From The Desk...


Good morning.

An abbreviated report this morning due to travelling issues.

How Do You Feel About This Ball  Down the Middle? –

This is kind of a form of the automated-strike-zone question. Four and a half years ago, I asked the audience how it felt about pitch-framing. To my surprise, 61% of respondents said they like that framing is a skill that matters. I’d assumed back then that the FanGraphs readers would’ve been all aboard the automation train. This is like an updated version of the same poll, to see if opinions have shifted. But this is also narrowly about a specific kind of bad pitch-framing. It’s about bad pitch-framing that occurs as a consequence of mixed signals. In your ideal game of baseball, should the Red Sox be penalized for miscommunication, or is the miscommunication irrelevant given that the actual pitch thrown was a good breaking ball over the plate?

Mack – If I was a pitching coach of a lower level pipeline team, I would try to emphasis to my pitchers that their main goal is to throw a pitch that starts out down the middle of the plate but doesn’t wind up there. THEY are the unhittable pitchers.

Baseball America (behind firewall) on Ronny Mauricio

Mauricio whips the barrel through the zone with a loose, easy swing from both sides of the plate, keeping his long arms inside the ball well to make frequent contact with impact. Mauricio already shows the ability to hammer the ball from both sides of the plate, and with plenty more room to fill out, he could develop plus or better future power.

Mack – They had him as the 2nd most talented player in the GCL League. When was the last time we had the 2nd anything in the pipeline.
This kid has a long way to go but you do have to appreciate what he has done already.


Tom Brennan said...

I hope Ron Mauricio is in full season ball at age 18 in 2019, as Gimenez did before him - Gimenez made the leap straight from the DSL.

Balls that are strikes for the first 58 feet before exiting the strike zone are the difference between good pitchers and meatball servers.

Dodgers - Red Sox. Next October, Mets against Red Sox?

bgreg98180 said...

For all those people that might try to make a case that Manny Machado is selfish and not a good team mate.....

Look at last night's game.
1st inning.... Machado lays down a bunt (Yes, a BUNT!!) for a base hit that resulted in Bellinger's home run worth 2 runs and putting the Dodgers ahead for the rest of the series winning game.

Selfish? Bad team mate? Poor situational hitter?
Not last night.

Eddie Corona said...

The only question about machado bunting is I remember when they used to rip Beltran for bunting too...

Mack Ade said...

morning guys

Got in late last night. Thanks for putting up with my sub-level posting this past week.

I've changed my mind on Machado.

He is young and very talented.

I would take him in a heartbeat.

Mike Freire said...

I want pitchers with a low WHIP, meaning that they don't put an excess of baserunners on every inning......that leads to high pitch counts and short outings. In turn, your bullpen gets burned out and you finish in fourth place. I love Zack's turnaround, but he used to drive me insane with his 110 pitch outings that only covered 4 or 5 innings. Ugh......

As far as Machado is concerned, I would love to have him in my lineup (at 3B), but will he justify the costs (i.e. roughly 20% of the overall payroll)? We have a lot of young talent that will need to get paid in the next couple of years, by the way. Not saying he won't be worth it, just that it will be a HUGE commitment and if it fails, then it sets us back another five years (like DW).

I would prefer to use the 35 million per year to address other positions, like Catcher, Center Field and the Bullpen. I may be in the minority, but I still see Amed as our future at 3B, alongside Gimenez at SS.

That Adam Smith said...

I’m generally pretty skeptical about spending huge money on one player. Particularly in a team with a limited payroll. There’s so much that can go wrong with any one guy. Machado is a tough case. So young, so talented. On the downside, it doesn’t appear that ha wants to play the position that he’s best suited to (and that would best fill our need), and he might actually be a bit of an asshole. Do you put most of the team’s limited eggs in this basket for the next, I dunno, 5-10 years?

Maybe, if you’re the Mets, with a three-four year (or so) window with relatively cheap starting pitching and a young inexpensive core, maybe you would offer huge money on a shorter term deal (3 yrs?) and see if you can get him that way. He seeems like the kind of kid who might be confident enough to roll the dice on earning another big contract at 29 yrs old, if he can talk his agent into letting him do it.

Fortunately for the new Mets GM, he or she is unlikely to face this decision, since ownership seems unlikely to make such funds available to them. It’s a fun offseason(for us) thought experiment though. Fans gotta dream, right?

bgreg98180 said...

Offering a 3 yr deal is a classic Wilpon move.

Offer something that has no chance of being accepted in order to be able to claim you made an effort to "save face".

$$ should be of little concern (as long as it is current market value) if Machado is being added along with Realmuto.

Have to commit to acquiring both.

Take a long look at the Mets with those 2 players added.
Look at their ages and the probable results for the next 5 years.

That Adam Smith said...

I’m not arguing that at all. A shorter term offer could as easily be a PR move by the Wilpons as an actual strategy to land him. And you’d likely have to offer a 25% (minimum) per year premium over the best longer-term contract offer to even be taken seriously. Obviously we’d have a great chance to contend next year and for awhile thereafter if you get those two and they’re healthy. Though you really would need to get great results from some of the home grown, as there would be little further investment to be had to fix problems.

Mack Ade said...

Guys -

If I remember correctly, Machado doesn't want to play third anymore.

bgreg98180 said...

Paying him shortstop money......play him at shortstop in 2019.

bill metsiac said...

"Shortstop money ? How many SS's get paid"$30+ mil per?

bill metsiac said...

CF, Mike? As long as Yo is expected back, I wouldn't spend on CF unless Nimmo and/or 4to is traded. We're still paying Bruce, Lag is one of the best CFers around if he stays healthy, and Yo makes it 5.

Do we need 6?

Tom Brennan said...

1. Add 2-3 real pen arms

2. Add a catcher

3. Add a Machado too, if the improbable can be made to happen

4. Compete in the post season

bgreg98180 said...

My apologies. I assumed everyone would realize that I meant a superior offensive force at shortstop.

My fault for being lazy.

bgreg98180 said...

Can not count on Cepsedes or Lagares next year.

If the team is committed to playoff contention next year, they have to plan without them.
If they play, it is a bonus.

Mike Freire said...

You make a good point, Bill about CF in the short term (next year).......but like Bob mentioned above, can we really count on Lagares (always hurt) or Cespedes who is coming off TWO surgeries and may not be back before the ASG next year? I like Nimmo in LF and Conforto in RF as your primary corner OF'ers.

I also think Cespedes will end up in the AL as a DH before too much longer, but that may be wishful thinking on my part.

If you look at the short term future (say the next three years), Lagares, Bruce and likely Cespedes are all gone. You have the aforementioned players in LF and RF, but who will patrol CF? I don't see anyone in the system that will be established by that time, so that is why I would try to find a lock down CF'er sooner, as opposed to later.

bill metsiac said...

As of now, we're paying Bruce for 2 more years, and the expectation is that he will move back to the OF when Smith or Alonso or both take over at 1B.

If the worst-case scenario happens, and both Yo and Lag are unable to play, we have an OF of Bruce-Nimmo-4to. But why assume that this will be the case?

Lag should be able to play at the start of ST. He's scheduled to play Winter ball. And Yo's condition has never been described as a career-ender.

At this point, adding another OFer is a very low priority. If conditions raise the priority level, it will have to be addressed. This is not the time.

Mike Freire said...

Ok......but adding another infielder for an exorbitant cost seems misplaced wnen we have an excess of players there too. My basic point is that we have more pressing needs at other spots on the roster and adding just MM does not make us a contender.

bgreg98180 said...

Machado is better than any infielder option the Mets currently have.

Then use Rosario to get Realmuto.

Frazier is gone after next year.

Flores is reaching the end of his days as a Met.

Infield prospects will need to prove themselves and fight to displace established starters moving forward. (Something Mets have not had for a while)

bill metsiac said...

I agree. Spend the money on pen (especially Closer) and Catcher. Then extend Jake, Thor and Wheels. Now the job is done.

Reese Kaplan said...

The job won't be started until the Three Stooges and Dumb & Dumber finally make a decision on who they want to give limited authority to lead this team.

bill metsiac said...

Ah! The REAL Reese is back. That phony using his name to post optimistic comments must have left. 😏

Anonymous said...

No More Optimistic Posts Reeses. Okay?

What is this anyway an old Lawrence Welk rerun TV hour from the nineteen-seventies? Oh boy.

I think the NY Mets are looking at Vangnugen or something. Maybe it was Van Halen? I forget. Whatever!

What's my biggest fear with any new GM coming in to take that position over?

A: That being new here, they will make too many moves (trying to impress and brand their own team) and send us back to the Mets' Prehistoric Times. Like Casey Stengel days without the wool uni's already. Not kidding.

I say this because to me the transition from 2018 Mets to 2019 Mets is a five key player tweak addition and not anything more really. Here's the four (once again ad nauseam I know) sorry:

1. Peter Alonso 1B
2. Trade for Michael Chavis 3B, or Andres Gimenez shares third base platoon with Todd Frazier.
3. A new left-handed starter to add in with Steven Matz. CC Sabathia will probably be available, maybe JA Happ too if the Yankees do not re-sign.
4. A new closer or set-up man, preferably a left-hander too.
5. A new starting catcher. Realmuto may be tough to obtain because of teams in demand. I might think about someone like Danny Jansen from the Blue Jays. Someone young and still growing but decent enough to start now, in other words.

Mack's Mets © 2012