Wednesday Morning Thoughts (3/15/23)

For the next few days, I’m going to have limited time to write each morning so here are my thoughts.

The Braves option Bryce Elder and Ian Anderson to the minor league camp.

I didn’t see this one coming as I have several shares of both in draft-and-holds. The two pitchers still in the major league camp are Jared Shuster and Dylan Dodd who were completely off my radar. Here is the information I have on them from the Baseball America Handbook and the BaseballHQ Minor League Analyst.

Shuster and Dodd Profiles
Name BA FBv BHQ FBv BA Best non-FB BHQ Best non-FB * Minor League BB/9
Dylan Dodd 91.5 90.5 50, CH/SL 3, SL/CU 2.0
Jared Shuster 91 90 60, CH 4, SL 2.5
* 1 to 5 Scale

There isn’t much separation between the pair and I’m not happy with the low 90’s velocity on both.

There has been a tracked game for each pitcher.

On the 12th, Shuster averaged 92.3 mph on his fastball with his slider getting seven swings-and-misses while his change got five. Maybe both scouting reports were right on his secondaries and they just saw him on different days. So far this spring, he has a 14.5 K/9, 0.69 WHIP, and 0.00 ERA.

On the 2nd, Dodd averaged 93.7 mph on his fastball but neither of his non-fastballs (slider or change) missed many bats (3 total swings and misses). He’s posted a 7.2 K/9, 0.40 WHIP, and 0.00.

I’d lean toward Shuster of the pair with his ability so far to miss bats, but it could be Dodd with the added velocity.

Interesting velocities from 3/14

Eduardo Rodriguez: +1.9 mph to 93.6

Rodriguez struggled with his fastball velocity last season (down at 91.6 mph) after averaging 93.1 mph over his career. Hopefully, the added velo means his strikeout rate will be above 9.0 K/9 again.

Carlos Hernandez: +2.2
Nick Pivetta: +1.2
Logan Webb: +1.2
Bryce Elder: -1.0
Roansy Contreras: -1.1
Félix Bautista: -1.3
Michael King: -1.5
Rich Hill: -1.9

I usually don’t consider relievers being down, but with King and Bautista dealing with recent injuries, I want to see if they are regained their touch.

Isiah Kiner-Falefa in center?

Isiah Kiner-Falefa stood alone in center field at George M. Steinbrenner Field on Tuesday afternoon, tracking batting-practice drives from a hitting group that included Aaron Judge and Anthony Rizzo. The prospective utility player appeared capable, and the Yankees intend to test him in game situations by week’s end.

The Yankees are getting desperate.

Tarik Subal is already on the 60-day IL.

In leagues with IL slots, he’s a great stash until other injuries start to pile up.

Jeff, one of the authors of the fantasy baseball guide,The Process, writes for RotoGraphs, The Hardball Times, Rotowire, Baseball America, and BaseballHQ. He has been nominated for two SABR Analytics Research Award for Contemporary Analysis and won it in 2013 in tandem with Bill Petti. He has won four FSWA Awards including on for his Mining the News series. He's won Tout Wars three times, LABR twice, and got his first NFBC Main Event win in 2021. Follow him on Twitter @jeffwzimmerman.

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11 months ago

I enjoyed this article