Monday, March 23, 2015

Transactions Analysis: The First Act of the 2015 Draft

Part of this year's draft is in the books, thanks to everyone moving at the pace of a cadaver.  But that hasn't stopped us from analyzing the shit show of the first two rounds.  Up for a resuscitation, Teddy?  (El Angelo)

Wait, what? Is Pat Neshek still available?

Also, in a fit of communitarian madness, I joined a softball team this year. We had our first practice yesterday before the draft. Today I can neither bend over to tie my shoes nor lift my arm to comb my hair. I have managed to solve those problems using, respectively, loafers and baldness, but it was a close-run thing.  In summary, don't get old. (Teddy)

1.  The Left Sharks: Andrew McCutchen, OF, Pittsburgh.

If the second best player in baseball on a rising team is available with the first pick, you take him and move along to more difficult matters.  (El Angelo)

Yep. (Teddy)

2.  Who Run Bartertown?: Jose Bautista, OF, Toronto.

This team needed to reload on its offense after last year's surprising out of the money finish, so it takes the best available hitter in Joey Bats.  I'm not sure this guy will be on the team in 3 years, but with the Trout-E5-HanRam core already in place, you're clearly in win-now mode, so by all means, go with the slugger.  (El Angelo)

I am not as high on Bats because he has only played three full seasons out of the past six. But he'll produce if healthy, and this manager has proven that he can work the waiver wire well enough to mitigate the downside risk. (Teddy)

3.  Paging Dr. Rumack: Max Scherzer, SP, Washington.

Since Cano didn't fit the shape of this roster, it comes down to whether you'd like an aging, elite 3B or a stud pitcher moving to the National League.  I think he made the right call.  (El Angelo)

Yeah, I think Scherzer was the clear pick here. Don't worry, I'll get meaner soon. (Teddy)

4.  PV=nrt: Madison Bumgarner, SP, San Francisco.

It's probably the right pick, but Bumgarner scares me a little bit off the 500 innings he threw last year.  Then again, my team has lost aces to Tommy John surgery in successive seasons, so I'm probably not the best person to ask on pitcher risk.  (El Angelo)

Hooray for me! (Teddy)

5.  flying malaysians:  Robinson Cano, 2B, Seattle.

I feel like every year we find that the guy drafting 5th has the easiest pick to make and never fucks it up.  (El Angelo)

There is definitely something to be said for having the last pick in the first tier of players. I mean, we all love the illusion of agency, but it's also nice to just scoop up whatever shiny object falls to you and move on to planning how you're going to f--k up the second round. (Teddy)

6.  Jazzy Rural Grammar:  Yadier Molina, C, St. Louis.

Four years after Tucker took Geovany Soto in this spot, Ben takes a defense-first catcher coming off an injury-ridden season.  It can't work out much worse than the Soto pick.  I actually think all the available catchers are roughly of the same caliber, so why not wait until the 3rd round to take McCann?  (El Angelo)

I got my shot off on this one in chat, so we'll make this a data post. Last three years: OBP: .373, .359, .333; GP: 138, 136, 110; HR: 22, 12, 7. I mean, literally every statistic is trending downward over the past three years. No, wait, I'm wrong--I found one that's flat!

K: 55, 55, 55

That's something, right? (Teddy)

7.  Beltway Bulldogs:  Yoenis Cespedes, OF, Detroit.

I've never been as high on this guy as others, but he does contribute in 4 categories and generally takes the field in for 150 or so games, so there's something to be said for consistency.  Low-upside, low-downside.  I'm just not sure if that's where the team that's rebuilding should be heading.  (El Angelo)

Just when Cespedes had freed himself from the power-destroying vortex of Oakland and set up shop in friendly Fenway, he gets shipped to Detroit. Comerica has actually played neutral the past few years, but it's not as soft of a landing spot as you'd like. The hope for BB is that Detroit puts Cespedes after Miggy and lets him chit with runners on all year. That should at least let him keep his disproportionate RBI production up. (Teddy)

8.  Torn Ligaments:  Carlos Gonzalez, OF, Colorado.

The team named Torn Ligaments took a guy who's injury prone?  Why not just send a black cat covered with anthrax to his locker?  (El Angelo)

At least it's not a tumor. Oh wait, it was a tumor. Well, at least it didn't have tentacles. Oh wait, it did have tentacles. (Ten years ago that last link would have gone to some genuinely heinous site; now it goes to USA Today. Ah well.) (Teddy)

9.  Wu Tang Financial (from Charming Sociopaths): Adrian Beltre, 3B, Texas.

The pick's spot on for a team that needs a 3B, and the extra price of a 4th round pick is worth it.  Solid all around.  (El Angelo)

Yeah, nice value in this spot. He's another guy who probably won't be on the team in three years, but we're at the point in the draft where you have to start picking the warts you're willing to live with. (Teddy)

10.  Charming Sociopaths (from Wu Tang Financial): Jason Heyward, OF, St. Louis.

This was the guy I wanted all along, plus I received a pick for him that became Yan Gomes, so I'm pleased.  I defer to my colleague on whether I should be pleased.  (El Angelo)

Owning Heyward is a very particular experience. I feel like the Germans need to coin an extremely long compound word to describe it, with the component words being hope, confusion, melancholy, and something racist because this is Germany we're talking about.

That said, I was hoping he'd fall to me in the next round, because I have talked myself into his breakout yet again this year. It just feels like St. Louis is going to baptize him in fried ravioli and he's going to magically put it all together. (Teddy)  

11.  Le Dupont Torkies: Joc Pederson, OF, Albuquerque Isotopes.

A prospect in the first round!  This is historic.  Let's all acknowledge how unique this is.  We will ignore the fact that LA has at least 3 OFs ahead of him at the moment.  (El Angelo)

I think Pederson will actually break camp with the team. It's not like the new GM has any emotional investment in Andre Ethier, and they already shipped out Matt Kemp.

Although I guess this raises the question of whether the fact that Pederson is not really a prospect makes this pick more or less defensible. I sort of like it--it's similar to what I did last year reaching for Anthony Rizzo, and that turned out to be about the only good pick I made. (Teddy) 

12.  The Spam Avengers:  Chris Davis, 1B, Baltimore.

This circles back to the Joey Bats pick - if you're probably in the final year of your champion core, you may as well shoot high.  Davis could possibly be a sinkhole again, but taking a middling outfielder here doesn't sound as appealing.  (El Angelo)

Yeah, why not go for some upside. As we'll see below, the alternatives were a bunch of pretty good arms, which don't go that far in a league full of very good arms. (Teddy)

13.  Torn Ligaments:  James Shields, SP, San Diego.

Moving to a pitcher's park and good for 200 above-average innings.  Shields isn't a cornerstone but if you treat him as a 3rd starter, you're doing fine.  (El Angelo)

I'm a little concerned that San Digo has nobody who can catch the ball, which could lead to a record number of triples in that park. But really, Shields/Gio/Fister are pretty much a coin flip. (Teddy)

14.  Beltway Bulldogs:  Gio Gonzalez, SP, Washington.

I've never been as high on Gio G as many others, but that team is going to win 100 games this year, so why the hell not?  (El Angelo)

Every time I've slagged Gio in print he has gone on to post a great season. So may the road rise up to meet you, Gio!

You still have a dumb name, though. (Teddy).

15.  Jazzy Rural Grammar:  Elvis Andrus, SS, Texas.

Move over Alex Gordon and Rickie Weeks, Andrus is our newest winner for best player who's never, ever kept.  Teddy, name this trophy for me.  (El Angelo)

I don't think it's a trophy at all; I think it's a participation ribbon. (Teddy)

16.  Flying Malaysians:  Doug Fister, SP, Washington.

We can probably just copy everything I wrote about Gio G and put it here.  I still haven't figured out why Detroit traded him for a box of donuts.  (El Angelo)

I have it on good authority that the 2013 Detroit media guide inadvertently left the "u" out of his first name. The resulting PETA firestorm forced management's hand. (Teddy)

17.  PV=nRT:  Kyle Seager, 3B, Seattle.

Put it this way - I considered taking him at 9 and I already have Longoria.  Love the pick. (El Angelo)

With no kept OF, I had to shuffle the deck a bit once the back half of the first round devolved into an OF run. I don't love Chris Carter, but getting him without weakening my IF was nice. I think Seager would be a better fantasy asset than Cano in the (admittedly unlikely) event that Seattle ever switched them in the batting order. (Teddy)

18.  Paging Dr. Rumack:  Jay Bruce, OF, Cincinnati.

I had him last year and he was fucking horrible.  Shitty, shitty player.  (El Angelo)

I'll be honest: I had him circled for my third-round pick as a bounce-back play. He won't be that bad again. (Teddy) 

19.  Who Run Bartertown?: Koji Uehara, RP, Boston.

Taking closers is a dicey proposition to begin with, taking one that's possibly starting the year on the disabled list is doubling down.  Uehara is a nice pitcher, but it's a lot of risk to embrace this early on.  (El Angelo)

There is no way that I'm going to say anything negative about Koji. So . . .

20.  The Left Sharks: Huston Street, RP, Anaheim.

Oy vey.  (El Angelo)

We almost made it out of the second round without a questionable closer run! We were so close, people! (Teddy)

21.  Charming Sociopaths:  Marcell Ozuna, OF, Florida.

There was absolutely nobody inspiring on the board, so I just went highest upside.  I figured a 24 year old who hits a boatload of home runs fits that category.  (El Angelo)

As proof that there was nobody inspiring left, I note that you picked a guy who's the third-best OF on his own real-life team. By that measure, he's Curtis Granderson. (Teddy)

22.  Wu Tang Financial:  Michael Wacha, SP, St. Louis.

He went 12th last year.  Let's hope this trend doesn't continue for him.  (El Angelo)

Somebody remember to take him 32d next year. Two events are a coincidence; three are a trend. (Teddy)

23.  The Left Sharks (from Le Dupont Torkies): Phil Hughes, SP, Minnesota.

When your rationale was that he finally had a good year, you're probably reaching.  But it's late in the second round.  The number of obviously good players left was zero.  (El Angelo)

I actually liked this pick. Although that's more a sign of the diminished expectations in this part of the draft than any real endorsement. (Teddy)

24.  The Spam Avengers: Charlie Blackmon, OF, Colorado.

The owner thought his name was Chris.  That pretty much sums up everything you need to know about this pick and player.  (El Angelo)

Quick, somebody B-Ref the name "Chris Blackmon". With some luck, he'll turn out to have been a Short Stop for the 1895 Providence Grays and we can foist yet another dead guy onto a roster in this league. (Teddy)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I wanted to take Seager as well - if Beltre had not been available