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Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Matinale: Sean Casey misinforms again but he’s not alone

Casey leaves the underground and stops inside the golden triple crown stats…

Sean Casey today on MBL Clubhouse Confidential with no challenge from host Brian Kenny assured us that Prince Fielder lost home runs playing in Detroit for two years.  I looked it up.

2012: 18 home, 12 road
2013: 13 home, 12 road

We hear this junk all the time because people don’t bother to check.  For instance that both Brian McCann and Jacoby Ellsbury will hit a lot of home runs because they will be playing their home games in Yankee Stadium.  Casey also assured us about Ellsbury on the same program.

In McCann’s three highest home run seasons he hit 14, 12, 9 on the road.  So let’s say that he hits 12 on the road.  Will he hit 50% more at home?  That’s a lot.  If he did, his total would be 30 and very unlikely, partly because I think he is unlikely to catch 120 games in any of his five seasons with the Yankees.

Repoz Posted: December 04, 2013 at 09:42 PM | 16 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: media

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   1. DJS and the Infinite Sadness Posted: December 04, 2013 at 10:43 PM (#4610886)
That's not refuting the point. The home/road stats don't tell us how many a player lost, they tell us what happened. We're talking half-a-season sample sizes - Fielder could very well "should" have hit 20 and 15 at home but the park took them away.

Generic park factors have more predictive value to a player's stats in a new park than the player's home/road splits in their previous park. And it's not even particularly close. Even over long periods of time, an individual player's home/road stats are too noisy to care much about.
   2. ptodd Posted: December 04, 2013 at 11:05 PM (#4610893)
McCann will get a chance to DH some, so he should get more PA than with the Braves.

Also, some hitters can adjust to their park and take advantage of favorable aspects. Ellsbury and McCann might pull the ball a bit more at home.
   3. bigglou115 Posted: December 04, 2013 at 11:22 PM (#4610899)
I don't get this idea that McCann is some hobbled up catcher. Had he been the healthiest catcher in the game? No. But he's failed to Reach 120 games exactly once in his career. Saying that he's 51+% to never reach 120 again seems like a stretch.
   4. theboyqueen Posted: December 04, 2013 at 11:30 PM (#4610903)
Now that's some radical baseball, right there.
   5. salvomania Posted: December 04, 2013 at 11:48 PM (#4610906)
But he's failed to Reach 120 games exactly once in his career. Saying that he's 51+% to never reach 120 again seems like a stretch.

The excerpt was talking about catching 120 games, something McCann failed to do either of the past two years, part of an overall slide that has seen his year-over-year games-caught totals decline in four of the past five seasons.

It happens, but it's rare for catchers to suddenly become more durable after turning 30.

EDIT: ...and catching 120 games isn't some kind of threshhold of performance---more like an upper tier. Only seven of 30 teams had a catcher who caught 120+ games in 2013, and three catchers in all of baseball---Russell Martin, Yadier Molina and Matt Wieters---have done it in each of the past two seasons.
   6. bobm Posted: December 05, 2013 at 12:17 AM (#4610920)
Jacoby Ellsbury: 206 Plate Appearances in Career-2013, Away Games and Vs. NYY
  BA  OBP  SLG  OPS  BAbip  
.265 .333 .384 .717   .306


Jacoby Ellsbury: 163 Plate Appearances in Career-2013, Home Games and Vs. NYY
  BA  OBP  SLG  OPS BAbip
.317 .373 .483 .855  .357
   7. Shoebo Posted: December 05, 2013 at 01:16 AM (#4610933)
Her certainly hit home runs at smaller rate at home the last two years then he did in Milwaukee. Whether or not the PRIMARY cause was the ballpark, his change in approach to be somewhat more contact oriented, decline, or an equal combination of all three is not really known.

I           Year   PA   AB  2B  HR  BB  SO   BA  OBP  SLG   OPS BAbip
            2005   32   30   1   2   2   9 .300 .344 .533  .877  .368
            2006  321  274  15  11  38  68 .252 .355 .434  .789  .294
            2007  337  276  20  27  51  55 .301 .421 .667 1.088  .286
            2008  336  285  10  18  43  69 .281 .375 .519  .894  .305
            2009  349  291  20  23  50  72 .285 .384 .598  .982  .296
            2010  350  276  14  18  63  64 .272 .423 .518  .941  .292
            2011  341  279  19  24  54  44 .326 .437 .659 1.096  .312
            2012  338  279  13  18  45  38 .337 .438 .577 1.015  .333
            2013  349  300  16  13  43  55 .283 .375 .467  .842  .306
    Career Total 2753 2290 128 154 389 474 .292 .401 .554  .955  .305 


Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 12/5/2013.
   8. DJS and the Infinite Sadness Posted: December 05, 2013 at 01:31 AM (#4610938)
Catching is rough work. Of the catchers with the 50 most games caught before their 30th birthday, only 12 are in the top 50 for most games caught after their 30th birthday (and only 2, Pudge and Hartnett in the top 10). Fisk and Boone aren't even in the top 100 for games caught before 30.
   9. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: December 05, 2013 at 01:47 AM (#4610942)
Catching is rough work. Of the catchers with the 50 most games caught before their 30th birthday, only 12 are in the top 50 for most games caught after their 30th birthday (and only 2, Pudge and Hartnett in the top 10). Fisk and Boone aren't even in the top 100 for games caught before 30.


That's just wrong.

If there's only one Pudge in that paragraph, it ain't the guy who played in Texas.
   10. DJS and the Infinite Sadness Posted: December 05, 2013 at 03:39 AM (#4610952)
I didn't even bring up Fred Haney!
   11. Walt Davis Posted: December 05, 2013 at 05:03 AM (#4610954)
But how did he lose those HR? Detroit is a hitter's park certainly. There must be HR park factors out there and HR/FB by park.
   12. Shoebo Posted: December 05, 2013 at 07:05 AM (#4610955)
Comerica was ranking pretty neutral until the new park in Minnesota came online. You don't think that has anything to do with it ?

ESPN HR Factors has Comerica pretty close to neutral the last two years, and in Miller park as the most homer friendly place in 2012, and still homer friendly in 2013

Same at FG
   13. SG Posted: December 05, 2013 at 12:07 PM (#4611103)
I wouldn't look at overall home run factors. I would look at home run park factors by handedness. I don't have my park factors in front of me but I think Comerica is harder on LHB than RHB when it comes to homers.
   14. Rough Carrigan Posted: December 05, 2013 at 12:49 PM (#4611143)
Yup, SG is right. And this made Ellsbury's use of a lean back and try to pull the ball style all the more frustrating, at times, in a park like Fenway that decreases homers by lefties. You had one of the fastest players in the league hitting in a style that didn't suit his park and made him slower to get out of the batter's box. But he was still very good.
   15. Colin Posted: December 05, 2013 at 04:07 PM (#4611273)
McCann's problem hasn't been staying in the lineup as compared to other catchers, so much as it's been staying useful in the lineup, and the problem has been going on about 5 years now. Since 2009, here are his OPS for April-July and his OPS for August-Sept:

2009: Apr-July: 893 ; Aug-Sept: 742
2010: Apr-July: 852 ; Aug-Sept: 785
2011: Apr-July: 889 ; Aug-Sept: 638
2012: Apr-July: 768 ; Aug-Sept: 541 (played hurt, played only 18 of 30 team games in September
2013: May-July: 901 ; Aug-Sept: 628 (missed first month recovering from offseason surgery)

I assume this isn't an uncommon pattern for catchers, maybe for lots of players. He just hasn't been able to sustain his hitting down the stretch while playing as a full-time catcher. It's going to be interesting to see if getting more rest and time at DH will help him stay fresh so that he can keep up his offense.
   16. Shoebo Posted: December 06, 2013 at 12:57 AM (#4611670)
I was responding to Walt's point that Comerica is CERTAINLY a hitters park. I don't think it is. I agree with 13 & 14 that handeness HR factor is more useful. I just didn't have that data available. But it would only serve to buttress my counter point to Walt even more if the assertion that it's tougher on lefties than righties is true.

Also, I don't think there is much of anything "certain" with park factors once you get away from the most extreme enviornments.

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