Travis Sawchik FanGraphs Chat
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Travis Sawchik
12:01
Welcome, everyone. Let's talk ...
Erik
12:02
Do you think the Golden Age of Shortstops could force a rethink of what it means to be a good shortstop? Currently, a glove-first shortstop with a chance to slap his way to a decent but completely empty batting average is considered a shortstop prospect. Could the current crop redefine the position to the extent that that's no longer the case?
Travis Sawchik
12:04
I think there is the potential, yes. This current crop of shortstops is amazing ... and the prospect lists are loaded with impressive shortstop potential, too. I don't think we know much about what the 21st century athlete is going to do going forward but there's a chance it redefines what we expect from the position (Shameless plug ... I wrote about this Golden Age of shortstops on the Site today)
Rb
12:05
Quintana for meadows Keller and Newman. Who says no white Sox or pirates?
Travis Sawchik
12:05
I doubt the Pirates would part with both
GERB
12:06
What does a ceiling for Jose Ramirez look like? 2016 with a few more walks?
Travis Sawchik
12:07
2016 with a double-digit walk rate is perhaps 5.5-win player ... If that's the ceiling it's considerable
Goose
12:07
Which New York team has the better shortstop in 3 years?
Travis Sawchik
12:08
I like the vibe around Gleyber Torres
acj
12:08
The Cubs have some extra position players who are blocked right now (Candelario/Happ)...could you see a match-up with the Braves for some of their pitching prospects?
Travis Sawchik
12:09
If the Cubs suffer some significant pitching injuries - given how little depth they have in the upper minors - then I could see them going to their position player surplus to fill a need in 2017
Kevin
12:10
What does Chris Carter end up signing for? How many teams still in the mix?
Travis Sawchik
12:11
Heyman reported the Rays are among the teams in the mix and I think he makes sense there to fill some of the run production void created with the Forsythe trade
Erik
12:11
How do positional adjustments factor in talent fluctuation at a given position? Currently, for an example, it may look as though a higher level of offense is required to play shortstop, because the position is performing at historic highs at the plate. But that may just be because an abnormally high amount of the best baseball players in the world happen to play there. How would a good WAR metric tell the difference between changing norms and a fluky spike in talent?
Travis Sawchik
12:12
Good question. This group of SS could just be a historical outlier. I'm not sure how a WAR metric could capture that. I think we simply need a larger sample of time to see if there are real changes to positional production
Snarfle
12:13
Who is the second best position player right now?
Travis Sawchik
12:15
You could argue for a number of different guys like Betts, Machado, Bryant .... so much young position player talent. But I haven't forgotten about Harper's 2015. So if Harpers healthy then I vote for Harper
Dominik
12:16
Should there be a punishment of teams who have a guy caught for steroids? Like having to bat Carson cistulli cleanup the rest of the season?
Travis Sawchik
12:16
It's impossible to place a value on the intangibles Carson would add to a clubhouse
JJ
12:16
What type of package could CJ Cron fetch? Perhaps to the Rays they could slide Brad Miller to 2B and seem to have a surplus of starters.
Travis Sawchik
12:18
Not sure about Cron but the Rays have a number of internal options to fill second base void ..... Miller, Franklin, Beckham and later Adames. I think the Rays would do well to fill 2b internally and then go get one of the 1B/DH bats that are still available
CamdenWarehouse
12:18
2:13
Dan Szymborski: All Markakis questions are to be forwarded to Travis Sawchik.
Travis Sawchik
12:18
I know Dan is trying to find a creative solution but this is not the answer
Hank
12:19
I went all in on Alex Bregman in my keeper league. Is he going to be a star?
Travis Sawchik
12:20
I'm a believer
Mike
12:20
How much of Andrew McCutchen's disastrous defensive season had to do with playing shallow? I remember seeing him have a lot of trouble going back.
Travis Sawchik
12:22
I think it played a role. While playing shallower made sense in theory, McCutchen is not as comfortable going back on balls and the Pirates' staff failed to execute like it had from 2013-15 off the mound (Fewer ground balls and short flies ... more balls to the track and gaps, etc). I think we will see McCutchen positioned differently in 2017. That said, he's in a four-year defensive decline according to DRS and other metrics
Joe
12:23
So Bryce Harper had 1 really good year where he won the MVP, and he's better than players like Bryant, Machado, Betts, Arenado who have been more consistent?
Travis Sawchik
12:24
They're all great. But Harper had a 10-win season at Age 22. Who does that? Harper has to stay healthy. Another year like 2016 and I would agree with you
Weezy
12:25
In your eyes, which team improved their 2017 team the most this offseason?
Travis Sawchik
12:26
I love the Edwin Encarnacion fit in Cleveland ... and I like the surplus value and talent added by the Rays in the Smyly and Forysthe deals
CamdenWarehouse
12:26
So you're firmly in the camp that Harper's 2017 will be closer to his 15 than his 16?
Travis Sawchik
12:27
I understand Harper had some luck on fly balls results in 2015...and I don't expect 10-win seasons from any player ....but I think 2015 is closer to his true talent level than 2016
Pearced
12:28
Will the Seagers end up being the best Brother combo in MLB history?
Travis Sawchik
12:31
Fun question. I need some WAR totals. Looks like the Waner bros accounted for about 100 WAR. Seagers have a long way to go ... off to a good start, though
Jason Hammel
12:32
Why am I unsigned?
Travis Sawchik
12:32
Great questions. How healthy are you?
Phil
12:33
Seems like the only way the Reds are going to realistically compete for their division in the next 5 years is luck. Cubs are loaded for next 3-4 years and MIL and PIT have better farm systems. The only way the Reds are going to compete is for them to get more lucky than normal on the farm that is deeper than most OR beef up the top of the system by signing Robert, Otani or J. Rodriquez. Am I wrong?
Travis Sawchik
12:34
Reds are in a pretty tough spot. Have to acquire as much surplus value in trades as possible - will Votto be moved eventually? - and there are no shortcuts around draft and development. I don't see a quick turnaround
Tim Whatley, DDS
12:37
On the other side of the coin, are we experience a decline in 1B quality? Since 2010, only two 1B have exceeded 7.0 fWAR in a season. Do you think this has more to do with the pool of 1B, the positional adjustment, or something else?
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