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Morning Mound Visit: sabermetrics news - 2/7/20

James Paxton’s spinal surgery; blocked players that PECOTA likes; five bounce-back pitchers

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MLB: ALCS-Houston Astros at New York Yankees Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

FanGraphs | Jay Jaffe: Due to a herniated lumbar disc, James Paxton will be out of the Yankees rotation for 3-4 months. Despite signing Gerrit Cole it’s still a huge blow as he was an anchor for the rotation in 2019 when Luis Severino was injured. This could force the Yankees into the position of not trading JA Happ, or trying to get something out of prospects like Michael King or Deivi Garcia earlier than expected.

Baseball Prospectus | Lucas Apostoleris ($): PECOTA has a few favorites this year that unfortunately blocked by playing time concerns, but that still tells us a story. One is the Yankees’ Mike Ford, who hit to a 125 DRC+ in 2019, and another is Aristides Aquino, who hit 14 home runs in August but is seemingly blocked by a glut of Reds outfielders.

The Athletic | Eno Sarris ($): Based on total 2019 WAR vs. projected 2020 WAR, there are a few obvious bounce-back pitching candidates. One obvious one is Severino, who was injured but could seemingly get back on track this year. Another is Corey Kluber who is also coming back from injury, but his command very well may be diminished from his peak.