The Futility Infielder

A Baseball Journal by Jay Jaffe I'm a baseball fan living in New York City. In between long tirades about the New York Yankees and the national pastime in general, I'm a graphic designer.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

 

Notta Lotta

Not a lot going on above the surface here, but I've got a couple of things cooking in the lab, in between trips to the doctor to determine the extent to which my once-repaired right shoulder is in need of further attention following a skiing mishap. Thursday's the big day for the reading of the MRI; just because my father is a radiologist doesn't mean I can read the films myself, even if this is the second time around.

Anyway, the main project in the lab is DIPS 2005. Given that the DIPS 2.0 formula is now on its fifth go-round (fourth at this site), I've wavered on whether to proceed with publishing the numbers, a deliberation that conveniently coincided with the chaos of Book Season. But now that daylight has returned, I've concluded that there's a considerable value of maintaining a DIPS hub here -- my Tufts U. pals, among others, seem to appreciate it -- to round up the latest work in the field.

This year's review will include a look at David Gassko's DIPS 3.0 which was introduced at Hardball Times in August and is reportedly revisted in their annual book, which I have on order at the moment. DIPS 3.0 uses batted ball types (ground ball, fly ball, line drive) to project ERA, and it appears to do a very nice job of doing so with current season performance. However, my preliminary investigations as to its year-to-year predictive powers appear to indicate that it's no better than DIPS 2.0 at that task. Gassko admittedly had focused on the system's current-season utility rather than its utility as a projection tool. I'll be interested to see what he has to say in the annual, which gets an exhaustive comb-thru by my unrelated namesake, Chris Jaffe, at that steel-cage battleground, Baseball Think Factory. Jaffe length, indeed.

Also brewing in the lab, yet somewhat derailed by the demands of the stat crew putting together Baseball Prospectus 2006, is a PECOTA-based look at the two pitchers (Edwin Jackson and Chuck Tiffany) whom the Dodgers traded to Tampa Bay over the weekend for relievers Danys Baez and Lance Carter. Perhaps the most noteworthy aspect of the trade -- aside from speculation about the health of closer Eric Gagne -- is that Dodger GM Ned Colletti finally broke the seal on the bevy of prospects the team has in its system. In overhauling the team via a flurry of moves last month, Colletti had, surprisingly, resisted trading prospects for veterans. It was bound to end sooner or later, and while I'm not particularly impressed by the returns -- there's enough meh in Baez to make me surprised he didn't wind up on the Mets, and don't even get me started about the craptacularity of Carter -- I don't think this is a backbreaking deal for the Dodgers either. They're dealing from strength, looking for the extra couple of wins that might win them the weak NL West, and there are millions of reasons why that's a good idea.

Jackson, you'll recall, outdueled Randy Johnson in his big-league debut, which also happened to be his 20th birthday. But in the two-plus years since, he's been unable to harness that potential he gave us a glimpse of; his big-league ERA stands at 5.50 through 75.3 innings. He's bombed so badly in the Dodgers' Triple-A outpost of hell known as Las Vegas, with ERAs straight off of a Boeing assembly line, that the Dodgers sent him back to Double-A last year. His velocity is down, his mechanics are messed up, his confidence is shot. He needs a fresh start, and while as a Dodger fan it pains me to see him go, I wish the kid the best. Seriously.

Both Rich Lederer and Bryan Smith have done a nice job of covering this at Baseball Analysts, as has Jon Weisman at Dodger Thoughts, so I'll save my bullets for another day. The points I'd stick by for the moment are that among Dodger pitching prospects, Jackson and Tiffany would rate well behind Chad Billingsley, Jon Broxton, and Scott Elbert, and that the LA organization's player development system continues to be hampered by the fact that Vegas is brutal for pitchers. It's not too far off from sending a guy to Coors Field to learn how to pitch. Tiffany -- an Extreme (capital E, as in 0.58 groundball/flyball ratio according to Baseball America) flyball pitcher -- is the kind of player whose value after going through the Vegas meatgrinder (likely in 2007, given that he spent '05 at Vero Beach) could be severely lessened.

Anyway, here's hoping my data ship comes in soon, so that I can add something a bit more substantial to the discussion. For those of you with a subscription, at least...

Comments: Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]



Links to this post:

Create a Link



<< Home

Archives

June 2001   July 2001   August 2001   September 2001   October 2001   November 2001   December 2001   January 2002   February 2002   March 2002   April 2002   May 2002   June 2002   July 2002   August 2002   September 2002   October 2002   November 2002   December 2002   January 2003   February 2003   March 2003   April 2003   May 2003   June 2003   July 2003   August 2003   September 2003   October 2003   November 2003   December 2003   January 2004   February 2004   March 2004   April 2004   May 2004   June 2004   July 2004   August 2004   September 2004   October 2004   November 2004   December 2004   January 2005   February 2005   March 2005   April 2005   May 2005   June 2005   July 2005   August 2005   September 2005   October 2005   November 2005   December 2005   January 2006   February 2006   March 2006   April 2006   May 2006   June 2006   July 2006   August 2006   September 2006   October 2006   November 2006   December 2006   January 2007   February 2007   March 2007   April 2007   May 2007   June 2007   July 2007   August 2007   September 2007   October 2007   November 2007   December 2007   January 2008   February 2008   March 2008   April 2008   May 2008   June 2008   July 2008   August 2008   September 2008   October 2008   November 2008   December 2008   January 2009   February 2009   March 2009   April 2009   May 2009   June 2009   July 2009   August 2009   September 2009   October 2009   November 2009   December 2009   January 2010   February 2010   March 2010   April 2010   May 2010  

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Subscribe to Posts [Atom]