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Ask Jack: Minnesota Twins' Jack Goin Answers Your Questions

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#21 Jack Goin

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 03:40 PM

Hi Jack, if forced to choose just one, what is your single favorite publically-available stat to measure offensive performance and why? (ie - BA, OBP, SLG, OPS, RC, RAA, OBA, VORP, TAv, any of their weighted brethren, etc)


We regularly refer to OPSBI.:D

#22 twinscowboysbulls

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 03:45 PM

Jack, thanks for being a part of Twins Daily.

Why do the Twins hold certain qualities or skills, if you will, so near and dear to their heart when there are statistics out there that prove otherwise. I'm just going off the top of my head, Drew Butera. The front office put a ton of weight on his "ability to call/catch a good game" and chose to overlook his career .500 OPS.

When a defensive-oriented player is struggling to this extent offensively, do you step in ever or in Butera's case, did you step in and say that his defense is no where near outweighing his lack of offensive production? Is Management willing to completely overlook a players offensive totals if they can "catch the ball?" Nick Punto is another player that comes to mind, Pedro Florimon, etc. This sounds stupid, but have you been able to help the Twins FO forget about things like grit, chemistry, toughness?

#23 Thrylos

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 03:47 PM

Jack,
here is a question for you (let's call it hypothetical situation) :

Who would you rather have:

Pitcher A who never pitched in the majors, is 25 (and let's say his birthday is today), had a record of 24-0 with 1.27 ERA in a foreign league that is likely a AAA equivalent competition, is projected to have an about 3.50 xFIP in the majors and would cost about $150 million for 5 years

or

Pitcher B who has been pitching in the majors for a while with a few All Star appearances and post-season, including World Series, experience, just turned 33, and in the majors in 2013 he finished 10-14 with an ERA of 4.70 and an xFIP of around 3.65. He struck out more per 9 in the majors than pitcher A did in his league. Let's say that he would cost around $25 million for 2 years with an additional option and incentives.

If you could sign either (No problems, they both want to come and play for you. Cleared by doctors. Scouts say they are both great) Who would you rather sign?

Thanks

Edited by Thrylos, 01 November 2013 - 03:52 PM.

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#24 Jack Goin

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 04:03 PM

Jack,
here is a question for you (let's call it hypothetical situation) :

Who would you rather have:

Pitcher A who never pitched in the majors, is 25 (and let's say his birthday is today), had a record of 24-0 with 1.27 ERA in a foreign league that is likely a AAA equivalent competition, is projected to have an about 3.50 xFIP in the majors and would cost about $150 million for 5 years

or

Pitcher B who has been pitching in the majors for a while with a few All Star appearances and post-season, including World Series, experience, just turned 33, and in the majors in 2013 he finished 10-14 with an ERA of 4.70 and an xFIP of around 3.65. He struck out more per 9 in the majors than pitcher A did in his league. Let's say that he would cost around $25 million for 2 years with an additional option and incentives.

If you could sign either (No problems, they both want to come and play for you. Cleared by doctors. Scouts say they are both great) Who would you rather sign?

Thanks

Nice try. Creative line of questioning though.

#25 jorgenswest

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 04:47 PM

What technologies or data or new analysis have most helped major league teams in their decision making process in the last 5-10 years?

What's next? Any emerging technologies or analysis that teams will be available in the next 5 years?

#26 ashburyjohn

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 05:08 PM

Pulling this question of mine from the other thread...

Jack, have you been tasked to look at the business side of things as well as player evaluations? For example, airlines and hotels have expertise by now in a well-developed field of Revenue Management (or Operations Research, more generally) - do the Twins engage in anything that might fall into that category, for example to consider the business ramifications of losing 100 versus keeping it below that threshold?

#27 Jack Goin

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 05:17 PM

What technologies or data or new analysis have most helped major league teams in their decision making process in the last 5-10 years?

What's next? Any emerging technologies or analysis that teams will be available in the next 5 years?

Obviously Pitch fx revolutionized not only the analytics world but scouting as well. The amount of information we have been able to pull from this is amamzing.
A relatively new company TrackMan records much of the same info as Pitch f/x along with batted ball data. You should follow Josh Orenstein on Twitter at @JoshOrensteinTM. He is tweeting out a bunch of fun info from the Arizona Fall League right now.
There are a few tests we do on our medical side that have helped us prevent or recognize injuries faster the past two seasons.
I think Field f/x is the next big thing. This could really help us with defensive metrics.

Edited by Jack Goin, 01 November 2013 - 05:25 PM.


#28 Jack Goin

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 05:23 PM

Pulling this question of mine from the other thread...

Jack, have you been tasked to look at the business side of things as well as player evaluations? For example, airlines and hotels have expertise by now in a well-developed field of Revenue Management (or Operations Research, more generally) - do the Twins engage in anything that might fall into that category, for example to consider the business ramifications of losing 100 versus keeping it below that threshold?

I keep my work to the baseball side of things but we do have business analytics department as well that is separate from what we do.

#29 Jack Goin

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 08:28 PM

The Twins have long had a propensity to go after control pitchers who don't walk batters....finding a lot of value in that. It makes sense that on offense, going after hitters that can/will work a walk would have the same value, but the Twins haven't put nearly as much effort on that side. Is there anything to that?

The Twins (and every team really) plays lefty/righty matchups constantly with relievers from a pitching perspective....presumably knowing that the platoon advantage is a big deal in those at-bats. Doesn't it make as much sense to make an effort to platoon hitters to take advantage of that on the offensive side? Or is the idea of a platoon really just overrated because of roster limitations? Maybe swapping one less lefty reliever would allow for one more lefty hitter to allow for a platoon?

I'm not sure your observation about hitters is totally true. Willingham is capable of working a walk. He had a 14% BB%. Everyone knows Joe's ability to work deep in counts, but he is an anomaly. Most guys don't hit as well with 2 strikes as he does. Doumit had an above average BB%. Even guys with limited experience like Colabello & Herrmann had 9%+ walk rates.
Also, if you look at count splits guys tend to hit well early in the count. I would say it is more about getting a pitch you can drive, no matter if it is early in the count or not. You can get to a bullpen by knocking a guy around and scoring runs just like you can taking pitches and driving up the pitch count.

In regards to your platoon question I think Terry addressed this question pretty well in his Q&A with Parker for the Off-Season Handbook. You would like to find guys who can play everyday, 150+ games. Those are good players. They can hit both RHP & LHP well. If you have the need to platoon for whatever reason it can work if you set it up correctly.

#30 Jack Goin

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 08:32 PM

What player has been the most "positive" player brought in that you suggested? Which player did you recommend yet the Twins didn't bring in that you regret?

(sorry for the poorly worded sentence...long day)

Long day or have you been in a bottle of vodka like your username suggests?

#31 twinsnorth49

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 09:00 PM

Long day or have you been in a bottle of vodka like your username suggests?


Rhetorical question.

#32 jokin

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 09:15 PM

Rhetorical question.


Members have been banned for less....:o

#33 Seth Stohs

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 09:52 PM

Jack, I think I recall you talking earlier in the season (maybe spring training?) about hoping to see some advances in the analytics available in the minor leagues. I'm wondering if you've seen more analytics used in the minor leagues? Are those teams/affiliates getting the technology they need to provide your group and Brad's people with any information that may not have been available even a year or two ago?

#34 twinsnorth49

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 10:26 PM

Members have been banned for less....:o


Some things are worth the risk...

#35 Trevor0333

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 11:08 PM

Hello Jack,

Thanks for doing this, fans really appreciate it!

We often hear how the team intends to be active/aggressive on players but then is shocked at what teams throw at these players. I find it suprising that the FO would have such a continual issue with guaging the upcoming markets. With Jim Pohlad remarking how they need to be more aggressive this year & payroll definitely available. Do you feel there is a better understanding of what the value of cotnracts the FA market will be garnering this off season considering the new TV money being available to all teams as well?

When there is a scenario like this last season where there was payroll available but went unused. Why isnt there an effort to restructure contracts or sign players to front loaded contracts so as to not tie up as much money in future payroll that would hamstring the team from resigning the players they want to keep around?

Edited by Trevor0333, 02 November 2013 - 01:13 AM.
I suck at editing


#36 ashburyjohn

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 11:29 PM

Some things are worth the risk...


Moderator's note: Let's keep the signal-to-noise ratio at a record high level, folks. Parker didn't mention, but it's probably obvious, that this is a thread the moderation team is watching closely. Review the Comments Policy if you need a refresher on where the "risks" lie; most members have nothing to worry about.

#37 Trevor0333

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Posted 02 November 2013 - 01:21 AM

Moderator's note: Let's keep the signal-to-noise ratio at a record high level, folks. Parker didn't mention, but it's probably obvious, that this is a thread the moderation team is watching closely. Review the Comments Policy if you need a refresher on where the "risks" lie; most members have nothing to worry about.


This sounds like an advanced baseball stat :D

#38 launchingthrees

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Posted 02 November 2013 - 04:42 AM

We regularly refer to OPSBI.:D


Is this a serious response? I'm bad at detecting sarcasm over the internet.

#39 shs_59

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Posted 02 November 2013 - 04:46 AM

Hey Mr. Goin....

Which College had the privlage to call Jack one of their students?

Also Does , in you're estimation or best honesty, Terry Ryan OR Rob Antony know what BABIP truley is?

IF so Great!

How about WRC+ ?

On the pitching side which do you prefer as a great way to assess a pitcher.?
Is You're method/ formula differ greatly or actually is similar to the above mentioned Mr. Ryan and Antony.?

I Apologize for long question, and realize it may go un-read anyways.

Top Twins prospects ? 1. Byron Buxton (OF-AA)  2. J.O. Berrios (P-AAA) 3.Jorge Polanco (2B-AAA) 4.) Tyler Jay (P-A+) 5. Nick Gordon (SS-A) 6. Max Kepler (OF-AA) 7. Stephen Gonsalves (P-A+) 8. Felix Jorge (P-A) 9. Nick Burdi (RP-AA),10.Kohl Stewart (P-A+) 11. Alex Meyer (P-AAA) 12. A.B. Walker (OF-AA) 13. Taylor Rogers (P-AAA) Just Missed :P OF Travis Harrison, P Jake Reed, C Stuart Turner.  (e.Rosario, m. Sano, t. May, t. Duffey -graduates)


#40 Celebrity Weddings!

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Posted 02 November 2013 - 07:20 AM

I have a lot of fun watching teams play extreme defensive shifts.

Do you take into account how much fun I'm having when you determine the value of these shifts?