Jeff Sullivan FanGraphs Chat — 3/18/14

9:05
Jeff Sullivan: Let’s live sports chat

9:05
Jeff Sullivan: Coming to you fresh from not Arizona anymore

9:06
Comment From Anthony Rendon
It seems like every other commentator and fantasy expert is bullish on me. Why? What’s my downside?

9:06
Jeff Sullivan: People are obsessed with young players and you are a talented young player

9:06
Comment From Guest
Thoughts on Taylor Jordan winning 5th starter spot and Ross Detwiler to the bullpen?

9:07
Jeff Sullivan: Jordan is probably a little better, Detwiler has big-league relief experience, and these decisions are reversible if subsequent performance demands it

9:07
Jeff Sullivan: What this really means is that Jordan will get the first opportunity, but a few bad starts in a row means it’s back to Detwiler. Or someone else could suck or get hurt

9:08
Comment From Brad Miller
As of the first regular season game for the Mariners, am I leading off or batting 9th?

9:08
Jeff Sullivan: I’m thinking leadoff

9:09
Comment From Green Beer Puke Remorse
better for Detroit: Drew or Rollins? Assuming the Phils would just be happy to unload Jimmy

9:10
Jeff Sullivan: Drew and Rollins project very similarly, and Drew comes at a draft-pick cost, so I’d lean toward Rollins provided the Phillies didn’t charge very much

9:10
Jeff Sullivan: Rollins would probably end up costing money for 2015, but, the same probably goes for Drew. I’m not convinced the Tigers need to go in either direction

9:11
Comment From Zachary
I’ve heard a Mt. Rainier eruption could potentially cause huge devastation because of its proximity to so many people. Was I fed a fear-mongering sensationalist statement, or is there genuine concern?

9:12
Jeff Sullivan: A significant eruption could wipe a number of smaller communities off the map. An all-time eruption could reach as far as the lower borders of Seattle. It’s a dangerous volcano, although there’s nothing going on at the moment and there’s no indication of a massive blast in the imminent future

9:12
Comment From Eminor3rd
It’s PIZZA TIME, Jeff! PIZZA TIME!

9:12
Jeff Sullivan: It will be at lunch!

9:12
Comment From CMR
Did you see the close-up drone video of a volcano erupting? Pretty cool!

9:13
Jeff Sullivan: That should do it for volcanoes today

9:13
Comment From Harry
Next MLB player to be traded?

9:13
Jeff Sullivan: Always going to pick Nick Franklin until it finally happens

9:13
Jeff Sullivan: He would at least be the next MLB player of significance to be traded

9:15
Comment From Pennsy
Are Detwiler’s numbers the second and third time through the order so bad that the Nats really do get more value from him out of the bullpen?

9:15
Jeff Sullivan: Not convinced it’s about Detwiler in the bullpen — I think it’s just about the Nationals liking Jordan in the rotation more, for the time being

9:15
Jeff Sullivan: If Jordan doesn’t learn how to punch out a lefty, then we could see a switch before too long

9:17
Comment From Jazzy Jim
What are the Red Sox going to do in CF?

9:17
Jeff Sullivan: Bradley, with Sizemore chipping in heavily from all around the outfield

9:17
Comment From Pat Davidson
Hey Jeff. Thanks for doing the chat. When do you expect Matt Davidson to play his first regular season game for the White Sox?

9:18
Jeff Sullivan: early May

9:18
Comment From Charlie
How was Cubs Park?

9:19
Jeff Sullivan: Beautiful. Elements of Wrigley South, so I don’t know why they didn’t put ivy on the walls. Parking situation was a nightmare but that’s just what Arizona is — a big hot shitty parking lot. I have a biased opinion because we had our own FanGraphs area on a deck in the shade. At one point between innings the scoreboard aired a video with Len Kasper explaining the concept of replacement value

9:20
Comment From Kris
Did you see a team bought a supercomputer (http://www.economist.com/blogs/babbage/2014/03/supercomputers)? Usually used for big data processing (PayPal has one). They want to remain anonymous. Who do you think it is and what do you think they could use it for?

9:22
Jeff Sullivan: Obviously I have no idea who it is — could be literally any of the teams — but this sort of processor could come in handy a year from now when the MLBAM system might be generating unheard of amounts of player and game information

9:23
Jeff Sullivan: “Instead, a team can use a supercomputer to process data in time to affect decisions during play, explains Mr Ungaro.”

9:23
Jeff Sullivan: Maybe the supercomputer will be replacing some team’s manager in the dugout!

9:23
Jeff Sullivan: Probably less likely to be accused of player bias.

9:25
Comment From Ryan
How do you feel about Drew Hutchinson? Apparently he is up to 95 mph and fully recovered from TJ? Inning limit?

9:27
Jeff Sullivan: I like him enough, if he’s healthy and 100% — he’s fine toward the back of a rotation and he’s demonstrated that he’s able to pitch against both lefties and righties. I think he’s a big reason why the Jays didn’t end up landing a big-time starter. At the start of the offseason, they had more of a need than it looks like they do now, just because of development from internal candidates

9:27
Comment From GSon
Who wants Aaron Harang as their fifth starter?. and what can the Indians hope to get in return?. Is a Competitive Balance Lottery Pick too much?

9:27
Jeff Sullivan: Literally anything would be too much

9:28
Comment From RetireNutting
What’s a Jose Tabata + Vin Mazzarro package net, if anything?

9:29
Jeff Sullivan: Salary relief

9:29
Comment From Andrew
What would the ideal yet reasonable return for Nick Franklin look like for Seattle?

9:29
Jeff Sullivan: Second-tier big-league starter or second-tier big-league outfielder. Young. Sort of a SP or OF Nick Franklin equivalent

9:30
Comment From Glenn
Jeff, can you give me your take on Mr.Heyward’s “potential” bounce back for this season.Thx.

9:30
Jeff Sullivan: 2012: 121 wRC+
2013: 120 wRC+

9:31
Jeff Sullivan: I like that he trimmed his strikeouts. There’s an MVP somewhere in there, and while I don’t think we’re going to see that in 2014, I think he’s a pretty good bet to boost that wRC+ another ten points or so

9:31
Comment From Charlie
Are the A’s screwed?

9:31
Jeff Sullivan: Not yet, not if Kazmir and Griffin are all right. Griffin’s already slated to begin the year on the DL but if he’s only out, say, a month, they have the depth to cover

9:31
Comment From Chris
Are you bullish on Roenis Elias?

9:32
Jeff Sullivan: Had literally never heard of him before a few weeks ago. Haven’t seen him. I figure he tops out as a No. 4/5 and he doesn’t get me excited. If he does make the rotation, which he won’t, he’d be back in the minors within a few starts when the other guys are healthy

9:32
Comment From Conrad
It sure seems like hanging on to Nick Franklin makes more sense for the Ms as the days go by….

9:32
Jeff Sullivan: That would make very little sense! He’ll get moved. Teams just need to get their scouting finished first

9:33
Comment From GSon
Do the nats use Detweiller as trade bait?

9:33
Jeff Sullivan: They already have

9:34
Comment From _David_
Say there was one surgeon who did all the elbow surgeries, and everyone kept going to him because he had the experience…what if he were actually terrible and what we know about TJ recovery rate was solely based on his ineptitude?

9:35
Jeff Sullivan: Then that would be interesting since the data shows that TJ recovery rate is really remarkably high!

9:35
Jeff Sullivan: But right now, obviously, it looks like there’s an outbreak of contagious elbow disease

9:35
Comment From Pennsy
How important is the ballpark experience at a baseball game versus the venue experience at pretty much anything else? Isn’t it kind of particular to the sport?

9:36
Jeff Sullivan: It’s probably more important in baseball, since baseball has so much consistent downtime. Like, between every pitch, you have 20-30 seconds to look around and feel where you are

9:37
Jeff Sullivan: Other performances will have stretches of downtime — intermissions — but that’s just when you go to the bathroom or buy another beer. If you’re at, say, a show, then the whole time outside of the intermission you’re just staring at the stage

9:38
Comment From bob
Beachy is getting a second opinion after seeing Dr. Andrews. I’m optimistic.

9:38
Jeff Sullivan: This is the dumbest spring ever

9:38
Comment From Slack Schpeinke
how soon do you see Polanco in Pitts OF ?

9:38
Jeff Sullivan: mid-May – mid-June. He’s super close but the Pirates have to think about future money

9:39
Comment From Kris
Are service time concerns getting overblown now? Archie bradley might not start the year with the team and sounds like the Braves are gonna roll with Freddy Garcia over JR Graham?

9:39
Jeff Sullivan: Graham and Bradley have a combined 38 starts in Double-A and zero starts in Triple-A

9:41
Jeff Sullivan: If the Diamondbacks wait to start Bradley for a few weeks, that’ll mean just a small handful of starts. So that would cost them pretty much nothing, even if you assume Bradley is superior to the guy who’ll make the roster out of the gate. There’s just little to be gained by promoting a young player right away, and a whole lot to be gained by delaying said promotion for a short while

9:41
Jeff Sullivan: We’re talking about a whole extra year of team control, versus 2-3 starts

9:41
Comment From DB
I am a worrier. Will Jose Abreu’s time be affected by Dunn and Konerko or are they non-issues? Also, are the sore ankles a big deal?

9:41
Jeff Sullivan: Abreu is the priority. The White Sox aren’t stupid

9:41
Comment From Julian
Is it really just coincidence all of these pitchers are getting hurt around the same time or does something really need to change in the way teams manage pitcher’s innings, their routines, etc?

9:41
Jeff Sullivan: This is a freak spring

9:42
Jeff Sullivan: But every team is also trying to learn more and more about keeping pitchers healthy. That’s always been an issue

9:42
Comment From Daniel
Will Matt Kemp return to being a star for the Dodgers?

9:42
Jeff Sullivan: I can see him as a 3-4 win player

9:43
Comment From Guest
How much of the pitch framing numbers for the guys that BP reported in the +2/+3 win-from-framing range do you think is real and how much is from some kind of pfx errors?

9:43
Jeff Sullivan: I don’t think we’re observing pfx errors but the more I talk to people the more I’m skeptical of the full reported range of values. Everyone agrees that framing is a real skill but not many people believe there can be differences of 40-60 runs between the endpoints

9:43
Comment From marinersvision
Is it weird to still have hope for Erasmo Ramirez?

9:44
Jeff Sullivan: He’s 23 years old and he can throw 96

9:44
Comment From Bip Roberts
Do you get annoyed when people pretend to be a certain player and ask questions regarding themselves?

9:44
Jeff Sullivan: I get annoyed when people ask fantasy baseball questions that they try to disguise as non-fantasy baseball questions

9:44
Comment From bbquestionguy
How many baseball games are you going to watch this baseball season? Regular season, all-star game, postseason included.

9:44
Jeff Sullivan: Well I watch all of the playoffs, basically

9:44
Jeff Sullivan: I won’t watch the All-Star Game, probably

9:45
Jeff Sullivan: During the season, I’ll watch fewer games complete from start to finish, but I’ll bounce around plenty

9:45
Comment From Kimball
All the injuries in ST this year show the dangers of the WBC, obviously. Seriously, though, seems like there are more this year than usual, but can’t find anyone qualified saying so (or otherwise). Just good ol’ recency bias?

9:45
Jeff Sullivan: There have probably been springs like this before. I have to assume this is worse than average. But there’s no reason to believe anything in particular has gone wrong — it’s just the average plus, say, one standard deviation. Nothing systemic

9:46
Comment From Andrew McCutchen
Do I have another Leap left in me?

9:46
Jeff Sullivan: You just had an 8-WAR season

9:46
Jeff Sullivan: Settle for the 8-WAR seasons, dude

9:46
Comment From RK
So what’s a fair return for Tabata? Smoak + ? = Tabata

9:47
Jeff Sullivan: Smoak for Tabata has been bandied about pretty often for months, but while it’s probably about even, I don’t think the Mariners would do it

9:47
Comment From Vin
Bigger impact this season… Yordano Ventura or James Paxton?

9:47
Jeff Sullivan: Ventura

9:47
Comment From DB
Yoenis Cespedes’s average was horrific last year. He’s cut weight, leaned out, and shortened his swing. Yet he’s hitting below the Mendoza line this spring. Relax or worry?

9:47
Jeff Sullivan: Consider your last noun

9:48
Comment From Jim O
Seems like the dainty handling of starting pitchers for innings and pitches has not led to a decrease in major surgeries. Could it be the opposite approach is better?

9:48
Jeff Sullivan: You mean working them into the ground?

9:48
Jeff Sullivan: No, that would not be better

9:48
Comment From Em
Where’s Drew sign, and when?

9:48
Jeff Sullivan: Boston? Few weeks from now

9:49
Comment From quinceleather
Lincecum seems to be changing his strategy to be more Hudson-like with fewer Ks and more ground balls….seems like a big change and what do u think are the odds of success? I would define success as giving up fewer runs while carrying a hefty workload.

9:50
Jeff Sullivan: If Lincecum exchanges strikeouts for grounders, I expect that he would do worse than he would if he kept it up with the strikeouts. I imagine he’ll settle into his familiar strikeout range but I am admittedly interested in seeing where he goes this season since he’s allegedly a new man with a new approach

9:50
Jeff Sullivan: And let’s face it, he could use some significant changes

9:51
Comment From Shube
Where does Chris Owings go and what is his upside?

9:51
Jeff Sullivan: Heard a Michael Young comparison over the weekend. Not sure he’s going — Arizona needs to make a decision and Owings/Gregorius is 50/50 even though they’re basically opposite players

9:51
Comment From Tommy Fresh
More likely to happen: Joey Votto quiets idiot fans/commentators by driving in 120 RBi or a volcano eruption kills somebody?

9:51
Jeff Sullivan: Volcano eruptions kill people every month

9:52
Jeff Sullivan: Oftentimes they’re people doing something stupid like getting closer to a volcano that is blowing up

9:53
Comment From Green Beer Puke Remorse
What would you do if you won Warren Buffet’s $500 million ncaa contest?

9:53
Jeff Sullivan: Figure out how much of that I actually get to keep and put 95% of that money into retirement

9:53
Jeff Sullivan: then I’d go down the street and buy myself an ice cream

9:53
Comment From OHenry
First manager to be fired?

9:54
Jeff Sullivan: Oh man

9:54
Jeff Sullivan: I don’t really know. Fredi Gonzalez? Mike Scioscia, if the Angels have a bad start again?

9:55
Comment From Jeff
Realistic expectations for Cano’s power numbers? Also, favorite Mariner’s commercial this year?

9:55
Jeff Sullivan: .180-.190 ISO, Crowned

9:55
Comment From DB
There’s been talk of Wilin Rosario seeing time in RF and 1B on his off days. Still the plan, and if so how many games does he play at both positions?

9:55
Jeff Sullivan: The games he doesn’t play at catcher will be the Rockies’ most watchable games

9:56
Comment From Mike at the Ted
Think Yordano Ventura will be moving up draft boards now? Your thoughts on the guy?

9:56
Jeff Sullivan: Exciting, likely to be a bit overrated because of his velocity. Unconvinced at this point by the secondary stuff, but I do think he can be effective over the course of a full season

9:56
Comment From Jack
odds Taijuan Walker has “Matt Harvey”-level impact this year?

9:56
Jeff Sullivan: You mean be maybe the best pitcher in baseball?

9:56
Jeff Sullivan: 0.5%

9:57
Comment From Boobs
Who’s the next young, promising SPer to go down with a major arm injury?

9:57
Jeff Sullivan: If I could answer that I’d be working with a baseball team

9:57
Jeff Sullivan: Or I’d be destined for jail

9:57
Comment From J Peterman
RE: Jordan/Detwiler, what happened to Tanner Roark? Is he still in the conversation for a rotation spot later in the season?

9:58
Jeff Sullivan: Right, that was my mistake, Roark is still alive for the time being

9:58
Comment From Guest
Other than disappointment, any thoughts on the rash of TJ surgeries this spring

9:58
Jeff Sullivan: It’s interesting to monitor the effects this is having on the projected standings and playoff odds

9:58
Jeff Sullivan: In a flash, teams are no longer in the positions they thought they’d be in

9:59
Comment From J
Have you seen Tanaka’s splitter? Awesome right? http://pitchergifs.com/gif-of-the-week-3-tanakas-world-famous-splitter/

9:59
Jeff Sullivan: Well we kind of already knew that

9:59
Comment From Geoff
Homer Bailey make the leap to “elite”?

9:59
Jeff Sullivan: Doubt it

9:59
Comment From Mike Carp
Where should I buy a new house?

9:59
Jeff Sullivan: You should probably just rent apartments

9:59
Jeff Sullivan: But I’d recommend checking out the listings in Pittsburgh

9:59
Comment From Not a Guest
Outside of catcher, which position do you think takes the most beating with the daily grind of a whole season?

9:59
Jeff Sullivan: SP

10:00
Comment From OHenry
Who do you think will end up being the MVP of the Mariners? can’t pick King Felix…

10:00
Jeff Sullivan: “Who do you think is the best player on the team? You can’t pick one of the two good players on the team.”

10:00
Comment From max
Thoughts on Yordano’s spring? Is this just noise or something to be excited about?

10:01
Jeff Sullivan: He’s been exciting for a while. He’s not Danny Salazar-level, but he’ll be watchable television within a Royals rotation that’s otherwise pretty dull

10:01
Comment From Kimball
After the Mauer semi-debacle last year, do the Mariners keep Elias in the minors for most/all of the year?

10:01
Jeff Sullivan: He’ll be in the minors, because he isn’t really particularly special

10:01
Comment From Terry Francona
Who will be my primary 3B in 2014?

10:01
Jeff Sullivan: More or less a job share, with a lot of Santana

10:01
Comment From jocephus
did the fangraphs crew start a turf war with any local traditionalists?

10:02
Jeff Sullivan: I had a very enlightening conversation with Ron Kittle

10:02
Jeff Sullivan: Well enlightening isn’t the right word

10:02
Jeff Sullivan: It’s probably the very opposite of the right word

10:02
Comment From Munenoris Espresso Stand
Which questions and topics from this offseason are you sick to death of by now?

10:02
Jeff Sullivan: I was sick of thinking about Ervin Santana, so I’m glad that’s finally over

10:02
Jeff Sullivan: Getting pretty sick of Nick Franklin not being traded yet

10:02
Comment From Prich
In order, name the top 3 teams you could see Franklin being moved to…

10:03
Jeff Sullivan: The three that’ve been rumored. NYN, TB, BAL

10:03
Comment From Guest
Quality of Al West rotations best to worst and post spring injuries—-Texas, Seattle, Oakland, Angels of Anaheim, Houston?

10:03
Jeff Sullivan: Looks right to me

10:03
Jeff Sullivan: also looks right to our projected WAR

10:05
Comment From Art Vandelay
Now that there are 8+ years of pitch f/x data, do you know if anyone is doing work with pitch sequencing, or is that still in the distant future?

10:05
Jeff Sullivan: People are working on it, but it’s just about impossible to really analyze. There are so many changing variables in all possible situations that I don’t think we’re ever going to have an “ah-HA!” moment.

10:05
Comment From James Paxton
What current MLB pitcher would you compare me to? And…will I be awesome this year?

10:06
Jeff Sullivan: I always say Erik Bedard, and, no, but you’ll be fine

10:06
Comment From Bill
I know you’ve been drinking the Kole Calhoun Kool-aid all along—who has better 204th: Calhoun, Khris Davis or Fowler?

10:06
Jeff Sullivan: Fowler

10:06
Comment From David
Carlos Carrasco, Jenrry Mejia – who is more likely to breakout? or could you give me some breakout SPs?

10:06
Jeff Sullivan: I’ve been turned on to Henderson Alvarez

10:06
Comment From Love my BJs
Any chance Stroman gets the fifth starter position in TO?

10:06
Jeff Sullivan: Better chance in May or June

10:07
Comment From Bill
You’ve written a lot of good stuff on Tyson Ross and I’ve bought in—is he still overly-reliant on the slider?

10:07
Jeff Sullivan: It’s a dominant slider. He should throw it often. It’s just a question of how long his body can do that before it gets in trouble. He does have a fuller repertoire than he’s given credit for but he’s kind of like Patrick Corbin in his approach

10:08
Comment From Guest
What do you think about the lack of diversity among baseball writers? Is Fangraphs doing anything proactively to diversify their staff (specifically women and people of color)?

10:08
Jeff Sullivan: Wendy Thurm writes for us

10:09
Jeff Sullivan: If you can write well about baseball, you can capture our interest. Pretty simple

10:09
Comment From Bruce
If Felix Started the Mariners 1st game of the season. Vs their 5th game, would that translate to any different stats over the entire season?

10:09
Jeff Sullivan: maybe he’d make one fewer start

10:09
Comment From Larry David
How high are you on Brad Miller? Where could he end up in the shortstop ranks this year?

10:09
Jeff Sullivan: Big fan, top-10 shortstop. Not a star but steady across the board

10:10
Comment From T-bird
Really, Roenis Elias in the starting rotation for the Mariners? Is this a worse idea than Maurer last year?

10:10
Jeff Sullivan: Walker and Iwakuma will be back in April. Right now they’re just sifting through short-term options

10:11
Comment From T-bird
How many wins for Jack Z to keep his job?

10:11
Jeff Sullivan: 80

10:11
Comment From Guest
Wait when did the Nats use Detwiler as trade bait?

10:11
Jeff Sullivan: December or so

10:11
Comment From Bart
Is Patrick Corbin going to have TJ surgery?

10:11
Jeff Sullivan: :(

10:11
Comment From Kimball
Is the AL West going to be the most boring division in baseball this year?

10:11
Jeff Sullivan: What? No! It might be the most exciting!

10:12
Comment From pinch
Do you ever do baseball-related activities, like play catch? Do you wish you did more?

10:12
Jeff Sullivan: I love playing catch. Nothing I miss more than pitching in a competitive baseball game. Thankfully Matthew Kory lives just like 10 minutes away from my door

10:12
Comment From Philadelphia Phillies
Exactly how much of a best-case scenario puts us in the playoffs?

10:12
Jeff Sullivan: Like literally *the* best-case scenario

10:14
Comment From Claus
So, the Bucs are reportedly shopping Tabata. Who do you think would be most interested?

10:14
Jeff Sullivan: No one would be interested in giving up anything much

10:14
Comment From Kimball
Leaving aside WAR, what stat would you most like to see announcers work into their commentary?

10:14
Jeff Sullivan: BABIP?

10:14
Comment From Kevin
Where does a primary rotation of Dickey, Buerhle, Morrow, Hutchison, Happ rank when all is said and done this year? Were the Jays correct in not caving to FA starter demands this winter?

10:15
Jeff Sullivan: It’s probably a mid-tier rotation, erring more down than up. I think the Jays had a weird offseason but I’m not sure they really missed the boat on any of the FAs given the terms. I don’t think Ervin wanted to pitch there

10:15
Jeff Sullivan: I should note I’m generally biased in favor of cheap, young, internal candidates

10:15
Comment From Jack
What do you see happening with the Red Sox outfield situation?

10:16
Jeff Sullivan: Mike Carp goes away and Sizemore gets a lot of playing time while not technically being a starter

10:16
Comment From Mario
Grady Sizemore will __________________.

10:16
Jeff Sullivan: play pretty well! and have a DL stint somewhere

10:16
Comment From Red
What do you expect out of Zunino this year?

10:16
Jeff Sullivan: Good framing, some dingers, sad OBP

10:17
Comment From Catoblepas
Of the teams really seriously rebuilding (Chicago AL and NL, Astros, Mets… others?), which are doing the best jobs?

10:17
Jeff Sullivan: Cubs and Astros are out ahead but I like what the White Sox have done lately

10:17
Comment From Charlie
Doesn’t it make sense for the DBacks to trade for Samardzija; yes, even if it means to trade Archie? With the volatility of young arms and the proven efficacy of Samardzija, it would give the DBacks a boost in wi potential immediately.

10:17
Jeff Sullivan: oh god no

10:17
Comment From DB
You have the 1st pick in this hypothetical draft with batters going up against modern pitching: Babe Ruth, Ty Cobb, or Mike Trout?

10:17
Jeff Sullivan: Trout

10:18
Comment From Kenny
Who are the top 3 Defensive first basement in MLB – based on stats & your personal opinion/projection?

10:19
Jeff Sullivan: Gonzalez, Goldschmidt, Loney?

10:19
Jeff Sullivan: Something like that

10:20
Comment From Wally
Strasburg – he has been very good, but is this the year he explodes, like 2013 Scherzer? Over/under 45 WAR (career)?

10:21
Jeff Sullivan: I dont’ see a leap forward — if anything, he was a bit worse in 2013 than he was in 2012. And just because he’s a pitcher with an injury history I’m going to say under 45 career WAR, as sad as that makes me to say

10:21
Comment From greenfrog
If the Blue Jays stay healthy this year, can they compete for a playoff spot?

10:21
Jeff Sullivan: Sure, but they won’t end up with one

10:21
Comment From Slack Schpeinke
FG says Erasmo throws 92, fwiw…

10:21
Jeff Sullivan: Yes, but I was talking about peak velocity, not average

10:22
Comment From Tyler Skaggs
Now that I’ve tinkered with my mechanics and “got my pitch back” a la Kenny Powers, what’s your outlook for me this season?

10:22
Jeff Sullivan: Almost a strikeout an inning, a few too many walks, steady toward the back of the rotation

10:23
Comment From Bill
Say Terry Collins has chosen you to take over the Mets starting Opening Day, do you start Chris Young everyday? Batting where? Or do you just resign instantly?

10:23
Jeff Sullivan: I’d probably try to get Young 500-550 PAs and I’d probably watch a lot of old Matt Harvey videos and weep to myself in my office

10:24
Comment From Guest
Is Joc Pedersen going to be a Dodger for awhile or will he be traded

10:24
Jeff Sullivan: Someone else will get traded

10:24
Comment From content junkie
Did you realize that there were zero posts on mlbtraderumors all day yesterday?

10:24
Jeff Sullivan: I didn’t! I was traveling

10:25
Comment From Barney
Position player most likely to jump from under 2 WAR last season to over 5 WAR in 2014?

10:25
Jeff Sullivan: Let me take a little look…

10:26
Jeff Sullivan: Is saying “Ryan Braun” cheating?

10:26
Jeff Sullivan: Josh Hamilton

10:27
Comment From Dewey
What is good minimum – maximum range of wRC+ a platoon candidate should demonstrate in order for it to be a cost effective option in roster construction? Basically, when do we consider someone worth a platoon (from either side), and when does someone’s platoon wRC+ basically say they should be in the lineup regardless? I know position and defense play a significant role as well, just want some opinion/advice/direction on the subject.

10:27
Jeff Sullivan: off the top of my head I’d say wRC+ numbers like 80/120 or so

10:28
Jeff Sullivan: remembering that platoon numbers need to be pretty heavily regressed

10:28
Comment From Catoblepas
Rany Jazayerli did a write-up of the Cubs prospects yesterday that was really excellent. He mentioned that they’re avoiding young pitching prospects more than the rest of the league, just because no one has figured out pitcher health. Is that a good strategy? Is it worth it to just accept that you’ll have to buy your good pitchers?

10:29
Jeff Sullivan: At some point, you need pitchers, and no pitchers at any level are reliable in terms of their health, as we’re seeing this very spring! But one should usually prefer a position player over an equivalently-talented pitcher. The Cubs have had good fortune finding young, talented position players and it could be that they get enough cheap production from the bats that they can afford to spend bigger on arms

10:31
Jeff Sullivan: But it wouldn’t be smart to shift, as an organization, away from developing young pitchers. They just took a pitcher with their second pick in last year’s draft.

10:31
Jeff Sullivan: and their fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, and eighth…

10:31
Comment From Buck
Who are you thinking has the better comeback, Pineda or Sizemore?

10:31
Jeff Sullivan: Better season for Sizemore, better career from this point forward for Pineda

10:32
Comment From Buck
Sucks to be Iglesias…is this an injury or a career altering problem?

10:32
Jeff Sullivan: For now, it’s just a lost year, but the bigger question will be what the Tigers do and what that means for them at the position in 2015. Iglesias was going to have an everyday job basically handed to him. Not sure that happens again so easily, so in that sense it could affect the rest of his career

10:33
Comment From Tommy W.
Baez gets most of the publicity, but which Cubs prospect do you see having the greatest impact in the next 5 years?

10:33
Jeff Sullivan: Baez

10:34
Comment From Brad Miller
I don’t care what you think, only what McClendon thinks. He’s batted me 8-9 all spring, any reason you have for thinking Lloyd will change aside from it being so obvious to you that he should?

10:34
Jeff Sullivan: I suppose it could end up being Almonte but I expect Miller to out-hit him and I expect that to become apparent. I don’t expect that McClendon will be batting Endy Chavez leadoff because I don’t expect that Chavez will be on the team

10:34
Comment From Guest
You just answered a fantasy question. Or did you let that one go?

10:35
Jeff Sullivan: Sometimes I throw ‘em a bone

10:35
Comment From Jared
Ventura, Stroman and Gray get criticized for being too short, yet Alex Meyer gets knocked for being too tall. Any anecdotal thoughts on what’s more limiting? Any suggestions for good pitcher-height analyses?

10:35
Jeff Sullivan: I think it’s more limiting to be too short, and I like the advantage of being tall and releasing the ball closer and getting that angle on your pitches. But I usually don’t care about a pitcher’s height — I just care about how many batters he makes go away

10:36
Comment From Cole
You’re stuck on an island with one non-electronic device, what is it? I say machete.

10:36
Jeff Sullivan: multi-tool

10:36
Comment From pinch
most likely to happen: volcano kills enemies of joey votto??!?

10:36
Jeff Sullivan: No volcanoes I know of in Ohio

10:36
Comment From greenfrog
The Blue Jays rotation appears to be Dickey, Morrow, Buehrle, Happ and Hutchison (with Redmond and/or Rogers as depth). When might Stroman realistically be ready to join the rotation? Mid-2014?

10:36
Jeff Sullivan: Yeah, June-ish

10:36
Comment From Claus
Worse way to die: Getting too close to a volcano or too close to a gorilla?

10:36
Jeff Sullivan: Volcano kills you faster

10:37
Comment From Vslyke
As happy as I would be to for Fredi G to leave, there’s no way he gets fired anytime soon. He’s got too many excuses (pitching injuries especially) and the Braves are a very conservative organization.

10:37
Jeff Sullivan: Not a whole lot of fireable managers right now around MLB, that I can tell

10:37
Comment From Brad
Odds or chances of Javier Baez making the team out of camp?

10:38
Jeff Sullivan: Really can’t see it but I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t a possibility

10:38
Comment From Beaten with the Uggla Stick
Is it sheer sample size that makes the use of statistics in baseball so much more prevalent than in any other sport?

10:38
Jeff Sullivan: And the fact that most of the data comes out of one-on-one matchups between pitcher and batter. The other sports are like way more complex with all the players being inter-connected

10:39
Comment From john
Given pitchers risk, do you hoard pitchers or trade them when they have value for everyday players? I get that you want to have fallback options, but if all a franklin or a didi costs is a minor league arm, why haven’t the mets done it yet?

10:39
Jeff Sullivan: Well, in theory, every team keeps pitcher risk in mind, so you can’t just swap one for an equivalent position player, because they’ll be differently valued. So it’s always always always a case-by-case basis

10:40
Comment From baltic fox
How do you see the Baltimore closer situation ending up? Hunter gave up some HRs in relief late in the season; doubt that Buck will tolerate that for long.

10:40
Jeff Sullivan: Not much in the way of obvious alternatives

10:40
Jeff Sullivan: Maybe Hunter gets a week or two off at some point but I think he’s the guy

10:41
Comment From Guest
At the risk of jinxing them, the Nationals haven’t had any major setbacks with any of their pitchers returning from Tommy John and they’ve had a lot of them at both the major and minor league level. Should teams be looking into what they’re doing for rehab (and that’s not limited to just the infamous inning limits)?

10:41
Jeff Sullivan: Teams should more be looking into teams that don’t have pitchers coming off Tommy John surgery in the first place

10:41
Jeff Sullivan: The White Sox, I believe, have a pretty incredible track record of pitcher health, so they could be one to observe and mimic to whatever extent that’s even possible

10:42
Comment From DB Cooper
Have there ever been any studies on baseball players taking longer to return from injury compared to other sports? I feel like it takes forever for a ballplayer to get cleared from knee or ankle surgery, whereas in football an ACL the workouts are ramped up faster

10:42
Jeff Sullivan: I suspect it’s all pretty similar

10:42
Comment From Guest
Looking at the Pirates payroll picture at Cots. Do they know they will be losing 3 starting pitchers, a catcher, and a closer to FA after the season?

10:42
Jeff Sullivan: Probably

10:43
Comment From froggy
For a batter, why does SwStr% + Contact% not equal 100? Why does PitchF/x and non-PitchF/x disagree on Swing% and Contact%?

10:43
Jeff Sullivan: SwStr% = whiffs/all pitches. Contact% = contact/swings. And BIS and PITCHf/x have very minor disagreements sometimes, like in how they characterize a foul tip. Sometimes one of them has a little missing data.

10:43
Comment From WarOnDrugs
The NL West just got even more knotted up with Corbin going down…obviously the Dodgers are the favorite, but who do you see being number two in that division?

10:44
Jeff Sullivan: Giants

10:44
Comment From Kimball
Are you willing to admit that it gives you a tiny bit of satisfaction that Michael Morse was (a) signed (to be a starter!) by Grant Brisbee’s favorite team, and (b) already injured?

10:44
Jeff Sullivan: It’s a little funny

10:44
Comment From You think youre sick of Franklin talk
If you are Jack Z, would you trade Franklin to the Dodgers for Joc Pederson? Would the Dodgers do that given their 2B issues?

10:44
Jeff Sullivan: I would do that, but the Dodgers would not do that

10:44
Comment From Slack Schpeinke
“he’s not Danny Salazar level…” huh? you don’t think it’s a little soon to be crowning Salazar the next HOFer? I see no logical reason to expect Ventura to have any less impact than Salazar had a year ago frankly. Seeing is believing.

10:45
Jeff Sullivan: Yes, it would be a little soon to be crowning Salazar the next HOFer

10:45
Jeff Sullivan: Congratulations on reading and understanding words

10:45
Comment From ZacKKK
What do you think of Zack Wheeler?

10:45
Jeff Sullivan: Talented, a little overrated

10:45
Comment From Gary
Any work ever been done with pitchers shaking off catchers and the outcome of the pitcher-suggested pitch? or is it a non-issue?

10:45
Jeff Sullivan: Would be fascinating but I can’t think of anyone who keeps track of that data

10:46
Comment From David
Pirates/Mets Tabata/Davis.

10:46
Jeff Sullivan: Mets already have a kind of crowded outfield

10:46
Comment From Guest
pretty sure Eno is biracial

10:46
Jeff Sullivan: Jamaica-born!

10:46
Comment From Ferris
It sure seems like there is decent competition in all divisions…do the Dodgers have the biggest chance to run away with their division? Where is the biggest gap between 1st and 2nd?

10:46
Jeff Sullivan: Dodgers or Tigers have the clearest path to the DS

10:47
Comment From Guest
Did you meet Jack Z on your PHX trip?

10:47
Jeff Sullivan: No, nor would I particularly want to

10:47
Comment From Willy the great
Will T. Walker start on the DL or in the minors?

10:47
Jeff Sullivan: DL

10:47
Comment From Nick
Is this finally Trout’s year for MVP?

10:47
Jeff Sullivan: Oakland’s pitching problems don’t hurt the cause

10:47
Jeff Sullivan: Trout gets it if he has a Trout year and the Angels make the playoffs

10:48
Comment From Chaco
Terrible idea? Should the Reds try Votto as a leadoff man and move Bruce to the 3 hole?

10:48
Jeff Sullivan: I mean, it’s not a terrible idea, but I don’t think it’s worthwhile and I don’t think Votto would want to do that

10:49
Comment From Redbeard
April 1st these players will be on what roster, Tabata, Carp, Franklin?

10:49
Jeff Sullivan: Pirates?, Pirates, Mets

10:50
Comment From BDF
Not saying anything about Fangraphs, specifically (because I don’t know), but a lot of “non-racist, non-sexist” organizations over the years have spent a lot of time saying “performance is all that matters” and it really wasn’t true. No discussions about the worth of making an affirmative effort to find writers who are women or POC that you aren’t finding? Prima facie to me there’s a good chance they’re out there.

10:50
Jeff Sullivan: We’ve been trimming our staff, not expanding it, and we had a second woman for a while. You’re trying to make something of nothing, with respect to this particular website

10:51
Comment From Buck Turgidson
What chance does Alex Cobb have of becoming the Ace in Tampa?

10:51
Jeff Sullivan: Low as long as Price is there, but he’s the next-best pitcher and I like his long-term sustainability

10:51
Comment From Guest
Stras was bad in August, he got kicked out of a game in the first inning and had a couple of bad starts where he didn’t last 3-4 innings. If he can avoid that type of blip he could prob add a win of value w/o becoming a much better pitcher

10:52
Jeff Sullivan: Yeah, most players would be better if you just excepted when they were bad

10:52
Jeff Sullivan: If you’re going to do it for Strasburg, you have to do it for everybody

10:52
Comment From Dave
For park neutralized statistics, how are games in unusual locales like Australia treated?

10:53
Jeff Sullivan: Good question! I imagine the assumption is just that Australia’s park is average. And a couple games won’t do anything for the numbers, really, come the end of the season

10:53
Comment From JTOP
Ceiling for Ventura this year? Higher than Gray or Salazar?

10:53
Jeff Sullivan: Salazar has the highest ceiling, then Gray, then Ventura

10:53
Comment From Mike at the Ted
How about a quick little blurb about Calhoun?

10:53
Jeff Sullivan: Solid all-around player, something in the vicinity of average, maybe 3 wins with health and a tiny little breakthrough

10:53
Comment From Sam
Who is more likely to be the 2014 version of 2013’s Jose Fernandez: you have to choose either Ventura or Salazar.

10:53
Jeff Sullivan: Salazar

10:54
Comment From Royal Farm
Do you thin Lambo ends up hitting well enough that they forget needing Carp, Ike Davis, Smoak?

10:54
Jeff Sullivan: so far, he’s 2-for-31, so he’s not making a case for himself

10:54
Jeff Sullivan: But I think teh talent is there

10:54
Comment From KT
Your over-under on DBack wins now?

10:54
Jeff Sullivan: hmm. 82?

10:55
Comment From Evergreen Bowl Subdivision
Pineda pitching on espn right now. forgot how big his uh lower half is

10:55
Jeff Sullivan: he’s probably good at piggy-back rides

10:55
Comment From Guest
Does the injury to Iglesias all but kill the Rick Porcello sleeper talk?

10:55
Jeff Sullivan: No, because he’s still coming off a 3.19 xFIP

10:56
Comment From Mikey
How successful can Pineda be with a tremendous slider, but a much reduced (to this point) fastball?

10:56
Jeff Sullivan: Pretty successful — maybe No.3/4 — but he’ll want to have a third pitch a few years down the road

10:57
Comment From Sean
Who holds more trade value? Didi or Franklin?

10:57
Jeff Sullivan: My guess is Franklin, because he’s younger and he has the bigger offensive upside

10:57
Comment From pinch
couldn’t that answer almost every question you get? “it’s always always always a case-by-case basis.”

10:57
Jeff Sullivan: It sure could!

10:57
Comment From Co-founder of the USSMariner.com
do you see a shortening of ST in the future? this one has been a mess

10:58
Jeff Sullivan: Man I hope so. Players hope so, too

10:58
Comment From Buck
Bigger problem for Drew, the draft pick compensation, or he is asking for more than he’s worth? I think the latter.

10:58
Jeff Sullivan: It’s always the latter

10:58
Comment From Adam
I can’t wait until Nick Franklin is traded so I can quit reading about where he’ll be traded in everyone’s chat every day.

10:58
Jeff Sullivan: And I’m writing about him today for the front page! Oh no!

10:58
Comment From Gila Monster
Do you every feel that writing about baseball killed your fandom? Like you don’t feel the emotions most do over the Mariners….I know the Mariners probably killed your fandom…

10:59
Jeff Sullivan: It’s definitely changed, a lot. It’s a reason I’ll never write about hockey. I want to just watch hockey and feel it without having to think of things to say about it every single day

10:59
Jeff Sullivan: But in fairness, I haven’t watched a good Mariners team in more than a decade. I’m sure it’ll be fun when they don’t suck

11:00
Comment From b
Bedard seems like a strange comp for paxton. Paxton has 2-3 more mph on the fastball and has a better changeup. I feel like, he could be better than bedard, health issues aside.

11:00
Jeff Sullivan: Well Paxton is also ten years younger than Bedard is

11:01
Jeff Sullivan: Bedard used to top out around 94 and he has a career 90 FIP-. Paxton could definitely be better than Bedard but he could also definitely be worse. The real issue with Bedard was his health

11:01
Comment From Cole
Is it contradictory to be a Mike Trout fan but also a Mariners fan?

11:01
Jeff Sullivan: I like good baseball

11:01
Comment From Jack Z
Think I’ll keep Franklin through the trade deadline just to rile you.

11:01
Jeff Sullivan: You suck

11:01
Comment From Josh
K-Law thinks Smyly is at best league average. What are you projecting?

11:01
Jeff Sullivan: League-average with upside

11:03
Comment From Sean
If the demographic of MLB writers as a whole is X% men and Y% women, why should a site make a concerted effort to hire women at a rate greater than Y%? This same concept can be applied to other minorities.

11:04
Jeff Sullivan: I’m not going to pretend like the majority of online baseball writers aren’t white men in their 20s and 30s. But I’m not sure what FanGraphs is supposed to do about that. We hire talent, but the talent doesn’t come out of a particularly diverse pool of candidates

11:04
Comment From dave
Where can I find pack factor info on Fangraphs?

11:05
Comment From alex
I know Trout is the best player in baseball and he obviously passes the eye test and every other test out there, but is Trout your favorite player to watch? If you had to choose one, who would you pay the most to go watch?

11:05
Jeff Sullivan: Felix

11:05
Jeff Sullivan: I’m biased

11:05
Comment From Bill
Can the shark be the next scherzer?

11:05
Jeff Sullivan: In that he has ace potential, yes

11:06
Comment From Enough about Ventura already
Among young outfielders, who do you like best and why—Arcia, Avisail Garcia,Calhoun, other(s)?

11:06
Jeff Sullivan: Calhoun is safest, Arcia probably has biggest upside

11:06
Comment From Fringe
Are there any off-the-radar prospects that hold your interest currently?

11:06
Jeff Sullivan: I think you’re looking for Carson!

11:07
Comment From Wally
Which Nats starter would take for the next 3 years?

11:07
Jeff Sullivan: Strasburg

11:07
Comment From Jimr
Pineda, 5th starter, or minor league monster?

11:07
Jeff Sullivan: Could be the latter then the former after some time passes

11:07
Comment From Guest
When is your next podcast? cant wait

11:07
Jeff Sullivan: Next Monday

11:08
Comment From Bag
Who is the better offensive player in 2017 – Cano or Longoria?

11:08
Jeff Sullivan: Longoria

11:08
Comment From Norm
what happens to Boegarts if Drew signs in Boston?

11:08
Jeff Sullivan: He plays a whole lot!

11:08
Comment From kevin
Shouldn’t the fact George Springer is already 24 depress some of the optimism on him?

11:08
Jeff Sullivan: I mean, yeah, it’d be better if he were 21, but he’s still been a monster everywhere

11:08
Comment From Buck
Is there any way that holding out till after the draft is a good strategy for Drew and Kendrys?

11:09
Jeff Sullivan: There’s some way, but maybe more important would be just waiting until after opening day

11:09
Comment From Sean
What would be more vindictive for the two opposing schools of thought: The Angels make the playoffs but Trout loses MVP despite monster season or Cabrera hits triple crown but doesn’t get MVP because Tigers missed the playoffs?

11:09
Jeff Sullivan: The latter would be funny

11:09
Jeff Sullivan: It’s time for me to go! And I intended to be out of here half an hour ago!

11:10
Jeff Sullivan: Thank you everybody for hanging out, and I’m sorry for what I didn’t or couldn’t address. We’ll do it again next week at the same time, and until then, be well and have great days




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Jeff made Lookout Landing a thing, but he does not still write there about the Mariners. He does write here, sometimes about the Mariners, but usually not.


8 Responses to “Jeff Sullivan FanGraphs Chat — 3/18/14”

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  1. adam says:

    Asivail Garcia, Oswaldo Arcia – similar name structure, similar skill set, but who is better?

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  2. adam says:

    Riiiiiight….

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  3. Jimmer says:

    I wonder how many Nick Franklin questions have been asked over the last month during these chats?

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  4. ReuschelCakes says:

    “Franklin” mentioned 15 times in this chat. browser search the others and you have an informed answer…

    Vote -1 Vote +1

    • Jimmer says:

      That would only tell me how many Nick Franklin questions were posted and answered, not how many were actually asked.

      In any event, my comment had more to do with, man, how many more Nick Franklin questions are there going to be? A lot of questions for a rather unremarkable (at least so far) MLB player.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

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