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Sunday, April 14, 2019

O’ Yeah! Chris Davis Ends Record Hitless Streak, Smacks First Hit Of Season

BOSTON (WJZ) — Baltimore Orioles first baseman Chris Davis’ historic streak is finally behind him.  The struggling slugger smacked a two-RBI single off of Red Sox pitcher Rick Porcello in the top of the first inning of Saturday’s game at Fenway Park,  ending a brutal string of 54 hitless at-bats that stretched back to September 14th of last season.

Players in the Orioles dugout gave Davis a rousing ovation after the hit as he stood smiling on first base, and the Boston crowd also gave him a warm reception. To celebrate the moment himself, he even asked to keep the baseball.

Davis had surpassed the record held by former Los Angeles Dodgers utilityman Eugenio Velez (46 ABs) set back in 2011.

It isn’t all sunshine for Davis quite yet though as he now must work to get on base with his bat more frequently, particularly if he wants to win back the support of frustrated Orioles fans. He’s certainly on his way though. Davis led all batters in the game, going 3 for 5, including two doubles, and knocking in four runs. The breakout game lifted his average for the season to .079.

So, how do we celebrate the end of this streak?

 

QLE Posted: April 14, 2019 at 07:10 AM | 22 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: chris davis, hits, orioles, streaks

Reader Comments and Retorts

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   1. ajnrules Posted: April 14, 2019 at 10:24 AM (#5831691)
It’s really starting to bug me how people are pretending Bob Buhl didn’t exist. Yes Buhl was a pitcher and yes Chris Davis broke the record for position players but don’t tell me 0 for 54 is longer than 0 for 87.
   2. Hot Wheeling American, MS-13 Enthusiast Posted: April 14, 2019 at 11:10 AM (#5831694)
Get a hold of yourself, man.
   3. Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: April 14, 2019 at 11:11 AM (#5831695)
Davis will probably finish above .150, maybe even .200. People tend to overrate a player’s start to the season. He’s still below replacement level, probably, but the people acting like he’d have the worst season of all-time were overreacting.
   4. puck Posted: April 14, 2019 at 12:21 PM (#5831702)
Chris Davis vs 2019 Red Sox starting rotation is one of those antitheses of "unstoppable force vs immovable objects."
   5. BrianBrianson Posted: April 14, 2019 at 12:44 PM (#5831705)
But it's more fun to witness an historically awful season than a regular awful season.
   6. Darren Posted: April 14, 2019 at 01:02 PM (#5831709)
What a relief. Good for him.
   7. Jose Canusee Posted: April 14, 2019 at 01:31 PM (#5831715)
I was sorry to have not caught the MLB.com free game of the day to see how the announcers led up to the AB and to see the reactions.
   8. Master of the Horse Posted: April 14, 2019 at 01:54 PM (#5831721)
Agree with 7. Sure he's a pro and yes he's getting a shitton of cash but still that situation had to be oppressive.
   9. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 14, 2019 at 06:03 PM (#5831794)

People tend to overrate a player’s start to the season. He’s still below replacement level, probably, but the people acting like he’d have the worst season of all-time were overreacting.
Or, you know, remembering last year.
   10. Howie Menckel Posted: April 14, 2019 at 10:08 PM (#5831871)
last year, Davis had a .168 AVG and a .187 xBA ("expected batting average" based on peripherals that is a better predictor than AVG).

this year, in a small sample size his xBA is.... .184

so that's kind of the ballpark we're looking at, unless he gets contact lenses, or a new hitting coach, or laid by one of Mark Grace's slumpbusters - some sort of "change of scenery" adjustment
   11. Meatwad Posted: April 14, 2019 at 11:02 PM (#5831876)
so that's kind of the ballpark we're looking at, unless he gets contact lenses, or a new hitting coach, or laid by one of Mark Grace's slumpbusters - some sort of "change of scenery" adjustment

Whats ms. Sandberg upto these days?
   12. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 15, 2019 at 03:17 AM (#5831880)

Well, the hitting streak did reach 1 game, but it's over now.
   13. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: April 15, 2019 at 09:54 AM (#5831910)
last year, Davis had a .168 AVG and a .187 xBA ("expected batting average" based on peripherals that is a better predictor than AVG).

this year, in a small sample size his xBA is.... .184


And he hit .189 in Spring Training.

But starting the year 3-for-42 does make it a bit harder not to have a historically bad season.
   14. Zonk Was told to do 'Crazy Sh**' Posted: April 15, 2019 at 10:05 AM (#5831919)
Gimme the under on Davis +/- .200....
   15. Fernigal McGunnigle Posted: April 15, 2019 at 10:27 AM (#5831933)
But starting the year 3-for-42 does make it a bit harder not to have a historically bad season.
I'd bet the opposite, that the horrendous start makes it less likely that he has a historically terrible season. At some point the Orioles have to realize that he's not a useful ballplayer, and either bench or release him. Had he started mediocre, say something like 10-42, there would be more room to imagine a return to cromulence, and they'd be more likely to give him enough rope to hang himself with.

I looked at every season (in BBRef) in which a player ended below -2.5 WAR. Davis in 2018 was older than all but two of them, Ted Simmons in 1984 and Willie McGee in 1999. McGee was a part-timer, so Simmons is the only direct comparison, and he was coming off a season in which he hit 308/351/448. Teams generally don't let bad ballplayers in their 30s play enough to have historically terrible seasons.

Of course, the Orioles might keep playing Davis because they owe him $90 million and they're going to be terrible anyway...
   16. Master of the Horse Posted: April 15, 2019 at 12:03 PM (#5831997)
15 makes a really good point. And I quickly checked Simmons who had a truly terrible Babip in 1984, .233 vs career .284. So along with maybe hitting the end he looked to have had terrible luck in 1984.
   17. Sunday silence Posted: April 15, 2019 at 12:06 PM (#5831998)
last year, Davis had a .168 AVG and a .187 xBA ("expected batting average" based on peripherals that is a better predictor than AVG).

this year, in a small sample size his xBA is.... .184


But this is always the problem with "peripheral" stats*; when everything is normal they dont really add anything, other than: "Hmm interesting." And when things are strangely off base; they really dont tell us anything.

Take BABIP; sure normal players babip .30; that's interesting. BUt there are also hard hitting players that maintain a better than .30 babip; they arent headed toward regression. or take me, if i batted my babip would be 0.05 or something; I'm not headed toward a better season Im just off the charts.

Or take FIP; if you look at guys like Steve Blass or ANkiel. going from memory when I looked at Blass's it was like his fielders were contributing to his woes; or maybe batters were just hitting laser beams all over the field?

Then a couple weeks ago we had this discussion of catcher framing and how much this produces. And I dunno if it was Tom, or one of the newspaper guys who found the guy with the worst framing was it? And of course it was off the charts, but this pitching staff was also bad as hell. I dont think that's a coincidence; these off the charts performances on the ends of the bell curve are producing aberrant results.

So Im not really sure how useful an xBA is with someone who is struggling. I usually look at strikeout rates myself as a better predictor of someone who's going to crater.

* Note I dont really have an objective def'n of a "peripheral stat" its sort of something Ive just noticed; so its open to further discussion.
   18. Sunday silence Posted: April 15, 2019 at 12:12 PM (#5832002)
I'd bet the opposite, that the horrendous start makes it less likely that he has a historically terrible season


THats the very same meaning that the post you are quoting suggested; so I dunno if there's a typo somewhere or just misreading what Inge said.
   19. Master of the Horse Posted: April 15, 2019 at 12:16 PM (#5832005)
17--Great point in that too many strikeouts is a terrible sign. It's early but the Brewers management is kind of shook that Corey Ray has 19 strikeouts in 35 at bats before yesterday's game. That's crazy high rate wise.
   20. Fernigal McGunnigle Posted: April 15, 2019 at 12:30 PM (#5832011)
I'd bet the opposite, that the horrendous start makes it less likely that he has a historically terrible season

THats the very same meaning that the post you are quoting suggested; so I dunno if there's a typo somewhere or just misreading what Inge said.
I think you missed the "not" in Inge's sentence. He's saying the 3-42 start makes it easier to have a historically bad season. (Which is true if the Orioles keep playing him.)
   21. Fernigal McGunnigle Posted: April 15, 2019 at 12:33 PM (#5832014)
if i batted my babip would be 0.05 or something;
If I batted, my BABIP would be 1.000. The fielders would be so startled that I actually made contact that it would be impossible for them to react in a timely manner.
   22. Sunday silence Posted: April 15, 2019 at 12:34 PM (#5832015)
I missed the "not" ..

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