FanGraphs After Dark Chat – 4/8/14

5:49
Paul Swydan: Hi everybody!

Jeff and I will be here at 9 pm ET to answer all of your various baseball queries. So fill up the queue and we’ll see you then!

9:02
Paul Swydan: Hey people. I have a bowl of mint choc chip ice cream and some MLB.tv fired up. Lets do this.
9:02
Jeff Zimmerman: OK, I guess.
9:02
Comment From Darth Stout
So Brandon Belt. This is some kind of something.
9:03
Jeff Zimmerman: About time they let him play.
9:03
Paul Swydan: All spring I touted a breakout from Belt, and then I didn’t end up with him in the league where I could have because I had already landed Votto. Sad face.

9:03
Comment From Guest
Jeff, your Royals still haven’t hit a home run
9:04
Paul Swydan: Yeah, JEFF.
9:04
Jeff Zimmerman: Not surprising at all.
9:04
Comment From Guest
Saw someone said NYM vs ATL was grimace vs count choculah so that HAS to be best matchup tonight
9:04
Paul Swydan: I’m not sure I understand this one, but I like it anyway.
9:05
Comment From Wesley
Would you trade Alex Cobb for Eric Hosmer to replace VMart at 1B?
9:05
Jeff Zimmerman: Might set a record for K’s, I think each team is in the top for hitter K%
9:05
Paul Swydan: Even allowing that the position player is always the better player to land, no, I don’t.
9:05
Comment From mustachioed business tycoon
Beer and baseball: a good way to relax after a calculus test, or the best?
9:05
Jeff Zimmerman: Yes, I would.
9:06
Paul Swydan: It’s in the top three.
9:06
Comment From Dopes Mariners
Hi Paul, first time here, I play in a 4 player keeper league with contracts of 4,3,2 and 1 year… Have Votto (3), Tulo(2), Longo (1)… who of Bogaerts, Baez or Abreu should I keep for the next four years???
9:06
Jeff Zimmerman: besides that whole calculus part.
9:06
Jeff Zimmerman: I wonder who Paul will pick?
9:07
Paul Swydan: It has to be Abreu or Bogaerts for me. Since you already have Votto and Tulo, I’m not sure what the right answer is, so I guess it just depends on your league settings and how scarce shortstops are in general in your league.
9:08
Paul Swydan: RE: Baez, there’s no guarantee he’s up this year, and if he doesn’t come up this year, you have to assume he stays down until June 2015, so conservatively, you could use 1.5 of those 4 years, which is a big price to pay when you don’t have to.
9:09
Comment From mustachioed business tycoon
I’ve got Nelson Cruz due for a lot of bench time on my fantasy team. 10 teamer, is he droppable? If not, who would be a good pitching trade target in a 5×5+TB+QS league? Or just a tier to shoot for? Thanks guys! Love the chats.
9:10
Paul Swydan: I think he is a third tier OF at best, and I could see him being droppable in a 10-teamer. However, I also would feel just fine having him on my bench.
9:11
Jeff Zimmerman: I would look to trade him to a team hurting in HRs and RBIs. At least try to get some value before dropping him.
9:11
Comment From Guest
Can you please explain why all four of these statements are true?
1. The Oakland A’s value platoons and attempt to use them to their advantage.
2. In his career, Daric Barton has a .365 wOBA/129 wRC+ vs. LHPs and .313/94 vs. RHP.
3. As of Opening Day, Alberto Callaspo has logged zero innings at 1B at the major league level.
4. At 1B, Oakland is planning to use Callaspo vs. LHP and Barton vs. RHP.
9:13
Paul Swydan: It’s a good question. I would guess it’s because they have parsed the splits in a way that we haven’t, but it’s certainly one worth watching.
9:13
Jeff Zimmerman: 1. Because they can and don’t have high salary/ego players on their team.
2. OK
3. He is more value able at 3B or 2B
4. I will not doubt Beane.
9:13
Comment From David
Are you getting R.B.I. Baseball?
9:14
Paul Swydan: Well that sounds like a poll!
9:14
Jeff Zimmerman: No, probably not.
9:15
Paul Swydan: For the record, I absolutely will be buying it, but need to figure out which platform I want it on.
9:15
Comment From Guest
why do you guys choose fantasy questions to post in the queue then answer them in a “i hate fantasy questions” kind of way?
9:15
Paul Swydan: Well, I don’t hate fantasy questions, so if it comes across that way, I apologize.
9:16
Jeff Zimmerman: I know I don’t answer some the best, but I am stuck with the ones Paul picks.
9:16
Comment From Gonzo
It is the 6th inning in ARI @SF and Tim Hudson has looked pretty good. 80 pitches only two runs allowed. A bit of a sleeper for Wins in roto?
9:17
Jeff Zimmerman: I never chase Wins, never. Just get good pitchers and the Wins will come.
9:17
Paul Swydan: Agreed. Having said that, I think Hudson is a bit of a sleeper in general.
9:18
Comment From dgrussel
Buck Showalter’s sabr quote of the day: “The computer tells you the heck with batting orders. Just take your best hitter and hit him first and your second-best hitter and hit him second. I’m not so sure they’re not right.”
9:18
Paul Swydan: Buck Showalter, ladies and gentlemen!
9:18
Jeff Zimmerman: but what if the second hitter can’t bunt or have bat control?
9:19
Paul Swydan: For the record though, Nick Markakis has hit either first or second in 6 of the first 7 O’s games, and the other hitters at the top of the lineup have been Lough, Hardy and Cruz, so ole Buck hasn’t exactly put this one into practice just yet.
9:19
Comment From David Bright
Jeff, what am I supposed to expect from Shelby Miller long term? I recall you saying Michael Wacha was James Shields. Is Miller still Matt Cain, as he was projected a few years ago?
9:20
Paul Swydan: I think Dave Cameron said Wacha was Shields last week, but maybe Jeff said it too?

As for Miller, I expect him to be at least on par with Matt Cain. Not that you asked me.

9:20
Jeff Zimmerman: I am not sure what to expect from Miller, Cain would be great, but pitchers can change on a dime.
9:21
Comment From Jaack
The D-backs have played the most games of anyone, yet have the least amount of wins. On a scale of 1-Astros, how bad is Arizona?
9:22
Jeff Zimmerman: I still think they are around a .500 team and that hasn’t changed in a week.
9:22
Paul Swydan: They’re not Astros-bad, but whenever you look at the starting rotation they had and say “eh, all we need is Bronson Arroyo,” you’re getting what you deserve. Sure, Corbin’s injury hurt them, but I think Sullivan and Eno’s SP research has shown that you need to prepare to have 7+ SPs ready to go each year.
9:23
Comment From Oh Cananda
Would MLB every let the Blue Jays leave Toronto, or would they want to keep them in Canada to keep their international presence?
9:23
Paul Swydan: I think that it would be very difficult to have the Blue Jays leave Canada.
9:23
Jeff Zimmerman: The problem with moving is the team needs somewhere to go.
9:24
Paul Swydan: Exactly, I don’t think they’ll find a bigger city than Toronto.
9:24
Comment From Eric
What to do about Braun? The thumb thing doesn’t seem like it’s going away and after his 3-homer performance it could be the perfect time to sell him. But should I?
9:25
Paul Swydan: Jeff wrote about this yesterday:

http://www.fangraphs.com/fa…

9:26
Jeff Zimmerman: I really like Braun coming into the season, but the injury worries me. I think get what you can.
9:26
Paul Swydan: I tend to agree with him. I think you have to wait this out. You can’t cut bait this early. Esp when he does things like he did today.
9:26
Comment From Jake
What do the R and U that I’m seeing next to the ZiPS and Steamer projections on player pages stand for? Regression and somehting else?
9:27
Paul Swydan: No, the R is for Rest of Season, and the U is for Updated Full Season forecast, which takes the games already played into account.
9:27
Jeff Zimmerman: R = rest of season U = update on player value.
9:27
Comment From Jim
Who do you have more faith in? Marlins or Brewers?
9:28
Paul Swydan: The Brewers, but that’s damning with faint praise.
9:28
Jeff Zimmerman: Brewers. easy.
9:28
Comment From Toby
Do you know if the studies from “the book” have been replicated with a larger set of data? If I recall correctly, most of their studies looked at stats from a 3-5 year period, and there would now be much more data to use for such studies.
9:29
Paul Swydan: Steve Staude replicated one for the THT ’14 Annual. I’m not sure of others. Jeff would know better than I would.
9:30
Jeff Zimmerman: Not each one in one place, but they stand up pretty good. Some individual values have changed as the game has changed (less offense).
9:30
Comment From Richard Kisineau
Looking at the Nats rotation, how many wins do you see for Jordan and Roark and do either lose there job to Giolito this season?
9:31
Jeff Zimmerman: Fister is on his way back, so one is done. Maybe 10 total, but they are Wins so who knows.
9:32
Paul Swydan: Wouldn’t speculate on the wins, but since Giolito started the season in High A and hasn’t even reached 50 IP as a professional, I don’t think he’s going to be stealing any jobs at the major league level this season.
9:32
Comment From bryan
thoughts on CC Sabathia and Jeff Weaver going forward? good for spot starts? I’m in a quality start league.
9:32
Paul Swydan: Bullish on Sabathia, bearish on Weaver, but both should be good at least for spot starts. Just make sure you don’t get too zealous with how you spot Weaver.
9:33
Jeff Zimmerman: I like Weaver for what he is, he is pretty steady. In some deeper leagues, he is valuable. Right now, i am just staying away from starting Sabathia. I don’t think he would be starting if he didn’t have the huge contract.
9:34
Comment From Ghëst
What’s been your favorite community article recently?
9:34
Paul Swydan: The one I put in the Best Of the week post from two weeks ago.

http://www.fangraphs.com/bl…

http://www.fangraphs.com/co…

9:35
Jeff Zimmerman: Truthfully, I haven’t read one for a while. I have been trying to get an article done for Paul for THT.
9:35
Paul Swydan: Yeah, stop distracting him you guys, GOSH!
9:35
Comment From Sgt. Pepper
What kind of kids eat Armour Hot Dogs?
9:36
Paul Swydan: The kind that don’t want their school principal to strap them to his chest as a means of pretending they’re a bomb vest?
9:36
Jeff Zimmerman: Kids who parents buy Armour Hot Dogs.
9:36
Comment From Richard Kisineau
Cards/Reds commentators last night claimed Pete Rose was a better lead off hitter than Ricky Henderson…thoughts???
9:36
Paul Swydan: If it was Marty Brennaman (sp), then I am in no way surprised by this statement.
9:37
Jeff Zimmerman: Just not true and I will leave it at that.
9:37
Comment From Mo
Favorite website?
9:38
Jeff Zimmerman: baseballheatmaps.com
9:38
Paul Swydan: You mean besides FanGraphs and The Hardball Times and Baseball Heat Maps?

Let’s just say favorite non-baseball sites — Pitchfork and Slashfilm.

9:38
Comment From zurzles
Should I accept J. Abreu for Rizzo?
9:39
Paul Swydan: If you’re the guy getting Abreu, I like this a lot.
9:39
Jeff Zimmerman: I really don’t go to a place because anyone I like is in my feeder, so Feedly.com
9:39
Comment From Cochise
Is De Las Rosa still worth a bench spot in deeper leagues?
9:39
Jeff Zimmerman: Abreau side.
9:39
Paul Swydan: I think he’s definitely worth a bench spot.
9:40
Jeff Zimmerman: Yes.
9:40
Comment From Mike
How many years does Albert Pujols have left? Terrible year last year, off to a slow start this year. There’s no way he makes it to the end of this contract, right?
9:41
Jeff Zimmerman: Ask me again in a month, but his career is not looking good.
9:41
Paul Swydan: If he does, it’s because the Angels are really stubborn. Jeff timed him in spring training from home to first, and it wasn’t pretty.
9:41
Comment From Rob
Some are saying Eovaldi will be the next young teacher to take the league by storm. Agree?
9:41
Paul Swydan: I don’t agree, because he’s not a teacher, and also teacher’s don’t have leagues.
9:42
Jeff Zimmerman: All yours Paul.
9:42
Paul Swydan: As for taking the league by storm, I think it’s a little early for that. I could see him breaking out, but right now I think it’s just two good starts.
9:43
Comment From mymaus
I like the game odds calculation on the site. Any chance you guys can provide us fantasy players a continually updated number for the next 2 weeks of games? I know the farther out you go the worse the accuracy but I still think it could be useful.
9:43
Paul Swydan: It’s an interesting idea and so I posted it in the hopes that the Dark Overlord sees it.
9:44
Jeff Zimmerman: OK.
9:44
Comment From Mo
Jeff, have you done research to determine what effects Edge% has on other stats? Seems really interesting to me.
9:45
Jeff Zimmerman: Bill Petti did more after I initially looked at it.

http://www.fangraphs.com/bl…

9:45
Comment From Sgt. Pepper
Tulo is apparently hurting and I own him in four leagues so I you need me I’ll be hanging from the ceiling punching a light bulb.
9:46
Paul Swydan: It’s the only thing that’ll make you happy.
9:46
Jeff Zimmerman: His injury(s) should be expect.
9:46
Comment From JV
12 team league. pitching staff of Felix-Zimmermann-Gray-Archer-Haren-Porcello-Ross-Roark-Hutchison OK?
9:47
Paul Swydan: I think it is, yes. Lot riding on Gray-Archer-Ross, and Ross is certainly off to a poor start, but I think Felix-Zimmermann will paper over a lot of blemishes.
9:47
Jeff Zimmerman: Yea, seems good. You may need help with #5 and lower.
9:48
Comment From Daniel
I am a Mariners fan and my girlfriend is an Angels fan. She doesn’t like it when I gloat after Mariner wins in April, but I point out that the Angels have won the World Series and I need to celebrate what I can. Can this work out?
9:48
Paul Swydan: It can. I believe in you guys.
9:49
Comment From Osberry
Grandal is looking like the real deal. How long before he’s starting almost every game behind the plate? I hear Rivera is great at framing and I’m wondering whether that will factor in even after Grandal is fully “recovered”.
9:49
Jeff Zimmerman: You can’t gloat over every win, it will get old quickly.
9:50
Paul Swydan: I think it’ll take a couple of months. 1) He has to prove he can handle the back-to-backs after his knee injury(s), and 2) Bud Black seems irrationally attached to Nick Hundley, even though Nick Hundley kind of sucks.
9:50
Jeff Zimmerman: I wouldn’t rush him to catch. He may not be full time catching until next season.
9:51
Comment From obpleagues
I’ve noticed that auction leagues seem to have the most value in the later picks, but do you advocate making at least one big bid in the early going?
9:51
Paul Swydan: Absolutely. The problem with waiting until the end for everyone is that you run the risk of not using all of your money, and not using all of your money is a good way to end up with a bad team.
9:52
Jeff Zimmerman: It all depends on the league, I was in a auction this past weekend where the middle tier was insane and the value was with the top players. Seemed like everyone was $15 to $20
9:53
Comment From asdfasdf
By the way, the guy who asked about why you hate fantasy questions posted the same thing in response to Jeff Sullivan’s chat today because Jeff hates fantasy questions. I don’t think he was insulting you two, maybe he confused Jeff Zimmerman and Jeff Sullivan :) so don’t be insulted!
9:53
Jeff Zimmerman: OK.
9:53
Paul Swydan: Frankly, I think any of us would be insulted to be confused with Jeff Sullivan. Have you ever SEEN that guy? He’s so good looking it makes me sick.
9:54
Comment From Rick
Brandon Belt or Melky Cabrera RoS?
9:54
Paul Swydan: I’ll say Belt.
9:54
Jeff Zimmerman: I would take Belt. He is on the right side of the aging curve.
9:55
Paul Swydan: Although I want to believe in a rebound from Melky.
9:55
Comment From Venturafan
Khris Davis or Angel Pagan ROS?
9:55
Paul Swydan: I’d prefer Pagan, but I like both.
9:55
Jeff Zimmerman: Davis.
9:56
Comment From toot toot
how worried should I be about clay buchholz? I feel like he’s never going to be the same
9:56
Paul Swydan: I’m incredibly worried about Buchholz. He seems like he’s trending toward being the next Bret Saberhagen, except without the Cy Young Awards.
9:57
Jeff Zimmerman: He is pitching like he did when he came back from his injury last season (lower velo). I would expect less from him as he figures it out.
9:57
Comment From JV
What do you see from Michael Brantley this season?
9:57
Paul Swydan: Not much. I didn’t even consider drafting him this year.
9:58
Jeff Zimmerman: More of the same, undervalue in baseball, but at the end of the season his production will be in the 2-3 WAR range.
9:58
Comment From Dougie
Thoughts on Ventura so far tonight in his debut?
9:58
Paul Swydan: Jeff?
9:59
Jeff Zimmerman: He is looking good. I am amazed on how the change has come along so quickly.
9:59
Comment From Pale Hose
Paul – Is your White Sox rebuilding article going to be available on FG+?
9:59
Paul Swydan: Yes, sorry, I will do it later tonight.
9:59
Comment From Kretin
What are your thoughts on Josh Hamilton’s early success?
10:00
Paul Swydan: Still wary.
10:00
Jeff Zimmerman: His plate approach has improved. He will need to keep it up though.
10:01
Comment From Owen
What do you think of the Yankees using a 6 man rotation for the first half of the season? Gives Tanaka time to transition to every 5. Gives Kuroda a better chance at staying effective down the stretch. Gives Pineda more time to work back from his injury. Losing a couple starts from C.C. and Nova wouldn’t be a crime either if it meant less clunkers.
10:01
Jeff Zimmerman: I have heard/seen worse ideas.
10:01
Paul Swydan: If the Yankees had six good starters, that might be a good idea. The Yankees don’t have six good starters, and any reduction in Tanaka and Kuroda’s workload probably doesn’t push them closer to a playoff berth.
10:03
Comment From Leo Mazzone
How does my boy Ervin Santana pan out this year in a Braves jersey? Worth the $14.1mil?
10:04
Jeff Zimmerman: Santana seems so sink or swim in nature. Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.
10:04
Paul Swydan: He should be worth it, assuming he can soak up the innings that they need him to.
10:04
Comment From Buzz Lawyer
who do you like more for the rest of the year, Cingrani or Lynn?
10:05
Jeff Zimmerman: Ventura done for the night. 6 K, 0BB, 6IP
10:05
Paul Swydan: I saw this one earlier, and I couldn’t decide. I still am having trouble deciding. If you’re forcing me, I’ll say Lynn, just because he has the track record. But I really like both.
10:05
Jeff Zimmerman: Cingrani, but the decision is close.
10:05
Comment From Josh C
Out of all the players with insanely good or bad stats at this point, which players do you think will continue to do better/worse than usual?
10:06
Jeff Zimmerman: I think Cabrera will be better than last season. I like the improvement from Skaggs.
10:06
Paul Swydan: Well, we’ve already talked about Belt. And I wrote about Pagan on Friday, so I guess they are out.
10:07
Paul Swydan: I will say Cashner.
10:07
Comment From Bob
What’s your take on the crazy report out of Toronto over the weekend that five players volunteered to defer their salary so that management would have enough money to sign Santana? And why would the Jays senior management confirm a report that makes them look so bad when they never confirm anything?
10:08
Jeff Zimmerman: Not sure it is that crazy, but the players want to win.
10:09
Paul Swydan: I think it was ludicrous, and the fact that the Jays couldn’t pony up for Santana is embarrassing.

I think that they could try and spin it as “look at us, we’re a team,” but I think that it probably didn’t play that way.

10:10
Paul Swydan: I also think that is going to do it for us tonight, folks. Thanks for hanging out tonight. You guys are the best!
10:10
Jeff Zimmerman: See everyone 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.


4 Responses to “FanGraphs After Dark Chat – 4/8/14”

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  1. A real guy whos pissed off says:

    Stop answering the questions where these stupid people pretend theyre a player and ask some dumb question . Such as

    FROM:George Springer- Why am i at AAA ? What day will i come up? How many home runs will i hit?

    Thats all. I dont have a qustion

    Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Jonathan Singleton says:

      George, stop being so angry! You’ll be called up anytime now.

      +5 Vote -1 Vote +1

    • PP Jutz says:

      1) There aren’t any of those types of questions in the chat above, so perhaps post this where it is relevant.

      2) If you’re so pissed off maybe demand your money back….oh wait

      Vote -1 Vote +1

  2. dscott says:

    Do you guys start Hin Jin Ryu tomorrow at home vs the Tigers without a DH?

    Vote -1 Vote +1

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