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Brian Lahair, real deal?


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39 replies to this topic

#16 JCubs79

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 01:12 PM

I really think LaHair even with how well he is playing is still a placeholder for Rizzo. I mean he is 29 and really doesn't fit the young core that Epstein is trying to build. It might be smart to trade him to a team desperate for a LH bat come July. I like LaHair a lot though FTR.

#17 DocPeterWimsey

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 03:42 PM

Well, one thread that I hope Theo holds in his mind is the possible effects of the new scheduling on the need for a DH. The new schedule is going to result in the need for a DH off and on throughout the year, and LaHair would make a good one. I'm wondering whether this will be the final straw that breaks the NL's back and makes the DH universal. If so, then LaHair actually could be part of the rebuilding process.

The problem is that not simply that I do not know how probable this is: I suspect that Theo & Jed don't either!
Gods don't play dice with the universe, they are the dice of the universe: our job is to figure out how many sides and dice!

#18 Brett

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 04:13 PM

Well, one thread that I hope Theo holds in his mind is the possible effects of the new scheduling on the need for a DH. The new schedule is going to result in the need for a DH off and on throughout the year, and LaHair would make a good one. I'm wondering whether this will be the final straw that breaks the NL's back and makes the DH universal. If so, then LaHair actually could be part of the rebuilding process.

The problem is that not simply that I do not know how probable this is: I suspect that Theo & Jed don't either!

Eh, it's still only about 16 games a year (IIRC, 32 interleague games, which would mean 16 games requiring a DH). Not meaningless, but maybe not a huge deal.

#19 Brett

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 04:15 PM

That raises an interesting point, though: if the Cubs were allowed a DH, wouldn't we right now be thinking, "holy shit, the Cubs may have lucked into one of the best DHs (considering not only ability but contract) in all of baseball!"

If that's true, might LaHair be far more valuable on the trade market than we think? Especially if Theo and Jed "sell high"?

#20 fromthemitten

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 07:31 PM

If Hendry were still GM LaHair would be well on his way to signing a $100 million+ contract by June.

Way too early to judge. Yeah his BABIP or whatever is astronomical and unworldly but I'm digging his plate discipline that has been lacking in the Cubs organization for as long as I can remember.

I wouldn't mind them selling high on him at the trade deadline if Rizzo's ready to go (I've heard rumors of him being able to play corner outfield spots so we could see him there with Dejesus shifting to center.

The whole "he's old" thing is really silly since he didn't really get a shot with Seattle other than a cup of coffee and D Lee kept him down there with the Cubs. Ryan Howard didn't become an every day player until he was 26 due to being stuck behind Jim Thome.

#21 A_Mazz_Ing

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 09:19 PM

It also depends on what you mean by "real deal." Baseball performance is complex, after all, and two different types of performance might have nothing to do with each other. The traits that I think are real are:

  • The slugging;
  • The batting eye;
  • The K's (although I expect that the frequency is a little higher than it will be!)
The ones that are, so far, "lucky" are:
  • The ridiculous BABiP;
  • The apparent "clutch";
  • Just how high the K-rate is (I expect it to be "only" around 25%);
  • His back letting him play.
So, I have to think both "so far, so good" and "so far, so lucky."


^This. I think he'll be good, but the only problem is there will be no position for him in a few months...

#22 FFP

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 01:31 PM

http://www.fangraphs...462&position=1B
(click on "Projections" to get more projections)

Peaking (meant "peeking"...hello, Sigmund) at LaHair's numbers at fangraphs, he really seems to be outperforming projections right now in slugging. Sugging may be "Real" (especially in past box scores!), but Is SLG one of the numbers more subject to variability in smaller sample sizes? Is it one more likely to "regress toward a mean"?

(.471 OBP ! and) .780 Slugging in this year's SSS of 70 at bats (His highest SLG projections are closer to .500). This sample isn't meaningless. It just can't mean much by itself.

I think the three ZiPS are: before start of the season, Updated and Rest-of-Season; I guess the "R" must calculate in some sort of regression because it is closer to the mere mortal range; but both ZiPS-U and ZiPS-R seem to reflect his plate awesomeness (the other PA) so far this year.

But, look back at his minor league slugging numbers (PCL, I know...but, look). Maybe this is the player he is.

I'm also still chewing on this year's K rate...I mean he can't hit more homeruns AND get more walks AND get struckout more? Can he? What the hell does that mean? His back is allergic to singles and POs? He is going to drift back to a 25% K rate, right? (Edit: Doc started addressing K's further up this thread. Wasn't ignoring you, Doc, just got wrapped up trying to understand some stats that are new to me)

Edited by FromFenwayPahk, 04 May 2012 - 08:52 PM.


#23 A_Mazz_Ing

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 02:11 PM

High K rate or not, he gives quality ABs and sees a ton of pitches. IMHO, K rate is overrated in most circumstances. It's an out. Yes, it doesn't move the runner up or get a guy in on a sac fly. I would like to see his K rate in "clutch" situations and RBI situations. I bet you see a good decrease.

#24 FFP

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Posted 03 May 2012 - 05:24 AM

I think his K rate IS connected to his quality at bats, mazz. Hadn't thought that through. I remember at least two of his homers came in very deep counts and long ABs. Good observation.

#25 Cerambam

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 02:43 PM

Well this is silly now isn't it?

#26 TWC

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 03:03 PM

And to everybody else, let's keep cheering for LaHair! I put a $30 bet (4 to 1) that he finished the season with better numbers that Albert Pujols.


I wonder what Caleb's buddy did with that $30 that he had to pay him -- by July 1st...

#27 Tommy

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 03:37 PM

I staked my street cred to him a long time ago, and now I get to bask in self-congratulation with his every achievement. My friends that aren't baseball fans (oxymoron?) hear me cheer for Lahair and usually ask, "Isn't he that one old guy that you and Kyle always said was good but people thought you were idiots?"


Words do not suffice.
- diehard fanclub member #002

#28 TWC

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 03:40 PM

Yeah, it's no wonder that Caleb mostly disappeared from BN last summer...

#29 FFP

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Posted 16 February 2013 - 10:35 AM

What's silly is we are all about to get silly again, just about a different bunch of kids. I'm looking forward to it.
And did you see the pictures at Boys of Spring? Those kids all look so young, even the veterans.

#30 Caleb

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 12:34 PM

Lolz-- just reread all this stuff.

 

I'm still going to write my check, but I'm also going to keep an eye on how he does for the Hawks this year!  I bet it's awesome going to Japan and crushing home runs and stuff. 

 

Given that my LaHair support has now been crushed by history, I need a new love.  Schierholtz the real deal?  Castillo headed for stud-dom?  Wait---I can rest on my unwavering (from his first relief appearances) of the Shark! I called him first.  Take that.






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