FanGraphs After Dark Chat – 1/28/14

5:42
Paul Swydan: Hi everybody!

My son wants me to push X. So I did.

Anyhooo, join Jeff Z and me tonight at 9 pm ET. We can talk all about the new HardballTimes.com, which I know you’re all totally going to visit every single day, right? Cool. Cool cool cool.

See you soon!

9:00
Paul Swydan: Ok, guys, let’s do this. I forgot to mention this earlier, but Jeff will be late. He’s doing an expert mock draft that Howard Bender organized.
9:00
Paul Swydan: Yes, a mock draft in January.
9:01
Comment From Eric
In ottoneu, what happens to a team if they don’t make cuts by the keeper deadline and they have exceeded their budget and/or roster limit?
9:01
Paul Swydan: Oh, that’s a good question. Has anyone ever done this? One of the teams in my league forgot to cut people last year, but he wasn’t over the cap.
9:01
Comment From Jaack
AJ Burnett is a fantastic troll.

9:02
Paul Swydan: I never bought that he was retiring. The question now is whether or not he’s serious about testing the market, or if he’s just trying to drive up the price on the Pirates.
9:02
Comment From Steven
If there was no baseball what would be your favorite sport?
9:02
Paul Swydan: Basketball. My email account in college ended in “33” for the basketball Jesus.
9:02
Comment From Jon
I get why WAR is more useful/valuable than wins above average, but why doesn’t something like WAA even exist (at least on FanGraphs)?
9:03
Paul Swydan: For me, I think at a certain point you can be oversaturated with stats. You’d essentially still have the same order of players, just with different numbers. I’m not sure how instructive that is. Doesn’t hurt I suppose, but I doubt I’d use it.
9:04
Comment From Compton
Is it Paul Swydan as in Swai-dan or Paul Swydan as in Swee-den as in Jodie Sweetin?
9:04
Paul Swydan: Closer to the first thing you said.
9:04
Comment From SId
Now for the future, who wins? Cobb and M. Carpenter for Crick, Stroman, Erik Johnson and Porcello.
9:05
Paul Swydan: This person posted this in two parts, sort of. He originally said “mortgaging future for now.”
9:05
Paul Swydan: The side with the hitter, which is the Carpenter side. But this side isn’t such a slam dunk that I want to cut on two big prospects plus Porcello.
9:06
Comment From York
What do you expect out of Gausman in 2014/2015? What level of pitcher would you want back in a Dynasty league(no salary, keep forever) for him?
9:06
Paul Swydan: I would want a top pitcher back in a dynasty league. Gausman might not be an All-Star by the end of 2015, but he certainly has that potential, so I would want someone similar back.
9:06
Comment From Stan
What are your thoughs on Ian Kinsler for 2014…decline or rebound?
9:07
Paul Swydan: I’m going to say neither. He is who he was last year for a couple of years before beginning to decline.
9:07
Comment From N. Ron Field
Hey guys, thanks for chatting! I’m looking for your opinions on two young AL pitchers namely Kluber and Ventura. Do you see success for either of them this year?
9:08
Paul Swydan: I mildly like Kluber. Not in the first 10 rounds, but after that I’d pop him in a re-draft league.

I love Ventura, especially in a keeper league. Success for him comes down to whether or not he sticks in the rotation from the jump. We’ll have to see.

9:08
Comment From Vic
RDLR? Will he ever become a full time starter this season?
9:09
Paul Swydan: When Johnny Farrell spoke at Saber Seminar last August, he said that the team viewed Rubby as more of a bullpen piece and Workman as more of a starter. And Workman is, at best, the #7 starter. So, not sure it’s going to work out in the rotation for Rubby.
9:09
Comment From Vic
Could you rank these for most 5 x 5 total value from 2014-2018? Trying to target a keeper pick. Buxton, Kris Bryant, Lawrie, Austin Jackson, Altuve, Desmond Jennings, Starlin, Billy Butler.
9:10
Paul Swydan: Buxton, AJax, Bryant ….. Starlin, Butler, Lawrie, Jennings, Altuve
9:10
Comment From Vic
Who is someone to target around pick 20?
9:11
Paul Swydan: Seems like Matt Holliday territory.
9:11
Comment From YoYo man
Hey Paul, Are you optimistic about Yan Gomes this year? Is a .770ish ops a reasonable expectation?
9:11
Paul Swydan: I don’t think he’s going to hit as well as last year, so yeah, .770 sounds more like it. Maybe .750.
9:12
Comment From Matt Adams
Do I get to play 1B this year, or will I be Craiged out?
9:12
Paul Swydan: I think you’ll definitely get as many PAs as you can handle.
9:12
Comment From Jake
Why is everyone always asking about expansion, or acting like it’s a goal of the league?
9:13
Paul Swydan: Probably because the game is swimming in money, and generally one follows the other?
9:13
Comment From Baseballjunkie
Who would you rather have for a whole career, Giolito or Gray?
9:14
Paul Swydan: Well, Gray still has his original elbow, and Giolito doesn’t, so Gray.
9:14
Comment From Worm Turner
Like the new look over at THT, not as easy to get at all the articles, but if its one a day that shouldn’t be a problem! Had a question about the A’s rotation, Who do you expect to pull ahead of the pack from the 2nd tier of Griffen/ Parker/ Milone/ and Straily? Each of their respective 13′ seasons could all be different years of the same pitcher practically. Kind of amazing how even the back end is, can’t think of many other staffs like it.
9:15
Paul Swydan: Yeah, the flow of articles was done in mind with the expected output. Glad you like the new look. Feel free to pepper us with feedback. We’re not under the assumption that it’s perfect.
9:16
Paul Swydan: As for your question, I still expect Parker to take a step forward. And I like Straily. And I think I underrate Griffin. Basically, I don’t like Milone as much.
9:16
Comment From zack
Regarding draft pick compensation for free agents are teams overvaluing draft picks in the 20’s and are they overestimating their ability to get talent at those spots?
9:16
Comment From Baseballjunkie
Who do you see as the top prospect in 2015? My vote is for Correa… only 19 but already in the top 10 on most lists so far.
9:17
Paul Swydan: Sorry, fat fingers. Zack, I think so, but it’s not really that surprising. It’s hard to backburner a whole department like that.
9:18
Paul Swydan: Junkie… Correa could definitely be the guy. I could also see Gray and Baez. Maybe Bryant as well.
9:18
Comment From Dark Horse
12TM H2H keep 10, 5 new contracts: 1-4YR, 1-3YR, 3-2YR. How to spend them on J. Fernandez, J. Kipnis, J. Ellsbury, J. Teheran, T. Rosenthal, P. Corbin? For 5th contract keeper, keep B. Lawrie 3YR or F. Rodney 2YR? Thanks
9:19
Paul Swydan: Lawrie over Rodney because Rodney is worthless.

As for rest. Four year on Kipnis. Three year on Fernandez. Two years for Ellsbury, Rosenthal and …. Teheran, who gets points for not having a crazy person as his manager.

9:19
Comment From Prich
Ackley for Maybin… two ‘underachievers’, playing positions of excess for the respective teams, might do both good for a change of scenery… is there a match there for the Padres and Ms?
9:20
Paul Swydan: No. Padres have Gyorko. They have no use for Ackley.
9:20
Paul Swydan: And Maybin isn’t an underachiever so much as hurt frequently. And adding him to an outfield with Franklin Gutierrez strikes me as cruel and unusal punishment for M’s fans.
9:20
Comment From Pat Andriola
Can we get Obama to guest post at THT about the ChiSox getting Adam Eaton? Would totally be willing to ghost write it.
9:21
Paul Swydan: Perhaps something about how Jose Abreu to the Sox is an olive branch to end the trade embargo with Cuba?
9:21
Comment From Ryan
I think it’s being underplayed a bit, but the strike throwing ability of Uehara, Tazawa, Mujica and Badenhop should be pretty incredible to see this season.
9:22
Paul Swydan: I do not think this has been underplayed whatsoever. But yes, it could be pretty sweet.
9:22
Comment From Ryan
Would you rather the Red Sox sign Yoon or Madson if they are only bringing in 1 more pitcher?
9:22
Paul Swydan: Well, I don’t know a lot about Yoon. But being that he’s not Madson, I’ll take him. Though I don’t think the Sox need to sign another reliever.
9:22
Comment From Jay
T. Wood vs D. Gee for 2014?
9:22
Paul Swydan: Same ol’ Gee
9:23
Comment From Jay
Who wins a J. Zimmerman for F. Freeman trade?
9:23
Paul Swydan: The team that gets Freeman.
9:23
Comment From Sgt. Pepper
I don’t know anything about basketball but how does Lebron James compare to Michael Jordan
9:23
Paul Swydan: No one compares to Michael Jordan.
9:23
Comment From Sgt. Pepper
Jays are apparently interested in Morales. Worth it given it won’t cost them a first rounder?
9:24
Paul Swydan: Seems like an odd fit in that Lind has the exact same skill set as Morales, and they’d still have to give up A draft pick to get Morales.
9:24
Comment From Danny
Is it possible that the Mariners’ outfield– Saunders, Ackley, Gutierrez, Almonte, Hart– performs at league-average?
9:24
Paul Swydan: It is certainly possible. I wouldn’t hold my breath though.
9:24
Comment From Michael
Padres or D-Backs for 2nd place in the West?
9:24
Paul Swydan: Padres. Their manager is not a crazy person.
9:24
Comment From The other Kyle
HR total for Khris Davis?
9:25
Paul Swydan: 23 ??
9:25
Comment From Annoyed Umpire
How often do you think the new play call challenges will occur, one or two a day, or one or two a week, baseball is tradition after all.
9:25
Paul Swydan: 1-2 a week seems more right. We have a cool piece on this coming from Jesse Wolfersberger later in the month at THT. Look for that!
9:25
Comment From Pat
How big of a smile does Smyly put on an fantasy owner’s face this season?
9:26
Paul Swydan: I see what you did there.

He was very good in relief last year. Let’s see how it translates. #3 upside, but I wouldn’t draft him as a #3, that’s for sure.

9:26
Comment From Jerry Coleman
Percentage chance of Buxton/Taveras completely flopping in the Majors?
9:27
Paul Swydan: I mean, there’s always a chance. Let’s say under <20%. You have to be pretty bad to completely flop. Just ask Delmon Young.
9:27
Comment From Bob
Will Danny Duffy be a KC starter? Or Wade Davis?
9:28
Paul Swydan: Honestly, if the last two seasons weren’t proof enough that Davis can’t be a starter for DMGM, then he really should be fired. In any case, Duffy would be my pick.
9:28
Comment From john
Khris Davis. Some projections are pretty high on him. What say the panel?
9:29
Paul Swydan: I like him a lot. Question whether or not he’ll really play every day.
9:29
Comment From YOLO Swag Master
Paul Swydan is secretly Bill Simmons.
9:29
Paul Swydan: No, but I did get him to sign both of his books for me.
9:30
Comment From Michael
Buxton baby
9:30
Paul Swydan: Good question, Michael.
9:30
Comment From Guest
Thoughts on Brett Anderson?
9:30
Paul Swydan: 175.1, 112.1, 83.1, 35.0, 44.2. Sensing a pattern?
9:31
Comment From Guest
Do you agree with the idea that Cameron has been putting forward that a contract handed out by the Yankee’s should sort of be viewed as being about 40% as big given the Yankee’s financial resources relative to a normal team?
9:31
Paul Swydan: Sounds about right. And honestly, I don’t think the Yankees should feel bad about that.
9:32
Comment From Fanta
Going into 14′, Would you prefer a $44 Votto, or a $40 Fielder?
9:32
Paul Swydan: Votto.
9:32
Comment From David
Sleeper spot for AJ Burnett: DC? Contender, close to home, money to spend. Not a “need” for them, but Mike Rizzo always talks about strengthening a strength. Put him at the back of that rotation, move Detwiler to the bullpen and wow that staff. Thoughts?
9:33
Paul Swydan: I could see it. And it’s still in the NL, which probably helps a little too. But the Nats do have better SP depth this year than last, so the situation is not as dire.
9:33
Comment From Matt
Give me a prediction for wRC+ for: Jackie Bradley, Xander Bogaerts and Will Middlebrooks.
9:33
Paul Swydan: 103, 10000000000000000000000000000000000000, 88.
9:33
Paul Swydan: Real guess for Xander – 117.
9:34
Comment From Gila Monster
Why hasn’t Chris Capuano been signed? He is awesome pitch. Dat SwgStr%
9:34
Paul Swydan: I think he’s viewed as fragile. Some team is going to get a steal with him though.
9:34
Comment From Guest
Zips has the Cubs about Garza+Ellsbury short of a post season.
9:35
Paul Swydan: It’s probably not that simple, but if you’re saying that the Cubs should have done more this offseason, that is a statement that I can definitely get behind.
9:35
Comment From Joe
Which team ends up with Stephen Drew?
9:35
Paul Swydan: Mystery.
9:36
Comment From Guest
if he can stay healthy, do the Rockies give Morneau enough ABs to be fantasy relevant?
9:36
Paul Swydan: I don’t think so, no. He can’t get extra-base hits against lefties. And I can’t imagine they signed him to platoon him.
9:36
Comment From Sgt. Pepper
Wolfersberger is an epic name
9:36
Paul Swydan: It really is.
9:37
Comment From Bip
I’m in Chicago this week, as opposed to California, and holy crap, the after dark chat really is after dark!
9:37
Paul Swydan: Hope you brought blankets with you.
9:37
Comment From Stephen Drews Assistant
C’mon guys, I need to find an apartment soon, really, NYC or Boston?
9:37
Paul Swydan: I’d rather have the draft pick than you, Stephen, no offense.
9:37
Comment From Bip
Will Tanaka play in the 2014 All Star Game?
9:37
Paul Swydan: Perhaps as an injury replacement? Where IS the game this year, anyway? Anaheim?
9:37
Comment From Pat
What does a 2014 Xander Bogaerts finishing line look like?
9:38
Comment From JJ
better measure of power, ISO with or without contact (strikeouts) included
9:40
Paul Swydan: Hmmm…I’ve already definitively answered this question four times, and I keep flip flopping. Got me. Can see it both ways.
9:40
Comment From Danny
Obama wants to add more jobs. 30-man rosters? After After Dark chats?
9:40
Paul Swydan: Who would even host the After After Dark Chat? Wiers? Don’t nobody want that.
9:41
Comment From YOLO Swag Master
I think I asked Eno this last week: who in MLB has the most swag?
9:41
Paul Swydan: Brandon Phillips?
9:41
Comment From Michael
Who plays more games: Grady Sizemore or Oscar Tavares?
9:41
Paul Swydan: Oscar
9:41
Comment From David
Re: Nats depth. Safe to say you’re buying into Tanner Roark and Taylor Jordan as decent enough backend starters, if needed?
9:42
Paul Swydan: The question isn’t whether or not I buy them, it’s whether or not they are so much worse than Burnett that you need to go out and spend that money for someone who you wouldn’t NEED for playoff starts.
9:43
Paul Swydan: Of course, if those bone chips removed from Strasburg’s elbow portend something worse, well then, let’s talk.
9:43
Comment From Gila Monster
More directly to Pual, but what would you guess for a Lester extension? I imagine it would be somewhere between Garza’s 4Y/$50M and Sanchez’s 5Y/$88M or Wainwright’s 5Y/$97M. He could look you in the eye and ask more for than Wainwright.
9:44
Paul Swydan: Between Garza and Sanchez. He’s already stated that he is willing to take a big discount. Something about other pitchers contracts being ridiculous this offseason. Not the sharpest knife in the drawer, that Mr. Lester.
9:44
Comment From Wormtown
What sabermetric stat cat do you find yourself using the most for batsmen? Pitchers?
9:44
Paul Swydan: I’m most partial to wRC+ and FIP-.
9:44
Comment From Prich
Do you have a rooting interest Sunday, or are you just looking forward to too much eating drinking and commercials?
9:45
Paul Swydan: I am definitely rooting for the Seahawks.
9:45
Comment From Gila Monster
Why do people worry about Xander sticking at SS? He is listed at 6’3″ 185. Tulowitski is 6’3″ 215…..Meaning he is Tulowitski 2.0….right?
9:46
Paul Swydan: Because the media loves Stephen Drew, and they’ll use that excuse until they’re convinced that Bogaerts is better. So, like by the end of 2015 we can stop hearing about it.
9:46
Comment From Bip
The Angels were left off the MLB.com and b-pro top 100/101 prospects lists. Do they at least have a little depth? Or is their system historically bad? How can a team recover from something like that?
9:47
Paul Swydan: Unfortunately, the new restrictions on the draft and int’l bonus pool have made it much, much more difficult to improve your farm system in short order unless you tear things down like Houston did.
9:47
Paul Swydan: Basically, you have to knock every draft pick out of the ballpark.
9:47
Comment From Bip
Lester could easily get more than Wainwright. Wainwright should have gotten more than Wainwright. In this market? Chyeah.
9:48
Paul Swydan: He could, and perhaps should. But he’s currently negotiating against himself, and that usually doesn’t lead to contract optimization.
9:48
Comment From Johnson
Heyman says the Red Sox really want XB at 3B… that is just Boras talking, right?
9:49
Paul Swydan: Who knows. I don’t pay any attention to Heyman. Or to most beat writers, for that matter.
9:49
Comment From Guest
Red Sox resign drew, the depth he brings the inf provides more value to them than anyone else. They are a team going with a very young left side. His value to them could be the difference between a good season and a bad season.
9:49
Paul Swydan: You’re assuming that being older makes you more valuable, which, no that is incorrect. Give Middlebrooks three months. If he sucks, you cut bait forever and bring Cecchini up.
9:50
Comment From Bip
Fill in the blank with number 0-30: Mike Trout is more valuable than the entire farm system of ___ teams.
9:50
Paul Swydan: Zero. He’s not that good.
9:50
Comment From Omar Little
Would you be interested in dumping Dempster, signing Drew and trading Middlebrooks for prospects?
9:50
Paul Swydan: I’d be interested in at least one of those things.
9:50
Comment From Guest
can Wilmer Flores hack it at 2B?
9:51
Paul Swydan: I’d certainly like to find out. I’m guessing no, but let’s see.
9:51
Comment From Me
Josh Donaldson, 2013 his best year, or the real deal?
9:51
Paul Swydan: Both?
9:52
Paul Swydan: Here’s a link to Jeff’s draft, if you guys are curious.

http://www.rtsports.com/baseball/draft-board.php?LID=506246&UID=fantasybaseball

9:52
Paul Swydan: I know, I know, it hurt my eyes too.
9:52
Comment From Wallace
What is Dan Duquette doing?
9:52
Paul Swydan: Cashing checks.
9:52
Comment From Shawn Thornton
Do you like the Bruins?
9:52
Paul Swydan: Gave up on the NHL after the last strike. If they ban fighting, then we’ll talk. If I want to watch fighting, I’ll get a UFC pay-per-view.
9:53
Paul Swydan: Right now though, it’s a function of time. I love the Celtics, but I’ve only watched 2-3 games this year wire-to-wire.
9:53
Comment From Timmy
I can’t take any fantasy draft seriously that isn’t auction. Does that make me a bad person?
9:53
Paul Swydan: No, just hard to please. And that’s OK, Timmy. You keep fighting the good fight.
9:53
Comment From Guest
Which beat writers do you pay attention to?
9:54
Paul Swydan: Alex Speier
Tim Britton
Derrick Goold
Thomas Harding
Troy Tenck
Nick Piecoro
Ken Rosenthal
9:55
Paul Swydan: I guess it depends on whether you consider Jerry Crasnick a beat reporter or not, but him if you do.
9:55
Comment From Guest
I think of Drew as a hedge bet. Because he is older does not make him more valuable. You just know what you get with him. I like Cecchini a lot as well. Drew is just a very good insurance policy.
9:56
Paul Swydan: Drew has been worth 3.0 WAR in 2 of 7 major league seasons. I don’t think it’s fair to say you know what you’re getting with him.
9:56
Paul Swydan: Other than that you’re not getting an All-Star.
9:56
Comment From TC
In your opinion, who presents the best value of the remaining free agents?
9:58
Paul Swydan: That’s the list. Woof. Burnett and Ubaldo and Capuano. Darkhorse – Talking Berkman out of retirement.
9:58
Comment From Guest
I get all my Drew information from Felger and Mazz.
9:58
Paul Swydan: That’s unfortunate.
9:58
Comment From Rickey
Best bet for 2014…Verlander or Price
9:58
Paul Swydan: Verlander.
9:59
Comment From YOLO Swag Master
Which GM has the most swag? Jon Daniels? AA? Cashman?
9:59
Paul Swydan: I feel like if Brian Cashman hosted his own talk show, I’d watch it.
10:00
Comment From Guest
Do you thin the mookie betts hype is a little ridiculous right now?
10:00
Paul Swydan: Come on. Like 4 players have signed this month. Half the country has sub-zero temperatures. We need to root for a guy named Mookie. Don’t deny us that.
10:01
Paul Swydan: (Yes, it probably is)
10:01
Comment From Metsox
Which three would you keep in an obp/slg/qs 5×5…..Scherzer, Segura, Freeman, Carpenter, Bautista, Werth, Marte
10:01
Paul Swydan: Scherzer, Bautista, Carpenter/Marte
10:01
Comment From sam
wouldn’t pitch-framing numbers affect pitcher WAR as well as catcher WAR?
10:02
Paul Swydan: Bah, that wasn;t the question I meant to post.

The samples are going to be smaller per pitcher, so the effect would likely be muddled/muted. But it COULD.

10:02
Comment From Wormtown
Spencer Silva just took Alex Wood in the 20th. Your thoughts on Wood?
10:03
Paul Swydan: I like Wood’s talent. But I’m skeptical of his ability to pitch 200 innings in a single season. Or even, say, 180. So we’ll see. 20th round is about right for him. Earlier if you’re feeling risky.
10:04
Paul Swydan: Alright guys, that is going to do it for me tonight. Thanks for hanging out with me tonight, as always. You guys are the best. Don’t forget to visit the new THT every day! And I’ll see you back here next week.



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Paul Swydan is the managing editor of The Hardball Times, a writer and editor for FanGraphs and a writer for the Boston Globe. Follow him on Twitter @Swydan.


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