Mr. Cabrera? This is from ... Mike Trout.
Kershaw being left off of 2 ballots. Is that completley insane?
Yes. I'm glad the ballots are all public now, although I'm disappointed more writers haven't come forward to justify their votes, like those, or Weaver over Verlander, or Pacheco being on a ROY ballot.
If you were a food critic would SLAM me the way this dude did or just walk out and refuse to rate?
Is it that different from me going to see and review "Trouble with the Curve?" We all knew it would be terrible.
Are you expecting Cabrera to win tonight? I am, but Trout should win.
I am, and of course Trout should win.
Do you think some writers are petty enough to leave someone off the ballot to give their choice better chance of winning? I don't want to be that cynical
Yes, I do. I'd really hope to be wrong.
Would you have objected if Miley had won rookie of the year? He was every bit as good as Harper.
No, I wouldn't have. Just wasn't my choice.
Wow... I'm okay with Miami selling off some pieces, but Nicolino, Marsnick and Hechavarria is a pretty lousy package. I would have thought they could have gotten such a package for Johnson alone. Maybe more.
I think they focused more on moving money and less on maximizing prospect return. Break those players up and you get more prospects - but you probably get stuck with Buck and have to throw in a little money to move Buehrle.
Limicolous? Sciamachy? Are you trying to insert one obscure word into each column from now on? If so, I like it.
My editors gave me a hard time over limicolous so I was trying to use a really obscure word in today's column just to annoy them.
If you were from miami, would you be looking for a new team to root for? Even with the WS wins, some years they don't even field a major league team
If I was from Miami I doubt I would have ever been a Marlins fan anyway.
The trade the Blue Jays makes Boston push harder for Hamilton give the extra year?
I don't think so - I get the sense the Red Sox are trying not to entangle themselves with new long-term commitments now that they've gotten rid of the old ones. But I think it does increase the pressure on the Yankees to upgrade their roster.
This is all part of my plan to free up space to sign Josh Hamilton for 9 years, 230 million.
With $229 million spread over years 2 through 9.
Am I the next on the Move.. Can I go to Colorado and become the next Todd Helton? I assume I can be had quite cheap and think my upside can be prtty darn good if my bulky knee holds up.
I think you're held back by that injury - Stephania Bell pointed out to me before the season that you needed to get your lower half stronger to be able to stay healthy and continue to generate power. Of course, another team may do a better job of keeping your conditioning up.
I'm curious about your comments that Posey playing both catcher and first are to his credit. I figured you'd think spending time at first reduces his value, especially compared to Molina, who nearly always caught.
That's reflected in their adjusted stats, like WAR, which compares performance to replacement level at each position played. But I do think there's an added degree of difficulty to playing two positions - something I'd consider irrelevant if two players were separated by a win or so, but a useful point to consider when we've got two or three players separated by less than half a win.
I'd much rather consider stuff like that than "HIS TEAM MADE TEH PLAYOFFS!!>!>!?" arguments.
Mike Wilbon keeps insisting that anyone voting for Trout over Cabrera just has an agenda and isn't worth listening to. Thoughts?
He hasn't listened to me, apparently.
Bug Selig says the Jays/Marlins trade is "under review." Nothing to that, right?
All trades are reviewed.
This whole Miami mess has to make us Pirate fans feel better, right?
Hoka hey. By the way, the Pirates denying permission for the Yanks to interview their northern Texas/Oklahoma scout for a promotion - the scout subsequently quit - was really unfortunate. I don't think any team should ever deny permission when the potential job would be an upgrade.
Heya Keith. How far off do you think Gary Brown is from The Show? Can the Giants afford to let Pagan walk, especially since he is seeking something in the 5/$60 range?
Given Brown's performance this year and how he looked in the AFL, I'm not so sure he's the long-term answer in CF any more.
Think Trout gets left off any ballots tonight?
No, but I wouldn't be surprised if one or both of the Detroit voters put him fifth.
4th outfielder should be calhoun, not wells right?
Prof Klaw, thought's on the Hunter-Tigers deal?
Careful with the Professor stuff, everyone knows my alma mater is just a diploma mill.
I'm fine with one year of Hunter at that price, but the potential for him to go over the cliff, given his age and present skill set, is way too high to go two years. He helps them now, but I'd say there's a 30-40% chance that's dead money in 2014.
Did you know when you submitted your RoY vote that the votes would be made public this year? I know you've always been willing to share who you voted for, but other writers aren't.
I did not. I might have missed a memo somewhere, but I was unaware that ballots would be made public until Monday afternoon.
Thoughts on Scott Baker/Cubs signing?
No-brainer. Classic Theo/Jed signing.
Trevor Bauer had a tale of two seasons. He was really good in the minors. But wild and largely inneffective in the majors. is this due to his not trusting his stuff as we have heard? Is he still a possible ace in your eyes?
He also wasn't 100% healthy in the majors after a groin injury in his first outing. But there's clearly a communication issue going on as well - he's still trying to get guys to chase stuff out of the zone that college hitters chased but big league hitters won't. His stuff is good enough to miss bats in or at least near the zone. He needs to pitch that way - and I do think Montero and the D-backs' coaches have told him that.
I'm still waiting for anyone to explain how the failure of anyone else to achieve a Triple Crown for 44 years made Cabrera more valuable this year. Did Detroit get bonus wins I don't know about? It would be nice if people would just admit when they're voting for "Best Story", not "MVP".
The narrative helped Dickey win the Cy. It's alive and well in sportswriting.
How does this year's AFL compare to previous years?
Worst pitching crop I've seen. The college starters who used to sign on August 15th and come here now sign on July 15th and are shut down.
Lay off the Detroit voters. They've been fine this year. Hell, one of them even voted for Price over Verlander. It's the LA writers that put Weaver over Verlander. It's more likely we see Cabrera at 5th in LA, than Trout at 5th in Detroit.
Yes, but we've got some Detroit voters with histories of homer voting.
Whatever happened to the OF the angels drafted one spot ahead of Trout? Grichuk right? He any good or just massively overshadowed by Trouts accomplishments?
He was here in the AFL. Fringy prospect, has never figured out the breaking ball, still has dead-pull raw power.
I know I'm a little biased being Italian, but do you think Alex Liddi could thrive in an environment outside of Seattle?
Japan, maybe. I don't think he's an MLB regular. And I'm biased for the same reason you are - I just can't ignore what's in front of us. Marten Gasperini is our next great hope.
Re: the AL MVP. Isn't there a non-WAR argument for Trout. Plus defense at a premium position along with great base running and similar offensive numbers (in wRC+ and wOBA)?
I made this argument in September, specifically tailoring it to address people who want to throw WAR out because they don't like what it says.
To Phil (Michigan)'s point, we ARE more likely to see Cabrera 5th in LA because it could be argued he was only the 5th most valuable player.
That's fair. Ranking either guy 3rd instead of 2nd will look outrageous (more so for Trout), but the points system means you'd really have to bury a guy to skew the vote against him.
How bad was Price winning the Cy Young over Verlander? Just a little bad or really bad?
A little bad. Not worth boiling the tar and plucking the chickens over.
The income tax situation for ball players in Toronto is exaggerated wouldn't you say? Although it's higher than in Florida, it's on par with New York...
At the time I worked there, the marginal rate in Toronto was higher than in any other MLB market.
Thinking of trying duck fat fried smashed potatoes, like what was posted on Serious Eats' The Food Lab just recently. Never worked with duck fat before. Any tips on buying/using?
Buy a whole duck, cook it, save the fat you rendered, because duck is awesome. Plus you get the bones to make duck stock. I've never actually bought duck fat.
Many rational arguments have been made in favour of Trout being the MVP. Is there a rational argument in favour of Cabrera?
I have not seen one.
What is your projection for Darin Ruf? Is the Matt Holliday comparison way too generous?
It is absolute nonsense.
What are the odds Huntington will trade Hanrahan? Would you?
They should have dealt him last winter. He's a luxury on a below-.500 team. And his value has been declining.
Would you start Wong over Descalso/Schumaker next year? Not saying he was a deserving 1st rounder...
Maybe by midyear. Not sure he's ready right away.
At what point in 2013 do you think it is reasonable for Kyle Gibson to be in the Twins rotation?
As soon as he's built up the durability. Stuff is ready now.
Reheated smoked chicken skin is not as good as the rest of the reheated smoked chicken
Reheat it in a dry skillet until crispy. It's like meat candy.
In the mood to bury some of your colleagues? Here's your chance:Jim Bowden: He wins the MVP for me slightly over Trout because he won the Triple Crown and his team made it to the postseason.Richard Durrett: I understand the WAR argument for Trout, but Cabrera played solid defense and got the Triple Crown. He gets the nod from me.Peter Pascarelli: A feat not done in 45 years trumps analytics.
None of those arguments is rational. They all rely on logical fallacies and, in Richard's case, an inaccuracy (Cabrera didn't play solid defense).
The more the days pass the more nervous I'm getting that the Reyes-JJ deal wont go through. What is the hold up?
Everyone had to pass a physical.
Do the Jays still have a high-end farm system? Top 10?
Yes. Didn't put a huge dent in their talent level.
What is your scouting report on Korea's Ryu Hyun-jin. Are the Dodgers doing the right thing is trying to obtain him?
I've only seen video. Scouts I've talked to see him anywhere from impact reliever to fringe #3 starter. I don't like the body and I wish he had a better present breaking ball, because at his age it's unlikely it'll improve. More likely a reliever to me, but again, I didn't see him live and I won't be shocked if he ends up a league-average starter at some point.
Who has the higher upside, G Polanco or A Hanson?
Polanco. Hanson's the better current prospect, and I do believe he stays at SS.
With the Jays getting Buck in this deal (really they could have said no and not gotten the extra cash sent) doesn't this mean that JP is for sure a goner? If so what is JP worth? I know your not particularly high on him but could he be used in a package for Niese or Ogando?
Could use Buck and JPA for half a year and let d'Arnaud play in a normal AAA environment and prove he's healthy.
Keith, I enjoy your reading yout recaps and reactions to Top Chef episodes. Not sure if you have addressed this before, but do you feel that the "reality TV" aspects of the show (surprises, need for drama) make it difficult to consider it a serious cooking show?
The established chefs involved take it very seriously, so I think it's fair for us to do so even as we laugh at any encouraged-drama within it.
Gun to your head, you have to pick one of Jorge Soler, Albert Almora, or Javier Baez-- which one, why?
At the time of the trade, how did you rank the Lansing 3?
Nicolino in between the two.
Are you buying what the Cardinals are stating about Piscotty and his ability to be a regular RF?
Is it fair, or even accurate, to define Japanese veterans like Darvish and Ichiro as rookies when they join MLB?
Keep hearing that Jed and Theo are sniffing around 3rd basemen (Chisenhall, Keppinger, etc) to fill the spot for next season. Do you think Vitters gets moved then? Seems like more value would come from a trade.
I don't know that Vitters has any value at this point.
Who would you prefer to have for their career, Rosenthal or Miller?
Are you going to read Les Miserables before watching the movie? I've noticed you don't have a lot of my longer favorites on your Top 10 books list. Any particular reason for avoiding legtheny novels?
I often get antsy when I'm mired in a long novel and see a long queue of unread books on my shelf. I've got about 25 pages left in the Recognitions (953 total) and I can't wait to be done with it. A couple of readers have told me Les Mis is extremely slow - and it's something like 1400 pages - so I'm not going to pick that up any time soon. Plus I've seen the musical twice.
People talk about Xander Bogaerts power potential. Do they mean his power is great relative to other SS or does he have the potential for 40 homers in the future?
Legit 30+ HR power. Ball flies off his bat.
This will never happen, but how would you feel if the Cardinals put Rosenthal in the bullpen next year and had him pitch twice a week for a combined 4-5 innings?
I'd love it. Gives him a chance to continue to refine his offspeed stuff.
Who has more upside - Gose or Marisnick?
What's the prognosis for Wilmer Flores now? I know a guy gets discounted for repeating A+ twice, even when he's young, but he impressed at Binghamton at age 20. How would he compare to Cheslor Cuthbert?
Much better than it was a year ago. Still probably a 1B or bad LF, but the bat has finally caught up with the scouting reports. Should hit and hit for enough power to profile at either spot.
I can understand credit for playing a more demanding position, but is it fair to penalize players for things that are out of their control during award voting? I'm talking about aspects like a favorable home ballpark or weaker schedule. Isn't this akin to giving a player credit because he played for a playoff team?
It's about valuing a player's production accurately. If a player plays in Coors, the value of a HR is lower than it would have been had he hit it at Petco - and there's a chance that HR wouldn't have left the park at all had he hit it at sea level.
The Affeldt deal is insane, right?
Totally. He's being paid to produce at a level he has never reached since becoming a full-time reliever. His performance has never matched his stuff, unfortunately.
Just wanted to say, I hope you enjoyed talking with your daughter about the number of female senators in office. I'm conservative and was disappointed by some results that night, but I thought your tweet was really, really cool.
I did. She seemed impressed. Now I'm just glad she has no idea who Hope Solo is.
Is the length of the books teh reason you have not read Game of Thrones or any of "A Song of Ice and Fire" novels?
That's just not a genre I typically enjoy.
Brandon League's deal, good or bad?
Stop giving relievers three-year deals. They don't hold up - they get hurt, their performance year-to-year is too volatile, and plenty of teams have found value in the one-year reliever market over the past five offseasons.
When does Otani sign? Who would you compare him to in the majors for his potential?
He's under control to the NPB club that drafted him. Unless he's posted, he ain't coming.
In TTR, do most people usually stay away from the west coast? It's usually a free board to train around, with everyone going central-east, based upon my games.
Yes, I think the longer city-to-city routes there discourages players, at least newer ones, but it's hard to win without going across the board at least once.
Hellickson to KC for Myers. Who says no?
Why don't teams use young starters in the bullpen to build experience? Is it because they don't want to start their clock toward FA? A team like the Rays have plenty of prospects, Archer, that could fill this role.
That was always Earl Weaver's philosophy but I think modern bullpen usage patterns, using relievers for one inning per outing but using them two or three days in a row, makes it impractical. Step one is destroying that bullpen paradigm, after which you can break in young starters in that long relief role.
Will Ryan Braun get any first place MVP votes?
I think so. I also think he's likely to be out of the top 5 on a few ballots.
If you just read the news that Toronto signed Mark Buerle (sp) for 3 / $48, what would be your opinion?
That it's pricey but they need the innings as much as any possible contender.
Since he's in the AzFL, thoughts on Heathcott? Are you as high on him as some others?
Love the tools. Needs to dial it all down a bit. You can't play with the knob turned to 11 all the time, unless you want to be the new Chris Snelling.
Re: Top Chef - isn't having an omelet challenge decide who makes the show one of the dumbest things ever? What are the odds some of those chefs haven't made an omelet in 10+ years??
It's considered an essential skill in classical French cooking - and it's pretty hard to do it right without a lot of practice. I don't disagree with you, but I think there's some merit to it.
#4 SP iN detroit fopr 2013, your choice- A) Sign Anibal Sanchez at six years, $90-100 million; B) Go with Smily and Porcello at #5; C) Overpay a bit for a one-year restoration project Shaun Marcum and have Smily at #5?
B, or C, but not A.
Keith, your early preference of the best draft eligible college arms?
I did a ranking earlier this fall - I had Appel over Stanek and Manaea, but they're very close.
Are there any free agent SP that missed your Top 50 list but could be good buy-low values? I'm thinking about guys like Feldman or Bedard.
Feldman absolutely. Bedard, no, unless you have a spot on your DL you need to fill.
What is your stance on immigration, being from Arizona?
I'm very strongly in favor of open immigration. I'm the grandson of an illegal immigrant, so if you want to call bias there, feel free.
Would you think less of me if I want Cabrera to win MVP based purely on homerism, as long as I acknowledge that it's not the rational choice?
I respect that greatly.
Have you ever made a turkey stock? I'm not wild about turkey as a main dish, but, on a lark, I made a stock once and a little shocked at how good it was. Much richer and "darker" in flavor than chicken stock.
Yep. Especially if you use the bones after you roasted the bird, so you've already browned them somewhat to make the darker stock.
Favorite college baseball stadium? Baum stadium in Fayetteville, AR is pretty awesome
LSU. Never been to Arkansas but I think that'll change this spring, since I must see Stanek.
Nobody really talks about Ike Davis. He obviously had a pretty bad year. He was hopeless against lefties. But he hit 32 HR in a tough park to hit HR in. Can he recover and be a .265/.365/525 type of hitter long term.
Lower OBP. Otherwise, yes.
Are home runs over rated?
Depends. If someone is arguing that a home run is worth four times as much as a single, or twice that of a double, then yeah, probably.
How often do you cook vegetarian?
3-4 nights a week. Made a giant panzanella last night. Tonight is quinoa fritters and a smaller salad.
HELP! I forgot to put a pork roast in the crock pot and my pregnant wife has a craving for it. How do I make it in less time?
Who was the prospect you were most surprised to see fail?
Smoak is one. Also been surprised at how bad Tim Beckham's been.
I was surprised Harper/Miley was so close due to the difference in hype, and Harper going crazy in September leading his team to the playoffs. Do you think some voters went against him for non-baseball reasons?
Yes, or they made up their minds in early September.
It seems like Max Kepler is starting to put his baseball skills together with his athleticism. Is he a guy that could move up quickly now?
Yes. I'm a big fan.
Are Joc Pederson and/or Kyle Seager real prospects?
You mean Corey Seager? He is. I think Pederson's an extra OF.
Any favorite recipes in Ruhlman's 20? Recommendations on first recipes to try?
The pork tenderloin and the braised duck legs.
So Smoak has failed? His September recovery, with the shorter swing, is just SSS?
Did this the prior September too. I don't want to give up hope, but he was pretty miserable all year ... and most of the year before too.
Have you seen Wreck it Ralph? I hope not for your sake of time...
I haven't. My wife and I both thought the trailer made it look a little too mean-spirited for our daughter, who is six.
Deep-fried turkey: Yes or no?
If you're trying to burn down your house for the insurance money, go ahead and deep-fry it.
Blackburn & Crick up in a few years to replace Zito and Volgy? Front-line or back-end starters? Ceilings?
2-3 years. Potential #2 starters.
What movies are you looking forward to seeing this next month?
Life of Pi, Les Mis, Argo (still haven't seen it, no time recently), Anna Karenina (because Grierson/Leitch loved it), the Hobbit, Django Unchained. I'm sure there are smaller films I haven't heard about yet but will want to see too.
What are you looking forward to about Winter Meetings?
Checking out of the Gaylord on that Thursday.
I'm assuming no chat for Thanksgiving so tell us your favorite Thanksgiving dish? And where do you stand on Turducken?
No chat next week. I'm actually taking the week off to go on vacation.
Does the Miami fire sale impact what the D-Backs would receive for Justin Upton, or are they completely independent situations?
I think they're independent, other than taking one potential bidder for Upton (Toronto) out of the mix.
How has Schoop looked in Arizona?
Hasn't it become necessary to overspend if you really want a top tier free agent? And what about trying new Nashville restaurants? You're not looking forward to that?
It's always been necessary - the winner's curse has long applied in baseball. I am, actually. Already have a reservation at the Catbird Seat.
Keith, would you disagree with the idea Clint Frazier is a lot better bet to hit than Austin Meadows? Beginning to think some people's preference of Meadows just has to do with him "looking the part" a little more.
Wouldn't disagree at all. Frazier has better bat speed. Meadows has better tools beyond the bat.
What did you think of the film Sugar? Accurate representation of how Latin American prospects are handled by the MLB?
Loved it. Highly recommended.
JPA+Davis for Olt. Who says no?
Texas. With swearing.
Klaw, honest question- does your wife ever make dinner? What are her specialties?
Not if I'm here. She claims I have taken over the kitchen. I have no dispute with that.
Is Darvish a top ten starter next year?
He was this year.
Keith, have you ever given thought to writing a work of fiction? Any thoughts on NaNoWriMo?
Yes, some day. I don't really get the point of NaNoWriMo.
Do you look down on people who went to community college or local four year schools because you went to an Ivy League school? Honest question, because a lot of people do.
No. Not everyone has the same educational opportunities that I had, and Ivy League schools (or other similar institutions) can be cost-prohibitive even with financial aid.
Have any reports on any of the four Japan players who became draft eligible?
The free agents? Fujikawa made my top 50. None of the others were good enough.
Seen Homeland this week? I'm not buying Carrie/Brody rd 2.
Yes, and agreed. Why is it that every time he turns around she's sticking her tongue down his throat? And why isn't he in treatment? You wouldn't just assume PTSD? To say nothing of the Dana storyline. Season 1 was better.
Thoughts on Guy Fieri?
Not a fan of his show or the kind of food he's promoting.
Mikey Wilbon stated on PTI that the Marlins have done this before and it worked out with two titles. Isn't that missing the big picture? What the owner is doing is bordering on criminal.
This deal isn't in the ballpark of the '98 dump in talent return - and you can only credit one of their titles to the dumping strategy, since '97 was built largely from their expansion draft and early scouting/development efforts. Plus this is the first time the owners did this in a publicly-financed boondoggle stadium.
Gordon Beckham also a surprising fail?
Yes, and no. I hated his swing when I first saw him - huge hitch, all the power he had on the Cape was a function of where he played, etc. But he always hit - I questioned whether I was overthinking the mechanics because he seemed to square up all kinds of pitching and had (has) great instincts. So I was wrong twice, in a way.
Just wanted to let you know I have been to Kushi.Owned and operated by same people who own Onsen in Oakdale.I f you are looking for atmospere, wrong place, but simply best sushi I have ever had created in ways you could only dream of. Service is amazing as well.A must go.
I'd love to but I have no peeps left on LI. My folks sold their house there in July and moved out of state. It's very weird to think of Long Island as some place I might not visit again for five or ten years.
What are you favorite political blogs?
I avoid them like the plague.
Maybe they got what they deserved...financed a stadium for a man with no scruples.
This is very true. No one who votes in favor of public stadium financing has a real right to complain when the owner walks away with the economic benefits and the city ends up screwed.
Now that weed is legal here, wanna smoke when you are in town?
I'm glad decriminalization is finally getting some traction, but the irony is I've never tried the stuff and can't even identify its scent. Every time someone smokes pot while I'm nearby, my reaction is always "something's burning."
Do you find yourself feeling any animosity, subconscious or not, towards Miggy? Honest?
No. Why would I? The debate isn't really about him, or Trout for that matter.
Keith, after reading your MVP article today, I feel like there will be more outrage that you have Cabrera third then the fact that you don't have him winning.
Probably. And those same people won't read the explanation.
OK, thanks for the questions. Enjoy Thanksgiving (for those of you in the U.S.). Please be safe, brine your turkey, cook the stuffing separately, and don't buy pumpkin pie filling in a can. I'll be back in two weeks, after my vacation.