Link dump: Dead money, regressing starters, standing room

2010 Season Preview: Greatness in the 9th
Sherman: Hughes will be the fifth starter

Some lunch time links while we make you wait another two hours for something on the fifth starter situation.

The Mets are shopping Gary Matthews Jr.


Teams that are paying money to other teams

At FanGraphs, Steve Sommer takes a look at teams that are sending 10 percent or more of their overall payroll to other teams. The Blue Jays lead the way at $16 million, or 23 percent of their payroll. In pure dollar terms, though, the Dodgers are paying out the most, $16.6 million. You can check out the whole list here. The Yankees are only shelling out $4.5 million in that regard, a mere 2 percent of overall payroll.

The year-after effect for young starters

At ESPN’s TMI blog, Tango examines young pitchers who break out and then regress the following year. Clayton Kershaw, Jair Jurrjens, Tommy Hanson, and Felix Hernandez qualify this year, and Tango warns that they could regress just like their predecessors. Check out the accompanying table for more recent examples. Also keep this in mind when you think about Joba Chamberlain. He pitched excellently in the rotation in 2008, but pitched markedly worse in 2009. To that end, Zack Greinke had a 5.80 ERA in the season following his breakout, in which he posted a 3.97 ERA.

Does wOBA undervalue Ichiro?

Jeff Sullivan at Lookout landing takes on the question and makes many fine points. To my mind, this is the best way to argue with stats. To categorically dismiss them is foolish. We can learn plenty by a player’s results. We can learn a lot more by thinking, in specific terms, what the stat might not be telling us.

Everything you need to know about Standing Room Only tickets

Ross at NYY Stadium Insider writes at length about the Standing Room Only tickets the Yankees have offered for the 2010 season. If you’re thinking about getting these slightly cheaper tickets, definitely read over his post.

Other links

I found a lot worth reading, so…

2010 Season Preview: Greatness in the 9th
Sherman: Hughes will be the fifth starter
  • Rick in Boston

    I’m having a brain fart right now. Who are the Yankees paying for? Melky?

    • Mike Axisa

      $5K for Melky, $4M for the Kei-man. It’s dead money, meaning money paid to players not the 40-man. Not necessary just money paid to player on other teams.

      • Rick in Boston

        Gotcha. Thanks Mike.

        Good to see Julio Lugo still haunting Theo.

        • Hey ZZ

          It says only 3.35 million for the Red Sox. I thought they owe Lugo his full salary.

          • Rick in Boston

            I think it’s because Milwaukee is paying Bill Hall.

        • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a The Large Sample Size

          There’s a big difference between the Sox continuing to pay Lugo and us continuing to pay Igawa, however.

          There’s a possibility (remote, sure, but still extant) that Igawa can still contribute to our ballclub. Lugo cannot.

          Listing them both as “dead money” seems fair, but listing them both as “money paid to players on other teams’ rosters” as FG does is wrong.

          • rbizzler

            Agreed. It is a little misleading to say the least.

            Plus Kei indirectly helps the by teaching young pitchers how to handle yourself in the face of continued adversity and disappointment (I kid).

          • Bo

            Lugo helps them by not playing there.

            Same as Igawa helps the Yanks

            • JGS

              Lugo hit .284/.352/.367 for the Sox before they cut him. That is significantly better than any of his replacements did, and not much worse than Scutaro will do

      • bexarama

        will this happen to Gaudin if no team takes him off waivers?

        • Rick in Boston

          According to the way FG does their calculations, yes. But I agree with TSJC – the way they do the calculations is misleading.

    • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a The Large Sample Size


      The Fangraphs number of 4.5M we’re paying to “other teams” is bullshit (or at least, not properly stated).

      They’re sourcing Cot’s Contracts. Check out how Cots generated it’s number:

      # 2010 payroll obligations for former players:
      * $ 4,000,000 (Kei Igawa) (plus $4M in 2011)
      * $ 500,000 (Melky Cabrera)

      “Former players” and “Players playing for other teams” and “Players no longer on the 40-man” are not equitable concepts.

      Our number shouldn’t be 4.5M, it should be 0.5M. Kei Igawa is not a “former player”, nor is he playing for another organization.

      • ROBTEN

        Or maybe they’re secretly letting us know that the Yankees pulled a Beatles circa 1966 and that the guy playing in Scranton really isn’t Kei Igawa, but a look-alike and pitch-alike replacement.

        /the walrus’d

  • bexarama

    so so so because last year was a regression year does this mean Joba is gonna post like a 3.01 ERA this year?!?!?

    Also, your commentary on the first item is a thing of beauty. Good thing Reyes is coming back…

  • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a The Large Sample Size

    From the Mets/Matthews Sherman article:

    One other note on the Mets and center field: There have been a lot of calls for them to put Fernando Martinez there. But Mets officials privately do not feel he can handle the position any longer. If he could then they certainly would put him there. It would serve them best. Not only because he would be a strong option while Beltran is gone, but also because he would increase his value for a potential trade if Martinez showed he could still play center field at least adequately.

    That’s just sad. F-Mart can’t play CF? Already?

    Man, that team is chronically screwed.

    • Jose

      It seems like some kind of sick joke. He has been playing there in the Mets system since he was 17. With Beltran out they should definitely stick him in there and see what comes out.

  • Johnny

    Whats funny about the Mets trying to trade Gary Mathews Jr.?

    They aren’t paying him anything… The Angels had to swallow most of that contract. The Mets could simply release him if they want…

    • Benjamin Kabak

      Because they picked him up with plans to use him during the regular season. It’s hilarious how inept their management is right now.

      • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a The Large Sample Size

        I’m already anticipating the Mets trading him to the Reds for Brandon Arroyo, who promptly puts up a 6.40 ERA, 9-15 W/L record.

        Meanwhile, Pagan crashes into Francoeur in the outfield on Opening Day, Beltran-Cameron style, knocking them both out for the year, and Beltran re-tweaks his hammy in his final minor league tuneups and doesn’t return until August. Left with zero OF depth (since they dealt away Matthews), they bring back Carlos Delgado, shift Murphy to RF, and trade F-Mart to the White Sox for Juan Pierre.

        Classic Mettastrophe.

        • Jose

          Corollary: Arroyo is then signed to a 3 years/$36M deal after the year.

          • Steve H

            Which Minaya would see as a steal. You look at pitchers like CC/Lackey/Burnett getting these 5-7 year deals, and I pull off Brandon Arroyo for only 3 years, that’s shrewd.

        • Tom Zig

          Brandon Arroyo?

          Is this some inside joke I’m missing?

        • bexarama

          Pagan knocking out Francoeur would probably HELP the Mets

          • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a The Large Sample Size


    • Mike Axisa


      1. They’re on the hook for $2M of his salary, and chances are they’ll have to eat at least a portion of it to trade him.

      2. They traded a useful reliever in Brian Stokes to get him.

      3. They probably won’t get someone as good as Stokes in return.

      • bexarama

        Other than the innings which they can surely find elsewhere*, how is Brian Stokes that valuable? In 2009: 4.63 FIP (3.97 ERA, 104 ERA+), 1.564 WHIP, and an ugly 1.18 K/BB in relief (1.51 career). He has been worth -0.3 WAR over his career, maxing out at 0.4. Last year he was worth -0.2. That 2009 FIP and WHIP are better than his career average, and he’s 29 so it’s not like he’s still developing.

        * I hope. Who knows, with the Mets system.

        • bexarama

          and he’s 29 so it’s not like he’s still developing.

          Poorly stated on my part. He may still be developing pitches and control and whatnot. But in baseball years, he is running out of time a bit.

        • Zack

          They’re not getting anything better than Brian Stokes in return and they need bullpen arms. So instead they’re going to panic and probably keep Mejia in the bullpen,

          Krod- closer
          Escobar- injured
          Feliciano- lefty specialist
          Igarashi- unproven
          Parnell- throws hard, still potential
          Green- righty specialist
          Calero- minor league deal, apparently no other team trusted his shoulder

    • Bo

      Exactly. The joke is really on the Angels. Not on the Mets. The Mets traded for him to be a 4th OF and maybe step in for CF if Pagan fell on his face.

  • A.D.

    Given that the Mets didn’t get a deal for Matthews, how is he more valuable now….

    • Slugger27

      he isnt.

  • Will (the other one)

    Joe’s comment underneath the GMJ article may be my favorite thing EVAH.


    “It’s just some rubber and that little disc,” Manuel said. “I don’t feel anything, no. But you never know. When I was a hitting coach, if a guy thought he was having success because of something, I didn’t say anything. Let him think it.”


    I know that a lot of people would say that its fine if it doesn’t hurt anyone, but a little less superstition and “fuzzy” thinking would be nice.

    /Apply directly to the forehead’d

  • Kiersten

    Damnnnn… that catch. Wow, too bad it was just during ST.

  • pat

    As some of you may know, Yankee farmhand Kyle Anson retired a few weeks ago. Wat we don’t know is why. Well, it’s not because Romine, Montero, Cervelli, Rivera and Pilittere are ahead of him on the depth charts. It’s not because of his career .706 OPS.

    It’s because he hates Tony Franklin’s guts.

    “He took the fun out of things for me,” Anson continued. “When baseball’s not fun for me anymore, then it’s time to do something else. “I didn’t enjoy playing for Tony Franklin whatsoever,” Anson said yesterday. “When I found out he was returning, I took it as a sign from God.”

    • steve s

      How about he was 26 and wasn’t even a mediocre Double A player. He should have just retired and said nothing instead of burning his Yankee bridges. Dumb.

    • YankeesJunkie

      So is the Yankees farm dead now, I mean Anson was the best 10th catcher ever!!!

  • mustang

    Thank you so much for the piece on the “Standing Room Only tickets”. I purchased standing room only tickets online for one of the Mets games and I had no idea what the set-up was there was no information on it at the Yankees site.
    Again another “wonderful” job by the Yankees tickets office on keeping their fans informed and satisfy with their purchase.

    Great help thank you again.

    • mustang

      It’s unbelievable that we have to go to blogs to find out about this kind of information.

  • Bob C

    pretty sure that catch by ichiro was set up by a bad jump… looks cool but really not a great play

    • Steve H

      Bad jumps turning into good looking plays=Why people think Tacoby is a good CF

  • king of fruitless hypotheticals

    The Yankees are only shelling out $4.5 million in that regard, a mere 2 percent of overall payroll.

    Heh…using their logic I’m surprised we don’t have to include luxury tax too…

  • Mammafarded

    Oh…. Sports .. lol.
    Nice link farm you got there .

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