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C  -  1B  -  2B  -  SS  -  3B  -  OF  -  SP  -  RP

Mining the News (3/5/20)

I’m caught up with a mix of recent or older news. I’m now off to the Spring Training fastball velocity tracker to catch it up.

American League

Astros

• While Kyle Tucker hasn’t dialed in his swing yet he seems to have a spot on the MLB team.’

Tucker seems to have a spot locked up on the big league club, and he will push for playing time in right field with Reddick, but there’s progress that needs to be made at the plate.

Baker said he sees signs that Tucker’s long left-handed swing is coming around.

“That’s why I’m trying to give him as much time to get ready as possible, because he’s a long-lever guy and the long-lever guys tend to take longer, just like older players take longer to get their timing and get warmed up,” Baker said. “The shorter-lever guys tend to have a shorter stroke, tend to get it quicker than the guys like him being a longer-lever guy.”

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Breaking Down BABIP: What Impacts Ground Ball Batting Average for Pitchers?

In the second installment in my series on the factors impacting components of BABIP, I move on from flyball BABIP for pitchers to ground ball batting average for pitchers. This analysis produced one result that really surprised me: whether or not a pitcher has a tendency to allowed pulled grounders does not have much of an impact on the ground ball batting average they allow. I didn’t anticipate this, because hitters put up a collective .180 batting average on pulled grounders in 2019, but a .306 average on all other grounders. For pitchers who allowed at least 225 grounders in seasons between 2015 and 2019 (n=286), the negative relationship between pull rate and ground ball batting average allowed (GB Avg) was significant at p < .05, but with just an .012 Pearson’s r.
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2020 Second Base Rankings

The keystone is probably the weakest non-catcher position, but it’s not awful. I can’t get on Brad Johnson’s train that 2B is deeper than SS, but I will concede that the lack of depth at 2B has been overstated.

The blue bar starts a new tier. I included guys with at least 10 appearances at 2B to accommodate Yahoo!’s eligibility rules (I forgot to do that at 1B).

If you want to check out my list from September with some commentary on the Top 30, you can still find that here.

Let me know what you think in the comments!

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Who’s Been (Un)lucky: The Hitters

Now let’s try to identify hitters who in 2019 were lucky or unlucky, and consider what to do about them in 2020. We use the same factors we discussed last week in our look at lucky and unlucky pitchers, but we invert them. Thus, a lucky hitter is one with a high 2019 BABIP and a high HR/FB ratio but a low hard-hit percentage, while an unlucky one had a low BABIP and a low HR/FB ratio but a high hard-hit percentage. This method didn’t cover itself with glory last season—it got the unlucky guys mostly right, but was 0 for 3 on the lucky ones—but It’s had better success in the past. Let’s take it out for one more spin: Read the rest of this entry »


2020 Pod vs Steamer — ERA Upside

Today I continue my series comparing my Pod Projections with Steamer to uncover guys with categorical upside and downside. Previously, I was focused on hitters. I now turn my attention to starting pitchers and ERA.

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Mining The News (3/4/20)

After taking last week off from Mining the News, I’m back with a partial recap and almost no in-depth commentary. It’s still almost 3000 words of projection altering nuggets. Also, I’m trying to catch up on the Spring Training fastball velocity tracker. Hopefully, both will be up-to-date in a day or so.

American League

Angels

• The Angels are considering Patrick Sandoval, Jose Suarez, Matt Andriese, and Jaime Barria for the rotation.

Patrick Sandoval (the Angels’ top pitching prospect, according to MLB Pipeline) started one of the team’s two games on Sunday, while Jose Suarez took the ball in the other. Both are considered candidates for the rotation, as are Matt Andriese and Jaime Barria.

“The candidates are great, it’s just a matter of experience and how they’ll be able to deal with all that,” Maddon said of the 22-year-old Suarez and 23-year-old Sandoval. “If you’re a scout and maybe just ran a fantasy baseball team, you kind of like this stuff. …

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The Sleeper and the Bust Episode: 788 – Starting Pitchers Pt. 5 (#81-101 +10!)

03/04/20

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STARTING PITCHERS Pt. 5 (#81-101 + 10 more!)

81-86 (1:40)

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Why Luis Robert is Ridiculously Overvalued

Here we go again! Every season there’s at least one mega-hyped player expected to make his much anticipated debut during the year, and his market price reflects the unbelievable excitement. The last time we did this, it was Vladimir Guerrero Jr., who I specifically called out at the end of February last year for being insanely priced. Now, it’s White Sox outfielder and seventh overall ranked prospect Luis Robert.

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2020 First Base Rankings

First base can dry up quickly if you’re not paying attention, but I do feel better about the position than I did at this time a year ago. I’m intrigued by that tier starting with McMahon as several of those guys could pay large dividends. Does McMahon himself take a step? Will Santana be a power/speed stud again? How do Dozier, Gurriel, and Canha follow up their breakout seasons? I don’t mind playing in that tier, but I don’t want my starting 1B coming from there.

The blue bar starts a new tier.

If you want to check out my list from September with some commentary on the Top 30, you can still find that here.

Let me know what you think in the comments!

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Draft-in-Progress Recap: TGFBI (Rounds 11-20)

Last week, I recapped the first 10 rounds of my the Great Fantasy Baseball Invitational (TGFBI) draft. I’m feeling good about it so far, which is a somewhat predictable feeling to have, since I probably shouldn’t hate my team yet. But it’s more than I can say about last year’s draft, which went poorly. Of course, I’m writing this intro through 14 rounds, and anything can happen in the next six or 16.

If this is your first time hearing about TGFBI, you can click my last post in the first sentence for more information. Ditto, some of my pre-draft planning. Otherwise, here’s my roster through 10 rounds:

Through 10 Rounds
Pos Player Pick #
C
C
1B
2B Ozzie Albies 3.39
SS Trevor Story 1.09
3B Alex Bregman 2.22
CI
MI Elvis Andrus 9.129
OF Jeff McNeil 6.82
OF Oscar Mercado 7.99
OF
OF
OF
UT Nelson Cruz 5.69
 
P Aaron Nola 4.52
P Carlos Carrasco 8.112
P Hyun-Jin Ryu 10.142
P
P
P
P
P
P
 
b
b
b
b
b
b
b

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