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rating: 7.532018 salary: $515 http://www.rangersfanproshop.com/authen ... ore-jersey ,4002018 performance: 580 PA, .260/.332/.437 (104 wRC+), 14 HR, 52 XBH, 6 SB, 7 DRS at 2B2019 status: $1 million base salary + $2 million signing bonus; signed through 2024It was sort of a confusing year for Ketel Marte. All-in-all, he had a bit of a breakout, both offensively and defensively, yet the overall fan opinion of him seemed to have been considerably worse than last year, as seen by the drop in rating from 7.53 last year to 6.75 this year. It starts with the team locking down Marte to a 5 year extension valued at $24 million. This deal is locked up through 2022 - the years in which the team already had full control over Marte - and then gives the team two club options for his first two years of free agency at $10 million and $12 million, respectively. If both options are exercised, the contract will end up being 7 years and $46 million and allowing Ketel Marte to enter free agency in his age 31 season. If Marte continues improving in the ways we’ve seen in his first two seasons in the desert, his contract will be a massive bargain. Yet, despite the 2.5 fWAR (3.3 bWAR) season from Marte, why did his rating drop? Probably due to a mixture high expectations and an incredibly slow start to the year. The extension and the hype around Marte made it clear that Marte was being viewed as a young star in the making. So when Marte busted out of the 2018 gates with a 54 wRC+ in April and a 58 wRC+ in May, fans seemed to be really concerned about that extension that Marte signed, as well as probably being a bit disappointed in the team’s performance especially after the miserable May. But this really is A Tale of Two Martes:Through May 31st: .216/.273/.309 (56 wRC+)May 31st - Sept 30th: .285/.365/.512 (132 wRC+)That second Marte is probably the one we were all expecting this year. What’s amazing is that those second set of numbers don’t have any major red flags when it comes to regression: 10.8% BB%, 14.0% K%, .227 ISO, .304 BABIP. But it comes to one thing - is the power for real? Marte has consistently shown the ability to maintain high contact rates to sustain the low K% and after an 11.4% BB% in 2017, the 10.8% BB% in the second half of last year doesn’t seem so unrealistic. Nor does the .304 BABIP (career .302 BABIP). But what about that ISO? .227 is a lot higher than anything he’s shown in his career. However, Marte has shown some signs that the power is legitimate. For starters, he had the single-highest exit velocity for any Diamondbacks batted ball this season. Among the 20 hardest-hit Diamondbacks batted balls this season, Marte had 8 of them, all of which measured over 112 MPH. Here are some of his longest dingers on the season:You can’t fake that kind of power. That is some immense raw power. But let’s not just look at the Dbacks. Where does he rank among MLB second basemen?5 of the 11-hardest hit balls by second basemen this year were by Ketel Marte. At this point, we might be encroaching the territory that Ketel Marte has the highest raw power among all MLB second basemen. He would have topped the SS list, too. This has been noted by some of us in the Snake Pit, as Jack Sommers and I both wrote about Marte’s power breakout this year: Ketel Marte is Having a Breakout, But He’s Not Fully There YetKetel Marte’s breakout keeps moving forwardBoth articles summarize the same things. Marte is making huge strides this year, particularly in his power, but he still has two concerns going forward: being consistent and his platoon splits. We’ll tackle the consistency first. Despite leading MLB 2B in hardest-hit balls, he was only 13th in average exit velocity. Part of that is because of the platoon splits (see below), but the other part was his inconsistency, specifically in flyballs vs. groundballs. Marte needs to hit flyballs to harness his power. When he’s hitting flyballs, he’s hitting them hard and they turn into extra base hits. Lots of extra base hits, at that. Take a look at this: This is a rolling 15 game average of Marte’s FB% and wRC+ for 2018. Notice how closely aligned that wRC+ is to FB%. It’s not a direct correlation http://www.rangersfanproshop.com/authen ... ore-jersey , but it is strong and it is vital to Marte’s success going forward. And again, look at how low the FB% was in the first two months of the season - and how it steadily stayed higher for the rest of the season. These are the kind of improvements you want to see in a young player and something to look out for in the following season as Marte continues his development. The other issue, of course, are the platoon splits. Marte has shown incredible power as a right-handed hitters but not nearly as much as a lefty. Notice anything about the homers up above? All right-handed.Here are his 2018 ISOs by handedness: Lefty: .127Righty: .263And his average exit velocity by handedness: Lefty: 87.1 MPHRighty: 91.1 MPHAgain, we’re back to A Tale of Two Martes. This is a much bigger concern as it really limits Marte’s ceiling if he can’t figure out the power from the left side of the plate. What complicates this matter is that prior to 2018, Marte was a better left-handed hitter than right-handed hitter, due to having superior contact skills from the left side. But now that he’s tapping into this immense raw power from the right-hand side, the equation has shifted. This begs two questions: Can Marte harness this raw power from the left hand side of the plate? If not, can and should Marte switch to being a permanent right-handed hitter?I don’t think there is anyway that I can attempt to answer those questions. I would bet a large sum of money that the Diamondbacks coaching staff is working hard to continue developing Marte. He is young and incredibly athletic, two factors that help him out in this, and it will be interested to see what comes of it. Marte’s ceiling will be limited if he can’t improve from the left side of the plate (or switch to righty-only). Now, he could still be a very good player: the current iteration of Marte had a ~130 wRC+ after June 1st last season and that version of Marte is likely to be somewhat sustainable. Hitting like that with his great defense is still a great player: 3-4 WAR and a fringe all-star. But if he taps into that power from both sides of the plate, you’re looking at the possibility of one of the best middle infielders in the game. I’ve gotten a long ways without really writing anything about the season or Marte’s defense, but this is really the story of Marte this year. Marte’s defense was very good: he was above average at both SS and 2B this season. His 7 DRS at 2B was 6th-best among MLB 2B. But this season was really all about his hitting, simultaneously breaking out and having struggles with inconsistency and handedness at the same time. A Tale of Two Martes. The 2019 outlook for Ketel Marte is pretty simple. He’s going to be an everyday player somewhere, whether it’s at 2B, SS, or CF is still yet to be determine. I would expect above average defense at SS or 2B and he’d probably be a good CF, too (See: Chris Owings). But the real 2019 outlook for Marte is going to come down to the bat. We saw the raw power start to emerge at the end of 2017; Marte worked out hard in the offseason and had a semi-breakout in power in 2018. Marte has been known to workout hard. How will that manifest in 2019? Cruise though another 100 losses, or depress the accelerator?"Welcome to the fifth installment of the South Side Sox White Sox Offseason Plan Project. You’ve already had your appetites whetted with the invitation to crowdsource the GM role in the SB Nation offseason simulation, so hopefully the jingle bells already are jangling with ideas to improve the White Sox in 2019.Last season, the bulk of SSS seemed to claim defeat in the face of a long and dreary offseason. Still in the developing stages of rebuilding, it was a given not much would happen last winter, and with just 34 plans linked to the 2017-18 offseason project tab, perhaps Rick Hahn did too good a job of convincing us that offseason activity was DOA. 2014: >40 plans2015: 91 plans2016: 108 plans2017: 34 plansWith scant payroll commitments to speak of, and some elements of the rebuild being set into motion, for better or worse (Michael Kopech’s call-up and injury, Eloy Jim茅nez’s “additional defensive reps,” Reynaldo L贸pez’s emergence, Lucas Giolito/Carson Fulmer pooping the bed, Luis Robert’s chronic injuries ...), big questions surround this offseason.All indications are that the White Sox, convinced on the heels of a 100-loss season that their window has been delayed (if not nailed shut), will err on the side of modest spending this winter.But you don’t have to choose that route. There are blue chips available in free agency, hot corner options in abundance, and rotation help out there for the signing or trading.So Curtis Granderson Jersey , if you’re new to this, welcome, and if you’re not, welcome back!First, you have to take care of some White Sox housekeeping: decisions on how to approach arbitration and White Sox options. From there, the entire league is at your disposal, as you sign free agents and orchestrate trades with other teams. Keep in mind, the SSS hive mind will keep you honest regarding the logic of your trades. so tip the balance too heavily in the White Sox’s favor at your own risk. How do I write a FanPost?Anyone who is a registered member of SSS can write a FanPost:Be sure you’re logged inCopy the template belowClick “FanPosts” at the top of this pageClick “New FanPost” on the FanPosts pagePaste the template copy in the text editorWrite up a brilliant and/or entertaining planHere’s a good example of a 2017 offseason planReference MaterialCot’s Baseball Contracts has summarized the White Sox’s 2019 salary commitments in handy spreadsheet form, as well as traditional bullet-point form. Chicago’s payroll heading into free agency and the winter meetings, given scant contracted players and presuming all arbitration-eligible players are retained, is just a shade more than $60 million, including the $2 million that went toward buying James Shields out of his contract.To accommodate a top-heavy free agent class and pay more than lip service to cases some of you may make to spend dough and force open the window of contention, let’s set a payroll cap of double that, at $120 million. Truth be told, you can spend whatever you want if you justify it, but (see above), the hive mind here will not treat your $200 million White Sox payroll generously.MLB Trade Rumors exhaustively lists the 2018 MLB free agents, along with each player’s age, a key factor in deciding terms of your free agent offer. Note which players have options and be smart about whether a team, player, or team/player option will be exercised, thereby taking the player off the market. Everything make sense? OK then, let’s get started!- - - - - - - - - - - - - - -鉁傦笍 [cut along the perforated line] 鉁傦笍 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - [Insert your name]’s Offseason PlanIntroductionFeel free to summarize your plan here, outline your overall strategy, vent about the 2018 White Sox ... whatever will help us understand who you are and where you are coming from with your offseason plan. You are also free to delete the Introduction, as nobody told you there would be an essay portion of this test.Arbitration-eligible (with projected salaries from MLBTR):Write "tender" or "non-tender" after each of the following names, and explain any particularly tough choices. Remember that arb-eligible players can be signed to contract extensions, or be traded, before or after tendering a contract. Jos茅 Abreu – $16 millionAvisa铆l Garc铆a – $8 millionYolmer S谩nchez – $4.7 millionCarlos Rod贸n – $3.7 millionMatt Davidson – $2.4 millionLeury Garc铆a – $1.9 millionImpending Free AgentsRe-sign, cut loose, or extend a qualifying offer ($17.9 million)? (Explain any tough or complicated calls.)Miguel Gonz谩lez (2018 salary: $4.75 million)Hector Santiago (2018 salary: $2 million)Free agents Using the list of free agents, tell us who you’d sign, keeping in mind our salary cap, and good, old-fashioned logic. Include your maximum offer (total years, total salary). Explain your choice at least briefly Jaime Garcia Jersey , even in the case of the most obvious, superstar signs.There is no minimum or maximum number of free agent deals.For illustrative purposes, here’s an idea that by no means you should implement:Adam LaRoche (two years, $20 million). He’s back from Asia, bored on the farm, and ready to test clubhouse contentment in the new Ricky Renteria regime. Let’s tear down, before we’ve built back up!TradesTrades must make sense for both the White Sox and their trading partner. Explain your rationale, at least briefly. There is no minimum or maximum number for trades you may suggest. Again, an example that should not be implemented under any circumstances:Eloy Jim茅nez and Dylan Cease to the Chicago Cubs for Jose Quintana. Jim茅nez needs work in the outfield, and may not even make the majors in 2019. Besides, the White Sox owe Q dozens of wins for all those “quality start/no-decision” outings.SummaryIt’s not a requirement, but in the end, it makes sense to run out your starting lineup/rotation/bullpen, or at least your 25-man roster.For those of you who think the White Sox can sign either one of the two clear, blue-chip free agents, I’m curious — if you haven’t explained it already — how you will entice a player who could literally choose any one of 30 teams that he should spend his next five to 10 years on the White Sox, beginning in 2019, of all seasons.Again, no one is requiring you to be an essayist, but the more you can explain and rationalize your choices, the better discussion is generated, and the better your plan will be received. Consider these questions:How do you see position/rotation/bullpen battles shaking out?Which players might not make the Opening Day roster (like, say, a certain megamasher who needs more work on his pop flies), but are reasonable to regard as major components of the 2019 team?How does your offseason fit in the framework of a rebuild, given 100 losses in 2018 and the talent sitting in the prospect pipeline?Is the time right to depress the accelerator, or ease up due to various prospect development delays?There is no “cheating” when it comes to offseason plans. By that, I mean if you see a national writer float an interesting idea or rumor, or if you wish to adopt a idea from someone else’s SSS plan, go on ahead. A good idea is a good idea. It’s polite to cite your source, but hey, the Winter Meetings can be a bloodbath, man.Most of all, have fun. This is for exhibition purposes only. Please, no wagering.