February 2014

Requested looks at possible return
Posted by Spectator on 02/28/14
Posted to blog

  Here's some more analysis of potential players who could be involved in a Mariners-Rays trade involving Nick Franklin. David Price Desmond Jennings Chris Archer All at Mariner Brainstorm, of course.
Dr. D slept at a Holiday Inn Express last night
Posted by jemanji on 02/27/14
Posted to blog
6 Comments

Originally posted on Feb. 28. . Q.  Are you a real doctor, or do you just play one on my LCD? A.  This isn't a court of law, a Franciscan Prompt Care Clinic or a national baseball site that has confused itself with a genetic-code research facility.  This is a baseball chat. As always, we defer to Gordon or Dr. Grumpy, if they care to chime in.  Until then, I'm going to chat about the roto draft position of Taijuan Walker.  You have two choices: Take it Leave it . Q.  Pineda had a torn rotator cuff, which they called bursitis.  Same thing here? A.  I doubt it.  (Look up the definition of "... Read More
Panacea or Placebo?
Posted by jemanji on 02/27/14
Posted to blog
9 Comments

. There's a spirited debate, in the shout box, as to the value of Cano's "net drill."  Some think it's a panacea; others think it's just the "placebo effect" of having a Real Hall of Famer(TM) personally coach you.  One amigo wondered, plausibly, whether Smoak had actually done the "net drill" from the right side of the plate anyway (before his short, off-field double that day). .... First of all, here is the Ryan Divish video.  It shows Smoak taking batting practice, with a "fence" (net) set up close to him, so that he has to swing with the knob of the bat on his belly button. If you're... Read More
At yer mighty SSI
Posted by jemanji on 02/27/14
Posted to blog

. Hey!  A postgame!  :: crowd goes wild :: ... I/O:  Justin Smoak hits a double.  The .gif is on Lookout Landing. CRUNCH:  Nothing to see here.  Well, more accurately, nothing that I see.   It's a fairly ugly swing, the CG moving in a discordant direction and the limbs disorganized -- but OTOH -- he stays back, takes the ball the other way right handed, and he does cover the baseball.  Like I say, nothing to see; it's a spring training swing and hit, doesn't count for him or against him. ... I/O:  Erasmo goes two "strong." CRUNCH:  Nothing to see here.   By "nothing" I mean not anything; no... Read More
Juices start flowin'
Posted by jemanji on 02/27/14
Posted to blog

. According to one of the beat writers, Tom Wilhelmsen hit 97 MPH "and looked better than he did at the end of last season." We don't doubt that.  Probably, Tom looked literally better.  Probably, he was better than at the end of last year. Once again, Yer Mighty SSI turns to its cross-training shtick.  Many golfers roll out to the links, first spring tee-off, and shoot a great score - maybe never having hit even a single bucket of balls that year.  Jack Nicklaus said, "I don't think the reason is hard to guess.  They don't expect much, so they're not putting pressure on themselves.  They're... Read More
Posted by jemanji on 02/27/14

Blast from the past, Dept.
Posted by jemanji on 02/27/14
Posted to blog
1 Comments

. GFBaseTed sez, ... Came here for a google search on Grandstand fantasy baseball which came up in a 2011 thread.... Have a run a league playing Grandstand style format and scoring on various semi-custom platforms since AOL discontinues the game back in 99 or 2000.... Over the years, our ownership group has morphed and dwindled with time. Its hard to convince folks about the awesome-ness of this format and am reaching out to those who remember. We have a spot or two open for the 2014 campaign. In addition, I'd like to connect with folks who loved the Grandstand game either for my curent... Read More
How do y'do? I do just fine, thanx
Posted by jemanji on 02/26/14
Posted to blog
8 Comments

. December Zduriencik:  Andrew!  You're listening to teams on Price.  We might be interested.  Is there anybody, other than Taijuan Walker, we can get you for those last coupla years on that contract? Friedman (annoyed):   Come on.  Price is one of the four or five most dominating pitchers in the MAJOR leagues.  You're going to tell me that you want to take DAVID BLINKIN' PRICE from us, put him on your Opening Day fanzine, ... and your MINOR LEAGUER is too rich for my blood?  Takes a lot of stones, don'cha think? Zduriencik (limply):  We've got a lot of kids.  Take your pick, Andrew.  Other... Read More
28th yearly edition (of Forecaster, not of Detect-O-Vision … yet)
Posted by jemanji on 02/26/14
Posted to blog

. Your Key To a 2014 Title, dept. ... and assorted taglines, gracing the flexicovers of Dr. D's favorite roto rag.  Sez Ron: ....... A touch of bad H%/S% luck, and gopheritis, infected his first half before a triceps strain shelved him for 6 weeks.  BPI's remained strong, however, and were vintage upon his return.  With rising Cmd and low-3 xERA's, he's a better offense and a bullpen away from consistently duplicating his 2012 line.  Bid with confidence ($22). Projected statline:  17-8, 3.11 ERA, 1.15 WHIP ... 8.0 strikeouts per game, 2.1 walks, high groundball rate ....... A healthy portion... Read More
Time ain't on yer side, Andrew
Posted by jemanji on 02/26/14
Posted to blog
1 Comments

. On Oct. 19th. 2013, SSI published The David Price Scenario.  In this article, we foolishly presumed that it was David Price OR a major addition to the Mariner offense.  Little did we know that Zduriencik was scheming to add David Price and ... Rogers Hornsby. In this piece, we talk about teams that fielded dubious lineups, great rotations, and went to the playoffs.  Notably, Price's own team in 2012.  Notably, most of Billy Beane's teams. There's a long comments section, including a poster named "Garry" who draws up a roster based on David Price.  As well, Mo' Dawg continues to fire 3-irons... Read More
Posted by jemanji on 02/26/14
Posted to blog
1 Comments

. Q.  So how has Price done this?  How has he pushed his walks down to Cliff Lee-like levels? A.  We went to the videotape, honestly expecting that he'd done it in Cliff Lee fashion -- that is, by refining his command, and using a cut fastball to stay ahead in the count.  Turns out he has done nothing of the sort. Start by understanding his "wild in the zone" fastball.  I mean, it's not really wild, but it's unpredictable in the zone, and not because of hair fine command. In this demolition of the Red Sox, watch him fan batter after batter with challenge fastballs: Pitch one vs Pedroia - 94... Read More
Welcome to Interesting Ray Minor-League Bats. Population: 1.
Posted by Spectator on 02/26/14
Posted to blog

  Earlier we got a chance to run some numbers on the Tampa Bay Rays pitching prospects, and now we move on to the hitters.  All of which, of course, is to get a sense of whom we may wish to "root for" as return for a trade of Nick Franklin (should that occur). And, except for the one obvious choice, the pickin's -- as they say -- are slim.  At least in terms of Spectometer results. Indeed, only that one hitter from the Top 10 lists bubbles to the top of our analytical scan. Luckily for the Rays, it's Wil Myers, the top prospect they pried from Kansas City in the James Shields trade. Here's... Read More
Shifting to the Sunshine State ...
Posted by Spectator on 02/26/14
Posted to blog

  After all the Mets focus in the last few days, now we get word that the Rays are also interested in a Nick Franklin trade. So we figured everyone would need some Rays analysis. Note that these are minor-league players only, run through the Spectometer analytical machine. === For the pitchers, I only grabbed starters and guys who were in full-season leagues.  That eliminates a fair number of options, but the Mariners are stocked with teen and early-20s pitchers in the low minors.  And I don’t think Franklin will be traded for a reliever.   Full article at Mariner Brainstorm: here.
Not so much ...
Posted by Spectator on 02/25/14
Posted to blog
8 Comments

  After yesterday’s analysis of the Mets pitchers, I did a quick run-through of the prospect hitters from the Met organization to see if anyone jumps out as a “fit” for a Nick Franklin trade. As with the pitchers, I tried to run the numbers without preconceptions (although I obviously had looked at the prospect rankings after running the pitching stats). Anyway, here’s what I came up with:   Full article at Mariner Brainstorm: here.
CYWYNPWTP
Posted by jemanji on 02/24/14
Posted to blog
7 Comments

. Some of the best M's authors gave two of their favorite SSSIIIIIGGgggggggh's, they wiped their brows, and they kissed the Cruz-less ground of Safeco Field.  Disaster averted, mate.  Nobody handcuffed and put in prison, Seattle baseball lives to fight another day.   The blog-o-sphere has acknowledged, without much alacrity, that 1 year $8M wouldn't exactly have been as bad as being busted for driving while intoxicated.  Still, much joy in Mudville:  we ducked Nelson Cruz' .497 slugging percentage by the skin of our teeth. . Tale of Two Cities, dept. Player A and Player B, career batting... Read More
Out in front of the story ...
Posted by Spectator on 02/24/14
Posted to blog
2 Comments

  Rumor mill says the quasi-official most likely landing spot for Nick Franklin is the New York Mets. Reportedly the Mets need a shortstop, and are making a determination as to Franklin’s fitness to fill that spot on a daily basis. This we know: the Mariners did not clear a path for Franklin to become the next shortstop even though the need was there. This we don’t know: whether the Mariners did the above because they did not think Franklin could hack it or because Brad Miller came along and they concluded that Miller was more advanced with the glove and the bat. In the alternate universe in... Read More
Bonus reason: clocked at 4.26 in the NFL combine
Posted by jemanji on 02/23/14
Posted to blog
5 Comments

. Reason 1 The last 710-ESPN Hot Stove League.  They had an out-of-town guest on, who remembers the name ... he relayed a funny little incident about Erasmo.   "It was one of the first starts of Ramirez' career.  Chili Davis was at the plate.  Ramirez blew him down and Chili went back to the dugout.  He told the bench, 'Guys, we have absolutely no chance.'  Ramirez threw a lockdown." From the CF camera, he looks so underwhelming - Greg Maddux overwhelming. You forget to invert the camera and imagine it from the ump's point of view. . Reason 2 BaseballHQ on Erasmo, going into this season:... Read More
Coffee and chitchat, dept.
Posted by jemanji on 02/23/14
Posted to blog
1 Comments

. What else are you gonna do?  Watch the NFL combine?   If, like Predator, you're in town with a few days to kill, here is an Erasmo Ramirez Digest e-zine. .... Revisiting Erasmo Ramirez was published on Fangraphs in early January.  Mike Podhorzer is mystified as to why Ramirez would "promote" his slider to #2 pitch, considering the changeup is established as "killer."  But Podhorzer points out the implications, if Ramirez could add a second wipeout offspeed pitch. As you know, Doug Fister did this over the course of his first 50 MLB starts:  groove in the fastball, then the changeup, then... Read More
It's all about the Franklin
Posted by Spectator on 02/23/14
Posted to blog
4 Comments

  A four-parter with all the drill-down you could ask for on young Nick Franklin. Overview Minor Leagues Rookie Year Bottom Line What to do with him?  Well, that's a whole 'nother question.     Mariner Brainstorm
Trying to sort through 40-man roster issues
Posted by Spectator on 02/21/14
Posted to blog

  How many 40-man roster spots can the Mariners use to put non-roster guys on the roster? 1) As of this moment, the Mariners have 41 men on the 40-man roster.  Franklin Gutierrez is on the “restricted list” and thus does not count against the limit of 40.  They used that slot to add Fernando Rodney. In other words, it’s full.  No vacancy. 2) But wait!  Danny Hultzen is on it, but he can and will be transferred to the 60-day disabled list as soon the season begins.  That won’t count against the limit. So there actually is one vacancy.  It’s just being held in their back pocket. Barring a... Read More
James Paxton Interview on 710 ESPN
Posted by jemanji on 02/20/14
Posted to blog
20 Comments

. Q.  What, in Dr. D's view, determines the fate of K-Pax in 2014? A.  The first question was whether they'd let him pitch.  That seems to be all but resolved.  Thursday, April 3 at Oakland, Happy K-Pax Day. The Mariners brass, they'll make all the obligatory noises about his needing to earn it -- while at the same time smiling slyly and turning down an easy Chris Capuano signing.  Also, the people around the Mariners periphery are tipping us off, speaking of Paxton and Taijuan (in that order) as incumbents. ... The only other questions:  injury (no issue), and whether Paxton's mechanics come... Read More
Bad Intentions, dept.
Posted by jemanji on 02/19/14
Posted to blog
7 Comments

. Garrett Richards is the New Ed Walsh, dept. Right on cue, Bill gives us a long, thoughtful article about "swing men."  The subtitle there is as the section header above. If it was a little before your time ... Mo' Dawg and I enjoyed watching Big Ed's finest season in 1908.  He started 49 games, relieved in another 17 games, and won 40 games with a 1+ ERA.  He also led the league in cellar dungeons. You might have noticed that, nowadays, it's a little more rare to see an excellent starting pitcher serve a "dual use" role as a swingman starter/reliever.  How rare, exactly?  James developed a... Read More
If he comes in to give us 100-120 innings … Happy Futterwacken Day
Posted by jemanji on 02/18/14
Posted to blog
2 Comments

. Q.  Does EVERYbody in the blog-o-sphere like Chrissy Cap on the cheap? A.  Yes, up to and including Spec. . Q.  Surely this obligates Fronk'n'Furt'r to go contrarian.  What's the case against Capuano, 1 year, $7M?   A.  Well, that's the Dodgers' official position:  Capuano is not worth 1 year, $7M.  So obviously there is one. News you can't read anywhere else:  the case against Capuano, 1 year, $7M is a good one.  That case is:  Chris Capuano is now a reliever. . Q.  Oh.  And you don't pay relievers $7M per year, not if they don't save games. A.  Certainly the Mariners don't.  Maybe Daniel... Read More
Vargas v2.0? Well ...
Posted by jemanji on 02/18/14
Posted to blog
2 Comments

. Q.  Is he a Vargas clone? A.  It is true that they throw the same two pitches: Sidearm, LH "sneaky" fastball on one plane (the plane of the bat) Excellent changeup (Capuano spins the change to look like a slider sometimes, but it's the arm action) But Capuano uses those pitches very, VERY differently.  Which is why he gets so many more swings and misses.   Vargas is gutsy, but Capuano is aggressive.  Vargas sets you up for a weak swing; Capuano attacks you to miss your bat. . Q.  Capuano is murder on lefties.  How do you do that with a slowball and changeup?! A.  Usually, a lefty can't... Read More
Laughin' all the way down the Seattle baseline
Posted by jemanji on 02/18/14
3 Comments

. Q.  How is Cano taking this slop-storm? A.  Smiling like a Cheshire cat, that he'll never have to spend one more lousy minute in front of a New York media crowd.  If New York wanted to really rub his nose in the fact that he's about to be a much happier man, they couldn't have found a better way. Edgar didn't bust it down the line; he took care of his legs.  Junior trotted out a ground ball or ten. In Seattle, we don't take out our frustrations on our best players.  Also, we don't grab every possible opportunity to knee our best player in the man region, just because of our morbid... Read More
Final piece of the Mix ...
Posted by Spectator on 02/18/14
Posted to blog

  And here’s the final group of the 26 in the Mix. A recent acquisition who’s played three games in the Mariner organization. A young Venezuelan who made a splash. Two U.S. college arms. This will bring us to 60 of the MB100, with only the Top 40 left to go.  The whole thing is always linked on the “MB100″ page at Mariner Brainstorm. === Xavier Avery | OF | 2014 age: 24 | LH   Full article here.
Average is good!
Posted by Spectator on 02/18/14
Posted to blog

  Now that the Ubaldo Jimenez domino has fallen, the rumor mill shifted quickly to link the Mariners to Chris Capuano. No complaints here. Capuano is not tied to a draft pick, and seems to be in line for a salary that won’t bust the bank.  He might even settle for a one-year deal. Left-handed Capuano’s biggest problem has been staying healthy.  He missed all of 2008 and 2009, and battled injuries again in 2013. But when he’s on the mound … he’s very close to  unmitigated average-ness.  We love it!   Full article at Mariner Brainstorm: here.
The Mix keeps mixin'
Posted by Spectator on 02/18/14
Posted to blog

Here come four more. Three high school position players, and a junior college pitcher. Three northerners and one from Southern California. One made a bit of a splash in 2013, and the others … didn’t.  But they’ve all got time. === Joe DeCarlo | 3b | 2014 age: 20 | RH   Full article at Mariner Brainstorm: here.
A longshot in the Mix?
Posted by Spectator on 02/16/14
Posted to blog

  By sheer chance outcome of the alphabetical lottery, the first name in this edition of 26 in the Mix is also a name I was going to write about anyway.  So we can get a two-fer. For, you see, new Seattle manager Lloyd McClendon reportedly wants as many as three lefties in his MLB bullpen.  That’s not likely to happen, particularly since there are a lot more right-handed candidates knocking on the door than there are left-handed ones. Charlie Furbush is a given, but the group following him is not overwhelming (although Bobby LaFromboise is much better than his 2013 experience shows).  Thus,... Read More
Another quartet ...
Posted by Spectator on 02/16/14
Posted to blog

  Here’s another quartet of denizens of “the Mix.” A journeyman who gets on base. A familiar name who needs to get off his downward trajectory. And a couple of “new guys” who made their mark after the 2013 draft. As always, the whole list can be found on the “MB100″ page linked at Mariner Brainstorm. === Ty Kelly | Infielder | 2014 age: 25  | SH   Full article: here.
The illusion of security. Operative word ILLUSION
Posted by jemanji on 02/15/14
Posted to blog
3 Comments

. This from the TNT: Any lefty relievers in the Mariners’ camp can take this as a help-wanted posting: manager Lloyd McClendon would like to have three of you on his 25-player roster. “I can’t say I’m going to have three,” McClendon cautioned. “In a perfect world, I’d like to have three. And we’ve got some viable candidates. Guys who have good arms.” McClendon previously indicated Charlie Furbush as a virtual lock for a spot after compiling a 3.74 ERA last season in 71 games. Other lefty candidates include Lucas Luetge, Joe Beimel, Randy Wolf and Bobby LaFromboise. .... Point A:  the... Read More
Gospel of Luke, dept.
Posted by jemanji on 02/15/14
Posted to blog
2 Comments

. This from BJOL: Bill, Luke Hochevar is extremely effective this year (1.70 ERA) after a few years of being a #5 starter. Is there some way to guess which "bad" starters will be great relievers. Is it only which starter has a great fastball and weak 2nd and 3rd pitches? Asked by: Steve9753 Answered: 9/12/2013 I don't think it is that easy, no.      It's an issue that we wrestle with quite often.   It is generally true: 1)  That almost all pitchers are more effective (per inning) in relief than they are as starters, and 2)  That SOME pitchers--probably 30%--are very dramatically more... Read More
Four more in the mix
Posted by Spectator on 02/14/14
Posted to blog

  Rolling along on our upward trek through the top 100 prospects in the Mariners organization. Those that have already been revealed can always be found on the “MB100” page linked at Mariner Brainstorm. This time our globetrotting tour takes us to Lubbock and then back to Brazil. === Jamodrick McGruder | Infield/Outfield | 2014 age: 22 | LH Traditional Hitting Statistics   Full article at Mariner Brainstorm: here.
[not] Dancin' By Yer-seelllll--fffff, dept.
Posted by jemanji on 02/14/14
Posted to blog
1 Comments

. Geoff Baker was moved from 1B to 3B, as it were, and the witty Ryan Divish now takes over dutes at first base for the Times.  He had a live chat this morning.  Let's mosh off Ryan's on-site observations: . I/O:  For the record, and not that this will stop anyone, but I have no new information on Nelson Cruz or Ervin Santana. I don't know percentages or odds beyond 50-50. CRUNCH:  It's a little odd how the M's went dark at the beginning of Spring Training, going so far as to leave Cruz at the altar when he's undoubtedly plenty bargain enough.  Relative to Cruz' early expectations of 5/$75... Read More
CF, DH and Designated Habits
Posted by jemanji on 02/14/14
Posted to blog
4 Comments

. I/O:  [Who starts in CF]  Looks like it will be Michael Saunders. CRUNCH:  Huh! I thought it was Ackley by default, with Almonte challenging Saunders if Ackley displeased McClendon. On Michael Saunders, I think that he's fine defensively but badly needs to be positioned deep.  Offensively, BaseballHQ is bullish.  HQ likes his second-half power index, which was 157, comparable to the elite in the game, and reminds us that "he's at an age where breakouts frequently occur." . I/O:  [Hart will probably bat cleanup if healthy] CRUNCH:  Corey Hart is flying under the blog-o-sphere radar for some... Read More
Dropping your hat, P90X, and RP's who blow your circuits
Posted by jemanji on 02/14/14
Posted to blog
12 Comments

. I/O:  [Where do you think Paxton starts, AAA or starting rotation?]   probably the rotation, especially with Iwakuma likely to miss a few starts CRUNCH:  Had everybody else been talking about this, and I just missed the memo? Hisashi Iwakuma missing two starts, that like hands us K-Pax and Taijuan on a silver platter, right?  Meaning that Iwakuma's injury is the greatest thing in the history of Mariner baseball. Can't believe that something so obvious, sat there unnoticed.  Hey, before Iwakuma's injury, the odds of us getting both kids for the rotation were probably 20%, 30%.  Now it feels... Read More
Which to wish for? Objective & non-objective factors
Posted by Spectator on 02/14/14
Posted to blog
1 Comments

  Exploits on rectangular fields: Jeff Samardzija was an All-America wide receiver at Notre Dame.  Caught 77 balls for 15 TDs in 2006 from QB Brady Quinn.  Also an All-American that year was a dude named Marshawn Lynch.  Maybe you’ve heard of him.  You can, as they say, look it up.  If I’m doing the math right, he would have been recruited to South Bend by Tyrone Willingham.  Enough connections? Ubaldo Jimenez and Ervin Santana no doubt played futbol at some point in their youth, but there’s no indication they ever made any All-Dominican teams. Names: Santana’s real name is Johan Santana. ... Read More
This is one courageous canine, folx
Posted by jemanji on 02/13/14
Posted to blog
1 Comments

. Come Up to the Lab, Let's See What's On the Slab Ron Shandler offers his own CAT scan on this pitcher, courtesy the 2012 Forecaster, back when Wolf was healthy:* Consistently has better actual ERA's than component stats (meaning, he's saavy but un-talented - jeff) Low DIS (disaster) rates (meaning, his main skill is "damage control" - jeff) Is an "innings eater" in "above-average SP clothing"  Avoid.  Crash coming (this occurred - jeff) . The Arsenal Wolf was always a rare bird.  He's an 89-MPH lefty who throws everything including the kitchen sink, even making stuff up on the mound.  Check... Read More
Spring Training was fun .. until it started
Posted by jemanji on 02/13/14
Posted to blog
2 Comments

. The Roto Recommendation Do not move Walker up, or down, your roto draft list at this point. That is, if you have a Feb. 15 draft for some reason, draft Walker at the same slot you'd have drafted him a week ago.  The day-to-day news out of Arizona is not bothersome. . The Diagnosis Ryan Divish, astutely, lasers in on the fact that the Mariners have not slowed, much less shut down, Walker's throwing program. Taijuan is not a Hisashi Iwakuma or Cole Hamels, a TOR starter on which the team is counting.  Pitchers like that, might get pushed, and gambles might be taken.  But the Seattle Mariners... Read More
An odd duck, but due some luck
Posted by jemanji on 02/12/14
Posted to blog
7 Comments

. Q.  What's this stuff about Almonte having a real high ceiling? A.  Mojician sez, One manager said of Almonte: "I think he's going to be a major league every day center fielder and a guy who can go to multiple all star games". The guy who said that was John Stearns, the new Mariners 3B coach. http://www.thenewstribune.com/2013/09/12/2781492/abraham-almontes-sobrie.... Let us not be surprised if Ackley doesn't win the center field gig. . . What Stearns was thinking of, I believe, was (1) his opinion that Almonte has a plus glove in CF along with (2) a Boggs/Gwynn/Ichiro type of plate... Read More
Bad Intentions, dept.
Posted by jemanji on 02/12/14
Posted to blog
3 Comments

. My man Logan sez, Seems something like Paxton/Sanchez/Diaz for Jeff Samardzija is in the cards. What say SSI? .... to which Dr. D sez, This is much like being given a free vacation to your choice of (1) the Hawaiian Islands or (2) the hot spots of Spain, England, France and Italy.  It's a choice between two beautiful, beautiful things and yet you'll spend the rest of your life agonizing over the one you missed. . Don't Do It (1) Obviously, James Paxton could be better in 2014 than could Jeff Samardzija ... Obviously, to SSI readers, that is.  And if James Paxton is going to better than Jeff... Read More
nnnn do it. n'do it.
Posted by jemanji on 02/12/14
Posted to blog
5 Comments

Do It (1) The Fangraphs paradigm is busted anyway.   It doesn't take into account the #26 player who slots into the torpedo tube behind the traded club-controls player.  Nobody on earth can give you the "correct" solution here. ... (2) Jeff Samardzija is one whale of a pitcher.  He is SSI's pick of the litter.  What more do you need, chowderhead. Also per Shandler, this dude is ready to explode on the league as a real ace. ... (3)  He just agreed to a $5.3 million deal for 2014.  He'll get what, $10-12 mill next year, and then go free agency.  So if you're anal-retentive and really insist on... Read More
Mo' Dawg knocks one 4 feet from the pin
Posted by jemanji on 02/12/14
Posted to blog
18 Comments

. Mo' Dawg sez, Oops! This was #2 (from MLBTR): The Dodgers still have an outfield surplus with Andre Ethier, Carl Crawford, Matt Kemp, and Yasiel Puig in tow, but they don't appear to be in any hurry to break it up. Well, well...there is no mention of Scott Van Slyke there. He isn't playing 1B with A-Gone on the roster. I still would love to see us make a run at him. Especially if Cruz is going to be a three year deal. Figuring both to get 585 AB's, Zips would have Cruz at .259-.316-.469 with 29 doubles/27 homers. Van Slyke would be .249-.325-.420 with 29 doubles and 18 homers (Zips figures... Read More
WBC-san gets a Buy order from Dr. D
Posted by jemanji on 02/12/14
Posted to blog
1 Comments

. Checkin' round the blog-o-sphere, we see that the mood covers the entire range of human emotion: UP - Iwakuma will merely miss the first half of the season, and give us 80 subpar innings later MID - His injury will linger, meaning they'll decide to operate in June LO - Iwakuma will never be able to grip the baseball again, not for shuutos I'll defer to Gordon Gross on the rehab thing, but here are a few things we notice about Extensor Tendons in the literature: (1) They can occur in XII different zones, from joint to fingertip or over the wrist, or along the thumb, or ... when did Super... Read More
Three more in the mix
Posted by Spectator on 02/12/14
Posted to blog

  Here’s three more in our countdown of the MB100 top prospects in the Mariner organization. As always, everything we’ve revealed so far can be found on the “MB100″ page, which is always linked at the top at Mariner Brainstorm. The 26 in the Mix are listed alphabetically. === Jesus Sucre | C | 2014 age: 26 | RH   Full article at Mariner Brainstorm: here.
The first three ...
Posted by Spectator on 02/12/14
Posted to blog
1 Comments

  We decided to expand our prospect listing to 100 this year.  We’ll have a Top 40 (ranked), the 26 in the Mix (alphabetical 41-66) and we’ve already revealed 34 More (The Watch List) by position.  It’s all linked on the “MB100″ page, which is always at the top of the page at Mariner Brainstorm. And we just covered a few minor-league statistical basics in our last post. We’ll do most of the list in small bunches, but the very top will each get their own post. === Travis Witherspoon | OF | 2014 age: 25 | RH   Full article at Mariner Brainstorm: here.
Yes, there's been a Mariner on every list
Posted by Spectator on 02/11/14
Posted to blog

  After ranking the hitters  here and here, and relief pitchers here, we’ll wrap up our lists of the top players of 2013 with the starters. And, once again, you can find all of the underlying philosophy here and here.  As usual, it’s just one camera angle, and not the sum total of the whole universe. Interestingly, eight of the 10 are under age 30 — indicating a very exciting generation of young starters has been emerging. === 10. Yu Darvish, Texas Rangers   Full article at Mariner Brainstorm: here.
First of Two Pitching Lists
Posted by Spectator on 02/09/14
Posted to blog

After ranking our Top 20 hitters of 2013 here and here, we’re back with two lists of pitchers. Once again, this is just our “camera angle.”  We do not purport to have rendered all other baseball analysis obsolete, nor do we claim to “prove” that one player is better than another.  We are simply pointing out the interesting results that one gets when one examines the overlap of certain “non-random” results. The philosophical background is here and here, and expounded upon here. Relief pitchers are difficult to measure for a variety of reasons.  First, they don’t face a huge number of batters,... Read More
But how do we get Shiggy with it? … when we're up by 3
Posted by jemanji on 02/07/14
Posted to blog
5 Comments

. Q.  How many WAR do the Mariners gain from this deal? A.  There was a time when sabermetricians tried to apply the WAR/$ paradigm even to closers.  "Yes, the Mariners spent $7 millions per annum, and received 1.5 WAR.  That will do.  Pardon me, do you have any Grey Poupon?"   Yowch.  It's 10 years ago that J.P. Ricciardi buried himself by shedding Billy Koch, and he had to spend like $40 mill (in 2005 money) to recover from his "Closers via WAR/$" paradigm.  The bloggers are still judging Closers by simple WAR, but they're a good decade behind the sabermetricians who actually draw paychecks... Read More
A beancounter who "gets it"? Maybe!
Posted by Spectator on 02/07/14
Posted to blog
3 Comments

I had not focused much on the January 24 article on mlb.com in which new Mariner President Kevin Mather explained his approach to his new job. Most folks had focused on how baseball legend Tony LaRussa had applied for the job — actually sent a cover letter and resume! — but was not even given an interview by Mariner Chairman Howard Lincoln. Or focused on how Mather’s prior job title — Executive Vice President for Finance and Ballpark Operations — seemed to dovetail perfectly with the “business as usual” Mariner ownership priorities of “not risking much” and “providing a nice experience at the... Read More
The final bunch of 34 More
Posted by Spectator on 02/05/14
Posted to blog
1 Comments

  And our tour through The Watch List comes to a close with our collection of starting pitchers. You can find all the links to our MB100 at the appropriately named MB100 Page. If you’ve been paying attention to the math (which I doubt), you would have figured out that there are five starting pitchers left to fill our quota of “34 More” (which is now 35, if you care, since I was briefly mistakenly under the impression thatChance Ruffin had been released, when, in fact, he had just been outrighted off the 40-man roster to the Tacoma roster, and, as a result, added an extra player to the list... Read More
No. 1 may surprise you ...
Posted by Spectator on 02/04/14
Posted to blog

  Of course, if you recognize the guy in the picture, you won’t be surprised anymore. It also answers the riddle I originally posed as to which team had two hitters in the top 10 (top 6, actually).  Yes, it was the 74-88 Blue Jays. 10. Troy Tulowitzki, Colorado Rockies Full article at Mariner Brainstorm: here.
Two pro's
Posted by jemanji on 02/04/14
Posted to blog
16 Comments

. It's a funny thing.  If, from here to the start of Spring Training, the Mariners signed nobody, then --- > the blog-o-sphere would be fine with that.  If they expanded their payroll to sign Nelson Cruz, that would cause anger.  Something is wrong with this picture, gentlemen. The most-WAR-for-the $ paradigm evades this point constantly.  Teams CAN and DO change their payroll caps on a whim.  If you were playing $260 rotisserie, and somebody gives you an extra $30 to sign, let's say, Corey Hart, you're delighted.  But not in Seattle.  In Seattle we say "Hart isn't worth $30 roto.  We don'... Read More
Posted by jemanji on 02/04/14
Posted to blog
9 Comments

. Here are six arguments against Cruz, courtesy of Tyler's Think Tank.  You go amig-O. In anti-SSI style, Dr. D's reactions are concise (for once!) so as to leave room for point/counterpoint. . He's Old Therefore you're "paying for the decline phase."  This is true of every free agent, and was the argument that Tony Blengino made against the Robinson Cano signing. Okay, no free agents.  That's our new org policy. . He's Injury-Prone True.  Big guys are, especially this big guy. In this specific case, Dr. D covets an Oakland A's situation, 9 players filling 5 spots.  If you want to play... Read More
Counting down the very best
Posted by Spectator on 02/03/14
Posted to blog

  Here they come.  Our ranking of the top 20 most valuable hitters of 2013, as ranked by our composite score:  plate skills (avoidance of non-random outs) + production (producing non-random offense). For all the background, the general philosophy is explained here, and the details here (with Venn Diagram pie!). === 20. Giancarlo Stanton, Miami Marlins Full article at Mariner Brainstorm: here. Funny, but traffic was way down Sunday evening.  Was there something else going on?  
Second batch of bullpenners
Posted by Spectator on 02/01/14
Posted to blog

Here’s the second half of The Watch List for relief pitchers, which is the penultimate group of the “34 More” group.  Only the starting pitchers remain. Interestingly, this group has perhaps the best-known (a guy who’s had his shot at the majors) and least-known (a guy who’s never pitched in the U.S.) members of The Watch List.   Jochi Ogando | 2014 age: 21 | RH   Full article at Mariner Brainstorm: here.
Numbers Nuts & Bolts -- with pie!
Posted by Spectator on 02/01/14
Posted to blog

  One of my "things" is that you shouldn't have to have an advanced degree to understand what folks are saying about baseball. So what I'll do is just make up a whole bunch of complicated stuff and ask you to trust me.  And if you don't get it, I'll sneer at you and belittle your input. No. I will try to explain what I'm getting at as directly as possible.  The starting point is my Mild Protest Against the "One-Number" Stats, in which I decry the tendency to try to cram everything into a single number. I don't recall the actual point at which I decried, but clearly that's what happened.... Read More