Go ga-ga for Grandy

1. He’s trending upward

This is Grandy’s 30-year-old season.  A couple years back, The Hardball Times killed it with their intense two-part analysis of how baseball players age.  They found, among many other things, that for the time period from 1980-2008, a player’s peak is their age 28, 29 and 30 seasons.  So enjoy this one, because this is still the time that a five-tool guy like Grandy has it all.

2. He’s underpaid

Grandy is in the middle of a six-year, $30 million contract right now.  It’s crazy to say that a $30 million contract makes anyone underpaid, but when you look at his WAR from last season, his being underpaid is objectively true.  Grandy’s 7.0 WAR was 8th in the majors last season — ahead of guys like Joey Votto, Adrian Gonzalez, Jose Reyes, and Prince Fielder, all of whom have much bigger contracts.

3. He’s smart

Grandy graduated from the University of Illinois-Chicago — with a double major.  … Click here to read the rest

Linsanity, Yankee-style

Joba Chamberlain

The Star-Ledger quotes Joba on Lin:

“Hopefully I get a chance to meet him and wish him the best. Just to be able to talk to him and listen to the things that he’s gone through in this short amount of time. If there’s anybody in New York City that knows what he’s going through, it’s me, and I’m very honored to be able to say that.”

Chamberlain’s meteoric rise in 2007 is without doubt the most recent Yankee example of a similar city-wide craze. Joba’s 0.38 ERA (an ERA+ of 1221!) over 24 innings in ’07 captivated the city, and spawned the “Joba Rules” and countless hours of talk radio fodder.  Joba’s time with the Yankees has since seen its shares of ups and downs, but count us as optimists:  his legacy is yet to be finalized.  As Joba works his way back from injury, Chamberlain cautioned Lin:

“Your game of life is long, but your game in basketball and baseball is really short, and you have to be able to take advantage of that.Click here to read the rest

Posting odds on Vegas-style Yankee lines

Over-Under on A-Rod home runs: 29

If we’re talking about stupid money, what better place to start than lightning A-Rod?

Bill James’ metric is predicting somewhat of a bounce-back season for A-Rod – .277/.373/.497 with 29 homers in 130+ games played – the slash line would equal bumps in both slugging and OBP.  But A-Rod’s home runs per plate appearance have declined every season since 2007

  • 2007 – 7.6%
  • 2008 – 5.9%
  • 2009 – 5.6%
  • 2010 – 5.0%
  • 2011 – 3.7%

Rodriguez’s walk rate improved last season (11%) from 2010 (9.9%), so his plate discipline is still there. Perhaps that translates to the idea that his power output should go back up if he’s healthy and starts swinging again? However, A-Rod has averaged just 124.5 games played and 538 plate appearances per season since 2008. If we’re generous and bump him to 140 games played and 600 plate appearances in 2012, and if we give A-Rod the benefit of the doubt and assume he reverses the downward HR/PA trend (we’ll bump him up to 4%), that still only equals 24 HRs in 2012.… Click here to read the rest