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I can tell you that there is absolutely nothing that WAR gives me that I can't ascertain effectively by looking at a players slash stat line, his defensive valuations, and his team.
BTW, do you guys pronounce it war, like World War II, or waar, like car? I've always thought waar, since war is already a thing, but maybe I'm alone in that.
And that makes a difference how? The writer, and you now, are intentionally using the term vaguely enough so that it can mean two different things.
This all needs to be converted into a dollar amount somehow, and WAR is a pretty obvious means to doing that.
I'd like to see your posts on this from the day. Besides, it's exactly the voting media types who need these kinds of tools.
His argument here is in support of not dismissing RBI out of hand, so while everyone is jacked up, and some people ("clutch players") may feed off the environment, in his example one player won the battle and drove in the run.
don't think it's quite a strawman in that I'm sure that people exist who write about WAR like it's absolute. And those people are arrogant. I just don't think they're influencing very many people. Not nearly as many people as the anti-stats writers reach.
Well, no, not really. Language is vague, admittedly. Always has been, always will be. But there's nothing secretive or underhanded here. Anyone with a passing interest in baseball should know that "driving in runs" means "getting RBIs." They're called "Runs Batted In" for god's sake. You accumulate them by driving in runs. The runner on base accumulates Runs Scored by scoring on another player's RBI. This is Baseball 101, man. You can't not know this.
Blyleven is #39 in WAR all time and his election to the HoF was no certain thing.
Mussina is 57; Bagwell is 59; Schilling is 63; Whitaker is 74; Larry Walker is 81; Trammell is 91; Raines and Reuschel are tied at 97 and Smoltz is 100. What does it say about WAR that these players are unlikely to be elected by the BBWAA?
Have you never heard someone argue that "RBIs are meaningless?"
But that's not what the writer says. He says that he just knows who the best players are already, so why bother with WAR. The reason he doesn't like it isn't because he has a better way of evaluating a player's overall ability, like you do.
And now we just have a wordy "look at that dummy!"
And all of your wordiness doesn't change that you are intentionally conflating two ideas, what driving in runs means to a team, and what an individual's RBI total says about his own ability. You're smart enough to understand the difference, so I have no idea why you are pretending otherwise.
Understanding if a FA contract was good or bad?
If you're trying to figure out whether the Braves should use their limited funds sign a #3 SP, or a slick fielding 3B with an average bat, or a slugging LF with atrocious D, you have to compare their vastly different abilities, and the contribution each makes to run scoring and run prevention.
Any front office who doesn't drill the crosstabs and depends on a all-in-one spitball stat like WAR is already behind the curve.
But you need to use a WAR methodology to bring those "crosstabs" together.
If you have information that one guy is 7.5X and 2.5Y, and someone else is 3.5X and 4.5Y, you need a method for converting X into Y to compare them. That's WAR.
If your team needs X more than Y, you get guy one. If your team needs Y over X, you get guy two.
There are different implementations of this methodology, which produce different statistics.
For comparing players, it's highly useful, and it's very difficult to make these sorts of comparisons without using some sort of WAR-like method.
Which necessarily argues for the inaccuracy of any or all of them.
If I were in a major league front office, what would I use WAR for?
I've asked this question before and never got a satisfactory answer: If I were in a major league front office, what would I use WAR for?
Why do you keep pretending WAR can only be backward looking? For player acquisition everyone agrees you want to look at projected value (of which past value is a part, but only a part).
For player acquisition everyone agrees you want to look at projected value (of which past value is a part, but only a part).
From a front office perspective, I don't see any reason that they would need that.
Because as a combined number, it really doesn't have value, even as a projection tool. It's the components that matter, not the final number.
What are you going to do with the fact that a player is +10 rBat, -2 rBaserunning, +1 rGIDP, and -4 rField if you don't add them up, at least implicitly?
Any time you're comparing players, perhaps as possible free agent signings, you're going to use something like a WAR methodology.
And that's my question: When would I have any use for that single numerical value?
Just to be clear. Would you object to one, two, none, or all of these sentences?
1) I project Nick Swisher to +27 RAR, and as such I don't think he's good value at his likely contract.
2) I project Nick Swisher to +15 Bat, -2 Run, +21 Rep, -8 Pos, +1 Def, +27 RAR, and as such I don't think he's good value at his likely contract.
3) I project Nick Swisher to +15 Bat, -2 Run, +21 Rep, -8 Pos, +1 Def, and as such I don't think he's good value at his likely contract.
I think that it's best to say (2) rather than (1). If your argument is that we should use WAR methodology, but we should always express ourselves in terms of WAR components rather than single-number WAR, I don't have a particular problem with that.
I think it would be silly to object to (2) but not (3). I'm just adding in the WAR "added up" number for ease of reading, rather than forcing the reading to do the obvious addition in her head. You don't object to that, right? And if you don't, you don't object to WAR. You object to expressions of WAR which don't also include information about its components.
The Indians used "something like a WAR methodology" when they decided to trade for Tris Speaker
I would not object to (2) or (3), as they at least leave the complexity in the equation.
(2) includes WAR. You don't object to WAR. You object to certain kinds of expressions of WAR. That's completely different from what you've been saying all thread long.
Every stat, every measurement, every word can be used in dumb ways. WAR can be used in dumb ways. However, the WAR methodology is exceptionally useful for talking about baseball, you need to be clear and not talk about how much you dislike WAR when in fact you only object to a certain dumb expression of it.
I'd say that in expressing your opinion about WAR, you are simplifying a necessary complexity, when in fact you need to leave the complexity in the discussion.
When you're deciding whether to trade Trevor Bauer for Didi Gregorius.
But today's WAR measures are good enough there isn't a lot more ground to plow in many cases. You can reject defensive measurements that said Trout was otherworldly and Cabrera bad, and Trout still crushes Miggy. You throw out WARs measures of base running and defense altogether and Miggys bat was still barely more valuable than Trouts. Thatt clearly tells you Trout was more valuable, because any set of eyes will tell you Trout added so much more value on defense and base paths that Miggy would have to have crushed Triout at the plate to make up for it.
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