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nmigliore

Official 2013 New York Mets Thread

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Man...things have really turned on Hef.  He may get through this inning with only one run allowed, but he's laboring big-time. 


fvcking Can't-inilla.  You don't hit enough to screw your team with an error like that.

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Some really ugly baseball the last few days.

At least Niese is on his way back with mid-August the target.

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LOL yet another loss to Miami in the books. 

 

More sloppy baseball set that up -- Hefner walking a terrible hitter and Young bobbling a ball in LF that let Lucas go 1st to 3rd. 

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baseball is so maddening, in a year where we've handled the Braves we can't get a single win against the atrocious Marlins. This would be loss #6 in a row

 

Quintanilla can't pick up an easy grounder

 

3-1 count to Wright with 1st and 2nd 0 out...he swings at ball 4 and flies out to Stanton. Then Ike and Byrd hack at pitches outside the zone and make easy outs.

I just hate the Marlins right now. The Ed fvcking Lucas show won't end

 

Good news on Niese though. Curious where his velocity will be

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The Mets STILL can't get Greg Dobbs out. 

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Mets win! Boy that was shaping up to be a typical 2013 Mets' debacle vs Miami with Dobbs and Pierre in the middle of things and Stanton coming up with the tying run at 3rd and winning run at 1B. Phew.

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It's amazing how even when they beat the fish it's still infuriating

 

Parnell somehow owns Stanton though. Hitting 1-9 against him. Meekly grounded out to Murphy

 

Greg Dobbs is a .227 hitter. .364 vs the Mets

 

good rebound effort for the pen

Edited by '7'

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In fairness '7', you've got to stop bailing out on the team when they're losing, and automatically giving them a loss when they're trailing.  They're 22-16 in their last 38 GP.  30-27 since May 26.  They've been a reasonably competitive ballclub for a while now...far from great, but it's hard to put up records like those unless you're avoiding prolonged stretches of futility, and for the most part, the Mets have managed to do that...not entirely, but enough, and it's not like they've made some killer trades you can point to as a turning point...basically Passive's made some "what the hell, why not?" deals, some of which haven't worked (Ankiel), some of which have (Byrd, Young).  Point is most of Sandy's moves have been hold-the-fort, low-risk, low-reward-type, and he's actually gotten some nice returns on some of these guys...Passive's given the major-league team minimal support, saddled them with the salami bat that is Ike Davis, and yet, the team has now managed a nice record over their last 38 GP.  Time to give them some credit and respect. 

 

BTW, at quick glance, the Tejada/Quintanilla comparison reveals a Dave Brown-to-Danny Kanell similarity.  Kanell wasn't light years better than Brown, but his Giants started winning when he initially took over, which made it look like he was bringing a little energy/something different to the team.  And I'll admit, though Quintanilla isn't putting up eye-popping numbers, his performance FEELS like it's somehow a lot better than Tejada's, I think mostly because he's been getting on base a good bit more.

 

Tejada:  50 GP, 187 AB, 18 RS, 39 H, 10 2B, 0 3B, 0 HR, 10 RBI, 14 BB, 23 K, .209 BA, .267 OB%, .262 SLG, .529 OB+SLG

Quintanilla:  51 GP, 182 AB, 21 RS, 42 H, 6 2B, 2 3B, 2 HR, 14 RBI, 25 BB, 38 K, .231 BA, .321 OB%, .319 SLG, .639 OB+SLG 

 

Clearly neither player is lighting it up, but Quintanilla at least finds his way onto the basepaths somewhat, even when he's not really hitting...he's batting .222 for the month of July, but with a solid .357 OB%, and has a 17 BB-to-18 K ratio as well, which is very good.  Tejada flat-out wasn't doing ANYTHING well at the plate.

 

Hef's numbers since the ASB:

 

11.2 IP, 20 H, 19 R, 16 ER, 4 HR, 6 BB, 10 K, 12.71 ERA, 0-2 record 

 

If you're a believer in sabes, there's a formula called FIP (Fielding Independent Pitching) that predicted that Hef was due for a regression.  FIP is actually a mathematical formula:

 

FIP = ((13*HR)+(3*(BB+HBP))-(2*K))/IP + constant   (The constant is derived from taking the league-average FIP and subtracting that from league-average ERA).

 

To explain further, this formula measures the events that are deemed to be most under control by the pitcher (strikeouts, walks, hit-by-pitches, and homeruns)...as we all know, some teams field the ball better or worse than others.  Basically, if you're the kind of pitcher that surrenders a lot of home runs and walks/HBPs, then your FIP is likely going to suck, with HRs allowed being the major killer in this formula.  Well, yeah, no sh!t.   

 

I think what it comes down to, is that if you're the kind of guy that's prone to giving up HRs and fly balls, like Hef has been (19 in 119.2 IP), eventually, the solo shots you might be giving up when you're "hot", will eventually become two and three-run shots, which obviously are a lot more damaging.  I think Hef's overall FIP (4.54, considered poor) was hurt a lot by his first four appearances of the season (three starts, one relief)...he gave up 7 HR in his first 14 IP.  He then allowed just 8 HR in his next 94 IP, along with just 20 BB (and 83 K).  I don't have the constant (for the FIP to be accurate, I would have to derive the constant from the period starting April 25 and ending on July 12) to calculate Jeremy's FIP for that period, but suffice it to say his FIP must have been very good for that time frame.  The traditional numbers sure were:

 

15 starts, 94 IP, 79 H, 38 R, 29 ER, 20 BB, 83 K, 8 HR, 2.78 ERA.   

 

Sabes guys claim that FIP is a better predictor of success/failure than is ERA (which is obviously affected by ballpark, team fielding prowess, etc), and I'm not disputing that...but just like ERA, it can sometimes be misleading too.  In the case of Hefner, a lot of what cause his FIP to be shaky were those very bad first four appearances...they had to have dragged down his season FIP significantly, even with the good HR and BB numbers he put up over that 94 IP, 15-start stretch.  Now, out of nowhere, he's having another valley like he did to start the season.

 

What does this mean?

 

If Hefner is able to become a major-league mainstay, I think he may turn out to be a Bronson Arroyo-type...a guy capable of good stretches, but some unbelievably bad bursts (hopefully short-term) that can skewer both his traditional and sabermetric numbers.  Just like Arroyo, I think with the bad with Hef will be very, VERY bad. 

 

If (huge if) Hef can put together 10-15 start strings of mostly good performances (say, with 8-12 of the starts being quality-type) going forward, it will make those WTF?!, three or four disaster games bearable for whatever team employs him (I don't think he's going to be Met beyond 2014, if that long).  It does mean both his ERA and his FIP probably won't ever be impressive over a full season, but you may get some nice stretches of solid performances. 

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FIP can also be skewed by league/park effects -- a pitcher posting a 4.00 FIP in San Diego doesn't deserve to be treated the same as a pitcher with a 4.00 FIP in Cincinnati -- which is why I like to look at FIP-, which basically scales a pitcher's FIP versus league average. For example: 100 is average, 105 would be 5% worse than average, 95 would be 5% better, etc. (sort of like an inverse ERA+). And for the record, park/league-adjusted FIP is basically what goes into Fangraphs' WAR for pitchers.

 

There is also xFIP, which basically takes care of the HR problem you're alluding to. Homerun per flyball ratio is a stat that can greatly help or hurt a pitcher's FIP, however, this stat is proven to not be very predictable, so xFIP always regresses a pitcher's HR/FB ratio to league average (usually 9-10%). The amount of homers it predicts a pitcher to give up (or should've gave up) is based on his flyball rate. If two pitchers pitch for the same team and have identical K% and BB% rates, but 50% of one pitcher's batted balls are in the air, and the other pitcher's flyball rate is 40%, the latter pitcher will have a better xFIP (this is why groundballs are very important).

 

Hefner's HR/FB is 14.1%, above the league average, hence his xFIP is lower than his FIP at 4.06, which is far more respectable and once adjusted for parks/league, is closer to league average (108 xFIP-; again, 100 would be average).  

 

There's always going to be exceptions; guys like Matt Cain and Jered Weaver routinely post low HR/FB ratios and thus beat out their xFIP. On the other side of the coin, some guys are just homer prone and consistently post high HR/FB ratios (Brett Myers is a good example). You do need very large samples to really prove this, however, so it's always safer to assume HR/FB regression to league average in most cases.

Edited by nmigliore

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xFIP and FIP- seem like more accurate numbers...overall Hef has clearly been slightly above-average...but like I said, if this season is anything to go by (it's probably not, too short of a sample), it looks like Hef's valleys are going to be very statistically damaging.

 

What remains to be seen is if Hef ever has another 15-start burst like this ever again.  If he finishes up this season strong and somewhere in the vicinity of that 15 game stretch, if I'm Sandy, I move him no matter what.  I appreciate what he's done this season, but no way can I sell myself on him on him repeating 2013 in seasons to come. 

 

OOPS, made a mistake...Hef's 108 is actually 8% below average.  Just shows how bad his valleys have killed his numbers. 

Edited by Colorado Rockies 1976

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I actually think the Arroyo comparison is pretty good for Hefner; both pitchers profile very similarly, from K%, BB%, and groundball rate to their poor splits vs lefties (big sample size differences apply here, of course):

 

Arroyo career: 15.2 K%, 5.7 BB%, 40.4 GB%

Hefner career: 16.9 K%, 6.5 BB%, 44.5 GB%

 

Arroyo career vs LHB: 5.36 FIP, .284/.341/.486 slash line

Hefner career vs LHB: 4.75 FIP, .286/.336/.497 slash line

 

 

-----

 

CR: to be clear, Hefner's season xFIP is not above average. Like I said, it works like an inverse ERA+, so 108 would be 8% WORSE than league average.

 

We'll see what the next 2 months bring but right now Hefner profiles more as a swingman type for me; a good #6 starter who won't hurt you in the rotation if a starter goes down for a 4-6 weeks, but also not someone you're thrilled with if he has to pitch 180+ innings.

Edited by nmigliore

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I actually think the Arroyo comparison is pretty good for Hefner; both pitchers profile very similarly, from K%, BB%, and groundball rate to their poor splits vs lefties (big sample size differences apply here, of course):

 

Arroyo career: 15.2 K%, 5.7 BB%, 40.4 GB%

Hefner career: 16.9 K%, 6.5 BB%, 44.5 GB%

 

Arroyo career vs LHB: 5.36 FIP, .284/.341/.486 slash line

Hefner career vs LHB: 4.75 FIP, .286/.336/.497 slash line

 

 

-----

 

CR: to be clear, Hefner's season xFIP is not above average. Like I said, it works like an inverse ERA+, so 108 would be 8% WORSE than league average.

 

We'll see what the next 2 months bring but right now Hefner profiles more as a swingman type for me; a good #6 starter who won't hurt you in the rotation if a starter goes down for a 4-6 weeks, but also not someone you're thrilled with if he has to pitch 180+ innings.

 

In bold:  yeah, already saw that, amended my post as such.

 

As far as the Arroyo/Hefner comparison goes, I was thinking more in terms of Arroyo's penchant for having some really REALLY bad starts that tend to hurt his regular season numbers.  Arroyo's clearly hurt further by pitching his home games in Great American Bandbox.   

Edited by Colorado Rockies 1976

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Ed Lucas breaks up the no hitter. Of fvcking course, a typical scrub. And now the game is tied at 2-2. Weeeeeeeeee.

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I know 1 out in the 7th isn't really close to a no hitter, but if Ed Lucas was on fire I wouldn't pee on him

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Byrd and 3rd zero out....can't even get the fvcking run in

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Leadoff triple for Byrd. Mets can't score him, because of course they can't. 

 

This is exactly the kind of game they lose.

Edited by nmigliore

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What an a$$hole Qualls is. He didn't get hurt but almost deserved to with that display of douchbaggery

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Nice play by Murphy in the 10th to rob Mathis of a hit.

 

Strange Wheeler was pulled at 87 pitches...in a 6 man rotation no less. I was expecting Collins to run him out there for 110 or so

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Trade deadline is 4 ET tomorrow. I'm going to be so livid if Byrd is still a Met. I totally understand if teams are gun shy considering his out-of-nowhere-season at his age, but I'd still GLADLY take a team's 7th or 10th best prospect, and I'm sure there's at least one outfield-needy contender out there that would give up a #6-10 prospect in their system to take a shot that Byrd can maintain this great year for the stretch run. 

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Byrd and 3rd zero out....can't even get the fvcking run in

 

I know this is hardly breaking news, but I can't STAND Ike Davis.  Great, he fouled off a lot of pitches when Byrd was on third.  If he was a first or second-year player that was still developing, fine, but I'm not giving him kudos for "silver linings" at this point.  He's in his fourth major-league season, and is currently having his worst year, and an embarrassing one at that...it's like he's an overmatched rookie.  The only thing he's done better since coming back is drawing more walks.  The OB% has been good (.370 since his recall), but he needs to be a threat to deliver in a big spot...all the fvcking guy had to do last night was get a sac fly, hit a well-placed grounder...nope. 

 

He was hitting .161 when he got sent down.  He went 3-for-5 to raise his average to .173 on July 5.  He's raised his BA a whopping .003 since then, to .176.  Awesome.  God I hope the Mets rid themselves of this zilch come the offseason. 

 

 

Trade deadline is 4 ET tomorrow. I'm going to be so livid if Byrd is still a Met. I totally understand if teams are gun shy considering his out-of-nowhere-season at his age, but I'd still GLADLY take a team's 7th or 10th best prospect, and I'm sure there's at least one outfield-needy contender out there that would give up a #6-10 prospect in their system to take a shot that Byrd can maintain this great year for the stretch run. 

 

Sadly, I think Sandy is going to fvck up royally today.  If Byrd was in his early 30s and had a good recent track record, I could understand Sandy being a little hesitant to move him unless the return was significant, but Byrd should be seen as a nice bonus chip...sometimes you get lucky with these "warm body, what the hell, bridge the gap"-types, and clearly the Mets got phenomenally lucky with Byrd.  Strike while the iron's hot...Byrd has value to someone...even if Byrd were to fall flat on his face, he's not going to cost a potential team its top chip, and as far as paying him goes, he's practically FREE.  55-60 games or so and his new team has no commitment beyond that.  You can't ask for a better rental than this...one decent prospect is all it should cost.  And for the love of GOD, if Passive likes Byrd that much and really believes that this year isn't a one-year thing, RE-SIGN HIM IN THE OFFSEASON!  The Mets should have as good a shot as any other team, if he's that important to them. 

 

Unfortunately, I think Passive and the Wilpons somehow think it's important to have "momentum" going into next season.  Wrong, dummies.  You've got young pitching that pretty much ensures the team should be competitive next season, regardless of whether the 2013 team wins 70 games or 80 games.  It's great that this team is 23-16 in their last 39 GP, but is having the chance to finish second in the division with a sub-.500 record really all that important?  Even if the Mets win out the rest of the season at the .590 clip they've shown in their last 39, they'll finish the season with an 82-80 record, and let's face it, that's probably a longshot...not impossible, but definitely a longshot.  Is sacrificing potential helpful pieces of 2014 and beyond worth it for that?  I say no way, but I think Passive and Co. feel differently.  I hope they surprise me, I really do. 

Edited by Colorado Rockies 1976

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'7', not surprised Zack got the hook last night, in spite of the pitch count...that 7th was a rough one.  Got the big DP pitch when he needed it. 

 

ERA:  3.55

FIP:  5.17

xFIP:  4.79

 

The above would point to a regression coming, and with the formula for FIP being hard on those on who give up HRs and BBs, easy to see why Zack's FIP is going to be bad (7 HRs and 23 BB allowed in 45.2 IP...those are both bad numbers).  I'm hoping it's more of a case that Zack has enjoyed a lot of good fortune (about as much as anyone could expect) to date, and that, through improvement (he did look terrific for much of yesterday's start), Zack staves off the down period his FIP is practically screaming will be coming.

 

Fow what it's worth, though all of Zack's numbers are puffed up by good luck, his last five starts show some progress (this is admittedly optimistic data snooping on my part):

 

29.2 IP, 24 H, 12 R, 9 ER, 13 BB, 23 K, 4 HR, 3-0 record, 2.73 ERA     

Edited by Colorado Rockies 1976

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I can't believe CR is using FIP and xFIP; I thought I'd never see the day, wow. :P

 

I'm not surprised he's had issues with walks but I expected him to miss more bats - his K% right now is 18.3%; league average is 19.7%. Admittedly, it's stupid to even break the small sample size down even more but his numbers vs lefties are worth monitoring. As of right now:

 

vs LHB: 12 BB, 13 K, .258/.372/.492

vs RHB: 11 BB, 23 K, .200/.294/.330

 

It doesn't help that his changeup is non-existent (4% of his repertoire per BrooksBaseball) and he doesn't throw his curveball all that often either (9%). 

Edited by nmigliore

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I was NEVER anti-sabes nmig...more in how they're presented...it's like I've always said, I think sometimes they're used to twist/warp the truth a little.  But I've also always said that they can be helpful in fleshing out traditional stats or showing why they can be misleading.

 

Wheeler is a great example...if you weren't watching his games, a pure traditional stat guy might see Zack's 4-1, 3.55 ERA through eight starts and say "Wow, he's really pitching well."  I can counter that he's been pretty lucky.  The pure traditional guy might come back with "How can you say that, he's only given up 38 hits in 45.2 IP!"  Then I can point out multiple things, like Zack somehow keeping opponents' BA with RISP low (is that because Zack is just awesome with runners on or because he's had some luck?), the fact that he's allowing a fairly high number of baserunners, that guys who give up HRs and BBs tend to have that come back to bite them eventually, and how his FIP and xFIP illustrate that.

 

Re: the swings and misses...as good as he was yesterday, I forget who it was, but in the fifth inning someone worked a walk, and fouled off a lot of balls...I remember thinking "Man, can't Zack just get this guy to swing and miss?"

Edited by Colorado Rockies 1976

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If anyone's wondering why RA Dickey is struggling, look no further than some of the numbers from last season to this one:

 

2012: 233.2 IP, 54 BB, 24 HR

2013: 140.2 IP, 50 BB, 24 HR

 

His ERA as a Met:  2.95

Everywhere else:  5.26

 

I know there's reasons that factor into the higher ERA everywhere else (American League, not having mastered his knuckler yet, etc), but it's truly amazing how much better he was as a Met than for the other teams he has pitcher for.

Edited by Colorado Rockies 1976

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