Jeff Sullivan FanGraphs Chat -- 3/18/16
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Jeff Sullivan
9:28
As I eyeball things, they seem just a little bit higher on almost every position player. They really like Hank Conger. I would easily bet the under on the Rays' projection, but at the very least, it is a reasonable reminder that the Rays should be competitive again and that the AL East is volatile
Brian
9:29
Is Franklin Gutierriez the easiest player in baseball to root for?
Jeff Sullivan
9:30
I mean, he's easy to root for, but the *easiest*? I don't know. Lots of players have overcome adversity. Players like Rizzo and Lester have beaten cancer for pete's sake
Erik
9:30
Does this Phillies wealth combined with their small payroll give them a legitimate shot at the wild card in 2017? Or is that too soon?
Jeff Sullivan
9:31
It's not something to plan on, because they need a LOT of help, and the upcoming FA market isn't very strong. So it might not be easy to distribute all the resources. But let's say Franco cements himself, and let's say Crawford does the same. You've got Nola, and you've got Herrera, and...well you'd have Crawford and Franco. You can build around a Crawford and Franco
9:32
If I had to try to project out, I'd say the Phillies could win 75-78 games in a year, and THEN they could be competitive in 2018
Mike
9:33
Jeff - I have trying to think of a good way to introduce ice to the game of baseball. How about ice foul ground and 2 skaters to chase the balls down? Do you have any ideas?
Jeff Sullivan
9:34
If a pitcher takes longer than 15 seconds to deliver his next pitch, the umpire gets to go out and drop ice down the back of his shirt
Go to hell, slow pitchers
pirates hurdles
9:34
With the StatCast data presented at SABR, what is the future of FIP, seems like pitcher control of batted ball is much larger than thought by DIPS?
Jeff Sullivan
9:35
At first, there was the thought pitchers were in total control. Then came the revolutionary thought pitchers had basically zero control. Since then we've moved toward the middle. Even now, the distribution between the best and the worst isn't enormous, so FIP will continue to have value for a while. I'd say we might sooner re-think xFIP
9:36
It's pretty clear some pitchers are better than others at limiting contact quality but I think that's more stuff at the margins than something fundamentally huge
Guest
9:36
We're the Mariners unlucky or a poor dev system?
Jeff Sullivan
9:37
Probably both. The communication and consistency sucked. That much, we know
Jim
9:37
Who's competitive first, Phillies or braves?
Jeff Sullivan
9:38
I'll say Braves might reach .500 first, but Phillies will look like a champion contender first
Guest
9:38
do the brewers, braves, or phillies finish with the worst record in baseball?
Jeff Sullivan
9:38
Phillies
Buff
9:41
Nice piece on Nicasio. Any reason to worry about Tony Watson? Lots of innings last 3 years, slight drop in velo and k/9 last year. Will he be able to take over as Bucs' closer when Melancon leaves?
Jeff Sullivan
9:43
Alert level...yellow? Don't like seeing that second-half velocity decline from him, and he hasn't yet really put it together in spring training. I still think he'll be all right, but there's a hint of uncertainty there. Watson isn't the only future closing option in case something happens
I mean, you don't have to squint very much to see Caminero with high-leverage potential
pirates hurdles
9:43
Seems like many here like to average Steamer and ZiPS. Has there been any study to show that this is a good or bad idea?
Jeff Sullivan
9:44
That's how we run our projections as displayed -- it starts as just Steamer, but then when we get full ZiPS information, we blend the two 50/50. Research in the past has indicated that blended systems perform a little better than individual systems. I like it because at least in my head, Steamer is more conservative and ZiPS is more aggressive
JJB
9:45
Hey Jeff, could you clarify what skills age the best? Most prominently, we've seen power deteriorate for many (Howard, Hamilton, Pujols etc.), but what skills age better?
Jeff Sullivan
9:46
You're looking for more all-around athleticism. Those bodies hold up longer, so then they're able to remain successful longer. Big beefy slugger types don't need to slip much to no longer be useful
lunch
9:47
the rotographs guys are into full on 10 bold predictions time. you feel like making some bold predictions for the season? they don't all have to be based around joey votto popups. though they can be, i guess.
Jeff Sullivan
9:47
The Orioles bullpen ends up better than the Yankees bullpen
The Giants win the NL West?
9:48
The A's make the playoffs?
Am I supposed to be held accountable for these?
Christian Yelich hits 20 homers and Votto hits one pop-up, which comes in the middle of August
9:49
Votto will privately dispute whether the pop-up should qualify as such
Maybe that's not very bold
Guest
9:49
If the mariners fail this yr when would you tear down for a full rebuild?
Jeff Sullivan
9:49
Kind of depends how they fail. Which players fail? If, like, Felix, Cano, and Cruz all struggle, it's not like you can do much with those contracts
Outta my way, Gyorkass
9:51
I've asked some of the other chatters this, but of the upper level contenders in the NL, which team stands the highest chance of utter collapse? How about in the AL?
Jeff Sullivan
9:52
So much has to do with injuries, but I could see the Nationals having problems given their limited amount of depth behind the stars
It's not like Strasburg and Harper have been the models of durability
9:53
In the AL, I don't even know who the upper-level contenders are. But while I'm sure I'll get shit for this, I'd be in no way surprised if the Royals win 76 games, and then at the end we're all like "well, okay, yeah"
Outta my way, Gyorkass
9:54
Who do you like better as a long term shortstop, Crawford or Arcia?
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