Going to LAAA in 2018 - Shohei Ohtani

Sad Sam Jones

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I'm not a fan of their ownership or management, but baseball could really use a good Angels team.
 

Sad Sam Jones

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Ohtani returned from his blister issue and continued to be wildly effective. With four shutout innings tonight, he's now allowed just one earned run on 3 hits over 8.2 innings while striking out 14... but he's also walked 11. He threw more balls than strikes tonight and is only at 53% strikes over his two starts.
 

Kliq

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People who know more about how WAR is calculated can enlighten me, but it feels like Ohtani is being undervalued at only 4.6 bWAR. I think he is being dinged for being a DH, but does that really reflect his true value given the only reason he is a DH is because he is also a starting pitcher, and that he would probably be a solid defensive outfielder if he wasn't a pitcher?
 

BigSoxFan

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Guerrero currently leads Ohtani in fWAR so 4.1 to 3.9 so it's pretty close.
Yeah, Vlad has a very real shot at the Triple Crown and through almost half a season, is putting up better numbers than any Manny season. Ohtani, on the other hand, is OPS'ing almost 1.000 while providing significant pitching contributions. From a pure value standpoint, I think it should be Ohtani but hard to know how voters will land.
 

Awesome Fossum

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People who know more about how WAR is calculated can enlighten me, but it feels like Ohtani is being undervalued at only 4.6 bWAR. I think he is being dinged for being a DH, but does that really reflect his true value given the only reason he is a DH is because he is also a starting pitcher, and that he would probably be a solid defensive outfielder if he wasn't a pitcher?
Hmm. Does it matter why he's DHing? He's still only contributing to the team as a pitcher and a DH.

Either way, hopefully he stops slacking in 2022 and starts playing the field.
 

Kliq

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Hmm. Does it matter why he's DHing? He's still only contributing to the team as a pitcher and a DH.

Either way, hopefully he stops slacking in 2022 and starts playing the field.
Isn't DH'ing weighted in WAR by the assumption that the player DH'ing is a bad fielder, so that they supply negative dWAR? Ohtani is a rare case of DH'ing not because he is a poor defender, but because he is too valuable to play RF. I don't know if it is fair to penalize him for being a DH (he is at -0.5 dWAR this season) the same way it was fair to penalize someone like Oritz.
 

pokey_reese

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Well, I think it's less that the assumption that the player is a bad fielder and more specifically that the DH is providing no defensive value, period, compared to other position players.

While the fWAR is close, I do think that people are underestimating a.) the extra value Ohtani brings by having your DH and SP1 combined only occupy a single roster spot, which isn't captured in WAR, and also b.) the sheer novelty of what he is doing will sway voters, who like to vote for something new and exciting.

Even on the WAR side, looking at fWAR tells one story, but bWAR has Ohtani solidly ahead 4.6 to Vladito's 3.8
 

OurF'ingCity

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the extra value Ohtani brings by having your DH and SP1 combined only occupy a single roster spot, which isn't captured in WAR
Yeah, this is why - if he keeps it up - the contract negotiations for Ohtani (whether extension talks with the Angels or if he goes to FA) will be so interesting. Because theoretically if he can provide, say, 5 WAR as a batter and 1.5-2 WAR as a pitcher, teams should be paying him not only what they'd otherwise pay a 6.5-7 WAR player but also the additional amount that they'd have to pay an additional player to fill the second roster spot, which in Ohtani's case means whatever the team would otherwise be paying a mid-to-back rotation type of guy.
 

pokey_reese

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Yeah, this is why - if he keeps it up - the contract negotiations for Ohtani (whether extension talks with the Angels or if he goes to FA) will be so interesting. Because theoretically if he can provide, say, 5 WAR as a batter and 1.5-2 WAR as a pitcher, teams should be paying him not only what they'd otherwise pay a 6.5-7 WAR player but also the additional amount that they'd have to pay an additional player to fill the second roster spot, which in Ohtani's case means whatever the team would otherwise be paying a mid-to-back rotation type of guy.
True, though if I'm a team and his agent proposes that, I'm also going to counter with the increased injury risk being taken on by playing both positions as a mitigating element. Probably not enough to fully offset that value, but it's going to be a chunk, unless he manages to stay pretty healthy from here on out.
 

Gdiguy

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Well, I think it's less that the assumption that the player is a bad fielder and more specifically that the DH is providing no defensive value, period, compared to other position players.

While the fWAR is close, I do think that people are underestimating a.) the extra value Ohtani brings by having your DH and SP1 combined only occupy a single roster spot, which isn't captured in WAR, and also b.) the sheer novelty of what he is doing will sway voters, who like to vote for something new and exciting.

Even on the WAR side, looking at fWAR tells one story, but bWAR has Ohtani solidly ahead 4.6 to Vladito's 3.8
Well, I don't know that we've usually included the latter novelty in even say MVP voting (as opposed to something like HoF voting, which would include that kind of thing)

I agree though; I was trying to look up the former this morning, and I couldn't find anything quickly - has anyone actually tried to calculate the value of having an additional roster slot? I kind of assume someone would've tried to estimate it at one point to properly value say a utility guy that can cover 6 positions, but I don't actually know what that value is
 

Yelling At Clouds

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It’s just astonishing to me that the Angels are somehow now wasting a SECOND generational/historic/all-time talent. I hope they can get it together one of these seasons.
 

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Well, I don't know that we've usually included the latter novelty in even say MVP voting (as opposed to something like HoF voting, which would include that kind of thing)

I agree though; I was trying to look up the former this morning, and I couldn't find anything quickly - has anyone actually tried to calculate the value of having an additional roster slot? I kind of assume someone would've tried to estimate it at one point to properly value say a utility guy that can cover 6 positions, but I don't actually know what that value is
The value is whatever you happen to do with the extra roster slot. It could allow you to carry a rule 5 guy who will turn into something great in the future, or it could be Danny Santana. There's no way to just stick a number on it, no matter how much WAR fanatics have made it seem like everything in baseball can be boiled down to one number. But on average, the value of the 26th (or a theoretical 27th) player on a roster is not high.
 

jon abbey

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The value is whatever you happen to do with the extra roster slot. It could allow you to carry a rule 5 guy who will turn into something great in the future, or it could be Danny Santana. There's no way to just stick a number on it, no matter how much WAR fanatics have made it seem like everything in baseball can be boiled down to one number. But on average, the value of the 26th (or a theoretical 27th) player on a roster is not high.
I think it's more complicated than that, unless I'm misunderstanding you. For instance, if you use the extra spot for an additional reliever, maybe that reliever's WAR is only 0.5, but it's hard to put a value on the pressure that that additional reliever takes off of the rest of your bullpen.
 

Max Power

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I think it's more complicated than that, unless I'm misunderstanding you. For instance, if you use the extra spot for an additional reliever, maybe that reliever's WAR is only 0.5, but it's hard to put a value on the pressure that that additional reliever takes off of the rest of your bullpen.
I guess, but the last guy in the bullpen doesn't get into many games anyway. Having an additional arm even worse than that doesn't strike me as super valuable. Maybe a modern day Herb Washington would be helpful in ways that are hard to put a fixed number on.
 

Leskanic's Thread

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It’s just astonishing to me that the Angels are somehow now wasting a SECOND generational/historic/all-time talent. I hope they can get it together one of these seasons.
Yup. And while he fell off a cliff quickly, they also signed one of the best hitters in the game in Pujols, and did less than nothing with him. Orange County is just a wasteland.
 

BigSoxFan

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It’s just astonishing to me that the Angels are somehow now wasting a SECOND generational/historic/all-time talent. I hope they can get it together one of these seasons.
At the same time...I know there have been injuries to Trout and Ohtani but, man, blowing this window is like an NFL team getting an All Pro QB in Round 5 or 6 and blowing their rookie deal window. Ohtani is dirt cheap right now.
 

The Raccoon

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SF Giants used the DH last night at the Angels
the Angels did not use the DH and their pitcher batted second.

per ESPN that has never happened before
Earlier today I stumbled into the box score of this game as well - and it looked kind of "unfair" to the Angels.
It was an 13 inning game and Ohtani pitched 6 innings while allowing 1 earned run. So far all's fine for them but...
after Ohtani left the game, since the Angels didn't use a DH to start the game, they had to act like a NL team by bringing in a PH every time the pitchers spot was up. Since they were a bit shorthanded due to injury already, this ultimately led to them using their backup catcher to PH and when Suzuki later got injured they had to give an OF his first MLB action behind the plate because there was no one left to catch.
The Angels finally collapsed in the 13th when SF scored 7 runs.

Long story short: With your starting pitcher hitting for himself you turn into a NL team once your SP leaves the game. With SP having shorter and shorter starts and the DH coming to the NL as well, this feels weird to me.
I think having rare two-way talents like Shohei should be an advantage and as a fan of baseball I wanna see him hit AND pitch if I turn on the game. Not having him be replaced by a worse hitting DH in the lineup because his team wants to stay flexible in case they want to go to their pen early or the game goes into the 13th inning.

I'm not the first to think of that, but why not open up the DH rule so the DH can replace every defensive spot in the lineup.
In 99% of cases you still replace your pitcher, but if you have a good hitting SP you can take advantage of that and cover up your catcher or SS or whatever. And once the SP gets replaced you can just use a double switch and go to the traditional "DH hits for the pitcher" style of play if you want.
 

Njal

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Ohtani should be able to DH for himself, playing two separate roles. Once he's taken out as a pitcher, he stays in as DH for the rest of the game.
 

E5 Yaz

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He's batting leadoff tonight, which I'm guessing is to maximize his number of plate appearances, but is not having a good first inning on the mound
 

Max Power

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He's batting leadoff tonight, which I'm guessing is to maximize his number of plate appearances, but is not having a good first inning on the mound
If he's going to play like this against the Yankees, they should just trade him to the Twins.
 

Awesome Fossum

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I was just thinking about Ohtani and the extra reliever discussion -- the Angels are using a six-man rotation (I think for his sake), so he's not actually creating an extra roster spot.
 

Kliq

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Simmons and Russillo also had the lame conversation about why Ohtani isn't a bigger deal and what that means for baseball's relevance. It's such a boring conversation; especially because our pop culture is so varied in 2021 that NOTHING is going to be as big or as important as things in the past.

FWIW, I hear people talk about Ohtani all the time. 60 Minutes ran a big story on him a few weeks ago, he is usually one of the first things they talk about on SportsCenter, MLB pushes every at-bat he has on YouTube and their social media, there is mainstream press covering him all the time. He passes the Mom test for me, IDK what people expect. Should he be appearing on the Ed Sullivan Show?
 

Madmartigan

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For the record, Statcast has that one at 463 ft. Is this dude gonna hit 60 bombs? Hopefully the derby doesn’t fuck up his swing.
 

sean1562

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View: https://twitter.com/KleinschmidtJD/status/1417313511840092163


View: https://twitter.com/SamBlum3/status/1417351795634888706?s=20


What a guy. Currently has a .277/.362/.686(!!!)/1.047 batting line and a 3.21 ERA in 73 IPs. He just turned 27 years old. 6.1 bWAR. The confidence it has to take to move from Japan to Los Angeles and insist on doing something players havent done in decades is astounding. He is exceeding all expectations while coming across as a really decent human being.

edit: Manny agrees

View: https://twitter.com/hgomez27/status/1417357774510600192?s=21
 
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sean1562

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Has a 1.040 OPS, a 172 OPS+ and a 3.08 ERA, a 154 ERA+. Literally hitting like career year JD Martinez while pitching like the 2017 version of Chris Sale. Absolutely ridiculous.
 

Cesar Crespo

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I hope this starts a trend with players both hitting and pitching and that the DH rules are altered a little to let pitchers hit without handicapping the team.
 

Kliq

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The craziest thing about Ohtani is that nobody has ever really tried this before. He keeps getting compared to Ruth, but Ruth was never a pitcher AND a hitter at his peak. He was an ace pitcher that hit well, but didn't hit much on his off-days. Ohtani is doing both, full-time. It's complete insanity. I think about Reds prospect Hunter Greene, who was a really tremendous hitter in high school and legitimately would have been a top prospect whether or he chose hitting or pitching. He chose pitching, and rarely hits now in the minors.
 

NJ_Sox_Fan

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Makes me wish that guys like Mike Hampton got to hit more often, just to see what they could have done with the bat on a regular basis.
 

Cesar Crespo

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The craziest thing about Ohtani is that nobody has ever really tried this before. He keeps getting compared to Ruth, but Ruth was never a pitcher AND a hitter at his peak. He was an ace pitcher that hit well, but didn't hit much on his off-days. Ohtani is doing both, full-time. It's complete insanity. I think about Reds prospect Hunter Greene, who was a really tremendous hitter in high school and legitimately would have been a top prospect whether or he chose hitting or pitching. He chose pitching, and rarely hits now in the minors.
Yeah. Even Casey Kelly did half a season of each in the minors. Here's to seeing more in the future, hopefully.
 

ledsox

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Just read in my my community paper that the Rays drafted a SS that throws 97 but he doesn’t like pitching, though he has been great on the mound in HS.

No doubt there are guys with the talent to do this but obviously, conviction is key.

With Ohtani, there is also the fact that the Angels, with their dearth of pitching are forced to go with a six man rotation. He’s been amazing but that’s a challenge they have yet to figure out.