Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Monday, August 23, 2010

Manley: Does Good Pitching “Always” Beat Good Hitting?

Dan Plesac rethinks lifelong stance. Shifts weight to other leg. Resumes yammering.

Barring some sort of nuclear science analysis, the obvious way to look at it is to say this. The midpoint between the two is .787. If the hitters are above .787 versus these pitchers, then good hitting beats good pitching. If they are below .787, then it is the other way around.

Naturally, there is only one way to find out – monotonous work! There is no easy way to do this. I did it with the least amount of pain possible, but it still requires looking at each player and his stats against each pitcher. That’s 400 potential match-ups.

It’s also true that it represents 1,753 plate appearances. That’s a healthy number and goes a long ways toward eliminating any sample-size issues. It’s roughly equivalent to three seasons for a player if he went to the plate every time against the same pitcher.

...The point here is not so much whether 2.16% could just as easily be -2.16%, it’s about whether or not good pitching beats good hitting. As I said already, this doesn’t prove it one way or the other. It’s just a study. But, in lieu of any other objective evidence known to man, one would say the adage is false.

In theory, I would have the top-20 hitters versus the top-20 pitchers every year. That would tend to prove it one way or the other. But, it’s also a month of work and that’s not going to happen. Therefore, I am going to try to determine another way to evaluate it. I have an idea.

Repoz Posted: August 23, 2010 at 11:58 AM | 9 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: history, sabermetrics

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. Pat Rapper's Delight Posted: August 23, 2010 at 01:05 PM (#3623199)
Good pitching will always beat good hitting. And vice versa.
   2. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: August 23, 2010 at 01:40 PM (#3623226)
I like Manley's Cool Factoid sidebars, especially this one:

Cubs manager, Lou Piniella, lost his last game 16-5 to Atlanta. His first game this season was a 16-5 loss to Atlanta.
   3. TomH Posted: August 23, 2010 at 02:15 PM (#3623257)
This has been studied extensively before. When I get to my home I can send at least two links to published analyses, both with large sample sizes. They both concluded that results of good pitching vs good hitting are exactly what the predictive math esxpects.
   4. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: August 23, 2010 at 02:15 PM (#3623260)
Cubs manager, Lou Piniella, lost his last game 16-5 to Atlanta. His first game this season was a 16-5 loss to Atlanta.

Now that's a steady hand.
   5. hokieneer Posted: August 23, 2010 at 02:36 PM (#3623280)
Isn't this myth derived from great starters shutting down playoff caliber lineups in October? I believe the weather plays a part in that; it's harder to swing a bat in colder temperatures.
   6. TomH Posted: August 23, 2010 at 02:58 PM (#3623299)
EGGS actly!
   7. TomH Posted: August 23, 2010 at 02:59 PM (#3623301)
AND the fact that if your lineup is 1 r/g better than avg, you won't be 1 r/g better vs Mariano and Pedro; it's proportional, not additive.
   8. Karl from NY Posted: August 23, 2010 at 06:30 PM (#3623636)
The top ERA+ team went 385-395.

The top ERA+ team had a collective OPS+ of 100.8. The top OPS+ team had a collective ERA+ of 101.1.


Is the 10-win difference explainable by that, that the best hitting team had slightly better pitching than the best pitching team had hitting?

Also, which way does the causation go? Maybe the top OPS+ team has a slightly above average ERA+ because they have a lead more often, so pitch more innings with the closer, and fewer garbage innings by the back end of the staff?

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
cardsfanboy
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogOT: Politics, October 2014: Sunshine, Baseball, and Etch A Sketch: How Politicians Use Analogies
(2769 - 1:28am, Oct 21)
Last: The Yankee Clapper

NewsblogSielski: A friend fights for ex-Phillie Dick Allen's Hall of Fame induction
(71 - 1:20am, Oct 21)
Last: Jacob

NewsblogCalcaterra: So, if you’re not a fan of the Royals or Giants, who ya got?
(93 - 12:26am, Oct 21)
Last: Howie Menckel

NewsblogDealing or dueling – what’s a manager to do? | MGL on Baseball
(15 - 12:12am, Oct 21)
Last: Ray (RDP)

NewsblogFan Returns Home Run Ball to Ishikawa; Receives World Series tickets
(33 - 11:52pm, Oct 20)
Last: The Yankee Clapper

NewsblogOT: NFL/NHL thread
(8366 - 10:29pm, Oct 20)
Last: steagles

NewsblogBrisbee: The 5 worst commercials of the MLB postseason
(133 - 10:26pm, Oct 20)
Last: zonk

NewsblogHitting coaches blamed for lack of offense - Sports - The Boston Globe
(15 - 10:19pm, Oct 20)
Last: Walt Davis

NewsblogCould the Yankees ever be Royals? Young and athletic K.C. is everything that Bombers are not - NY Daily News
(28 - 10:18pm, Oct 20)
Last: Barry`s_Lazy_Boy

NewsblogPitch from Zito helped sell Hudson on Giants | MLB.com
(6 - 9:15pm, Oct 20)
Last: the Hugh Jorgan returns

NewsblogWhy Royals great Frank White no longer associates with the team whose stadium he built - Yahoo Sports
(19 - 9:06pm, Oct 20)
Last: A New Leaf (Black Hawk Reign of Terror)

NewsblogAngell: Gigantic
(38 - 8:22pm, Oct 20)
Last: Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip

NewsblogOT: Monthly NBA Thread - October 2014
(272 - 7:27pm, Oct 20)
Last: andrewberg

NewsblogMorosi: Could Cain’s story make baseball king of sports world again?
(97 - 6:24pm, Oct 20)
Last: BDC

NewsblogESPN: Brian Roberts retires
(22 - 6:19pm, Oct 20)
Last: Captain Supporter

Page rendered in 0.2121 seconds
52 querie(s) executed