Cubs Status 8/30/2018

We’re now at the end of month 5 with only 1/6 of a baseball season left.  Let’s look at the team the Cubs are taking into the home stretch of the season.

CHN Team Status

58.6 39.7 565 460 66 47 5.0 1.7 CHN 8/8/2018
38.7 44.9 586 494 71 50 7.0 1.3 CHN 8/18/2018
43.5 57.7 638 527 78 54 8.8 1.0 CHN 8/30/2018

The above shows team status lines for today and the last two times we did this.  BAT up a little these last 12 days and PITCH up much more.  UR also up again which is a very good sign.  In general and especially in the playoffs,  loose mitts allow more hits … or something like that.

Cubs went 7-4 gaining 3 more wins putting them at +24 for the season.  Hitting and pitching very balanced.  Nothing to complain about.

Top Cubs

Rank WAA Name_TeamID Pos
+008+ 6.55 Javier_Baez_CHN 2B-SS-3B
+049+ 3.36 Steve_Cishek_CHN PITCH
+186+ 3.13 Cole_Hamels_CHN PITCH
+086+ 2.48 Anthony_Rizzo_CHN 1B
+136+ 2.06 Pedro_Strop_CHN PITCH
+144+ 1.93 Carl_Edwards_Jr._CHN PITCH
+148+ 1.91 Brandon_Morrow_CHN PITCH
+168+ 1.72 Jason_Heyward_CHN RF-CF
+170+ 1.72 Ben_Zobrist_CHN 2B-LF-RF
+182+ 1.64 Jon_Lester_CHN PITCH
+105+ 1.49 Jesse_Chavez_CHN PITCH
XXXXX 1.18 Mike_Montgomery_CHN PITCH

Lots and lots of guys in the 200 and three, almost four in top 100.  This is a very good sign.  Rizzo back in the top 100 again.

Baez still in top ten at #8 and  leads in NL MVP according to this data model.  The above list sorts on CHN records only so Hamels rank at #186 includes his TEX time.  His performance with the Cubs has been phenomenal.  To put this into perspective we can calculate a WinPct rate using the following formula.

Win% = 0.5 + 0.5 * WAA / Games

Not too complicated.  Hamels pitched 39 innings with the Cubs so his number of games is 39/9 = 4.33.  Plugging that into the above we get:

Cole Hamels CHN Win% = 0.5 + 3.13 * 0.5 / 4.33 = 0.861

To put the above in perspective, the current leader in WinPct based upon the wins and loss stat for pitchers is Aaron Nola who has a 15-3 record which equals a 0.833 win percentage.  If this were Fangraphs people would be stating Cole Hamels is currently the best pitcher in baseball.  False!  Rates should never be used for ranking.

This exercise was to provide context to Hamels’ WAA representing his short time with the Cubs.  You can’t shoot 3 under par for 6 holes in golf and claim you should shoot 9 under for 18.  It’s rare for a pitcher to maintain a rate this high but it could happen.  It doesn’t mean it will happen or should happen.

The #1 player and #1 pitcher according to this data model is Jacob deGrom who has a WAA=10.44 over 182.0 innings pitched giving him a WinPct of 0.715.  He pitched at this rate for an entire season — that’s why he’s #1.

Jesse Chavez came to the Cubs with positive value and he’s ranked #105 near the bottom of the above list.  His WinPct rate would be around 0.800  If you only look at his Cubs WAA.   That is also extremely good.  His rate for the entire season is 0.633 across two teams — which is still very good.  It’s his WAA value number that makes him ranked #105 of all MLB players, both batters and pitchers.

Since Baez is in the hunt for NL MVP, let’s take a look at the last Cub to win NL MVP and what their value was on this day back then.

Rank WAA Name_TeamID Pos
+004+ 7.14 Kris_Bryant_CHN 3B-LF-RF 8/30/2016
+007+ 7.01 Kris_Bryant_CHN 3B-LF-RF End of 2016

Bryant was ranked #4 by this data model and had a higher WAA than Baez right now.  WAA values can be compared directly for any year in the same class of baseball.  He has a slightly below average September 2016 and finishes ranked #7.  Value can go up, down, or sideways.

CHN Tier Data

Type Tier Name_Teamid WAA
Lineups 3 CHN 5.46
SP 3 Cole_Hamels_CHN 1.64
SP 3 Kyle_Hendricks_CHN 1.03
SP 3 Jon_Lester_CHN 1.64
SP 3 Alec_Mills_CHN 0.17
SP 3 Jose_Quintana_CHN -0.63
RP 1 CHN 11.38

The lineup listed in the Tier Data is from yesterday which was weak.  The lineup against NYN two days ago had a combined WAA=+13.50.  Maddon chose to rest people yesterday.  The Tier 1 boundary is +12.46 so CHN usually fields a Tier 1 lineup.  All starters are currently Tier 3 average but they have capability of pitching well in the playoffs.  Alec Mills is a new guy from the minors.  Here’s his data from our minors compilations.

Rank WAA Name_TeamID Pos WinPct
-088- -2.06 Alec_Mills_CHN PITCH 0.422 aa 2018
XXXXX -1.34 Alec_Mills_CHN PITCH 0.452 aaa 2018
XXXXX 0.42 Alec_Mills_CHN PITCH 0.635 aaa 2017

They’re trying him out for a reason.  His first almost 13 innings pitched in MLB have been slightly above average although he faced some of the worst hitting teams.   Not sure what Cubs management have planned for him.  September call ups coming soon so all kind of new guys will be on the roster.

CHN Relief

Rank WAA Name_TeamID Pos
+049+ 3.36 Steve_Cishek_CHN PITCH
+105+ 2.33 Jesse_Chavez_TOT PITCH
+136+ 2.06 Pedro_Strop_CHN PITCH
+144+ 1.93 Carl_Edwards_Jr._CHN PITCH
XXXXX 1.18 Justin_Wilson_CHN PITCH
XXXXX 0.82 Randy_Rosario_CHN PITCH
XXXXX 0.21 Jorge_De_La_Rosa_TOT PITCH
XXXXX -0.44 Brandon_Kintzler_TOT PITCH
Total 11.45

Four relievers in top 200.  Carl Edwards Jr. has been  clawing his way back.  The Tier 1/2 border for relief is now at +8.57 so the Cubs are well above that now.

That is all for now.  Cubs Phillies comes up next.   Until then ….