MASH Report (4/25/13)

Today, I am going to take a look at players returning from appendectomy surgery and the injury chances for a couple of struggling pitchers, Matt Cain and Gio Gonzalez.

Jason Heyward is headed to the DL for having an appendectomy. A couple of years ago, I looked at how players performed after going on the DL for the surgery. I found Heyward owners “should expect him to miss around ~30 days … and his production should not suffer once he returns”.

Matt Cain is struggling a bit this season with a 6.59 ERA fueled by a 1.9 HR/9. The first item which sticks out is his 2012 and 2013 xFIP and SIERA are almost identical

Season: xFIP, SIERA
2012: 3.82, 3.62
2013: 3.81, 3.64

Using these metrics, he seems like he is pitching the same as last year.

His velocity is down 0.5 mph this season compared to last season. Every pitcher his age should expect drop of 0.35 mph per season so the drop isn’t out of line. Also, his game velocities are not much different than his speed values to begin last season.

Another factor I look at is Zone%. His Zone% is actually up from 50.8% in 2012 to 51.2% in 2013.

I just think Cain is bit unlucky to start the season.

Gio Gonzalez on the other hand is showing some signs of injury. His velocity is down over 1 mph going rom 93.1 mph in 2012 to 91.9 in 2013.

Besides the velocity drop, his Zone% is down to 45% after just dropping below the 47% injury threshold last season. The lack of control is seen with his BB/9 jumping from 3.4 in 2012 to 5.0 in 2013.

Players on the DL




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Jeff writes for FanGraphs, The Hardball Times and Royals Review, as well as his own website, Baseball Heat Maps with his brother Darrell. In tandem with Bill Petti, he won the 2013 SABR Analytics Research Award for Contemporary Analysis. Follow him on Twitter @jeffwzimmerman.


18 Responses to “MASH Report (4/25/13)”

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  1. Nick says:

    I’m shopping Gio. I’m targeting someone who may be frustrated with a starter going through some early season struggles. Thinking CC, Cain, Halladay.

    Is there anyone else out there who you think is a good trade target right now?

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    • Jeff Zimmerman says:

      Cain would be a perfect target. I don’t like Halladay or CC as much. Though the trade would not be fair, but Edwin Jackson could be another target.

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  2. threespeedbike says:

    Off-topic, but what do you all think about Bourn? Is anyone worried that his production level will suffer when he reutrns?

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  3. T.J. says:

    Salary cap league I have Cespedes at $8 for 3 years, harper at $15 for 4 years, victorino at $10 for 2 yrs, Parra at $1 for 2 years, Maybin $12 1 year and cutch for $34 4 years. We start 4 OFs, I have been offered Cain at $25 for 4 years and a throw in like D. Young $6 1 year left or Rasmus at $11 one year left for McCutchen. Should I take this deal. My staff is decent with Felix, Ryu, Floyd, and Samradjiza either Worley or Tepesch for my 5th or Bauer if he gets the call and but I am currently 3rd to last in standings. Is Cain a good value at $25 for 3 or 4 more years? The cap is $260. Thanks all.

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    • Jeff Zimmerman says:

      I may make the move, but see if they will wait until Cespedes is back from the DL.

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      • T.J. says:

        Thanks Jeff, that shouldnt be a problem. it is a weekly lineup league, ugh, and it looks like Cespedes may be back in time for next week. You like Cains value for next few year though?

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  4. chri521 says:

    Helton down, Ryan Wheeler up, anything there?

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  5. Bill says:

    No volquez?

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  6. Rye Rye says:

    If you like to work ahead, then just add Josh Johnson to that list right away. I guess he has biceps soreness. A trip to Dr. Andrews is probably coming again. Gosh, I have to wonder why I am so stupid to draft Johnson, draft Marmol (then cut him and now watch Marmol be Un-Marmol). Baseball is just impossible to me for fantasy. You literally have to be super lucky to win and not get injuries that destroy you.

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    • Ashman says:

      Baseball is actually the one fantasy sport where I fully disagree, in that it’s the least lucky and preseason predictions are most likely to be accurate. Well I guess basketball is like that too, but that’s also just a boring fantasy sport

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    • Ashman says:

      Also I see nothing about James Andrews.. just a wild guess?

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    • Jay29 says:

      In baseball you usually draft more than 20 players (sometimes ~30), compared with about 10 or 12 in football, so your vulnerability to catastrophic injury is much lower. Yes, injuries play a part, and the teams that lose their best players to injury don’t normally win their league, but that doesn’t mean you have to be “super lucky to win.” The best fantasy owners are usually the ones competing for a championship in baseball.

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  7. codellhorns says:

    Jeff, based on your comments would you rather have Lincecum or Gio Gonzalez in a 5×5 FBB league?

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