You Are Here > Baseball-Reference.com > Blog >

SITE NEWS: We are moving all of our site and company news into a single blog for Sports-Reference.com. We'll tag all B-R content, so you can quickly and easily find the content you want.

Also, our existing B-R blog rss feed will be redirected to the new site's feed.

Baseball-Reference.com » Sports Reference

For more from Andy and the gang, check out their new site High Heat Stats.

Archive for September, 2011

Should Defense be More Consistent than Offense?

Posted by Sean Forman on September 6, 2011

Is WAR the new RBI? | Its About The Money

I'm not going to speak to the larger discussion around this article because the author loses a lot of credibility/weight (at least for me) when he admits in the comments, "I slightly misrepresent how the stat works here, in favor of making the statement more hyperbolic." That and the article is being discussed elsewhere, but one of the comments points out a particular issue that annoys me.

Here is the Comment by Hank

I'll post this again....

Carl Crawford career LF at the Trop 22.5 UZR/150
Carl Crawford career LF everywhere else: 7.5 UZR/150

This is over 8 years (so each sample size is the rough equivalent of 4 full years).

1 year OF UZR samples are bad, but even the general "3 years is what you need" can also have issue as UZR can have systematic biases.... input bias, park effects and subjective components (armR, errR for outfielders) which don't even out over a 3 year period.

I like the concept of WAR and the issue I have with it is bad input data (the defensive stats in both WAR models and the baserunning values now put into the fWAR). Until these variables can be measured better (FieldFX?), any difference in WAR between players based on these components should be taken with a huge boulder of salt.

OR ANOTHER OF A SIMILAR VEIN

THANK YOU for this post.

UZR may be good for multiple years, but it is a flawed single season stat. Saying Carl Crawford one year in TB went from being an elite LF to being a terrible one the next year makes no sense.

What is the issue here exactly? Why would a difference in home and road UZR be evidence of a flaw in UZR? Or why would the fact that Crawford's UZR is much worse this year mean there is a problem with uzr? Some players hit a lot better at home than on the road? Why wouldn't fielders see the same effect.

For some reason when defensive numbers are inconsistent across splits or years folks gnash their teeth and blame the faulty defensive metrics, but Carl Crawford can go from an OPS+ of 135 to 82 in a year and people won't question the offensive numbers.

Why do we expect greater consistency on defense than on offense? That doesn't seem to me to be a valid expectation.

55 Comments | Posted in Uncategorized

Nearly-perfect rookies

Posted by John Autin on September 6, 2011

Zach Stewart tossed a near-perfect game Monday in his 10th career game, allowing 1 hit and no other baserunners in 9 innings.

Since 1919, here are the 11 pitchers with a start of at least 9 innings allowing no more than 1 baserunner, within their first 20 games:

Rk Gcar 5 Player Age Date Tm Opp Rslt App,Dec IP H R ER BB BR SO HR Pit Str GSc BF AB 2B 3B IBB HBP SH SF ROE GDP SB CS PO BK WP ERA WPA RE24 aLI
1 1 Jimmy Jones 22.154 1986-09-21 SDP HOU W 5-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 1 0 0 0 1 5 0     90 28 28 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.00 0.257 4.036 .414
2 3 Travis Wood 23.154 2010-07-10 CIN PHI L 0-1 GS-9 9.0 1 0 0 0 1 8 0 109 74 93 28 28 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.00 0.681 4.430 1.228
3 5 Charlie Robertson 26.089 1922-04-30 CHW DET W 2-0 SHO9 ,W  9.0 0 0 0 0 0 6 0     93 27 27 0 0   0 0             0 0 0.00      
4 9 Von McDaniel 18.101 1957-07-28 (1) STL PIT W 4-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 1 0 0 0 1 4 0     89 28 28 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.00 0.468 4.440 .706
5 10 Zach Stewart 24.342 2011-09-05 (2) CHW MIN W 4-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 1 0 0 0 1 9 0 114 75 94 28 28 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.00 0.440 4.389 .692
6 16 Hiroki Kuroda 33.148 2008-07-07 LAD ATL W 3-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 1 0 0 0 1 6 0 91 61 91 28 28 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.00 0.449 4.500 .733
7 16 Vida Blue 21.055 1970-09-21 OAK MIN W 6-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 0 0 0 1 1 9 0     95 28 27 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.00 0.563 4.046 .856
8 17 Woodie Fryman 26.077 1966-07-01 PIT NYM W 12-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 1 0 0 0 1 8 0     93 27 27 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0.00 0.285 3.976 .471
9 17 Mat Latos 22.155 2010-05-13 SDP SFG W 1-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 1 0 0 0 1 6 0 106 67 91 28 28 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.00 0.819 4.430 1.341
10 18 Jonathon Niese 23.226 2010-06-10 (2) NYM SDP W 3-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 1 0 0 0 1 6 0 108 76 91 28 28 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.00 0.399 4.258 .685
11 19 Hipolito Pichardo 22.334 1992-07-21 KCR BOS W 8-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 1 0 0 0 1 4 0 104 69 89 28 28 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.00 0.280 4.430 .400
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 9/6/2011.

33 Comments | Posted in Uncategorized

MLB Network: The Stat Story, Sept. 18, 10pm ET

Posted by Neil Paine on September 6, 2011

A heads-up for anyone who didn't see this note at Stathead or BBTF... At 10 p.m. on 9/18, MLB Network is running a special Behind The Seams called "The Stat Story" -- a documentary (narrated by Bob Costas) about the history of sabermetrics, as well as its spread into front offices over the past few decades.

12 Comments | Posted in Announcements

Three 5-WAR pitchers on one team … but will they win it all?

Posted by John Autin on September 6, 2011

Barring a collapse by one of the Big Three, the Phillies will become the 17th team since 1893 to have 3 pitchers with at least 5 Wins Above Replacement (using B-R's WAR formula).

If you believe that pitching is the main key to championships, this list might give you pause; only 2 teams with this kind of "big three" have won the World Series, and none after 1912.

66 Comments | Posted in Uncategorized

Labor Day notes: Lee’s 6th shutout; rook’s near-perfect game

Posted by John Autin on September 5, 2011

-- Cliff Lee, who was lifted after 8.2 scoreless innings in last start, got his 6th shutout of the year Monday (as first noted by Andy), stopping Atlanta on 5 hits and no walks in exactly 100 pitches. That matches the most shutouts since 1989; Randy Johnson also had 6 in 1998.

  • Lee's surge since July 30 -- 7 straight wins, 0.96 ERA -- has pumped intrigue into the NL Cy Young race, with Lee and Halladay virtually tied in ERA, IP and Wins Above Replacement. Meanwhile, Clayton Kershaw leads the league in Strikeouts and IP, has a slight edge on Lee and Halladay in ERA, and is a solid 3rd in WAR; and rounding out the pack, Cole Hamels leads the league in WHIP, Ian Kennedy leads in Wins and W%, and Johnny Cueto remains the ERA leader. (Kennedy's advanced stats don't compare with this bunch, but he deserves to be in the mix for stepping up his game as the #1 starter on a division winner.) Things may shake out a bit over the final 4 weeks, but will a clear-cut winner emerge?

39 Comments | Posted in Uncategorized

Cliff Lee’s 6th shutout

Posted by Andy on September 5, 2011

Sorry for a third straight post involving the Phillies, but I see that Cliff Lee has thrown 7 shutouts innings so far tonight and might get his 6th shutout of the season.

If he does, he'll be the first pitcher since Randy Johnson in 1998 to record 6 shutouts in a season:

Rk Player SHO Year Age
1 John Tudor 10 1985 31
2 Tim Belcher 8 1989 27
3 Orel Hershiser 8 1988 29
4 Roger Clemens 8 1988 25
5 Dwight Gooden 8 1985 20
6 Fernando Valenzuela 8 1981 20
7 Roger Clemens 7 1987 24
8 Randy Johnson 6 1998 34
9 Danny Jackson 6 1988 26
10 Tim Leary 6 1988 30
11 Jack Morris 6 1986 31
12 Steve Carlton 6 1982 37
13 Jerry Reuss 6 1980 31
14 Tommy John 6 1980 37
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 9/5/2011.

The above list is most shutouts in a season since 1980.

19 Comments | Posted in Uncategorized

Phils’ reliever throws 20 wide ones

Posted by John Autin on September 5, 2011

In a long-relief stint in Sunday's 14-inning game, David Herndon of the Phillies issued 5 intentional walks (and 7 walks in all) in 3.2 innings. That tied the known relief record for IBBs in a game,* and fell 1 shy of the game record in any role:

39 Comments | Posted in Uncategorized

Yankees and Phillies have huge run-scoring differentials

Posted by Andy on September 5, 2011

The Yankees and Phillies are both outscoring their opponents by at least 1.3 runs per game in 2011. That translates to about 200 more runs scored than allowed over an entire season.

In the Steroids Era of 1993-2009, this was an easier feat since 1.3 runs was a smaller fraction of the overall elevated levels of run scoring. The last teams to have a differential of at least 1.3 over the course of a season were the 2007 Red Sox, 2001 Mariners, 1999 Diamondbacks, 1998 Yankees, 1998 Astros, 1998 Braves, 1997 Braves, 1995 Indians, and 1993 Braves. Even still, a lot of these teams were powerhouses.

Run-scoring in 2011 is 4.28 runs per game, which is the lowest since (you guessed it!) 1992, when it was 4.12 runs per game. So which teams before 1993 managed a 1.3 differential for an entire season? Going back, the last several were the 1986 Mets, 1976 Reds, 1976 Phillies, 1975 Reds, 1974 Dodgers, 1971 Orioles, 1970 Orioles, 1969 Orioles, and the 1961 Yankees. Those were all really good teams.

28 Comments | Posted in Uncategorized

WPA>= .260 In 1st Major League Game

Posted by Steve Lombardi on September 4, 2011

Since 1919, which batter had the highest WPA in his first big league game?

37 Comments | Posted in Game Finders

Winning 15+ Games In 1st Or 2nd Season Since 1973

Posted by Steve Lombardi on September 3, 2011

Which pitchers won 15 games or more during their first or second major league season since 1973?

90 Comments | Posted in Season Finders

Page 9 of 11« First...7891011