Thursday, December 3, 2015

Why Kenta Maeda could get paid this year

It's been reported that Japanese star pitcher Kenta Maeda could hit the market this off season, which could shake things up a bit in the market for pitchers.  What makes him so valuable is the fact that he won the award for best pitcher in the NPB two years in a row and in last year's outing against the MLB stars he gave up no runs and two hits in five innings.
He also helped lead Japan to a third place finish in this year's WBSC Premier 12.  Against Mexico Maeda pitched five innings.  He gave up 2 ER, and five hits while striking out 7 and walking 1.  His FO to GO ratio was 3/5.  Against Puerto Rico Maeda pitched 7 innings.  He gave up 4 hits and no runs while striking out 7 batters.  He also had no walks.  His fly out to ground out ratio was a bit higher at 6/7.
Maeda also has success in the World Baseball Classic.
Against China in the WBC Maeda pitched five innings, gave up no runs, gave up 1 hit, walked 1 batter, and had 6 strike outs.  His fly out to ground out ratio in this game was 2/6.  Against The Nederlands Maeda pitched five innings.  He gave up no runs, had 9 strike outs, no walks, and gave up only one hit.  His fly out to ground out ratio was 2/3.  Against Puerto Rico Maeda pitched five innings.  He gave up 4 hits, gave up one earned run, had 2 walks, and 3 strike outs.  His fly out to ground out ratio in this game was 2/3.
As you see he's one of Japan's best pitchers and what makes him so valuable is the fact that he's barely hitting his prime.  He's only 27 and he's got so much potential to perform at an ace type level.  He's a strike out pitcher and he doesn't give up a lot of runs.
Kenta has used the WBC and the Premier 12 to help show case his talent along with the game against the MLB Stars.  He's been turned down request to be posted to the MLB, but according to reports his request to be posted to the MLB may be granted.
Considering he's so young the posting fee may be at a high $20 million

Market for Johnny Cueto

It was reported yesterday that Johnny Cueto turned down an offer worth $120 million by the Diamondbacks.  If you looked at his numbers after being traded to the Royals you'll see that maybe he isn't worth big time money, but if you look at his numbers you'll think otherwise.  Unless you're Clayton Kershaw you don't have an ERA lower than Johnny Cueto, and to add a resume he's also an inning eater and he throws a lot of strike outs.  Also, if you look at run prevention he's up there with the best considering he's in the top five in run prevention.  Maybe Arizona ups their ante or a team like the Cardinals would be in the mix.  It's scary to think that ST Louis would need someone to help them continue to win, but their rotation has a lot of holes and a pitcher like Cueto would fill that need.  Once Greinke comes off the market the other 2 pitchers left on my top four would be Samarzija and Cueto, so teams would go after them hard.  Other good teams that needs pitching would be the Giants, I feel like the Blue Jays could use depth in their rotation, and the Yankees could use starting rotation depth.

How much Zach Greinke could get

David Price just got paid $217 million for 7 years at the Boston Red Sox.
In the last 2 seasons David Price has an ERA+ of 134 which is tenth among starting pitchers, he has an FIP of 2.78 which is 7th among starting pitchers, and a WAR of 10.6 which is 9th among starting pitchers.
If you look into the average fast ball speed in the last four years his velocity hasn't been where it was in 2012.  2012 Price's average fast ball was at 95.5 MPH, in 2013 Price's average fastball was 93.5 MPH, in 2014 Price's average fast ball was at 93.2 MPH, and in 2015 Price's average fastball was at 94.2 MPH.
In 2012 Price's K% was 24.5%, in 2013 the K% for Price was 20.4%, in 2014 the K% was 26.9%, in 2015 the K% was 25.3%.  In 2012 Price's walk percentage was 7.1%, in 2013 Price's walk percentage was 3.7%, in 2014 Price's walk percentage was 3.8%, in 2015 Price's walk percentage was 5.3%.  In 2012 Price's swinging strike percentage was 8.4%, in 2013 his swinging strike percentage was 8.0%, in 2014 his swinging strike percentage was 10.6%, and in 2015 his swinging strike percentage was at a career high 11.9%.
Now, let's look at Price in the post season.
David Price's post season career looks like this:
63.1 innings, 5.12 ERA
2015 season:
23.1 innings pitched, 6.17 ERA, 23 K, 3BB
Okay, that was all of David Price.  Let's take a look at other pitchers
Go back to 2011.  The best pitchers that year based on WAR was Roy Halladay, Justin Verlander, Cliff Lee, CC Sabathia, and Jared Weaver.  All five of these guys have fallen off a cliff.
Halladay's WAR was 8.9, Lee's WAR was 8.6, Verlander's WAR was 8.4, Sabathia's WAR was 7.5, Weaver's WAR was 7.0.
Halladay's following 2 years of WAR
2012 0.9
2013 -0.9
Lee's WAR in 2014 was an alarming 0.8 and Lee did not pitch in 2015.
Verlander's WAR in 2014 was just 1.1.
Weaver's WAR in 2015 was just 0.3.
With all that said there's been reports of Jeff Samardzija has received a $100 million offer and Johnny Cueto just turned down a contract that was worth $120 million.  Also, keep in mind that Jordan Zimmerman just signed a contract that was worth more than $100 million.  So, the question remains how much could Greinke get?  If history repeats itself then Greinke shouldn't get a lengthy contract, but, Greinke should get paid still.  I'd have to go 6 years at $210.  That's more money than Price per year which would be a great value for Greinke.  You wouldn't have to hit that age 40 season and you would still get a great amount of value.