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Saturday, April 20, 2013


Dom in RF? I like it.
Mayberry at 1B? Like it.

Nix should be in the lineup in LF and if Howard has a sore groin just put him on 15-day DL, call up Ruf to play 1B, and let him get healthy. If he isn't hitting for power, he's useless to this team.

Players dont go on the DL when they're hurt...they sit on the bench and occasionally PH.

Howard on the bench? I like it.
Brown in the lineup? I'd like him to join Howard.

awh: "If you consider a post where I state at the very beginning 'TTI, let's have a little fun,' as a post to be taken seriously, then I suggest you take a reading comprehension course."

In that case, what was the point of the post? I mean, I don't really get it. But whatever.

Neither Mayberry nor Frandsen can hit RHP, but Mayberry is the better choice to start in place of Howard because he can actually field the position.

Of course the best choice of all would be Nix, but he can't start because his bat is too valuable and will be needed for late inning heroics.

If Nix doesnt start against RHP when our other options are Mayberry and Galvis, why is he on the roster?

Is he also hurt and nobody is saying anything? Why else does he sit on a night like this with this set up?

Of course the best choice of all would be Nix, but he can't start because his bat is too valuable and will be needed for late inning heroics.

Well someone has to be available to save the day once Chase "Not Clutch" Utley screws everything up again ...

Why list people who didn't play as hitless? These posts are embarrassing.

I think it's worth keeping an eye on Gio Gonzalez's performance early in the season.

Just witnessed him melting down in the 4th inning against the Mets, throwing more than 40 pitches. His outing is over with a line of 4IP, 5ER. Last start against the Braves, He got chased after 5IP giving up 7ER.

I don't think Gonzalez is all of a sudden going to fall apart, but there was quite a difference between the pitcher he was for Oakland and the pitcher he was in his first year in Washington. He didn't have 2 starts where he gave up more than 3 runs last year until June 26. He was dominant last year. So far this year, he hasn't gotten past the sixth, and his last three starts have been 5 innings or less.

With Dan Haren getting beaten like a drum, it's tough to say now that the Nats replaced E-Jax with a guy that will give them equal production. If Gio regresses a bit and shows that he is the pitcher he was in Oakland, rather than who he was last season, that's another step back for a starting rotation that carried the team last year.

Again, he could just be experiencing a rough patch, but it's worth keeping an eye on to see if he improves in the next few starts.

Strasburg and Zimmermann are still both very legit #1 pitchers. Zimm is probably the most underrated pitcher in the NL.

I'd imagine their offense will be better too given Harper looking like one of the best players in baseball already at Age 20, Werth is healthy (for now), etc etc.

The loss of Jackson and Gio falling back definitely hurt their chances though...especially with the Braves going nuts.

Cards at +125 tonight? I'll take those odds for a small wager.

I wouldn't take the Cards with Clifton going tonight. Its not a playoff game so he should shut them down.

Ross Detwiler has been excellent, too, for the Nats in the early going. It's depressing.

Zimmerman's SIERA the last three years: 3.79, 3.70, 3.80. His xFIP the last three years: 3.92, 3.78, 3.78.

For comparison's sake, Cole Hamels' SIERA the last three years: 3.26, 3.03, 3.22. His xFIP the last three years: 3.28, 3.02, 3.23. And there are people here that argue Cole isn't an ace.

I like Zimmerman a lot, but he is not a #1. He's a nice #2-3, above-average pitcher.

MG- you'd bet against Lee the way he's been pitching and the way the Cards offense has been struggling?

As usual, I hope you lose money.

Zimmermann has consistently outpitched his xFIP his entire career. xFIP values SO rate too much in some cases (guys that dont walk anyone either like Zimmermann who is 8th in the majors in BB% since 2011).

He's 6th in ERA since the start of 2011 and 15th in FIP. He's an elite pitcher regardless of what his xFIP says.

I think citing FIP stats to evaluate what a pitcher already did is misuing the stat.

Iceman - At plus +125 and some of the numbers the Cards have vs Lee, yeah I take that gamble on a very small wager ($5).

I just have no idea what the Phils' offense does against Lynn. They have only faced him once so far:

Aug 12 @ CBP last year:

5 IP, 4 ER, 4 R, 2 BB, 2 K, 1 HR (Howard)

Lynn has had trouble throwing strikes this year and issues with his fastball command in 2 of his 3 starts.

Throws a ton of fastballs too without having a really plus offspeed pitch. It's too bad Howard isn't healthy & in the lineup because this is one you would love for Howard to face. RHP who throws a ton of fastballs that top out at 91-92.

Is Adams available or not? If not, Cholly is going to push Lee as far as he possibly can.

Why it makes it even dumber to start Nix tonight and the Cards have 2 LHP relievers to boot (Choate, Rzepczynski) who generally dominate LH pitchers.

All the fans should expect of Cholly is that he puts the pieces on the board in the correct alignment and doesn't make a huge gaffe. Most nights he doesn't even do that.

"...Howard has a sore groin just put him on 15-day DL, call up Ruf to play 1B, and let him get healthy. If he isn't hitting for power, he's useless to this team. "

MG, yep.

An unhealthy Howard who isn't hitting for power IS useless to the team.

Meant sit Nix.

Since 2011 (Note: using that cutoff date because that's when Zimm came back from his TJ surgery):

1. Clayton Kershaw: 2.71
2. Clifton Lee: 2.82
11. Cole Hamels: 3.24
12. Matt Cain: 3.25
13. Gio Gonzalez: 3.27
14. David Price: 3.28
15. Jordan Zimmermann: 3.34
16. Johnny Cueto: 3.35

I think citing FIP stats to evaluate what a pitcher already did is misuing the stat.

Posted by: lorecore | Saturday, April 20, 2013 at 05:41 PM

I assume you mean xFIP considering FIP is merely ERA without fielding while xFIP is a predictive stat saying what a pitcher's FIP SHOULD have been given their peripherals.

Bryce Harper just hit his 7th HR of the season.

He's pretty good.

Iceman, re. your 5:04 post:
Many here argued with me when I stated I expected a regression from the Nats' rotation this season. When I maintained that 4 of the 5 Nats' pitchers had career years last year, others pointed to their ages and maintained it could go the other way and they could get better.

Well, that's true and it's still early (so I might wind up being wrong), but I still maintain that they won't be as good this season - not nearly as good.

This is Lynn's career splits too:

vs RHB (490 PA): .270/.380/.460 (.840 OPS) & 6 HRs
vs LHB (459 PA): .230/.266/.341 (.607 OPS) & 15 HRs

I'm with Corn. At this point, I won't mind in the least when Cholly is either fired this year or much more likely not brought back.

Every team tries to load up their LH vs Lynn. Not Cholly.

Correct Lynn splits

vs LHB (459 PA): .270/.380/.460 (.840 OPS) & 15 HRs
vs RHB (490 PA): .230/.266/.341 (.607 OPS) & 6 HRs

one of jmj's two hits last night was off a right hander.

btw, happy "420" to all.

It's been the Nationals bullpen that has been awful in the early going (5.70 ERA). Not the starters (3.39 ERA).

Phils are dead last in the NL in ERA (4.74). That's really sad because I would bet they are either #1 or #2 in the overall dollars they have committed to their pitching staff in the NL.

The record for HRs by a 20 year old is 42 held by Mel Ott:

1. Mel Ott: 42
2. Frank Robinson: 38
3. Alex Rodriguez: 36

Harper has 7 so far in 68 PA.

He's currently on pace to hit 67 HRs if he plays 155 games.

No way he does that but he might just make history and take Ott's spot atop that leaderboard for 20 year olds.

Galvis is the new Howard! Take us to the promise land Freddy! I love how they won last night when it made no sense whatsoever.mhow great is baseball?

NEPP, yeah, that Harper guy is pretty good.

Give Risso credit for drafting him.... oh, wait....


So the Nats will regress from 2012? Great, maybe they'll only win 94 games instead of 98. Seriously.

The Phillies have $72 million committed to the rotation this year.

The Dodgers have $74.65 million committed to their rotation this year but that included Ted Lilly who is currently a swingman. Still, I'd put them ahead of us given that they just kept signing pitchers regardless. I did not add Capuano to their total. He would take them up to $80.65 million for 7 SP.

These are the Nats' relievers ERA:

Soriano: 7 G, 5.14 ERA
Mattheus: 6, 3.52 ERA
Clippard: 7 G, 5.40 ERA
Storen: 6 G, 7.11 ERA
H. Rodriquez: 6 G, 5.06 ERA
Duke: 4 G, 8.22 ERA
Stammen: 5 G, 5.40 ERA

H. Rodriquez & Duke has been awful & Clippard has really struggled with his command. Storen and Soriano have very good peripheral numbers and I expect them to be fine.

The key for them is Stammen. He was huge last year as a very reliable guy who plugged a ton of IP in the 6th-7th (88 1/3 IP) and did so well.

If he continues to struggle a bit, there bullpen is a bit shallow and they have some real issues in middle relief.

The Giants have $69.033 Million comitted to their rotation.

If Adams is hurt (and there was a reason the Phils didn't use him in consecutive days in spring training), the Phils' bullpen is in a world of trouble too. Back to square one last June after Contreras went down.

Means Durbin starts pitching more high leverage spots and Bastardo/Aumont suddenly share the 8th.

Saw the movie last summer in June only Qualls played the role of the crappy RHP journeyman reliever who was thrust into a starring role.

My other prediction:

The much-maligned Kratz goes yard tonight. RHP starter who loves to throw a ton of fastballs and a couple of RHP relievers who do too including Boggs and Rosenthal.

NEPP- so SIERA and xFIP should not be used when evaluating a pitcher's skill level?

Honest question here, because I always thought these were kind of the go-to stats. Maybe I'm wrong.

See all those awful ERA's for Nats' relievers?

Get ready for every single one of them to shut down the Phils.

***NEPP- so SIERA and xFIP should not be used when evaluating a pitcher's skill level?

Honest question here, because I always thought these were kind of the go-to stats. Maybe I'm wrong.***

There's nothing wrong with either but I wouldn't use them exclusively.

The only problem I have with both stats is that they over-emphasize the importance of SOs and SO rate. Its very important (shutup clout) overall for predicting success but for guys with very low BB rates, its importance goes down. Zimm has an average SO rate but an elite SO/BB rate and is underrated by both as a result.

You can scratch Ethan Martin from the list of possible Lannan replacements. He's pitching as we speak. And pitching poorly at that.

So Gio starts pitching badly the offseason after "his dad" is allegedly caught going to Bogenesis for "weight loss".

Yes, I'm implying something.

I think its gonna be Morgan that's called up, bap.

His upside isn't that high that adding him to the 25 man and starting his clock would hurt him and Cloyd is just awful. Morgan is the best bet to pull a KK in 2007 type run.

Here's a write-up on Zimmerman from Fangraphs that I think is pretty good- he had the 5th-highest LOB% of qualified starters last year (79.3%).

"Last season, Zimmermann ranked seventh among all starters in SIERA-ERA differential. Despite possessing pretty good fastball velocity, he has posted below average SwStk% marks and just average strikeout rates. He posted a .288 BABIP mark last year, which isn’t outrageously low, but when it’s paired with a 23% line drive rate, you begin to wonder how he managed a BABIP below .300, especially since he induced pop-ups at just a league average rate. Magic? Perhaps. His SIERA the last two seasons has been just 3.70 and 3.80, both significantly above his actual ERAs.

In 2011, he did it by allowing just a 5.9% HR/FB rate, which naturally jumped last year, but still fell below the league average. His LOB% was the key last year, as he ranked fifth in baseball in the metric. An LOB% that high is usually only sustainable when it is paired with a low SIERA, the quick proxy to identify the most highly skilled pitchers. So skills-wise, this is a pitcher who should be posting an ERA in the high 3.00 range. Just a smattering of poor luck or a small skills decline would get that ERA to a level no one would dare project."

If Adams goes down we should test drive oswalt. I'm nervous about bringing anybody else into such a high leverage spot.

Bullit, if by happy 420 you mean this link, I am with you ;)

NEPP: Morgan's really the only guy that makes sense. But he pitched the day after Lannan's last start so he won't be able to take Lannan's next turn in the rotation. Which means they'll probably use Valdes for the next start. When he gets lit up, then either he or Savery will be demoted for Morgan.

Oh good. Starter by committee. That worked really well last time, too.

Scott - that was heartwarming. Thanks.

Yeah, even with that issue in timing, Morgan is pretty much the only reasonable choice. Which is why they'll recall Rosenberg instead.

Apparently Galvis can play LF.

i'm refering to what louis armstrong called "the beloved herb." not sure wtf that hitler link was. here is the derivation of 420:

Galvis would have caught that.

Seth Rosen in AA is another possibility. He's off to a strong start, is 24 and pitched the day after Lannan too.

Obviously Morgan is a better choice than Rosen. Morgan is less likely to get shelled and this is a 6-8 week gig from all accounts so its not just an emergency start one time thing.

The early signs say we might be getting bad Cliff Lee tonight.

Lee's due for a crapfest. I hope it's not tonight. It'd be nice to string a couple of wins together.

Why is our best OF our UT infielder?

GIDP gets him out of it...hopefully it was just 1st inning jitters.

Gelb has a nice article up on Halladay's pitch selection last night.

He threw 50 sinkers, which is the highest % of sinkers he's thrown in a game since early 2009. That's what many of us said he had to do if he wanted to be successful without an effective cutter. For comparison's sake, he threw it 15% of the time in his first start of the year.

I think it's to be expected that he's going to have command issues while completely changing his pitching style. Going to that many sinkers is a complete overhaul. The ball/strike ratio isn't what should be focused on from last night's outing: it's the fact that he's made an adjustment that, unsurprisingly, produced good results. The command is something that will come with more reps.

At least Doc is finally listening to us on what he needs to do to be successful.

Everyone needs to take Chase's approach against this guy. If they do, he'll be out of the game by the 5th inning.

Not Productive.

An unproductive AB by Chase.

Two walks in two games? Chase has gone too far. r00b's trading him before the deadline.

Or they can do what Young just did and swing at 3 straight pitches. Either one.

If patience is a virtue, no club is less virtuous than the Philadelphia Phillies.

I don't care about walks. I care about Production™.

That looked more like good Cliff Lee.

Nice AB by Brown.

I guess I missed that Mayberry is in this game instead of Nix against a hard-throwing RHP.

Is Manuel trying to sabotage JMJ's career by sending him out to slaughter against RHP again and again?

I'm no Mayberry fan (in the least), but you can't blame him when Manuel puts him in the lineup against a guy like this, set up to fail.

Mayberry is at 1B and nix has no business there. The dumb move is saying nix and using Galvis in LF. Really dumb.

There are two possibilities as far as I see it:

1. UC doesnt trust Nix to play 1B.
2. Nix is injured to the point where he can PH but not play the field and they haven't said anything because its the Phillies and that's just how they are.

That was a nice play by Descalso! Darn.

Nix played 1B last year for us...he actually started there for 10 games till he tweaked his leg.

ben needs new choos. one's like jimmy's.

I'll bet the Phillies are thrilled tomorrow's game got picked up by ESPN. Phanatic's Birthday, traditional draw for families & kids, scheduled for 8PM on a Sunday night.

That's like the 3rd or 4th time already this season where Revere hit a ground ball that a fast player should have beaten out, and he failed to beat it out.

MG- Nix can't play first? Really? I believe Manuel's already inserted him into the game at first this year in the late innings.

Kratz is a total zero.

Nix did play some 1st base last year & he was utterly putrid there.

Iceman - He's played 19 games (16 GS)there in his professional career including 10 last year when Howard was out.

Nix was pretty bad at 1B though and looked really uncomfortable. I don't Mayberry is that much better at 1B but Mayberry has hit this year & has a bit more athleticism to play there.

The dumb move was Galvis starting tonight in LF.

Lynn is at 41 pitches through 2. Hopefully the Phils can continue to keep working counts & he's gone after the 5th.

Yeah, Boston is such a tough city, the streets were completely devoid of people because they were scared little rabbits hiding in their holes just like the gummint told them to. My how things have changed.

Come on, Cliff.

Lee is struggling to locate his fastball on the outer part of the plate here early.

That would have been the best highlight ever is Kratz could've come up w/ the catch.


Thanks Lynn. It amazes me how many NL pitchers are piss poor at bunting and really hurt themselves. Something that has definitely fallen off over the past 20-30 years.

Lee is way off tonight. This is gonna go bad swiftly.

Uh oh. Beltran up. Come on, Lee.

Yeah. Gotta respect Revere's arm there.


Redcoats - Yeah because what would have been smarter would have been armed groups of private citizens acting as vigilantes roaming around randomly, violating private property and even private residences, and administering mob justice.

That always turns out well.

That was a Strike.

Even LA was kind of hinting that Revere's arm really sucks and there was no reason that Kozma shouldn't have been able to tag up easily.

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