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Archive for August, 2011

Bloops: Rick Ankiel Highlight Reel

31st August 2011

Though he is no longer a pitcher, Rick Ankiel has been making news with his arm once again.  His pinpoint laser throws have frustrated many runners around the league. Blog reader William Tasker has a collection of links to Ankiel throws at his own blog,  "The Flagrant Fan".  Have a look; its a fun watch.

Posted in Uncategorized | 54 Comments »

Most BB Post-1900 Careers Of 1,500 AB Or Less

31st August 2011

Since 1901, of all batters with 1,500 career AB in the majors, or less, who has the most walks?

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Posted in Season Finders | 25 Comments »

13+ Games On Base 3+ Times Within 1st 50 Career Games

31st August 2011

Since 1919, which players had 13+ games within their first 50 career games where they reached base 3 times or more in the contest?

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Posted in Game Finders | 9 Comments »

The New Yankees WAR Pitching Leader

31st August 2011

As long as there has been baseball, there have been attempts to measure player value. And for almost as long as there have been the New York Yankees, much of that value has been found among position players. Never-the-less, several pitchers have stood out during the storied history of the franchise, none more so than the Chairman of the Board, Whitey Ford. Not only did Ford start more games than anybody in Yankees history, he also won the most for the Yankees, both during the regular season and World Series. Modern measures confirm Ford's value as a Yankee and his 55.3 pitching WAR is higher than anyone accumulated for the franchise. Until yesterday, that is. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Season Finders | 90 Comments »

Which game in baseball history would you like to see?

31st August 2011

On another thread, reader DaveZ wrote the following:

"Wouldn't it be cool to be able to go back in time and see the 1911 Ty Cobb play?  Led league in R, RBI, 2B, 3B, SBs, hit .420, spiked numerous opponents.  If I could go back to one baseball era it would be the late teens/early twenties, no doubt."

It got me to wondering--what one game from baseball's past would you like to be able to go back and witness first-hand?

The first thing that sprung to my mind was Game 3 of the 1932 World Series, to see if Babe Ruth really called his shot or not. But I'm sure there are lots of other great choices...let's hear 'em!

Posted in Uncategorized | 156 Comments »

Leading both leagues in RBI and R (or “Why Curtis Granderson is the AL MVP”)

31st August 2011

Following is a fantastic email from reader TheGoof, in his own words. Incidentally, it's not easy to find this out using the Play Index--some manual searching is involved.

I was wondering how unusual it was that Curtis Granderson was leading the league in both runs and RBI. It's not horribly uncommon, as I found, 22 times in the NL, twice in the AA and 25 in the AL (six by Ruth in a 10-year span!).

However, leading both leagues in R and RBI is really rare, especially if you aren't Babe Ruth.

1910 Magee
1911 Cobb
1919 Ruth
1920 Ruth
1921 Ruth
1923 Ruth
1926 Ruth
1928 Ruth
1931 Gehrig
1942 Williams
1947 Mize
1949 Williams
1955 Snider
1956 Mantle
1963 Aaron
1979 Baylor
1998 Sosa
2001 Sosa
2007 Rodriguez

These are famous, historic seasons. Only Magee and Mize surprised me. And I think Cobb was the only one to also lead his league in triples that season.

And, once again, just how good was that Ruth guy? Leading both leagues in R and RBI six times in 10 years? Unreal. I mean, he had to compete with Hornsby and Gehrig and plenty of other greats. As a lifelong Yankee fan, I thought I had some sense, but it wasn't until I read a book about the 1918 Red Sox ("The Year the Red Sox Won the Series," a collection of press clippings) that I really got it. They thought of him like we think of Pujols before he even took to the outfield. And then he hit homers...

Anyway, keep up the good work.

Just one things to add--these days, with so many more players in the league, it's even harder to lead all of MLB in both categories. Granderson's gotta be the MVP.

Posted in Uncategorized | 82 Comments »

Game notes – Tuesday 8/30/2011

31st August 2011

-- Ramon Santiago pinch-ran in the 8th, stayed in the game, and won it for Detroit with a HR in the 10th, his first-ever walk-off shot.

  • It was the 3rd HR this year by a player who also pinch-ran. The others:
Rk Player Date Tm Opp Rslt PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB IBB SO HBP SH SF ROE GDP SB CS WPA RE24 aLI BOP Pos. Summary
1 David Cooper 2011-05-10 TOR BOS W 7-6 2 1 1 1 0 0 1 2 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0.428 1.152 3.240 1 PR 1B
2 Eric Patterson 2011-05-03 SDP PIT W 6-5 3 2 1 2 0 0 1 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.329 2.442 1.987 2 PR 2B
Provided by View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 8/31/2011.

-- Roy Halladay came into this game with no RBI in 58 ABs this year, then hit a 3-run double. He got his 16th win (7 IP, 0 runs, 2 hits), snapping a 2-start winless "streak."

  • The last time Halladay went 3 straight starts without a win was June 10-20 of last year.

-- How often do you see a line like CC Sabathia put up tonight in New York's 5-2 win? -- 6 IP, 10 Ks, 10 hits (with a HR and 2 doubles), 2 walks. The last game of 6 IP or less with double-figures in both Ks and hits was in 2007, by Brandon Webb. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Uncategorized | 23 Comments »

Is Quality Starts a useful stat? (not really)

30th August 2011

A Quality Start is an official stat assigned to a starting pitcher who goes at least 6 innings while giving up no more than 3 earned runs. Let's take a look at this stat in a bit more detail to see if it's all that useful.

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Posted in Uncategorized | 126 Comments »

Recap Lite: Monday 8/29/2011

30th August 2011

-- Tim Lincecum's streak of 9 straight starts with at least 6 IP and no more than 2 runs allowed dissolved in an unprecedented fashion. In his 150th career start, Lincecum allowed the Cubs 5 runs on 3 HRs in 6+ IP -- the first time he's ever yielded more than 2 dingers.

  • The Giants lost, 7-0, collecting 2 hits, just 1 from the starting lineup. They've lost 3 of 5 at home to the worst teams in the league, and are 5 games behind the streaking D-backs, who won their 6th straight behind Daniel Hudson.

-- Clayton Kershaw went the distance for his 17th win; he's the first Dodger to reach that mark since Chan Ho Park in 2000. Kershaw also leapfrogged Lincecum for #2 in the NL ERA chase at 2.45. (Seems about time for a dedicated blog post....)

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Uncategorized | 42 Comments »

Shhh….Andruw Jones is slugging again….but don’t tell anyone!

29th August 2011

Nobody seems to like Andruw Jones anymore. Braves fans choose to remember the 19-year-old who hit a couple of World Series homers against the Yankees, or the guy who led the league in homers and RBI in 2005. Dodgers fans, understandably, still have nightmares about him--the guy who hit .158/.256/.249 for them in 2008. Rangers fans recall a guy who hit a few homers but still batted just .214.

Last year, Jones put together a nice season in limited duty with the White Sox. This year, the Yankees have followed the same strategy, and look what it has gotten them:

  • Slash line of .254/.354/.514, as compared with his career numbers of .256/.339/.488. That's right--he's got a higher OBP and SLG despite playing in the heart of the steroids era.
  • 11 HR and 28 RBI in 164 PAs. He couldn't maintain that over 600 PAs, but if he did they'd project to 40 HR and 102 RBI.
  • An OPS+ of 128, a career high except for that insane 2005 (again, though, over a pretty small number of plate appearances.)
This is for a guy who made $500,000 with the White Sox last year and just $2 million with the Yankees this year. The biggest knock on him is that he can't be an every day player any more. But at such a low price, as long as his team can afford the roster spot for a part-timer, he's a great asset.



Posted in Uncategorized | 61 Comments »