Jeff Sullivan FanGraphs Chat -- 7/7/17
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Jeff Sullivan
9:27
Their arms have been rated about the same. I think Judge is the superior defender, but they're both perfectly useful. And, obviously, it's the dingers that make them stand out
Steve
9:27
Jeff, I, for one, am very glad that you didn't die on a mountain.
Jeff Sullivan
9:28
My girlfriend, too. She would've had to drive the terrible forest road away from Shasta back to the freeway, and no one wants to do that in someone else's car
Q&A
9:28
Any thoughts/news on Carter Capps?
Jeff Sullivan
9:29
Last pitched on July 2. Hasn't walked a guy over his last five outings, but he isn't firing on all cylinders
Nate
9:31
What would Brandon Belt get in a trade? Would it be worth it for the Giants to move him?
Jeff Sullivan
9:31
I don't think the Giants should actually begin tearing down, but if this is the path they choose, Belt is signed to a very reasonable long-term deal. So there'd be a prospect package coming back. I could see the Yankees deciding that Belt is the guy they want, and then Bird ends up part of the return. Not, of course, the main part
Toe
9:32
Since Dave warned everyone about Hosmer he's run like a 145 wRC+. Is it all BABIP fueled? Regardless his next contract is looking better and better
Jeff Sullivan
9:33
Some of it is BABIP, and some of it is Hosmer just being awful in April. He's hit fewer and fewer grounders as the months have gone on. He still doesn't tap into enough power for me, and so I think his current line is over his head, but the potential remains sky-high given how hard he does hit the ball when he gets loft
I feel like Hosmer will be an overrated free agent, but he continues to tease
doodman
9:35
Why do catchers lose their framing ability so quickly?  Is it predictable?  Posey seems to have lost his in a big way this season.
Jeff Sullivan
9:36
Jose Molina, for example, was an outstanding framer forever. Brian McCann is still good
9:37
But if I had to guess, the metrics still don't do a good enough job of adjusting for the pitchers. The pitchers make a huge difference, and there might not have been a better strike-zone battery than Posey/Bumgarner. Without Bumgarner, Posey was bound to look worse, especially with Cueto also struggling
Whether there are other issues, I don't know. When you have a narrowing range of talent, you're going to get more people bouncing around, just as noise.
Mark
9:38
Is Chris Taylor the new Justin Turner?
Jeff Sullivan
9:38
He's not that good, but he is pretty good
9:39
His discipline is terrific. Makes enough contact, doesn't pop up. Had a down June, suggesting that pitchers are finding some holes, but he's a real player
Bat flip
9:39
So the Nationals delayed their game last night for 3 hours without any rain falling. So, were they just scared if some rain did come in that they'd have to go to their bullpen early?
Jeff Sullivan
9:39
Middle relief hasn't really been their problem. The rest of the relief...
Q&A
9:39
What is Keon Broxton's ceiling? The defense is great, the hot streaks are HOT, but the strikeouts and inconsistency are maddening. Also not too young. Could you see a similar breakthrough as Hicks right now?
Jeff Sullivan
9:40
Broxton's swing and miss is extreme. Definitely doesn't chill anything out with two strikes. Maybe he'll grow out of that, and maybe he won't. Peak Keon Broxton could resemble something like Mike Cameron -- I like Broxton's defense better than the numbers right now, and his eye is all right. But the strikeouts will never disappear
2-D
9:41
Could you average faster than 57.4 mph across 15 pitches?
Jeff Sullivan
9:41
Yes
Harry
9:42
Is Lindor still a .300 hitter in the second half? Starting to get worried.
Jeff Sullivan
9:42
According to Baseball Savant, 2017 Lindor has an "expected" batting average of .261
9:43
He's made the deliberate decision to swap grounders and line drives for more fly balls. It worked for a little while, but fly-ball hitters without extreme power tend not to run high batting averages
Michelle
9:43
Hi Jeff! Do you think the Dbacks will be buying since they have very little to offer and will likely only make a wildcard game?
Jeff Sullivan
9:43
Yeah, they'll make a little addition or three. Can never have enough relievers. Won't make an enormous splash, I don't think
Jaff
9:44
Hey Jeff i'm planning on hiking mt. Hood soon. I've hiked some practice mountains like Defiance and Table Mountain. Is there any others that would be good for preparing for Hood?
Jeff Sullivan
9:45
Defiance is the best one, unless you go and do one of the other high peaks around, like Adams. Just make sure you respect the task in front of you. Read about the conditions, and try to do Hood as soon as you can, before summer gets deeper. The climbing season is ending and you have to be very wary of rockfall around the summit. It's a dangerous climb, and you should probably start around 11pm from Timberline, assuming that's your route. I'd recommend a weekday
Kiermaier's Piercing Green Eyes
9:46
Brad Boxberger has looked sharp since returning from the DL, and the Rays could use the help. Is this the return of former All Star Boxberger?
Jeff Sullivan
9:47
Best we can say right now is that the velocity is there. Monitor how aggressively he's attacking the zone. If he's aggressive, that bodes well that he's back in peak shape
Hitters
9:48
How far ahead of the Cubs would the Brewers need to be on July 31 for you to say they're the favorites to win the Central?
Jeff Sullivan
9:48
Six games
Christian
9:48
5.5 WAR in 81 games is pretty good, right?
Jeff Sullivan
9:48
Aaron Judge might actually be underrated
Q&A
9:49
What's your opinion of Oakland's strategy? Seems like they almost fake competing year over year - bring in a few veterans and sell, not a full rebuild commitment or go for it, no real franchise player development, etc. It's not all budget driven either.
Jeff Sullivan
9:51
I'm sympathetic, and I think the A's have been struck by some lousy fortune the last few years, but a fuller rebuild wouldn't be crippling. It's not like the fan base sees this as a contender anyway, as they haven't been good for a while, and right now they're looking way, way up at the Astros
Donaldson did bring back some talent, and Sonny Gray will do the same. The A's are, gradually, transitioning to a younger roster with more talent. But the play-for-.500 strategy just might not be good enough
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