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Friday, August 17, 2012

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 8-17-2012

Tacoma Times, August 17, 1912:

FANS SEE PASSING OF ONE OF WORLD’S BEST

The passing of Hans Wagner of the Pittsburg Pirates, probably the largest batting shortstop the game has ever known, is seen here today in the action of Manager Fred Clark [sic] in sending Hamilton Hyatt in to bat for the “Flying Dutchman” in the fifth inning of yesterday’s game with Philadelphia.
...

For the first time in years Hans is hitting this season below the .300 mark, his movements in the field are slower, and some of the baseball experts charge that his confidence and old time fire are gone.

The reports of Wagner’s death were greatly exaggerated. He hit .320, led the NL in RBI, finished third in the league in slugging, eighth in OBP, ninth in runs scored, fifth in hits, third in total bases, third in doubles, and second in triples.

It takes a pretty great ballplayer for a season like that to mark his “passing”.

Dan Lee is some pumkins Posted: August 17, 2012 at 05:40 AM | 36 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: dugout, history, honus wagner

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   1. Dan Lee is some pumkins Posted: August 17, 2012 at 05:49 AM (#4210234)
Elsewhere 100 years ago, people are starting to notice that guys who no longer play in Cleveland win a lot of championships, a professor at Columbia University quite correctly suggests that Bernoulli's principle explains why a curveball curves, a touring ballclub made up of Chinese players from the University of Hawaii is unable to find lodging in Franklin, PA, and in a non-baseball-related story, the San Francisco Call reports that excessive smoking caused a woman in Tampa to soak her clothing in kerosene and set fire to herself. According to the report, she "did not complain once during her sufferings".
   2. Dan Lee is some pumkins Posted: August 17, 2012 at 05:54 AM (#4210236)
Excellent lineup for today's Birthday Team, but the pitching is shaky at best. I'm pretty sure Boog Powell is the exact opposite of Alex Cole, and I feel obligated to point out that Doug McWeeny and Wagon Tongue Keister are among my favorite baseball names.

C: Jorge Posada
1B: Rudy York
2B: Dustin Pedroia
3B/Manager: Jim Davenport
SS: Bill Keister
LF: Boog Powell
CF: Alex Cole
RF: Johnny Watwood

SP: Brett Myers
SP: John Buzhardt
SP: Vern Bickford
SP: Doug McWeeny
SP: Mike Maroth
RP: Diego Segui
RP: Skip Lockwood
RP: Bill Landrum

Not that one: Charlie Brown, Larry Johnson
Writer: Donald Honig
Minor Leaguer/World Trade Center attack victim: Marty Boryczewski
   3. zack Posted: August 17, 2012 at 08:29 AM (#4210251)
Last night the Reds broadcast brought up Reggie Sanders charging Pedro late in a perfect game attempt, when Harvey lost his perfect game by plunking Ryan Ludwick.

Which made me think, when was the last time somebody charged the mound? I was thinking the last one I could remember was the Cueto kick boxing match, but that wasn't actually started by a charge.
   4. The kids disappeared, now Der-K has too much candy Posted: August 17, 2012 at 10:01 AM (#4210310)
That is an excellent lineup - one that could win the pennant if everyone were near peak.

Pedroia, Keister*, York, Powell*, Posada^, Davenport, Watwood*, Cole*
C - 5 time A-S, peaked at 3rd in MVP voting, 5 year peak OPS+ of 131, career 121.
1B - 7 time A-S, 123 OPS+ (career), 4 year peak of 142 - not including his 3rd on the MVP ballot wartime '43 campaign.
2B - MVP, 3 time A-S (he wasn't an All Star in 2011?). You've heard of him.
3B - 2 time A-S, best season 118 OPS+ with a gold glove, 90 OPS+ career
SS - I'd never heard of him - but he's interesting. Career 117 OPS+ (in only 621 games). Tiny (5-5) high average with gap power (top 10 in slugging 3 straight years), bad glove utility guy (ss/2b/rf). Using bb-ref's neutralized to 2012 stats, he's a .297/.333/.420 for his career.
LF - fluke MVP, 4 time A-S, career 134 OPS+, three seasons over 160.
CF - 573 career games, 92 OPS+, could hit for average, draw some walks, and run into outs and errors
RF - 469 career games, 89 OPS+, three year peak of 100. Also error prone, but had the range for center.

Not much defensively, though.
   5. SoSH U at work Posted: August 17, 2012 at 10:17 AM (#4210320)
Which made me think, when was the last time somebody charged the mound? I was thinking the last one I could remember was the Cueto kick boxing match, but that wasn't actually started by


The Red Sox and Orioles had one last year, though it started when Papi went after Kevin Gregg after he flied out.

I can't remember one this season.
   6. Tom Nawrocki Posted: August 17, 2012 at 10:23 AM (#4210323)
With five hits in his last seven at-bats, Ichiro is now hitting .312 in a Yankee uniform. The most amazing thing about all this is that I'm rooting for a Yankee.
   7. The Long Arm of Rudy Law Posted: August 17, 2012 at 12:04 PM (#4210437)
The headline made me wonder how I'd never heard Honus Wagner died so young, but he played five more mostly-good years after 1912 and lived 43 more hopefully good years.
   8. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: August 17, 2012 at 12:18 PM (#4210459)
Last night the Reds broadcast brought up Reggie Sanders charging Pedro late in a perfect game attempt, when Harvey lost his perfect game by plunking Ryan Ludwick.

I was going to say "No, that was Gerald Williams". But Gerald Williams was the one who charged Pedro as the first batter of the game, when he thought Pedro was trying to break his hand.

I don't remember ever hearing of that Reggie Sanders incident!
   9. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: August 17, 2012 at 12:27 PM (#4210472)
With five hits in his last seven at-bats, Ichiro is now hitting .312 in a Yankee uniform. The most amazing thing about all this is that I'm rooting for a Yankee.
I'm glad to see him hitting, because--confirmation bias ahead!--I was sure he looked good when he first arrived in New York, felt like he was hitting the ball hard, but a lot of atom balls. Of course, now he's going to go 0-for-50 just to make me look a fool. Which is, admittedly, not that hard.
   10. Randy Jones Posted: August 17, 2012 at 12:27 PM (#4210473)
I'm all for ripping on Ice Williams, but if Pedro hit somebody, he most likely meant to do it. A while back, someone looked at pitchers rates for hit batters and compared it to their other numbers (K's and BB's and possibly something else) as a proxy for "control" and Pedro's HBP numbers stood out, a lot.
   11. Sweatpants Posted: August 17, 2012 at 12:32 PM (#4210484)
I don't remember ever hearing of that Reggie Sanders incident!
I'd never heard of it either. The recap of the game includes several quotes that make 1994 Pedro sound no less afraid to throw at batters than 2000 Pedro was.
   12. aleskel Posted: August 17, 2012 at 12:43 PM (#4210503)
A while back, someone looked at pitchers rates for hit batters and compared it to their other numbers (K's and BB's and possibly something else) as a proxy for "control" and Pedro's HBP numbers stood out, a lot.

This is something I've always wondered: Walter Johnson is 4th all time in HBP, but much further down in wild pitches and walks. So what's the story there? Was Johnson a headhunter? Weird deadball-era scoring practices?
   13. Randy Jones Posted: August 17, 2012 at 12:52 PM (#4210519)
Walter Johnson is also 3rd in Batters Faced...
   14. Bob Evans Posted: August 17, 2012 at 01:00 PM (#4210528)
Walter Johnson was reputed to be actually reluctant to throw inside.
   15. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: August 17, 2012 at 01:29 PM (#4210572)
I was going to say "No, that was Gerald Williams". But Gerald Williams was the one who charged Pedro as the first batter of the game, when he thought Pedro was trying to break his hand.

I don't remember ever hearing of that Reggie Sanders incident!


I'm all for ripping on Ice Williams, but if Pedro hit somebody, he most likely meant to do it. A while back, someone looked at pitchers rates for hit batters and compared it to their other numbers (K's and BB's and possibly something else) as a proxy for "control" and Pedro's HBP numbers stood out, a lot.

At the time of the Sanders' HBP, virtually everyone thought there was no way that he'd hit a guy while he was pitching a perfect game. But watching Pedro through the years, I've come to wonder even about that one. What better way to cement the idea that you're not afraid to throw inside than by hitting a guy during a perfect game? I have no doubt that Petey, on many occasions, was either hitting guys on purpose or indifferent to that potential outcome. It was his way of telling opponents, "Yeah, I've got great control, but don't dig in."
   16. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: August 17, 2012 at 02:03 PM (#4210619)
If baseball, instead of innings, had one offense up for twenty-seven consecutive outs, followed by the other one, what would be some of the consequences? I assume that run scoring would go way up; stranding baserunners would be cut about ninefold.
   17. Tom Nawrocki Posted: August 17, 2012 at 02:14 PM (#4210635)
No more seventh-inning stretch.
   18. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: August 17, 2012 at 02:18 PM (#4210640)
Was Rudy York so bad an athlete that you would put Boog Powell in LF? The mind boggles!

[16] It would surely lessen the impact of most HRs, heck, extra base hits and SBs.
   19. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: August 17, 2012 at 02:19 PM (#4210642)
Tom, you could have the 18th out stretch, one for each team. Or if you want one, then we could have the 39th out stretch.
   20. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: August 17, 2012 at 02:19 PM (#4210643)
If baseball, instead of innings, had one offense up for twenty-seven consecutive outs, followed by the other one, what would be some of the consequences?

People would sometimes be asked to bat while they were still on base.
   21. zack Posted: August 17, 2012 at 02:22 PM (#4210645)
This is something I've always wondered: Walter Johnson is 4th all time in HBP, but much further down in wild pitches and walks. So what's the story there? Was Johnson a headhunter? Weird deadball-era scoring practices?


The Big Train led the league in batters faced five times, but only HBP twice (and wild pitches 3 times, walks never). And as mentioned up-thread, there is an oft-repeated story that he was afraid he'd seriously injure someone, given how hard he threw.

I think it's far more likely that a RHP with that big, sling-shot, side-arm delivery, throwing dirty baseballs will inevitably hit a lot of guys than that Walter Johnson was a headhunter.

Justin Masterson is kind of wild, so maybe not a good example, but he's been in the top 7 in HBP every year he's made all his starts.
   22. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: August 17, 2012 at 02:27 PM (#4210653)
People would sometimes be asked to bat while they were still on base.


I wonder if they'd have to yell, "Ghost runner," when they were heading to the batter's box.
   23. The kids disappeared, now Der-K has too much candy Posted: August 17, 2012 at 02:28 PM (#4210654)
16: Ummm, watch cricket. (Which has a much more defensive hitting approach - here, that would be because extra bases are of marginal value, it's prolonging the sequence that matters.)
   24. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: August 17, 2012 at 02:28 PM (#4210656)
Short on time today, so links and quick recaps only. In related news, I'll be out of town this weekend, so at most I'll be putting up a link tomorrow (and probably not even that). I'll try for a regulation-length post on Sunday evening, though.

Game of the day (yesterday): Rangers 10, Yankees 6. Texas took an early lead on Adrian Beltre's two-run single in the first (it was the rare play that produced two runs and an out, as Beltre was thrown out trying to stretch it). Derek Holland and Ivan Nova kept the score 2-0 until the sixth, when Texas added another pair of runs and still left the bases loaded. The Yanks struck back in the bottom of the inning with three singles producing two runs (thanks to baserunning and productive outs and stuff), followed by a game-tying homer by Andruw Jones. Holland was pulled from the game one batter latter, so Tanner Scheppers was on the mound for Russell Martin's go-ahead single.

Texas re-tied the game in the seventh on two singles and a David Murphy double, then went ahead once more on Craig Gentry's two-run single (against Joba, who's apparently back now). New York plated one in the bottom of the inning on two hits, a walk, and a forceout, but left the tying run on third, and the Rangers sealed it with two in the eighth (Beltre sac fly, Geovany Soto RBI single) and one in the ninth (Elvis Andrus RBI single).

Quite a good game, especially in the sixth and seventh innings. With its help, the Rangers have moved pretty far out of last in the excitement standings on the year - they're now #26, a solid distance ahead of now-last-place Arizona.
   25. zack Posted: August 17, 2012 at 02:37 PM (#4210670)
16: Ummm, watch cricket. (Which has a much more defensive hitting approach - here, that would be because extra bases are of marginal value, it's prolonging the sequence that matters.)


Well that and you don't have to run if you make contact, so there's not penalty for extremely weak contact.

On the topic of hawkeye, cricket uses a similar system for what seems to me should be a much more controversial call, the "leg before wicket". That call was historically very subjective, as the umpire has to determine not only where the ball bounced but if it would have struck the wicket if not intercepted by the batsman's body. Now they use a hawkeye-like system that shows where the ball bounced and projects where the ball would have travelled unimpeded. Which seems to me to be a radical difference from replay in pretty much every sport, but as far as I know everyone just accepts the CGI rendering as fact. (Perhaps it was more controversial when it was introduced, I've only known cricket in the last 10 years).
   26. just plain joe Posted: August 17, 2012 at 02:39 PM (#4210672)
Was Rudy York so bad an athlete that you would put Boog Powell in LF? The mind boggles!


I don't know how bad an athlete York was but he was not a good outfielder. He came up as a catcher but was moved to first base fairly early in his career. He only played a few games in LF and was brutal; his range factor was far below the league average. Granted this is a small sample size but for many of those years the Tigers were playing Hank Greenberg in left to get his bat and York's in the lineup at the same time.
   27. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: August 17, 2012 at 02:42 PM (#4210679)
The Phillies conspired to give Cliff Lee hope for his 3rd win of the seaon, only to dash it.

Lee gave up 3 solo HRs in the first 3 innings (Braun, Ramirez, Braun) and then proceeded to get 2 outs in the 8th with no more damage. 12 Ks, pitch count around 110. Kevin Frandsen, the offensive star with a 3 run 2B to give the Phils their slim 4-3 lead, makes an error at 3B. Time to get Lee out of the game with RH coming up. Good spot for a rested Papelbon 4 out save?

Of course not. Let's bring in Lindblom (very close to getting tagged with the moniker Lindbomb, came over in the Victorino trade). BB, BB, GS by Corey Hart. BAM! Let's chalk up a 7-4 loss. At least Lee escaped with a no decision.

   28. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: August 17, 2012 at 03:34 PM (#4210758)
The headline made me wonder how I'd never heard Honus Wagner died so young, but he played five more mostly-good years after 1912 and lived 43 more hopefully good years.

There's a story I read somewhere, about how when the later Wagner was a doddering coach for the Pirates, he'd occasionally take infield before a game, and the whole place would just get quiet, watching him. I'd've loved to see that. Apparently even the older, more drink-y Wagner still had The Good Hands.
   29. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: August 17, 2012 at 03:42 PM (#4210776)
Game of the day (last year): White Sox 8, Indians 7 (14). Of course, on a day when I don't have much time, baseball gives me the 7th-best game of 2011 so far. Of course it does.

The Sox started early, scoring one run in the first and loading the bases on an error and three singles before Ubaldo Jimenez recovered by striking out the last two hitters. They added another in the second when Alejandro de Aza tripled Gordon Beckham home. Cleveland didn't have a baserunner reach against Gavin Floyd until the fourth, but they took full advantage when he did, bringing a run home on a hit batter, a single, and a sac fly. But Chicago countered in the bottom of the inning on a solo homer by Juan Pierre.

After the four horsemen were chased off of the field, the Indians worked for another small-ball run in the fifth, when Carlos Santana reached on a bunt single (!), moved to second on a wild pitch, took third on a groundout and scored on a sac fly. The Sox scored twice in the bottom of the inning on a double by Paul Konerko, a triple by Alexi Ramirez, and a double by Tyler Flowers, the last of which chased Jimenez from the mound. Now down 5-2, the Indians rallied in the sixth with three singles and three walks, tying the score and driving Floyd from the game (the last two walks were issued by Will Ohman).

Chicago continued its extra-base hitting ways in the bottom of the sixth, with a double by Brent Morel and de Aza's second triple of the day putting them in the lead once more. Konerko followed with an RBI single to double the size of the margin. After Chris Sale worked around a leadoff walk in the seventh and Rafael Perez shut down the Sox in the bottom of the inning, Travis Hafner led off the eighth with a home run to bring the Indians back within one. Vinnie Pestano gave up a single and walk (intentional) in the eighth, but no runs, which meant that the run against Sergio Santos in the ninth (walk to Everth Carrera, single by Michael Brantly, Shin-Soo Choo hits into a force) tied the game. Pestano allowed a two-out triple to Flowers, t left him at third to send the game to extras.

Extra innings in brief:

Tenth - Cleveland goes 1-2-3; the Sox put two on with one out, but Konerko hits into a double play.

Eleventh - Jack Hannahan doubles with one out. Alexis Rios does him a couple better, tripling with none out. After a groundout and an intentional walk, Flowers lined into a double play to extend the game.

Twelfth - Asdrubal Cabrera leads off with a walk and doesn't advance. Brent Morel doubles with one out; neither does he.

Thirteenth - Cleveland loads 'em against Jesse Crain with two walks and a single, but Choo whiffs and Cabrera grounds out to leave all three. Konerko leads off with a single, and is replaced at first by two different runners - pinch runner Omar Vizquel, followed by Alexei Ramirez when he hits into a force. Ramirez later steals second, but stays there.

Fourteenth - Cleveland goes 1-2-3. Beckham doubles with one out, moves to third on Morel's single, and scores on Pierre's to end the game.

The story of the game? Extra base hits. Cleveland had two - Hannahan's double and Hafner's homer. The Sox, meanwhile, amassed eleven - Pierre's homer, five doubles (two by Morel, one each for Beckham, Flowers, and Konerko), and FIVE TRIPLES (Rios, Flowers, Ramirez, and two by De Aza). So if the triple really is the most exciting play in baseball, it's no surprise that my system loves this game.

Not that it usually complains too much about 14-inning games to begin with, of course.
   30. The kids disappeared, now Der-K has too much candy Posted: August 17, 2012 at 04:57 PM (#4210895)
Powell did play 431 games in LF in his career, though none after his age 23 season.
   31. starving to death with a full STEAGLES Posted: August 17, 2012 at 05:26 PM (#4210939)
The Phillies conspired to give Cliff Lee hope for his 3rd win of the seaon, only to dash it.

Lee gave up 3 solo HRs in the first 3 innings (Braun, Ramirez, Braun) and then proceeded to get 2 outs in the 8th with no more damage. 12 Ks, pitch count around 110. Kevin Frandsen, the offensive star with a 3 run 2B to give the Phils their slim 4-3 lead, makes an error at 3B. Time to get Lee out of the game with RH coming up. Good spot for a rested Papelbon 4 out save?

Of course not. Let's bring in Lindblom (very close to getting tagged with the moniker Lindbomb, came over in the Victorino trade). BB, BB, GS by Corey Hart. BAM! Let's chalk up a 7-4 loss. At least Lee escaped with a no decision.
i'm actually not all that worried about the bullpen right now.

i mean, the team's out of the running this year, but for as bad as the bullpen has been this year, i can't help but be hopeful about its potential next year with papelbon, lindblom, bastardo, aumont, de fratus, and diekman. there's some real gas there, and if you can get those guys completely up to speed by opening day, the bullpen could go from one of the worst in the league to in the upper third, at least.
   32. jwb Posted: August 17, 2012 at 07:09 PM (#4211056)
From what I've read of Honus Wagner, if he were alive today, he'd never miss closing time at the hotel bar at SABR conventions and he would talk baseball the whole time.
   33. JoeC Posted: August 18, 2012 at 01:10 AM (#4211203)
Huh, have any of you heard of this? It looks to me like Marco Estrada just broke the all-time record (previously held by Vida Blue) for starts in a season without a victory. I would have thought it would have been reported somewhere... I only even found it because I was looking at Cliff Lee for decent starters with low wins totals.

Link
   34. odds are meatwad is drunk Posted: August 18, 2012 at 01:39 AM (#4211209)
Joe how many does he have? Volstadt is still winless this year in 12 starts (winless since june last year)
   35. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: August 18, 2012 at 02:06 AM (#4211211)
Huh, have any of you heard of this? It looks to me like Marco Estrada just broke the all-time record (previously held by Vida Blue) for starts in a season without a victory. I would have thought it would have been reported somewhere... I only even found it because I was looking at Cliff Lee for decent starters with low wins totals.


Is this the record for most starts at the start of a season without a victory, or most winless starts overall? Because there are guys who could have eclipsed 15 starts but would not appear on the linked list (if they won a start after reaching 15 straight - which could happen with Estrada if he wins a game between now and the end of the season). In other words, if it's the latter, then Estrada's record could well be temporary.

   36. JoeC Posted: August 18, 2012 at 02:39 AM (#4211212)
Right, it's the latter, good point. Apparently Matt Keough went 23 winless starts in 1979 before picking up a W in September. Only 7 pitchers have exceeded 15, even so; two more would put Estrada into a tie for third on that list.

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