won up to X games:

....

As an example, you’d expect 3.4% of those coin flip teams to win exactly 74 games, with 15% of all teams winning up to 74 games.

But we don’t have anywhere near perfect knowledge about how good a team will be. We’re not even in the same zip code as “near perfect”; we just hope to be on the right continent. As a result, our error bars are going to be significantly larger than even the rather erroneous results you still get with omniscient projections.

One of the best courses I ever took in college was a one-off course concerning Predicting The Future- as a result, this sort of consideration is of deep interest to me.

 

QLE Posted: March 24, 2020 at 12:52 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: dan szymborski, projections, where did we go wrong

Thursday, March 12, 2020

2020 MLB Preview: Projecting Every Team’s Record and a World Series Winner

A new baseball season is nearly upon us. That means SI’s annual MLB Preview issue will hit newsstands—and your mailbox, if you subscribe here—shortly. We’ve got scouting reports on all 30 clubs, featuring terrific work from Joe Sheehan, Craig Goldstein, Emma Baccellieri and Matt Martell.

Each team preview runs through everything you need to know in 2020, and a snippet of how we think our 2030 MLB preview will read. Below you’ll find our printed postseason prediction and links to all 30 previews. Enjoy.

....

World Series Prediction: Yankees over Dodgers

It’s hard to pick against the two best teams in each league making it to the Fall Classic, with plenty of star power to boot. Mookie Betts and Gerrit Cole each make it to the World Series in the first year with their new teams, but it’s Cole who walks away with a ring just before Betts’s free-agent bonanza begins.

 

QLE Posted: March 12, 2020 at 01:03 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: playoffs, predictions, projections, season preview

Sunday, March 08, 2020

Mike Trout’s Inevitable Decline

Meditations on death.

Ziggy: social distancing since 1980 Posted: March 08, 2020 at 08:37 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, mike trout, projections

Saturday, February 22, 2020

The Obscenely Early ZiPS Projected Standings

Naturally, once the ZiPS elves have finished baking the ZiPS, the first thing I want to do — at least after actually getting some sleep — is to crank out some ZiPS projected standings. So let’s wrap up ZiPS Week (I’m possibly the only person calling it this) by doing the first run of the ZiPS projected standings for the 2020 season.

The methodology I use is not identical to the one we use in our Standings, so there will naturally be some important differences in the results. So how does ZiPS calculate the season?

Stored within ZiPS is the first through 99th percentile projections for each player it projects. I start by making a generalized depth chart, using our depth charts as an initial starting point. Since these are my curated projections, I then make changes based on my personal feelings on who will receive playing time, as filtered by arbitrary whimsy my logic and reasoning. ZiPS then generates a million versions of each team in Monte Carlo fashion. The computational algorithms, that is, not dressing up in a tuxedo and playing baccarat like James Bond.

After this is done, then ZiPS applies another set of algorithms with a generalized distribution of injury risk, which changes the baseline PAs/IPs selected for each player. Of note is that higher-percentile projections already have more playing time than lower-percentile projections before this step. It then automatically “fills in” playing time from the next players on the list (proportionally) to get to 700 plate appearances for each position and 1458 innings.

As always, something of interest to check at the end of the season, to see what concordance between these predictions and the actual results was present.

 

QLE Posted: February 22, 2020 at 01:04 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: projections, zips

Wednesday, February 05, 2020

MLB win totals: How we see the 2020 season playing out

It’s not quite time to declare a state of normalcy in baseball, not when the rules annually change on a whim, or rotting franchises compel fans to stay away in droves, or the actual sphere placed into play performs as predictively as a tech stock.

Yet as spring training camps prepare to open and the off-season grinds of established and aspiring stars alike churn toward the 2020 season, the competitive landscape feels far healthier than Februarys of the recent past.

Every meaningful free agent has a home. A handful of teams have pivoted from endless tanking to something resembling competition.

And as USA TODAY Sports releases its projected win totals for 2020, it feels far less like a formality and a bit more like a journey into the unknown.

So, how reliable do we find these projections to be?

 

QLE Posted: February 05, 2020 at 01:38 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: projections

Tuesday, January 07, 2020

MLB.com: Only 23, A 2-Time All-Star ... And He Could Get Better

If true, a pretty good return for not much more than a fortnight of Aroldis Chapman:

FanGraphs senior writer Dan Szymborski hasn’t released his full ZiPS projections for 2020 yet, but he did give a sneak peek at the forecast for Torres’ next five years on Friday as part of his annual recap of the Yankees’ season. Feast your eyes, Yankees fans:

2020: .287/.348/.557; 136 OPS+; 41 HR
2021: .292/.357/.588; 146 OPS+; 44 HR
2022: .289/.357/.586; 145 OPS+; 44 HR
2023: .289/.359/.602; 150 OPS+; 47 HR
2024: .287/.360/.601; 150 OPS+; 47 HR

Make it happen, Lord ZIPS.


Thursday, January 19, 2012

Tiger Tales: Replacing V-Mart

Lee Panas projects Victor Martinez’ 2012 production, and that of some possible replacements.

Would Martinez have had a WAR of 5.0 again in 2012?  Probably not. He’d likely hit about as well overall (lower batting average, more homers).  However, he might lose a fraction of a win by not catching.  More importantly, we would not expect him to come anywhere close to his 2011 performance in situational hitting.  Even if he we think he would have hit a little better in clutch situations than other at bats in 2012, we would estimate that he would have had a WAR of about 3.0.

So, we have two questions: (1) How much will the Tigers lose going from Martinez in 2011 (5.0 WAR) to Player X in 2012?  (2) How much would they have lost going from Martinez’s expected performance in 2012 (3.0 WAR) to Player X in 2012?

Mr Dashwood Posted: January 19, 2012 at 09:38 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: projections, tigers

The Platoon Advantage: Jack Morris is going to be a Hall of Famer, and that’s OK

BTW…I’m compiling a (H/T Moral Idiot) massivo (HA!) list of BBWAA ballotears for their Pro-Bonds/Clemens (9 as of now) ~ Anti-Bonds/Clemens (12 as of now) promised HOF ballots.

For a second thing: it’s getting to be a cliche by now, but it’s absolutely true that 2013 is going to be completely unlike any ballot that has come before. Jaffe’s reasoning is that “Morris probably won’t move up enough because it is such a strong batch of new guys.” I don’t think so. There are certainly a lot of should-be slam dunks coming in, but the only new guy who figures to finish particularly strong in the voting is Craig Biggio, and he’s far from a first-ballot lock. By and large, the guys interested in voting for Morris aren’t the same ones who might be tempted to bump Morris off because they’re voting for Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens and Biggio, and/or some combination of deserving first-timers or holdovers like Mike Piazza, Sammy Sosa, Curt Schilling, Kenny Lofton, Mark McGwire, Rafael Palmeiro and Edgar Martinez. If anything, the vast majority of them will bump any of those guys off (even Bonds or Clemens, maybe especially Bonds or Clemens) in favor of the presumptively “clean” Morris, who won’t have the fourteen shots left most of these guys will (assuming they get 5% of the vote, which I think will be a problem for Lofton and possibly Palmeiro).

Rather, the real 1999-like year, in terms of players the voters are actually likely to want to enshrine, is the following year, 2014: Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, and Frank Thomas are all pretty close to first-ballot shoo-ins. You might as well think of 2013 as Morris’ last year on the ballot, because he’s not going in with those dudes.

So, that’s why I think Morris goes in next year. As amazing as the talent on the 2013 ballot is, it’s not going to pull many votes off of Morris, thanks to the “PE"D questions and because it’ll be viewed as his last realistic shot. It’s 2013 or nothing…and for 75%-plus of the voters, it’s going to be 2013. He’s going in. Might as well get used to it.

Repoz Posted: January 19, 2012 at 06:01 AM | 193 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, history, projections, sabermetrics

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

RLYW: Salvaging a Sunken cost

Burnett projects to have an RA of 5.03 in CAIRO.  The following possible starting pitchers project better than that.

CC Sabathia (3.57)
Michael Pineda (4.37)
Freddy Garcia (4.55)
Brad Meyers (4.56)
Hiroki Kuroda (4.57)
Phil Hughes (4.63)
Ivan Nova (4.93)
...

If that’s true, then every start that goes to Burnett is a start that should be going to one of the above.

...

Unfortunately, since Burnett is owed $33 million over the next two years, the Yankees probably feel obligated to try and get some value out of him.

I don’t think they can do that by pitching him…. trading Burnett’s bad contract to another team for their bad contract might be a way to recoup some of that value.

Mr Dashwood Posted: January 17, 2012 at 12:21 PM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, cubs, mets, projections, white sox, yankees

Monday, January 16, 2012

THT: Jaffe: The possible upcoming Cooperstown ballot apocalypse

What should happen? Well, among non-Bonds/Clements voters, Biggio should get around 85 percent. With the others, he’ll get less in what’s already a crowded ballot for people willing to support PED-rs. I’d guess he gets 65-70 percent of their vote. Maybe less.

Upshot: Biggio has a very good shot to get in. Assuming he gets 85 percent of the non-Bonds/Clemens guys (and he really should, given the clustering of Molitor/Winfield/Murray right at 85 percent), and assuming Bonds and Clemens get about 40 percent of the vote, Biggio needs only 60 percent of the votes from the supporters of Bonds and Clemens. That should happen.

Actually, I find this a bit surprising. A week ago, I assumed that Biggio was doomed on this messy ballot. That would set off the real nightmare, because if everyone from this year’s vote went into next year, it would be that much harder for anyone to rise up.

But Biggio should go in next year. No one else should. If Fisk couldn’t get elected as the fourth-best new guy in 1999, Piazza won’t in 2012. Schilling will finish further down, and Sosa may be under 10 percent. As for the backloggers, Morris probably won’t move up enough because it is such a strong batch of new guys. I think he’ll get close but ultimately have to go to the VC.

VC = Viva Caputo!

Repoz Posted: January 16, 2012 at 02:17 PM | 48 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, history, projections, site news

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Phil Rogers: Bean-counting GM Beane deserves a better place to work

And furthermore

(bullet) MLB should have a minimum payroll. It would require all teams to at least attempt to be somewhat competitive, and fairness is an issue. For instance, how much of an advantage will the Angels and Rangers have in the wild-card race because they have 19 games each against Oakland?

(bullet) According to Bill James’ projections, the Athletics’ most productive hitter next season will be DH Brandon Allen, with a slash line of .243/.327/.449, 22 home runs and 71 RBIs.

(bullet) Melvin is a major upgrade in the dugout, probably the best manager they’ve had since Tony La Russa (although Art Howe was much better than the movie’s portrayal by Philip Seymour Hoffman suggests).

(bullet) MLB scoffs at Forbes’ projections, but they’re the best available.

(bullet) Wolff is very close to Selig, but so far that does not appear to have gained him any advantages.

(bullitt) There are bad writers and there are good writers - and then there’s Rogers.

Repoz Posted: January 15, 2012 at 09:07 PM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, business, media, projections, sabermetrics

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Fangraphs: Can Yoenis Cespedes Showcase Talents In MLB?

Os as shape-shifter deluxe, Mitch Williams said the other day…“All Yoenis Cespedes does is hit ground balls!”

So although Cespedes was definitely one of the top power hitters in the Cuban League, his exploits are hardly all-world or necessarily the best in his own country. The Cuban parks seem to be very difficult to pitch in. According to Davenport’s translations — which probably have to be taken with a pound of salt given how few players make the transition from Cuban baseball to American professional baseball — Cespedes’s numbers still work out to above-average major league power. I don’t think this is a terribly surprising conclusion — it’s difficult to hit 33 home runs in 350 at-bats in any league. It just doesn’t necessarily mean a 60-homer season is coming in the states.

The next question relates to plate discipline.

...Cespedes has shown remarkable improvement from a hack-tastic first season, all the way to the point where he walked more times than he struck out in 2011. However, there is the question of how many of those walks were intentional — he was in the process of setting a new home run record, after all. Either way, Cespedes made excellent contact in each of the past four seasons and although his strikeouts will undoubtedly rise against the higher talent in the MLB, we shouldn’t expect him to be the next Austin Jackson.

...Just looking at the statistics Cespedes compiled in Cuba, there isn’t a glaring weakness which looks to tank his game upon landing with an American (or Torontonian) squad. He was as complete as a player can be in any league. Much of his value depends on his ability to play center field, of which there seems to be optimism around scouts. His Cuban numbers seem to suggest above-average power for the position already, and with any sort of plate discipline he has the ability to push an All-Star level in MLB. With his power and his superior athleticism and strength, the risk factor for Cespedes seems lower than with other relative unknown players, and the reward if he reaches his potential could be incredible.

Repoz Posted: January 14, 2012 at 06:51 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: international, projections, sabermetrics

Goldman: The Montero-Pineda Trade: Rotation Upgrade at a Sustainable Cost

Or as Barnald points out…“But this is the part of the upgrade that scares me!”

Pineda’s fastball sits around 95 and goes higher, and he has a swing-and-miss slider to go with it. There is also a changeup, but it’s notional and—well, you know all of this stuff if you’ve been on line at all today. Here are the negatives you’re going to hear about:

• He dominated right-handed hitters, but the lack of a good change means that lefties hit, well, still not well, but better.
• His ERA was 2.92 in pitcher-friendly Safeco, 4.40 on the road.
• His first-half ERA was 3.03, his second-half ERA was 5.12.
• He has fly-ball tendencies, which is a problem in Yankee Stadium.
• Batters hit .261 on balls in play, and such things don’t last.
• They could have gotten Cliff Lee or Felix Hernandez for him.
• He could get hurt.
• He cost the Yankees Jesus Montero, a very fine young hitter.

Repoz Posted: January 14, 2012 at 08:24 AM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: mariners, projections, sabermetrics, yankees

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Corcoran: The Hall of Fame chances of Jorge Posada, baseball’s Ringo Starr

Yeah, but shouldn’t Posada then be put through the Jim Keltner List and not the Ken Keltner List?

Yet, even moreso than his Beatles analog, Ringo Starr, Jorge Posada was an equal partner in baseball’s fab four, the quartet of Yankees teammates who debuted in 1995 and won seven pennants and five World Series together (though Posada, who played in just eight major league games in 1996, sat out the first of those).

That Posada is so comparable to Ringo, “the funny one,” who wrote just two Beatles songs and two of the worst at that, helps explain why he has had such a hard time being taken seriously as an all-time great at his position. However, news of his impending retirement, first reported by WFAN beat reporter Sweeny Murti last weekend, gives us a much-needed occasion to revisit Posada’s significance in baseball history. It’s fitting that the news about Posada arrived just days before the announcement of this year’s Hall of Fame class, as a case can be made that Posada is worthy of enshrinement, and it has nothing to do with his having kept time with sure-fire first-ballot inductees Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera or fellow borderline case Andy Pettitte, his Core Four brethren.

...Do the player’s numbers meet Hall of Fame standards?

This refers to James’ own formula-based Hall of Fame Standards, which are listed on the player pages at Baseball-Reference. Posada falls just short, scoring 40 points against the average Hall of Famer’s total of 50.

Jay Jaffe’s JAWS system has Posada even closer (40.2 points to the Hall standard of 42.6), but still just shy.

Repoz Posted: January 12, 2012 at 01:00 PM | 60 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, history, projections, sabermetrics, yankees

MLB: Cubs front office calls on Bloomberg Sports

I knew he’d miss Bill James…

The Cubs are using every potential avenue to improve their club. Chicago announced Thursday that it will partner with Bloomberg Sports—a company already allied with MLB.com for fantasy baseball—to design a new player evaluation system for the team’s baseball operations department.

The player evaluation system is expected to combine video with an extensive database on all professional players, and it will also include customized technology to assist the evaluation process. The Cubs will be able to access their system via laptop and will have mobile capability, and the two sides will begin development and implementation of the program immediately.

“We are excited to partner with Bloomberg Sports and benefit from their world-renowned expertise in analytics and information management,” said Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein. “The management and analysis of data—whether it be scouting reports, statistics, medical information or video—is a critical component of our operation.

“We look forward to developing a customized program that utilizes the most advanced and efficient technology available in the marketplace today to facilitate quicker, easier and more accurate access to all the sources of information we use to make baseball decisions.”

Repoz Posted: January 12, 2012 at 12:50 PM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, projections, sabermetrics

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Don Malcolm: PERSPECTIVIZING POSADA

Or as Rob Neyer just tweeted…“Good news! Still early January, and Don Malcolm’s already gotten in a gratuitous insult. With that out of the way…”

The thought of playing anywhere else probably also influenced Posada. Of all the ballparks in all the major leagues, the one he really didn’t want to walk out of (to rework that Casablanca reference just a bit…) was New Yankee Stadium. The revamped “House That Ruth George Built” proved to be exceptionally cozy for Jorge: in the three years he played there (at the advanced age of 37-39), the park literally kept his career going. He hit .302 there, with an OPS of .938. On the road, those number were considerably more wan—as in .209 and a .665 OPS. In 2011, Posada hit .165 away from the Bronx, with a .524 OPS.

Of course, we’d be remiss if we didn’t work in a couple of “midwestern angst” digs into this. First, Rob Neyer’s knee-jerk notion that Posada was held back from enough career games in 1996-99 to cost him a slot in Cooperstown wasn’t really worth the time it took to write the column. (That’s the Damoclean sword of the Internet—it just coerces that empty content out of you…)

There’s a good chance that Jorge will end up in the Hall—but it will be sometime after 2030 or so, when many more things have shaken out. Second, it turns out that Posada’s very favorite place to hit is—you guessed it—Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City (.340 BA, 1.011 OPS).

Repoz Posted: January 10, 2012 at 08:32 PM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, history, media, projections, sabermetrics, site news, yankees

MLB.com writers weigh in on 2013 HOF ballot

NEXT YEAR’S ASSHATINESS…TODAY!! (and I didn’t even get a chance to close my scurverzoid HOF notebook up!)

Hal Bodley
I will not vote for anyone linked to steroids. Never! That means Bonds, Clemens, Sosa fall into that category and will not get my vote. I do not feel Piazza, Schilling and Biggio are legitimate first-ballot candidates. So the only candidate at this point I’m certain I’ll vote for will be Morris—in his 14th try. Between now and then I might change my mind and go for Bagwell.

Ken Gurnick
I’m not voting for anybody from the steroid era.

Richard Justice
Voting for: Biggio, Bagwell, Raines, Morris, Fred McGriff, Piazza, Schilling.

Steroids will dominate the conversation because Bonds, Clemens and Sosa will be on the ballot for the first time. Piazza, like Bagwell, has been connected to steroids by nothing more than rumors, and that’s not good enough for me. Schilling is a lot like Morris in that he was at his best when the games meant the most.

Terrence Moore
Beginning in 2013, I’ll consider something even more so than I have before, and they are two words on my Hall of Fame list of rules: “integrity” and “character.” It says voters must take those words into account when selecting Cooperstown, folks. So no Bonds, Clemens or Sosa for me.

Repoz Posted: January 10, 2012 at 04:09 PM | 76 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, history, projections, sabermetrics, steroids

Monday, January 09, 2012

MLB.com writers cast their HOF ballots

Time was necessary for me to warm up to…the MLB.com ballots!

Carrie Muskat
Ballot: Larkin

I did not vote for Barry Larkin in the past, but after re-examining his numbers and talking to baseball people, I cast a ballot for the Reds shortstop this year. I have high standards, as do the ballplayers already in the Hall. Larkin not only impressed me with his stats but his role on the team as captain. Character counts in Cooperstown.

Terrence Moore
Ballot: Larkin, McGriff, Raines, Smith

They all had this in common: All were dominant at something (or several things) for long stretches. That’s the stuff of Cooperstown. Plus, they all had long Major League careers that didn’t have too many drops off the cliff surrounding their periods of greatness.

Marty Noble
Ballot: Larkin, Morris

Teams don’t win without reliable shortstopping. Larkin’s defense was reliable to the nth degree and occasionally spectacular. The Reds captain was a productive and clutch performer when he wasn’t in the field, and he was a fearsome postseason force.

Time was necessary for me to warm up to Morris. This ballot carries my first vote for him. My criteria include being the best at what you do for an extended period. The leading winner in a decade qualifies there, and Morris’ postseason resume is exquisite.

Repoz Posted: January 09, 2012 at 06:10 AM | 65 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, history, projections, sabermetrics

Friday, January 06, 2012

Cameron: Adam Jones, Unfinished Product

I can’t imagine why the Braves would balk about trading their starting LF, a #3 starter AND “prime” pitching prospects for a new Jeff Francoeur…


Thursday, January 05, 2012

Speier: Pedroia: 2011 was best offensive season

Diffraction-unlimited!

In 2008, Pedroia hit .326 with a .376 OBP, .493 slugging mark, .869 OPS, 17 homers, 54 doubles, 20 steals and 118 runs. In 2011, Pedroia hit .307/.387/.474/.861 with 21 homers, 37 doubles, 36 steals and 102 runs. The 28-year-old suggested that he had a more mature approach to hitting and a better understanding of how he could help his lineup, a development best evidenced by his career-high 86 walks.

“To be honest with you, last year, I thought I had a better year than 2008. I walked a lot more. I stole more bases. I didn’t get there with the runs scored, but I think as an offensive player, I remember in ’08, I think I walked 50 times,” Pedroia said. “I was more of a hacker. I was up there trying to create instead of letting the game come to me. I was successful doing it. I found some holes. Let’s not kid ourselves, some balls fell in. It was good. I’m not saying it was a lucky .326 or whatever I hit, but now I’m smarter. I take my walks, which helps [Adrian Gonzalez], which helps [Kevin Youkilis]. If I’m on base more, our team is going to be that much better.

“I was able to do that last year. It helped me out. It helped put our team in a better position to score runs. I thought last year was probably my best offensive year.”

...“For an offensive approach, for me, I never look at numbers for evaluating how I was that year offensively. There’s only so many things I can change. You can hit the ball on a line five times, they catch all of them and you have nothing to show for it. You can hit five bleeders and they all fall in and you’re the greatest player ever,” said Pedroia. “For me, I only want to get better every year. I want to get smarter every year. I want to know how pitchers are going to pitch to me, if I need to take more walks, steal more bases, score more runs.”

Repoz Posted: January 05, 2012 at 06:09 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: history, projections, red sox, sabermetrics

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

MLB: Astros add two to baseball operations staff

Astroland: A Team’s Obsessive Bid to Win the World’s Most Ruthless Baseball League!

The Astros have hired Sig Mejdal as Director of Decision Sciences and Stephanie Wilka as Coordinator of Amateur Scouting, General Manager Jeff Luhnow announced today.

Mejdal, 46, had worked with the St. Louis Cardinals since 2005, most recently as Director, Amateur Draft Analytics. While with the Cardinals, he was involved with modeling, analysis and data-driven decision making throughout all levels of the organization and was a key contributor in the draft decision processes that led to more Major League players than any other organization during that time frame.

Mejdal earned two engineering degrees at the University of California at Davis and later completed advanced degrees in Operations Research and Cognitive Psychology/Human Factors. He has also worked at Lockheed Martin in California and for NASA. Mejdal has been active in baseball statistics and analytics since earning his membership in The Society for Baseball Research (SABR) while in grade school.

Repoz Posted: January 03, 2012 at 07:20 PM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, business, media, projections, sabermetrics

THT: Jaffe: Next week’s Cooperstown election results today

From the Daniel Dunglas Home of predictions…Chris Jaffe produces…

Based on the above criteria and my own semi-informed guesses, here are my predictions alongside last year’s performance to show the predicted change:

Name	      2012	2011
Barry Larkin	82	62
Jack Morris	65	54
Jeff Bagwell	54	42
Lee Smith	52	45
Tim Raines	52	38
Edgar Martinez	39	33
Alan Trammell	32	24
Larry Walker	27	20
Mark McGwire	24	20
Fred McGriff	24	18
Dale Murphy	19	13
Don Mattingly	18	14
Rafael Palmeiro	15	11
Bernie Williams	12	XX
The Rest	 3	XX


That’s 5.18 names per ballot, which would be a clear all-time low – and yet it might still be too high. You’re better taking the under than the over on 5.18 names/ballot.

Good news for Reds fans – Barry Larkin is going in easily. A guy in the low 60s rarely makes the jump over 75 percent like this, but this isn’t a normal year.

Repoz Posted: January 03, 2012 at 05:22 AM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, history, projections, site news

Friday, December 30, 2011

2012 Hall Of Fame Ballot Collecting Gizmo

UPDATE (1:40) ~~~ 148 Full Ballots.

89.2 - B. Larkin
58.8 - Jack (The Jack) Morris
56.8 - Bagwell
52.0 - T. Raines
44.6 - Lee Smith
36.5 - Trammell
32.4 - E. Martinez
23.6 - F. McGriff
18.2 - L. Walker
17.6 - McGwire
12.2 - D. Murphy
11.5 - R. Palmiero
10.1 - Mattingly
  3.4 - Bernie Williams !
  1.4 - J. Gonzalez
  0.7 - V. Castilla
  0.7 - B. Mueller
  0.7 - T. Salmon
  0.7 - P. Rose (write-in)

As usual, if you come across any ballots…send them in!

 

Repoz Posted: December 30, 2011 at 03:20 PM | 300 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, projections

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