2012 Outlook: Minnesota Twins

The Minnesota Twins are coming off one of their worst seasons in franchise history. They had problems everywhere, whether it be the horrid pitching staff or the atrocious batting. Mauer and Morneau struggled with injuries for most of, if not all of the season. They had some of their minor league talent give a glimpse of the future towards the end of the season, though.
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2012 Outlook: Houston Astros

Today we begin our team-by-team outlooks from the bottom of the barrel.  The 2011 Houston Astros were the result of win-now trades, which gutted the farm system, and trading their remaining talent to re-stockpile the minors.  The rebuilding has begun to take place with new ownership and their hiring of new GM Jeff Luhnow.  Winning this year will not be their goal, but a lot can be accomplished. Continue reading

Big Things Ahead

The writers here at Saber Analysis have been planning some exciting things for the blog in the near future. I can’t give it all away but one thing I can tell you is that starting tomorrow we will begin season outlooks for every team in baseball. Be sure to check often for an analysis of your favorite team.

-Alex

Appreciating Joe Mauer.

Joe Mauer is widely regarded as one of the games best catcher in all of baseball. Just how good is he though? In this post I am going to see how Mauer stacks up against some of the greatest catchers to ever play the game.

When Joe Mauer attended Cretin Derham High School in St. Paul, Minnesota he was widely regarded as a three sport star. He was the quarterback for the varsity team, played varsity basketball as a sophomore and was also a pretty good baseball player. During the 2001 draft the Twins had the first pick and were debating between hometown hero Joe Mauer and a pitcher out of USC named Mark Prior. Prior told the Twins he didn’t want to sign with them and the rest is history.

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What Happened to Francisco Liriano?

One of the most enigmatic pitchers in the game had a season he’d like to forget in 2011.  Francisco Liriano posted an ugly 5.09 ERA, and his 4.54 FIP and 4.53 SIERA showed the ERA was fairly deserved.  He had one shining moment, a no-hitter on May 3.  However, his 6 BB, 2 K performance was good for a 6.12 xFIP, one of, if not, the worst no-hitters of all-time.  Nearly every statistic declined for Liriano last year, so I hope you have some time on your hands. Continue reading

Dan Haren: Mr. Underrated

Throughout baseball no one has been more underrated than Dan Haren. Since 2008 Haren has been one of the games best starting pitchers, even better than his all-star teammate Jered Weaver. Based on wins above replacement (WAR) he has been better than Felix Hernandez, Jon Lester, Jered Weaver and Cole Hamels. All four of those guys are all regarded as some of the games best pitchers.

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Can Prince Really Live Up to His Contract?

Many people, including myself, have shown shock at the deal the Tigers gave Prince Fielder earlier this week.  Most people in the sabermetric community do not believe Prince will produce at a level in line with his contract.  I do not think it is likely, but I can set up a plausible forecast that shows him producing nearly exactly market level. Continue reading

Lincecum Avoids Arbitration for Good

Tim Lincecum and the Giants have agreed to a 2 year, $40.5M deal to avoid arbitration.  Lincecum is set to make $18M this year and $22M in 2013, plus a $500K signing bonus.  Lincecum had put a $21.5M figure in for arbitration, and the team put in $17M, so the Giants get a bit of a deal for this year and likely next year.  The past 2 years, Lincecum has been a 4-5 win pitcher, after a couple 6-8 win seasons in ’08 and ’09.  If he continues to pitch at the same level, this is essentially a market-level deal. Continue reading

Prince Fielder Cashes in

Today, it was announced that the Detroit Tigers and Prince Fielder agreed to a 9/$214 million dollar deal. First thought that comes to mind is that’s a lot of money to give a future full-time DH. Fielder is really, really good, don’t get me wrong but in the end this could really blow up for the Tigers in the end. The Tigers recently lost  C/1B/DH Victor Martinez to a torn ACL and desperately needed to make a move, for the immediate future they may have made the right one but for the future it doesn’t look good.

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Projecting Platoon Splits for Pitchers

When a team is looking for pitchers, especially starting pitchers, they are looking for the ability to get both left and right handed hitters out.  There have been plenty of LOOGY/ROOGY’s who have had long careers, but their value to the team is not impactful, due to lack of innings.  There are two major factors which usually show the divide in results against lefties and righties: repertoire and ballpark factors. Continue reading