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Old 05-13-2012, 12:36 PM
 
Location: Sacramento
13,784 posts, read 23,809,056 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by neil0311 View Post
I know I'm not the majority, but I have never been a fan of the formulaic setup/closer combo, which often ignores how the stater is throwing and other aspects of the game. Maybe I'm just old, but I prefer the old school view that allows the manager to bring in his bullpen as needed and leave the starter in for as long as the pitcher is effective.

I'm not a fan of arbitrary pitch count limits either, and would much rather see the manager and pitcher tailor the use of a starter to their personal limits and the game situation. Pulling an effective starter just because he's pitched 100 or 110 innings is ridiculous in my opinion. No wonder bullpens are so much more overworked today.

Statistics are useful as a means of comparison for certain things, but this reliance and worship of statistics is ruining the game.
I agree with you, there are way too many stats out there that often add no meaningful insights into the game.

The best GM's and managers are the one's who understand that a lot of the stats are junk, and just know what key items to analyze for specific players.
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Old 05-13-2012, 01:04 PM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NewToCA View Post
I agree with you, there are way too many stats out there that often add no meaningful insights into the game.

.
Which are the stats which you find excessive and devoid of meaning? Which are the stats which you believe avoid this problem and are useful?
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Old 05-13-2012, 02:39 PM
 
Location: Sacramento
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grandstander View Post
Which are the stats which you find excessive and devoid of meaning? Which are the stats which you believe avoid this problem and are useful?
We've been through this discussion before, I'm not going through it again. I find that much of the stuff that existed before the past couple of decades provided sufficient insights.

Before all this new stuff, we were still able to determine who was a good player and who wasn't. We were even able to tell when someone had a year that they probably wouldn't be able to replicate, like Davey Johnson's 1973 year in Atlanta or Don Demeter's 1962 year in Philly.
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Old 05-13-2012, 05:27 PM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
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NewToCA

Quote:
We've been through this discussion before, I'm not going through it again.
You reraised the issue with your comment, so I think it is reasonable that if you are going to tell us that some stats are useless and without meaning, you at least identify which stats you reference and why they lack utility. Otherwise, what has anyone here learned?


Quote:
Before all this new stuff, we were still able to determine who was a good player and who wasn't. We were even able to tell when someone had a year that they probably wouldn't be able to replicate, like Davey Johnson's 1973 year in Atlanta or Don Demeter's 1962 year in Philly.
Now we are able to make better determinations, ones which have broken through the rut of conventional wisdom, founds ways to overcome environmental bias, and be much better armed to make distinctions far finer than Davey Johnson in 1973 and Davey Johnson in any other year.

I suspect that your real complaint here is that you have lacked the interest to invest the time needed to understand what the new stats mean and grasp how much better they are than what came before in terms of identifying true value. So instead you simply dismiss them, and that explains your unwillingness to engage in a specific conversation about the specific stats you have called meaningless. Such a conversation would reveal that you actually do not know much about that which you are condemning.

The way to eradicate those suspicions would be to present your specific complaints about specific stats...what is wrong with it? Is it attempting to claim that it proves something it actually does not? Is there a superior calculation of which you are aware for arriving at the answer to a question that the stat you don't like was designed to answer?
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Old 05-13-2012, 09:20 PM
 
Location: Sacramento
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grandstander View Post
NewToCA



You reraised the issue with your comment, so I think it is reasonable that if you are going to tell us that some stats are useless and without meaning, you at least identify which stats you reference and why they lack utility. Otherwise, what has anyone here learned?



Now we are able to make better determinations, ones which have broken through the rut of conventional wisdom, founds ways to overcome environmental bias, and be much better armed to make distinctions far finer than Davey Johnson in 1973 and Davey Johnson in any other year.

I suspect that your real complaint here is that you have lacked the interest to invest the time needed to understand what the new stats mean and grasp how much better they are than what came before in terms of identifying true value. So instead you simply dismiss them, and that explains your unwillingness to engage in a specific conversation about the specific stats you have called meaningless. Such a conversation would reveal that you actually do not know much about that which you are condemning.

The way to eradicate those suspicions would be to present your specific complaints about specific stats...what is wrong with it? Is it attempting to claim that it proves something it actually does not? Is there a superior calculation of which you are aware for arriving at the answer to a question that the stat you don't like was designed to answer?
Nah, you have that entirely wrong, I was reading James when his first stuff came out around 1980 and followed the stats revolution for about 25 years. Bought all of the stuff discussing it, and what it meant.

And after all that analysis, I found that it provided few additional insights to what I had known before the "revolution". The ability to predict future performance wasn't enhanced much at all. Rather than drown in the depths of debating the merits of multiple stats, I'd offer up that you can simply take the sum of batting average, on base percentage and slugging average for every qualifying batter and average it out for a three year period, and come up with a rank order of the quality of hitters. You also can get a good idea of what to expect this coming season, with a slight adjustment for weighting towards more recent performances and age of the player.

Just that simple computation will give you great accuracy in how good players should hit.

If you want to analyze fielding, the old standby of fielding chances and errors still is a half decent measure. Some of the new stuff adds to the knowledge, but frankly it doesn't make a big difference for ranking most players overall.

Anyhow, that pretty much will give you who is who in terms of position players.

Pitching is different, it is all over the map. Recent past performance is your best bet, with an adjustment for considering if the guy has better or worse defense behind him this year. But it often varies significantly for all but the best pitchers, and even some of those have major swings in performance.

And all of this was known in 1970.

Last edited by NewToCA; 05-13-2012 at 10:02 PM..
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Old 05-16-2012, 05:52 AM
 
Location: Albuquerque, NM
13,293 posts, read 12,795,417 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NewToCA View Post
And after all that analysis, I found that it provided few additional insights to what I had known before the "revolution". The ability to predict future performance wasn't enhanced much at all. Rather than drown in the depths of debating the merits of multiple stats, I'd offer up that you can simply take the sum of batting average, on base percentage and slugging average for every qualifying batter and average it out for a three year period, and come up with a rank order of the quality of hitters. You also can get a good idea of what to expect this coming season, with a slight adjustment for weighting towards more recent performances and age of the player.

Just that simple computation will give you great accuracy in how good players should hit.
Thats fine. If you don't care about predicting performance of anyone who's been in the league less than three years.

Take Detroit Tigers fans though. Before the 2010 season they traded away Curtis Granderson for Austin Jackson. Jackson had a fine 2010 and the casual fan might have thought Jackson was destined for greatness after a .293/.345/.400 season.

A fan with a casual understanding of batted ball types, BABIP, and K% could make a pretty accurate prediction of Jackson's decline.
Quote:
Jackson was coming off of a Rookie of the Year season with the Tigers.

Jackson’s 2011 BABIP looked higher than he’d be able to sustain. Jackson had hit line drives in 24% of the time in 2011. I thought he’d be closer to 20% line drives and a BABIP of .340.

I was also concerned about his strikeout rate. I thought he would walk a bit more ( 7.5%) in 2012 while striking out a bit less (26%).

Overall, I predicted a .260/.320/.370 line in 2012 for Jackson.

What’d he do?
He hit .250/.317/.374. His BABIP was .340 with a line drive rate of 16%. He increased his walk rate to 8.4% while his strikeouts also increased to 27%.
Or how about a Yankee fan who thought that Ramiro Pena was the next Ozzie Smith? He'd still be waiting for Pena to get 3 years worth of playing time to realize that he was wrong while those with a better understanding of the stats could easily predict that Pena wasn't a major league quality player.

Quote:
If you want to analyze fielding, the old standby of fielding chances and errors still is a half decent measure. Some of the new stuff adds to the knowledge, but frankly it doesn't make a big difference for ranking most players overall.
Citation needed

Quote:
Anyhow, that pretty much will give you who is who in terms of position players.
The biggest advantage of saber stats, for me, is the ability to analyze a complete player.

Sure, I could figure out that a .300/.350/.450 hitter is better than a .280/.330/.400 hitter. And I could figure out that a good fielding short stop is a better defensive option than a poor fielding first baseman.

What I couldn't figure out is if a .280/.330/.400 hitting good-fielding shortstop was worth more than a .300/.350/.450 hitting poor fielding first baseman.

As the newer stats have converted everything to runs, these kinds of comparisons are possible.
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:02 AM
 
Location: Sacramento
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Your example of Austin Jackson is useful in discussing why I view the "new wave" stats as not adding much to player projections.

If you turn the clock back to before James started the stats analysis track, Jackson's rookie year looks like the higher end of his performance range. What a fan who doesn't use advanced stats would see is that over a period of four full minor league seasons he shows little batting improvement. His batting average bounces around a bit, he doesn't show a solid improvement pattern in that area, and his BB/K and AB/BB rates don't improve over the four seasons. When you see that kind of pattern, for him to be an interesting prospect you'd need to show a good ramp up in power stats. Yet in Jackson's case his power numbers were settling in at a pretty modest level.

When I look at Austin Jackson's minor league performance, and his first full season in the majors, what I see is a player who looks like he isn't developing the power to offset a high strikeout rate. So looking at his four year minor league performance and his rookie season, at the very best case he could evolve into a Jacque Jones or Ron LeFlore type of hitter, but likely won't have Jones power or LeFlore's stolen base numbers. Maybe Roberto Kelly would be the most accurate long term comp, which isn't much of a hitter for the OF.

Now it is possible that he would improve his contact and cut down on his strikeouts and become a better hitter, but looking at his rookie season BB/K rates and comparing them to what he previously did in the minors, maintaining this performance level looked pretty doubtful even without the use of advanced stats.

Likewise a reading of Ramiro Pena's minor league performance clearly indicates a guy who will struggle to be a major league hitter. If he is a great fielder, he likely bounces around from team to team as a end of the roster reserve. His batting average in five minor league seasons shows little progression from a low starting point, and his only decent batting year was a repeat of the same level. Most players show great improvement if repeating the same level, but unless they contine the growth at the next level, which Pena clearly didn't, it indicates a marginal guy.

Last edited by NewToCA; 05-16-2012 at 09:33 AM..
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:42 AM
 
Location: Brooklyn
40,056 posts, read 30,529,289 times
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Once upon a time--and it wasn't that long ago--baseball teams had starters and relievers. This inspires me to think that no, it's not absolutely necessary to have a specifically designated 'closer.' It should be the case that any relief pitcher on the roster...or, for that matter, ANY pitcher on the roster, could be used in the ninth inning.
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Old 05-16-2012, 11:33 AM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
40,950 posts, read 18,569,815 times
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How many marbles are in this jar?

NewToCA's Methodology:
Well, as I recall I once saw a jar in a store about the same size and it was filled with Skittles and Skittles are, oh, I don't know, about half the size of marbles and it looked to me like there was around a couple of thousand Skittles in that jar, so I'm going to say that there are around 1000 marbles.

Sabermetric Methodology: We Could...
A) Measure the volume of the jar and the size of one marble, divide the first figure by the second
B) Weigh the jar when empty, weigh one marble, weigh the jar when full of marbles, subtract the weight of the jar and divide that figure by the weight of one marble.
C) Open the jar and count the marbles.

Your error, NewtoCa, is in believing that these are equal methodologies with one as likely to produce an accurate answer as the other.
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Old 05-16-2012, 11:46 AM
 
Location: NJ
17,579 posts, read 39,770,900 times
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I think psychology has something to do with it. I can certainly understand that pitching in the 9th has more pressure. Any other inning you know your team still has some time to make up for mistakes. And not every player is going to handle pressure the same.
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