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Morning Mound Visit: sabermetrics news - 12/12/19

Trout hypothetically in another lineup; MLB authors study on ball seam height; making the Angels a winner

MLB: Mike Trout Press Conference Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

FanGraphs | Ben Clemens: It’s cool to see Mike Trout hitting alongside Anthony Rendon, but what if we added Trout to other teams’ lineups? If you added him to the Astros, it’s the best lineup ever that multiplicatively gets even better. Added to the top of a lineup of your average NL team, they suddenly become an 87-win team.

Baseball Prospectus | Rob Arthur ($): MLB has issued another report on the baseball, and things don’t exactly get simpler. They attribute the home run increase to seam height (well known already) and the launch angle revolution, which as we’ve seen, is really only a small part of the story. It also doesn’t explain how seam height didn’t change in the postseason, but drag did. Nonetheless, ball-to-ball variations or batch-to-batch variations are the biggest problem the league faces moving forward.

The Ringer | Michael Baumann: Sure, the Angels have Rendon, but they actually need to win some meaningful games for it to be worthwhile. This was an acquisition they needed to make to even sniff the postseason, but they’ll need to swing a big trade (maybe for Corey Kluber) and/or sign another pitcher to further cement their contender status.