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Monday, July 25, 2011

Singer: Brian Wilson excels in situations with smallest margins for error

The Jerome Holtzman effect is a fictional non-scientific phenomenon in the baseball universe!

Nevertheless, not all saves are created equal. In an attempt to distinguish quality from quantity, a sliding points scale was used for rating closers: 5-3-1 for one-, two- and three-run saves.

...Of course, calling any save “easy” is like calling any doughnut low in calories; it just isn’t. Yet saves’ varying degrees of difficulty correspondingly differ in how they impact the closer and his team.

A save is awarded, obviously, when closing out a game in which your team leads by no more than three runs. The specialized use of closers today—that one, all-important, ninth inning—could mean dealing with the potential tying run no closer than having him in the hole.

...Closers feed on pressure. Their ineffectiveness pitching in non-save situations is a curious phenomenon. For some, is there an equivalent leniency when protecting a three-run lead? If so, do some managers actually feel more secure when waving for their closers in a one-run game?

Colorado’s Jim Tracy doesn’t buy it, despite the tendency of some relievers to be unable to escape jams of their own making.

“I’m still much more comfortable bringing a closer into a three-run game. There’s more room for error,” Tracy said. “Otherwise, you’re one dislocated pitch from being tied. A three-run lead gives them a chance to make a boo-boo. It’s good when you’re allowed to make a mistake.”

Repoz Posted: July 25, 2011 at 08:23 PM | 43 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: giants, history, projections, sabermetrics

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   1. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: July 25, 2011 at 08:40 PM (#3884979)
Closers feed on pressure. Their ineffectiveness pitching in non-save situations is a curious phenomenon.

Have more ambitious minds than mine ever proven this?
   2. Guapo Posted: July 25, 2011 at 08:51 PM (#3884998)
I read "Singer Brian Wilson" in the headline and now I've got "Caroline, No" stuck in my head.
   3. Nasty Nate Posted: July 25, 2011 at 08:54 PM (#3885001)
Closers feed on pressure. Their ineffectiveness pitching in non-save situations is a curious phenomenon.


It seems there is a notion that closers have a unique psychology in which they thrive with the game kind-of on the line, but not when it is really on the line, i.e. tie game on the road in the 9th or later....

So, according to some muddled thinkig, the supposed closer mentality is an asset w/ precisely a 1-3 run lead, but a liability with a bigger lead, a deficit, or in a tie game.
   4. Jacob Posted: July 25, 2011 at 09:04 PM (#3885020)
A save is awarded, obviously, when closing out a game in which your team leads by no more than three runs.


There's a bit more to it than that. I didn't read TFA. I hope I didn't miss anything good.
   5. Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: July 25, 2011 at 09:06 PM (#3885023)

So, according to some muddled thinkig, the supposed closer mentality is an asset w/ precisely a 1-3 run lead


Save is their money stat. Would you say you are more or less focused on a task when you are sure it will be prominently featured in your performance appraisal?
   6. hardrain Posted: July 25, 2011 at 09:08 PM (#3885026)
#2 - same with me, but the song in my head is Sloop John B.
   7. PreservedFish Posted: July 25, 2011 at 09:09 PM (#3885027)
Closers come on like they're peaceful, but inside they're so uptight.
   8. Repoz Posted: July 25, 2011 at 09:13 PM (#3885029)
I read "Singer Brian Wilson" in the headline

Sorry, but it had to be done. It's my sandbox!
   9. A triple short of the cycle Posted: July 25, 2011 at 09:22 PM (#3885036)
Save is their money stat.

Would a closer rather get a save than a win? (How about a non-closer?) To the closer who doesn't like to pitch in tie games on the road because it's not a save situation, I would say, it's a *win* situation.
   10. Misirlou has S.C.M.O.D.S Posted: July 25, 2011 at 09:27 PM (#3885041)
I read "Singer Brian Wilson" in the headline and now I've got "Caroline, No" stuck in my head.


I for one just don't get Pet Sounds. Yes, I know Paul McCartney thinks it's the greatest album of all time. Sloop John B is a great song. Wouldn't it be Nice is a nice, catchy pop tune. God Only Knows makes a good theme song for a show about polygamy. The rest of the album just doesn't work for me. Must be a character flaw or something. Every few years I try to give it a listen to see if I have acquired any taste, but sadly, no.
   11. Jacob Posted: July 25, 2011 at 09:32 PM (#3885044)
I for one just don't get Pet Sounds.


Do you like any of the Beach Boys' albums? Or, do you just not like the Beach Boys all that much?
   12. Nasty Nate Posted: July 25, 2011 at 09:38 PM (#3885047)
Save is their money stat. Would you say you are more or less focused on a task when you are sure it will be prominently featured in your performance appraisal?


Do you think closers aren't motivated or focused on those somewhat rare occasions when they are brought into tie games in extras on the road? I don't, I was kind of poking fun at the weird perceptions of closers' psychologies that exist.
   13. PreservedFish Posted: July 25, 2011 at 09:51 PM (#3885054)
I didn't really get Pet Sounds until I realized how radical and strange the sound is. On first listen it's just sweet pop. "I Know There's an Answer" is my favorite example, right in the middle it breaks down into a saxophone/banjo duet. A strange pitter-patter running throughout "Sloop John B," another weird pitter-patter that sounds either like raindrops or horseshoes in "God Only Knows," the accordions in "Wouldn't it Be Nice." The whole album is chock full of this stuff, layered on top of some of the best pop ever written.

I think a good listen to "Good Vibrations" - which is REALLY weird - set me in the right direction as far as listening for these details.
   14. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: July 25, 2011 at 10:13 PM (#3885063)
I didn't really get Pet Sounds until I realized how radical and strange the sound is

I hate to play the "you had to be there" card, but...ya kinda had to be there. At the time (early 1966), the sound WAS quite radical
   15. Bob Evans Posted: July 25, 2011 at 10:19 PM (#3885065)
Wild Honey and Smile were better, but Pet Sounds is really good too.

Edit: Endless Summer was also better, but kind of a cheat.
   16. Misirlou has S.C.M.O.D.S Posted: July 25, 2011 at 10:35 PM (#3885073)
I hate to play the "you had to be there" card, but...ya kinda had to be there. At the time (early 1966), the sound WAS quite radical


Oh, I get that part. I understand the groundbreaking, the influence, all that. But as entertainment, it just doesn't do it for me. All the funny backround sounds on Caroline, No...cool, innovative, all that. But it's an annoying song. Much of the album is like that for me.
   17. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: July 25, 2011 at 10:42 PM (#3885075)
Edit: Endless Summer was also better, but kind of a cheat.

since it was a greatest hits album, it's more that KIND OF a cheat. BTW, I think this album is another good compilation.
   18. Everybody Loves Tyrus Raymond Posted: July 25, 2011 at 10:46 PM (#3885078)
I for one just don't get Pet Sounds.


Smoke some weed and listen to it.
   19. BDC Posted: July 25, 2011 at 10:53 PM (#3885080)
I'm among those that doesn't grok the Beach Boys either. I too understand their importance, but it's an importance I have to talk myself into appreciating. I suppose there is no accounting for taste. I have been surfing YouTube this past year and bookmarking interesting 1960s pop – listening a lot to a whole range of things, The Kinks and Herman's Hermits and the Turtles, folksier groups like The Seekers, for that matter. The Honeycombs, "Have I the Right," that to me is quite a song. I never look for Beach Boys' songs, couldn't be bothered. They lack some kind of energy that I like from pop and rock songs.

There, I've got that off my chest.
   20. Misirlou has S.C.M.O.D.S Posted: July 25, 2011 at 11:00 PM (#3885084)
suppose there is no accounting for taste. I have been surfing YouTube this past year and bookmarking interesting 1960s pop – listening a lot to a whole range of things, The Kinks and Herman's Hermits and the Turtles, folksier groups like The Seekers, for that matter.


Be sure to bookmark Buffalo Springfield
   21. zenbitz Posted: July 25, 2011 at 11:02 PM (#3885085)
Closers do it for Coffee, only.
   22. zenbitz Posted: July 25, 2011 at 11:05 PM (#3885089)
and
Of course, calling any save “easy” is like calling any doughnut low in calories


Doughnuts are lower in calories than bagels. Even without cream cheese.

While that was a throw away comment, it's actually somewhat illustrative here - "easy" like "low in calories" is relative.
   23. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: July 25, 2011 at 11:12 PM (#3885092)
I for one just don't get Pet Sounds.

Smoke some weed and listen to it.


That's kind of a low bar, isn't it? I mean that would also work as an argument for The Phantom Menace as the greatest movie of all time...
   24. Steve Treder Posted: July 25, 2011 at 11:27 PM (#3885098)
Oh, I get that part. I understand the groundbreaking, the influence, all that. But as entertainment, it just doesn't do it for me. All the funny backround sounds on Caroline, No...cool, innovative, all that. But it's an annoying song. Much of the album is like that for me.

Agreed. I love me some Beach Boys, but attempting to create a Beach Boys concept album was like attempting to eat soup with a fork. The Beach Boys were a peerless three-minute singles band, perfectly made for AM car radio.

Beach Boys's singles such as Help Me Rhonda, I Get Around, Surfin' USA, and the superb Don't Worry Baby are as good as pop music ear candy gets. Attempting to push the sound and the ideas in a different direction than that wasn't among (that) Brian Wilson's best inspirations.
   25. Steve Treder Posted: July 25, 2011 at 11:30 PM (#3885102)
The Honeycombs, "Have I the Right," that to me is quite a song.

Terrific song, a whole lot of fun. I remember some critic one time describing it as "Neil Sedaka on acid." Just love the thump-thump-thumping sound driving the rhythm on the chorus: legend has it they got that effect by recording a bunch of people marching in place on an echoey enclosed fire-exit staircase.
   26. Misirlou has S.C.M.O.D.S Posted: July 25, 2011 at 11:36 PM (#3885106)
Attempting to push the sound and the ideas in a different direction than that wasn't among (that) Brian Wilson's best inspirations.


So, does that mean I won't have to give up my junior birdman secret decoder ring and BTF thong for admitting that?
   27. vortex of dissipation Posted: July 25, 2011 at 11:45 PM (#3885113)
The Honeycombs, "Have I the Right," that to me is quite a song.


The first single my Mum ever let me buy for myself, back in 1964, and still a huge fave...
   28. vortex of dissipation Posted: July 25, 2011 at 11:50 PM (#3885116)
Terrific song, a whole lot of fun. I remember some critic one time describing it as "Neil Sedaka on acid." Just love the thump-thump-thumping sound driving the rhythm on the chorus: legend has it they got that effect by recording a bunch of people marching in place on an echoey enclosed fire-exit staircase.


Joe Meek was as inventive a producer as there was back in that time period. The Tornadoes' "Telstar" was another production of his that's still pretty stunning. Unfortunately, he was mentally unstable, and eventually killed himself and his landlady inn a murder/suicide. But many of his records still sound unique...
   29. tfbg9 Posted: July 26, 2011 at 12:05 AM (#3885125)
10, yes it is a character flaw.
   30. Steve Treder Posted: July 26, 2011 at 12:12 AM (#3885132)
The Tornadoes' "Telstar" was another production of his that's still pretty stunning.

Ain't that the truth.
   31. Eric L Posted: July 26, 2011 at 12:47 AM (#3885143)
Anne "Honey" Lantree was drummer on "have i the right"'and babe...at least by the british standard.
   32. tshipman Posted: July 26, 2011 at 01:03 AM (#3885153)
Attempting to push the sound and the ideas in a different direction than that wasn't among (that) Brian Wilson's best inspirations.


I really disagree. In an album that is so filled with sound, there are so many stunning moments of silence on the album, so many great noises layered on top of all the beautiful music. Like a lot of really great albums, you have to find a way into it. There's nothing wrong with you if you don't like it, but there's a lot there to love.
   33. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: July 26, 2011 at 01:03 AM (#3885155)
Be sure to bookmark Buffalo Springfield

you have exquisite taste, my friend . This is their best
   34. Misirlou has S.C.M.O.D.S Posted: July 26, 2011 at 01:26 AM (#3885180)
you have exquisite taste, my friend


There are certain songs which just ooze the 60's. Something about the sounds. Jimmy Hendrix "All Along the Watchtower", Janis Joplin "Piece of my Heart", Cream "Sunshine of your Love"... "Bluebird", while not as well know as the other 3, has that same effect for me. I can almost taste the psychedelia.
   35. Jay Z Posted: July 26, 2011 at 01:55 AM (#3885226)
I didn't really get Pet Sounds until I realized how radical and strange the sound is. On first listen it's just sweet pop. "I Know There's an Answer" is my favorite example, right in the middle it breaks down into a saxophone/banjo duet. A strange pitter-patter running throughout "Sloop John B," another weird pitter-patter that sounds either like raindrops or horseshoes in "God Only Knows," the accordions in "Wouldn't it Be Nice." The whole album is chock full of this stuff, layered on top of some of the best pop ever written.

I think a good listen to "Good Vibrations" - which is REALLY weird - set me in the right direction as far as listening for these details.


What "Good Vibrations" has going for it is that it rocks some along with everything else, and Pet Sounds really doesn't. Most of Pet Sounds is chamber pop, which certain people really eat up - the idea of the auteur. Critic types are disproportionatly represented among fans of Pet Sounds, as distinguished from rock music fans who don't happen to be critics.

There are a thousand different bands that can be someone's favorite band, where the same person would like Revolver as well. Pet Sounds is going to appeal to a much smaller group - it's just more of an extreme.

As for myself, other than the most popular songs from Pet Sounds, I'd sooner listen to the early Beach Boys or the post-Vibrations interesting tracks.
   36. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: July 26, 2011 at 02:22 AM (#3885259)
I'd sooner listen to the early Beach Boys or the post-Vibrations interesting tracks.

like this
   37. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: July 26, 2011 at 02:49 AM (#3885290)
What "Good Vibrations" has going for it is that it rocks some along with everything else, and Pet Sounds really doesn't.

remember that Good Vibrations was intitially going to included on Pet Sounds, until Wilson decided to hold it back
   38. Ron J Posted: July 26, 2011 at 02:53 AM (#3885297)
Old data, but I have it handy and don't feel like digging now. From 1997.

Easy save: first batter faced is not the tying run and reliever pitches one inning or less.

Tough save: reliever comes in with tying run on base.

Regular save: All others.

Easy        Regular     Tough        Overall
League  SV  OP  
%   SV  OP  %   SV  OP  %    SV   OP  %
AL     234 258 91  273 379 72   86 231 37   593  868 68
NL     256 271 94  269 399 67   74 190 39   599  860 70
MLB    490 529 93  542 778 70  160 421 38  1192 1728 69 


1997 (Closers being defined as pitchers with 25+ save opportunities)

Easy          Regular       Tough
          SV ATT        SV ATT        SV ATT
Closers  436 460 .948  241 312 .772   61 112 .545
Other    128 166 .771  204 393 .519   69 264 .261
Overall  564 626 .901  445 705 .631  130 376 .346
Closer
%     .735          .542          .298 


Usage by save attempt type.

Easy Regular Tough
Closers .520 .353    .127
Other   .202 .478    .321
Overall .367 .413    .220 


Less than 30% of the realy tough jobs were handed to the closers in 1997. And that number sure hasn't gone up.
At that, there are big differences by team. Urbina had 11 tough save attempts, Todd Worrell had none. (Nobody uses their closer as Urbina was used in 1997 any long)

There were 23 pitchers with 25+ save attempts. They combined for 61 tough saves. 3 pitchers (Urbina, Hoffman and Hernendez) had 20 between them.
   39. True Blue Posted: July 26, 2011 at 04:43 AM (#3885374)
I remember getting the double album soundtrack for The Who's "The Kids are Alright" in 1979 and being shocked in the two page essay that Brian Wilson was one of these great songwriters that Pete Townshend was compared to. I had always figured the Beach Boys did some catchy surf songs but legendary great composer? Nah, in the 1960s all I heard was the top 40 singles. "Pet sounds" has its enjoyable aspects but I don't go crazy about it or the various forms that "Smile" has come with over the years.
   40. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: July 26, 2011 at 05:14 AM (#3885405)
I mean that would also work as an argument for The Phantom Menace as the greatest movie of all time...


I have watched this movie stoned, and it has been my experience that it is only more annoying in this state of mind.
   41. S.F. Giangst Posted: July 26, 2011 at 07:23 AM (#3885536)
A points system? Isn't that precious...

Shouldn't it just be (WPA available minus WPA actual for all save situations) divided by Save Opportunities?
   42. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: July 26, 2011 at 12:16 PM (#3885572)
“I’m still much more comfortable bringing a closer into a three-run game. There’s more room for error,” Tracy said. “Otherwise, you’re one dislocated pitch from being tied. A three-run lead gives them a chance to make a boo-boo. It’s good when you’re allowed to make a mistake.” 


Not that Jim Tracy ever makes mistakes, according to Jim Tracy.
   43. Bob Evans Posted: July 26, 2011 at 01:34 PM (#3885610)
Nah, in the 1960s all I heard was the top 40 singles.

Many of those songs were pretty great, and very few of them were mere trifles. That's a track record of greatness (hence my plug for Endless Summer).

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