Breaking: Cubs acquire Cole Hamels

This was on Twitter so it must be true.  :-)   Supposedly Cubs get Cole Hamels for some salary relief (i.e. money) and some prospects.   Since minor leagues haven’t been compiled we can’t comment on prospects either.   First let’s recap Cubs’ tier data.

CHN Tier Data

Type Tier Name_Teamid WAA
Lineups 3 CHN 7.56
SP 4 Tyler_Chatwood_CHN -1.51
SP 3 Kyle_Hendricks_CHN 0.17
SP 1 Jon_Lester_CHN 2.60
SP 3 Jose_Quintana_CHN 0.59
SP 3 Mike_Montgomery_CHN 0.71
RP 2 CHN 5.88

Lineup is around Tier 2/3 border which is good, and relief (RP)  has slipped into Tier 2 category, above average but worrisome should they enter the playoffs with only one reliable starter with Lester.  There is not much they can do with that rotation.  Acquiring a Tier 1 starter like deGrom would be very expensive and would only plug one spot.  Teams can get by with 4 starters in the playoffs.

What to do?   By doing nothing they would need 3/5 (60%) of the above pitchers (including Darvish) who aren’t Lester to pick it up.  With a trade they just need 3/6 (50%) of non Lesters to become playoff caliber.     The key to winning at games of risk is to tilt the odds in your favor.   The risk models that Theo and Jed are using involves business math way above my pay grade so won’t even begin to comment even if I did know the details.  Everything in baseball is a gamble however.  Let’s look at  the pitcher Theo and Jed placed their chips on.

Cole Hamels Career

Year WAA Name_TeamID Pos Rank
2006 1.2 Cole_Hamels_PHI PITCH XXXXX
2007 4.5 Cole_Hamels_PHI PITCH +047+
2008 6.5 Cole_Hamels_PHI PITCH +017+
2009 -0.2 Cole_Hamels_PHI PITCH XXXXX
2010 4.8 Cole_Hamels_PHI PITCH +042+
2011 5.4 Cole_Hamels_PHI PITCH +030+
2012 4.7 Cole_Hamels_PHI PITCH +034+
2013 1.6 Cole_Hamels_PHI PITCH XXXXX
2014 5.9 Cole_Hamels_PHI PITCH +015+
2015 1.1 Cole_Hamels_PHI PITCH XXXXX
2015 0.6 Cole_Hamels_TEX PITCH XXXXX
2016 4.1 Cole_Hamels_TEX PITCH +059+
2017 0.6 Cole_Hamels_TEX PITCH XXXXX
2018 -1.6 Cole_Hamels_TEX PITCH -113-
Total 39.2

That’s close to HOF territory.  Bold blue are top 100 years.  He’s not having a good season so far this year but his upside potential is enormous based upon the above data.  Can he still pitch?  Is he too old?   Here is something interesting about this season.

Cole Hamels 2018 Season

Date WAA Name_TeamID Pos
2018-06-02 0.25 Cole_Hamels_TEX PITCH
2018-06-10 0.08 Cole_Hamels_TEX PITCH
2018-06-18 0.55 Cole_Hamels_TEX PITCH
2018-06-25 1.30 Cole_Hamels_TEX PITCH
2018-07-02 -0.02 Cole_Hamels_TEX PITCH
2018-07-09 -0.50 Cole_Hamels_TEX PITCH
2018-07-16 -0.57 Cole_Hamels_TEX PITCH
2018-07-26 -1.57 Cole_Hamels_TEX PITCH

This table shows the WAA trend for Hamels this season.   This probably would be better as a graph.  It basically shows Hamels was well above average a month ago and suddenly tanked for some reason.  His negative number this year was incurred in the last month.

This data model cannot predict the future neither can Sabermetric statheads.   The guys who can recognize talent, the old farts who the movie “Moneyball” made fun of, have a better understanding of this success probability than anyone.

That’s all for now.  Apparently the Cubs play the Cardinals again tomorrow so another matchup post with handicapping.  Cubs status sometime in the future as well as a series on minor league ranking according to this data model.  Until then ….