A very quick look at the Reds/Pirates game tonight.
Reds starter Johnny Cueto, this season, had a .207 eqa against left-handed hitters and a .234 eqa against righties. He is himself a RH.
Russell Martin, the Pirates catcher, is right-handed, and hit for a .275 eqa against right-handed pitchers.
Now, if a hitter with a .275 eqa goes against a pitcher who allows a .234 eqa, the expected eqa of the result should be roughly (275*234 / 260), or .248. This value is consistent with converting each of the eqas into winning percentages, letting them go head to head with the log5 method, and converting back into an eqa.
Repeating for the whole Pirate roster
C Martin (R) .275v234 = .248
1b Morneau (L) .297v207 = .236
2B Walker (S) .296v207 = .236
SS Mercer (R) .247×234 = .222
3B Alvarez(L) .299v.207 = .238
LF Marte (R) .278v234 = .250
CF McCutcheon (R) .322v234 = .290
RF Byrd (R) .291v234 = .262
The average value, for the whole Pirate team, is .249; eqas don’t sum linearly, they sum by the 2.5 power. That’s not a big deal here (a straight mean is .248), but will be for the opposite calculation.
Doing the same thing for the Reds against Francisco Liriano is trickier, because his EQA against lefties is so low as to be below zero. The eqa is low enough that a lineup of average hitters would be better off without that hitter in it, even if they got fewer chances as a result. Using an alternate form of the eqr equation, one that can’t go sub-zero, yields an eqa of .132. Against righties , he’s got a decidedly pedestrian .265 eqa allowed.
C Hanigan (R) 225v265 = 229
1b Votto (L) 303v132 = 154
2b Phillips (R) 271v265 = 276
SS Cozart (R) 245v265 = 250
3B Frazier (R) 278v265 = 283
LF Ludwick (R) 278v265 = 283
CF Choo (L) 243v132 = 123
RF Bruce (L) 262v132 = 133
The average value here works out to a .230 eqa when using the 2.5 power rule, quite a bit higher than the .216 you’d get from a straight average.
The win chance of a .249 eqa team (the Pirates) against a .230 team (the Reds) is .598.
Extending this into bullpens would probably only help the Pirates more. They had a composite .240 eqa from their bullpen in 2013, compared to the Reds .245; their likely top 4 dominate the Reds top 4, in a game theory sense:
Melancon 190 v Chapman 207
Watson 207 v Hoover 231
Wilson 217 v LeCure 232
Grilli 225 v Simon 225
One of the things I do every day is the download from MLB for new players, both new to the majors and to the minors.
This guy showed up as new this morning:
639238,2013,”Arredondo, Edgar”,”Arredondo”,”Edgar”,”",”Edgar”,”",569,”TIG”,11,”OOC”,”1″,”47″,”",”R”,”R”,75,192,1997/04/16,”Culiacan Sinaloa, Mexico”,”",”-”,”-”,”",”-”,”-”,”-”
Without going through all the codes, this Edgar Arredondo has joined the Tigres of the Mexican League, who used to be in Mexico City years ago but have re-established themselves in Cancun (state of Quintana Roo) on the Yucatan coast. The big deal is the birthdate: 4/16/1997. If that’s accurate, it makes him easily the first 1997 player in my database.
And he was the Tigre’s starting pitcher of the night, going two scoreless innings (one hit, one walk). And I do find articles from last year with him pitching in the 15-under world championships, so yes, I’d say this guy’s legit.
In case you couldn’t tell, I have been back home for several days (perfect recovery no, but the trajectory is upwards) and the updates have been going out.
And I think I may have, finally, tracked down all the stupid errors in my software that came from Houston being in the American League now. We’ll see if all the pages load tomorrow like they are supposed to.
Until I return home from surgery. Maybe tomorrow, more likely saturday.
I participated in another “expert” draft on Tuesday night, courtesy of an invitation from Grey Albright at Razzball. It was a 12-team mixed league straight draft, and it was a strange experience – without a doubt the shallowest draft I’ve played in several years.
About the only plan I had going in was to avoid the players I had taken in LABR’s mixed league – spread my risks around, if you will. I wound up breaking that rule, not once, but four times, with players who had been sitting at the top of my boards for a long time by the time I took them.
The most interesting part of the draft for me, though - and not in a good way – was the physical toll it had on me. It was only about three hours, and I did the whole thing from the comfort of my office chair, but by the last few rounds I was sweating like I was in the Amazon, my stomach was a solid constricted knot, and my head was crossed between a solid compressional pain and a loopy lightheadedness that had me barely able to sit up. It gives me a lot of worry about how I’ll handle upcoming drafts, in person, away from my house, for six+ hours at a time.
I had the six spot in this draft, a touch better than the 13 I drew in LABR – right in the middle of the pack, with a steady interval between picks. Braun, Cabrera, Trout, McCutcheon, and Cano went before me. I settled for Matt Kemp readily enough. Those who know me know I tend to value pitchers more than most, so it should not come as a surprise that I took Justin Verlander in the second round (Kershaw had gone a couple of picks earlier, and I probably would have taken him if I could.)
The third round had me salivating for Adam Jones, who was taken right before my turn. Damn. (That was my only real non-self-inflicted Damn of the night, though, so that’s good). I reloaded with Jay Bruce instead, and when the fourth round got back to me I decided to take an infielder with Starlin Castro. The fifth round sent me back to pitchers, and I chose Craig Kimbrel – first closer taken, and with serious misgivings about how he’s looked this spring. Freddie Freeman is one of my favorite breakout guys for the season, and his spring numbers – .346 translated EQA in Florida games – hasn’t done anything to dissuade me. I got him in the sixth. I took Kris Medlen in the 8th – he wasn’t actually next on my list, but only because of my doubts about his endurance, giving me three Braves in a row.
My 8th round went to Carlos Gomez, and I’m not sure why – I seem to have had a sudden panic attack about stolen bases and just flipped his name out there. Number 9 for me was Sergio Romo, who I clearly like a lot better than any other site I’ve seen. Tenth I took the “catcher” who is least likely to catch any games at all this season, Victor Martinez. I’m honestly not sure what to expect from him, but I do love the lineup slot he’s got. Eleven saw me go back to the mound for C.J. Wilson; here’s looking at the minor surgery clearing up the problem that dragged him down the last couple of months of 2012.
Halfway through, and I make my first repeat in Danny Espinosa. I really should have taken Howie Kendrick here – they were essentially equal players on my draft sheet, and I like what Kendrick (.409) has done this spring a lot more than Espinosa (.232). I think the physical issues were starting to come on and affect me. Went to Doug Fister for my 13th pick, Pedro Alvarez at 14 (there was a run going on 3b going on, and I was getting panicky about being stuck with an even deeper option). Decided to take on some age and get Torii Hunter in the 15th. For 16 I hit my repeat board again, with another player I love as a 2013 breakout – Brandon Belt.
At 17 I went for Jason Vargas, who had actually been atop my board for a couple of rounds – I do love the outfield he’ll be pitching in front of. Alexei Ramirez at 18 wrapped up my infield. At this point I went looking for a pitcher who’s forecast was tolerable – not necessarily the best that’s left, but someone who had value within the format – but was having a strong spring. And I came up Jeff Niemann. I decided to take Joaquin Benoit next – I’ve got Rondon in another league, so I should have a closer in at least one of them. I did sort of the same thing for hitters, bringing up Aaron Hicks and his likely seizure of Minnesota’s center field. Hmm. Probably not my best choice of words. That left one more spot on my roster, and I filled it with a repeat (ugh) of Drew Stubbs (ugh ugh).
I was able to wash that sour taste out of my mouth by taking the hottest of hot bats, Jackie Bradley, with my first reserve pick. I liked him a lot coming into the season – the straight output forecast gave him a .274 eqa and 3.0 WARP, which was the 3rd-best total amongst Boston outfielders (Victorino and Ellsbury were higher). I certainly don’t like him less with his spring. Found my way to taking Hyunjin Ryu, another repeat, next, but I love what I get from the Korean numbers. And with the last pick, I went with a guy whose spring numbers are even better than Jackie Bradley’s, and in an organization where there is a lot less talent blocking his path to the majors – Christian Yelich of the Marlins.
And so to bed.
As so often happens, the rollout didn’t go quite as expected.
Spring data didn’t actually start loading until Monday, but should be on all player cards now. (Just the 2013 spring data).
The pitchers forecast pages were supposed to become analogous to the hitter pages – primarily through the addition of their top 20 comps. But it looks like that change didn’t make it all the way through the list – it seems to cut off somewhere between CC Sabathia and Jeff Samardzija. And there seem to be some odd problems – Trevor Bauer’s comp list has reasonable personnel but strange numbers, which I think might relate to having less than three years of work; I think innings are getting divided by 3, but runs are only getting divided by 2.
But in Miguel Gonzalez’s case, I find it very hard to believe that comp list belongs with that starting line – as though two jobs were running at once, and the other guys comp list made it in. Let me dig into those issues.
Update – Bauer problem solved, and yes, the less than three years bit had a lot to do with it.
Just as I’m getting ready to throw in the towel, I finally track down the bugs in the pitching projections that have been driving me up a wall for more than a month. And damned if it isn’t always the stupidest, piddlingest crap that is the hardest to find – I’d managed to switch the indices between the input league and the output league.
The way the program is supposed to work, the real stats are compared to the real league, and then adjusted to the new league. Somehow, don’t know when or how, the part that was supposed to move the stats from translation space back to the expected 2013 reality was going off on a weird angle.
And yes, that was holding me up from writing. I couldn’t face up to an audience without having a proper product (even if the product, with all its faults, was going out already.)
So start by checking out the Projected Standings tab. That’s the culmination of this winter’s work, as it stands now…early in the spring, with a lot of decisions yet to be settled. I would have liked to have had this done two months (and two of my own drafts) ago, but life doesn’t always move at our preferred pace.
|AL East||Won||Lost||Runs||Runs A|
Just to be clear about what goes in to the projections: all of the performance rates are based on the computer output. No manual intervention allowed. The computer also sets the upper limit for playing time. For a clear starter, I’ll stay within that limit, with a few exceptions (Stephen Strasburg, for instance, I bounced a good 30 IP above the computer, which is still a conservative 180 innings). Deciding on who’s the starter – and how long they’ll hold it, and who the likely replacements are – that’s all me.
And when I put all of those things together, I get an absolute free for all in the AL East, with four out of five
dentiststeams falling within an 84-87 win range. Looking at the Playoff Chances tab, which runs with these projections a million times, they are all in the 37-50% range for making the playoffs. The Orioles are well back, around 10% – as much as I don’t want it to be so, their performance last year was built on so much good luck that a repeat seems impossible.
Going back to the ‘Projected Standings’, if you click on the TOR tab you’ll get my full projection for the team. The team stats are sortable; just click the header line. Each player should be a link; click there and you should get a full page for the player, with stats for his full career, right through whatever he’s done in spring training so far this year. (I think – I’ve been able to run the ST stats manually, but they haven’t gone through an automated computer run yet). Everything is still subject to change, and I welcome your suggestions on what to add. And write on – topic selection has always been a weakness for me.
And so, to bed.
No sooner do I say I am back, then I come down with an inflammation of my stomach that’s wiped me out for a week.
I estimate that my gas generation this past week has vaulted me into a top 10 source for climate change.
Not that I ever really left. Kept updating everything behind the scenes, just didn’t say anything about doing it. I guess I hit a point where I felt like I was saying the same things over and over again, and wasn’t coming up with anything new. So I walked away for awhile, maintaining things as much as a reference for myself and inviting anyone who wants to to use it as well.
My personal baseball season gets under way tonight, with my first draft of the years…which I’ll follow with an auction for another league this coming weekend.
I’m still not sure I have anything new to say, but maybe I’m over letting that bother me. At least temporarily.
I’m in Phoenix this weekend, doing a interview with NHK television, primarily talking about the prospects for Japanese players in the US…which this year means lots of Yu Darvish. If you’ve seen the projections I’ve made, then you already know I’m very bullish on him. Simply put, he has the best statistics of any pitcher we’ve seen leave Japan – better than Matsuzaka’s – and, yes, I know about and have accounted for the extreme drop in Japanese offense last year. The only negative thing I have to say concerns his workload, where he exceeded 31 batters per start last year. That would normally be a very large concern, but let me make two points. One, that extreme offensive decline meant that a higher than usual number of these batters should have come with the bases empty – so pitching from the windup, and less likely arm strain. Two, every scouting report glows over his smooth, repeatable mechanics, which we also think leads to a higher pitch capacity.
I’ve been doing these interviews with NHK for about eight years now, we think since Hideki Matsui first signed with the Yankees. They are always a lot of fun to do; they feed me really open-ended questions (So, Norichika Aoki?) and just let me go, and I’ll rattle off whatever I can think of, with digressions into whatever sabermetric points I think have relevance to the case or explanations of my process or…really whatever. We did the interview outside, at the Dodgers’ training camp offices, with Clayton Kershaw throwing warmup pitches on a mound right behind me, and various players staring out windows right at us while running on the treadmill inside. Pleasant as I make it sound, the conditions were actually kind of nasty – there was a 25-30 mph breeze blowing in with the occasional grain of sand or dust, and temps only in the low 50s. We had to seek a more sheltered location because the sound man couldn’t hear anything but wind through our mics.
And in the middle of the interview, I made a point about the ongoing discussion about expanding to a second wild card team this year – a decision that was officially announced while I was being interviewed. It took a little while to sort through the logic changes that come with having two wild cards, but the post-season odds calculator is now running that way. The biggest thing to like about it, for me, is re-introducing a real race for something like the expected Yankee-Red Sox collision – it really matters who wins the division and who gets the wild card, beyond just a one-game home advantage.
While everything on this site is free, a donation through Paypal to help offset costs would be greatly appreciated. -Clay
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