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Daily Notes: High-Quality Information for Everyone’s Use

Posted By Carson Cistulli On April 23, 2013 @ 11:19 am In Daily Notes | 8 Comments

Table of Contents
Here’s the table of contents for today’s edition of the Daily Notes.

1. Three Notable California League Peformances
2. SCOUT Leaderboards: High-A California League
3. Today’s Notable Games (Including MLB.TV Free Game)
4. Today’s Game Odds, Translated into Winning Percentages

Three Notable California League Peformances
The leaderboards for the High-A California League are below. Here are brief notes on three players from those leaderboards — like who they are mostly, for example.

• “But that was in the California League” is a reasonable comment to append to any statement one might make with regard to a particularly promising line from a hitting prospect. It’s a comment one might reasonably append, as well, to the observation that Oakland first-base prospect Max Muncy‘s has eight home runs in his first 85 plate appearances this season — especially in light of how Muncy hit only four of them in 274 plate appearances last season in the Midwest League. One might say all of this with one caveat: Muncy’s raw numbers are excellent so far, but so are his numbers/rates relative to league average. He’s both hitting home runs and controlling the strike zone better than his peers in the California League.

• Diamondbacks right-hander Archie Bradley is combining performance with his already excellent pedigree. Here’s where he ranked on Marc Hulet’s preseason top-100 list: 26th. And on Baseball America’s: 25th. And on Bullpen Banter’s: 26th, again. Bradley has made four starts and recorded at least eight strikeouts in each of them. According to Jason Cole of Baseball Prospectus, Bradley was sitting at 93-95 in a late-March spring-training start.

• San Francisco right-handed prospect Clayton Blackburn appeared on last season’s final SCOUT pitching leaderboard for all of Class A — not very far behind, in fact, both Jose Fernandez and Dylan Bundy — on the strength of a 143:18 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 131.1 innings. Marc Hulet ranked him second among all Giants prospects this offseason, noting that Blackburn “possesses a four-pitch mix with above-average control and solid command. He also features a potentially-plus curveball, slider and changeup.”

SCOUT Leaderboards: High-A California League
Previously considered: Triple-A International League (April 10) / Triple-A Pacific Coast League (April 11) / Double-A Eastern League (April 12) / Double-A Southern League (April 16) / Double-A Texas League (April 17) / High-A Carolina League (April 22).

Below are the present SCOUT hitting and pitching leaderboards for the High-A California League.

“What is a SCOUT leaderboard, gentleman author?” perhaps a person is asking somewhere — to which question that same author has provided a (hopefully) reasonable answer here. In brief, however, it’s this: an attempt to use our knowledge of certain metrics, and at what sample sizes they become reliable, to measure run production and prevention in instances where small samples prevail.

Below, as I say, are those leaderboards for the High-A California League. (Note: statistics current as of Monday.)

SCOUT Leaderboard: California League Hitters (Overall)
Below is the current SCOUT batting leaderboard for the High-A California League. SCOUT+ combines regressed home-run, walk, and strikeout rates in a FIP-like equation to produce a result not unlike wRC+, where 100 is league average (in this case, for all California League hitters) and above 100 is above average. xHR%, xBB%, and xK% stand for expected home run, walk, and strikeout rate, respectively.

Player Team Age PA HR BB K xHR% xBB% xK% SCOUT+
Max Muncy Athletics (A+) 22 85 8 16 12 4.2% 13.2% 17.8% 147
Dan Paolini Mariners (A+) 23 74 2 13 9 2.3% 12.2% 17.4% 121
Nolan Fontana Astros (A+) 22 82 2 17 15 2.2% 13.9% 20.2% 120
Andrew Aplin Astros (A+) 22 74 1 11 5 2.0% 11.2% 14.7% 120
Raywilly Gomez Diamondbacks (A+) 23 74 0 17 10 1.6% 14.2% 18.1% 118
Matt Duffy Astros (A+) 24 58 4 5 8 3.1% 9.0% 19.1% 117
Robert Kral Padres (A+) 24 37 3 6 6 2.9% 10.4% 21.0% 116
Lee Orr Padres (A+) 24 61 5 5 13 3.4% 8.8% 22.0% 115
Preston Tucker Astros (A+) 22 75 5 5 14 3.3% 8.2% 20.6% 115
Dominic D’Anna Reds (A+) 24 74 3 7 12 2.6% 9.2% 19.4% 112

SCOUT Leaderboard: California League Hitters (Age 22 and Under)
Here are the top-10 batters of the High-A California League who might still, because of their age, be considered prospects — again, as determined by the methodology explained above.

Player Team Age PA HR BB K xHR% xBB% xK% SCOUT+
Max Muncy Athletics (A+) 22 85 8 16 12 4.2% 13.2% 17.8% 147
Nolan Fontana Astros (A+) 22 82 2 17 15 2.2% 13.9% 20.2% 120
Andrew Aplin Astros (A+) 22 74 1 11 5 2.0% 11.2% 14.7% 120
Preston Tucker Astros (A+) 22 75 5 5 14 3.3% 8.2% 20.6% 115
Jacob Lamb Diamondbacks (A+) 22 23 2 7 7 2.7% 11.6% 23.7% 111
Travis Jankowski Padres (A+) 22 74 0 8 6 1.6% 9.7% 15.4% 110
Austin Hedges Padres (A+) 20 62 1 7 8 2.0% 9.8% 18.5% 109
Alex Yarbrough Angels (A+) 21 78 2 5 12 2.3% 8.1% 18.8% 106
Chris Taylor Mariners (A+) 22 89 0 16 20 1.5% 13.1% 22.5% 104
Ryan Casteel Rockies (A+) 22 29 3 0 8 3.0% 7.8% 23.5% 104

SCOUT Leaderboard: California League Pitchers (Overall)
Below is the current SCOUT pitching leaderboard for the High-A California League. SCOUT- combines regressed strikeout and walk rates in a kwERA-like equation to produce a number not unlike ERA-, where 100 is league average (in this case, for all California League pitchers) and below 100 is better than average. xK% and xBB% stand for expected strikeout and walk rate, respectively.

Player Team Age G GS IP TBF K BB xK% xBB% SCOUT-
Archie Bradley Diamondbacks (A+) 20 4 4 23.2 94 35 7 31.7% 8.8% 73
Bryce Bandilla Giants (A+) 23 6 0 11.0 44 24 7 31.9% 9.6% 75
Jacob Brown Athletics (A+) 26 7 0 13.0 49 19 0 27.8% 8.3% 83
Carlos Contreras Reds (A+) 22 4 4 20.2 81 27 6 28.4% 8.8% 83
Andrew Barbosa Diamondbacks (A+) 25 3 3 16.0 67 25 11 29.1% 10.0% 84
Travis Ballew Astros (A+) 22 6 0 6.2 28 15 3 28.3% 9.2% 84
Edwin Escobar Giants (A+) 21 3 3 14.2 56 20 2 27.4% 8.5% 84
Clayton Blackburn Giants (A+) 20 3 3 17.0 62 21 2 27.2% 8.4% 85
Jonathan Joseph Athletics (A+) 25 6 0 10.0 37 15 1 27.0% 8.7% 86
Luis Cruz Astros (A+) 22 4 2 16.7 65 22 8 27.4% 9.5% 87

SCOUT Leaderboard: California League Pitchers (Starters Only)
Here are the top-10 pitchers in the High-A California League who have made at least half of their appearances as starts — again, as determined by the methodology explained above.

Player Team Age G GS IP TBF K BB xK% xBB% SCOUT-
Archie Bradley Diamondbacks (A+) 20 4 4 23.2 94 35 7 31.7% 8.8% 73
Carlos Contreras Reds (A+) 22 4 4 20.2 81 27 6 28.4% 8.8% 83
Andrew Barbosa Diamondbacks (A+) 25 3 3 16.0 67 25 11 29.1% 10.0% 84
Edwin Escobar Giants (A+) 21 3 3 14.2 56 20 2 27.4% 8.5% 84
Clayton Blackburn Giants (A+) 20 3 3 17.0 62 21 2 27.2% 8.4% 85
Luis Cruz Astros (A+) 22 4 2 16.2 65 22 8 27.4% 9.5% 87
Benjamin Alsup Rockies (A+) 24 4 4 20.0 87 26 7 26.8% 8.9% 87
Kramer Sneed Angels (A+) 24 3 3 16.1 60 19 2 26.2% 8.5% 88
Frank Garces Padres (A+) 23 3 3 14.0 60 18 3 25.5% 8.6% 90
Andrew Granier Athletics (A+) 24 4 4 20.0 89 26 12 26.5% 9.8% 91

Today’s Notable Games (Including MLB.TV Free Game)
Kansas City at Detroit | 19:05 ET
Max Scherzer has struck out precisely two-fifths of the 75 batters he’s faced so far this season and is also the hero of a real-time epic poem called The Life and Philosophy of Max Scherzer, which he himself is writing in a meter of his own invention.

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: Detroit Radio

Los Angeles NL at New York NL | 19:10 ET ***MLB.TV Free Game***
The author is preaching to a figurative choir when he announces to the readership that Clayton Kershaw (28.2 IP, 77 xFIP-, 0.6 WAR) is very good. He’s preaching to an actual choir when he says: “Please, stop singing and being in my one-bedroom apartment. How did you get in here, anyway. Please stop, whatever the answer. I have to finish these Notes.”

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: New York NL Television

Chicago NL at Cincinnati | 19:10 ET
Left-hander Tony Cingrani struck out over a third of the batters he faced in his first major-league start last week against Miami — and did so, as expected, with a fastball-heavy approach (81.4%, it seems). Note: perhaps watch this on the Cubs feed because, among other reasons, Cubs broadcaster Jim Deshaies is a scholar and a gentleman and maybe reading this.

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: Chicago NL Television

Today’s Game Odds, Translated into Winning Percentages
Note: the very proprietary and also critically acclaimed NERD game scores will become available again at the end of April/beginning of May.

Here — for purposes entirely of entertainment and not for gambling, which is a Scourge of Propriety — are all of today’s games with moneyline odds (from relatively “sharp” sportsbook Pinnacle Sports) translated into projected winning percentages (and adjusted to account for the vigorish).

Games are listed in Eastern Time, and presented as they appear at Pinnacle — which appears to be in order of (a) National League and then (b) American League and, finally, then (c) interleague play.

***Note: the following does not include (because no odds were available for them on Tuesday morning) either the first (15:10 ET, Mike Minor vs. Jeff Francis) or second (20:40 ET, Julio Teheran vs. Jon Garland) game of the Atlanta-Colorado doubleheader.***

Game Teams Starters IP xFIP- WAR —– Line Win%
19:05 St. Louis Cardinals Adam Wainwright 29.0 52 1.5 | 1.94 50.5%
ET Washington Nationals Ross Detwiler 20.0 103 0.4 | 1.98 49.5%
|
19:05 Pittsburgh Pirates Jeff Locke 15.2 147 -0.4 | 2.44 40.2%
ET Philadelphia Phillies Cole Hamels 23.2 110 0.1 | 1.64 59.8%
|
19:10 Chicago Cubs Carlos Villanueva 21.0 88 0.2 | 2.47 39.7%
ET Cincinnati Reds Tony Cingrani 5.0 65 0.1 | 1.63 60.3%
|
19:10 Los Angeles Dodgers Clayton Kershaw 28.2 77 0.6 | 1.70 57.7%
ET New York Mets Jon Niese 23.2 116 0.1 | 2.32 42.3%
|
22:10 Milwaukee Brewers Yovani Gallardo 22.1 104 0.4 | 1.80 54.4%
ET San Diego Padres Clayton Richard 15.1 141 -0.4 | 2.15 45.6%
|
22:15 Arizona Diamondbacks Patrick Corbin 19.0 107 0.3 | 2.22 44.2%
ET San Francisco Giants Matt Cain 22.2 109 -0.1 | 1.76 55.8%
|
18:30 Oakland Athletics Bartolo Colon 19.0 93 0.4 | 2.08 47.1%
ET Boston Red Sox Alfredo Aceves 14.1 118 -0.3 | 1.86 52.9%
|
19:05 Kansas City Royals Wade Davis 16.0 80 0.3 | 2.54 38.6%
ET Detroit Tigers Max Scherzer 19.0 47 0.9 | 1.60 61.4%
|
19:05 Toronto Blue Jays R.A. Dickey 23.0 99 0.2 | 1.87 52.4%
ET Baltimore Orioles Miguel Gonzalez 18.0 147 0.0 | 2.06 47.6%
|
19:10 New York Yankees Phil Hughes 14.0 103 -0.2 | 2.58 38.0%
ET Tampa Bay Rays David Price 23.0 84 0.0 | 1.58 62.0%
|
20:10 Cleveland Indians Zach McAllister 17.1 91 0.5 | 2.10 46.7%
ET Chicago White Sox Jose Quintana 17.2 88 0.6 | 1.84 53.3%
|
20:10 Seattle Mariners Hisashi Iwakuma 26.2 87 0.3 | 1.83 53.7%
ET Houston Astros Bud Norris 19.0 124 0.1 | 2.12 46.3%
|
22:05 Texas Rangers Alexi Ogando 19.0 84 0.4 | 1.89 52.0%
ET LAA Angels Jason Vargas 14.2 132 0.1 | 2.04 48.0%
|
14:10 G1 Miami Marlins Ricky Nolasco 23.1 110 0.2 | 2.40 40.9%
ET G1 Minnesota Twins Kevin Correia 21.1 105 0.3 | 1.66 59.1%
|
20:10 G2 Miami Marlins Jose Fernandez 15.0 73 0.5 | 2.15 45.6%
ET G2 Minnesota Twins Mike Pelfrey 12.1 129 0.3 | 1.80 54.4%

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