Sox sign Collin McHugh

Green Monster

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Even if he's just a reliever, his track record seems like he should be getting more than 600K + incentives. Something I'm not seeing?

I would assume that teams are being cautious around his off-season elbow procedure (not TJ).
 

JM3

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Dec 14, 2019
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He can also earn up to $4.25 million - there's $3 million of performance bonuses & $650k in roster bonuses.
 

Cesar Crespo

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He can also earn up to $4.25 million - there's $3 million of performance bonuses & $650k in roster bonuses.
I just browsed over the thread again real quickly and maybe I missed it, but do you have a link to the performance bonuses?
 

JM3

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Dec 14, 2019
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I just browsed over the thread again real quickly and maybe I missed it, but do you have a link to the performance bonuses?
Yeah, sorry. I was going to source it, but all the sources I saw looked ugly.

Here's some more detailed info:

McHugh would get $100,000 each for 15, 30, 45 and 60 days on active major league roster and $250,000 for 90 days. He would earn $250,000 apiece for 30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 55, 70, 80, 90, 100, 110 and 115 Innings
 

Cesar Crespo

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Yeah, sorry. I was going to source it, but all the sources I saw looked ugly.

Here's some more detailed info:
So assuming he's healthy all year and in a MR role: at 70 ip, he'd make $3 million. At 80, 3.25. People are smart enough to do the rest. Most of the bonuses seem easily achievable as long as he's healthy, regardless of role. The bonuses at 90-115 innings probably requires a few starts.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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So assuming he's healthy all year and in a MR role: at 70 ip, he'd make $3 million. At 80, 3.25. People are smart enough to do the rest. Most of the bonuses seem easily achievable as long as he's healthy, regardless of role. The bonuses at 90-115 innings probably requires a few starts.
Or being the long man following the opener. A couple 3-4 inning stints a week would add up quickly, and might be the ideal role for a guy with a starter's pedigree coming off elbow surgery.
 

Cesar Crespo

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Or being the long man following the opener. A couple 3-4 inning stints a week would add up quickly, and might be the ideal role for a guy with a starter's pedigree coming off elbow surgery.
If he makes $2.5 million or more this this year, he was probably a huge bargain. Anything less than that and it gets iffy but if he cost $1.5 million for 30 ineffective innings, so what?

Amazing we got this guy at basically no risk.
 

A Bad Man

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Dec 12, 2016
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Yes, this seems like a small victory for Chaim; there must have been at least a dozen other teams dangling something similar or better, and it's not like we are the number one destination for a playoff ticket. Would love to hear the behind the scenes on this one. Simply put, a fantastic signing.
 

YTF

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Posted what's written below on Feb 10th in the 2020 Rotation thread. Given the base if things don't work out and the incentives if they do there's really no reason to not like this signing.

As currently constructed and given the remaining FA's on the market, this pitching staff seems a prime candidate for the opener/bulk reliever scenario. Maybe McHugh could be useful in either of those rolls and can be had for around $5 million or less. 32 years old with elbow issues so he's a gamble but basically everyone available at this point is. He made 5.8 last season and 5 the previous season. Who knows maybe there's still something there.
 
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simplicio

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That pricing structure with the gap between 55 and 70 innings makes me think they're expecting something within that range.
 

geoflin

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Yes, this seems like a small victory for Chaim; there must have been at least a dozen other teams dangling something similar or better, and it's not like we are the number one destination for a playoff ticket. Would love to hear the behind the scenes on this one. Simply put, a fantastic signing.
According to Rotoworld he was waiting for a guaranteed major league contract, this is the first offer he got.
 

mauf

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Even if he's just a reliever, his track record seems like he should be getting more than 600K + incentives. Something I'm not seeing?

He was bad last year and turns 33 in June. There’s a decent chance he’s cooked, even apart from the near-term injury issue.

Don’t get me wrong — I’m glad we got him. But if the reports that he was insistent on a major-league deal are accurate, I’m not surprised he had to settle for an incentive-laden deal with a team that’s probably going to miss the playoffs.
 

BaseballJones

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He was bad last year and turns 33 in June. There’s a decent chance he’s cooked, even apart from the near-term injury issue.
He pitched in 35 games, 8 as a starter, last year.

In his 8 starts, he had two terrible outings - combined line: 6.1 ip, 15 h, 18 r, 17 er, 4 bb, 4 k
In his 27 relief appearances, he had one terrible outing: 1.0 ip, 3 h, 4 r, 4 er, 1 bb, 2 k

So out of 35 games, he had *three* terrible outings - combined line: 7.1 ip, 18 h, 22 r, 21 er, 5 bb, 6 k (25.78 era, 3.14 whip, 7.4 k/9)
In the other 32 games, he was good - combined line: 67.1 ip, 44 h, 23 r, 21 er, 25 bb, 76 k (2.81 era, 0.97 whip, 10.2 k/9)

Obviously the bad games count, but having three bad outings out of 35 that REALLY skewed his overall numbers doesn't scream "cooked" to me. It's not like he was consistently struggling to get people out. Other than the three bad outings, he was pretty damned good all season long.
 

channel 38

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I'm intrigued by the signing so I looked up his pitch makeup.

McHugh is mostly a slider / four-seam pitcher, with a great slider. This is his out pitch. In 2019, he threw it 43% of the time but 56% of the time when he has two strikes on batters. For the Quality of Pitch Average with a minimum of 500 sliders, it ranked 38th, just a tick above old friend, Rick Porcello, and below Adam Ottavino.

The four-seamer sits around 91, with no real swing and miss to it. He throws it more on the first pitch to lefties than to righties, and it gets slugged overall at a .556 clip. So, not great.

He threw his cutter 13% of the time last year and his curveball 9% of the time. However, between the two his cutter had a .144 better differential in BAA and .201 in SLG. Also, remarkably the curve had a .625 BABIP.

As a side note, this is my first time posting. Been reading since at least '03, pre championships and Billy Beane in the movies. Happy to be on board from Austin, TX.
 
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trs

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He pitched in 35 games, 8 as a starter, last year.

In his 8 starts, he had two terrible outings - combined line: 6.1 ip, 15 h, 18 r, 17 er, 4 bb, 4 k
In his 27 relief appearances, he had one terrible outing: 1.0 ip, 3 h, 4 r, 4 er, 1 bb, 2 k

So out of 35 games, he had *three* terrible outings - combined line: 7.1 ip, 18 h, 22 r, 21 er, 5 bb, 6 k (25.78 era, 3.14 whip, 7.4 k/9)
In the other 32 games, he was good - combined line: 67.1 ip, 44 h, 23 r, 21 er, 25 bb, 76 k (2.81 era, 0.97 whip, 10.2 k/9)

Obviously the bad games count, but having three bad outings out of 35 that REALLY skewed his overall numbers doesn't scream "cooked" to me. It's not like he was consistently struggling to get people out. Other than the three bad outings, he was pretty damned good all season long.
Undoubtedly bad games count as you say, but I'm encouraged by these numbers. Given the role that McHugh is seemingly going to play, his primary goal will be to keep games winnable. If that's the case, being damn good 90% of the time and then punting the other games, well, that's not bad at all. Once you start giving up 1.5 runs an inning, what's the difference between that and 3? Meaning if that day you're going to stink, then really stink If McHugh comes in after the opener 9 times out of 10 and gets through 3-4 innings giving up a run each time, I'd say that's very valuable. If 3 times this season he implodes and we're suddenly down 10-2 after the 4th, oh well.

Obviously this assumes he repeats last year's performance, but given good usage, I too like this signing.
 

mauf

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Even if he's just a reliever, his track record seems like he should be getting more than 600K + incentives. Something I'm not seeing?

He was bad last year and turns 33 in June. There’s a decent chance he’s cooked.

I’m still glad we got him, but I understand
He pitched in 35 games, 8 as a starter, last year.

In his 8 starts, he had two terrible outings - combined line: 6.1 ip, 15 h, 18 r, 17 er, 4 bb, 4 k
In his 27 relief appearances, he had one terrible outing: 1.0 ip, 3 h, 4 r, 4 er, 1 bb, 2 k

So out of 35 games, he had *three* terrible outings - combined line: 7.1 ip, 18 h, 22 r, 21 er, 5 bb, 6 k (25.78 era, 3.14 whip, 7.4 k/9)
In the other 32 games, he was good - combined line: 67.1 ip, 44 h, 23 r, 21 er, 25 bb, 76 k (2.81 era, 0.97 whip, 10.2 k/9)

Obviously the bad games count, but having three bad outings out of 35 that REALLY skewed his overall numbers doesn't scream "cooked" to me. It's not like he was consistently struggling to get people out. Other than the three bad outings, he was pretty damned good all season long.
I agree, which is
I'm intrigued by the signing so I looked up his pitch makeup.

McHugh is mostly a slider / four-seam pitcher, with a great slider. This is his out pitch. In 2019, he threw it 43% of the time but 56% of the time when he has two strikes on batters. For the Quality of Pitch Average with a minimum of 500 sliders, it ranked 38th, just a tick above old friend, Rick Porcello, and below Adam Ottavino.

The four-seamer sits around 91, with no real swing and miss to it. He throws it more on the first pitch to lefties than to righties, and it gets slugged overall at a .556 clip. So, not great.

He threw his cutter 13% of the time last year and his curveball 9% of the time. However, between the two his cutter had a .144 better differential in BAA and .201 in SLG. Also, remarkably the curve had a .625 BABIP.

As a side note, this is my first time posting. Been reading since at least '03, pre championships and Billy Beane in the movies. Happy to be on board from Austin, TX.
Welcome aboard! Hope this is the first of many quality posts.

If McHugh needs to throw the slider 43% of the time to be effective, I think we can lay to rest any notion that he’s going to go back to starting. (Unless “starting” means getting the first six outs in a bullpen game.)
 

Savin Hillbilly

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The wrong side of the bridge....
If McHugh needs to throw the slider 43% of the time to be effective, I think we can lay to rest any notion that he’s going to go back to starting. (Unless “starting” means getting the first six outs in a bullpen game.)
It also seems possible that the pretty drastic ramping up of his slider -- he only started using it in 2017 according to Pitch Info*, and his usage of it has jumped from 17 to 43 percent over three years -- may have something to do with his elbow woes. If so, perhaps the Sox' braintrust can help him find a way to rely on it less.

*The BIS version of the pitch type data, as seen at Fangraphs, shows him developing his cutter as a new pitch in 2017 and throwing a slider all along. But the velo/movement graphs at Brooks make a good case that Pitch Info has it right, I think.
 

Green Monster

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Fangraphs roster resource is projecting him to start the season injured? Just a weird data entry mistake or has there been word of a current injury?
Off season procedure on his elbow (non surgical). Just recently started throwing, which is the only reason he was available this time of year. Best case scenario he is a few weeks behind the others.
 

channel 38

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He was bad last year and turns 33 in June. There’s a decent chance he’s cooked.

I’m still glad we got him, but I understand


I agree, which is


Welcome aboard! Hope this is the first of many quality posts.

If McHugh needs to throw the slider 43% of the time to be effective, I think we can lay to rest any notion that he’s going to go back to starting. (Unless “starting” means getting the first six outs in a bullpen game.)

I tend to agree. You have guys like Jhoulys Chacin (50.4%) and Yu Darvish (45.9%) but also Sale and Kershaw were both right under 40%. In McHugh's 2015 season where he threw over 200 innings he threw 39% sliders. So it seems like it's not the number of sliders holding him back, as in an over-reliance on it. Instead, it seems he just needs better pitches beside the slider.

"The Rise of the All-Slider Outing" on Fangraphs had two really interesting notes. The first is that the amount of sliders MLB pitchers are throwing has gone up. From 2014 - 2019, it rose each year, from 13.7% to 18.4%.

The second is:
Sliders have been the most effective pitch on a per-pitch basis nearly every year since we’ve calculated pitch values. The implication is clear — cut fastballs, add sliders, profit.
So I guess if he's going to throw a lot of something, that's the one?
 

Savin Hillbilly

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The wrong side of the bridge....
In McHugh's 2015 season where he threw over 200 innings he threw 39% sliders.
But just to reiterate: that 2015 slider is not the same pitch as his current slider. It's much more like his current cutter, and Pitch Info says it's been a cutter all along. The 2015 "slider" was an 88 mph pitch with 2 inches of glove-side break and +4 inches of vertical break. The 2019 slider is an 80 mph pitch with 10 inches of glove-side break and -1 inches of vertical break.

So it's not necessarily clear that he could throw 200 innings (or 100 innings, for that matter) using that current slider 40% of the time.
 
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A Bad Man

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Dec 12, 2016
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According to Rotoworld he was waiting for a guaranteed major league contract, this is the first offer he got.
Oh, interesting - did other teams not think to lay down something incentive laden? Maybe Tenex surgery is sketchy? I tried researching it but couldn't find much.
 

Pegleg

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Oh, interesting - did other teams not think to lay down something incentive laden? Maybe Tenex surgery is sketchy? I tried researching it but couldn't find much.
Look for Tenex Procedure. Duckduckgo.com is a better search engine (sometimes) than google.
 

The Gray Eagle

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McHugh won't be pitching for the Red Sox any time soon. He hasn't started throwing off a mound yet.


The 32-year-old righthander hasn’t pitched off a mound in six months because of elbow pain related to a flexor tendon strain.
McHugh had a procedure in December that used high frequency vibrations to loosen scar tissue on the tendon.
“It seems to be going really well. We’re still in the rehab process,” he said Friday.
McHugh hopes to start throwing soon but acknowledged there’s no timetable for when he could pitch in a major league game. It clearly won’t be any time soon.
“They’re getting to know me,” McHugh said. “I think we’ll have a better idea moving forward in a couple of weeks in figuring exactly what the road ahead looks like for me.”
 

HangingW/ScottCooper

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He was bad last year and turns 33 in June. There’s a decent chance he’s cooked.

I’m still glad we got him, but I understand


I agree, which is


Welcome aboard! Hope this is the first of many quality posts.

If McHugh needs to throw the slider 43% of the time to be effective, I think we can lay to rest any notion that he’s going to go back to starting. (Unless “starting” means getting the first six outs in a bullpen game.)
It's weird that this is saying you quoted me (or someone with a username like mine)