Fish Bites


It’s the middle of the week, and that means we should review Marlins news and other interesting links on Fish Bites.

– The Marlins have recently completed their coaching staff, filling in the open positions at first base, third base, and bullpen coaches inside the organization. They apparently wanted Perry Hill, who used to coach infield for the Marlins years ago, but the Pittsburgh Pirates did not allow us to discuss with him.

– Center fielder Cameron Maybin was apparently hampered by a sore shoulder, but he had surgery on it and apparently everything went well. Good to hear, because the Marlins are counting on him for Opening Day.

– The Marlins are giving pitcher Hayden Penn another opportunity on the 40-man roster. I don’t think he has much left in the tank, but maybe he’ll figure it out. My guess is that he’s a Quad-A player.

– Of the Marlins’ four free agents, two of them qualify for Type B status. First baseman Nick Johnson and reliever Kiko Calero both are ranked as Type B’s, which means if the Marlins offer them arbitration prior to December 1st, the team is entitled a “sandwich” second round pick as compensation, which I believe doesn’t actually hurt the signing team. In any case, Kiko would not be a bad choice for offering arbitration, as he likely would not make much from it if he does accept it. If he doesn’t, we get the pick, which is nice. Johnson, on the other hand, might very well accept arbitration versus trying to find a guaranteed, non-incentivized one-year deal. In the open market, he’d likely have to settle for some incentives, and maybe he takes arbitration instead, sticking us with a fairly hefty bill. It should be interesting to see what happens.

– SB Nation, a network for which I also write, is releasing their award choices at around this time. Craig over at FishStripes gives us the results for the NL Rookie of the Year. Tommy Hanson won, and he certainly was not a bad choice. What I wanted to point out was Craig and GameFish’s ballot. They voted our man Chris Coghlan first, above Hanson and J.A. Happ. The reasoning stated is as follows:

"My reason for Coghlan being first is that when evaluating a rookie the latter half of the season should be weighed more heavily than the first half. When a player breaks into the league normally one of two things happen, either they start off well and then the league learns them and the impressive start fizzles. Or they start out slowly until they figure out the league and then come on blazing. A strong finish, I feel, is more representative of who was the better rookie. Now both of the NL East pitchers were pretty steady throughout but an every day player should get the benefit of the doubt when making the comparison."

The first half/second-half thing is fine, but it should be noted that my pick, Andrew McCutchen, had a pretty strong second half as well. In addition, it really seems like this argument is used to simply eliminate the first half’s production, though I don’t claim that to be what Craig and GameFish are doing. Also, I think the “pitchers don’t play enough” argument is not very good. Hanson faced 522 batters this season, about 40 less PA than Coghlan had.

Of course, Coghlan and McCutchen played the field as well, but it’s clear from Craig’s explanation that not much consideration was given to how poorly Coghlan played in the outfield. This is why stats need to be turned into runs in order to be considered, otherwise every discussion point is subjective.

– Finally, yesterday the American League Gold Glove awards came out, and people were not happy. Rob Neyer had a scathing look at the award, though it seemed like he missed on a few of those choice words. He bashes Placido Polanco, for example, because he feels the voters put him in for his lack of errors this season, but he actually led the American League in UZR for qualified second basemen. Tom Tango over at the Book blog had a poll about the Gold Glove, the results of which were reported in this (hilarious) press release. Tango also checked the Fans vote to see how the GG awards matched up, determining that they did OK, aside from leaving out Franklin Gutierrez and voting Derek Jeter for another bad award.

– Not to be outdone, I did my own look at the award over at Beyond the Box Score. I projected and regressed three years worth of data for a more “true talent” measure and found that the infield was mostly good, outside of the Jeter vote, and that Gutierrez was ridiculous. Also, we should stop voting for Torii Hunter.