Jeff Sullivan FanGraphs Chat -- 6/9/17
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Jeff Sullivan
9:51
Didn't he just hit a ball 128mph in batting practice?
So that's something
Bork
9:51
Hello, friend!
Jeff Sullivan
9:52
Hello friend
JTT
9:52
As a writer, Is this new era of players being able to dramatically change their skillset exhausting? Every time a player goes on an extended hotstreak you have to do hours of tedious research to figure out whether or not some slap hitting utility infielder became a superstar overnight
Jeff Sullivan
9:53
I think it's more fun than an alternate league where players are more static. This way keeps us all on our toes, and it forces us to confront questions we never thought would be worth asking
That being said, I think the danger is in genre over-saturation. It's easy to start feeling like *every* article has to be about some guy who's doing something different, and then it just gets obnoxious because you're losing sight of so much of the rest of the game
9:54
Get so focused on players making changes that you forget there are wins and losses and incredible plays and pennant races
Sim
9:54
Love the new interface!
Jeff Sullivan
9:54
A genuinely uncommon opinion on Day 1 -- not just for us, but for any website!
Baryolo Cologne
9:54
Why would the Pirates put Nicasio in the closer role instead of Rivero assuming Watson loses his job?
Jeff Sullivan
9:54
Probably about keeping salary down
Stenzy
9:55
Cueto to Astros for Tucker or Fisher a real possibility?
Jeff Sullivan
9:55
I don't think it would be option No. 1, but he'll be on Houston's radar
Baryolo Cologne
9:56
Matt Bush has continued to get beat around recently...it seems like Kela could be the answer for that bullpen but he has "clubhouse issues." At what point does an organization look past that, especially an organization that needs as many wins as possible right now.
Jeff Sullivan
9:56
Well, firstly, Matt Bush has a 2.49 ERA
9:57
Secondly, it's not like Bush doesn't come with his own baggage
Thirdly, that's really up to the team to decide. We're not privy to the internal conversations, so we don't know how the team's view of Kela could change if he owns up to his previous issues
9:58
If Kela shows he's maturing, and if the rest of the team buys into that, then the problem is solved
JC
9:59
Thoughts on what's going on with Gregory Polanco? Strikeouts down, power way down, defense regressing... Feels like a similar profile to Lucroy actually. Last year's power a one-off abberation?
Jeff Sullivan
9:59
He just had a 140 wRC+ in the month of May
10:00
So I don't think anything's too terribly wrong. Now, Polanco has said before that he doesn't love the way his swing feels when he tries to hit fly balls, so it doesn't surprise me that his grounder rate is up. He probably isn't as powerful as he showed in 2016. But he's still a fine overall player
The defense doesn't worry me. So far that's all arm, and that's a very noisy statistic
Cody
10:01
What do you think of Mike Zunino since being recalled? has he made real changes or is this just a hot streak?
Jeff Sullivan
10:01
He's made definite changes, but even since coming back up, he's struck out 43% of the time. He's just never going to make contact, it would appear
Tj
10:02
David Price won't leave money on the table to opt out of his deal just because of the Boston media, right? I can't see him getting more than half of what's left on his deal if he went to the open market. They're stuck together aren't they?
Jeff Sullivan
10:03
The opt-out isn't for another year and a half, so I wouldn't worry about that too much yet
But for now, Price is a guy with questions about his arm. Any little hiccups between now and then are going to be interpreted as signs of an underlying injury. His stock has been substantially reduced, so for *now* an opt-out would be unlikely
10:04
But then, much of the same could've been said of Tanaka, and while he's had recent struggles, before this season people thought he was going to opt out in the fall
Point being, Price can recover from this if he stays healthy, and the market is always hungry for aces
Zihuatenejo
10:04
Is the post-Mariners improvement of guys like Justin Smoak, Chris Taylor, and Brad Miller the final indictment of the team's problems with player development?
Jeff Sullivan
10:04
Do we need more proof?
Stenzy
10:05
Any shot the Giants can move Melancon or Span at the trade deadline?
Jeff Sullivan
10:05
Can't see anyone hurrying to take Melancon and the rest of his deal
Span could be moved, but not for anything much
Greg
10:06
In terms of good bullpens helping a team outperform projections, shouldnt this just apply to top heavy bullpens with elite RP's? If you have 8 guys with a 3.5 era/fip its harder to leverage them than it is having 4 guys with a 3.0 ERA and 4 guys with a 4.0 ERA
Jeff Sullivan
10:06
Pretty much, yeah
Nate
10:07
If the AL Central standings look about the same by the end of next month, what do you think the Tigers should do? As much as they invested in the present, I hate to see them mire in mediocrity before starting a rebuild.
Jeff Sullivan
10:08
If they're still just 2.5 out, I imagine they'll make the easy decision and hope to get lucky.
If they sink a little further, then Martinez and Wilson become obvious trade chips
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