Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Neyer Chat Wrap: Schmidt and Kemp=Good, Zito=Enigmatic

Rob Neyer's chat over at ESPN.com today offered up praise for Dodgers Jason Schmidt and Matt Kemp:

Craig (PA): Schmidt in Dodger Stadium isn't one of your [Cy Young] candidates?

Rob Neyer: Sure. He's another one. But I'm not sure what Dodger Stadium has to do with it, as PacBell's the better pitcher's park.

Silv (NY, NY): PECOTA loves Matt Kemp. I love Matt Kemp. Why doesn't Ned love Matt Kemp or, more accurately, why does he love Luis Gonzalez and wasting millions of dollars more?

Rob Neyer: Colletti seems to have adopted the guiding philosophy of Brian Sabean (his old boss): "Never go young when you can go old." Matt Kemp's going to be a star, and if the Dodgers miss the pennant because Gonzalez got 200 of the ups that should have gone to Kemp, Colletti should be held accountable.

Ian (DC): Can someone tell Silv from NY that PECOTA isn't a living being and therefore cannot "love" something? People are taking projections and stats a little too seriously these days...

Rob Neyer: I'm guilty of the same phraseology, especially when engaged in my fantasy draft. What's striking about the projections is how wildly they're different for some players. And there's no one system that's *particularly* trustworthy, as they all average out to roughly the same.

Moneyball fans just fell out of their chairs.

Getting back to the chat, Neyer was strange when it came to commenting on that pitcher for which the Giants paid almost three times the amount as the Dodgers did for Schmidt:

Mike (Denver, CO): Don't you think Zito will fourish at Pac Bell?

Rob Neyer: I think fourish is just about right, though we shouldn't be surprised by a 3.5ish.

If Neyer is taking advantage of a typo to refer to Zito's ERA, 3.55 is indeed Zito's career average, so it is reasonable that he will attain this level in the pitcher-friendly BigPhone Park. However, it should be noted that his ERA over the last three seasons was 4.48, 3.86, and 3.83. Keep tinkering with that delivery, Barry Z!

Oh yeah, for those of you scoring at home, that's 36 questions total, 3.5 questions (I'm only taking partial credit for Ian from DC's question) regarding the NL West. The NL West has 17% of MLB's teams, yet garners <10% of the coverage. We'll see if Keith Law this afternoon remembers the left coast any more than Neyer did.