Bobby Dalbec - What do we have

ookami7m

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Is Dalbec... good?

As of right now, his line is a pretty goofy .214/.290/.643 — yup, that's a .429 Isolated Power!

His PA since coming up: K HR K 1B K K K K K GO FO K K LO K BB K GO GO HR 1B FO K PU HR BB K K BB GO HR... and he's due up next inning — yup, that's a 45% K rate!

I have no idea what to make of this kid.
I was planning on starting a thread after today. Obviously the HR% of hits can’t be sustainable. Surely the K rate too. We all know Dalbec was K prone in the minors and as someone in the other thread mentioned he could be Mark Reynolds v2.
Obviously we’d love for him to keep up the dingers but is he our 1B of next year or if the future?
 

DJnVa

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Cheap power is fine and that K rate is inflated by 7 in his first 9 plate appearances.
 

The Gray Eagle

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In 9 games, Dalbec is now tied for 5th on the team in HRs (tied for 4th among players still on the team.)
In 30 fewer games and more than 100 fewer PAs, Dalbec already has more HRs this year than JD Martinez.
 

nighthob

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I was planning on starting a thread after today. Obviously the HR% of hits can’t be sustainable. Surely the K rate too. We all know Dalbec was K prone in the minors and as someone in the other thread mentioned he could be Mark Reynolds v2.
Obviously we’d love for him to keep up the dingers but is he our 1B of next year or if the future?
Given how bad his defense is, I suspect that Devers is the 1B of the (near) future and eventually the new Papi (i.e. DH) when Casas is ready for the majors (which might be next fall with the distance he keeps sending the ball against major league pitching ... OK, Boston pitching).
 

edoug

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Can’t remember the name of the only other guy in Red Sox history to hit five HR in his first nine games.

i think he has a website named after him, though.
tedcoxrhymeswithredsox.com
 

johnnywayback

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Given how bad his defense is, I suspect that Devers is the 1B of the (near) future and eventually the new Papi (i.e. DH) when Casas is ready for the majors (which might be next fall with the distance he keeps sending the ball against major league pitching ... OK, Boston pitching).
I know this isn't the topic of the thread, but people keep saying this and it keeps being 100% wrong. Here's a link to last year's Statcast OAA data. It tells you that, while Devers certainly isn't in the Arenado/Chapman range as a premium defender, he's...fine! He has a surprising amount of range to his left but sometimes struggles on slow grounders he has to charge -- which, it so happens, is what we all see all the time: great plays in the hole, and frustrating errors on slow choppers. We also all see that he has plenty of arm for the position, and that it is a more accurate arm than it was two years ago, when it was a questionable piece of the puzzle.

He's not a bad defender. He's just chubby. And it's strange to see a chubby guy be athletic. But that's what he is.

On Dalbec, I want to see how pitchers adjust to him and whether he can adjust back. That's what sunk Chavis -- he never had a plan once pitchers realized they should just throw high fastballs. But I do think he's our 1B in 2021, which means we'll get to find out before Casas is ready. The fact that Dalbec plays a premium position well means his floor is a little higher than Chavis's, which is a good thing in terms of potential trade value if we wind up with too many corner guys in 2022/2023.
 

nvalvo

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He finished the day up to .250/.314/.719.

This team has a lot of holes to fill in the offseason. I'd want to add a mid-rotation SP and a couple relievers on the pitching side; on the position player side, we need to add (or retain) a CF and figure out 2B.

So if I were in Chaim's seat, I'd leave well enough alone with Dalbec at 1B, unless somebody wants to send us a good starting pitcher for Dalbec, which I doubt.

Given how bad his defense is, I suspect that Devers is the 1B of the (near) future and eventually the new Papi (i.e. DH) when Casas is ready for the majors (which might be next fall with the distance he keeps sending the ball against major league pitching ... OK, Boston pitching).
It does seem like among Devers, Dalbec, and Casas, we likely have our corner IF/DH situation sorted for the next few years. But Casas will start next season at AA, and if things go well, he should finish it at AAA or a September callup. So he's likely a factor come 2022, which is his age 22 season and also the last season of JDM's deal.

Dalbec is reputed to be a good 3B, and he is also super tall, which is useful at 1B.

Hopefully more Joey Gallo than Mark Reynolds. Did anyone realize Joey Gallo has 9.3 WAR in about 4 seasons' worth of PAs? Mark Reynolds had only 6.8 in 13 seasons. And when I hear Gallo's name, it reminds me of this: Callo not Gallo
Reynolds was a godawful defender, which was a big part of his WAR struggles. But the Diamondbacks got 5.5 WAR (over 3-and-change seasons) out of him for ~$1.5m, and then traded him to Baltimore. It was his post-Arizona career that was basically worthless, in part because his skillset was so well-compensated in arbitration relative to how good he actually was as a complete player.
 

DJnVa

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I know this isn't the topic of the thread, but people keep saying this and it keeps being 100% wrong. Here's a link to last year's Statcast OAA data. It tells you that, while Devers certainly isn't in the Arenado/Chapman range as a premium defender, he's...fine! He has a surprising amount of range to his left but sometimes struggles on slow grounders he has to charge -- which, it so happens, is what we all see all the time: great plays in the hole, and frustrating errors on slow choppers. We also all see that he has plenty of arm for the position, and that it is a more accurate arm than it was two years ago, when it was a questionable piece of the puzzle.

He's not a bad defender. He's just chubby. And it's strange to see a chubby guy be athletic. But that's what he is.

On Dalbec, I want to see how pitchers adjust to him and whether he can adjust back. That's what sunk Chavis -- he never had a plan once pitchers realized they should just throw high fastballs. But I do think he's our 1B in 2021, which means we'll get to find out before Casas is ready. The fact that Dalbec plays a premium position well means his floor is a little higher than Chavis's, which is a good thing in terms of potential trade value if we wind up with too many corner guys in 2022/2023.
I think that there seems be a whole lot of regression this season, but whether or not that's actual regression, anecdotal not supported by evidence, or simply something that can be chalked up to the general fucked-upedness of 2020 is up for debate.
 

A Bad Man

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Need more PAs, I'd say, as pitchers get a book on him. Still exciting to see the power. We'll have more of a picture by season's end.
 

shaggydog2000

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He looks just like the scouting report said he would. Lots of power, lots of K's, and low batting average. The home runs are great, but he is so far beyond the isolated power he had as a minor leaguer right now that we can't expect him to keep that up. The K rate is coming down, but that and his batting average will take some time to stabilize and then we'll know what he is. They only have something like 14 games left, so I don't know if you can get enough info about him to really know what you have this season.
 

JBJ_HOF

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Not sure why people are concerned with batting average. Some players can't make contact but barrel everything they do, take walks and are valuable guys, like Sano, Gallo, Soler, etc. Then there is Chavis on the other end of the spectrum. Speier has long had Dalbec a notch ahead of him for a reason, better plate discipline, better adjustments at each level, more likely to barrel balls, not to mention Chavis has no position and might not even be long for MLB. Guy has had major opportunities for the taking at 1B and 2B and was completely passed over. His career trajectory is disturbing for a team's first round pick and former top prospect. Dalbec will always swing and miss and strikeout, but he has a far better compact swing and is much more likely to find a way to only 25% Ks.
 

joe dokes

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Not sure why people are concerned with batting average. Some players can't make contact but barrel everything they do, take walks and are valuable guys, like Sano, Gallo, Soler, etc. Then there is Chavis on the other end of the spectrum. Speier has long had Dalbec a notch ahead of him for a reason, better plate discipline, better adjustments at each level, more likely to barrel balls, not to mention Chavis has no position and might not even be long for MLB. Guy has had major opportunities for the taking at 1B and 2B and was completely passed over. His career trajectory is disturbing for a team's first round pick and former top prospect. Dalbec will always swing and miss and strikeout, but he has a far better compact swing and is much more likely to find a way to only 25% Ks.
Just before his HR in the 2nd game, Verducci on FS1 mentioned that Dalbec's been hiting offspeed stuff and missing fastballs, an unusual profile for a rookie. Then he crushed a curve. I'm no expert, but unless its strictly a bat speed issue, I'd think the ability to hit breaking stuff bodes well for the future.
 

RoDaddy

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Not sure why people are concerned with batting average. Some players can't make contact but barrel everything they do, take walks and are valuable guys, like Sano, Gallo, Soler, etc. Then there is Chavis on the other end of the spectrum. Speier has long had Dalbec a notch ahead of him for a reason, better plate discipline, better adjustments at each level, more likely to barrel balls, not to mention Chavis has no position and might not even be long for MLB. Guy has had major opportunities for the taking at 1B and 2B and was completely passed over. His career trajectory is disturbing for a team's first round pick and former top prospect. Dalbec will always swing and miss and strikeout, but he has a far better compact swing and is much more likely to find a way to only 25% Ks.
Yeah - to me, Dalbec's impressive OBPs to date are his saving grace if this translates to a reasonable extent to the bigs
 

DJnVa

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Just before his HR in the 2nd game, Verducci on FS1 mentioned that Dalbec's been hiting offspeed stuff and missing fastballs, an unusual profile for a rookie. Then he crushed a curve. I'm no expert, but unless its strictly a bat speed issue, I'd think the ability to hit breaking stuff bodes well for the future.
Yeah--based on this he's murdering curve balls. The opposite on sliders and change-ups.

 
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Just before his HR in the 2nd game, Verducci on FS1 mentioned that Dalbec's been hiting offspeed stuff and missing fastballs, an unusual profile for a rookie. Then he crushed a curve. I'm no expert, but unless its strictly a bat speed issue, I'd think the ability to hit breaking stuff bodes well for the future.
To my eye, it looks like he’s worried about getting beat on off-speed stuff (lots of those Ks coming on such), which is making him late on fastballs.
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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Not sure why people are concerned with batting average. Some players can't make contact but barrel everything they do, take walks and are valuable guys, like Sano, Gallo, Soler, etc. Then there is Chavis on the other end of the spectrum. Speier has long had Dalbec a notch ahead of him for a reason, better plate discipline, better adjustments at each level, more likely to barrel balls, not to mention Chavis has no position and might not even be long for MLB. Guy has had major opportunities for the taking at 1B and 2B and was completely passed over. His career trajectory is disturbing for a team's first round pick and former top prospect. Dalbec will always swing and miss and strikeout, but he has a far better compact swing and is much more likely to find a way to only 25% Ks.
It's still pretty early to start writing Chavis off. I suspect that Bloom is grooming him to be a replacement for BROCK HOLT! I'd like to stick with him at 2nd base for an extended period of time there personally. He has some serious holes in his approach at the plate but I don't even think he's played an entire full season yet....
As far as BA goes though... yeah, I don't think anyone on this board is looking for a guy to club .300 any longer (or at least for 25 years now) to see him as valuable. That said... there's definitely a line in which even a combination of high walk rate and slugging without putting the ball in play will result in a less than replacement level player. Not sure what that is... but a combined line of .185/.300/.450 is just okay.....
I also fear that a player with poor bat skills ( as expressed in BA) will eventually be exposed and the OBP skills will start to deteriorate as pitchers start to recognize their weak bat skills (can't hit HR's on the inner lower corner, for example... and also unable to poke opposite field doubles or singles or just fight enough pitches off until the pitcher makes a mistake
 

nvalvo

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It's still pretty early to start writing Chavis off. I suspect that Bloom is grooming him to be a replacement for BROCK HOLT! I'd like to stick with him at 2nd base for an extended period of time there personally. He has some serious holes in his approach at the plate but I don't even think he's played an entire full season yet....
As far as BA goes though... yeah, I don't think anyone on this board is looking for a guy to club .300 any longer (or at least for 25 years now) to see him as valuable. That said... there's definitely a line in which even a combination of high walk rate and slugging without putting the ball in play will result in a less than replacement level player. Not sure what that is... but a combined line of .185/.300/.450 is just okay.....
I also fear that a player with poor bat skills ( as expressed in BA) will eventually be exposed and the OBP skills will start to deteriorate as pitchers start to recognize their weak bat skills (can't hit HR's on the inner lower corner, for example... and also unable to poke opposite field doubles or singles or just fight enough pitches off until the pitcher makes a mistake
This post would make more sense to me if Chavis had actually shown the high walk rate you propose he has. He's striking out eight times for every walk. Basically, he had a great first two or three weeks in 2019, and has been pretty terrible ever since. Notably, he's had an OBP around .280, and while the power is real, it's not enough to make the rest of the package valuable.

Chavis has now been worth -0.8 WAR for his career. I don't expect him to reach arbitration in MLB.
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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This post would make more sense to me if Chavis had actually shown the high walk rate you propose he has. He's striking out eight times for every walk. Basically, he had a great first two or three weeks in 2019, and has been pretty terrible ever since. Notably, he's had an OBP around .280, and while the power is real, it's not enough to make the rest of the package valuable.

Chavis has now been worth -0.8 WAR for his career. I don't expect him to reach arbitration in MLB.
Probably I was unclear. I was talking about both Chavis and Dalbec.
The first paragraph was regarding Chavis.
The second two are more pertaining to Dalbec. Yeah.... Chavis's OBP is garbage. Malbec's is good but his BA worries
 

grimshaw

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It's still pretty early to start writing Chavis off. I suspect that Bloom is grooming him to be a replacement for BROCK HOLT! I'd like to stick with him at 2nd base for an extended period of time there personally.
I think he's more in "Where would he suck less?" mode than having any illusion of Chavis evolving into Holt's skill set. I don't think they would have taken a flyer on Munoz otherwise.

I'm willing to be patient with him a little while longer given the circumstances but I see this as more of a Sam Travis experiment where they tried increasing his flexibility because the bat just wasn't good enough for the position he played.
 

nvalvo

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Probably I was unclear. I was talking about both Chavis and Dalbec.
The first paragraph was regarding Chavis.
The second two are more pertaining to Dalbec. Yeah.... Chavis's OBP is garbage. Malbec's is good but his BA worries
Ahh, that makes more sense. Chavis really needs to show something, and soon, or I'm not sure he's going to be worth a 40-man spot this winter.

And Malbec as a nickname/typo is pretty funny.
 

SouthernBoSox

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Every time he swings I know it looks like someone but I haven’t been able to place it until now....

It’s Aaron Judge. It’s a huge man with a really short simple swing the the ball just explodes off his bat, especially the other way.
 

nattysez

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Tonight he tied the record for most HR (6) in an AL player's first 10 games. Unclear if he also set the record for most Ks (18 as of now) over that span.
 

Rasputin

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If I mary summarize:

Dalbec has earned a legit chance to win the starting job next year, but we damn well better have another option.
 

brandonchristensen

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Tonight he tied the record for most HR (6) in an AL player's first 10 games. Unclear if he also set the record for most Ks (18 as of now) over that span.
What did Devers do in 17? Or Chavis last year? Devers especially was wacky with his homers out of the gate, but I guess not quite what Dalbec is doing.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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What did Devers do in 17? Or Chavis last year? Devers especially was wacky with his homers out of the gate, but I guess not quite what Dalbec is doing.
Devers in his first 10 games hit 3 HR and struck out 11 times (took him 16 games to get to six HR with two in that 16th game).
Chavis in his first 10 games hit 3 HR and struck out 10 times (took him 14 games to get to six HR with two in that 14th game).
 

oumbi

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If you would like to learn more about our newest binkie, here is the Bobby Dalbec thread from SoxProspects.


It started in August, 2016 and is 13 pages. The last two pages are devoted to him in the majors. There is even an Eric Van sighting.

"Dalbec is the first in MLB history to have a 5-game streak in his first 10 MLB games."
 

Humphrey

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Tough to beat the homer production the Sox have gotten from first base (I think all but one of Moreland, Dalbec and Chavis' homers have come while they were playing first).

16
 

DJnVa

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NESN needs an editor:

For those keeping track at home, that’s 10 home runs in six games for Dalbec. And he’s making history while doing so.
 

brandonchristensen

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Devers in his first 10 games hit 3 HR and struck out 11 times (took him 16 games to get to six HR with two in that 16th game).
Chavis in his first 10 games hit 3 HR and struck out 10 times (took him 14 games to get to six HR with two in that 14th game).
Thank you. I’m terrible at finding specific info!

Man Dalbec is crazy.
 

Cesar Crespo

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Tonight he tied the record for most HR (6) in an AL player's first 10 games. Unclear if he also set the record for most Ks (18 as of now) over that span.
Yoan Moncada immediately came to mind with the strike outs. In his first 8 games, he had 20 PA and 12 strike outs. If you go into the following season, it becomes 10 games, 27 PA, 12 strike outs.

Moncada struck on in 9 straight PA in 2016 before the Sox stopped playing him.

Dalbec is at 39 PA/19 K thru 10. Thru 40 PA, Moncada was at 17k.


Re Dalbec/Chavis: It's worth noting Chavis was 2 years younger at each level. In Dalbec's favor, his 2019 AA performance is a lot better than it looks. The average line in the EL that year was .238/.311/.366, 23.0% K%, 8.6% BB%. Dalbec was at .234/.371/.454, 25.1% K%, 15.5% BB%.

There was also talk that as Dalbec moved up, some of his walks would turn into strike outs. That would be worrisome given his batting average.

I'm also not a scout and my eyes suck, but I thought Dalbec was better at 3b in Portland than Devers was. Of course that was 3 years ago and Devers was 20 years old. I was never impressed with Chavis defensively and thought if he stuck anywhere, it would be 2b or LF. I was impressed with him as a hitter and thought he made some serious progress in the minors in plate discipline but it hasn't translated.
 

Cesar Crespo

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It's also 5 straight games with a HR for Dalbec. I think the record is still 8 held by Mattingly, Griffey Jr and someone else named Long. Ron?

edit: Dale Long.
 

DJnVa

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What was historic about it?
Well, if you equate "historic" with first ever you have things such as:

First Sox rookie to HR in 4 straight games.
First Sox rookie to HR in 5 straight games.
First Sox player with 6 HR in first 10 games with team.
First rookie in modern era to have 5 game HR streak in first 10 games of career.

If you think "historic" means rarely then you can add:

Only 5th player ever to have 6 HRs in first 10 career games.
 

Papelbon's Poutine

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Well, if you equate "historic" with first ever you have things such as:

First Sox rookie to HR in 4 straight games.
First Sox rookie to HR in 5 straight games.
First Sox player with 6 HR in first 10 games with team.
First rookie in modern era to have 5 game HR streak in first 10 games of career.

If you think "historic" means rarely then you can add:

Only 5th player ever to have 6 HRs in first 10 career games.
Cool. I wasn't questioning whether it was or not worthy of "historic", it's been busy week so I figured I missed something; just curious how the term was being applied. Guess silver linings are all that's left this year.
 

nvalvo

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Yoan Moncada immediately came to mind with the strike outs. In his first 8 games, he had 20 PA and 12 strike outs. If you go into the following season, it becomes 10 games, 27 PA, 12 strike outs.

Moncada struck on in 9 straight PA in 2016 before the Sox stopped playing him.

Dalbec is at 39 PA/19 K thru 10. Thru 40 PA, Moncada was at 17k.


Re Dalbec/Chavis: It's worth noting Chavis was 2 years younger at each level. In Dalbec's favor, his 2019 AA performance is a lot better than it looks. The average line in the EL that year was .238/.311/.366, 23.0% K%, 8.6% BB%. Dalbec was at .234/.371/.454, 25.1% K%, 15.5% BB%.

There was also talk that as Dalbec moved up, some of his walks would turn into strike outs. That would be worrisome given his batting average.

I'm also not a scout and my eyes suck, but I thought Dalbec was better at 3b in Portland than Devers was. Of course that was 3 years ago and Devers was 20 years old. I was never impressed with Chavis defensively and thought if he stuck anywhere, it would be 2b or LF. I was impressed with him as a hitter and thought he made some serious progress in the minors in plate discipline but it hasn't translated.
The case for Dalbec, which I've often been a bit skeptical of, rests on the idea that he was primarily a pitcher in the NCAA, and so he is less advanced as a hitter than the typical player out of a top four-year college program.

He was a reliever/IF as a freshman, a closer/IF as a sophomore, and the ace SP/IF as a junior, when his team reached the CWS — where he took the loss in the decisive game.

The Sox preferred him as a hitter, and here we are. I guess we'll see.
 

Koufax

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Hmmm. They sure could use a pitcher.
 

DJnVa

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The case for Dalbec, which I've often been a bit skeptical of, rests on the idea that he was primarily a pitcher in the NCAA, and so he is less advanced as a hitter than the typical player out of a top four-year college program.

He was a reliever/IF as a freshman, a closer/IF as a sophomore, and the ace SP/IF as a junior, when his team reached the CWS — where he took the loss in the decisive game.

The Sox preferred him as a hitter, and here we are. I guess we'll see.
Well, that's true, but let's not undersell how much he hit in college. Over his final 2 college years he had 444 ABs. Alex Bregman had 504. Also, he only had 8 starts his final year in college.

So, your overarching point (or the point of the idea you're referencing) might be correct, but he still faced plenty of top level NCAA arms. He probably had a bit less cage time though.
 

nvalvo

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Well, that's true, but let's not undersell how much he hit in college. Over his final 2 college years he had 444 ABs. Alex Bregman had 504. Also, he only had 8 starts his final year in college.

So, your overarching point (or the point of the idea you're referencing) might be correct, but he still faced plenty of top level NCAA arms. He probably had a bit less cage time though.
Agreed! That’s precisely why I’m a bit skeptical of that narrative.
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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Ahh, that makes more sense. Chavis really needs to show something, and soon, or I'm not sure he's going to be worth a 40-man spot this winter.

And Malbec as a nickname/typo is pretty funny.
I did see it..... thought it was too good to correct
 

Sox Puppet

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After today's golden sombrero, Dalbec now has 30 K's in 54 AB.

I don't see this going very well. He's making Joey Gallo look like Wade Boggs.