FanGraphs Draft Chat

Want to watch the 2010 MLB draft with a collection of smart people? Join us at 7 pm for a draft chat featuring our in house prospect guys Bryan Smith, Marc Hulet, and Erik Manning, as well as special guests Will Kimmey (in studio college baseball analyst for ESPN, formerly of Baseball America) and Jeff Sackmann (of collegesplits.com).




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Dave is a co-founder of USSMariner.com and contributes to the Wall Street Journal.


2 Responses to “FanGraphs Draft Chat”

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  1. kbertling353 says:

    You guys should publish some of the audience’s comments…

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  2. Question on Gary Brown #24 pick by Giants:

    Sackmann noted +3, +1, +1 for defense for Brown. Is that the rate over N number of games (like UZR/150) or overall for games played (like UZR)? If the former the comment makes more sense, but if the latter, I would note something I was surprised by in Fullerton’s profile of Brown: he didn’t play much in the OF while with Fullerton. In fact, he played more games at 3B (36) than the OF (25) in 2010. And in prior years, it was even more lopsided, I assume, given the comment I read elsewhere that he didn’t really play the OF until 2010, after their regular OF left the team.

    So, if I pro-rate that +3 across 61 games instead of 25, that’s about +7 this season for someone who, according to what I read at MLB Bonus Baby, didn’t play much OF in prior years as he was a middle infielder in high school and started mostly at 2B and 3B during his first two years. And he missed 12 games this season due to a broken finger, so that should push to +8 or 9 or so. Which means that he has been great on defense despite never really playing out there much previously, as he has mainly played infield positions previously in high school and college.

    Also, I have no context for what is good for power in college or not, as I don’t follow college ball. His ISO in 2010 is .257, which normally is good power, but I guess is bad in college since everyone says so. Is it scouting that says he has no power? I see his body is not big, is that all there is, or is there more statistical analysis that I’m not aware of?

    Lastly, I happen to agree with the Goldstein statement that no walks does not automatically equal a bad hitter, I believe it depends on the context, that context being a .438 BA.

    That is part of what I hate about sabermetrics (and I consider myself a saber), the basic sound-bites that everyone repeats but don’t understand fully themselves. I think the pendulum has swung too far the other way. Hits are way more valuable than a walk and if a guy can hit enough to make up for his lack of walks, that is OK in my book. Has anyone ever studied where the inflection point is?

    I would imagine it would just be using calculus on the wOBA formula to determine the differentials or something like that (been 30 years since I did that sort of calcs…) and solving the equation in some way.

    And Brown would be a good case study without analyzing the equation. Sure, his walk rate is low in 2010 but he hit .438 with an OBP of .485 (+47). In 2009, he “only” hit .340 but his OBP was .402 (+62) and in 2008, he only hit .292 but OBP was .374 (+82). His walk rate was a much more solid 8.5% in 2008 (though not great, granted). So clearly, he has adjusted the way he has swung the bat depending on how well he hit the ball, swinging the bat more when he could hit better. The question is did he make the correct tradeoff? I am not familiar with how wOBA works, but I assume that could be used to compare?

    Thanks for any answers you can provide.

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