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Daily Notes: How Ought FanGraphs Writers Use Their Access?

Table of Contents
Here’s the table of contents for today’s edition of the Daily Notes.

1. How Ought FanGraphs Writers Use Their Access?
2. Today’s Notable Games (Including MLB.TV Free Game)
3. Today’s Game Odds, Translated into Winning Percentages

How Ought FanGraphs Writers Use Their Access?
This offseason, both the present author and Eno Sarris joined Davids Cameron and Laurila among the ranks of FanGraphs authors with membership in the Baseball Writers Association of America. While the BBWAA will certainly have been a source of consternation for some readers for its conduct in award- and Hall of Fame-voting, it also plays an important role in allowing baseball writers to go about their jobs unencumbered.

Laurila’s ongoing Q&A series and, for example, Sarris’s recent discussion with uberhitter Joey Votto regarding the latter’s swing represent cases in which FanGraphs writers have been able to integrate the observations of actual players and coaches into the analytical work being done constantly at the site. (The present author’s own recent conversation with Brewers closer John Axford, on the other hand, represents a different sort of case — one in which, for example, a FanGraphs writer abuses his access to talk about Canada and mustaches.)

What I’d like to ask now, however — with the idea very much of appealing to the collective wisdom of the crowd — is to ask how FanGraphs writers might best use the access having been granted by the BBWAA. Between the PITCHf/x data, assorted DIPS-type metrics, plate-discipline stats, etc., available here at the site, there are a number of objective measures that could be enriched by the personal narratives of actual major-league players. Apart from stats, there are many other questions to be asked of major-league players which might appeal to our readership, but which remain unasked in other publications and at other sites.

Readers are invited, then, to make suggestions in the comments section below as to how this access might best be utilized. Will all these same suggestions be embraced? Oh, absolutely not. (Generally speaking, you people are bananas.) Rather, the idea here is to get a sense of what’s possible, and to let those possibilities serve as the outer bounds of what might be reasonable.

Today’s Notable Games (Including MLB.TV Free Game)
Miami at Washington | 13:05 ET
Very likely baseball’s best starter (Stephen Strasburg) faces very possibly baseball’s worst lineup (in the Marlins).

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: Washington Radio.

San Diego at New York NL | 13:10 ET ***MLB.TV Free Game***
San Diego infielder Jedd Gyorko, a rookie-of-the-year favorite according to multiple projection systems, appears likely to make his major-league debut at second base. Otherwise, this game is probably best regarded as a “tough sell” — in light, particularly, of Padres starter Edinson Volquez, who has walked over 13% of batters faced each of the past two seasons.

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: New York NL Television.

Seattle at Oakland | 22:05 ET
One quality about a game that might make it appealing is if the opponents are very evenly matched. According to the moneyline odds for today (see below), this game — which features Felix Hernandez versus Brett Anderson — is the closest thing to a 50-50 proposition among all of today’s contests.

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: Oakland Radio.

Today’s Game Odds, Translated into Winning Percentages
Here — for purposes entirely of entertainment, and not for gambling, which is a Scourge of Propriety — are all of Monday’s opening-day games with moneyline odds (from relatively “sharp” sportsbook Pinnacle Sports) translated into projected winning percentages (and adjusted to account for the vigorish).

Games listed in Pacific Time for reasons that are unclear even to the author and presented in order, first, of National League and then American League and, finally, then interleague play.

Game Teams Starters Line Win%
10:05 AM Miami Marlins Ricky Nolasco 3.32 29.5%
PT Washington Nationals Stephen Strasburg 1.39 70.5%
10:10 AM San Diego Padres Edinson Volquez 2.28 43.0%
PT New York Mets Jon Niese 1.72 57.0%
10:35 AM Chicago Cubs Jeff Samardzija 2.13 46.1%
PT Pittsburgh Pirates A.J. Burnett 1.82 53.9%
11:10 AM Colorado Rockies Jhoulys Chacin 2.30 42.6%
PT Milwaukee Brewers Yovani Gallardo 1.71 57.4%
1:10 PM San Francisco Giants Matt Cain 2.41 40.7%
PT Los Angeles Dodgers Clayton Kershaw 1.65 59.3%
4:10 PM Philadelphia Phillies Cole Hamels 2.13 46.1%
PT Atlanta Braves Tim Hudson 1.82 53.9%
7:10 PM St. Louis Cardinals Adam Wainwright 2.04 48.0%
PT Arizona Diamondbacks Ian Kennedy 1.89 52.0%
10:05 AM Boston Red Sox Jon Lester 2.11 46.5%
PT New York Yankees CC Sabathia 1.83 53.5%
1:10 PM Kansas City Royals James Shields 2.29 42.8%
PT Chicago White Sox Chris Sale 1.71 57.2%
1:10 PM Detroit Tigers Justin Verlander 1.52 64.5%
PT Minnesota Twins Vance Worley 2.76 35.5%
7:05 PM Seattle Mariners Felix Hernandez 1.98 49.5%
PT Oakland Athletics Brett Anderson 1.94 50.5%
1:10 PM LAA Angels Jered Weaver 2.03 48.4%
PT Cincinnati Reds Johnny Cueto 1.90 51.6%