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Ron Burgandy

MotownSports Fan
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Everything posted by Ron Burgandy

  1. Details on the terms of the agreement: Detroit Tigers' Prince Fielder to earn big money up front - ESPN
  2. Thanks. I hadn't seen your blog post yet. The only question I'd raise with it is your assumption that Miggy will be 20 runs below average at 3B. I'd say the smarter money is on -25 to -30. That would cost us another .5 - 1 expected win.
  3. If Miggy does go from -5 UZR to -25, that's roughly a difference of two losses per year, if I remember the conversion correctly. That essentially negates the expected improvement we get from VMart to Prince...
  4. Thanks, I agree that that's probably a better way of presenting the same data.
  5. Thinking more about Miggy's defensive transition to 3B... Last year Mark Reynolds was widely considered the worst defensive 3B in the league, and perhaps one of the worst of all time. He posted a -30.3 UZR/150 in 984.1 innings played at the position. Interestingly, he also played 375.2 innings at 1B, compiling a -17.4 UZR/150. So he was roughly 43% worse at 3B than at 1B. On the other end of the spectrum, Kevin Youkalis last played a significant number of innings at both 1B and 3B in 2009. In that season he posted a 19.2 UZR/150 at 1B, and a -4.9 UZR/150 at 3B. So he was nearly 5 times worse at 3B. Similarly, Aubrey Huff played at least 200 innings at both 1B and 3B in 2004, and was nearly 6 times worse at 3B than 1B (23.5 UZR/150 at 1B, 4.8 UZR/150 at 3B). Over the last two years Miggy has averaged -5.1 UZR/150 at 1B. If you assume for the sake of argument that his transition from 1B to 3B will approximate Reynolds', then you'd project him to compile a -7.5 UZR/150 at 3B. I think everyone would take that in an instant, and would agree it would make Miggy the best 3B in baseball. Even if he was 100% worse as a defensive 3B than a 1B, he'd still come in at only -10.2 UZR/150, or approximately Aramis Ramirez level bad. However, if he comes closer to Kevin Youkalis's or Aubrey Huff's transition, and is five to six times worse at 3B than 1B, then you'd have a -25.5 to -30.6 UZR/150. That would make him at least the 3rd worst full-time 3B in baseball since 2002, competing with only Reynolds (2011) and Braun (2007). I'm not sure you can carry that level of defense for an entire season, let alone from 2012-14. Admittedly, this analysis has to be taken with more than a grain of salt. For one thing, the sample sizes on Reynolds, Youkalis, and Huff at both positions in the same season are too small. For another, there is no guarantee that Miggy will follow either of their paths. But all in all, this small sample confirmed my belief that it is very difficult to gauge how Cabrera will transition to 3B. It is possible that the defensive dropoff will not be significant enough to necessitate playing Miggy at DH, but it's also quite possible that he will be historically bad at 3B. Just food for thought...
  6. I get it if you are looking at this deal as maximizing our shot from 2012-2014. In that case, our best lineup would have Miggy-Price-VMart 3-4-5. To do that, Miggy has to play the field. Add to that his desire not to DH, and I don't think it's crazy to go into 2012 trying to work him into the field gradually. It may decrease our odds of winning in 2012, but I think it's the move you have to make to maximize the value of the deal for the next 3-4 years. You at least have to try, even if DH is open this season.
  7. Seriously? Here's what I said, verbatim: I think that's pretty clear, but since it apparently isn't clear for you, I'll spell out what I was saying. I think there is a pretty good chance that Fielder's production decreases significantly across the back half of his contract, i.e., during his age 32-36 seasons. That means that he'll begin slipping a little in his early thirties, and more so in his mid-thirties. I don't think that's all that controversial a statement, but some here have been suggesting tha tthere is little reason to believe he's production will suffer during the later years of the contract. I disagree. Time will tell. I never said, and don't necessarily believe, that Prince will fall off the table at age 32 (although it's always possible). But I don't think he'll be putting up 850+ OPSes over the last 3-4 years of the deal. Hopefully that won't matter, and we'll have won one or more championships by then.
  8. Actually, I said age 32-36 seasons. I never said I thought Prince would fall off the face of the earth at 32. And to correct your other post, Prince is entering his age 28 season. If he were 26, as you stated, then this deal would be more attractive.
  9. I agree. Now that Prince is signed, I definitely think that we need to give Miggy every chance to prove he can play 3B. Again, all I'm saying is that it's a riskier transition than many had been acknowledging here.
  10. Because I honestly believe it's a questionable decision. If Prince was a guy that fit this roster better (say Matt Kemp), then I'd be over the moon. I just don't know that Prince Fielder is the guy that this team should have gone all in on, for a number of reasons. Just because it's a big signing doesn't make it one of the greatest.
  11. My point is that if it were so easy to move from 1B to 3B, and if 3B defense were are trivial as some are arguing, then why wouldn't some team before have moved a stellar offensive 1B to 3B, in order to upgrade their team? Yes this is an unusual situation, but if it were really as simple as a good-to-great offensive 1B would be the best offensive 3B, and any defensive shortcomings will be more than made up at the plate, then you'd have seen someone make this type of move before.
  12. That's all fair. I wasn't being clear. I just meant that some here are almost completely disregarding the risk of Prince declining significantly on the back half of this contract. I was just saying that I don't think that Tigers fans are better positioned to project Fielder's productivity in his age 32-36 seasons, as JBK suggested. Again, that doesn't mean that that's necessarily a reason not to make the deal. But it's just another area where I think the consensus here is probably overly optimistic.
  13. If the transition from 1B to 3B were that easy, it'd have been done before. As the second FanGraphs article pointed out, this move simply hasn't been made in the last 30+ years by a below average defensive 1B so far removed from playing 3B. Look, I'm hoping it works out for the best. And I actually agree with Olney, Knobler, etc., that Miggy's odds of success are better than the national media believes. All I'm saying is that his odds of being able to cut it defensively at 3B at this stage of his career aren't as sure a thing as many here are saying (let alone those who believe he will be average defensively...). There is a significant risk (say 33%) that he won't be able to cut it. That's all I'm saying.
  14. I don't think you're comprehending my argument, if you think I'm proving your point...
  15. I don't consider them to be particularly sophisticated, from a stat-based point of view. Again, that doesn't mean that their opinion is worthless or wrong, but I just think that this deal carries a heck of a lot more risk than most here believe.
  16. I completely disagree with this. None of us have seen Miggy play 3B since 2008. None of us have any basis in fact for determining how well he can play the position (me included). Any speculation about his defensive proficiency is 100% speculation and/or hope. So I don't think that Tigers fans have an advantage in this regard by watching this team more closely than neutral analysts. And that is doubly true for projecting Prince Fielder's value through 2020.
  17. Put differently, I don't think I've seen a neutral, reasonably sophisticated analyst yet that is out and out praising this deal anywhere near the extent it's being praised here. That's not to say that that automatically makes the consensus here wrong, and the FanGraphs, etc., take correct. But the analysis here is significantly more optimistic than that which most neutral observers are offering, both with respect to Miggy's ability to make the shift to 3B, as well as the odds that this contract comes close to paying off for the long haul. Call me crazy, but that's at least a little disconcerting, even if we all want this to work out for the best.
  18. There's a big difference between an ability to field a bunt at 1B and 3B.
  19. That's my point. I get that a lot of people here don't think the downside will be that bad. But I just think that's based more on optimism and excitement rather than facts and analysis. It's hard to make the type of move Cabrera is going to be making. Again, that doesn't mean it's doomed to fail. But the downside risk is greater than most here are acknowledging.
  20. I think a lot of the defensive debate hinges on just how bad Miggy is at 3B. If he's a bad defensive 3B, but still within the realm of reason (think a little worse than Aramis Ramirez last year), then I'd agree that is our best move. But if he's historically bad (think significant worse than Mark Reynolds), then I'm not sure that the pluses outweigh the minuses. It's easy to say he'll only cost us X number of runs, but things don't work quite so cleanly in the real world. Those extra outs extend innings, discouraging and wearing out your pitching staff. Also, if Miggy is historically bad at 3B, then you will see a significantly higher number of bunt base hits dropped down in his direction. The fact that there were relatively few bunts last year isn't really significant, as teams will change their strategy if they see a huge black hole at the hot corner. All that having been said, I do think it's possible that Miggy can be serviceable at 3B. If he can, this is a huge upgrade. But I think the downside is greater and more likely than many on here are willing to admit right now.
  21. ZiPS projections for Prince in Detroit through 2020: Detroit Tigers come to the rescue for Prince Fielder - ESPN
  22. I'm talking about the Miggy @ 3B 2008 experience, not the team overall.
  23. If that proves to be the case then I'm all on board. I'm just still gun-shy after the 2008 experience, so I'm not as convinced.
  24. I wasn't saying that. I just don't know that Prince is the right guy to go all in on. He isn't a great fit with this roster. I'm not going to worry about 2016-19 if I think that this is a clear cut winning move. But there are a lot of question marks left here, which isn't the type of move I mortgage the future for, personally.
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