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Mike Frasier Law

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Everything posted by Mike Frasier Law

  1. I will watch and listen to the Twins in 2015. I didn't renew my 20 game season ticket package, and that was only partly because of the bad baseball on the field. I wanted to pick and choose which games I go to - and I want to be there for some spectacular debuts in 2015. I'm never going to stop loving my Twins. I've just lost the ability to convince myself that we are among the smarter teams in baseball.
  2. I've been notorious for wearing rose colored glasses when it comes to my favorite team. I got fed up with Gardy's decisions (and nicknames) but loved him until he was fired. I always find myself defending Terry Ryan and why the Twins will probably be better than everyone expects next year. But I just went through a crisis of faith. It began with the signing of Torii. At least, that was the beginning of this crisis. I looked at the 2014 Twins and thought: we scored lots of runs. All we need to do is prevent more runs. Pitching could seriously improve, but the easiest and most obvious improvement is in outfield defense. I know, I know, no one loves defensive metrics. But when you have an outfield defense ranked so poorly AND you have an entire pitching staff with a huge differential between ERA and xFIP (5.06 v. 4.08 for starters), there's probably something there. So what does Terry do? Buys a decent bat who was a worse RF than Arcia last year, with no reason to think he's going to get any better. So then I read Terry's reasoning: http://blogs.twincities.com/twins/2014/12/04/twinsights-terry-ryan-defensive-metrics-twins-ignore/ He says he watched Torii play 7 games and his defense was at least adequate. Is that really how he made this decision? He then says it probably didn't affect our pitching that much. ARGH And now we're looking for relivers, like Neshek, and for some 2nd or 3rd tier starters. So, I know I'm not the only one to have this crisis of faith in the Twins front office. Am I the last?
  3. Wow. I'm a little surprised at all the negativity about this. There may be reason to complain if he's given a major league deal. Maybe. But a lefty that can strike out guys? Worst case scenario, he could be great out of the bullpen. My hope is that they sign him to a minor league deal and he gets some AAA coaching on more consistent grips and control.
  4. Interesting article. Another way to measure his affect on the team is to look at base running values. Fangraphs has a base running stat - scoring based on runs above or below average. in 2014, the Nationals led baseball with a 12.8 BsR. The Twins were third, with 10.0. (The White Sox were worth -10.5, FWIW). In 2013, the Twins were worth -5.3 BsR, good for 21st in baseball. Who's to say how much of that is the coach versus players, but it does lend some credence to the argument that Molitor added significant value to the team.
  5. Wouldn't that be a statement to the fan base about changing directions?! I doubt it will happen, but I can see how it would be a good fit. If he's signed for 2-3 years, he will be credited for everything our up-and-coming prospects accomplish in that time. If he enjoys working with young, high-upside guys on an underachieving team, our only competition is the Cubs. Go get him!
  6. I'd take that bet. Hughes's most notable improvement from 2013 was his walk rate, but he also struck out .5/9 more and increased his gb% by 6 points. I think those are notable improvements as well.
  7. I really hope you're wrong. One of MLB's arguments is that nearly everyone can watch every game of every team if they have cable and MLB.tv. But of course that isn't true, and the plaintiffs are relying on people in your situation to really play up the unfairness of the entire situation. I think they realize that they wouldn't sound as sympathetic if they only focused on people like me who don't want to pay for cable. However, considering how most class action lawsuits get resolved, I can't blame you for the sentiment. Keep in mind that, since this is a class action, the judge will have to approve the terms of any settlement. That gives me hope that any settlement won't leave you in the dark.
  8. I think we are going to see changes to MLB.TV and blackout restrictions as soon as next year. I've been meaning to update the article we wrote this spring about the antitrust lawsuit against MLB. Short version is that it's not going well for the MLB. MLB and the teams finally tried to have the case thrown out and the judge decided that the antitrust exemption does not apply to the broadcast rights. A week later, we started seeing rumors of MLB easing blackout restrictions. I bet they start doing what HBO currently does. HBO allows you to stream shows if you already have HBO - you just need to create an online account. So for us, this means it solves the blackout restrictions, but you still have to buy cable.
  9. Maybe the problem isn't scouting - maybe the twins have not developed pitchers appropriately. Upside is just potential, of course, and it's never inevitable that someone will reach their upside. It's hard to isolate a singular cause to the home team's failure to have a respectable starting staff for the last 5 years. I suspect it's a combination of drafting, scouting, development, and luck. But I was every happy about the Meyer and May acquisitions, and I still am.
  10. I agree that gb% is underrated. Look at how Gibson's been able to have success with such a horrid strikeout rate. I do think the article and this discussion oversimplifies Worley's resurgence. His gb% is at 49.7% - a career high for him. His second best year? 2013 at 47.1% with the Twins. Here are some other big differences between the years: Year BABIP LOB% HR/FB 2013: .401 65.2% 15.5 2014: .291 74.5% 9.3% Some of the luck statistics normalized for him. Maybe that has to do with a better defense. Another factor was discussed in a Fangraphs article on tuesday: http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/return-of-the-most-deceptive-pitcher-in-baseball/ He is suddenly getting called strikes again. Why? Partly because he has better control, I imagine. But I don't think we should undervalue pitch framing here. Russell Martin is among the best defensive catchers in the game by any account. Anyway, I think there's a lot at play and simplifying it is dangerous, IMO
  11. So if I remember right, Hughes needs 8 1/3 innings to get his bonus. He's at 8. I wonder if he's done. If he comes back and walks a batter, he needs 2 more ks to maintain the single season record for k/bb ratio.
  12. As I mentioned in an earlier comment on this thread, ERA - FIP (which should show the effects of fielding on runs scored) for Twins this year is .64. That's more than 100 extra runs given up in a season. So I do think 50 runs is conservative.
  13. I was curious about how accurate this was. In 2014, the Twins pitching lead in difference between ERA and FIP at .64. In other words, their fielding has cost them .64 runs per game. Second place is the Rockies at .45. Ouch. If you limit it to SP, the Twins still lead at 1.07. Second place? Tigers at .51. The Twins have allowed 4.85 runs per game. If you decrease that by .64, they would actually have a positive run differential. So maybe it's time to focus on defense.
  14. I mentioned before that his velocity seemed a lot lower than I imagined when he first came up. Sure enough, his velocity and strikeouts have increased since being called up: August: 7.11 k/9 6.63 bb/9 4.1 innings per start fastball velocity 91.5 slider 81.3 change 82.9 September: 10.69 k/9 2.81 bb/9 5.1 innings per start fastball velocity 92.3 slider 82.6 change 83.7 Maybe it's correlation. Maybe it's confidence. But it's working.
  15. Over the last 30 days, 11 qualified batters have more walks than strikeouts. Two are Twins: Joe Mauer and Brian Dozier. (Victor Martinez is embarassing the league with a 3.6 bb/k ratio in that time; 1.59 bb/k ratio for the entire season!)
  16. I still pay attention because of the young guys. I'm also enjoying watching Hughes make history with his k/bb ratio. I'm going to try and catch all his starts to see if he can keep it above 11 and have the best season all time.
  17. Let's assume he finishes the year strong (not saying it's a given). I think what you do with Hicks depends a lot on two other questions: - is 2015 the year of youth or are we going to try and win 81 games? - is Buxton's offseason promising enough to make us think he will see Target field in 2015? If we're going to try and compete next year and if we think we need a CF for a few years before Buxton arrives, I think Hicks starts in AAA. Otherwise, why not let him play?
  18. In another forgettable season, something pretty cool is happening. I'm unabashedly a Phil Hughes fan, and I think I've referenced this stat before. Phil Hughes is currently tied with Bret Saberhagen for the best single season strikeout to walk ratio ever. They are tied at 11.0000. With 3 or 4 starts remaining, can he maintain that ratio?
  19. And this is why it's nice to see him pitching now - meaningless games in September while his nerves calm down. I want him to know what to expect when the season starts next year. I was under the impression that he threw harder than he's showing now. According to fangraphs, his fastball velocity has been between 88.1 and 94.1 with average at 91.6. Anyone here know if that's what he was doing in the minors, or is this late season fatigue?
  20. Yes, yes he did. Let's watch! http://m.mlb.com/min/video/topic/0/v35935381/?c_id=min I could watch that all day.
  21. Three excellent innings for May. Here's hoping he can do three more without the wheels falling off like last time
  22. We do have some big swingers. The hardest hit homerun by a Twin this year was by Arcia: http://m.mlb.com/video/v35069371/?c_id=mlb That one was 116.5 mph off the bat with a true distance of 468. Pinto's in second at 114 and 459: http://m.mlb.com/video/v32236589/?c_id=mlb It's fun to watch these young guys hit the ball hard.
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