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  • Honus Wagner Rules
    replied
    Originally posted by GiambiJuice View Post

    Your comparison of Strasburg to Madison Bumgarner reminds me of this fascinating blog post from Joe Posnanski a couple months ago:

    I get into verbal fights with other Giant fans over MadBum. We all LOVE MadBum but he is clearly in decline. If he wants a contract over 3 years I say let him sign with some other team. But many of my fellow Giants fans scream, "But it's MadBum! He is a Giants for life!" Apparently they do not understand that the 2010-2016 MadBum is gone never to return.

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  • Honus Wagner Rules
    replied
    Originally posted by bluesky5 View Post
    In any other era he'd be Bob Feller or Nolan Ryan. But modern baseball made sure he's just been mediocre.
    Huh? Rapid Robert and the Ryan Express were legendary for being workhorses extraordinaires. Strasburg not so much. I'm still blown away by Feller's workload before he went off to fight in WW II.

    Leave a comment:


  • GiambiJuice
    replied
    Originally posted by bluesky5 View Post
    In any other era he'd be Bob Feller or Nolan Ryan. But modern baseball made sure he's just been mediocre.
    Minus 125 innings.

    Leave a comment:


  • bluesky5
    replied
    In any other era he'd be Bob Feller or Nolan Ryan. But modern baseball made sure he's just been mediocre.

    Leave a comment:


  • GiambiJuice
    replied
    Originally posted by lyrical View Post
    Strasburg’s case is somewhat similar to Bumgarner’s (32.5 pitching WAR, 119 wins, 3.13 ERA, 1.11 WHIP to Strasburg’s 32.6 pitching WAR, 112 W, 3.17 ERA, 1.09 WHIP), although MB has been more durable with a bunch of 200 IP seasons and has more losses because the Giants haven’t been good lately and his ERA+ is at 120 to Strasburg’s 130 due to park adjustments. They both have had about half of a HOF career, handful of ASGs, great postseason work, but lacking a definitive peak Cy Young level season, except Strasburg seems to be trending up while Bumgarner has been trending down.

    It’s possible Strasburg has turned a corner since changing his offseason training regimen last year and will be able to maintain his health better in the future, if that’s indeed the case I like his chances to finally get that Cy Young and compile a HOF caliber career. Still a big IF though given his history.

    Strasburg’s Hall chances as evaluated by Cooperstown cred: https://www.cooperstowncred.com/hall...t-miss-phenom/
    Your comparison of Strasburg to Madison Bumgarner reminds me of this fascinating blog post from Joe Posnanski a couple months ago:

    The Tale of Two Salaries

    A friend of mine pointed out this rather fascinating comparison:

    Pitcher A (age 30): 119-91, 3.11 ERA, 121 ERA+, 4.84 K/W, 1.109 WHIP, 32.4/31.2 WAR

    Pitcher B (age 31): 110-57, 3.18 ERA, 130 ERA+, 5.00 K/W, 1.087 WHIP, 31.5/36.3 WAR

    Now, from that, you certainly could argue that Pitcher B is slightly better than Pitcher A overall. But I would say that difference is more than made up with this fact: Pitcher A is one of the greatest postseason pitchers in baseball history while Pitcher B (though he has been fantastic in three postseason starts) is most famous for one year of NOT pitching in the postseason.

    And if ya don’t know, now ya know, Mr. President:

    Pitcher A is Madison Bumgarner.

    Pitcher B is Stephen Strasburg.

    OK, so let’s get to the money, right? The headline talked about money.

    Madison Bumgarner has made $57 million in his career and, like it or not, is about to go into one of the worst free agent climates in forever.

    Strasburg, meanwhile, has made double that, $110 million and he has another guaranteed $100 million coming his way, and he has a choice whether or not to double down and become a free agent.

    Now, let’s stipulate up front that we’re talking about cartoon bags of money. Nobody is going to to think that someone who has made $57 million and will undoubtedly make millions more is a charity case. The point here is not to cry “poor Maddy.”

    No, the point is: How does this happen? How in the world did Stephen Strasburg make twice as much money than Madison Bumgarner with 100 million guaranteed dollars ahead? I mean, forget the last couple of years because they had already made their financial beds before those years. Look at their paths:

    They were both high first-round picks and mega prospects. They both made their first big marks in 2010 — Strasburg came up that year and was a brief phenomenon before blowing out his arm, Bumgarner pitched in his first World Series game at age 20 and threw eight shutout innings.

    In 2011, Bumgarner pitched well enough to received Cy Young votes. Strasburg missed almost the whole year.

    In 2012, Strasburg returned from injury and pitched well enough to make the All-Star team. Bumgarner pitched in his second World Series game and pitched brilliantly again.

    In 2013, Bumgarner made the All-Star team and finished ninth in the Cy Young voting. Strasburg pitched better than his 8-9 record indicated.

    In 2014, Strasburg led the league in strikeouts. Bumgarner, meanwhile, won the World Series almost singlehandedly. He was named Sports Illustrated’s Sports Person of the Year.

    In 2015, Strasburg got hurt again. Bumgarner went 18-9 and finished sixth in the Cy Young voting.

    In 2016, Strasburg got hurt again. Bumgarner finished fourth in the Cy Young voting.

    So you tell me how in the world Strasburg did so much better financially?

    Let’s break it down. Strasburg got a $7.5 million signing bonus as the first pick in the draft (and one of the greatest pitching prospects in baseball history) and officially signed for a four-year, $15.1 million deal that took him through 2012.

    Bumgarner did get a not-insubstantial $2 million signing bonus, but he played for basically the minimum after that. Through 2012, he was already $12 million in the hole, having made just $3 million or so total.

    Then Bumgarner, in an effort to capitalize on his youthful success, signed what he hoped was a good deal with the Giants. It was meant to be one of those “both sides win” sort of deals, where the player gets security and up front money and the team pays some financial maneuverability (hint: They pay less). The deal was five years, $35 million PLUS two option years for the team.

    Those team option years are absolutely brutal, and it’s astounding that agents still give them away.

    Anyway, the deal was sold as a REWARD by the Giants.

    It was not a reward. Strasburg went year to year instead. And, even though he was oft-injured, he ended up making more money every single year than Bumgarner. So much for security.

    Then, after the 2016 season — with Bumgarner stuck for three more years at well-below market rate — Strasburg signed a seven-year, $175 million deal with the Nationals, one that allows him to opt out after this year or 2020 if he sees more money out there to be had. And, considering he’s putting up a Cy Young caliber season, there very well might be more money out there for him.

    Bumgarner, meanwhile, heads into the an uncertain free agent fate. He’s having an OK season but it seems eerily similar to the year Dallas Keuchel had before going into free agency last year. Keuchel then turned down a one-year qualifying offer (as Bumgarner is likely to do) and sat around and watched as teams passed him over. He eventually signed a one-year prorated deal with Atlanta for $13 million.

    That’s the nightmare scenario Bumgarner faces.

    So what’s the difference?

    I don’t think it’s oversimplifying things to say that the difference, plainly, is Scott Boras.

    This is not to say Boras is perfect — he doesn’t win for every player — but his record with Strasburg is quite remarkable. When Strasburg was drafted. Boras took negotiations down to literally the final minute before getting a record-breaking deal. In 2012, when Strasburg’s health was vulnerable after Tommy John surgery, Boras made sure Strasburg did not pitch in the playoffs. In the following years, Boras made sure to fight for every dollar for his client. When Strasburg was about to head into free agency, Boras read the tea leaves, saw how things were going, and Strasburg signed that huge $175 million extension with the opt-out clauses.

    Bumgarner, meanwhile, is with his third different agency since he signed that now-regrettable extension with the Giants.

    I don’t think there’s another sport where two terrific players as similar in value as MadBum and Stras can make such wildly different salaries. Baseball fans love to hate on Scott Boras — and I sense Boras loves to be hated in that way — but you have to say that with baseball owners making so much money (and with most fans utterly unmoved by players’ natural desire to make more money) the players deserve a fighter to make sure they get their piece of the pie.

    When it comes to Scott Boras, I can’t help but think about the Danny DeVito line in Other People’s Money: “I’m not your best friend. I’m your ONLY friend.”

    Leave a comment:


  • lyrical
    replied
    Strasburg’s case is somewhat similar to Bumgarner’s (32.5 pitching WAR, 119 wins, 3.13 ERA, 1.11 WHIP to Strasburg’s 32.6 pitching WAR, 112 W, 3.17 ERA, 1.09 WHIP), although MB has been more durable with a bunch of 200 IP seasons and has more losses because the Giants haven’t been good lately and his ERA+ is at 120 to Strasburg’s 130 due to park adjustments. They both have had about half of a HOF career, handful of ASGs, great postseason work, but lacking a definitive peak Cy Young level season, except Strasburg seems to be trending up while Bumgarner has been trending down.

    It’s possible Strasburg has turned a corner since changing his offseason training regimen last year and will be able to maintain his health better in the future, if that’s indeed the case I like his chances to finally get that Cy Young and compile a HOF caliber career. Still a big IF though given his history.

    Strasburg’s Hall chances as evaluated by Cooperstown cred: https://www.cooperstowncred.com/hall...t-miss-phenom/

    Leave a comment:


  • dgarza
    replied
    Originally posted by Chadwick View Post
    You are absolutely correct.

    I'm not going to haggle over any one of Puckett's Gold Gloves. The fact is he missed in a couple of years where he probably deserved one and he certainly won a good many that he likely didn't deserve. (The individual years/results don't really change the accuracy of that statement.)

    You're right that Fielding Percentage, Assists, Errors, Putouts and Double Plays were about it for the standard fielding stats at that time, but Range Factor had been around a few years and was available for those interested in looking. Heck, it sure was easy enough to calculate on one's own. There's no way to no so what I'm about to assert is just a guess, but I'd wager a majority of the Gold Glove voters - managers and coaches specifically - did not even bother looking at those numbers that were available. They went on their gut, their eyeballs, the scuttlebutt, etc. The use of statistics when evaluating electoral choices isn't unique to BBWAA members, certainly, but I'll bet its far more common among those voters than among polls of players, managers or coaches.
    And I'd bet a good number of those polled for GG awards aren't looking at the entire defensive package either. There's probably a few who have only judged a player on how good they thought they were the glove (meaning catching the ball) and don't really factor in what kind of arm the player has (meaning throwing the ball), especially when it comes to OFers.

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  • Chadwick
    replied
    Originally posted by dgarza View Post
    Additionally...
    Voters were also likely going off stats they had available at the time, which would not always support the dWAR or Fielding Runs numbers. For example, in 1989, Puckett had a -0.1 dWAR and -4 Runs Fielding. But nobody knew that in 1989.
    What did the voters see? They saw a CF who lead AL CFers in Assists and Putouts, and was 2nd in Fielding %. If they had access to Range Factor back then, they could have seen that he lead in RF/9 and RF/G. That doesn't look like a bad GG pick to me in 1989.
    You are absolutely correct.

    I'm not going to haggle over any one of Puckett's Gold Gloves. The fact is he missed in a couple of years where he probably deserved one and he certainly won a good many that he likely didn't deserve. (The individual years/results don't really change the accuracy of that statement.)

    You're right that Fielding Percentage, Assists, Errors, Putouts and Double Plays were about it for the standard fielding stats at that time, but Range Factor had been around a few years and was available for those interested in looking. Heck, it sure was easy enough to calculate on one's own. There's no way to no so what I'm about to assert is just a guess, but I'd wager a majority of the Gold Glove voters - managers and coaches specifically - did not even bother looking at those numbers that were available. They went on their gut, their eyeballs, the scuttlebutt, etc. The use of statistics when evaluating electoral choices isn't unique to BBWAA members, certainly, but I'll bet its far more common among those voters than among polls of players, managers or coaches.

    Leave a comment:


  • willshad
    replied
    Originally posted by Chadwick View Post
    Re: Strasburg

    His only hope for election is a case built on career production. His peak hasn't been high enough and it's even less likely at this age that he'll set a new peak level than that he'll stay healthy for another decade.
    His career path thus far looks sort of similar to Max Scherzer's. Mad Max wasn't that great up until age 28, but then he picked it up a couple notches. Strasburg is actually a bit better than Scherzer was through age 30. Of course Scherzer followed that up with two CY awards and a second place finish the next three seasons; I'm not saying that Strasburg will do that, but at least it shows it is quite possible he is peaking now.
    Last edited by willshad; 10-31-2019, 08:37 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • dgarza
    replied
    Originally posted by Chadwick View Post


    Finally, the fact that Puckett received awards in years immediately following his fantastic defensive performances (in which he initially established his reputation as a great defender), is as likely proof that Gold Glove voters were at least going off the man's reputation - as opposed to his specific performance that season - as it is that "WAR" (not the voters) might be off in its assessment.
    Additionally...
    Voters were also likely going off stats they had available at the time, which would not always support the dWAR or Fielding Runs numbers. For example, in 1989, Puckett had a -0.1 dWAR and -4 Runs Fielding. But nobody knew that in 1989.
    What did the voters see? They saw a CF who lead AL CFers in Assists and Putouts, and was 2nd in Fielding %. If they had access to Range Factor back then, they could have seen that he lead in RF/9 and RF/G. That doesn't look like a bad GG pick to me in 1989.


    Leave a comment:


  • Chadwick
    replied
    Re: Strasburg

    His only hope for election is a case built on career production. His peak hasn't been high enough and it's even less likely at this age that he'll set a new peak level than that he'll stay healthy for another decade.

    Leave a comment:


  • Chadwick
    replied
    Here are the top 5 each year in fielding component for rWAR for the relevant years (when Puckett started in CF):

    1984 – Kirby Puckett (3.1), Chet Lemon (2.0), Lloyd Moseby (2.0), Gary Ward (1.5), Gary Pettis (0.8)
    1985 – Rickey Henderson (1.3), Gary Pettis (1.2), Kirby Puckett (0.9), Chet Lemon (0.9), John Shelby (0.7)
    1986 – Gary Pettis (2.2), Dwayne Murphy (1.7), Chet Lemon (1.4), Rickey Henderson (0.6), Daryl Boston (0.6)
    1987 – Gary Pettis (1.5), Ken Williams (0.8), Rickey Henderson (0.8), Bill Bean (0.7), Daryl Boston (0.4)
    1988 – Devon White (1.1), Gary Pettis (1.1), Dave Henderson (1.0), Brady Anderson (0.8), Kirby Puckett (0.7)
    1989 – Devon White (2.4), Dave Henderson (1.9), Randy Kutcher (1.1), Cecil Espy (0.7), Mike Devereaux (0.6)
    1990 – Roberto Kelly (2.2), Mitch Webster (1.8), Dave Henderson (1.2), Mookie Wilson (0.6), Ken Williams (0.5)
    1991 – Devon White (1.8), Lance Johnson (1.8), Mike Devereaux (1.6), Milt Cuyler (1.5), Steve Lyons (1.0)
    1992 – Devon White (3.5), Kenny Lofton (1.9), Lance Johnson (1.5), Gary Pettis (0.9), Mike Devereaux (0.7)
    1993 – Kenny Lofton (1.7), Lance Johnson (1.7), Devon White (1.6), Ken Griffey (0.6), Milt Cuyler (0.6)

    You’ll notice several things here:

    1 – No individual stays at the top of this list for long. Center field is where the best defensive outfielders go and it’s dominated by younger players, as one would expect, given the importance of speed/range.

    2 – Seldom are the top defenders more than marginally better than the average defenders at the position. You see above a top 5 for 10 straight seasons, a total of 50 individuals. Only two of those 50 (4%) put up 3.0 dWAR, only 7 (35%) had 2.0; only 30 (60%) were 1.0 WAR above an average centerfielder in terms of defensive output. The difference between an average defensive CF (which is already a great fielder) and a great defensive CF isn’t nearly as great as, say, the difference between a great hitter and an average hitter.

    3 – The other names on this list were highly thought of as defensive players, by reputation. Ken Griffey Jr. won 10 Gold Gloves. Devon White won 7. Gary Pettis won 5. Kenny Lofton won 4.

    Puckett’s 6 Gold Glove Awards came, by the way, in the following seasons:

    1986 (Pettis and Jesse Barfield also won)
    1987 (Dave Winfield and Barfield also won)
    1988 (Pettis and White also won)
    1989 (Pettis and White also won)
    1991 (White and Griffey also won)
    1992 (White and Griffey also won)

    Defensive WAR components in other systems may order players differently, but most will have mostly the same names at or near the top. It’s possible, perhaps probable, that all of Puckett’s Gold Gloves were at least awarded because he hit well at center and was a solid defender there after having been an outstanding one. It’s the same reason Ken Griffey would win at least a few of his.

    Another, perhaps more unfair reason is that Gold Glove voters made no distinction between left fielders, center fielders and right fielders during most of the award’s history, thus seeing that a vastly disproportionate number of outfield Gold Glove Awards went to center fielders.

    Your contention that “WAR” is wrong because you mistakenly think it says “Puckett sucks” on defense and because it challenges whether he deserved 6 Gold Glove Awards (which it does) is a false premise with faulty logic. Perhaps you should spend more time looking at things in context and less hasty to attack something you don’t understand.

    How is “WAR” and Rfield so accurate with these other guys, but we’ve got to throw the baby out with the bathwater just because you’re as blind to Kirby’s late-20s decline in the field. Is it surprising that an extremely popular player with a great bat who had been a stellar fielder just years earlier would benefit from that reputation despite diminished performance due (presumably) to his weight gain.

    On May 4, 1986 in The Orlando Sentinel, Brian Schmidtz wrote the following:

    “Kirby Puckett has caused almost as many nervous breakdowns among American League pitching staffs this season as he did the day he stepped on a scale for Minnesota Twins officials in February at Tinker Field.

    “Puckett sent trainers scrambling to revive alarmed Manager Ray Miller when he weighed in at a fleshy 212 pounds. Apparently on the Tommy Lasorda Diet, Puckett gained a whopping 17 pounds during the winter, give or take a few doughnuts.

    “The problem was that 212 pounds on the stocky, 5-foot-8 Puckett made him look more like a Saturday night bowler than a ball-hawking center fielder. Miller was worried that the extra set of Samsonite Puckett was carrying around would affect Kirby’s speed….”

    Heck, fellow sportswriter Jim Murray quipped that Puckett had become a “cantaloupe with legs”.

    Perhaps “WAR” is accurately reflecting Puckett’s performance and that the Gold Glove voters were not?

    Leave a comment:


  • Chadwick
    replied
    Originally posted by willshad View Post

    And WAR is almost certainly not giving Kirby enough credit for his defense. He has -14 Rfield despite winning six gold gloves.
    First of all, "WAR" in this context is Baseball-Reference's version (rWAR or bWAR if you will). Secondly, dWAR is more appropriate than merely Rfield if you're talking about how "WAR" measures his defense. Puckett's dWAR on BR is -0.3, which means he was basically average.

    Thirdly, this is a career number, which means it includes Puckett's defense throughout his career. Essentially, the metric is saying that Puckett was roughly average (on average) throughout his MLB career, which lasted from age 24-35. That's no slight on a guy who managed to stay in center until he reached his mid-thirties.

    Finally, the metric shows Puckett to have been an outstanding fielder early in his MLB career, but that he dropped to roughly average from his prime years forward.

    In other words, that's a reasonable assessment of any defensive center fielder. It accounts for the change in performance over the player's career arc.

    The metric demonstrates nuance in how it explains Puckett, as contrasted to your statement. You're looking at cumulative defensive value and comparing it to a handful of awards for specific individual seasons, for example.

    Finally, the fact that Puckett received awards in years immediately following his fantastic defensive performances (in which he initially established his reputation as a great defender), is as likely proof that Gold Glove voters were at least going off the man's reputation - as opposed to his specific performance that season - as it is that "WAR" (not the voters) might be off in its assessment.

    Your statement is based on the assumption that the voters accurately assessed Puckett's performance and that "WAR" did not. That's an assumption - your assumption; it is not a fact.

    Leave a comment:


  • willshad
    replied
    Originally posted by dgarza View Post
    51 WAR in Puckett's 12 seasons from 1984-1995 sandwiches him between HOFers Tim Raines and Alan Trammell. That's definitely in HOF territory.
    Plus hits 2300+ hits in just 12 seasons is like what Pete Rose was doing in his first 12 years or so. That was more hits than Gwynn or Boggs had in that time period.
    Puckett had the 3rd highest BA for players with 1000+ games.
    2nd in RBIs, 3rd in doubles, 5th in runs.
    10x AS, 9x MVP candidate, 53rd in all time MVP shares
    And WAR is almost certainly not giving Kirby enough credit for his defense. He has -14 Rfield despite winning six gold gloves.

    Leave a comment:


  • Cougar
    replied
    Originally posted by lyrical View Post
    Somehow Stephen Strasburg does not appear to have a thread here.
    This is a small miracle indeed.

    Where have you gone, Cowtipper?

    Leave a comment:

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