Jeff Sullivan FanGraphs Chat -- 10/7/16
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Jeff Sullivan
9:07
Hello friends
Welcome to Friday baseball chat, in advance of about 13 hours of competitive meaningful baseball
Bork
9:07
Hello, friend!
Jeff Sullivan
9:07
Hello friend
KIRK
9:07
HI JEFF
Jeff Sullivan
9:07
HI FRIEND
matt
9:07
1 day late but which LDS series are you most excited for?
Jeff Sullivan
9:08
Giants/Cubs, I think. I like them all -- how could you not? -- but something is going to die over the next several days, be it the Giants' mythology or the perception of the Cubs' invulnerability
The only thing I wish is that Bumgarner were 100% available starting today. But, well, they'll take it
Sam
9:09
How do I find information like DL days or Bereavement List days?
Jeff Sullivan
9:09
This might help a little bit on an individual basis? http://prosportstransactions.com/
Nick
9:09
Do you have any hunches what accounts for the Giants' higher level of play/advantage in the playoffs? Is it really all just dumb luck??
Jeff Sullivan
9:10
I mean, I don't think it's *all* dumb luck. And recently they've had the advantage of letting a very good Madison Bumgarner throw like 95% of their innings. So that makes them hard to beat by itself
Bruce Bochy is also probably a top-five or top-three manager, and it seems like every single season the Giants' group of position players gets underrated because they play half their games in an environment where you can't hit home runs
Bork
9:11
Do you live vicariously through Marco Estrada?
Jeff Sullivan
9:12
I'm left-handed and extremely not from Mexico, so not really, but that doesn't make his performances unsatisfying
I used to live vicariously through John Halama but that just bummed me out
Erik
9:13
Elimination baseball is fun. How fun would a 30-team single-game knockout tournament be? Obviously it would be terrible for determining the best team in the league, but for pure entertainment, it could be great.
Jeff Sullivan
9:13
I think you'd need an even 32 to really make it work, so go ahead and include the best teams from Japan and Korea
9:14
32 --> 16 --> 8 --> 4 --> 2 --> probably the Giants
Galvanic
9:14
My son(3yo) doesn't recognize that the playoffs have started and still asks me everyday to watch the Mariners. How do I break it to him he may never get to watch the Mariners in October??
Jeff Sullivan
9:15
That's nonsense. Sometimes the Mariners get to play games at the very very beginning of October
One thing you could tell him is that come playoff time the Mariners disperse to deliver aid to struggling countries
lunch
9:15
do you ever think about changing the lyrics to dmx's "x gon' give it to ya" to "mookie betts gon' give it to ya"? cause i don't.
Jeff Sullivan
9:15
hasn't occurred to me yet
9:16
just remembered that that was Xavier Nady's walk-up song. Xavier Nady seldom would give it to anyone
Cody
9:17
When you look across baseball and ask the managers who would not adapt Francona’s bullpen strategy, I sense that many of their answer would not necessarily be driven by the old school “this guy pitches only in this inning” approach, but rather because they are looking out for their players and understand that saves get you paid in arbitration. It’s a strategically dumb approach, but I suppose it’s coming from a good place. We’ve reached a point where guys are getting paid as free agents/extensions because of advanced analytics, so what’s slowing it down from seeping into the arbitration process? Is it really that difficult for those involved in arbitration to emphasize something like WPA over saves with a reliever?
Jeff Sullivan
9:17
I don't think managers ever have arbitration salaries in mind. Players sometimes have that in mind, for sure, but managers are more looking out for their players by making sure their roles are predictable. You want your guys to have some sense of when they will and will not come into a game
9:18
But you can work around that, of course, by having a late-inning fireman, and then warning him before a playoff game that you might call down for him as soon as the fourth or fifth. When you develop an environment where players are always at the ready, then they'll leap at the chance to make a contribution at any point
9:19
As for why arbitration sucks, that's going to take a while. So much of the law is based upon precedent, and the statistical precedent is terrible
J
9:20
True or False: The best bullpen management would focus only on run expectancy and match up, ignoring inning with the caveat that a starter needs to throw enough to not expose/exhaust the pen.
Jeff Sullivan
9:20
You can ignore specific inning but I don't think you can ignore leverage, which is correlated to the inning. If you worry only about run expectancy then you'll stress out about having the bases loaded when you're winning 11-2
Peter
9:21
What would the Braves have to give up to acquire Chris Sale this offseason?
Jeff Sullivan
9:21
Don't even go down this road
They are almost the very last team on the list that should consider making that sort of move
The Padres are probably dead last
Or the Diamondbacks. One of them
Dave
9:22
As a Pirates fan, I’m constantly playing devil’s advocate with the rest of the fanbase concerning their contempt towards ownership and its apparent unwillingness to spend the money needed to win. My argument usually revolves around how these people might be severely overestimating the profits owners are making and in reality; it might not be this flush profit center. Not to mention, nobody has seen the books. Do you think this could be true or do you think that most owners are flush with revenue/profits? On that note, do you hold it against owners who choose to keep the profits from their ownership, which is ultimately a business venture to them?
Jeff Sullivan
9:23
I don't worry too much about year-to-year revenue or profit, because the real value comes in the ever-increasing value of the franchise, relative to the original purchase price. Any single owner in the game could flip the team for an almost inconceivable amount of money. They're all doing fine. They're all doing just peaches
9:25
That being said, every single organization is a business, first and foremost, and the more you think about that angle, the more cynical it's likely to make you, because we don't like to think of our favorite teams like something that exists solely to transfer money from our pockets to theirs. No team wants to run in the red over and over. Every team has a budget, like every business. And so while every team could afford to spend more than it does, you can't expect them to spend on emotion like you'd like. Very few owners care quite that much about the success of the on-field product
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