My September 10 Sunday Notes column included Chris Antonetti addressing his staff’s 2023 offensive struggles. In accordance with Cleveland’s President of Baseball Operations, “The issue isn’t energy, the issue is that we have to rating extra runs.” Whereas I don’t essentially disagree with the exec’s opinion, it’s nonetheless true that the Guardians hit the fewest residence runs of any staff and completed fourth from the underside in runs scored. Furthermore, they completed 76-86 after going 92-70 in 2022.
I revisited the difficulty, at the very least partially, throughout this month’s GM conferences. I requested Antonetti’s second in command, Mike Chernoff, if the membership must reassess a few of its philosophies going ahead.
“For those who rewind the clock one 12 months, we felt like we massively outperformed trade expectations,” Cleveland’s Basic Supervisor advised me “We gained 92 video games with the youngest staff in baseball. This 12 months, we once more had the youngest staff in baseball. We hit just a few unlucky and premature accidents with a few of our beginning pitching, however on the identical time we transitioned three younger starters in [Gavin] Williams, [Tanner] Bibee, and [Logan] Allen to the major-league staff. We simply didn’t carry out as properly offensively. So we don’t really feel like wholesale modifications are vital. We really feel like we’ve a extremely robust basis off of which to proceed constructing, however we additionally don’t have a variety of room for error as a small-market staff.”
Trade expectations are one factor, in-house projection techniques are one other. With that in thoughts, I requested Chernoff if the 2022 Guardians outperformed their very own projections, and if the 2023 membership underperformed them.
“Projection techniques are simply free estimates of what you suppose can occur,” Chernoff mentioned. “Usually you see issues emerge in actual time, and we noticed our staff come collectively a 12 months in the past and actually rally round a brand new model of baseball and the youth of the staff, particularly after José Ramírez signed on long run. That was an actual turning level for as a company. I don’t suppose we’re caught to what our projections are. We like to consider, ‘How can we put the items in place to see what can emerge from that group.’”
A lot of Cleveland’s offensive-side-of-the-ball success in 2022 got here from low strikeout totals and excessive stolen base numbers. This season, stolen-base numbers have been means up throughout the league whereas strikeout totals have been barely down. Did a lessening of the Guardians’ benefit in these style-of-play areas negatively influence the staff’s fortunes?
“I don’t suppose so in any respect,” opined Chernoff. “And we’re not wanting, essentially, to only construct a contact-oriented staff. Ideally, we’d prefer to develop energy. We traded for Kyle Manzardo, who’s bought a ton of energy. We lately drafted Chase DeLauter, who’s bought a ton of energy. We simply added Johnathan Rodriguez to our [40-man] roster and he’s bought a ton of energy. We’re hopeful that we’re going to have a balanced staff over time.”
The three gamers Chernoff named definitely have the potential so as to add punch to the lineup. Manzardo went deep 17 instances in Triple-A, added six extra in an AFL stint, and has been assigned a 50 FV by my colleague Eric Longenhagen. DeLauter (45 FV) was drafted sixteenth total in 2022 and is projected to provide excess of the ten residence runs he hit between the AFL and a truncated-by-injury minor-league marketing campaign. Rodriguez, who lately turned 24 and stays comparatively unheralded, banged out 29 residence runs between Double-A and Triple-A.
Which brings us to “we additionally don’t have a variety of room for error as a small-market staff.” These phrases from Chernoff communicate volumes. The Guardians had the seventh-lowest payroll in MLB this season, and there’s little purpose to consider that’s about to alter meaningfully in a constructive means. Cal Quantrill was simply dealt for a prospect, and with Shane Bieber set to change into a free agent after the 2024 season, he might very properly be subsequent. On the subject of team-building philosophy, one factor Chernoff and Co. don’t have is the facility to spend large. Restricted by small-ball possession, they will solely do what they will do.
RANDOM HITTER-PITCHER MATCHUPS
Diego Cartaya is the highest prospect within the Los Angeles Dodgers system, however that doesn’t imply he’s coming off of a superb season with the bat. Removed from. The 22-year-old catcher slashed simply .189/.278/.379 in 403 plate appearances with Double-A Tulsa. Displaying what my colleague Eric Longenhagen has described as “uncommon uncooked thump,” he did propel 19 of his 67 base hits over outfield fences.
I requested L.A. GM Brandon Gomes the place the Macaray, Venezuela native is developmentally.
“Diego is constant to progress this offseason,” replied Gomes. “We’re having conversations and diving into completely different areas on his swing and how you can deal with completely different fronts. I feel it does get a bit misplaced on how younger he’s, particularly for the extent. Whereas I do know his offensive 12 months wasn’t the place he would have hoped, he took main strides in game-planning, in receiving and throwing, in main pitchers’ conferences and understanding how you can lead a workers, that are all extremely vital — some intangibles that you simply need to see out of catchers. So we did see development in a variety of areas, regardless that the offensive efficiency wasn’t the place we might have wished it.”
Following up, I requested the 39-year-old GM if catchers are possibly much less linear of their improvement, hitting-wise, than are gamers at different positions.
“I feel so, as a result of we problem with them with a lot,” mentioned Gomes. “Our expectation on the major-league stage is so extremely excessive. Making an attempt to set that basis, you’ll be able to solely spend so many hours in a day taking a look at video, speaking to pitchers. In order that they do get pulled in several instructions. To your level, typically it’s not fairly as linear.”
The Corridor of Fame consists of 22 males who’ve been inducted as managers. Which ones is the one one to have gained an MLB batting title throughout his taking part in profession?
The reply may be discovered beneath.
The Pittsburgh Pirates have employed Justin Horowitz as their new Director of Novice Scouting. A graduate of Georgetown College, Horowitz has labored within the Boston Pink Sox group since 2012.
The Tampa Bay Rays have employed Buddy Carlyle as their new minor-league pitching coordinator. The 45-year-old former big-league hurler has spent the final seven years within the Los Angeles Angels group.
Dave Stenhouse, a right-handed pitcher who appeared in 76 video games for the Washington Senators from 1962-1964, died final weekend at age 90. An American League All-Star in his rookie season when he went 11-12 with a 3.65 ERA over 197 innings, the Westerly, Rhode Island native was the daddy of Mike Stenhouse, who performed for 3 groups throughout the 1982-1986 seasons.
Rob Belloir, an infielder who performed in 81 video games for the Atlanta Braves throughout the 1975-1978 seasons, died earlier this week at age 75 (per Baseball Participant Passings). One in every of 45 German-born gamers in MLB historical past, the Heidelberg native was drafted out of Mercer College by Cleveland and went to Atlanta because the PTBNL in a commerce centering round Blue Moon Odom and Roric Harrison.
The reply to the quiz is Joe Torre, who led the Nationwide League with a .363 batting common taking part in for the St. Louis Cardinals in 1971.
Quite a few gamers wanted to be positioned on 40-man rosters earlier this week so as to not be accessible within the upcoming Rule-5 draft. With that in thoughts, let’s look again ultimately 12 months’s major-league Rule-5, which noticed the primary six picks both keep on with their claiming golf equipment or with the groups they have been subsequently flipped to.
The Washington Nationals took Thad Ward first-overall and the 26-year-old right-hander proceeded to pitch in 11 video games and put up a 6.37 ERA over 35-and-a-third innings.
The Oakland Athletics chosen Ryan Noda second-overall and the 27-year-old first baseman went on to log a 123 wRC+ over 495 plate appearances.
The Pittsburgh Pirates took José Hernández with the third decide, with the left-hander happening to make 50 appearances and put up a 4.97 ERA over 50-and-two-thirds innings.
The Cincinnati Reds tabbed Blake Sabol with the fourth decide, then promptly traded the 25-year-old catcher/outfielder to the San Francisco Giants, for whom he logged a 92 wRC+ over 344 plate appearances.
The Detroit Tigers took Mason Englert fifth-overall and the recently-turned 24-year-old right-hander went 4-3 with a 5.46 ERA over 31 appearances comprising 56 innings.
The Colorado Rockies claimed Kevin Kelly, then bought him to the Tampa Bay Rays with whom he went 5-2 with a 3.09 ERA and one save over 57 appearances comprising 67 innings.
The LG Twins gained their first Korean Sequence since 1994, beating the KT Wiz in 5 video games. Ji-hwan Oh was named collection MVP after swatting residence runs in three consecutive video games, and driving in eight runs total.
Josh Altmann and Tyler Beardsley have been prime performers because the Australian Baseball League season bought underway on Thursday. Altmann, a 29-year-old former Texas Rangers prospect who performed indie ball this 12 months, had two doubles and a house run because the Adelaide Giants trounced the Brisbane Bandits 12-1. Beardsley, a 29-year-old former Minnesota Twins prospect who likewise performed indie ball this 12 months, threw six scoreless innings with 10 strikeouts because the Perth Warmth blanked the Melbourne Aces 4-0.
Elkin Alcala has eight saves and a 1.93 ERA over 14 innings for the Mexican Pacific Winter League’s Venados de Mazatlan. The 25-year-old right-hander from Cartagena, Colombia performed within the Miami Marlins group from 2016-2019.
Starlin Castro is 24-for-65 with a pair of residence runs for the Dominican Winter League’s Aguilas Cibaenas. The 33-year-old infielder participant for the unbiased Atlantic League’s Spire Metropolis Ghost Hounds this summer time. His final MLB motion got here in 2021 with the Washington Nationals.
Trevor Could talked about a few of his favourite gamers to observe once I talked to him halfway by means of the 2023 season. The since-retired right-hander named Daniel Vogelbach and Joey Votto — “I like all the pieces Joey says now” — including that he enjoys guys who’re eccentric and are having a superb time. Two different gamers he named have decrease profiles.
“Reyes Moronta with the Angels, who I noticed once I was rehabbing in Triple-A,” mentioned Could. “Huge man, throws onerous. His complete vibe. Joey Wiemer with the Brewers. I like all the pieces that man does. I don’t know if he is aware of that. He’s enjoyable. He’s bought Hunter Pence vibes for me.”
Jaison Chourio slashed .321/.446/.419 with a 132 wRC+ in 231 plate appearances between the Arizona Complicated League and Low-A Lynchburg. The 18-year-old switch-hitting outfield prospect within the Cleveland Guardians group is the youthful brother of Milwaukee Brewers outfield prospect Jackson Chourio, who at the moment ranks No. 3 on The Board.
Oliver Dunn slashed .343/.455/.616 and swiped a dozen bases with out being caught for the Arizona Fall League’s Scottsdale Scorpions. Traded from the Philadelphia Phillies to the Milwaukee Brewers earlier this week, the 26-year-old second baseman had 21 residence runs and a .902 OPS for Double-A Studying.
Justice Bigbie had a strong Arizona Fall League season on the heels of a breakout 12 months within the Detroit Tigers system. After slashing .343/.405/.537 with 19 residence runs throughout Excessive-A, Double-A, and Triple-A, the 24-year-old outfielder batted .292 over 83 plate appearances with the Salt River Rafters,
Who was the hardest pitcher he confronted within the AFL? I requested that query to the previous Western Carolina Catamount, and the 2 guys he named have been Davis Daniel, a 26-year-old right-hander who made his MLB debut with the Los Angeles Angels in September, and Jack Perkins, a 23-year-old right-hander within the Oakland Athletics system who break up the summer time between Excessive-A Lansing and Double-A Midland.
“Davis Daniel has a type of fastballs the place you get within the field and it appears tougher than what the report says,” defined Bigbie, whom the Tigers took within the nineteenth spherical of the 2021 draft. “I imply, all the pieces he had was good. His fastball had good VAA [vertical approach angle], so it had a bit little bit of up-shoot. And he knew how you can pitch. It was only a robust at-bat.
“Jack Perkins, who was with Mesa, is somebody who has at all times been robust to hit off of. He was in Lansing this 12 months, so I’ve confronted him a few instances. He’s one other good arm. He was a troublesome at-bat for me, one thing I knew that I used to be going to should grind out.”
Perkins had 15 strikeouts and didn’t enable an earned run in 12-and-a-third Arizona Fall League innings. Daniel had 25 strikeouts and allowed 4 earned runs in 19 innings.
LINKS YOU’LL LIKE
Baseball Savant now has a Pitcher Operating Sport Prevention leaderboard. Mike Petriello offered a primer at MLB.com.
How does MLB’s pitch monitoring system work? Emma Baccellieri explored that query at Sports activities Illustrated.
Our Esquina’s José de Jesus Ortiz offered us with an explanatory listing of the highest Latino managerial prospects.
Cleveland’s Bob Feller set an American League strikeout file in Hank Greenberg’s closing recreation as a Detroit Tiger. Tom Thress wrote about the September 29, 1946 contest for SABR’s Sport Undertaking.
RANDOM FACTS AND STATS
Los Angeles Angels right-hander Dean Probability made 5 begins in opposition to the New York Yankees in his 1964 Cy Younger Award season. In them, he allowed 14 hits and one run (on a house run by Mickey Mantle) over 50 innings.
San Diego Padres left-hander Randy Jones had 22 wins and 25 full video games in his 1976 Cy Younger Award season. He fanned 93 batters in 315-and-a-third innings.
Pete Vukovich went 32-10 with a 3.42 ERA from 1981-1982, his first two seasons with the Milwaukee Brewers after being acquired from the St. Louis Cardinals as a part of a seven-player commerce. The fitting-hander was awarded the AL Cy Younger within the second of these seasons.
Bob Welch went 61-23 with a 3.21 ERA from 1988-1990, his first three seasons with the Oakland Athletics after being acquired from the Los Angeles Dodgers as a part of a three-team, eight-player commerce. The fitting-hander was awarded the AL Cy Younger within the final of these seasons.
Joe Torre had 2,342 hits and a couple of,326 managerial wins.
Corridor of Fame supervisor John McGraw slashed .334/.466/.410 in 4,946 plate appearances from 1891-1907. Primarily a 3rd baseman throughout his taking part in days, “Little Napoleon” batted .391 with a .547 OBP, and 124 walks to go together with simply 21 strikeouts, with the Nationwide League’s Baltimore Orioles in 1899.
The Milwaukee Brewers signed Sal Bando to a free-agent contract on right this moment’s date in 1976. A four-time All-Star third baseman with a 130 wRC+ for the Oakland A’s from 1968-1976, Bando performed 5 seasons in Milwaukee and went on to change into the membership’s Basic Supervisor from 1992-1999.
The Los Angeles Dodgers traded Pedro Martinez to the Montreal Expos in alternate for Delino DeShields on right this moment’s date in 1993. The Corridor of Fame right-hander went 55-33 with a 3.06 in 4 seasons north of the border earlier than being dealt to the Boston Pink Sox on November 18, 1997.
Gamers born on right this moment’s date embrace John Roskos, a primary baseman/outfielder who went 4-for-49 whereas taking part in for the Florida Marlins and the San Diego Padres from 1998-2000. His .082 batting common is fourth-lowest in MLB historical past amongst non-position gamers with at the very least 50 plate appearances, with solely Frank Hemphill (.070), Mike Gerber (.076), and Fred Tauby (.077) posting decrease marks.
Additionally born on right this moment’s date was Steve Gerkin, a right-handed pitcher who went 0-12 for the Philadelphia Athletics in 1945, his lone big-league season. Terry Felton (0-13 in 1982 and 0-16 for his profession) is the one pitcher in historical past with extra single-season and profession losses with out being credited for a win.