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The Athletic: Free Agents who signed after Pitchers and Catchers

My latest for The Athletic looks at free agents who signed after the offseason was technically over, listing both the richest contracts handed out after pitchers and catchers had reported to camp and the top performances by players who signed that late. I pitched the piece in anticipation of this spring yielding both the richest contract handed out after pitchers and catchers reported and the most contracts with a guarantee of at least eight-figures agreed to at such a late date. Both records were set while I was researching and writing it, and there will be more where those came from given the quality of free agents still remaining on the market now a week past pitchers and catchers. My goal here, as it so often is, was to put all of that in context.

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Posted by on February 20, 2018 in My Writing

 

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All-Time DROP Leaders

For my latest post in SI.com’s The Strike Zone blog I created a new statistic designed to identify the best late-round picks in the history of Major League Baseball’s annual amateur player draft. That statistic, DROP (Draft Round Opportunity Points) simply multiplies a player’s career wins above repacement (Baseball-Reference version) by the round in which they were drafted. It’s a blunt tool, but an effective one. You can read more about it and the all-time top 10 in DROP in my Strike Zone post. Meanwhile, here is a more extensive leader list that didn’t fit over there:

Player Team Pos Year Rd Pick# bWAR DROP
Mike Piazza LAD 1B 1988 62 1,380 59.4 3,683
Keith Hernandez STL 1B 1971 42 785 60.0 2,520
Mark Buehrle CWS P 1998 38 1,139 56.8 2,158
Kenny Rogers TEX P 1982 39 816 51.4 2,005
John Smoltz DET P 1985 22 574 69.5 1,529
Ryne Sandberg PHI 2B 1978 20 511 67.5 1,350
Andy Pettitte NYY P 1990 22 594 60.8 1,338
Orlando Hudson TOR SS 1997 43 1,280 30.9 1,329
Albert Pujols STL 3B 1999 13 402 94.5 1,229
Kenny Lofton HOU OF 1988 17 428 68.2 1,159
Roy Oswalt HOU P 1996 23 684 50.2 1,155
Al Cowens KCR SS 1969 75 1,028 15.2 1,140
Brett Butler ATL OF 1979 23 573 49.4 1,136
Jeff Conine KCR 3B 1987 58 1,226 19.4 1,125
Bret Saberhagen KCR P 1982 19 580 59.2 1,125
Mark Grace CHC 1B 1985 24 622 46.1 1,106
Jeff Kent TOR SS 1989 20 523 55.2 1,104
Buddy Bell CLE 2B 1969 16 375 66.1 1,058
Jorge Posada NYY SS 1990 24 646 42.7 1,025
Ken Griffey Sr. CIN OF 1969 29 682 34.4 998
Nolan Ryan CIN P 1965 12 295 81.8 982
 
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Posted by on June 6, 2014 in Lists

 

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