College Kids Competed in a SABR Contest to Figure Out the Best Cole Hamels Trade

Photo Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports
Photo Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

We know Cole Hamels would like to be traded, which is something that Ruben Amaro (it seems) would like to do. But Ruben’s style of looking at a list of a team’s top prospects and saying, “I’ll have the top three, please” doesn’t seem to be working. So college students in the Diamond Dollars Case Competition at March’s Society for American Baseball Research Analytics Conference in Phoenix (DDCCAMSFABRACIP, for short) did their best SABR work to hammer out a deal.

A group of Arizona State masters students — including a kid who interned (paid? unpaid?) as a statistical analyst with the Arizona Diamondbacks and has heard from several major league clubs who want to interview him — said the best deal would be for the Phillies to send Cole Hamels to the Red Sox for elder Manuel Margot and pitchers Henry Owens and Eduardo Rodriquez. Here’s how the winners explained their method:

Once we identified the 30 nearest neighbors, we used their production to simulate Hamels’ WARP each year from age 31 to 35. We then ran simulations on each age specific histogram. Each histogram contains six bins, with bin sizes dependent on the WARP of our nearest neighbors at that age. In each simulation, bins were selected through random number generation. Because WARP is uniformly distributed within bins, we randomly selected the projected WARP within the selected bin. If a player had not reached the necessary age for a specific histogram (e.g. Jon Lester), he was not considered in that histogram.

Reached for comment, Amaro was terse:

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A histro-what? Histogram? Is that the thing where people post photos of their cats?


18 Responses

  1. The scary thing is I actually understand what they did. This disqualifies me for the job of Phillies GM.

    1. In sabermetric analysis, you replace the player’s production– not the player. Let’s say Hamels’s WARP for the next 5 seasons averages 4 per season. Using sabermetrics, you’re likely not replacing 1-for-1. Rather, the combination of Manuel Margot, Henry Owens, and Eduardo Rodriguez– a defensively-sound righty OF with some pop and two southpaws who project as top-of-the-rotation material– would theoretically replace Hamels’s production while simultaneously filling other holes in the roster.

      Of course, with all statistics, there’s a certain degree of volatility and uncertainty. Take it for what it’s worth.

    1. Wouldn’t we all? But there was no fucking way Cherington is going to trade Swihart before Bethancourt’s injury… and there’s no motherfucking way he’s going to do it now.

        1. Yup, caught that. My bad. Too many Christians behind the plate… hah hah hah. Bad joke.

  2. Owens and Rodriguez would put our future rotation in much more stable hands and make it a strength . I’d take this trade but the problem is the Phillies have 1 position prospect in JP. Unless they really hit big on position players over the next 2 drafts, they will not have a lineup to trot out there.

    1. Agreed. A 1-2-3 of Owens, Nola, and Rodriguez could in principle, and given some time, rival Lee-Halladay-Hamels. If that trade would go down (it won’t because numbers are the devil’s playthings, according to RAJ), we could add Margot to the position prospect list. I really do think Franco will pan out–he’s just too good not to make it. And Asche is as close to an Utley we’re going to have. We’ve got some good bats coming (see: Zach Green, Dylan Cozens, and if he ever stays healthy Kelly Dugan).

  3. the winner of the contest would simply have to write…”ruben sucks, hamels wont get traded ever”

    because thats whats going to happen

  4. We will get to the All-Star break before Amaro understands what was done here

  5. Cole, are you in a fraternity?

    Are you in a fraternity?

    Are you? I’m asking you a question. Are you in a fraternity?

    Are you Steve Jobs?

    Hold on a second! Are you the billionaire owner of Apple computers?

    Oh, okay. Well, in that case you got no right to wear new balance sneakers, ever!

  6. So for $25 million a year a big piece of fucking monkey shit kkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk machine, who apparently didn’t work on his swing for one fucking second over the winter and instead chose to write fucking books with his whore white wife, finishes spring training LEADING ALL OF BASEBALL in strikeouts while hitting a robust .171.
    Fuck him, his whore white wife and you fucking Rube for keeping that piece of fucking shit monkey around. FUCK OFF

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