Hey Doc - HQ, Reynolds, BJOL


Malcontent sez, I stand on my sinking ship.  I think there's a decent chance for a breakout for Mark Reynolds. 

He likely wouldn't cost anything we're afraid to lose .... I just got my first copy of Baseball Forecaster (Jemanji's commision should be in the mail) and Mark Reynolds leads all Major League batters in PX (A Baseball HQ stat for measuring power on contact), and they don't have a leaderboard for it, but his xPX (a general measurement of how hard a player hits line drives and flyballs) was higher than Albert Pujols, Prince Fielder, Joey Votto, Jose Bautista, Ryan Braun, Matt Kemp, and Mark Teixera. 

Saw Reynolds' PX in Forecaster, yeah.  The man is at 200 PX (!?)  

That's way ahead of Ryan Howard, Prince Fielder, Nelson Cruz, and Miguel Cabrera. And Justin's scouting eye - he lives in Baltimore - confirms Reynolds' gasp-inducing power.  When Reynolds runs into a pitch, it's simply over the fence.  Earl would have loved him, so how can I not?  :- )

Most TTO players are a little white-knuckle; you've got to watch whether they're getting increasingly abused as time goes on.  But Mark Reynolds is gaining ground on the league, the American, as in.

At this point, with his improving contact rate, you've got to accept him for what he is.  A 35+ homer guy whose RC/27 hangs in there around 6 runs a game.  He'd be a stealth Nelson Cruz.

I don't think that Reynolds has to break out.  His career line of 240 / 330 / 500 would provide you, functionally, a Richie Sexson re-boot, give or take thirty walks. In the no-Fielder version of 2012 I'd be very interested in Reynolds DH, Smoak 1B and Carp LF.

There isn't a way in the world that Baltimore can talk about top-50 glamor prospects for Mark Reynolds.  You'd be talking quality prospects who are not in your plans.


CSMIES sez:  Agreed on the Forecaster commission bit. I bought my first copy last year because of SSI's writeups, and now my wife and family know that each year's issue is a standing Christmas list request.

And Xmas is just about its ship date.  Works out well :- )

Ron Shandler has dones this:  he has downloaded 26 years' worth of BPV trend lines and templates, times 700 players, and that ocean of knowledge has made him one of baseball's grandmasters of analysis.

General principles (as unearthed by Hardball Times-type studies) can only take you so far.  At a certain point you've got to do the five-finger work of studying the specific players, or chess positions, or live sparring partners, or whatever, that grants you the ability to spar at full speed.  As Bruce Lee put it, if you want to learn to swim, you've got to get into the water.  

Shandler has studied, for every ML player, for 25+ years, what a rising PX leads to, and what it does not lead to.  He has taken his guesses about what Mike Trumbo's and Mike Carp's EYE-vs-PX trends might mean, and he has been wrong, and he has learned from this.  (Ron's verdict on those two:  if you get any bounce in the EYEs at all, you've got legit RBI men.)  

Speaking as a geek chessplayer, I know for a fact that there is no substitute for this almanac-download.  By "no substitute for it," I mean that it is impossible to develop intuition any other way.  There was never a chessmaster, not one, who did not download history's previous games.

Somebody asks you a question online an you're not sure about something, a 10-second check of Forecaster gives you the reality check that ensures no major gaffes.  There are two men I know of who have the download.  Ron Shandler, and Bill James.  Well, and me.  ;- )


By the way, since lotsa you amigos dove in on HQ and found that the water's fine ... we'll give away our one other must-have subscription.  They've got Bill James Online running at full speed now.  For $3 per month, you get 300+ long articles that James has written about his last 300 light bulbs in baseball.

And you get to ask James questions, personally.  He's got a "Hey Bill" section and he answers the letters daily.  I fired off a question about Justin Smoak a few days ago and got a very interesting diagnosis.  Three bucks for access to baseball's Marilyn Vos Savant?  You can NOT be SERious?

Believe it or don't:  simply going through James' answers, his 1. 2. 3. style of solving problems, makes you smarter.  I dare anybody here to go through twenty of James' articles or Hey Bills, and tell me that his IQ is not higher.  But you gotta go through them first, before you do.

Having carefully studied his online work, his last two years' worth, has me literally wondering whether his IQ is 180-class.  I valued his work before, but his last few years' worth is dazzling.


And our new "Hey Doc" tagline isn't plagiarism - it's a tribute, I'll have you know.



Taro's picture

Would be a DH-only as hes Dunn-esque in the field and only an abover-average bat.
12:$7.5M, 13:$11M club option ($0.5M buyout)
Not an ideal way of spending your free money IMO. Hes a one-year guy, a bad fit for the park, and zero long-term upside (since you'll have to pay him).
Would much rather rap up Iwakuma and trade for Span with that money.


Ala Richie Sexson's first couple years.  And his defense rated as average-mediocre prior to last year's collapse.  He batted .251/.382/.567 while striking out 28.5% and .284 BABiP from May 1st to July 10th when this happened.  He struck out 36% of the time after that.  Span is a left-handed Franklin Gutierrez with less power and more speed who just missed half a season from a concussion, which, when that severe, has ruined several careers.

Taro's picture

Ya, definetly the concussion concerns me. Although career-ending concussions like Morneau's are a bit rare. Span will probably recover, but that is the major question mark. It does create a big buy-low opportunity that I think should be capitalized.
I just don't know about Reynolds. Hes a bad fit for the park and a decent career 110 wRC+. His LD% has been under 14% the last two years, so I would bet against the BABIP recovering unless he goes to a more hit approach instead of power. No defensive value in the infield, so you'd either transition him to corner OF (which could be interesting considering his speed), or hes a DH. Hes pretty expensive to boot (especially the option year).


Sho 'nuff, Cots has $7.5M this year and $11M next.  At the DH position, $11M is in Ortiz territory, loosely speaking.  And Reynolds ain't David Ortiz.
The salary would slow you down a little, at least.


Reynolds's trade value has probably slightly increased - there's less hitting on the market than last offseason and his 2011 was better than his 2010.
However, it's worth noting the Orioles acquired him in exchange for David Hernandez and Kam Mickolio. Equivalent value from the Mariners would probably be something like Charlie Furbish and Tom Wilhelmsen.
M's could probably avoid dipping into their top 10 in a trade for him, and there's no way any of the top 5 would even be mentioned.
Haven't heard too many rumors about him being on the block though, the O's highest priorities seem to be dealing Adam Jones and Jeremy Guthrie.


We already have George Sherrill in the fold.  Now, Z should concentrate on putting the band back together.  We'll send them Gutierrez, Trayvon, and some UZRs. 

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