Dave Schoenfield of ESPN SweetSpot discusses the possibility that the Royals could be contenders in 2013: How the Royals can be contenders - SweetSpot Blog - ESPN
If the Orioles and A's can make such dramatic gains in one season, why not the Kansas City Royals and Seattle Mariners, two other downtrodden AL franchises? The Royals have suffered nine consecutive losing seasons and have just one winning season during the wild-card era. The Mariners have had two winning seasons in the past nine and haven't outscored their opponents in a season since 2003. But with the right moves, either team -- or both -- could end up the 2013 version of the Orioles or A's.
Scott Spratt of the Hardball Times compares the various "fire sales" of the Red Sox and Marlins, as well as compares the issue of contention for each franchise: The Marlins, the Red Sox, and goodwill--THT
I do not want to dismiss the value of a middle-of-the-road team with some star power because, for most fans, it would have been a much better on-field product than the team of prospects and fill-ins the Marlins will start in 2013. That said, if Miami were to exhaust the remaining value of the contracts of the players they traded away on teams with little chances of a postseason berth, then the fire sale that netted them financial flexibility and prospects was a better choice for the franchise’s title hopes in the long run.
Sam Miller of Baseball Prospectus looks at scenarios for the Marlins possibly trading Giancarlo Stanton: Baseball Prospectus | Pebble Hunting: Trading Giancarlo Stanton
It would be easy to say this about the Marlins: they could trade Giancarlo Stanton for a bunch of prospects. They could do it, and it’s not really worth putting together an imaginary package of such prospects here; presumably, they would want great prospects, and that’s the sort of prospects they would get. That would accomplish something, and it’s acknowledged. But get past the Stanton-for-prospects construction and let’s think about what else the Marlins might hope to accomplish by trading their best player before he costs anything.
Also at BP, Russell A. Carlton responds to some critics of baseball's statistical movement: Baseball Prospectus | BP Unfiltered: Why Mike Trout Matters
For one, a lot of the people "who come up with this stuff" work in MLB front offices now. There's a laundry list of people who started out writing on the internet who have sometimes publicly, sometimes quietly, been hired by teams to work for them. And they get input into actual decisions. And paychecks.
In 2010, Weaver finished second in the AL in swings and misses, was in the top five in getting batters to chase pitches outside of the zone, and had the lowest in-zone contact rate in the majors. Now he’s tied for 47th in getting batters to chase, 45th in-in zone contact, and tied for 46th in getting batters to whiff.
Also, Jay Jaffe's JAWS Score for evaluating Hall of Fame candidacy can now be found at Baseball-Reference: Jaffe WAR Score system (JAWS) for HOF Evaluations – Baseball-Reference.com » Sports Reference » Blog Archive