What is your opinion of the A.J. Pierzynski signing?
MJH on accountability
Because every fledgling forum needs some interesting fodder:
1. The trade value calculator created by Sky Kalkman -- and popularized by Dave Cameron, and used by myself in some of the analysis -- here is very nice, and I think its output makes a lot of real-world sense. Sometimes.
However, somebody pointed something out in response to that Roy Oswalt trade value breakdown I wrote a month or two ago: a true-talent 1 WAR player signed at around $4.5 million -- which has generally proven the market value of one win over the last few seasons, although it's been closer to $4 million in 2010 -- has the same surplus value as a 5 WAR player signed at $22.5 million: zero. Kalkman explains:
You'll see the total cost of the contract, total expectel production (WAR) provided by the player, total expected free agent value of the player, and the total net value of the player's contract (that's the number in the little box). Zero means a player has zero trade value (team context aside) because you could supply the same amount of production by signing a free agent at the going free agent rate without giving up anything else. Positive numbers are good. Negative numbers mean a team should have to include something of positive value in order to get another team to take the player.
When Sky says "team context," I presume he's referring to positional need/scarcity ... for example, acquiring a 4 WAR, $18 million, zero-surplus value second baseman may not make tremendous sense if you already have a 3.5 WAR second baseman in house. But what I've been thinking about is whether a market-value 1 WAR player should have the same surplus value -- zero -- relative to a market-value 4 WAR player. Should the 4 WAR player receive some sort of trade-value bonus because he's more scarce than a 1 WAR player, and because you're better off the more WAR you can compress into a single roster spot?
2. Kalkman's trade value calculator employs prospect trade values calculated by Victor Wang, who used John Sickels' prospect grades for all non-top 100 prospects in baseball. This is because Sickels seems to be the only guy out there who goes a step beyond mere numerical prospect rankings, which are problematic for trade-value purposes because, hey, the Rangers' No. 10 prospect obviously has more trade value than the Astros' No. 10 prospect. Sickels' letter-grading method allows you to compare mid-range prospects between farm systems far more easily than any other set of rankings out there.
But what if you don't trust Sickels' prospect rankings? (Jason Parks has publicly voiced his disapproval of Sickels' methods before.) What if you want to argue that Justin Smoak was a top-10 positional prospect in baseball when he was traded rather than being in the No. 11-25 range (which at least one writer did somewhere, though his name eludes me at the moment), which has the effect of jacking his trade value by $11.4 million and making the Cliff Lee trade look decidedly worse for Texas? The sensitivity here is extreme, and I think everyone would do well to not take any of this early trade-value analysis as gospel. We're headed in the right direction here, but we still have a very long way to go.
Not to sound all Joe Morgany here, but this is why people don't take stat-heads seriously. By all accounts, 1B is a position that is easily replaceable, no?
And while the market value for a Beavan could be around 2.3 million, he wasn't worth that in a Rangers uniform. By all accounts, his ceiling is a 3rd starter, and was probably going to be a middle reliever if he were to make in to the show. We already have an abundance of reliever prospects.
I'm going to be honest, Joey. Some of the first question confused me. I still have trouble understanding how slugging percentage is calculated. But to call the deal a big win for Seattle seems really stupid to me. What if Texas wins a World Series, and loses Cliff Lee. Does that make it a win? It's far too early to let some formula tell us who won in the end.
By all accounts, his ceiling is a 3rd starter, and was probably going to be a middle reliever if he were to make in to the show.
I don't think that's accurate. I think Beavan is widely viewed as somebody who's going to chew up 160-plus innings per season, and probably do so while posting a FIP in the high-4.00s to low-5.00s.
I understand the stat of FIP Joey, but is a low 5.00 FIP good? Sorry, some of the stuff just goes over my head. That's the way my brain go.
Wait, so Randy Johnson had a negative FIP? Huh?
I understand the stat of FIP Joey, but is a low 5.00 FIP good?
Not especially. It's around the line delineating the separation between a No. 4 and a No. 5 starter. But that has value over 160-plus innings. It's better than going out and throwing John Wasdin at somebody for 100 innings.
Not to get extremely off-topic here, but I think Beavan's ceiling is probably a #4 starter while his floor is likely that of a swing man (long relief/spot starts). He's very likely to make it to the majors and stay there. That may have more value that someone who has a ceiling of a #2 starter or front line closer with a floor of never making it past AA (Wilmer Font perhaps?).
As far as the Saber-related parts of the question, I think that cramming more WAR into one roster spot should account for a little more (value-wise) than it does. I also have an issue with Sickels' rankings. It would be nice to standarize a rankings system so that an average score could be used comprising the rankings from several sources. I think the AOFP grades could be quite useful.
I think the answer to your first question all depends on team context. A team 20 games out at the deadline would have a lower value for the 22 million 4 WAR player than the 4.5 mil 1 WAR player because they are going to have to write the 22 million dollar check and it's not going to make a difference in whether they make it to the playoffs or not. However at the start of the season or for a team in contention, the 4 WAR player has greater value than the 1 WAR because there is a greater probability that those extra wins unlocks the door to the promised land a.k.a playoffs. That's my two cents.
I also have an issue with Sickels' rankings. It would be nice to standarize a rankings system so that an average score could be used comprising the rankings from several sources. I think the AOFP grades could be quite useful.
I wonder how much micro-level scouting of this sort is done by guys like Callis and/or Law. I know Law does plenty of scouting; what I don't know is whether he also does OFP/AOFP grades, and whether those are standard in all scouting reports but he simply omits them because people don't really understand what they mean.
As far as KG, he's said several times that he's not a scout, so I wouldn't look to him for scouting info that granular anyway. And I think Jake's on the right track in his thought. I think it's a combination of scarcity and context.
Joey, most scouts don't post grades, but pre-draft scouting reports by Keith Law and Jason Grey had tool-based grades. They just didn't have a composite score.
Here was Luke Jackson: http://insider.espn.go.com/mlb/draft/player/_/id/18970/luke-jacksonKellin Deglan: http://insider.espn.go.com/mlb/draft/player/_/id/18924/kellin-deglanCody Buckel: http://insider.espn.go.com/mlb/draft/player/_/id/18952/cody-buckel
Right, I know about those. I was solely interested in OFP/AOFP scores, which I've never seen from Grey/Churchill/Law.
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