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Should we bullish on Nationals hitters in 2008?

 
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levski
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 8:56 am    Post subject: Should we bullish on Nationals hitters in 2008? Reply with quote

The new ballpark gives us reasons to believe we probably should...

http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/baseball/bal-sp.dcstadium05feb05,0,7931299.story?track=rss

Quote:
The stadium's modest size is among its most striking features. The first row of the lower bowl is 16 feet closer to the field than its counterpart at roomy, 46-year-old RFK Stadium, the last major league stadium to open in the District of Columbia. RFK was the home of the Nationals for three seasons while the new, $611 million facility was being constructed.

Everything about the stadium seems smaller than RFK - particularly the power alleys, which are 377 and 370 feet, respectively, from home plate.

"I'm confident it's going to play smaller than RFK," said Kasten, a New Jersey-raised lawyer who served as president of three teams simultaneously when he worked for Ted Turner's Atlanta-based sports empire before resigning in 2003.

Kasten said there are too many variables to accurately predict whether Nationals Park - its name until naming rights are sold - will be more of a hitters' park or a pitchers' park.

One variable is wind. Beyond the outfield are two parking garages with a 200-foot gap in between. "I don't know if that'll be a wind tunnel," Kasten said.




Then again, maybe this is just wishful thinking since I bought low on Felipe Lopez in my NL only keeper league...
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levski
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 8:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Btw, Oden, did you get tickets for opening day at the new Nats stadium? Are you going?
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shoewizard
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 9:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Short gaps means fewer doubles and triples for the line drive, gap hitter types, but more homers for the FB types.

The one guy who profiles to benefit the most from the new stadium is Ryan Zimmerman. I predict a big homer year for him.

Lopez is a GB and Line Drive hitter. He might get a couple extra homers out of it, but probably not that many. Guys like Dmitri Young, Austin Kearns...they are more line drive, gap type hitters too. I don't see them getting a huge boost to their overall numbers, but again, perhaps a few more homers.

The guy to target is Zimmerman. Big year coming.
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levski
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 9:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

True about Zimmerman... but he's not available in my league

Eyeballing Zimmerman's GB/FB/LD graph

http://www.fangraphs.com/graphs.aspx?playerid=4220&position=3B&page=9&type=full

Say he averages 40% GB/40% FB/20%LD

His HR/FLY% was 12.0% in 2007, 12.2% in 2006. Question is, how much higher to you want to bump his HR/FLY% ratio?

One extreme flyball hitter in a very home run friendly park is Burrell

http://www.fangraphs.com/graphs.aspx?playerid=949&position=LF&page=9&type=full

Burrell's been averaging about 15-16% HR/FLY% over the last few years

So if you give Zimmerman 16% HR/FLY% in 2008, you bump his HR total by 25% from 2006/2007 average (he averaged 22 homers)

So that would give him the potential of being 30 home run guy. Not bad.

***

Back to Lopez

Lopez has a fairly typical 50% GB/30% FB/20% LD split

http://www.fangraphs.com/graphs.aspx?playerid=1311&position=2BSS&page=9&type=full

What killed him in WAS was the fact that his HR/FLY% dropped from

16.9% in 2005 and 10.0% in 2006 (first half) to

3.5% in 2006 (second half) and 6.4% in 2007

http://www.hardballtimes.com/thtstats/main/player/index.php?playerId=1311&firstName=Felipe&lastName=Lopez

If you give him 10-11% HR/FLY% in 2008 (reasonable, not outlandish), he's got a decent chance to hit 20 homers again...
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shoewizard
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 10:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree that the new ballpark should help Lopez roto value. Your numbers look reasonable.

I was thinking about Zimmerman more for my league. He's available in this years draft. And he's one of the reasons I may not keep Reynolds.

I wonder if Nick Johnson is worth a late round flyer. Rotoworld:

Quote:

Nick Johnson has "no remaining physical limitation" after missing all of last season with a broken leg.
Johnson, who has been working out in Sacramento, had his recovery slowed by a titanium rod that was inserted in his hip. The rod was causing him pain, but has since been removed, and Johnson is expected to be ready for Opening Day. Whether he wins a starting job over Dmitri Young remains to be seen.
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levski
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 11:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

shoewizard wrote:
I agree that the new ballpark should help Lopez roto value. Your numbers look reasonable.

I was thinking about Zimmerman more for my league. He's available in this years draft. And he's one of the reasons I may not keep Reynolds.

I wonder if Nick Johnson is worth a late round flyer. Rotoworld:

Quote:

Nick Johnson has "no remaining physical limitation" after missing all of last season with a broken leg.
Johnson, who has been working out in Sacramento, had his recovery slowed by a titanium rod that was inserted in his hip. The rod was causing him pain, but has since been removed, and Johnson is expected to be ready for Opening Day. Whether he wins a starting job over Dmitri Young remains to be seen.



Pass on Johnson

You should keep Reynolds and still get Zimmerman. Move Braun to the OF
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SheriffWannaBe
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 4:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've got 4 spots on my team. Reynolds is my starting 3B ( Very Happy )

Guys I'm considering:

Jay Bruce
Chris Carpenter
Clayton Kershaw
Evan Longoria
Jacob McGee
Ryan Zimmerman

Assume I should be able to get any of those 4. Which do you think I should get? (It's a full keeper league)
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shoewizard
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 5:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bruce
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levski
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 6:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

shoewizard wrote:
Bruce


Or Evan. Can't go wrong with either
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Oden
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 6:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

levski wrote:
Btw, Oden, did you get tickets for opening day at the new Nats stadium? Are you going?


Tickets will go on sale in early March. The plane tickets are purchased and the hotel is booked, so I'm going no matter how much a ticket costs me.
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shoewizard
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 7:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

levski wrote:
shoewizard wrote:
Bruce


Or Evan. Can't go wrong with either


Yeah, I figured since he was keeping Reynolds, may as well keep the Outfielder.
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SheriffWannaBe
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 7:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

KK so I'm at Evan and Bruce. I still need 2 more.

Chris Carpenter
Clayton Kershaw
Jacob McGee
Ryan Zimmerman
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shoewizard
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 7:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Forget Carpenter......too risky

Zimmerman is probably the best bet there. The two young pitchers are awesome prospects...but TINSTAAPP and all that.

As we were discussing earlier....Zim is going to a better park for hitters most likely, and he should be just entering his prime years soon. Sure he was down a little from Rookie numbers, but he rebounded nicely.

He's going to be just 23 years old and he already has closer to 1500 PA's and a 113 Career OPS+

I figure he is ready to popoff about 5 really good season starting in 2008
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SheriffWannaBe
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 8:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I really like the prospect of having Carpenter stashed away tho. We own 32 players, but only use 18 of them. IDK, it's just back in 2005 when we first drafted this league I took Carpenter in the first round, so I still have my emotional ties to him Razz

I am tempted to take Zim tho. Only problem -- I not only have to decide between him and Longoria to start, but I also have to bench The Sheriff. Confused

I do agree tho. This new ballpark looks like it was customized for Zim.
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