Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Timothy Lin

Everybody's mad about Timlin coming back for another year. I didn't throw any parties when I heard the news, but I was kind of glad. Think of it this way: If we'd gotten some other guy to fill that eighth-inning-ish role, who would it be? I'll tell you exactly. "Oh, we got this guy. He was pretty good with San Diego. Had a great '05 season, but then had an arm injury. But he's back from it now, and all signs point to him having an absolutely amazing year if everything falls into place. But yet somehow no other teams saw these signs, so we scored big time. Look, I can't explain why you've never heard of him, just trust me."

Timlin may have had some (a lot of) difficulties recently, but I'd take him over Mystery J. Reliever any day. Why? Because he's been here, he's part of the team and town already, has a shitload of experience, has proven he can get the job done, and he's the ovaries. He wants to win, so of course he's going to try to fix his problems. I think I want a guy like that on the team.

Would I hang out with the guy? Nope. He'd probably shoot me with one of those arrows just for saying that I don't eat meat. Then again, even the least hunter-ish baseball player wouldn't want to hang out with me--what would we do, play a dice baseball game I invented together? "Okay, here's the dice. First batter this inning is...you! Literally. Isn't that awesome? Huh? Where are you going? No, I don't know where Scores is...hello??"

People may say, "You just want to hang on to '04," like they said when I said Arroyo should stay. Look, you're missing the point, Hypothetical McGee. If a guy helps win you a World Series, what's wrong with wanting him to stay? Not because of tradition's sake, but because he showed the ability to pitch in big games and take his team as far as they can go. Which is what we want. It doesn't make me an unintelligent fan for saying we should keep guys that have gotten it done in the past. It's not like I'm saying we should dig up Smoky Joe Wood and start him on Opening Day. Timlin's still a living, breathing pitcher, and I usually feel good when he's on the mound.

You know, with the bases empty. But the bases are often empty, people. The bases are often empty.

I'm totally shocked and pissed that there's even a chance Gonzalez won't be back. I've said it before, but his defense is worth whatever he does at the plate. Every hit the guy gets is a bonus.

I think people are pissed because going to be 41 and coming off a season where he posted something like a ~7 ERA in the second half.

He's been a dependable reliever, and if they want him to pitch lower leverage innings while getting someone much more accomplished for the 8th inning role (Justin Speier, Keith Foulke) to setup whoever the hell the closer ends up being, I guess thats OK. But if his role doesn't change for next year, I see that as a pretty big problem for the bullpen on the whole.

I'm hoping the Sox trade for Aaron Heilman and make him their closer, to be honest.
Yeah, seventh inning is fine for Timlin.

I'm getting more and more worried about this Papelbon starting thing, though. I thought I'd be like, Whatever, as long as he's on the staff... but, I don't know. I really think screwing with something we've got all set could blow up in our faces.
It's a lot easier to find a guy who can throw ~75 innings at a ~3.00 ERA than it is to find someone, in the current talent pool, who can join your rotation and give you that many more quality innings. It's a huge trickle down for the staff, and keeps him healthy, etc.

The Tigers got the WS with Todd Jones as their closer. I don't see a huge reason to sweat it just yet.
Also, FWIW, among AL SS, Alex Gonzalez came in 12th in total Win Shares (which includes his defense). The only teams with a worse SS were Toronto and Kansas City. He was fifth in the AL in SS defensive win shares.

He had a WARP3 of 2.7 (also includes defense), and was actually a -5 FRAA.

He was pretty awful last year. I can understand, with the bevy of holes on the team, why they'd bring him back for a year in the interest of allocating resources, etc and then go after someone next year- though I'd be dreading carrying a player like that on the roster for '07. But anything more than a year and it would be such an enormous mistake. The numbers ain't lying here.
In my opinion, they're lying through their numerical teeth. He's an incredible defensive player.
Those numbers reflect in large part calculations of range. He's very athletic and sure-handed, but what these numbers show is that he's not real special range-wise.

Either way, he is such an atrocious hitter that his defense barely drags his value up to replacement player.

Win Shares has him at average defensively, and FRAA has him as below average. I've always trusted FRAA a bit more, though neither are foolproof. The Bill James Handbook is out soon, which will be another bit of data.
Well, remember, from my point of view, which is that I totally don't care about his offense, the fact that he's 5th in defense according to that number you gave above is totally fine with me.

The whole key to this is pitching. The lineup we've got is not as good as a few years ago, but I still think it's good enough if we just had better pitching overall. So I think getting worse defensively, at a position like SS would be bad, George. Really...bad.
which is that I totally don't care about his offense

Well, we're considering his entire value as a player, and putting it in the context of his peers. You may not care about his offense, but it's a very tangible part of his value, and it seriously drags whatever positives his defense brings way, way, way down.

If you were to, hypothetically, weaken the defense a bit in the process of really dramatically improving the offense at that position (which wouldn't be hard), the team would unquestionably be better.

I agree pitching is a priority, and that there is so much to be improved that they may not have the resources to upgrade in 2007. But having the 3rd worst starting SS in the AL hurt us bad last year, and he'll hurt us bad in 2007 as well. I think it's pretty cut and dry as to his value. You can't only count defense.
I'll really just take his defense. Any offense is a bonus. To me.

Post a Comment

If you're "anonymous," please leave a name, even if it's a fake one, for differentiation purposes.

If you're having trouble commenting, try signing in to whatever account you're using first, then come back here once you're signed in.

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

My Photo
Location: Rhode Island, United States