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Morning Mound Visit: sabermetrics news - 8/31/18

Cubs payroll set to increase; the Mendoza Line; factors in deciding the Cy Young; Matt Carpenter’s ascendance

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MLB: Washington Nationals at Philadelphia Phillies Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

FanGraphs | Craig Edwards: The Cubs have a lot of impending salary increases on the horizon, and their payroll is already right up there with the highest, so how will they keep up? Owning their own regional sports network, of course. After opting out of the NBC Sports Chicago deal and venturing on their own, they could generate enough TV revenue to keep their high payroll afloat for years to come.

Baseball Prospectus | Rob Mains ($): The Mendoza Line has always been a present term in baseball, but it’s starting to lose its effectiveness as an evaluative tool as batting average is de-emphasized. 2018 could set a record for the most sub-.200 hitters, and for obvious reason: more power.

The Athletic | Eno Sarris ($): By rWAR, Aaron Nola currently leads the NL Cy Young race. By fWAR and WPA, Jacob deGrom comfortably leads. By expected ERA, deGrom and Max Scherzer are about even. By DRA, it’s Scherzer. Unless one pitcher differentiates themselves in the next month, it could be a total toss-up.

The Ringer | Michael Baumann: The key with corner infielders is that so much rests on their offensive numbers to offset defense, so it’s funny that when Matt Carpenter played in the middle infield, he hit like one, and when he moved to first base, he started hitting like one. After trading contact for power is one of the best power hitters, and best overall hitters, in the league.