Jeff Sullivan FanGraphs Chat -- 3/10/17
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Jeff Sullivan
9:20
Yes it is
Gentry
9:20
How's Jose Berrios' command? Coming into last year it had been written that he was at least average in command, but now it is said to be his main drawback?
Jeff Sullivan
9:20
One is pretty much not allowed to be positive after what happened to Berrios as a rookie
9:21
Doesn't mean he can't excel, but based on the most recent evidence, he's got a lot of kinks to work out
Bebop
9:21
what is the likelihood that Trevor Bauer has a better 2017 than Salazar and Corrasco?
Jeff Sullivan
9:21
Both? Maybe 10%
Bork
9:22
Why did you have to provide optimism on Justin Smoak. I need Rowdy Tellez in my MLB life.
Jeff Sullivan
9:22
Good news: people have been optimistic about Justin Smoak before. Fun lot of good it did them
Gest
9:24
Where do you stand on Ryan Schimpf? Is a rougie odor comp out of the question? Are his 2016 slugging rates 90% sustainable?
Jeff Sullivan
9:25
Odor is a very different sort of player. The full truth is that I don't know what to make of Schimpf because I've never really seen a profile like his before. He's *so* extreme that I can't speak to the sustainability. I do find him fascinating, and I'm open to the idea that he's mostly legit. It's like part Brian Dozier and part Chris Carter. Bizarre
He is a major leaguer in the right era for his profile. 20 years ago I'm not sure he ever gets a shot
Sterling Mallory Chris Archer
9:26
Talk to me about Brian Dozier. Do you think he can come close to replicating last years power?
Jeff Sullivan
9:26
Depends what you mean by "close." He hit for power in 2015, too. 30 home runs is easily within his reach
Ryan
9:26
Is it still a secret where August went?
Jeff Sullivan
9:26
It is!
Lunch angle
9:27
Do you expect Jake Lamb's 2017 to look more like his 2016 first half or second half?
Jeff Sullivan
9:28
That's easy. In between! He's not 151 wRC+ good, or 68 wRC+ bad. His early power, to me, was overachieving, but I can buy him around 115 - 120
Fan
9:28
Who do you have winning the WBC?
Jeff Sullivan
9:28
DR? I'm definitely not in the prediction business
Jaack
9:29
You are given the ability to re-assign Billy Hamilton's offensive speed and baserunning to any other player. It will not affect their defense in any way.
Jeff Sullivan
9:29
Billy Butler, just to see it
What a world that would be
Snow Day
9:32
Pitches and pitch locations are all well and good, but what of release angles? Will pitching on a downward plane still be a thing? Is drop and drive back? Does height even matter? Consider Tanaka v. Donaldson.
Jeff Sullivan
9:32
Let's say we're looking at two pitches at the knees, roughly 1.5 feet off the ground
9:33
One pitcher releases the ball 5.5 feet off the ground, and another pitcher releases the ball 6.5 feet off the ground. Both releases come 55 feet from the front of the plate
9:34
The difference in angles is one degree. Now, I don't know what that means, but it doesn't seem large at all. It would be more or less imperceptible
So I don't think it matters much. Height is good for extension, and anecdotally for speed. But look at Darren O'Day -- his release angle is low, but his fastball is still dominant
9:35
When people talk about flat fastballs or whatever, they're really talking about pitch movement
The Ghost of Sam Miller
9:36
Since pitching high in the zone is most challenging for swings with an uppercut, and hitters get the most value for swings that are fly balls, what value would you place in the hypothesis that similar to K's being good for both hitters and pitchers, pitching high will nevertheless not cause players to level out there swings?
Jeff Sullivan
9:36
It would require a broader revolution. As is, hitters would be content to wait pitchers out, because attempted high fastballs can miss, and just about every non-fastball is supposed to be low
KJ
9:37
How much do extreme splits really matter for a LHH? Say a guy has a career 140 wRC+ vs RHP and a 70 vs LHP. He averages around 3.5 WAR per year. Is this player somehow worth less than the average 3.5 WAR player? Or should we be happy that he gives us monster value against righties and not worry about the fact that he's basically unplayable for 1/3rd of the season?
Jeff Sullivan
9:38
I think you worry about late-inning exploitability -- that player might not be so useful if you have to remove him in high-leverage situations because the other manager brings in a lefty
Like, maybe it's not a coincidence that Josh Reddick has been super un-clutch
But this is all unproven
Nelson
9:38
Where does Tim Tebow play this year? AA? AAA? In my dreams?
Jeff Sullivan
9:39
A-ball somewhere
If he wants to have a career he needs to be fast-tracked, but they won't put him in Double-A until or unless he shows he's ready, I assume
Moltar
9:40
What is the best way to share at-bats between Conforto, Bruce and Duda? Am I wrong to think Duda should be the one to sit with Bruce at 1B?
Jeff Sullivan
9:40
That's up to Duda's health. But mostly there is no good way
Schmegs
9:40
How much more do launch angles have to rise before we see a change in infielder alignment?
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