Aaron Harang comments

Next up, a POTD or four on the best available athl... er, best available player from the NL Central...

The Reds have been trying to offload Harang's player* option for a while now, and after laying out the serious jack on Aroldis Chapman, you've got to figure they're feeling the heat from the beancounters.  Harang makes like $12m this year and has an (IIRC) player "mutual" option of about $14m in 2011.  For the Reds, that's like 62% of their payroll, and his W/L's are 3-19 the last two years.


Zduriencik doesn't seem to have much against players from his old NL Central, and Harang is a flyball pitcher who would be coming to Safeco, so...

Matty projects a blizzard of tater pitches blasted into the dreary Seattle cloud cover.  Shandler's very optimistic.  Who got this one right? 

Is Dunn, ah Harang, a candidate for NL-to-AL woes, or would adding novelty to his game work better in a fresh league for a few years?  And why is every Adam Dunn-sized pitcher in ML history a finesse/polish pitcher?  Dodgas fans wanna know...

Anything you want to see buried in, er, covered by the pile of POTD'ness imminent, let us know and we'll see what we can do...


Dr D



...I predict a blizzard of hard hit balls.  Not all of them HRs, but a 21.3 LD% in the NL where he gets to face pitchers 1 time in 9 is going to go up to 23 or 24% in the AL and he's going to have a BABIP of like .330 with a normal defense or .300 with the Mariners' defense. :)
Add onto that the flyball rate and even Safeco won't stop him from giving up 1.3 HR/9.  He's too aggressive in the zone...he's basically Ryan Franklin with an extra K or two.

M-Pops's picture

B-ref regards Lieber as the most similar pitcher to the Harangutan through age 31.  The comp makes sense to me :  http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/l/liebejo01.shtml 
Maybe it could be useful, in your Harang POTD, to look to Lieber's transition from NL to his one season in the AL...
In 2004, at age 34, Lieber put up an ERA+ 104 in front of MLB's worst defensive team that year (-76.3 UZR). 

M-Pops's picture

Acquired at the deadline by the Cubbies.  I like him more than Vargas/Olson and, to my eye, has more ammo than Fister, though I do like Fister.  Tough on lefties (career .230 BAA), 26 years old, 2003 2nd round pick, and will be making the minimum after spending most of last season in AAA.
Supposed to compete for 5-spot in CHI rotation and becomes arb-eligable after 2010.  I would like to see him do a Ryan Franklin, circa 2001 impression as our swingman out of the 'pen.  
Maybe the M's flip Johermyn Chavez+Vargas/Olson for him?  I would prefer this type of deal to the "Lopez plus for Liriano" deal that was floated a while ago. 


The conclusion (and premises 2-4) all follow powerfully from premise 1, IMHO.
Is premise 1 true?  It could very well be... solid analysis dude...
And if that be the case, that Harang is challenging too much with now-mushier stuff, the NL-AL transition will indeed be a major problemo.  One thing about the AL, it punishes mistakes viciously.

M-Pops's picture

With O-Cab signing with the Reds, Janish is the odd man out.  He does not walk as much as Hanahan, but he is Jack-Wilson-esque with the glove at SS.  Janish is also relatively young and still possibly has defensive upside left (or atleast an opportunity to pull away from the .211 avg he put up last season).
Z likes defense, right?  Having Janish available either on the bench or in AAA during Wilson's DL stints (for the next two seasons) seems preferable to Hanahan/Josh Wilson/Woodward.  When Wilson is healthy, we have our late-game defensive sub for Lopez.
Z, have Walt include Janish in the Harang deal :)  

M-Pops's picture

Janish also serves as an emergency relief pitcher:  92 on the black!
Would make the decision to go with an 11 man staff a little easier.  Someone please remind me - does Jack Z value flexibility? 

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