Saturday, December 7, 2013

Baseball awards: NL Edition

I would like to make for End of Season Awards for baseball, so that it is easier for us to make Hall of Fame cases for players, but I'm sure you already know that.  I'll discuss the All-NL team for 2013.  In case you missed it, last time.  I'm choosing 2 players at each non-pitching position.  Then I'm choosing 6 starters and 3 relievers to round out the 25 man roster.  I'll also discuss who I would choose for the MVP and Cy Young Award vote, if I had one.

If I use a term that you're not familiar with, here is a helpful dictionary for the various stats, I use.

Catcher

Name PA ISO AVG OBP SLG wOBA wRC+ BsR Def fWAR WAR/PA
Yadier Molina 541 0.158 0.319 0.359 0.477 0.362 134 -2.2 17.1 5.6 0.0103512
Buster Posey 595 0.156 0.294 0.371 0.45 0.357 133 -4.2 8.2 4.8 0.00806723
Russell Martin 506 0.151 0.226 0.327 0.377 0.315 101 -0.6 22.7 4.1 0.00810277
Jonathan Lucroy 580 0.175 0.28 0.34 0.455 0.345 118 -5.6 10.2 3.6 0.0062069

This one is fairly obvious for the starter's role.  It might be that Yadier Molina is even more valuable if you add in the research that thas been done with pitch framing.  This might not come up with choosing the starter, but I believe that Molina is more valuable than his 5.6 WAR suggests.  Buster Posey had a fantastic offensive season but he was able to rack up even more plate appearances by being plugged in at first base.  Russell Martin added even more value with pitch framing.  Dave Cameron at Fangraphs wrote a fantastic article arguing for Martin's candidacy as an MVP candidate.  I believe that Molina is the starter for this roster.  I will go with Posey as the 2nd catcher but, it's tough.

Starter: Yadier Molina, St. Louis Cardinals
Reserve: Buster Posey, San Francisco Giants

First Base

Name PA ISO AVG OBP SLG wOBA wRC+ BsR Def fWAR
Paul Goldschmidt 710 0.249 0.302 0.401 0.551 0.404 156 0.4 -7 6.4
Joey Votto 726 0.186 0.305 0.435 0.491 0.4 156 -0.6 -10.1 6.2
Freddie Freeman 629 0.181 0.319 0.396 0.501 0.387 150 -1.2 -8.7 4.8
Freddie Freeman had a great season at first base, but it's hard to argue he was better than Joey Votto or Paul Goldschmidt.  The real question is who do I choose as a starter for this team.  While Votto had a superior On-base percentage, his offensive contribution was the same as Paul Goldschmidt.  We're really picking nits at this point.  I think Goldschmidt had a slightly better season than Votto, but it's so close, I'm choosing based on defense and base running.

Starter: Paul Goldschmidt, Arizona Diamondbacks
Reserve: Joey Votto, Cincinnati Reds

Second Base

Name PA ISO AVG OBP SLG wOBA wRC+ BsR Def fWAR Column12
Matt Carpenter 717 0.163 0.318 0.392 0.481 0.381 147 4.1 1.3 7 0.007344633
Chase Utley 531 0.191 0.284 0.348 0.475 0.356 126 1.4 3.3 3.9 0.004900181
Neil Walker 551 0.167 0.251 0.339 0.418 0.333 114 -0.3 0.6 2.7 0.0109375
This one has an obvious starter in Matt Carpenter.  The backup is pretty obvious, too.  Chase Utley had a good season and deserves to be on the team.

Starter: Matt Carpenter, St. Louis Cardinals
Reserve: Chase Utley, Philadelphia Phillies

Third Base

Name PA ISO AVG OBP SLG wOBA wRC+ BsR Def fWAR
David Wright 492 0.207 0.307 0.39 0.514 0.391 155 4.4 5.4 6
Juan Uribe 426 0.16 0.278 0.331 0.438 0.334 116 1.3 25.3 5.1
Chase Headley 600 0.15 0.25 0.347 0.4 0.33 113 -3 9.2 3.6
Todd Frazier 600 0.173 0.234 0.314 0.407 0.319 100 1.3 11.7 3.3
Pedro Alvarez 614 0.24 0.233 0.296 0.473 0.33 111 0.6 1.8 3.1
Ryan Zimmerman 633 0.19 0.275 0.344 0.465 0.353 125 2.8 -12.3 3













David Wright is the obvious choice as the starter.  As for the reserve, I have to question the defensive metrics that show Uribe to be so valuable.  I know he's a former shortstop moving over to third base, so you'd assume he's a good defender there.  But I don't know if he's worth that much.  But even with that caveat, he had a better offensive season than almost every other third baseman.  So, even if you reduce the defensive metrics to be worth closer to 10 runs or 1 win, then Uribe is still ahead of all of them.  I'm torn.  If Ryan Zimmerman didn't have throwing troubles throughout the season, he'd be the obvious choice.  But I think ultimately, I'll choose Uribe because of his good offensive season, even if I think the defensive numbers might inflate his value a bit.

Starter: David Wright, New York Mets
Reserve: Juan Uribe, Los Angeles Dodgers

Shortstop

Troy Tulowitzki 512 0.229 0.312 0.391 0.54 0.4 143 -0.6 11.9 5.6
Hanley Ramirez 336 0.293 0.345 0.402 0.638 0.442 191 -1.1 3.3 5.1
Ian Desmond 655 0.173 0.28 0.331 0.453 0.341 116 3.3 11.6 5
Andrelton Simmons 658 0.149 0.248 0.296 0.396 0.303 91 -1.6 31.6 4.7

This one is basically, how much do you value Hanley Ramirez's season even though he had almost half the plate appearances as the other shortstops.  He had an amazing half season as a shortstop.  I honestly, have no idea.  Ian Desmond had an all-star caliber season in Washington.  Andrelton Simmons would be defensive player of the year if MLB gave out an award like this.  Simmons was a ridiculous defensive shortstop, he had a better than expected offensive season, too.  Ultimately, I think Ramirez's ridiculous half-season should be rewarded.  Even if I get a little upset for devaluing durability a bit.  I'm choosing him as the starter over another injury-prone shortstop in Troy Tulowitzki.

Starter: Hanley Ramirez, Los Angeles Dodgers
Reserve: Troy Tulowitzki, Colorado Rockies

Outfield

Name PA Iso Avg OBP SLG wOBA wRC+ BsR Def fWAR
Andrew McCutchen 674 0.19 0.317 0.404 0.508 0.393 155 5.1 9.3 8.2
Carlos Gomez 590 0.222 0.284 0.338 0.506 0.363 130 6.2 26.5 7.6
Hunter Pence 687 0.2 0.283 0.339 0.483 0.356 133 6.1 -1.9 5.4
Shin-soo Choo 712 0.178 0.285 0.423 0.462 0.393 151 -0.6 -13.3 5.2
Carlos Gonzalez 436 0.289 0.302 0.367 0.591 0.408 149 5.6 2.5 4.9
Jayson Werth 532 0.214 0.318 0.398 0.532 0.403 160 0.3 -9 4.6
Starling Marte 566 0.161 0.28 0.343 0.441 0.344 121 7.2 4.9 4.6
Gerrardo Parra 663 0.135 0.268 0.323 0.403 0.318 96 -0.9 26 4.6
Matt Holliday 602 0.19 0.3 0.389 0.49 0.383 148 2.2 -11.4 4.5
Jay Bruce 697 0.216 0.262 0.329 0.478 0.344 117 0.3 2.8 4.1
Marlon Byrd 579 0.22 0.291 0.336 0.511 0.364 136 0.5 -3.7 4.1
Yaisel Puig 432 0.215 0.319 0.391 0.534 0.398 160 -4.2 -0.7 4
Chris Denorfia 520 0.116 0.279 0.337 0.395 0.323 108 3.1 12.8 3.9
Bryce Harper 497 0.212 0.274 0.368 0.486 0.371 137 1.8 -2.1 3.8
A.J. Pollock 482 0.14 0.269 0.322 0.409 0.321 98 1.5 18.5 3.6
Denard Span 662 0.102 0.279 0.327 0.38 0.313 97 2.4 12.4 3.5
Jayson Heyward 440 0.173 0.254 0.349 0.427 0.344 120 -0.5 9.2 3.4
Justin Upton 643 0.201 0.263 0.354 0.464 0.357 129 5.6 -16.3 3.2
The first two choices for the team are pretty obvious in Andrew McCutchen and Carlos Gomez.  Gomez was a great defender, just like we knew he would be when he was traded for Johann Santana.  I'm not bitter or anything.  McCutchen is one of my favorite players in the league.  He is very entertaining to watch.  For the third outfielder as the starter, I'm choosing the best offensive outfielder in the league in Jayson Werth.  For the reserves, I'm adding Choo, because he wouldn't have to struggle playing centerfield for this team.  I'm not thrilled about it but Pence had a great season.  I trust offensive metrics more than defensive metrics so I'm choosing Carlos Gonzalez over Gerrardo Parra for the final spot. But it's super close.

Starters: Andrew McCutchen, Pittsburgh Pirates
Carlos Gomez, Milwaukee Brewers
Jayson Werth, Washington Nationals

Reserves: Shin-Soo Choo, Cincinnati Reds
Hunter Pence, San Francisco Giants
Carlos Gonzalez, Colorado Rockies

Starting Pitchers

Name IP K/9 ERA FIP xFIP fWAR RA9 WAR fWAR/IP RA9/IP Average
Clayton Kershaw 236 8.85 1.83 2.39 2.88 6.5 8.8 0.02754237 0.037288 0.032415
Adam Wainwright 241.67 8.16 2.94 2.55 2.8 6.2 5.4 0.02565482 0.022345 0.024
Matt Harvey 178.33 9.64 2.27 2 2.63 6.1 6 0.03420625 0.033645 0.033926
Cliff Lee 222.67 8.97 2.87 2.82 2.78 5.1 5.3 0.02290385 0.023802 0.023353
Mat Latos 210.67 7.99 3.16 3.1 3.56 4.4 3.9 0.02088575 0.018512 0.019699
Jhoulys Chacin 197.33 5.75 3.47 3.47 3.97 4.3 4.2 0.02179091 0.021284 0.021538
Jose Fernandez 172.67 9.75 2.19 2.73 3.08 4.2 5.7 0.02432385 0.033011 0.028667
Cole Hamels 220 8.26 3.6 3.26 3.44 4.2 3.1 0.01909091 0.014091 0.016591
A.J. Burnett 191 9.85 3.3 2.8 2.92 4 2.7 0.02094241 0.014136 0.017539
Madison Bumgarner 201.33 8.9 2.77 3.05 3.32 3.7 4.4 0.01837779 0.021855 0.020116
Stephen Strasburg 183 9.39 3 3.21 3.15 3.2 3.3 0.01748634 0.018033 0.01776
Homer Bailey 209 8.57 3.49 3.31 3.34 3.7 3.5 0.01770335 0.016746 0.017225
Zack Greinke 177.67 7.5 2.63 3.23 3.49 2.9 4.8 0.0163224 0.027016 0.021669

Matt Harvey was so great until he got hurt.  Clayton Kershaw had a great season, again.  Adam Wainwright continued his brilliance.  Those are my first three starters.  Cliff Lee and Jose Fernandez join them.  For the final spot, I narrowed it down between Mat Latos and Madison Bumgarner.  I think Bumgarner had the slightly better season, even accounting for the ballpark.  

Starting pitchers: 
Matt Harvey, New York Mets
Clayton Kershaw, Los Angeles Dodgers
Adam Wainwright, St. Louis Cardinals
Cliff Lee, Philadelphia Phillies
Jose Fernandez, Miami Marlins
Madison Bumgarner, San Francisco Giants

Relief Pitchers

Mark Melancon 71 8.87 1.39 1.64 2.05 2.5 2.6 0.03521127 0.03662 0.035915 34 6
Craig Kimbrel 67 13.16 1.21 1.93 1.95 2.2 3.2 0.03283582 0.047761 0.040299 39 5
Kenley Jansen 76.67 13.03 1.88 1.99 2.06 2.2 2.8 0.0286944 0.03652 0.032607 38 8
Aroldis Chapman 63.67 15.83 2.54 2.47 2.07 1.6 1.9 0.02512957 0.029841 0.027485 39 7
Brad Ziegler 73 5.42 2.22 3.4 3.32 0.6 2.1 0.00821918 0.028767 0.018493 37 8
Sergio Romo 60.33 8.65 2.54 2.85 3.2 1.1 1.1 0.01823305 0.018233 0.018233 37 10
Edward Mujica 64.67 6.4 2.78 3.71 3.53 0 1.4 0 0.021648 0.010824 34 6

Outside of Aroldis Chapman's ridiculous strikeouts, it's pretty obvious who the top three relievers were in the National League.  I'd choose Mark Melancon, Craig Kimbrel, and Kenley Jansen.

Cy Young voting:

5. Cliff Lee, Philadelphia Phillies
4. Jose Fernandez, Miami Marlins
3. Matt Harvey, New York Mets
2. Adam Wainwright, St. Louis Cardinals
1. Clayton Kershaw, Los Angeles Dodgers

Despite Harvey's dominance with rate stats, he pitched 50 or 60 innings less than Wainwright or Kershaw.  I have a hard time saying that Harvey produced more value than Wainwright or Kershaw.

MVP Voting:

10. Jayson Werth, RF, Washington Nationals
9. Matt Harvey, SP, New York Mets
8. Adam Wainwright, SP, St. Louis Cardinals
7. Clayton Kershaw, SP, Los Angeles Dodgers
6. Matt Carpenter, 2B, St. Louis Cardinals
5. Joey Votto, 1B, Cincinnati Reds
4. Paul Goldschmidt, 1B, Arizona Diamondbacks
3. Carlos Gomez, CF, Milwaukee Brewers
2. Yadier Molina, C, St. Louis Cardinals
1. Andrew McCutchen, CF, Pittsburgh Pirates
 


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