Just how much of a hole have the Giants dug themselves?

After getting blown out in back-to-back games in Cincinnati, the Giants currently set — before today’s game — at a record of 11-20. That’s a .355 winning percentage and it’s the worst in the National League. (The Giants can’t claim the worst winning percentage in baseball because both the Blue Jays and Royals have been worse.) The Giants have been terrible in their own special and frustrating way: at -59 runs they have the worst run differential in baseball.

The pitching has been “adequate” in the way that you could use a trash bag to fashion yourself a pair of pants and that would also be “adequate.” Sure, you would look insane but it would cover your legs and provide some kind of protection. Measuring the starting pitching and bullpen by retrodictors like FIP and xFIP results in the same conclusion: the Giants are around 15th in baseball in terms of pitching talent; that’s middle of the pack and even if it’s an underperformance, it hasn’t been the Achilles heal for this team.

That honor goes to the hitting. The Giants rank in the following offensive categories in all of baseball: (29th) team wRC+, (30th) isolated power, and (24th) walk-rate. This might be the worst outfield configuration that the team has used in recent history. Collectively, Giants’ outfielders have slashed .206/.287/.306. Going by weighted runs created (wRC+) the Giants have the worst outfield in baseball (64 wRC+). From the looks of it, the outfield got old in a hurry. Denard Span no longer looks like a starting major leaguer (he’s also old and hurt), Hunter Pence is 34-years-old and off to a slow start, and the Giants have tried to patch the outfield with a rotating cast of minor leaguers and warm bodies they have happened to come across. The team is so desperate to fill the outfield that it has resorted to shifting Brandon Belt to left field on most days. Brandon Belt is a first baseman in case you were wondering.

The Giants have seen 11 separate players log at least one inning in the outfield so far this season.

Name Age G GS CG Inn?
Hunter Pence 34 28 28 25 245.2
Gorkys Hernandez 29 23 16 9 158.2
Denard Span (10-day dl) 33 13 12 11 101.2
Chris Marrero 28 12 9 4 73.0
Drew Stubbs 32 10 6 5 64.0
Jarrett Parker 28 9 8 3 59.2
Brandon Belt 29 8 7 1 50.0
Eduardo Nunez 30 6 4 1 44.0
Aaron Hill (10-day dl) 35 6 2 2 22.1
Justin Ruggiano 35 1 1 1 8.0
Kelby Tomlinson 27 2 3.0

When Gorkys Hernandez has played the second most in the outfield for your team, well, that might not be such a good thing for the ol’ playoff odds.

So, the Giants are kind of a tire fire right now. But, just how well does this team have to play over the remainder of the season to have any kind of playoff hopes?

A data table below for your sad perusal.

Winning % rW rL tW tL
0.300 39 92 50 112
0.350 46 85 57 105
0.400 52 79 63 99
0.450 59 72 70 92
0.500 66 66 77 86
0.550 72 59 83 79
0.575 75 56 86 76
0.600 79 52 90 72

(rW = remainder wins; rL = remainder losses; tW = total wins; tL = total losses)

FanGraphs and their fancy projected standings have the Giants at a .506 wining percentage over the remainder of the season. That works out to a final win-loss record of 77-85 — that would be the worst finish for a Giants team since 2013 when the team finished with a record of 76-86. The next worse finish after 2013 and you start wading into the muck that is/was the 2008 season. As currently projected, a 77 win season would place the Giants last in the NL West, which is something the team hasn’t done since 2007.

The Giants would have to play at a .575-600 winning percentage over the remainder of the season to have a chance in either the NL West or a potential Wild Card spot. Raise your hand if you think this team is capable of winning 60 percent of their games over the rest of the year? Anyone? Going down the table by winning percentage will give you an idea of where the team would finish if they played at said winning percentage.

I think the takeaway from this isn’t just oh-god-the-Giants-are-terrible-everything-sucks (which is true), but rather early season wins and losses count. I can’t remember how many times I heard the old phrase of: “It’s early!” from all directions when the team was doing so poorly in April. The point is that wins, and conversely the losses, count just as much now as they do in later months. Sadly, for the Giants, the hole that the team has dug has been so deep that they are unlikely to emerge from it anytime soon.

What the Madison Bumgarner injury means (in numbers)

Earlier today, shocking news surfaced for the San Francisco Giants and their ace pitcher, Madison Bumgarner:

The Giants’ left-handed ace sustained a sprained left shoulder and bruised ribs after being involved a dirt bike accident on the team’s day off in Colorado on Thursday, the club said.

That’s from an Andrew Baggarly post.

Losing Bumgarner for any amount of time is a crushing blow to the Giants’ playoff chances. Bumgarner has been the model for consistency and dominance since he became a full-time starter for the Giants in 2011. There are few pitchers in baseball that are a lock to throw 200 innings each year and post WAR totals of 4-5 wins; Bumgarner was among them. Not to mention the general attitude that Bumgarner plays the game with and it’s easy to see how much the Giants will miss him while he works on getting healthy.

But, the question is raised: “Just how much will the Giants miss Bumgarner?”

First, a few assumptions:

  1. The Giants, as projected by FanGraphs, are currently on pace for an 83 win season. We’ll use this as our starting point.*
  2. We’ll speculate that Bumgarner would be worth 5 wins over a full season in 2017; that’s pretty much in line with his projections and recent history.
  3. We’ll assume that the Giants will have three methods to replace Bumgarner: (1) with a 0 WAR pitcher (purely replacement level production); (2) with a 0.5 WAR pitcher; and (3) with a 1 WAR pitcher.

Using those as starting points, we can calculate the loss of Bumgarner’s value over those three levels (with 0 WAR, 0.5 WAR, and 1 WAR replacements). Then, subtract that from the remainder of the projected 83 wins and you get the following adjustments.

Games Missed Win Adjustment (0 WAR) Win Adjustment (0.5 WAR) Win Adjustment (1 WAR)
10 83 83 84
20 82 83 83
30 82 83 83
40 82 82 83
50 81 82 82
60 81 82 82
70 81 81 82
80 81 81 82
90 80 81 81
100 80 80 81
110 80 80 81
120 79 80 80
130 79 79 80
140 79 79 80

You can plug in your preferred numbers and get an idea of what the team’s win record would look like. If Bumgarner misses 80 additional games on this season and the Giants get 0 WAR level production from Bumgarner’s replacement? That drops the Giants to an 80 win team. If he somehow misses just 60 games and the Giants get 1 WAR level production from his replacement, then the Giants would drop to an 82 win team.

Things really look bleak at the 120 games missed mark and beyond, essentially the rest of the season for Bumgarner. If Bumgarner were to miss the remainder of the season, or most of it, the Giants drop to a high 70s win total. That would put them much closer to the Diamondbacks and Rockies in terms of projected win totals for 2017.

5 WAR pitchers don’t grow on trees and the Giants’ replacements for Bumgarner — outside of Tyler Beede — aren’t exciting. Or, good, really. And while I’m a big fan of Beede, you can’t expect him to do what Bumgarner can do. He’s still working his way through AAA and he’s always projected as more of a mid-rotation guy than staff ace. It’s not a dig towards Beede but Bumgarner is just that good. Just that special.

Of course, things shift around if you play with our assumptions: What if the Giants are more like a 86 win team? What if they find better than 1 WAR production from Bumgarner’s replacement? What if Bumgarner somehow only misses a brief amount of time? You can adjust things where you’d like, but the math is still quite ugly.

* The Dodgers, by FanGraphs, are projected to finish the season at 93 wins. The Rockies at 80 wins. The Diamondbacks at 79 wins.

Wednesday Night Graph: Matt Cain and the two seam fastball

Matt Cain, on the back of two consecutive successful starts, has quite a few people asking the annual question of: “Is Matt Cain good again?” This question almost always invariably gets raised every year when Cain, who hasn’t had an average or better season since 2012, manages a solid-to-good start. It’s become a tradition of sorts among the diehard fans waiting for the 2006-2012 version Cain to return.

On the surface of things, Cain’s current 3.31 ERA is a bright spot, but it’s common knowledge that ERA rarely tells the whole story of a pitcher’s success or failure. Cain’s pitching predictors like FIP or xFIP suggest he’s performed more like that of a mid-5.00 ERA pitcher. His strikeout rate as measured by strikeout percentage (16.7 percent) is nearly three points off his career (19.9 percent). His walk rate as measured by walk percentage (11.1 percent) is nearly three points off his career (8.2 percent). He’s given up 15 hits in 16.1 innings pitched and his strand percentage of 90.4 percent is scary as hell.

He’s not striking out hitters like he once did. He’s walking hitters more than ever and he’s been fortunate to leave a lot of runners on base. All of that is bad. Really bad, actually.

So, when people ask the “Is he good?” question I think they know the answer already; he’s not good. It’s probably not going to happen. Baseball players age and decline. It’s a cruel fact of baseball. The projection systems seem to think he’s a half-win pitcher and given his age and recent history, that seems reasonable.

However, that doesn’t mean that Cain’s mini-success to start 2017 isn’t interesting. In fact, I’ve been looking forward to his starts. That’s not something I would have typed last year or the year before. Why do I look forward to Cain’s starts? To the naked eye, it appears that he’s trying to do things differently. And I’ve always found it interesting when major leaguers try to do something different.

Cain is throwing a two seam fastball more this season. That sentence alone might not interest you, but it’s not a pitch, historically, that Cain has relied heavily on.

Here’s the obligatory graph:

I queried the rate of two seam fastballs among all Cain fastballs since 2008. In 2016, Cain threw just 47 pitches that PITCHf/x classified as a two seam fastball; in 2017, he’s already thrown 64 two seam fastballs. The data from 2014-2016 is a little hinky since Cain was largely hurt and didn’t pitch all that much. When healthy, Cain threw the two seam fastball between 10-20 percent of the time.

Cain’s average heater is a career low 89.4 mph in 2017. It would seam that Cain is trying to focus more on movement than the traditional four seam fastball that he broke into the majors with. Years and injuries have seen Cain’s velocity drop from a high of low 90’s in from 2005-2007 to around 90 mph more recently. In that regard, it makes sense: if you are losing velocity on your fastball, might as well try to mix in some movement to compensate.

Our data table of Cain’s two seam usage rates:

Year Total FT FT%
2008 184 8.3%
2009 261 12.8%
2010 296 13.5%
2011 202 10.7%
2012 311 19.4%
2013 385 27.2%
2014 233 32.6%
2015 124 24.4%
2016 47 6.0%
2017 64 42.4%
There are a ton of caveats to throw out: we are really only talking about three starts and 15 innings of baseball. That’s beyond microscopic when talking about sample size. But intuitively it would make sense that Cain would want to try and use the two seam fastball more these days.  A successful Matt Cain is going to be the crafty version. The days of him blowing fastballs up in the zone past hitters are gone. Who knows, maybe Cain can find some kind of resurgence as a pitcher by mastering a new pitch. It’s something to watch for, even if unlikely.

Giants sign Korean third baseman, Jae-gyu Hwang

Per Andrew Baggarly:

The club has agreed to terms with Korean infielder Jae-gyun Hwang on a minor league contract that includes an invitation to major league spring training.

Baggarly goes on to note that Hwang’s contract is for $1.5M if he makes the major league roster and he will be invited to spring training. Hwang, 29, is coming off a .330/.391/.558 season for the Lotte Giants of the Korean Baseball Organization (KBO). He hit 22 doubles, 3 triples, 26 home runs, and walked 47 times to 64 strikeouts. That’s all fine and dandy, but this is the part where I tell you much of a crazy hitters league the KBO is.

Consider the following:

  • Hwang’s .949 OPS placed him as the 19th best hitter in the KBO.
  • The KBO had six (six!) hitters with an OPS of 1.000 or greater. The majors had one (David Ortiz) in 2016.
  • Among all types of professional and independent baseball leagues, it’s hard to find a league that’s more offense-friendly than the KBO.

League context matters a good bit.

And while Hwang’s spike in power is at least quasi-interesting, it appears more to be a reflection in the changes in the KBO’s high octane run-scoring. Consider this additional line graph of home runs per game in the KBO from 2010-2016.

In 2016, the KBO averaged 1.04 home runs per game; for comparison in 1999 the average home runs per game in MLB was an even more ridiculous 1.14 per game. Ex-Giant, and former KBO pitcher, Ryan Sadowski, actually wrote a little bit about his time in the KBO. It’s a good read for a guy that pitched in both the majors and the KBO for three years. (He talks about the changes in the ball and the decision to let more foreign-born players in the league as potential reasons for the influx of offense.)

So, this is all a long winded way of saying that you really can’t take KBO numbers at face value. As always, league context applies heavily. I am sure there are smarter people out there that have worked on translations between the leagues, and it would be very interesting to see. Hwang joins more Korean players as they make their way to the majors. The good news for Hwang and the Giants is that there really is no risk here. Hwang is young enough at 29 to not be too far past the 27-28 peak for ballplayers. Also, from what I can find, his defense seems passable. You really can’t write about Hwang and not bring up this legendary bat flip. Dude has 80-grade bat flip ability.

It’s likely that he’ll be more of a bench piece/non-factor, but kudos to the Giants for being creative in trying to fill a team need. He’s going to be a spring training storyline that’s actually worth following.

Hunter Pence’s hidden skill

Despite appearances, Hunter Pence has been a well above average player since he debuted in 2007 with the Houston Astros. Since 2007, Pence has averaged 3.2 wins above replacement (Fangraphs method) per season. If you prorate his WAR to 162 games — he’s played just 52 and 106 games over the past two seasons — you arrive at 3.8 WAR per 162 games played. Pence does it by being a well rounded player; he’s posted positive run totals over his career in hitting (141.4 runs), fielding (33.4), and base running (7.1).

This is nothing new, of course, but what else does the current San Francisco Giants right fielder bring to the table that might go unnoticed? The ability to get hits on infield balls in play. Consider the following table — it’s raw infield hit totals since 2007.

Infield Hit Totals, 2007-2016

Name G IFH
Ichiro Suzuki 1543 335
Hunter Pence 1376 219
Dustin Pedroia 1367 198
Derek Jeter 1068 187
Adam Jones 1362 182
Alexei Ramirez 1371 177
Ryan Braun 1354 175
Michael Bourn 1344 169
Elvis Andrus 1221 167
Erick Aybar 1312 160

When looking at Pence, only the masterful Ichiro has had more infield hits since 2007. While Ichiro’s infield hit totals are staggering, Pence’s 219 infield hits are the second most in the majors in this time frame and he is the only other player to break the 200-hit mark.

It’s clear that both Pence and Ichiro posses an infield hit skill. Ichiro’s historic bat control, speed, hitting stance, and left-handedness make him a prime candidate to rack up infield hits. Often times when Ichiro makes contact with the ball, he’s already moving out of the box. Pence, however, is a right handed hitter and thus has to take a couple of extra steps to get out of the box and head toward first base.

You’ll note that since we are just looking at raw totals, Ichiro has an obvious games played advantage — he appeared in nearly 200 more games than Pence over this time period. If we adjust the infield hit totals per game, and then prorate that to a 162 game season, we get the following table.

Infield Hit Totals Per 162 games adjusted, 2007-2016

Name G IFH IFH/G IFH/162
Ichiro Suzuki 1543 335 0.22 35
Derek Jeter 1068 187 0.18 28
Hunter Pence 1376 219 0.16 26
Dustin Pedroia 1367 198 0.14 23
Elvis Andrus 1221 167 0.14 22
Adam Jones 1362 182 0.13 22
Ryan Braun 1354 175 0.13 21
Alexei Ramirez 1371 177 0.13 21
Michael Bourn 1344 169 0.13 20
Erick Aybar 1312 160 0.12 20

Ichiro, expectedly, keeps his title as the infield hit king. There’s a little jockeying when you adjust things (Jeter moves up to #2 and Pence falls to #3) but it’s still an interesting list.

The other question that I think we should ask is: Infield hits are obviously a good thing, but how much value does it add to the player? Using linear weights we can get a rough idea of how much value Pence is gaining from his annual 20-plus infield hits a year. I am using a simple equation based on  Tom Tango’s base run values. Essentially, a single, which all infield hits should be, are worth .46 runs. So, our basic equation is (IFH*.46 = run value). (I am open to debate on whether or not this is the best way to do this, but for now, it’s where I am headed.)

Doing so, we get the following table.

Infield Hit Total Run Values per 162 games adjusted, 2007-2016

Name G IFH IFH/G IFH/162 RV
Ichiro Suzuki 1543 335 0.22 35 16.3
Derek Jeter 1068 187 0.18 28 13.1
Hunter Pence 1376 219 0.16 26 11.9
Dustin Pedroia 1367 198 0.14 23 10.9
Elvis Andrus 1221 167 0.14 22 10.3
Adam Jones 1362 182 0.13 22 10.0
Ryan Braun 1354 175 0.13 21 9.7
Alexei Ramirez 1371 177 0.13 21 9.7
Michael Bourn 1344 169 0.13 20 9.4
Erick Aybar 1312 160 0.12 20 9.1

Per 162 games, Pence is adding nearly 12 runs of value. Thinking of it in terms of WAR, that’s one win of value based on just infield hits. That’s an amazing amount of value added. As stated above, Pence does nearly everything well, but if you took away his ability to reach base on infield hits, he moves from a four-win player to a three-win player; he would still be a worthwhile addition to the team, but not nearly as impactful.

It’s easy to say that’s the beauty of baseball — players excelling in weird and unexpected ways — but, honestly, that’s the beauty of baseball and one of the reasons why I love the game so much.

Giants add potential bench depth with newly signed trio

Per Baseball America’s Matt Eddy, the Giants have signed 1B Michael Morse, OF Justin Ruggiano, and C/1B Josmil Pinto to minor league deals.

Morse, who turns 35 in March, is well known to Giants fans for his successful one year run with the team in 2014. (Also, for this home run which resulted in me nearly jumping through the roof.) The Giant signed Morse to a one-year, $6M deal heading into 2014 and were rewarded with a .279/.336/.475 slash. In 2014, Morse appeared in 131 games for the Giants — the 2nd most games appeared for the slugger in his career. With Morse, that’s the rub; he’s normally hurt. However, what Morse does bring to the Giants is some sweet, sweet memories and the ability to really hit baseballs far. He’s a large human that, when healthy, is an above average hitter. Positionally, Morse is below average wherever he plays, but in a scenario with the Giants in which he made the team, he would fill the role of Huge Person That Hits Home Runs Off The Bench.

Ruggiano, who turns 35 in April, profiles, in some ways, like Michael Morse; he’s a talented ballplayer that has had issues staying healthy. He appeared in just nine games in 2016 due to shoulder and hamstring issues. Teams have been rewarded when Ruggiano has managed to stay on the field. His average WAR per 162 games played is a respectable 1.8 wins. He also fills a need on the Giants in that he crushes LHP (137 career wRC+). He’s played some centerfield in his career but these days he’s more of a left fielder.

Pinto, 28 in March, has appeared in the majors with the Twins and Brewers. In 286 career plate appearances in the majors, Pinto has hit well with a slash of .252/.336/.436 (116 wRC+). Pinto, like Morse and Ruggiano, is a right-handed hitter. You can listen to a scouting take from 2014 on Pinto. Short version: he’s a bat-first catcher. It’s an interesting pick-up for the Giants, but it’s unlikely he’ll see time at the major league level in 2017.

All three players should be viewed as bench options. Ruggiano is probably the most interesting player of the three. He’s a better defender than Morse and he hits LHP quite well which should be the main consideration for a bench position. Morse and Ruggiano both profile as talented but chronically injured players and, at 35 years old, both aren’t great bets to suddenly find good health. Pinto is interesting because of his age and former prospect pedigree. He’s a good addition, if unlikely to see any at-bats with the Giants in the upcoming year.

Depth signings aren’t sexy, but they are needed as teams look to fill out rosters at the upper levels. And, who knows, maybe we’ll see a couple of mashed dingers along the way.

Friday Graph: Matt Cain’s Release Point Over The Years

In early December, after the Giants inked Mark Melancon to a four year, $62 million dollar deal, GM Bobby Evans had an interesting quote on the state of the team’s payroll and offseason plans going forward:

“I don’t think there’s anything more to ask of ownership,” Evans said, referring to the payroll. “It’s really a matter of what I can do within what we have.”

And, the real thing that caught my eye:

“I’ve talked to Matt at length this winter and his expectation and commitment is to come in here and fight for that fifth spot,” Evans said Wednesday. “He believes he can come in and give us a significant number of innings.”

Matt Cain has largely been hurt and/or ineffective since 2013. 2012 was the last time Cain would be an above average pitcher (126 ERA+, 3.40 FIP, 3.7 WAR). Since that season, Cain has not topped 200 innings pitched and, because of injuries, in the last three years he has yet to break the 100 inning mark. Because of arm troubles, Cain largely moved away from the fastball — which has lost a few ticks since his earlier days — and instead relied on a lower vertical release point and his slider. I wrote about this a little in 2014 on McCovey Chronicles on this particular post.

Since then, has much changed with Cain’s release point?

Not much. Cain saw a slight uptick in his vertical release point this past season, but he is nowhere near his 2008-2010 levels. If you look at the graph on a yearly average (pictured below), you can see a very slight upward movement on Cain’s release point, but nothing that I would say is significant.

A quick look at Cain’s pitch-type data on FanGraphs reveals that he’s still throwing the slider nearly a quarter of the time (25.4 percent in 2016) as he has continued to back away from his fastball.

While the Giants will surely give Cain every opportunity to compete and win the 5th starter job in spring training — Cain is owed $20.8M this season — it’s unlikely that Cain will be able to provide the Giants with much positive value. And, with Tyler Beede in the wings, it’s likely that Cain won’t be pitching much in the rotation past June. For all the credit the Giants get for making shrewd contract extensions on their homegrown players, the Cain extension, in hindsight, is probably one the team would rather pass on if it could do things again. Cain has indeed been a great Giant, and one of my personal favorites, but his age, injury history, and other indicators suggest that if the Giants are depending on great things from Cain in 2017, they are most likely going to be disappointed.

About that Brian Dozier rumor …

Jon Heyman tweets, and the world listens:

“SFGIants like Dozier but he’s seen as “not a likely fit” for them, as they have Panik. Dodgers still viewed as favorite.”

Giants like Brian Dozier. I like ice cream. Alert the presses.

Dozier, who is coming off a monster 2016 campaign, is a personal favorite of mine — and obviously a lot of other teams looking to upgrade at second base. Dozier’s 5.9 wins above replacement (FanGraphs method) last season would have ranked first on the Giants (just beating out Brandon Crawford’s 5.8 WAR). Since 2013, Dozier has been worth 2.5, 4.7, 3.3, and 5.9 WAR. He’s an obviously excellent ballplayer that would fit well on any team.

However, the Giants seem like an odd duck match for Dozier’s services.

* Joe Panik already exists and is a thing

I am not sure where the Giants would play Dozier if they did acquire him. Dozier has played 5,000-plus innings in the field at second and other than the time he briefly spent at shortstop in 2012, he’s never played anywhere else at the major league level. Looking at the defensive data, Dozier appears to be an average defender. UZR has him at -4.4 runs over his career at second; DRS has him at +7 runs; and the Fan Scouting Report has him at +4 runs.

Joe Panik, by comparison, is an excellent defender at second. UZR has Panik at +13.7 runs over his career on defense; DRS has him at +4 runs and FSR at +7 runs. You’d probably be willing, all things considered, to give Joe Panik a half-win on defense on Dozier over the course of a full season. Panik might not be the 136 wRC+ batter he was in 2015 going forward, but he’s an average hitter — with the potential for a little more — who isn’t going to cost much.

Which brings us back to just exactly where Dozier would play? I don’t see the Giants moving Panik to left field to let Dozier man second base; would Dozier be open to playing LF? How would he translate on defense to LF? The defensive spectrum tells us that playing LF is easier than 2B, so it’s not crazy to think that Dozier would be a fine LF given time and practice, but it’s still a weird notion.

* The Giants don’t have the right amount of prospect capital

The Giants just don’t have the prospects to acquire a player like Dozier. While the farm system seems to be on a slight upswing, it’s still a bottom third system and the top prospects — guys like Tyler Beede — the Giants will most likely need sooner rather than later. It’s hard to see any scenario where A) The Twins really make Dozier available and B) the Giants have enough in the way of prospects to make a deal happen.

* Dozier would fill a need in the lefty-hitting department

As Grant Brisbee mentioned in this post, the Giants are going to have real problems hitting left-handed pitching in the upcoming season. The lineup is largely slanted towards left-handed batters. Posey and Pence should do well against LHP, but outside of that, it’s not exactly a pretty sight. Dozier would instantly give the Giants a guy that really whomps on lefties. Dozier’s career wRC+ against LHP is a robust 131. Having Dozier, Posey, and Pence all in the same lineup against southpaws would help mitigate the lefty-heavy nature of the lineup.

Brian Dozier is a really good baseball player. The Giants would be a better team with him on it, but that doesn’t mean it’s a thing that is going to happen. In fact, it’s really hard to see how it would even occur — current team makeup, prospects needed to trade for Dozier, etc. Maybe in an alternate reality. Like most baseball trade rumors in December it’s nice to think about for a few fleeting seconds, but, yeah, probably not actually going to happen.