Don't be shellfish...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+

As another baseball season winds down, we have a chance to reflect on our own journey in this wonderful game. Perhaps you, the reader, ponder of such things like — What did I do wrong? What did I do right? Why did I listen to Jaywrong? Or, better yet, why didn’t I listen to Jaywrong? Right? RIGHT! Regardless, we’re here to look back on the first year of the Bear or Bull series, and walk that same line of reflection and get an idea of how everything looks as the 2013 pieces fall into place. How did the process work, and did it do a good job? Are there ways to make the analysis better? Was I Jayright? Was I Jaywrong? More importantly, was I Jaysexy? Trick question, I’m always Jaysexy. Maybe we’ll learn something on the way. Or maybe we’ll just go over to the Football side of Razzball. My question is, why not both?

R.A. Dickey — I saw one hard bull Dickey. (Post can be found here.) Also called ‘An Ode to Dickey’ in some circles, I think it was obvious that I was crushing on this guy. As the year wore on and nothing I said came true, we can at least come away with the solid conclusion that none of this is my fault. Or maybe I’m just saying that. Look, I can’t foresee injuries, and that is an absolute factor in why Dickey has gone from a legitimate ace to hide all the breakable items in the house when he starts because I’m going to drop kick everything every time he gives up a home run. If we’re keeping count, that’s 31 things I drop kicked this season… so far. Look, I know I can be stubborn, but he is slowly returning to form. The velocity has been creeping back up in the last month, and we shouldn’t completely disregard Dickey in terms of next season. As for me, I’m sticking with him, since, in just a couple of months, he’ll be considered an under-the-radar pitcher for 2014 and I can find my redemption then.

Matt Harvey — Was a bull. After injury, now bull shiitake mushrooms. (Post can be found here.) Everything was going great until elbowcalypse happened. I’m not sure what else to say here. I’m pretty sure he’ll be okay, but we’re looking at around two years until we can revisit any analysis. So let’s just agree that this was a good call.

CC Sabathia — I chose bear, but one who could still do things. Like eating. Always was good at that. (Post can be found here.) I want to call Charleston Chew, but I don’t know, that’s just me. Carsten Charles just seems so… frat boyish. Anyhow, here’s what I said about him at the time:

“Personally, I’m more tempted just keeping him this year and riding out the bumps. Afterall, he was drafted at a tier where it will be almost impossible to get that value back, and while he won’t be the same CC Sabathia, there’s no reason why he still can’t be some measure of something quality like in shape and form. The rest of season numbers are still good enough for a number 2 guy on your staff.”

Now, the actual numbers actually don’t really mesh with this analysis. I, of course, didn’t project him to continue being an ace, but there’s nothing wrong with a guy who can still show flashes of one. Well, the peripherals are close to supporting that, with a FIP nearly a run lower than his ERA. And while the uptick in walks is disturbing, the strikeouts are still there. Sabathia won’t be as good as he once was, but this year seems like regression waiting to happen. He’ll make an intriguing buy-low next year.

Clay Buchholz — I proclaimed ‘nervous’ bull here, but then injury happened. So I guess he’s an injured bull. (Post can be found here.) Like Harvey, and to a lesser extent with Dickey, Buchholz’s analysis was speed bumped by injury. Before his arm troubles, there were encouraging changes to support his elite production.

“His fastball has certainly leveled up, which is sending a positive ripple-effect on the rest of his repertoire. Based on what we’ve discovered, these changes come from improved command and perhaps even better sequencing. But are these improved skills here to stay? Well, that’s the rub.”

With only two starts since coming off the DL, we’ll have to stay in a holding pattern for a bit longer to see if the changes Buchholz was showing earlier in the year are legitimate.

Derek Holland — A complete, affirmative bull. (Post can be found here.) Finally looking like he’s put everything together, there is certainly plenty of good evidence to believe this new level is real.

“When throwing his slider, Holland gets a 25.3 whiff rate, a large improvement from last season’s 19.3% and career rate of 21.3%. Obviously, he knows what the most effective pitch in his arsenal is this year, and he’s throwing it at the right time.”

However, his second-half numbers have clearly shown that regression was due. Less strikeouts, more walks, and an uptick in home runs allowed is concerning. There is still a chance this is a bad stretch for him, but as of now, my left eye-brow is in Spock stance. The data still supports what he did in the beginning of the year, so as of now, I’m in a holding pattern.

Jhoulys Chacin — For what and who he is, bull happened. (Post can be found here.) This one is simple. Chacin has basically figured out which pitch works in the least friendly pitching environment in the Major Leagues.

“Based on his usage and sequencing, the curveball has fallen by the wayside in his repertoire. Why is that? Simply put, the curveball is the one pitch that is most negatively affected at a mile above sea-level. And what has taken its place? The slider has now become the primary out-pitch, or ‘go-to’ pitch, and, of course, it is the one non-fastball pitch that is least negatively affected in Coors Field.”

I think this puts him into the class of a mid-rotation guy in fantasy. That could be a Jordan Zimmermann type, but at a discount.

A.J. Burnett Yet another bull. (Post can be found here.) And Francisco Liriano. So now I’m realizing all my pitchers but one was a bull. Interesting. (Post can be found here.) They’re lumped together for a couple of reasons. First, they are Pirates and love that booty. Which I guess makes me a Pirate too. Which I guess makes everyone butt Pirates. Which actually seems like a path that will get us all in trouble. But as they say, sometimes it’s about the journey, not the destination. Also, they are lumped together because of how both these pitchers share a similar story in terms of their drastic improvement. And that is not throwing their four-seam fastballs anymore.

“Is is really that simple? Tell a player, “Hey, this pitch isn’t really working out… so maybe throw your other ones more and this one less.” Well, I guess it is, because that’s what’s happened here.”

Yup, I guess it is that simple. I’m going to continue to believe here.

Jaywrong is a 30-year old Korish writer who finds solace using Makers Mark as a vehicle to impress women, and also has an affinity for making Jennifer Lawrence GIFs. You can follow him @jaywrong, read his blog Desultory Thoughts of a Longfellow, or, you can find his GIFs at his tumblr, named Siuijeonseo.

From Around The Web

  1. Big AL says:
    (link)

    I am not familiar with the term “KORISH”. Just curious as how you interpret it. R A Dickey fell to me in one of my leagues and I was happy about it. After 2 months I was not. We tend to hold on to certain players longer than we should. I thing you got a little clingy to R A and your right the HR’s and lack of SO’s killed his value. I’m letting you you have him next year. I’m moving on to a new fetish. I am believing in Buchholtz through.

    • Jay

      jaywrong says:
      (link)

      @Big AL: One of the commentators created that to be shorthand for my Korean/Irish background.

      I’m still clingy to the guy, so yeah, I might need help.

  2. Alex says:
    (link)

    Hola,

    I have a choice between prado and lowrie in dynasty. I am competing this year, but can only move in slg and avg. Of course there is future considerations involved as well and prado is 3B elig.

    Do I drop prado for lowrie or stay the course? This is for my SS position where I only have stupid castro.

    Gracias

    • Jay

      jaywrong says:
      (link)

      @Alex: Smart thing is to go with Prado, but I’m a big Lowrie fan, so it’s up to you. I’m going against the grain here and sticking with Jed.

      • Alex says:
        (link)

        @jaywrong: My other choice is to dump Calhoun for Lowrie. Maybe that one then?

        Thanks

  3. Gregorius Chant says:
    (link)

    Jaywrong, I have enjoyed bear/bull this year. One critique of your end of year scorecard, while I understand the “conclusion” on each, I think it would have been more clear to give yourself a “jaywrong or Jayright” rating on each piece, then tally it up for the year. For 2013 FBB purposes, here is my tally of your writeups
    R.A. Dickey – Jaywrong, (note, I traded for him the day the article came out for Werth, so no big loss there….)
    Harvey – Jayright
    CC – Jayright (and totally agreed at the time)
    Buchholz – Jaywrong (but hey, who can predict injuries)
    Holland – arguable, I will go with a boring tie, lets call it Jaybe (like maybe)
    Chacin – Jayright
    A.J. – tough, he scored two W’s, two bad games in Tex/Stl. K’s there, really more of a disappointment (so far), but would’ve benched him in Tex/Stl, so I gotta go with Jaybe

    I give you a 3-2-2, not bad, but more importantly I enjoyed and utilized the analysis! Thanks for your work!

    • Jay

      jaywrong says:
      (link)

      @Gregorius Chant: Yeah, wonder why I didn’t think of that.

      At least you took care of it for me. A winning record is all that I ask.

  4. bossmanjunior says:
    (link)

    There was a good article on fangraphs explaining that the improvements Buchholz made almost came exclusively from an insanely high called strike three percentage. As crazy as it sounds, roughly half of his strike outs were looking. His swk% and other peripherals remained relatively unchanged. Much like inducing a high number of pop ups, its unknown as to whether this is a repeatable skill or just luck. I would be cautious of him going into next year but at the right price, I would definitely be interested.

    • Jay

      jaywrong says:
      (link)

      @bossmanjunior: I’ll have to check that out. Thanks.

  5. Gr says:
    (link)

    Hey guys…need help on a short time line so hope you can get back to me in less than an hour (sorry). 20 team league finals (followed Greys Rankings!! You rock!)
    Would you start Morton and Tyson Ross tonight?

    • Jay

      jaywrong says:
      (link)

      @Gr: Eh, Ross.

      • GR says:
        (link)

        @jaywrong: Thanks so I will sit Morton!

        • Jay

          jaywrong says:
          (link)

          @GR: no probs.

          • GR says:
            (link)

            @jaywrong: opps…

            • Jay

              jaywrong says:
              (link)

              @GR: you started Ross, right?

              • GR says:
                (link)

                @jaywrong: I did so got some nice stats! Thanks!!

                • Jay

                  jaywrong says:
                  (link)

                  @GR: awesome. I thought something went wrong based on the oops.

                  • GR says:
                    (link)

                    @jaywrong: The opps was sitting Morton…got the Ross stats though thanks!

  6. TobiasFunkeAnalRapist says:
    (link)

    Pick a streamer for Friday:
    Sabathia @ Tor
    Ervin Santana Vs. Tex
    Chacin Vs. Ari
    Thanks.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
      (link)

      Don’t like any… Ervin…

      • Grey

        Grey says:
        (link)

        Oops, sorry, JW

        • Jay

          jaywrong says:
          (link)

          @Grey: Naw, actually, now you got me second guessing…

  7. Matt P says:
    (link)

    Hey Jay, last three spots on my dynasty league roster, who would you keep? SP is my greatest need so I’m leaning Mejia and Luebke but not sure about last spot…maybe Pinto since a hitting C is very valuable.

    Oberholtzer, Mejia, Luebke, Daniel Hudson, Ben Revere, Bud Norris, Chris Johnson, Venable?
    One of these younger guys maybe: Burch Smith, Erik Johnson, Pinto, Ruf, Flores, Asche, Semien?

    Any chance Vic Black is the closer in NY next year? Thanks!

  8. Ein Geist der Verschwundenen says:
    (link)

    My Dearest Mr. Jay Wrong: The lengths “they (the evil one)” stoop to in attempting to prevent your FBB greatness from shining through is outrageous …

    They might as well try and block out the sun as to try and block out this website’s Star of the Show IMO..

    I see your “This Is (Almost) The End My Only Friend” thread was not even allocated a comment section – out of outright meanness probably.. What else is there here at RazzBall – excepting bad FBB advice and paranoia???? – Needless to say, withstanding the wonderful you, Mr Wrong…

    You are my latter day FBB Titan Prometheus ,Mr Worng… You have taken me – a humble hunk of clay – molded me into a man and along with your gift of fire (inner) you have created a fantasy winner (maybe??? – another story – close race now)

    Don’t let the false gods of FBB in the RazzBall Towers arrest you and chain you to a stake on the roof where your forever regenerating liver will fed upon daily by the Tower’s pigeons …

    *** Speaking of livers **** Noticed you commented on Makers Mark… For much less $$$s – Trader Joes has it for 21$$$ I prefer “Bulleit Rye” – great viscosity (a must for me in whiskies/bourbons) and superior flavors .. Often rated best buy in Bourbons for a reason..

    Blanton’s Single Barrel – pricey But worth it and is Great Stuff, – My Fav … Super at coating on the pallet and consistent — I have not found it possesses the bottle variation found in “Booker’s” (another pricey great – capable of creating massive olfactory memories – if the tumblers click right – somewhat disappointing when they do not – It is barrel strength too)

    Lagavulin Scotch is a personal fav that has batch variations (for a different reason) – But don’t like the bitter water finishes of all Scotch – when I can have a bourbon instead — Never had a barrel strength Scotch – that might solve the problem – They are beginning to come out…

    Barrel Strength is something to look for in Bourbons – Blanton’s is watered down for some reason… Would like it better hotter, I think..

    I must fade away now to the Other World of the disappeared,now.. *** The Other World is dry by the way…

    Good Luck and Thanks

Comments are closed.