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Sporting Fairytales Part 2: National Champions

31 Aug 2020 15:30:12
{Ed's Note - Ed001 has posted a new article entitled, Sporting Fairytales Part 2: National Champions

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11 Jul 2020 18:47:15
My All-MLB Team

Lineup

LF Acuña Jr.
CF Trout
RF Yelich
3B Arenado
1B Bellinger
DH Cruz
C Sanchez
SS Lindor
2B Altuve

Bench

C Realmuto
1B Freeman
3B/SS Bregman
IF/OF Báez
OF Betts

Rotation

deGrom
Cole
Scherzer
Verlander
Kershaw

Bullpen

Hader
Chapman
Jansen
Osuna
Betances
Hand
Britton

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06 Feb 2020 21:13:09
... deleted

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20 Jan 2020 14:29:45
Yankees Extension Candidates

The Yankees have a lot of players that could be extension candidates before Spring Training rolls around. Not saying all or any of these happen but here is what I think some extensions might look like if they were to happen.

James Paxton- 4 years $80 million

Masahiro Tanaka- 3 years $45 million

D.J. LeMahieu- 3 years $60 million

Aaron Judge- 8 years $240 million

Gary Sanchez- 5 years $100 million

Gleyber Torres- 10 years $250 million

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05 Feb 2020 23:17:33
I can see the possibilities of these extensions but I think they will be more inclined to extend Judge, Torres, and Sanchez over Tanaka (injury prone) Paxton (injury prone) and LaMahieu (possible decline)

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09 Jan 2020 03:56:51
The Royals have stated they will only trade Merrifield if they receive some MLB ready players, and some top minor leaguers. I propose the Cubs trade Happ, Bote, and either Ethan Hearn or Ronnier Quentiro (any cathers not named Conteras, Caratini or Amaya) and either a pitcher like Oscar De La Cruz or James Norwood. The Royals get 2 MLB players, a excellent minor league catcher which they need, and a potential relief pitcher.

The other trade I suggest is the Cubs trade Chatwood and attach Decalso to him for a mid-level minor league player. The purpose of this trade is to dump salary. A team like Minnesota, or the Angels might be interested. There is no point for the Cubs to hang onto Chatwood this year, if he is bad they are done with him, if he is good they cannot afford to resign him. Better to give one of the you ng pitchers whether Azolay, Mills, Rea or whoever experience since they will be around long term. Decalso is just a waste of a roster spot and the Cubs should have never signed him, he never could hit. By not asking for a big return one of the teams that needs a starter may take Chatwood since is 13 mil salary is not that high. Granted Decalso is a waste, but they are not surrendering any decent prospects.

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09 Jan 2020 17:57:06
The Royals likely want guys who aren't a year away from arbitration, especially for their #1 trade piece.

Frankly, I think the Cubs would have to begin a package with Amaya, Hoerner, or Ademan to get Merrifield, and it might have be a combo of two of them. And even then, I think several teams would outbid Chicago for him.

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07 Jan 2020 16:18:35
I thought I'd look at 2019 overperformers, based on BABIP vs. xBABIP differences.

Now, a couple notes:

1) I used a calculation developed by Alex Chamberlain at Fangraphs. This calculator accounts for things like Line Drive %, IFFB, Hard Hit, Speed, Opposite-field hits. Ultimately, the kind of factors that often factor into likeliness for a hit.

2) Some players have unnaturally big xBABIP and BABIP splits. However, just because this is true doesn't mean that a player won't regress. If you disagree, and want to use this defense, you need to give me THREE years worth of data, at a minimum.

3) xBABIP, by nature, gives credit to players who changed their swing, approach, skills or physique. Those changes are already considered, and will manifest themselves in the stats.

4) Regression doesn't guarantee that a player will get worse. Certain changes in stats can change one's BABIP. But statistical trends DO suggest that negative regression is the norm for players who far exceed their xBABIP.

So here are the top 10 BABIP hitters from 2019 (minimum 300 PAs) and their xBABIP.

1. Fernando Tatis: 410 BABIP/.357 xBABIP. Difference: .053

2. Yoan Moncada: .406/.349 Diff: .057

3. Keston Hiura: .402/.357 Diff: .045

4. Tim Anderson: .399/.347 Diff: .052

5. Bryan Reynolds: .387/.357 Diff: .030

6. David Dahl: .386/.358 Diff: .028

7. Brandon Lowe: .377/.348 Diff: .029

8. Harold Castro: .367/.367 Diff: .000

9. Yordan Alvarez: .366/.354 Diff: .012

10. Jorge Alfaro: .364/.359 Diff: .005

A few observations:

1) As usual, the guys at the very top see pretty massive differences. Moncada, Tatis, and Anderson are all over 50 points higher, which is the first time in 5 seasons we've had three that exceed it that highly.

2) Jorge Alfaro's BABIP actually came down from 2018 (.406 BABIP). Since batted ball data was collected (2002), we still have not seen a player manufacture two consecutive .400 BABIP seasons (with 300 PAs). Alfaro had two in a row (.420 in 2017), but he only had 118 PAs, which is not substantive to give data.

3) Castro, Alvarez, and Alfaro were the only ones remotely close to their xBABIP (Castro was dead-on). The thing in common: True IFFB % (FB x IFFB). Castro had a 3.3% IFFB, but that's compared to just a 22.5% fly ball rate. Turns out that not hitting IFFB helps.

4) Moncada, Tatis, and Anderson's thing in common: speed. If there's a skill that will likely result in wider xBABIP vs. BABIP differences, speed is the more likely factor. Although, this isn't a guarantee. Adalberto Mondesi was 15th in BABIP and his xBABIP was only .014 off. Trevor Story's (ranked 11th) speed factor was higher than Anderson & Moncada, and only .004 off.

In other words, speed helps offset it, but there's still underlying factors, and none which are consistent.

Based on that inconsistency, the top three most likely to regress in 2020: Fernando Tatis, Yoan Moncada, Tim Anderson.

This doesn't mean they will be bad players. But if you're expecting them to take steps forward in 2020, you're betting against nearly 2 decades worth of data.

The most unlikely to regress: While the easy choice would be Harold Castro, I'm going to pick Yordan Alvarez. His 51% hard hit rate, and his moderate 37% fly ball rate has the makings of being highly sustainable.

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07 Jan 2020 16:58:37
I did the same with every team.

Top underperforming team via xBABIP: three way tie for the Angels, Dodgers, and Athletics at .047. Cardinals and Giants were one point below (.046).

Top OVERperforming team: White Sox. 2019 BABIP: .329. xBABIP: .329. Chicago's .329 BABIP put them #1 in baseball. The Rockies had .321 (thanks to a comical .348 home BABIP vs. 292 road) .

If you neutralize it based on xBABIP, the White Sox were 17th. So what happened? There are several factors, but the White Sox were the third worst team, per Fangraphs, in hard hit percentage (32.8%) . They were just barely above the Mariners (32.5) and Orioles (32.4). And a full percent behind the Padres (33.9).

The other element at play: they were #1 in opposite field hits (28.7%) . And the next highest team, Miami, wasn't all that close (26.9%) . xBABIP considers opposite field hits, but it weighs them less than any other factor. This is likely because hitting it opposite field is only controllable in a very minimal way. In other words, opposite field hits are likely the result of greater luck and not so much a sustainable factor.

The White Sox also had 2 of the top 10 BABIP guys, and 4 of the top 25 (McCanna and Leury Garcia) . That will obviously prop up their BABIP.

It'll be interesting to see how the White Sox do with the levels of xBABIP regression they face all around them.

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08 Jan 2020 22:04:00
Statbook, are you just trying to stir the pot with one individual?

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09 Jan 2020 00:53:32
If anyone gets triggered because of stats, that's their problem.

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12 Jan 2020 06:06:59
Moncada and Anderson definitely aren't going to hit .315 and .335 again, respectively. I think Moncada will benefit with continued plate discipline improvements and I'd bet Anderson to sit .285 - .300 for the next couple of seasons.

One point I will disagree with you on is opposite field hits. I think with expected stats in general, the guys who always underperform are the guys that are easily shifted against. If your offensive approach is one that allows you to hit balls all over the diamond, you're obviously going to be harder to defend against. These will be the guys who generally overperform their expected stats.

Barring injury, McCann and Garcia won't see regular ABs in 2020. Only Moncada, Anderson, Abreu, and Jimenez will be the returning regulars in the lineup, so there isn't really regression "all around them". The Jon Jays of the world are not back. Of those 4, their batted ball profiles, in terms of direction, show nothing to warrant extreme shifts. Only left handed Moncada sees a decent share.

The 2020 White Sox offense has the opportunity to be particularly potent after a really good offseason.

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12 Jan 2020 21:53:41
Regarding opposite field hits, there's a reason the formula considers them, and for the very reason you stated. But there's also good reason why it is given the lowest weight (for the reason I stated) : players can only control where the ball is hit to a very minimal degree. If players can control where the ball is hit, you would never see players get shifted against. So your retorts are already considered in the formula.

The White Sox have to be given credit for being active this winter. And there's probably as many bounce-back candidates as there are regression candidates next year.

The point of the exercise wasn't to throw shade at the White Sox, but it just turned out that the White Sox had a lot of guys (and their best offensive performers last year) who significantly over-performed and should see a massive decline in 2020.

The bigger point was actually to look at Tatis and throw some caution regarding people's expectations there. Padres fans seem to think the guy will hit 150 wRC+ next year, or higher. I didn't even realize that Moncada's BABIP was that comically high.

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12 Dec 2019 16:46:37
Interesting chuck of Craig Edwards' FanGraphs article on David Price's trade value.

"Benintendi's value then sits in the $50 million range above his expected pay. Packaging Benintendi with Price and maybe $5 million per year is pretty close to a fair deal. Is that a deal that makes sense for the Red Sox? That depends on how important it is to Boston to get below the competitive balance tax threshold.
A Red Sox team without Price and Benintendi would be cheaper and not as good, but the team would still be a contender"

I proposed a total of $21 million added from Boston. Edwards thinks $15 Million would get the job done. He also doesn't believe any significant prospects would be going the other way.

But this was a terrible idea when I proposed it. And it's also worth noting that Edwards recognizes surplus value in trade discussions, and then how that can change given their organizational desire to get under the luxury tax threshold. Some on here treat the idea as some sort of conspiracy. "It's not a robust system", as Statbook told us.

It doesn't make as much sense now that they acquired Mazara, however.

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21 Dec 2019 23:51:50
It's a terrible idea even when Craig Edwards suggests it. The Red Sox aren't giving up Andrew Benintendi just to get rid of David Price. If we go by the "surplus value" argument, wouldn't Benintendi at an estimated 5M be a better value than what they can find on the open market? They'll have to fill that OF spot if they intend on being competitive. So, who can provide around 2-3 WAR (he's projected at 2.6) for only 5M next season? To sign that kind of production in the OF requires a Marcell Ozuna/ Castellanos type player, and that'll likely require a 75M contract, or around 15-18M a year. which is between 25-30% of the "value".

Also, Craig Edwards makes absolutely zero mention of what kind of return would be necessary for Price/ Benintendi. You likely inferred it and think it's true, but it's not mentioned, unless I clearly missed something while reading it.

It's an idea that maybe makes sense when you throw some numbers into the mix, but it makes zero sense in reality and there's just one trade in recent years that resembles this one: Cano/ Diaz. And even that trade netted two elite prospects, and Price/ Benintendi are FAR more valuable than Cano/ Diaz.

Finally, it's cute that I take so much space in your head. Should I start paying rent? I'm feeling charitable and want to help someone clearly in need.

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23 Dec 2019 05:12:33
No, it's really not about you having space in my head as much as you'd hope. The fact that you previously literally told me to cite FanGraphs as my source as if that would legitimize my claim, then told me a trade idea was terrible, only to have a writer for FanGraphs have essentially the same idea. Quite ironic.

Price/ Benny would not get nearly as much as Cano/ Diaz. Not even close. Why? Because Boston has much more of an incentive to move Price's money than Seattle did with Cano's. Boston's window is closing; Seattle realized their window was never open. Seattle didn't have a Mookie Betts of their own that they had to try and make re-signable. It's the same rationale as to why adding a 5-win player is more valuable to an 88-win team than to a 78-win team.

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23 Dec 2019 12:59:50
Every time I think you can't get any denser, you write another response.

I told you to quote Fangraphs because you literally wrote the same thing from their website verbatim (regarding xFIP regression), not because I think it makes you sound more legitimate.

Finally, I wish to take up zero space in your head. I'm not into you that way. But it's evident that you're clearly infatuated by me. If you're not, you wouldn't go out of your way to make specific posts calling me out.

You don't make these posts for people you don't care about.

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23 Dec 2019 14:10:20
I didn't go out of my way at all. This literally fell into my lap. Didn't mean to call you out. I just found amusement in the irony.

You just tend to not take it well when someone else on here knows what they are talking about, especially if they don't agree with you. I tend to enjoy the back and forth because that's literally the intention of this forum, no? Lighten up a bit.

I happen to think this is not a terrible trade, but you are allowed to disagree. The creative ones are the best ones to debate. Precedent is important, yes, but I think we will continue to see some lacking instances in baseball over the next decade (as we already have) in transactions and roster construction.

If Chaim Bloom's (man, what a name) plan has any scenario in which Mookie Betts is not part of the team long-term, I see that as a grave mistake. You move money around to retain him, not move him in order to get your finances aligned. He's a top-5 player in baseball in the heart of his prime. The Boston Red Sox of all teams have no excuse to feel the need that they have to trade him. It's crazy in my opinion. That's would be my motivation to move Price's contract, even if I have to move Benintendi who is not only entering arbitration himself, but hasn't exactly performed as they once thought he would, nor does he have the signals to suggest a major ascension is forthcoming. They can throw Martinez in left, for at least their home games, and also be in the position to offer their homegrown superstar the extension he rightfully deserves.

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23 Dec 2019 17:50:37
It’s not a terrible idea. It’s a laughably stupid idea. If the Red Sox want to complete, trading Benintendi away when they have literally zero decent option to replace him (and none at his salary bs. production) .

I don’t think Benintendi is very good, but the Red Sox have absolutely no one in their system ready or capable of matching his production.

By the way, this is at least the third time you’ve went out of your way to call me out on this site. It’s okay, I’m not offended.

But at least just acknowledge that I’m clearly in your head and we can move along.

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23 Dec 2019 18:45:43
They can find a league average hitter for pretty cheap. You agree that he's nothing special, but then act like there isn't an abundance of 100 wRC+ hitters that could choose from either via free agency or the trade market. They can go all out for 2020, or set themselves up nicely for 2020 and even beyond if they can retain Betts. You're judging this trade on its own - you have to look at the bigger picture here. We can go back and forth on what the required return would be, but this is not an outlandish idea even in the slightest. Actually, there are reports that it even been discussed.

With all of the proposals on this site, the fact that this one is laughably stupid to you is, well, laughably stupid. It's your need for supreme dominance on here that's causing you to think this way. I can speak for most on here and say that it gets old really, really quickly. Again, lighten up. You are not in anyone's head on this anonymous baseball rumors forum. Hahaha.

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23 Dec 2019 22:16:49
Okay, I'll concede one thing: The Red Sox could very well trade Benintendi + Price. I could see it. But it won't be without "any significant prospects would be going the other way. " It'll be a lot like the Cano/ Diaz trade, and likely a greater return.

And every report, especially those from Passan and Rosenthal have indicated that while teams have asked, it doesn't seem likely the Red Sox would trade from the major league roster just to move Price.

Mark Feinsand even wrote this, regarding discussion between the Reds and Red Sox:

"One scenario that has been floated in recent weeks would have the Red Sox attaching a young player -- Andrew Benintendi's name has been mentioned often -- to Price in order to dump the pitcher's contract. A source said that concept has not been considered by Boston's front office -- nor will it be, especially not with Benintendi. "

Chad Jennings of The Athletic has said Bloom has resisted the idea of attaching a prospect to sweeten the deal. This was the quote from Bloom: "I don’t think we’d ever want to rule anything out, but so much of what we’re always going to be trying to accomplish, but certainly now, is to make sure we have as strong a farm system as possible. ”

So based on every indication, it's not even a factor the Red Sox have or will consider, unless of course they are completely blown away by a deal. It also doesn't seem like a team with almost no MLB depth would consider dealing from what he already has, especially if trying to compete.

Your insistence that this trade wouldn't require anything significant is the most laughable part of it. The Red Sox aren't just handing over young, controllable talent for nothing. There's almost zero precedence for such a suggestion. Show me even one trade in the last 3 years in which a good, controllable MLB player was "thrown in" for an expensive player, and in which the other team gave up nothing for the return. Just one. I'd imagine you can't.

And finally, I'll turn it to you: lighten up. I'm not the one posting entire posts to try and target an individual on this site. If you want anyone to believe I'm not in your head, maybe don't post an entire post regarding something I've said. Just admit I'm in your head. It's good for the soul.

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24 Dec 2019 15:05:31
It’s not hard to see why a Price/ Benintendi package would not get as much as Cano/ Diaz. In fact, the return would not be close. For one, the necessity to move the money, and also how much more valuable Diaz was than what Benny is. The return then hinges on how much money Boston is willing to eat - not Benintendi. For this trade to have its desired effect, I'd want Chicago to take a majority of it.
So, if Bloom doesn’t want to attach prospects, how else would they move $70+ million owed to a 35 year old pitcher? Probably attaching a player that they can easily replace and that their window doesn't depend on. Any way you design it, they're not getting top-end talent back.

Again, I’m allowed to come up with a trade that doesn’t have an absolute identical precedent to go off of. New, creative trades happen every year, hence the Cano trade last year. If moving Benintendi means they can keep Mookie Betts, I wouldn’t hesitate. The move doesn’t compromise 2020 and puts them in a much better position overall.

I guess you are thriving off the attention you are getting from me. You want me to admit it in writing for your own sanity. Are you OK? Hate to burst your little bubble, but the post was unfortunately not dedicated to you. I’ll refrain from directly including your username in the future because of what it clearly does to you emotionally. It was a sentance, not the whole post - sorry. I was commenting on my previous idea being backed up by a writer that I feel knows what’s he’s talking about given his past work at FanGraphs.

You weren’t the only one to disagree with this trade proposal. When you say something about how surplus values is not a robust system, and then I read article after article about how teams stress the importance of it, it’s funny. But then again, we’ve established that you aren’t really an expert on what exactly it is. The irony came when it was the exact Price/ Benny package you are insisting is horrible, even though it’s been frequently discussed.

With Keuchel and Mazara acquired, the idea makes a lot less sense as we speak. Plus, one of the players I had going back to Boston was already traded for a different underperforming corner OFer.

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24 Dec 2019 21:32:13
Well, you were trying to justify a silly trade that got 20+ downvotes the first time around you.

Since you've mentioned the surplus value "not robust" quote, go look up robust. You're acting like I'm saying it's a myth. I recognize that teams use labor economics to evaluate players and contracts. But I'm saying it's not this sure-fire system that every team follows with an agreed upon standard.

In any sense, there's a very real chance that Benintendi's "surplus value" to the Red Sox is far, far different than it is to the White Sox, for instance. That's not even a remotely controversial statement. So either you don't know what the word "robust" means, or you're just being an obnoxious blow-hard at this point.

"You weren’t the only one to disagree with this trade proposal". Well, if that isn't an understatement, I don't know what is. That post had over 20+ dislikes. I don't recall many posts getting that many, ever. So yeah, it's pretty evident that most people on this site disagreed with it. And just because a Fangraphs writers says, "sUrPlUs VaLuE sAyS sO" doesn't make it suddenly a good trade. There have been some monumentally wild takes even from Fangraphs' best writers. It doesn't make your point any more legitimate. That's called an "appeal to authority" argument and it doesn't work. Try again.

And finally, the point of you calling me out: you've done it now three times, at the very least. Three individual posts, not just "one sentence". Don't backtrack now and pretend like you're not that worked up over my existence on this site. You clearly think about me, otherwise you wouldn't keep posting about me.

I don't need to ask for attention. You offer quite a bit of it here. And it doesn't offend me, it actually creeps me out.

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25 Dec 2019 01:10:22
Would love to know the other posts where i’ve directly called you out. No one is worked up over you. Please stop giving yourself so much credit. You have this odd superiority complex and get extremely uncomfortable when someone questions your thinking. It’s crazy.

Analyzing surplus value is about as sure of a system as you’ll find with MLB transactions. You’ve wisened up over the past couple of weeks because you initially called it a farce, so congratulations for that. Maybe you can admit you were wildly off there.

Robust is strong, healthy, vigorous or in other words, a perfect way to describe it’s role in everyday MLB transactions.

When various other reputable baseball writers have acknowledged this idea for Boston, it’s not a horrible idea as you’ve described it. It doesn’t mean my trade with the return to Boston would exactly work, or if Boston would ultimately go through with it, but it does at least validate the idea - precedent or not. If Bloom and his staff value Benintendi to the point that potentially losing Betts in order to keep him around it worth it, then maybe his time there will be short-lived.

Hopefully one day I can post a trade that the all mighty Statbook will approve of.

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26 Dec 2019 13:48:16
My favorite was the one in which you thought I created a second account just to further disagree with you. You made an entire post accusing me of doing so, all because other people disagreed with you. But of course, I'M the one that can't handle being disagreed with. Need you be reminded that YOU literally posted an entire comment (this one) because people didn't agree with you and questioned your thinking. Go play with legos or something dude.

As far as the "robust" comment goes, it's not vigorous or strong at all. A. J. Preller has made trades and signings that go as far against the mold of "surplus value" and most executives that have been polled absolutely hate the moves and think they were bad. How is that evidence of a robust system? No two teams hold similar value, or even measure value the same. That's why I said, it's not as robust as you would like it to be.

Moral of the story: every indication (from a half dozen or so writers) has indicated that Bloom will not consider attaching top prospects or major leaguers to move David Price. We don't know how he values Benintendi. I'd imagine most of the "reputable baseball writers" who think they know are blowing smoke out of their you-know-where.

And NONE of this suggests that they either have to trade Benintendi or lose Mookie Betts. You're smart enough to not create such nonsensical false dichotomies. The Red Sox can do whatever they want. They have a filthy rich owner, and if they can't get rid of David Price or Nathan Eovaldi or J. D. Martinez without having to purge MORE depth, they'll just pay the luxury tax. Mookie Betts' future in Boston does not hinge on any of this. Good rule of thumb: if you have to use blatant logical fallacies to try and prove your point, you probably don't have a point.

And believe it not, I've agreed with you on several posts. You're just far too infatuated with me disagreeing with you and you seem to get off on it, so you probably don't notice. I can keep disagreeing with you if it makes you feel better. My guess is, it won't take much for myself, or others, to disagree with you, though.

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26 Dec 2019 22:53:56
Okay, so this is ridiculous. All of it. So let me say this from a third-party:

One, both of you need to stop. Thestatbook is a jerk and while I typically agree, there are ways to say it. Chisox, if you don't want people to disagree with you, don't call people out in your posts. Your Price trade to the White Sox wasn't that great. And that's okay.

Two, Chisox, it's a little ironic that you suggest Thestabook can't handle disagreement. This post wouldn't exist if you could handle it. You can't. And you felt that you needed to call people out. It's kind of petty.

Three, Fangraphs is not the end-all, be-all. It has taken a big step back when guys like Dave Cameron, Eno Sarris, and several others left. Fangraphs can be wrong, and very often, they ARE wrong.

Four, surplus value IS a real thing. But some people use it like it's some sort of gospel truth. Just when we think we know how teams value players, they prove us wrong. The Padres continue to show that none of us know how teams value players. It changes all the time and for any circumstance. Chisox, it's pretty easy to see why people would think it's annoying that others would treat it like some kind of gospel truth: because it isn't. If you go to that site Baseball Trade Values, the values, which are supposedly "grounded in reality" have been way off all winter. Teams certainly use surplus value, but you have absolutely zero clue how, and you probably shouldn't act so arrogant about it.

Five (and last), just move on. Both of you. I can see from your profiles a myriad of silly, dumb arguments that went well longer than needed. You don't need to accuse people of making up new profiles, of saying "you know nothing" or get in this pseudo-peeing contest with each other. Just move on.

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27 Dec 2019 13:44:24
Hahahaha, now I remember that post, Statbook. Funny thing about that profile was that one comment was the only activity on this site. It never posted or commented again. Fishy indeed, but glad to see you still are concerned about it. I was clearly trolling you. I'm sorry that I mentioned your name in this post. I didn't know you would take it like this. Names are mentioned in comments all the time. Relax.

Obviously no one likes the Hosmer signing in hindsight, but he’s literally a product of immense surplus value. They aren’t getting the big surplus value from him, but from all their studs they are paying league minimum so they can pay Hosmer closer to market value. But still, go look at Hosmer’s numbers in KC and remember that he was no slouch. They didn’t and probably couldn’t have forecasted his production since. I don’t know what else I can do for you, but you are still mightily struggling with this idea of how surplus value shapes transactions.

You say that polled executives hate Preller's moves after he went against surplus analysis (and has yet to win)? If he did do that, then I'm not surprised considering that's how the rest of them operate. So thanks for the additional evidence to my point.

You actually can’t make this up. In one paragraph, you talk about the indications of Bloom (which come via the insiders), then proceed to say they’re blowing smoke. So they either know what they’re talking about or not. Let’s try to at least stay consistent here. What was that about a logical fallacy? Good grief.

If Boston’s current payroll situation wasn’t an issue to extending Betts, then he would have already been locked up by now. They have to make changes - that's why Bloom was brought in. If they were just going to pay into the luxury tax unphased, then Dombrowski would still be employed. He was really good at that.

Players are valued like any other asset for any other company, like any other traded security. If you are so inclined, The Extra 2% by Jonah Keri has a great bit on how this works. Tampa Bay effectively took wall street's valuation strategies and brought them to MLB.

We've talked about how the budget constraint is the most significant to teams, some a lot more than others. How to put the best possible team on the field for the lowest possible price is how teams (and all firms) operate. In not saying they all have identical models to achieve this, but by all means, they try to get the players that give them the most production at a given price over what the market dictates that player is worth at that production level. By you guys saying that surplus value analysis is not "gospel truth", you are disagreeing with this.

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27 Dec 2019 15:18:37
"You actually can’t make this up. In one paragraph, you talk about the indications of Bloom (which come via the insiders), then proceed to say they’re blowing smoke. So they either know what they’re talking about or not. "

Well, when you can't read or comprehend, I can see how you'd come to this. Use your context clues and try again. Or has your 6th grade remedial English class not covered those yet?

I never said that the folks quoting front office people are blowing smoke. I'm saying that those who insist on Andrew Benintendi's surplus value (or David Price's for that matter) are. That's different. One is a direct quote that comes from reputable journalism, the other is pure conjecture and bored writers finding topics to earn their paycheck. I would hope you can see the difference.

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27 Dec 2019 15:39:06
And no, surplus value is not "gospel truth" you know why? BECAUSE NOT EVERY TEAM MEASURES VALUE THE EXACT SAME WAY. If I value a car at $10,000, and you think it's $1,000, the "value" is not gospel truth. It's entirely subjective. This isn't a difficult concept, nor is that statement remotely controversial. The White Sox value talent differently than the Rays, who value it differently than the Dodgers.

You keep coming back to that statement, and I don't think you understand what it means (par for the course for you), but no one is denying that labor economics is a thing. Literally no one has done that here. What I'm saying is that the actual "values" are merely perceived, and not grounded in reality, unless of course, you work for a major league team, which were that the case, you wouldn't be here.

I just don't find the "Player A is equal to Player B because surplus value" argument all that great. I think it's a pretty lazy approach to understanding actual player value, and a lazy approach to coming up with trades. Talent and value isn't linear. Yes, teams want to field the best team as economically as possible. And yes, they quantify it with a numeric value. But you and I don't know these and won't know these. Thus, the surplus value argument, as it comes from you or Fangraphs writers is really lazy and to assume it's gospel truth is bad. You don't even know if what you're saying is the truth.

We've seen the "sUrPlUs vAlUe" guys come in here and try to use it to justify outlandishly terrible trades. My favorite was the Rays fan who said that Brent Honeywell and Daniel Robertson had more surplus value than Kris Bryant, two years ago, and thus, the Cubs would be stupid to not take that trade.

It's not too much different than you saying Price and Benintendi for packing peanuts is a good trade trade. You're not actually engaging in a labor economics argument, nor a baseball argument. You're just trying to take a ubiquitous principle and demand we must apply it to your trade, because somehow, the numbers you've assumed match up. This is subjective, and you're trying to move the goalposts by saying, "well, every team engages in labor economics, thus my surplus value argument is correct. "

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27 Dec 2019 15:47:33
And finally, "If Boston’s current payroll situation wasn’t an issue to extending Betts, then he would have already been locked up by now. They have to make changes - that's why Bloom was brought in. If they were just going to pay into the luxury tax unphased, then Dombrowski would still be employed. He was really good at that. "

This is so misinformed, I don't know where to begin. Betts has reportedly turned at least one extension offer (8/ $200M) and likely others. Perhaps Mookie Betts wants to explore free agency, rather than be limited to negotiating with one team? It's worked out quite well for many guys over the years.

Also, of course they WANT to get under the luxury tax. That's why they brought in Bloom. But they aren't just going to purge all of their depth for the sake of getting under the luxury tax. They'll obviously try and shed some bad contracts and hope some team will just take it on. THAT was my point, and it seems, based on the comments of Bloom, that he's not willing to sacrifice depth or being in contention just to get under the luxury tax.

This isn't even conjecture. It's based on comments that have been corroborated by several journalists across several platforms. He's not adding in Benintendi on a Price trade just to get rid of David Price, unless of course the return (in terms of players acquired, not a goal achieved) he gets warrants such a trade.

I don't know if you like to twist and manipulate comments to make them more difficult just to try and throw confusion into the mix, or if you generally don't understand what people are saying. But these conversations won't go anywhere if you're doing either of those. So I suggest you either learn to read or learn to make good-faith arguments. This is a bad look for you.

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27 Dec 2019 16:10:34
I read that Jonah Keri book, Chi Sox. It's a great book. It's even better when you read it without a predisposition of thinking it proves what you're saying, but that's neither here nor there.

The point I think many here are making, or least I'm making, is that you can't just assume that every team thinks the same way, acts the same way, and has the same valuations. Obviously teams are trying to get production at cost efficiency. That's every business since the beginning of time (Also notice: baseball teams are owned by mostly successful businessmen, and many GMs have economics and math backgrounds) .

Yes, every team uses surplus value to an extent. Every business does as well. Pizza Hut works hard to shave one cent off the cost of their pizza boxes, because they can make more money by doing so. Everyone wants greater returns on their investments. None of that is false.

What's "false" is someone thinking that the numbers they came up with represent reality. You don't know what reality is here. You're making it up. Craig Edwards is making it up. You might have a fairly general sense of what those numbers are, but we simply don't know.

The Baseball Trade Value site valued Luis Urias at 66M. Fangraphs and other places valued him around the same. His return netted the Padres -45+ million (that's negative 45), based on the values everyone else had. So is Preller an idiot or does he value players differently? If this is gospel truth, you have to say he's wrong, in which the Padres owner should fire him for losing 45M in value in one trade.

The truth is, Preller is justifying this trade to his superiors because he has numbers that he and his team have developed regarding Grisham and Davies. Meanwhile, David Stearns is probably celebrating, because he's looking at Urias and Lauer's numbers that he and his team have developed.

If this was gospel truth, we wouldn't have bad trades. We wouldn't have winners and losers of trades. And baseball would be incredibly boring. And if "How to put the best possible team on the field for the lowest possible price is how teams (and all firms) operate", you wouldn't have teams like the Giants trading Bryan Reynolds for Andrew McCutchen, or trading for a 32 year old Evan Longoria. Teams operate in a multitude of ways. They think differently. When Bobby Evans was with the Giants, their mindset was to sell tickets, and so they made some stupid trades that got big name players in the ballpark, but did nothing for the future. Some teams leverage future talent for current production, other teams like the Dodgers refuse to trade their best prospects.

This isn't gospel truth, at all. It never was. It's incredibly arrogant for anyone to think so. But you don't really seem willing to entertain anyone else's ideas, and that's why you posted this to begin with. I'm now seeing that the problem isn't Thestatbook (although he's still a jerk), it's actually you, Chi Sox. You can't get over how smart you think you sound, and it's quite obnoxious.

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27 Dec 2019 20:22:51
Wow, a lot to address here. I appreciate your guy's persistence.

I think there's a lot of confusion about the points we are trying to make.

1. Statbook, you quoted Bloom as saying that he wouldn’t attach prospects to attach Bloom, not Benintendi - a plyer now entering his arb years. Whether they would or wouldn’t (or even should or shouldn’t) has come from the different writers. You can decide who’s reputable and who’s not, but I’m saying that regardless, we are basing our perception on what Chaim Bloom is willing to do on their word. Sometimes they have good insight on the topic, and yes, sometimes they are stirring something up just to be able to write an article. My initial post was to express the fact that someone else, from usually one of the more reputable sites (I mean we aren’t talking ESPN or Bleacher Report here), essentially shared an idea of mine that you said was horrible to even fathom. I would say that’s extreme. Trading a league average hitter from Boston’s lineup is not “purging all of their depth. ” C’mon now.

2. Here’s my whole point on surplus value. Teams try to create a window of sustainable contention by building a core of prospects that will all graduate to the big leagues around the same time. When this happens and those players begin to produce well above their pre-arb and even arb salaries, they get a bunch of surplus from these players. Once this core is realized, it give the clubs the ability to spend on the premium talent that the free agent market has to offer. The problem is that this talent has to be purchased at market value, which is expensive. Clubs can’t build a successful roster without this surplus value because they just can’t afford it.

A great example of this is the LA Angels. They might have the best player in the history of the game, another top-5 player in baseball, and one of the greatest players of the 2000s decade, and they may not come close to a playoff berth. The dominant model, as the last couple of WS winners have showed us, is to develop your core and then supplement it with free agents, not vice versa. What ever you want to call it - the dominant model, gospel truth, whatever. It’s the reality of the sport. Accumulation of surplus value is what front offices attempt to do with every transaction. The big moves with less surplus value are made possible by the other rostered players who DO have a lot of surplus value. Again, this is with every team's personalized model applied.

Statbook, your car example - You value the car at $10,000 while I only value it at $1,000 because either a. ) your budget constraint is a lot less significant than mine so your can afford to pay more to ensure your acquisition, or b. ) your current necessity for the car is much more than mine. Option (a) is why the A’s lost Jason Giambi to the Yankees in 2002, and option (b) is why we see Houston take on Grienke and why the Cubs traded Gleyber Torres for a half season of Chapman. A lock down closer is much more valuable to a team on the brink of a title than on a middling, .500 team. No, our values are not equal, but the idea of surplus value still holds. In either option, whatever your individual valuation model is, it has told you that out-bidding me by $9,000 is a worth-while investment because you are still getting surplus from it. You can justify that you are better off now than you were prior to purchasing the car.

I’ve said numerous times that teams don’t have the same surplus values for the same players. This is why the surplus value calculators don’t work for that TB/ Cubs trade proposal, statbook. They assume that everyone has the same valuation (notice I’m not saying the same surplus valuation) of every player therefore all one has to do is match up the numbers. I’m not advocating for that in the slightest.

thedudeabides, the Giants tried to patch together another title with a core that they thought could still produce. They hoped Longoria and Cutch would be similar to the kind of players they were in TB and Pittsburgh, but it largely wasn’t the case. Selling tickets is undoubtedly part of team's processes, which leads me to my previous point that actually marginal revenue product (MRP) is a much more encompassing way to calculate surplus value. While a player’s WAR (as the proxy for on-field production) goes a long way in determining their MRP, it shouldn’t be the only thing that goes into surplus value, which I’m assuming is the case for these calculators. Generating ticket revenue, marketing ability, etc. all go into a good surplus value calculation - again, given what a team could pay for on the open market for similar MRP. thedudeabides, I hope this shows you that i’m not advocating for the surplus value calculators, so I really don’t care what the Baseball Trade Value site said or didn’t say. I’ve already been down this road of explanation with statbook. For his sake, I’m not sure if it was retained or not.

3. Statbook, you know that extension offer to Betts is BS and down right embarrassing. They knew he would instantly turn it down. To this point, it appears that the offer was the type of “well, we tried” offer, like what the Nats offered Harper. If he turned down the 10/ $300-350 offer that he deserves playing in a huge market, then it’s a different story, but there has been no indication of that. My point is that Boston needs to put themselves in the position financially to offer Betts the extension that he can’t refuse. At a certain point, there’s a risk aversion factor for Betts that he’ll give into, no matter how much he thinks he wants to test free agency. Even though we can see Betts produce 6-WAR in his sleep, why take the gamble for an extra 5-10% or with the uncertainties that can happen over a full season if this offer is on the table from Boston? People have different preferences, but this seems like a dumb gamble. Also, If the extension is offered and signed before shedding payroll, then it takes away any leverage that Boston would have because others know there’s only so much money that they are willing to flush down the drain in luxury taxes.

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28 Dec 2019 02:48:17
Regarding surplus valuation, this is the point I'm making, and I think a lot of people make. It's just exceedingly lazy. And it's largely a farce.

Obviously, labor economics is a thing. Again, no one here has argued against it. But the fact that almost zero teams value players, contracts, or trades the same shows why it isn't this "gospel truth" or all that robust. It's extremely fluid and entirely subjective.

So arguing "value" is only effective if you know how teams actually value a player. You don't, so I think it's a pretty silly argument to assert that because you think his value is x, then the team must, and thus, the trade is fair. My car example was clearly overthought by you. I was simply saying that I can put whatever value I wish and that's the "value". So if I think Andrew Benintendi is worth Gleyber Torres, but you think he's not, that's fine, but don't get worked up when people don't agree with the value.

Chaim Bloom clearly values the very minimal depth they have. And yes, "Trading a league average hitter from Boston’s lineup is “purging all of their depth"' The Red Sox have no other viable options. Their only other OF option is Marcus Wilson, a recent addition to the 40-man roster. So it's either trade from the putrid farm system they have, or spend more than 5M on a league-average hitter (who probably has a far worse ceiling than Benintendi) . Neither of those are ideal.

And again, the point with Mookie Betts is that he's been pretty set on FA. Multiple comments he has made have referenced his looking forward to FA. He doesn't seem like a guy wanting to limit himself to negotiating with one team. I'd imagine the Red Sox know this as well (as do teams thinking about trading for him) .

Nobody envies Boston's position, obviously. But I simply think that the addition of Benintendi is more of a thought exercise than it is something grounded in reality. It makes literally zero sense to add Benintendi to get rid of Price's contract, regardless of how you feel about him. I still think the Red Sox can get rid of Price if they take on 30-45M of his salary. Or, again, they'll just pay the luxury tax and deal with it in another 12 months. They are not required to just give away players and ruin their ever-shrinking window of contention just to get rid of Price or Eovaldi.

Also, relevant to this conversation: the current Collective Bargaining Agreement ends in 2021. There's a lot of discussion surrounding the luxury tax's addition in the new CBA, so it very well could go away. Could Boston take the gamble that they won't have to worry about it after 2021 and just compete? There seems to be some validity that they would take that chance.

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05 Dec 2019 19:49:12
Curious what folks think about Chris Archer's value. I'm a Phillies fan and think rounding out he rotation with him as the #4 and being able to shift Arietta to #5 could have some benefits. I would love the Phils to be able to craft some kind of deal where they could hook Archer as a reclamation project for Bryan Price and possibly fetch Taillon also. Knowing he's out for 2020, he could be a good gamble if he can bounce back. Might be unlikely being this is his second TJ surgery, but I'd like to see Klentak get creative here. Thoughts?

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06 Dec 2019 19:57:52
Neither Archer nor Taillon will fetch much from teams. The Pirates would be better off seeing what happens than to sell low, especially on Archer.

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