Friday, November 10, 2006


I know that the Dodgers had gone on the record as not getting involved in the posting process for Matsuzaka (in the Criminal Law class, we'd call this a "noisy withdrawal"). But perhaps Trader Neddie may have spoke too soon? As Kristina Kahrl noted earlier today in her article for BP:
"So, to start off with, thanks to the powers of Clay Davenport's translations, let's take a look at Matsuzaka's performance for the last four years, as well as the closest line to it in baseball (again using just the last four years):

IP NRA H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 PERA dH dR
736.1 3.37 7.5 0.6 2.5 7.4 3.41 -28 +2
765.0 3.11 7.1 0.6 2.5 7.6 3.30 -47 0

Some terminology to get out of the way: NRA is Normalized Runs Allowed, where the scale to compare a guy against is a world where an average pitcher allows 4.5 runs per nine innings. PERA is a pitcher's ERA based on his peripheral statistics-his hits, homers, walks allowed, that sort of thing, also set to where 4.50 is the baseline. The two at the end might be particularly foreign to you, but "dH" describes how many (in this case) fewer hits a pitcher allowed than you might expect, and "dR" is how many fewer runs."

So for those of you who didn't believe that math would be on today's test, let me summarize. The first line of numbers above shows Matsuzaka's rate stats for the past 4 years; the second line is the top comparable for that same period. Both lines are translated to the same scale so the comparisons are "apples to apples." Who's line is Player "B" you might ask? None other than Roger Clemens circa 2003-2006. May I also remind you that Matsuzaka is just 27?

Query whether it would it be worth staying in the bidding to get a Clemens-type starter who will be in his prime? Boras or no, I'd argue that it would have been.


Orel said...

Even after finding out the Red Sox may have bid $45 million?

Lasorda said...

Well, there apparently is a bit of retrading available in the posting process - teams can apparently post the bids (say $45MM), but then when the bid is accepted, the winning team gets to negotiate the bid down. Since the payment of the bid to the Japanese club is contingent on the MLB team signing the Japanese player, the Japanese club doesn't really have any leverage. So the Sox could bid $45MM, sign Matsuzaka for, say, $52MM for 4 years, but then pay the Lions $20MM. If you're a team like the Yankees or the Red Sox, you can absorb that kind of addition to the payroll (see, A-Rod or the Pavano and Wright signings). I'd argue that the Dodgers would be better off spending that kind of money on a younger stud like Matsuzaka, rather than spending the $9-10MM/yr. they would have to spend to keep Maddux. Remember that they're also clearing $11.5MM off the books for JD Drew.

Orel said...

So you can get a rebate on your original bid? Do you have to send in Matsuzaka's UPC symbol or something? This posting process seems a bit dodgy. Regardless, it's unlikely McCourt would even pony up "only" $20 million.