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Morning Mound Visit: sabermetrics news - 1/18/20

A trio of bat-first outfielder free agents; the Astros’ heel turn; more players needed like Mike Fiers

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MLB: Oakland Athletics at Texas Rangers Andrew Dieb-USA TODAY Sports

FanGraphs | Tony Wolfe: Marcell Ozuna, Yasiel Puig, and Nick Castellanos have two things in common: they are all still unsigned, and they all suffer from pretty poor defensive metrics. That’s bad news because now they’re only bargaining against themselves and a smaller pool of teams who need more of a bat, and they all basically share that same flaw.

Baseball Prospectus | Matt Sussman ($): There would really be no more of a karmic reverse than if the Astros won the World Series, which is non-trivially possible given how good they still are. Every at-bat is going to be scrutinized and the story line would be impossible to keep your eyes away from, but for now, we are still living in the scandal as it unfolds.

The Athletic | Marc Carig ($): Despite comments made by Jessica Mendoza to the controversy, we need more people like Mike Fiers to stand up for what’s right. Baseball is going through a serious legitimacy crisis, and the only thing that stops the bleeding is abandoning the mythical clubhouse code for basic ethics and honesty.