Friday, February 09, 2007

Paulino's defense

Is Ronny Paulino a good-fielding backstop, an average-fielding backstop, or a below-average fielding backstop? He appears to have a reputation for good and a reputation for bad. I wonder what's your opinion . . .

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Starters seven through nine

In his Q & A, Dejan Kovacevic catches us up on Burnett (ready to pitch), Van Benschoten (maybe ready to pitch), and Bullington (has not pitched since late 2005).

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

2007 playing time estimates for Pirates, a.k.a. the Pirates sudoku

Non-pitcher Pirates enjoy about 5715 plate appearances each season. Recently they tend to be distributed, from an average high of 699 PA to an average low of 652 PA, along the positions in this order: CF, SS, LF, RF, 1B, 3B, C, 2B. You people will recognize that pattern as the typical McClendon/Tracy lineup.

Here are the players now on the 40-man roster with PA estimates by moi.

In center I see Duffy, Bautista, and McLouth getting time. At short, Wilson and Sanchez. In left, Bay and Bautista. In right, Nady, Doumit, Bautista, and McLouth. At first, LaRoche and Doumit. At third and second, Sanchez and Castillo, with Bautista backing up at third and Sanchez backing up at second. Catching, Paulino with Cota on Sundays. McLouth, Gerut, Cota, Rajai D., Eldred, and Doumit get some to a smidge of PT from a bench-like miscellaneous category which brings the YTD non-pitching PA total to 5715.

Here are the totals, in descending order, from most to least PA. Wilson and Bay, 650. Sanchez 600. Castillo and LaRoche, 550. Paulino and Duffy, 500. Bautista, 450 350. Nady, 425. Doumit, 350 250. Cota, 200. Jose Hernandez, 200. McLouth, 190. Gerut, 50. Eldred and Rajai D., 25.

Any surprises there for you? I will amend or defend whatever estimates you question in the comments.

... later ... updated to include 200 PA for Jose Hernandez. This is why the Jose Hernadez signing depresses people. You know he's going to play. He would be good insurance for the insurance. He would fine as a backup to Bautista and Doumit, the two guys who have less PT so Jose can get his 200 PA. But you know he won't back them up. So the team pours valuable playing time into this old veteran and willfully blocks the developing of two somewhat promising younger players.

If Jose Hernandez (and Danny Kolb, for that matter) are truly going to bring much in the way of "veteran leadership" and/or "intangibles," then hire them as coaches. I will acknowledge that some of the players gave credit to Jose Mesa - a similar signing - for teaching them how to be relievers. It could be the case that players like this have an unseen benefit for helping younger players to better realize their potential. But for every Mesa signing, there's at least one Burnitz signing. Or so it seems.

Armas geekery

Stats Geek cheers the Armas signing. All that looks right to me. This is a concern of mine, the need for a long line of starters, as you see, say, here.

Looking at that post, it's curious that Burnett and Van Benschoten are stuck in the same place on the depth chart. Three years later, they are still #7 starters.

Bill Hall makes a lot of money

I found the news of the Bill Hall contract shocking.

And I've long been a fan of Hall, as this March 2004 post illustrates.

Has anyone done of study of these arbitration-and-beyond contracts? The odds that the Brewers get "a good deal" on Hall probably do not outweigh the odds that (a) unable to play often (because of injury) or (B) that he regresses to something like cheap-replacement level. I say probably. I do not know.

Monday, February 05, 2007

the Kolb signing

It's just a minor-league contract, yes, but can you see the Pirates not carrying him on Opening Day - even if he's not pitching well in March?

I can't. So I'm not persuaded the contract makes much difference in any evaluation of the signing.

Big, powerful-looking big man in right, hitting fifth

The PG has this bit of news about the Carribbean World Series.