Archive for January, 2017

Fall in Love Friday: Mariners Bullpen Bachelor

Joseph introduces Tyler to the guys in the 2017 Mariners bullpen. Who has dark secrets? Who has bad tweets? Tyler only has three roses to give. Who will he choose? The answer may surprise you.

JDFC Episode 6 Part 1: Celebrating Edgar Martinez

Joseph and Tyler pay their respects to Andy Marte and Yordano Ventura, two young MLB players who died tragically last Sunday in separate car accidents in the Dominican Republic. Then Joseph and Tyler discuss why the tremendous career of Edgar Martinez deserves an eventual Hall of Fame induction and why he is such a beloved figure in Mariners history.

 

Here is the link to the video of Christian Colon and Danny Duffy at Kaufmann Stadium hugging Royals fans on Sunday:

http://www.kansascity.com/sports/mlb/kansas-city-royals/article128093009.html

Here are just a few (of many) links to some excellent writing about Yordano Ventura:

From Sam Mellinger of The Kansas City Star

From Michael Baumann of The Ringer

From Jeff Passan of Yahoo

From Vahe Gregorian of The Kansas City Star

And here is the link from the Mariners PR department to accompany the announcement on Tuesday that Edgar Martinez would have his Number 11 retired:

https://marinersblog.mlblogs.com/mariners-to-retire-edgar-martinezs-number-11-4522ab24efc9#.i70kactlm

JDFC Episode 5: Who can build the best rotation in the (AL) West?

I am joined, as always, by Joseph Victor for the fifth episode of the Jerry Dipoto podcast. We discuss the Drew Smyly acquisition and its impact on the Mariners rotation and 2017 outlook as a whole, and then we dive into a fun competition: Who can draft the best AL West rotation?

Joseph and I used the depth charts from rosterresource.com to assign dollar values to each starter on each AL West team. We each had exactly $15 to spend, and whichever rotation ends the year with more Fangraphs WAR wins a prize of some sort. Probably a six pack of beer from Georgetown Brewing, considering we both selected a different Georgetown IPA for the recording of this podcast. I swear we are not sponsored by Georgetown. But hey, Georgetown, what say you?

If you want to play the AL West Rotation Draft game, this is the spreadsheet that we used to set the prices for each starting pitcher.

 

Here are the results of our draft (takes place from 24:26-36:55):

Round Joseph ($, projected fWAR scaled to 180 IP) Tyler ($, projected fWAR scaled to 180 IP)
1 Drew Smyly ($2, 2.6) Lance McCullers ($2, 3.6)
2 Cole Hamels ($4, 3.4) James Paxton ($3, 3.4)
3 Jharel Cotton ($1, 2.9) Yu Darvish ($5, 4.5)
4 Felix Hernandez ($5, 3.0) Matt Shoemaker ($3, 3.1)
5 Tyson Ross ($3, 2.9) Andrew Triggs ($2, 1.9)
2016 Cumulative fWAR 6.8 12.5
2017 Projected (Steamer) fWAR 14.8 15.5

Let us know if you give the AL West draft a try. Follow us on twitter @joeyvictor24 and @tylerbradley9. Spread the JDFC word.

Most importantly, Go M’s.

Episode Synopsis

1:50: Jeremy Hutton Birthday shout-out

4:07: Professor Joseph asks a question that is nearly impossible to answer

6:32: A post relevant to the Professor Joseph question

7:25: We discuss the Drew Smyly acquisition and the new outlook for the Mariners rotation

15:02: How do we feel about the players Jerry traded away? Potential Regret?

18:15: A post relevant to the Smyly conversation

19:01: A competition between Jerry Dipoto’s two biggest fans

20:25: An explanation of the competition

23:50: Rules of the Competition

24:51: Joseph’s first selection

25:54: Tyler’s first selection

32:43: I had to refill my drink

33:15: Carlos Pegeuro reference? The game in question.

35:40: Joseph’s last pick

37:20: Tyler’s last pick

38:15: Relevant article to the discussion

39:31: We realize Joseph broke the rules and should therefore be disqualified

40:25-46:05: After drafting from these rotations, what did we learn about the AL West rotation situation?

46:10: Mariners Bullpen Spelling Bee

48:25: We allow Joseph to tell a story about his muse, Mariners prospect Tyler O’Neill

51:20: Based on Steamer Projections, which one of our drafted rotations is projected to win? Joseph is technically projected to lose. Joseph subsequently spits on projections.

Smyly about the 2017 Mariners: Thanks, Jerry

Winning the offseason does not win you a trophy. Winning the offseason leads to bloated expectations and disappointed fanbases. It guts farm systems, exposes flawed rosters, and leads to eventual roster teardowns in future offseasons. With that said, I should be wary of creeping excitement for the 2017 Mariners.

But why am I still excited about Jerry Dipoto and the Mariners?

Dipoto has now traded Taijuan Walker, Alex Jackson, Luiz Gohara, Ryan Yarbrough and Carlos Vargas. If Jerry did not draft him, or if you are a high ceiling/low floor guy, you are likely on a different roster by now. Making a trade is not inherently productive. Hell, firing off jokes like “Jerry Dipoto loves to trade players as much as Joe Biden loves Obama” is easy, but it is also equally terrifying and hilarious for Mariners fans. Is this team actually better because of the thing Jerry does more than anybody in baseball?

The answer seems to be yes. Dipoto has been building a roster with clear desires (desire fits especially well for nabbing Drew Smyly, apparently). After these last three trades (the Mariners netted Yovani Gallardo, Jarrod Dyson, Shae Simmons and Drew Smyly), this roster makes sense with what Jerry has wanted all along. The Mariners have objectively upgraded the rotation, shortstop and the outfield this offseason. They did this without giving up Tyler O’Neill or Kyle Lewis. The team is faster, more athletic and more capable of dealing with underperforming pitching.

Smyly and Dyson are key components to Dipoto’s trade whirlwind and the ultimate potential of this team. Outfield defense and baserunning were atrocious for the Mariners last year Dyson is elite in both areas (Ranks). Dyson, along with Haniger/Heredia/Gamel and Leonys Martin should help the pitchers all season long.

Mallex Smith is so fast that he was a Mariner for less than an hour before he was gone. Getting Smyly in return, a guy with a home run problem but #2/3 starter upside, makes much more sense for this roster than *Mallex does at the moment. Unlike Gallardo/Ariel Miranda/Chris Heston, Smyly is a starter who can push this team to a win total that’s higher than the projections, especially since a Felix Hernandez bounceback season and Hisashi Iwakuma/James Paxton health and sustained effectiveness are not guaranteed.

The Mariners are not winning a trophy because Jerry Dipoto has made 11 trades this offseason. The expectations for this team are still to finally make the playoffs. The fanbase is certainly acquainted with disappointments, so a 2017 failure would be more of the same for the Mariners faithful. The farm system is thin, so this year may be the final chance for this roster to reach the promised land.

But at least the Mariners are in this position. These moves today and last week nudged the Mariners up a couple games in Fangraphs projections, which shows how tight the American League could be. All it took was Madman Jerry D, sitting in that GM suite at Safeco Field, feverishly hounding GM’s across the league to make it happen. If the Mariners miss the playoffs, it will not be because of a roster that did not make sense or because the GM made inconsistent decisions. There is a clear philosophy. If the Mariners miss the playoffs it will be because baseball does not care if your roster makes sense, no matter how hard you try.

*Mallex could be a younger version of Dyson, which would be nice for a future Mariners core with Kyle Lewis and Tyler O’Neill, but fairly reduntant for 2017

JDFC Episode 4: New Friends and a Goodbye to our Mariners Dad

Joseph Victor and yours truly, Tyler Bradley, discuss the Gallardo/Smith and Dyson/Karns trades. We recorded this last night before his other two trades today, but luckily most of the discussion remains topical. I also rummage through old Joseph tweets and we introduce the Professor Joseph segment.

 

Music Credits

“My Oh My” — Macklemore and Ryan Lewis
“New Friends” — Pinegrove

Follow us on twitter @tylerbradley9 and @joeyvictor24