Houston Astros Top 10 Shirseys

Click here to read a primer on our shirsey rankings. 
Click here to read the Astros BP Top 10 Prospects.

System Quote: “The best time to wear a striped sweater, is all the time.”

Houston Astros Top Ten:

  1. Hunter Pence Double Printed Shirsey
  2. Kaz Matsui
  3. Brad “Lights-out” Lidge
  4. Roger Clemens
  5. Bud Norris
  6. 80 #Want
  7. Lance Berkman
  8. Carlos Lee
  9. Roy Oswalt
  10. J.D. Martinez

Screen Shot 2013-11-03 at 6.12.29 PM  1. Hunter Pence Double Printed Shirsey

  Size: M

  Current Status: Sold

  Website: eBay

  Price: $8.00 + $4.95 Shipping

 eBay Description: “The Medium is a missprint, having the whole decal from the back “Pence  9” printed on the front and the back along with the “Houston 9”

 The Tools: 8 derp; 8 not on team anymore; 4 player obscurity; 5 potential design/color scheme; 6 price

What Happened To The Player in 2013: As a derpy scruffy old guy, Hunter Pence put up pretty good numbers for the Giants. He then signed a 5-year, $90 bajillion dollar contract ensuring he won’t be back on the Astros any time soon.

Strengths: First thing that jumps out at you is the double printing on the front of the shirt. Very rare to see such a trait in a shirsey. Most shirts only have the name on the back. This has it on the front and back. True two-way shirt. Top of the line oddity. Good, but not great price hindered by high shipping costs. Expected due to placement on ebay.

Weaknesses: Player relatively well known/still producing at a high level in the major leagues. Despite top end tools, placement on ebay always raises questions about makeup due to disagreements with the shirt’s previous owner(s). The old Astros color scheme feels outdated and uncool right now, but has the projection to be a hot commodity on the market.

Overall Future Potential:  7; one of the best shirts in the game.

Realistic Role: High 6; well above-average shirsey

Risk Factor/Injury History: High risk due to unknown nature of the second shirt and usual question marks that come with eBay.

The Year Ahead: Recently shipped off to a new owner, this shirsey should become a huge part of that owner’s life fairly quickly.

Wardrobe ETA: 2014


2. Kaz Matsui

  Size: Unknown
  Current Status: Owned by @leistomania93
  Website: Twitter
  Price: Ask @leistomania93

 

The Tools: 7 derp; 6 awesomeness; 7 player obscurity; 5 future design/color Scheme

What Happened To The Player in 2013: Matsui played for the Japanese team in the World Baseball Classic. He may or may not have done things in the NPB this year for the Rakuten Eagles. No one is sure.

Strengths: The derp and the player obscurity on this shirt are great. It’s fairly easy to find a Kaz Matsui Mets shirsey, but finding one of Astros ilk is rare indeed. Kaz Matsui always inspires a chuckle in the gut, and I’m sure the lucky owner of this shirt has more gut chuckles than the average fellow.

Weaknesses: Like many of the older Astros shirseys, this scheme is lackluster and uninspiring. Worst aspect is that the shirt is already owned and therefore probably not up for sale. 

Overall Future Potential:  High 6; potential to ruin several dates for the owner 

Realistic Role: 6; occasional all-star shirsey

Risk Factor/Injury History: Low risk. Already out of MLB. 

The Year Ahead: If Kaz Matsui can do something insane like appear on a Japanese game show that goes viral or eats Ichiro then this shirt’s stock could rise. More likely that it stays put.

Wardrobe ETA: 2013

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2013 World Series Drinking Game

We already created a drinking game once this postseason back during the Tigers-A’s ALDS series. We weren’t planning on making another until we realized how necessary it might be for this World Series. Game one was a puke-inducing shitshow of doom and while we hope the Cardinals show up for Game 2, we want to offer you another entertainment option for the rest of the series. Enjoy and drink responsibly.

DRINK ANY TIME…

In-game Cardinals:

  • Pete Kozma derps
  • You realize that Shane Robinson exists
  • You see Tony Larussa
  • You see Tony Cruz
  • You see Tony Hawk
  • Shelby Miller sighting
  • Trevor Rosenthal throws an off-speed pitch
  • Daniel Descalso exhibits “grit”
  • Matt Adams infield hit
  • Matt Adams steal
  • Close up of Matt Adams’ face
  • Albert Pujols hits a home run
  • Adron Chambers bats because the Cardinals have no other good bench options
  • You wonder if Joe Kelly really needs those glasses

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#MUPWATCH: MUPDATE 1

If you are reading this you probably know what #MUPWATCH is. If you don’t you should get a Twitter account and then watch this video. Please also follow @jessespector and @amandarykoff for all your #MUPWATCH needs. 

As of 2:37 ET on Monday, October 7th, there have been 32 instances of baseball related #MUP lightings.

Of those 32 baseball-related #MUPS that were lit over the past week, 24 of those were lit in TBS promo ads. TBS’ #MUP lighting habits are absolutely deplorable and downright disturbing. Here’s a team by team breakdown:

Screen Shot 2013-10-07 at 3.24.52 PM

The Pirates lead the pack in lit #MUPS as their storybook season has taken a dangerous turn. Not far behind them are the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cardinals must change their ways before more #MUPS fall to the arson’s torch. The Braves and the Red Sox only have one #MUP lit apiece and have done a fantastic job of keeping #MUPS out of harm’s way. Scientists believe the Navy/Red color scheme might be keeping the #MUPS safe, but I personally think that the #MUP lighters, whomever they may be, tend to stay away from foam tomahawks and beards.

The remaining related baseball #MUPS are as follows:

  • A lit #MUP at PNC park. At least the #MUP’s last memory was in a nice place.
  • A #MUP reportedly lit at Dodger Stadium stuck in post game traffic.
  • A Fenway Park #MUP.
  • I heard a #MUP at Busch Stadium in St. Louis. I will never be the same.
  • A whopping four #MUPS were set ablaze on the Rays Radio Broadcast despite four separate orders from David Price to “SAVE IT NERDS.”
  • Three more unspecified #MUPS. May the families of these unclaimed #MUPS find peace in these troubling days.

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2013 Regular Season Review: THE FUN STUFF (The Hitters)

On Monday, the Tampa Bay Rays defeated the Texas Wranglers last night for the exciting opportunity to go to Cleveland, Ohio for a night of competitive baseball. What a treat. Last night, the Pittsburgh Pirates WON A PLAYOFF GAME against the Cincinnati Reds in the NL Wild Card game and will move on to face the St. Louis Best Organization In Baseball. Honestly, I’m still mourning the death of the ridiculous 2013 regular season and I probably will be for a while. In an effort to remember the year that was and because I spend so much time on FanGraphs anyway, I’m gonna just gonna go through a multitude of interesting statistical finishes throughout baseball and maybe possibly probably not say a few things about them. We will probably do some sort of CFB Awards post after or later in the postseason, but this is what I’ve got for now. And again, thank you based FanGraphs for being too good to be true.

Important:

  • Qualified hitters = minimum 500 PA’s
  • Qualified starters = minimum 162 innings pitched
  • Qualified relievers = minimum 49 innings pitched
  • Qualified defenders = minimum 900 innings at a position

I’m gonna do this in four parts: hitters, starting pitchers, relievers and crazy stupid defensive numbers.

We start with the guys that hit the balls with the bats.

HITTERS:

Let’s Talk About WAR:

  • Mike Trout completed his second consecutive 10 win season, finishing with 10.4 WAR. A healthy lead over second place Andrew McCutchen who finished at 8.2 WAR. A brief list of guys who Mike Trout has already surpassed in CAREER WAR: Matt Kemp, Andre Ethier, Nick Markakis, Justin Upton, Buster Posey, Ryan Howard (lolololololol), Marco Scutaro, Josh Willingham and Justin Morneau. Put it this way: there are only 55 players that have produced more WAR since beginning of the 2006 season than Mike Trout has since he came up. Mike Trout the best.

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Cespedes Family Preview: The Tiebreaker

RAYS!

RANGERS!!!

162 games have deemed themselves irrelevant as the fate of two baseballing establishments boils down (really a gross phrase if you think about it) to one night. If you were looking for legitimate analysis, you clicked on the wrong link bud. Instead, we gave you some funny pictures:

Screen Shot 2013-09-29 at 5.01.28 PM

Dragon Darvish

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All The Fantastic “Angels In the Outfield” .gifs

My favorite movie ever is Angels in the Outfield. It reminds me of when I was 6 years old and my biggest concern was whether or not Delino DeShields got a hit that day. I recently re-watched and .gifed all the best parts. There are two categories: Triscuitt Messmer and not Triscuitt Messmer.

NOT TRISCUITT MESSMER

George Knox is done with your shenanigans. He’s also done with the post-game spread. Also, what are those red plastics cups doing in the clubhouse? Maybe the Angels sucked in the beginning of the movie because they were too busy partying like teenagers. 

This how we all feel when we watch Jose Fernandez. Angels goofball pitcher Whit Bass must have seen into the future or something. Also of note: another player on the Angels with a fish name. First Whit Bass, then Tim Salmon, and now Chris Iannetta. 

Triscuitt Messmer

Okay so basically the Angels catcher Triscuitt Messmer is the best thing ever. It’s a Japhet Amador body but behind the dish. He has the social skills of Zack Greinke with Asperger’s and the accent of a bleacher creature. The base running is easily base-clogger status, but his #want is off the charts. Let’s take a closer look at Triscuitt… (also, his name is Triscuitt) 

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Advanced Pitching Metrics: John McDonald For Cy Young

I don’t have a vote for the Cy Young award, but if I did I would vote for one of these three pitchers.

David Carpenter: 

John McDonald:

Ryan Raburn:

In today’s baseball world, strikeouts are key. They are the lifeblood to any good pitcher. 

Ground balls are awesome too by the way.

Also important in today’s modern baseball world are rate stats. Counting stats are frowned upon by many, especially those who cannot count.

Therefore the only way to get good stats are to combine these concepts. When we mix rate stats and strikeouts, we get a fantastic stat called K/9. K/9 measures how many strikeouts a pitcher averages every nine innings. Combining ground balls and rate stats creates GB%. These advanced metrics are the basis for my plea to the Cy Young voters: Vote McDonald, vote Raburn, and vote Carpenter. Scratch those names and I’ll scratch you. Nope, that was a bad sentence. Let’s just get on with it.

Angels RHP David Carpenter: 

  • Carpenter might have a particularly high ERA for a Cy Young candidate as his ERA currently sits at 108.00. At first glance that appears a bit too high to be considered the best pitcher in the league but hold your horses bucko. We all know that ERA is a flawed stat so this number cannot be trusted. His xFIP is almost A HUNDRED points lower. That’s nuts. He just got unlucky this year.
  • Carpenter has also been extremely unlucky this year as evidenced by his insane 100% HR/FB rate.

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#RIG Rankings, Number 5: Aroldis Chapman

 #RIG #RIG #RIG #RIG

#rig is more than just a metric or a scouting term or a joke. It’s way of life. It’s everything and nothing at the same time. Our dad Jason Parks described #rig as “#swagger only more penis specific.” We want to take his perfect idea and perfect it, which doesn’t make sense at all.

Coming in at number 5 on our rig rankings is Cincinnati Reds relief pitcher Aroldis Chapman. With a schlong like kong, he patrols the pitcher’s hump like a man on a mission, but not a Morman mission, a more-man mission.

Photo Evidence:

  • Take a closer look at the pictures below and you can see how baseball pants don’t do their job as much as they assist the #rig to explode and explore. Good thing the Cuban national team wore tight red pants. Chapman loses points for how hard I had to look to get these shots. If I google your name, pictures of your wang shebang should be right there waiting for me.
  • #RIGrade: 60

Screen Shot 2013-09-11 at 5.28.39 PM Screen Shot 2013-09-11 at 5.23.16 PM

Confidence:

  •  Aroldis did this:

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Over-analyzing Gerald Laird’s Chest

Yesterday Braves person Elliot Johnson tweeted a picture of two sets of abdominals. He asked Twitter to determine which midsection stood above the other. One set was impressively ripped and chiseled even though it belonged to the seemingly pudgy Dan Uggla. The other set was Gerald Laird. Laird is the backup catcher for the #BARVES and his midsection looks exactly like you think it would.

Screen Shot 2013-09-09 at 4.59.11 PM

This is a stereotypical back up catcher body. You have a protective layer of pudge surrounding everything to protect the innards from harm and baseballs. But beneath the pudge layer and before the innards layer, you find a layer of muscle. If you look closely you can see the lines of his six pac struggling to break free of the pudge layer, but sadly it never will. Gerald Laird has a fantastically strong core, but you’ll never be able to see that because the muscle is forever trapped beneath the layer of pudge.

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#Rig Rankings, Part 1: The #RIGtroduction

#RIG #RIG #RIG #RIG

#rig is more than just a metric or a scouting term or a joke. It’s way of life. It’s everything and nothing at the same time. Our dad Jason Parks described #rig as “#swagger only more penis specific.” We want to take his perfect idea and perfect it, which doesn’t make sense at all.

Over the course of the next couple weeks, The Cespedes Family Barbecue will undergo a journey of sorts. We will sift through the hundreds of baseballers currently baseballing to determine which one has the most #rig. You’ve read all about sabermetrics. Now prepare for some sabRIGmetrics and some analysRIG and stuff.

The ranking process will be made up of categories three:

Photo Evidence

  • Are there photos of this player that visually displays his #rig to the baseball world? Evidence is a enormous part of the #rig evaluation process and must not be taken lightly.

Confidence

  • Does the player know he has #rig? Does he strut around with the #rig all out and about? When he walks in the room, does the whole room know that the #rig has entered the premises?

On Field #RIG

  • Does the player display #rig on the field? Does his #rig play in games? Can I go to a game and appreciate his #rig in person?

We hope you enjoy the show.