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Tuesday, February 19, 2008

The Bad News Cubs: The Great RBI Statistic

STAT!...Get that RBI Machine Gun McGurney in here!

It’s become fashionable amongst statheads to dismiss the RBI as useless. This view has become so commonplace, such unanimous dogma… you would think we should do away with it altogether. If a guy knocks in three runs in a game, he should be more concerned with the state of his OPS, and not celebrating.

Statheads love to rip Joe Morgan, a longtime proponent of the RBI… and hall of fame player. He contributed significantly to championship clubs. Morgan’s a hall of fame PLAYER and not a geek studying fictional numbers with no relationship to winning baseball games. He may have completely ###### up in criticizing Billy Beane for ‘writing Moneyball’, which Beane obviously didn’t do… but he’s not wrong about the RBI… or which teams win in the postseason… teams that can manufacture runs.

But the statheads know better. They know that RBI’s are ‘team dependent’ and aren’t a fair evaluator of talent. This means that RBI opportunities are not distributed equally amongst all hitters. Specifically, a hitter on a good team is going to get more RBI’s than a similar hitter on a bad one, right? The numbers should bare this out. Statheads love stats… and yet, the stats, the numbers… their love… tell us something different about the RBI. How disconcerting. The numbers tell us that the best hitters have the most RBI’s no matter where they play. A good hitter can have a bad year… and a bad player a hot one… but through the years, the best hitters collect the most RBI’s period… no matter where they play.

...A single baseball player cannot win entire games over fictional replacement players. There are no win shares in the standings. On offense, all a hitter can do to affect winning is to score or knock in RUNS. If I were evaluating acquisitions, I’d be looking at a guy’s runs+RBI’s average through the years.

Repoz Posted: February 19, 2008 at 12:56 PM | 375 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: sabermetrics

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   201. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 01:16 AM (#2696127)
Now, if the idea is to interest you, I dunno? Should I jangle my car keys or something?


If the idea is to interest you, Dan, should I put on some quasi-papal outfit and look queer in a photograph?
   202. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 01:16 AM (#2696128)
Who out there doesn't know that Tim Hudson is 'Huddy'? What, it's okay to say A-Rod or El Duque, but not Huddy?
   203. Dan Szymborski Posted: February 21, 2008 at 01:21 AM (#2696135)
If the idea is to interest you, Dan, should I put on some quasi-papal outfit and look queer in a photograph?

Ah, so you're not only retarded, but you're a retarded homophobe?
   204. galaxieboi Posted: February 21, 2008 at 01:23 AM (#2696137)
I'd never heard Tim Hudson referred to as 'Huddy' before.

The statheads have mocked the hell out of me for placing great value on defense. Statheads give greater value to stats that are easy to count and measure.


I don't know what 'statheads' you chat with, but all the ones I know (including the guys running my other favorite baseball blog) put a ton of value on defense.
   205. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: February 21, 2008 at 01:30 AM (#2696144)
Anything beyond that is just Baseball Prospectus, Bill James, or some folks at this site taking your money.


Bill James would tell you the exact same thing about the 2007 Cubs' catching situation that I have.


Are you saying you're wrong?
   206. Peoria Dave Posted: February 21, 2008 at 01:41 AM (#2696149)
Am I missing something here?


Yes. I don't have enough time to fill you in on all you've missed. I am going to die in about 35 years and we'd only be touching the surface in that amount of time. Find someone who is only 8 or 9. They might have enough life left to live to clue you in.
   207. CrosbyBird Posted: February 21, 2008 at 01:42 AM (#2696151)
What I take exception to is the replacement level garbage and allotting wins to individual players.

I think the concept of replacement level is a pretty good one in the abstract. All it really does is provide a baseline (and different systems have a different idea of what replacement level means) for comparing players with a wider graph than setting an average player to zero.

In terms of "team X could just call up a replacement level LF and have the same production at a fraction of the cost," it's not really valuable because team X might not have a player that can handle LF at replacement level. It's much less useful than saying "team X could get the same production from specific minor-leaguer Z in their system and spend that money keeping stud player N that they let go."

Part of your problem with statheads is that you have some misconceptions of what "they" believe.

I don't know too many statheads who will be pushing the Cubs to play Cedeno with his .277 career OBP unless they hate the Cubs. There's a lot of ribbing at Eckstein's expense because he's the type of player that sportswriters orgasm over, but he's a solid defensive SS with reasonable offense for the position. I don't see to many people who think he's a bad player at all. The Barrett trade was primarily criticized because of what Barrett had done from 2004-2006 offensively... everyone knew he was a terrible defensive catcher but if he hit like those three years, his bat would be worth carrying his glove (and his attitude).

My criticism of statland at large is their ridiculing of the things that 'aren't found in the box scores'. They don't believe they exist

That's simply not true. In fact, the box score is only the beginning of the analysis. Most "advanced" stats use things that don't show up in any box score like park factor, league adjustment, or other outside calculations like win probability or game state.

The reason for most of the most controversial stathead claims like "clutch ability does not exist" or "batting average is a poor indicator of value" or "RBI are bad indicators of individual value" or "the pitcher has less control over balls in play that most people realize" is primarily because someone, somewhere studied it and published their results somewhere.

That's why I love the simple (WP+PB)/G. 7 of the last 8 world series teams have featured a catcher at or near the top in this stat.

Posada's one of the worst catchers for the passed ball in baseball. I don't know where to get WP numbers for individual catchers, but certainly from 1999-2001 and in 2003, his poor plate blocking skills didn't hurt the Yankees. Damien Miller's 10 passed balls in 121 games didn't hurt the D'Backs.

Even for 2007, the difference in passed balls is pretty small except at the very worst. 13 catchers who played in 110+ games last year had between 2 and 6 passed balls. Torrealba and Varitek both had 4. Wild pitches are even more evenly distributed. There are literally over 100 pitchers with between 2 and 6 wild pitches in 2007.
   208. CrosbyBird Posted: February 21, 2008 at 01:47 AM (#2696155)
The statheads have mocked the hell out of me for placing great value on defense.

Maybe ten years ago. The perception of defensive value has come a long, long way in the stathead community.
   209. Chris Dial Posted: February 21, 2008 at 01:55 AM (#2696160)
THAC0 hasn't been in D&D;since Second Edition. Don't bring that weak stuff in here.

Nice use of the 0 in THAC0. Forgot that little piece. I figured I'd go with that rather than the first set of books I owned.

I'm presently in a grand D&D;3.5 experiment (rotating DM on 4-6 week campaign legs, and rotating PCs). Something to keep us busy until this summer when 4th Edition comes out. Already pre-ordered on Amazon.com because I may be a big loser, but I'm a thrifty big loser (it's like 40% off if you buy the three core books).


That's all junk anyway. AD&D;is the only good D&D;.
   210. Chris Dial Posted: February 21, 2008 at 01:57 AM (#2696163)
It may be obsolete, but I still automatically put in the 0. Really, my D&D;instincts crystallized quite awhile ago, since I still tend to use the original order of the stats (STR-INT-WIS-DEX-CON-CHA) instead of the current order, which puts the physical stats all together. It's a little embarassing, since I actually work at the company that makes the game. It's not every job where you can get mocked for that sort of thing.


That is SOOOOOOOOOO cool. Do you see Gary in the halls? I guess he doesn't work there.

I still would do them that way, and from what I've read, AD&D;is still the best version.
   211. Chris Dial Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:00 AM (#2696164)
I'd never heard Tim Hudson referred to as 'Huddy' before.

Watch a Braves telecast.
   212. CrosbyBird Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:06 AM (#2696167)
AD&D;is the only good D&D;.

Part of me is as fearful of change as the next guy, but pretty much every edition of D&D;has been a remarkable improvement in the system. I'll spare the people here the gory details, but Wizards of the Coast definitely knows what they're doing.
   213. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:08 AM (#2696169)
Ah, so you're not only retarded, but you're a retarded homophobe?


I hate when people call others 'retarded'. It's a pet peeve of mine. I hated as a child when kids made fun of the retarded kids at school.

As for homophobia... I have many gay friends and I'm not the least bit homophobic. They would say the same thing I do... that you're wearing a godawful, quasi-papal costume... and look really queer.
   214. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:10 AM (#2696170)
Pops,

Bill James has done a lot of good work. Even he would tell you that Win Shares are excessive and ultimately exist to both perform solely as an intellectual exercise and to put money in his pocket. He deserves to get paid after all the years of the abstract.
   215. BeanoCook Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:13 AM (#2696172)
In Roger Maris's 2 MVP seasons, he had 11 more R + RBI than Mantle, and an OPS about 70 points lower.


I wonder what Jeromy Burnitz would have done in front of Mantle? Maybe 22 more R + RBI than Mantle?
   216. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:21 AM (#2696173)
Crosby, is there any site with (WP+PB)/G numbers that go back further than 2004? I'd like to see them.

The Yankees haven't won the world series since 2000. I'd be curious to see Jorge Posada's (WP+PB)/G numbers along with his catcher's era numbers through the years.

In baseball, I always study what World Series teams have in common. That's my baseline.

Damien Miller was a fine catcher for many years whose performance has started to decline the last few. I'd be curious how many of the 10 passed balls in 2001 were Randy Johnson sliders.

I'm glad to hear that stat land has come a 'long, long' way when it comes to defense. It's about time. I wonder if they'll ever get it right at catcher.

Crosby, how many wins a year could a terrible defensive catcher such as Michael Barrett cost a team? Why did the Cubs and Padres lose so many more games when he started vs. the other guys last year? Your answer will reflect how much progress statland has made. Hopefully I'll see some answers beyond 'correlation, not causation'.
   217. Peoria Dave Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:23 AM (#2696174)
I have many gay friends


You sound just like the racist who says he has many black friends. You are what you are and who your friends are have nothing to do with it. It just means your many gay friends are unaware that you are a homophobe. A retarded one.
   218. Hal Chase Headley Lamarr Hoyt Wilhelm (ACE1242) Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:24 AM (#2696175)
The only semblance of a brain here is Crosby.

Crosbybird, I hope you'll remember us little people who knew you when.
   219. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:24 AM (#2696177)
I'd never heard Tim Hudson referred to as 'Huddy' before.


I didn't realize that this isn't commonly known. I lived in the Bay Area (wink, Dan) when he was there and everyone called him Huddy. I thought even all the ESPN guys say Huddy nationally, no?
   220. BourbonSamurai Is a Lazy Nogoodnik Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:26 AM (#2696180)
Tim Hudson has been called Huddy for about as long as I can remember him. It's a dumb nickname, but what are you gonna do.

I decided to read this thread and honestly, I don't really have a clue what is being argued here anymore.

Is it just about the wild pitches/passed balls thing? Because it seems like wild pitches are part of what makes a catcher good defensively, but no more than, say, errors for a first baseman.

I have been held aloft by Larry Bigbie's floating hand while I type this.
   221. Peoria Dave Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:27 AM (#2696181)
In baseball, I always study what World Series teams have in common. That's my baseline.


You call what you're doing studying? The people you hate for coming up with new ideas about this game are the ones who study this game. You can disrespect their findings all you want, but don't disrespect the effort they've put into it by comparing what you do to what they do as if you are intellectually equal to them.
   222. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:33 AM (#2696185)
You sound just like the racist who says he has many black friends. You are what you are and who your friends are have nothing to do with it. It just means your many gay friends are unaware that you are a homophobe. A retarded one.


Oh my god. You really could use a gay friend... a drink... and not being so uptight and quasi-PC.

And in your enlightened state of making social claims about my existence without any basis in fact, how does the down syndrome community feel about your use of the word 'retarded'?
   223. BourbonSamurai Is a Lazy Nogoodnik Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:35 AM (#2696187)
One thing I will say for this thread is that it's made me want to find some die and roll up a D&D;character, which I don't think I've done outside of the occasional pass at Neverwinter Nights since 1995.

Arise, Reno, you long-dead Level 22 White Robe Wizard! Reclaim your mastery of the conclave! Cast haste upon Jack Cust!
   224. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:45 AM (#2696203)
You call what you're doing studying? The people you hate for coming up with new ideas about this game are the ones who study this game. You can disrespect their findings all you want, but don't disrespect the effort they've put into it by comparing what you do to what they do as if you are intellectually equal to them.


Are you crying as you write this? It 'feels' that way. Dave, you should head into Chi-Town... get a good steak, go to Wrigley... cruise Lake Shore Drive. If this chat isn't fun for you, and you suddenly feel representative of gays and blacks... leave.
   225. Misirlou is on hiding to nowhere Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:49 AM (#2696206)
Nice quick edit there BNC. Chung Lee's?
   226. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:50 AM (#2696207)
I'm glad to hear that stat land has come a 'long, long' way when it comes to defense. It's about time. I wonder if they'll ever get it right at catcher.

Dewan, David Pinto, Chris Dial, Mitchell Lichtman (MGL) are some of the more prominent contributors. Some googling should reveal background on their systems.

Also, Tom Tango (sometimes Tango Tiger) puts together a database of fan scouting reports that are is quite interesting.

EDIT: and this stuff has been around for years
   227. CrosbyBird Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:50 AM (#2696208)
Crosbybird, I hope you'll remember us little people who knew you when.

Shut your mouth and kiss my ring.

Seriously, BNC, I'm a bright guy, but my baseball knowledge pales in comparison to some of the people here, and it's by far my favorite sport. There are probably 50 people who post regularly on here that have forgotten more about baseball and/or statistics than I'll never know.

Crosby, how many wins a year could a terrible defensive catcher such as Michael Barrett cost a team?

Compared to what baseline? An average catcher? A mediocre catcher? A great catcher? Barrett is lousy but it's not like he's historically poor as a fielder.

I can only speak based on what I've read, but I believe that the worst catchers in baseball from a fielding perspective cost on the order of 10-15 runs over a year when compared to an average catcher. How those runs are distributed and how the surrounding players perform is going to make a big difference in how many losses that translates into in the standings.

A big problem with thinking of how many "wins" a player costs is that pretty much no baseball game is decided by one player. Even the most lopsided win you could imagine still is divided among the whole team.

Take the absurd example of a pitcher pitching a perfect 27-strikeout game while hitting three solo HR while the rest of his team never reaches base. He contributed the most to that game, but the catcher contributed a little by not making any errors. Most games are not nearly so close.

When a terrible catcher throws a ball into centerfield that should have the runner easily to end the game, and then the team loses in the next AB, the catcher contributed to that loss but you can't pin the whole thing on him. His offense could have scored more runs, making his play meaningless, or the pitcher could have gotten the next guy out.

Why did the Cubs and Padres lose so many more games when he started vs. the other guys last year? Your answer will reflect how much progress statland has made.

I can't look it up right now (food's here), but I'll return to this.
   228. Chris Dial Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:57 AM (#2696212)
I wonder if they'll ever get it right at catcher.

I did some elaborate research (mostly moving away from CERA) checking on Keith Woolner's "Catcher as a Field General". It's in the archives here.
   229. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:59 AM (#2696214)
Nice quick edit there BNC. Chung Lee's?


Not my words, Misirlou, someone else's... making fun of the fact that my girlfriend is Filipina. As I'm sure you read, they had interesting descriptives of her sexual organs as well.

I edited the comment because ultimately, and despite Peoria Dave's view of me, I'd rather see less racial BS out there than more. And on homophobia, feel free to tell Dave that I find the best clubs to be half straight / half gay, not all one way or the other.
   230. Chris Dial Posted: February 21, 2008 at 03:01 AM (#2696216)
Part of me is as fearful of change as the next guy, but pretty much every edition of D&D;has been a remarkable improvement in the system. I'll spare the people here the gory details, but Wizards of the Coast definitely knows what they're doing.

Well, I think Donkey Kong was the greatest video game.

I just think the newer Editions of D&D;have gone, well, overboard in trying to outcool themselves.
   231. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 03:02 AM (#2696217)
Ah, it's so nice when you're responsible for the best thread... to see one of the chiefs around here, Chris Dial... anxiously keeping tabs on my every word. That's what's called recognition. No one entertains in the baseball blogosphere quite like ol' BadNewsCubs. Everyone wants to see what he'll say next.

Dave, before you call me an ego maniac, along with a racist and homophobe... you need to realize how much fun I have in these threads.
   232. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 03:05 AM (#2696220)
Well, I think Donkey Kong was the greatest video game.


I always liked Contra, Tecmo Bowl, and Mike Tyson's Punchout myself.
   233. Shock Posted: February 21, 2008 at 03:06 AM (#2696221)
As for homophobia... I have many gay friends


It would have been funnier if you had said "I'm not a homophobe ... my wife is gay!"
   234. BourbonSamurai Is a Lazy Nogoodnik Posted: February 21, 2008 at 03:06 AM (#2696223)

Dave, before you call me an ego maniac, along with a racist and homophobe... you need to realize how much fun I have in these threads.


Are any of these things exclusive of any others? I could see hoe being a racist homophobe might be a blast, if one didn't have a conscience.
   235. Dan Szymborski Posted: February 21, 2008 at 03:26 AM (#2696233)
What kind of D&D;character would Bad News be? Is there an alignment called Incoherent Evil? And just imagine the weapons and agic! The Vorpal Staff of Ex Post Facto! The Adamant Sceptre of Numbskullery! Summon Dumb Argument!
   236. BourbonSamurai Is a Lazy Nogoodnik Posted: February 21, 2008 at 03:30 AM (#2696236)
Dude, Bad News is pretty clearly chaotic neutral. His answers are whatever amuses him most at the time.
   237. Chris Dial Posted: February 21, 2008 at 03:32 AM (#2696238)
Ah, it's so nice when you're responsible for the best thread... to see one of the chiefs around here, Chris Dial... anxiously keeping tabs on my every word. That's what's called recognition. No one entertains in the baseball blogosphere quite like ol' BadNewsCubs. Everyone wants to see what he'll say next.

I'm actually here to see if Monty is going to offer me some D&D;stuff, and the D&D;talk.

And I did the Anti-Stathead bit over a decade ago...your act is sooo played.

"Dylan Bumbarger
More options Apr 11 1998, 2:00 am

Newsgroups: alt.sports.baseball.sea-mariners
From: dbumb...@ix.netcom.com (Dylan Bumbarger)
Date: 1998/04/11
Subject: Re: Weekly Statheadosity Pays No Attention to Sample Size
Reply to author | Forward | Print | Individual message | Show original | Report this message | Find messages by this author

"Chris Dial" <acdial<nospam>@intrex.net> wrote:

:>I realize this pains statheads, but batting average does count.

:Shure, but his slugging average didn't increase because he hit with more
:power. His SLG went up because his BA went up. He is just hitting more
:singles, not with more power.


Again, so what? Why does it matter if it's because of hitting singles
or hitting with power? His slugging percentage went up.


:And leave me out of the stathead camp. I only use stats for evil...


Which explains the post, I guess.


:Label me Anti-stathead, as opposed the normal other camp of non-stathead. "
   238. AJMcCringleberry Posted: February 21, 2008 at 03:43 AM (#2696243)
I hate these stupid statheads that use RBI+RS and (WP+PB)/G. Watch a game sometime, losers.
   239. GotowarMissAgnes Posted: February 21, 2008 at 03:43 AM (#2696244)
"bear out" not "bare out"
Not that there's anything wrong with that.
   240. Nineto Lezcano needs to get his shit together (CW) Posted: February 21, 2008 at 03:44 AM (#2696245)
What kind of D&D;character would Bad News be? Is there an alignment called Incoherent Evil? And just imagine the weapons and agic! The Vorpal Staff of Ex Post Facto! The Adamant Sceptre of Numbskullery! Summon Dumb Argument!


Tasha's Hideous Laughter

Enchantment (Compulsion) [ Mind-Affecting ]

Level: Brd 1, Sor/Wiz 2
Components: V, S, M
Casting Time: 1 standard action
Range: Close (25 ft. + 5 ft./2 levels)
Target: One creature; see text
Duration: 1 round/level
Saving Throw: Will negates
Spell Resistance: Yes

This spell afflicts the subject with uncontrollable laughter. It collapses into gales of manic laughter, falling prone. The subject can take no actions while laughing, but is not considered helpless. After the spell ends, it can act normally.

A creature with an Intelligence score of 2 or lower is not affected. A creature whose type is different from the caster’s receives a +4 bonus on its saving throw, because humor doesn’t "translate" well.

Material Component: Tiny tarts that are thrown at the target and a feather that is waved in the air.
   241. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: February 21, 2008 at 03:50 AM (#2696250)
That's nothing. You should see me talk about Magic: the Gathering!

Do you work in the Magic division of Wizards? I'm hopelessly addicted to the game.
   242. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 03:54 AM (#2696253)
And I did the Anti-Stathead bit over a decade ago...your act is sooo played.


That line is actually cute. I like that. Dan, you could learn some panache from Chris.

Seriously, BNC, I'm a bright guy, but my baseball knowledge pales in comparison to some of the people here, and it's by far my favorite sport. There are probably 50 people who post regularly on here that have forgotten more about baseball and/or statistics than I'll never know.


Crosby, and which one of them had the Rocks in the World Series? By the way, did any simulation system out there have the Rocks in the series?

Speaking of which, I recall a certain Gaius Marius from the blog 1060West giving me a hard time last summer because I felt the Cubs' solid defense was helping them win games. Gaius argued that the Cubs' defense wasn't really that good. I told him to name a team with better D. He named the Rockies... and told me that their defense wasn't helping them win any games.

Compared to what baseline? An average catcher? A mediocre catcher? A great catcher? Barrett is lousy but it's not like he's historically poor as a fielder.


Compared with a solid defensive catcher. Doesn't have to be Pudge Rodriguez or Brad Ausmus, but at least say, a good Damian Miller season.

Michael Barrett is historically awful as a catcher. Make no mistake about it. That guy has invented ways to lose games:

1. Dropped third strike, throw past first for an error... runner comes in.

2. Have opposing base runner in a run down... botch that and the guy comes in to score.

He goes well beyond the usual, passed ball letting someone in.

There has never been a catcher as lousy as Michael Barrett who has been allowed to start for so long because of a decent, not even great bat. The only lousy catcher who had enough bat to make up for it was Mike Piazza. And even he wasn't so leaky behind the plate.

Michael Barrett has a baseball IQ equal to Dan's fashion sense. He's literally something straight out of the first half of the Bad News Bears.

So now, back to the question... since Barrett's Cubs and Padres did so much better in games he didn't start... just how much of a disparity is there between two identical teams, but one with an idiot leaky catcher... and the other with a decent season from Damian Miller/Mike Lieberthal? How many games?

The statheads I've known say it could only affect one or two games. You know what I think of that.
   243. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 03:58 AM (#2696257)
(Laughing) ... My god... I cannot believe the amount of scheisse you people know about Dungeons & Dragons.
   244. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: February 21, 2008 at 04:04 AM (#2696259)
Michael Barrett only had one error with the Padres. Even defensive god Josh Bard had 3.
   245. Chris Dial Posted: February 21, 2008 at 05:15 AM (#2696309)
So you *do* see Gary in the halls? I love him.

Also, you know who Chris Lover-of-Juliet is? I know him - he's a clown.
   246. Chris Dial Posted: February 21, 2008 at 05:16 AM (#2696311)
I'm just giddy with Monty's position. Is that shameless?
   247. Peoria Dave Posted: February 21, 2008 at 05:17 AM (#2696312)
since Barrett's Cubs and Padres did so much better in games he didn't start... just how much of a disparity is there


You do realize that the 2004 Cubs won more games than the 2003 Cubs, right? Who were the starting catchers on those 2 teams? I'm sure you'll have some excuse or make an exception (the 2004 Cubs don't count or something like that).

This has been fun. I think repoz needs to point out some dumbass once a week and we can all gather here to ridicule him. For some reason, I doubt any of the others we ridicule are going to give us more to ridicule him with as BNC did today with his many comments.
   248. Andere Richtingen Posted: February 21, 2008 at 05:28 AM (#2696315)
I don't know too many statheads who will be pushing the Cubs to play Cedeno with his .277 career OBP unless they hate the Cubs.

(Raises Hand...???)

Okay, I don't mean that entirely, but Cedeño just turned 25, and he has a .400+ OBA in his last 600+ minor league plate appearances. How that will/will not ever translate into a major league performance we don't know, and defensively he has shown that he can be dumber than a box of rocks, but I'm not sure I see a lot of value in taking PAs away from Cedeño in favor of, say, Alex Cintron. In fact, it seems kind of dumb.

That said, the Cubs are the Cubs, and they simply don't develop position players, so guys like Cedeño in the Cubs organization should be valued at pennies on the dollar.
   249. greenback likes millwall, they don't care Posted: February 21, 2008 at 05:39 AM (#2696326)
I like Cedeño. He got caught stealing second on a walk.

But if you're not trying to construct a run estimator, but are instead simply trying to measure the actual runs that were produced by the two players, why would you subtract the HRs?


Tango had a post on his blog about this maybe six months back. The math actually works better if you subtract out homers.
   250. Charter Member of the Jesus Melendez Fanclub Posted: February 21, 2008 at 05:45 AM (#2696330)
I'd be curious to see Jorge Posada's (WP+PB)/G numbers along with his catcher's era numbers through the years.

I don't have catcher ERA, but last August I did look at the OPS splits. Since Posada became a semi-regular in 1997:
OPS allowed with Posada catching: .735
OPS allowed w/o Posada catching: .727

This is very raw; I just found the PA and OPS for each season, and then calculated a weighted average. Should be close enough.

The gap between Posada and Girardi in '97 was huge. If you just look since '98, Posada has a 7 point advantage.

If certain catchers receive certain pitchers all the time, that's obviously going to skew their catcher-ERA or catcher-OPS. For instance, in '98 Posada caught 86% of David Wells's batters faced, but only 11% of Pettitte's and 4% of Cone's. And 46% of the total non-Posada plate appearances were caught by Girardi, so if Girardi has some great talent or deficiency here, it's going to skew the entire total for the non-Posada group.

I don't put much weight on catcher-ERA/OPS, I think there's too much noise. But for those interested, there you go.
   251. Cowboy Popup Posted: February 21, 2008 at 05:48 AM (#2696332)
That Dodgers team was never quite the same after LoDuca was gone. Yes, they made the playoffs, but they weren't the same. Their winning % pre-trade was .583, and they finished the year at .574. Not a huge difference, but a decrease nonetheless.

You just do not change catchers midseason unless your catcher is really a drag defensively. In the Dodgers' case, Dave Ross and Brent Maybe were pretty good catchers, as was LoDuca, but the platoon guys truly couldn't hit a lick on a team that needed offense.

Would they have beat the Cardinals? Who knows? I thought you statheads all claim the playoffs are a crapshoot?

And yes, there's a thing to being a team leader, team chemistry... you know, the stuff statheads hate.


So your argument is that .009 points is a significant or important decline? That's silly, you didn't type that with a straight face did you?

Wait, so you don't change catchers because of their importance to the defense, but the Dodgers messed up because Ross wasn't as good a hitter as Lo Duca?

I'm not a stathead, I've never even read Bill James. However, I'm pretty sure that the Dodgers, whose #3 starter was Jose Lima (top 4 starters Weaver, Ishii, Odalis Perez and Jose Lima, EWWW), had no ####### chance against those Cardinals.

How do you know Paul Lo Duca was a leader on that team? None of his teammates talked about his leadership then, the only teammate I've seen talk about Lo Duca like he was a good person was Tom Glavine this year. There is absolutely no evidence whatsoever that Lo Duca had any sort of effect on that teams chemistry, and even if he did, they still weren't beating the Cards.
   252. Kiko Sakata Posted: February 21, 2008 at 05:52 AM (#2696335)
Tango had a post on his blog about this maybe six months back. The math actually works better if you subtract out homers.


As I understood that post, it argued that R+RBI-HR was a better run <u>estimator</u> - that is, it correlated better to RC or LWTS. But I don't see what the point is of using R and RBI to construct a run <u>estimator</u>, because of the obvious weaknesses of R and RBI as measures of player talent that have been discussed here. The only point, then, of looking at R and RBI (to the extent there is any point at all, of course) is to see who actually scored and actually drove in real runs. And in that case, really driving in a run is really driving in a run regardless of who scored it and really scoring a run is really scoring a run regardless of who drove it in.
   253. greenback likes millwall, they don't care Posted: February 21, 2008 at 06:07 AM (#2696341)
to the extent there is any point at all, of course

Yes. Tango's aforementioned crusade against RC makes me wonder why he was messing with R+RBI in the first place.
   254. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 07:02 AM (#2696375)
So your argument is that .009 points is a significant or important decline? That's silly, you didn't type that with a straight face did you?


Cowboy, I don't mean to split hairs here... but you do realize that the Dodgers must performed worse than .574 to drop from .583 to get there, right? So, while it's not a drastic decline, it's more than .009.

I thought the playoffs are a crapshoot? Isn't that what the statheads say?

Who the hell knows if the Dodgers would have beat the Cards with LoDuca? We'll never know. You sure as hell didn't know the Rockies were headed to the World Series last year until what, the final month it started to look possible?

Don't act like an expert on past occurrences that never happened. Upsets happen.

Paul LoDuca had a lot of big hits for that Dodgers team late in games. He was an important player in the fabric of that team. I believe in what I call the inertia of team winning in sports. If something's working, don't mess with it. That doesn't apply from year to year, but it certainly does within a season.
   255. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 07:07 AM (#2696376)
Charter Member, you should look at the OPS against numbers for the 2007 Cubs. Look at Zambrano to Koyie Hill. Hell, look at a lot of guys to Koyie Hill.
   256. Charter Member of the Jesus Melendez Fanclub Posted: February 21, 2008 at 07:19 AM (#2696383)
I'm not interested in looking at one pitcher to one part-time catcher for one season. It will mean nearly nothing.
   257. Misirlou is on hiding to nowhere Posted: February 21, 2008 at 04:19 PM (#2696476)
Cowboy, I don't mean to split hairs here... but you do realize that the Dodgers must performed worse than .574 to drop from .583 to get there, right? So, while it's not a drastic decline, it's more than .009.


That amounts to less than 2 wins. The Dodgers were 59-42 at the time of the trade. They went 34-27 the rest of the way. Had they continued at their pre trade pace, they would have won 35.6 games. So, 1 or 2 more wins. And you want to lay that entirely on the defense of the catcher? How about an offense that went .237/.312/.393 in Sep/Oct, their worst hitting month of the season? How about a pitching staff that gave up nearly 50% more HR in Sep than any other month?
   258. JPWF13 Posted: February 21, 2008 at 04:45 PM (#2696496)
How do you know Paul Lo Duca was a leader on that team?


Because Plaschke said so?

As a Met fan I am heartily glad that LoDuca is gone- he was a decent player- but the crap he brought with him was getting ludicrous- why does AJ get so much flak and LoDuca so little?

The whole BlowDuca "heart n soul" crap was invented out of whole cloth by a press corp out to smear a GM they didn't like any way they could. If Penny didn't go down at the worst possible time that year there would be no question that was a terrific move form the Dodgers' POV.
   259. Cowboy Popup Posted: February 21, 2008 at 04:59 PM (#2696510)
Who the hell knows if the Dodgers would have beat the Cards with LoDuca? We'll never know.

Than how can you say that trading Lo Duca hurt the Dodgers in the short term?

You sure as hell didn't know the Rockies were headed to the World Series last year until what, the final month it started to look possible?

No, I didn't, and neither did you, which is why is so utterly ridiculous for you to say that trading Lo Duca hurt the Dodgers in the short term.

Paul LoDuca had a lot of big hits for that Dodgers team late in games.

Prove it.

He was an important player in the fabric of that team.

Prove it. You're a Cubs fan, what do you know about the fabric of the Dodgers team?

If something's working, don't mess with it. That doesn't apply from year to year, but it certainly does within a season.

Man, you must have hated the Rick Sutcliffe trade.
   260. rfloh Posted: February 21, 2008 at 05:33 PM (#2696536)
Christ, Jason Giambi was the heart and soul of the A's early this decade... and we now know he used. Are you going to say he wasn't a leader? Ask Huddy, Mulder, Zito, Chavez, etc... who they all looked up to. It was Giambi. That guy was so money in the clutch during those winning Oaktown years it was ridiculous.


So, "money in the clutch" Giambi led the A's to a WS win? Or the WS, maybe? Or a playoff series win at least?

and it's all because of the Michael Lewis book... which is a GREAT book.


The funny thing that people like you do not seem to realise is that "statheads" existed long before Moneyball and Michael Lewis.
   261. rfloh Posted: February 21, 2008 at 05:45 PM (#2696546)
To Monty and all the AD&D fans,

Are you guys aware of Neverwinter Nights and Neverwinter Nights 2?

If you are, what do you guys think about the way NWN2 has implemented epic levels?
   262. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: February 21, 2008 at 05:48 PM (#2696549)
The funny thing that people like you do not seem to realise is that "statheads" existed long before Moneyball and Michael Lewis.
When I found rec.sport.baseball in '96, there was an acronym used all the time that was made from a phrase coined by Maynard or someone like him. It was equivalent to "Mom's Basement Dwelling Spreadsheet User". For the life of me, I can't remember it.
   263. GotowarMissAgnes Posted: February 21, 2008 at 06:16 PM (#2696579)
SDCN (Stat Drunk Computer Nerd)
   264. GotowarMissAgnes Posted: February 21, 2008 at 06:18 PM (#2696580)
BNC, do you know who Henry Chadwick is? The criticisms of the RBI didn't start because of sabrmetrics. It started almost with the first time a box score was ever created.
   265. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: February 21, 2008 at 06:23 PM (#2696587)
That's it, thanks, GMA. Or is that GtwMA?
   266. Chris Dial Posted: February 21, 2008 at 06:24 PM (#2696589)
Are you guys aware of Neverwinter Nights and Neverwinter Nights 2?

Never heard of it - got a link?
   267. Dan The Mediocre Posted: February 21, 2008 at 06:28 PM (#2696595)

Never heard of it - got a link?


They are computer RPGs that use the AD&D;system.

Neverwinter Nights
Neverwinter Nights 2
   268. rfloh Posted: February 21, 2008 at 06:36 PM (#2696603)
#273

It's basically, AD&D;on computers.

WoTC allows Bioware (NWN1) and Obsidian (NWN2) to use the AD&D;rules and system under license to make games for the computer. NWW1 uses 3rd edition rules, NWN2 3.5 ed rules, but with tweaked epic level rules that are claimed by some to be representative of the upcoming new 4th ed rules.

What makes the games attractive, is that they come with toolsets, allowing users to create modules / scenarios / custom content.
   269. galaxieboi Posted: February 21, 2008 at 06:36 PM (#2696604)
There's a new D&D;edition? That's awesome.

I'm glad to see D&D;has survived that early-90's flooding of the RPG market.
   270. Chris Dial Posted: February 21, 2008 at 06:44 PM (#2696611)
I am now jazzed about that. Are they like Everquest?
   271. Dan The Mediocre Posted: February 21, 2008 at 06:50 PM (#2696618)
I am now jazzed about that. Are they like Everquest?


They're primarily single player, though they both allow for online play.
   272. Chris Dial Posted: February 21, 2008 at 06:53 PM (#2696624)
Even better. I'm more of a singleplayer kind of guy, but if BKE and I can play together, that would be terrific. theoretically, we could get our whole old group together online. That'd be awesome.

Thanks a lot for the tip.
   273. rfloh Posted: February 21, 2008 at 06:55 PM (#2696626)
#277

Depends. But not really.

Basically, the strength of those 2 games, NWN1 especially is the community created content. NWN1 had / still has a very knowledgeable, both in D&D;and in computer coding, and passionate community.

How you choose to play NWN1 depends on you. There are persistent worlds where you can play. You can play various modules with a group of friends in a multiplayer game. You can play in DM moderated games over the net. You can play solo single player modules.

NWN2 is still a bit lacking in terms of custom content, due to custom content builders not being all that excited by it, due to various bugs.

NWN Vault is the best place to start to look for community created content.
   274. GotowarMissAgnes Posted: February 21, 2008 at 06:58 PM (#2696630)
Just Aggie, is peachy.
   275. Randy Jones Posted: February 21, 2008 at 07:10 PM (#2696644)
WoTC allows Bioware (NWN1) and Obsidian (NWN2) to use the AD&D;rules and system under license to make games for the computer. NWW1 uses 3rd edition rules, NWN2 3.5 ed rules, but with tweaked epic level rules that are claimed by some to be representative of the upcoming new 4th ed rules.


Unfortunately, Obsidian did a very poor job with the controls and AI in NWN2, to the point that I became too frustrated to finish it. I really wish Bioware still held the license.
   276. rfloh Posted: February 21, 2008 at 07:24 PM (#2696661)
Unfortunately, Obsidian did a very poor job with the controls and AI in NWN2, to the point that I became too frustrated to finish it. I really wish Bioware still held the license.


Not that I'm a fan of the job that Obsidian did with NWN2 or anything, but NWN1 is infamous for it's poor AI. Even with years of improvement, the initial AI was worse, the default AI in NWN is still basically at the level of an 8 year old child, or worse.

The problem, IMO, with the Original Campaign in NWN2 and the expansion is poor (item) balancing, and in the expansion, a poorly done tweak of the epic rules. Magic items abound, and can be acquired easily all over the place. The result is that it becomes difficult for classes that do not benefit as much from high magic settings.

A bigger issue for me though, is that Obsidian does not really seem all that interested in supporting the custom content community.
   277. Kyle S at work Posted: February 21, 2008 at 07:28 PM (#2696665)
Wasn't Baldur's Gate based on some sort of D&D;ruleset? I don't know much about that stuff, even though I did buy that game a while back (but never played it much).
   278. Randy Jones Posted: February 21, 2008 at 07:29 PM (#2696668)

Not that I'm a fan of the job that Obsidian did with NWN2 or anything, but NWN1 is infamous for it's poor AI. Even with years of improvement, the initial AI was worse, the default AI in NWN is still basically at the level of an 8 year old child, or worse.


To clarify, I was referring to the AI for your party members. It was much, much, much better in NWN1 than NWN2. The opponent AI sucked in both, but it has basically sucked in every rpg game ever made.
   279. rfloh Posted: February 21, 2008 at 07:40 PM (#2696687)
Wasn't Baldur's Gate based on some sort of D&D;ruleset? I don't know much about that stuff, even though I did buy that game a while back (but never played it much).


Yeah, 2nd edition AD&D;rules.

To clarify, I was referring to the AI for your party members. It was much, much, much better in NWN1 than NWN2


Hmm. Most people I know say the opposite, ie controlling a single player party in NWN1 is more difficult. The NWN1 party AI is pretty damn bad, and the controls too; try playing with (arcane) spellcasters or rangers controlled by the AI. It's bad to the point that there are various popular community created AI packages that all pretty much improve on the default AI, sometimes fairly significantly.
   280. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 08:13 PM (#2696715)
How about a pitching staff that gave up nearly 50% more HR in Sep than any other month?


Bingo.
   281. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 08:44 PM (#2696738)
That amounts to less than 2 wins. The Dodgers were 59-42 at the time of the trade. They went 34-27 the rest of the way. Had they continued at their pre trade pace, they would have won 35.6 games. So, 1 or 2 more wins. And you want to lay that entirely on the defense of the catcher? How about an offense that went .237/.312/.393 in Sep/Oct, their worst hitting month of the season?


Sorry, but your hero DePodesta made a big trade... and his team did worse, not better, after it. That's a fact that's indisputable. Perhaps you want to argue strength of schedule or something? It may not have done worse by much, but you certainly can't argue that the trade improved the club for that season.

Prove it. You're a Cubs fan, what do you know about the fabric of the Dodgers team?


Uh, I live in LA? I've spoken with many a Dodgers fan out here... and a majority of them hated that trade, period... and it has nothing to do with Plaschke. Is there a stathead campaign to smear Plaschke for smearing DePodesta?

So, "money in the clutch" Giambi led the A's to a WS win? Or the WS, maybe? Or a playoff series win at least?


In the 2000 ALDS, Giambi's obp was .500. I'll take that anytime. In the 2001 ALDS, his OPS was .984. They didn't lose because of him... just as my Cubbies certainly didn't lose to the Giants in 1989 on account of Mark Grace.

Man, you must have hated the Rick Sutcliffe trade.


That trade improved the Cubs tremendously... why would I hate it? At the pitcher position, they got one hell of a starter. Our outfield didn't suffer on account of not having Joe Carter and Mel Hall. We also didn't miss Daryl Banks or Don Shulze. That was a winning trade anyway you look at it. The Cubs were 34-25 at the time and finished 96-65.

The funny thing that people like you do not seem to realise is that "statheads" existed long before Moneyball and Michael Lewis.


Gee, really? I thought Michael Lewis was writing about Bill James' Abstract books that were yet to be released? I thought it was like a book review or something? Moronic.

The problem is that Moneyball spawned a legion of stathead know-it-all's who all think the same. You guys are like the Borg. Honestly. All dissent will be assimilated. The funny thing is... the better you're getting at stats, the more certain elements of conventional wisdom get validated. Sac bunts, clutch hitting, defense, etc. God knows there's a time to bunt.
   282. Dan Szymborski Posted: February 21, 2008 at 08:54 PM (#2696750)
The problem is that Moneyball spawned a legion of stathead know-it-all's who all think the same. You guys are like the Borg. Honestly. All dissent will be assimilated. The funny thing is... the better you're getting at stats, the more certain elements of conventional wisdom get validated. Sac bunts, clutch hitting, defense, etc. God knows there's a time to bunt.

Behold! SUMMON DUMB ARGUMENT! 2D8 INTELLIGENCE DAMAGE!
   283. Mark R. Garber Posted: February 21, 2008 at 08:57 PM (#2696753)
The problem is that Moneyball spawned a legion of stathead know-it-all's who all think the same. You guys are like the Borg. Honestly. All dissent will be assimilated. The funny thing is... the better you're getting at stats, the more certain elements of conventional wisdom get validated. Sac bunts, clutch hitting, defense, etc. God knows there's a time to bunt.


Clearly, this chump hasn't actually seen statheads have disagreements with each other. But then again, Retarded Homophobes probably spend more time jerking off to 80s Metal Videos rather than engaging in debates.
   284. The District Attorney Posted: February 21, 2008 at 08:59 PM (#2696756)
If we were really cool, we'd be making Star Trek analogies!
   285. Peoria Dave Posted: February 21, 2008 at 08:59 PM (#2696757)
I don't think much of BNC, but you've at least got to give the man some credit. An awful lot of people were laughing at him when repoz posted this just so people could laugh at him. 290 comments later and he's still hanging around. A half-way intelligent person who said something stupid would be long gone, but not BNC. He's either got balls of steel or is so dumb that he doesn't mind a couple hundred people having fun at his expense. I really think it's a toss-up. On one hand I doubt he has balls of steel and on the other hand I'm just not convinced someone could be as dumb as someone would have to be to stick around a party in which they're being mocked and laughed at.
   286. JPWF13 Posted: February 21, 2008 at 09:00 PM (#2696760)
Is there a stathead campaign to smear Plaschke for smearing DePodesta?


Well there's a stathead campaign to smear Plashke for being a terrible writer and reporter, it was going on before Depodesta, that just kicked it into overdrive.

The Dodger fans I know were pretty reasonable about the trade, weren't too fond of changing horses mid-stream, but wanted a pitcher like Penny come playoff time (his world series performance against the Yankees being fresh in memory)...

and then the LA media campaign went into high gear, "Oh my GOD they traded the team's heart and soul!!!!!!!"
And the Dodger fans I knew all said, "Gee I always liked LoDuca but I didn't know he was that important..." One even told me that he'd always read that LoDuca was bad in the clubhouse before he read articles saying he was the team leader...

Within days a trade that most of the fanbase was mildly against, became one that they hated, based upon being fed MSM disinformation.

Anyway, with respect to Plaschke, read his stuff, he's awful, absolutely awful, he's a hack writer among hackwriters (and the hacks give him awards)-
Hell I don;'t agree with most of what you write (you may have noticed), but you WRITE much better than he does. (and he gets paid to write and wins awards...)
   287. JPWF13 Posted: February 21, 2008 at 09:04 PM (#2696762)
I really think it's a toss-up. On one hand I doubt he has balls of steel and on the other hand I'm just not convinced someone could be as dumb as someone would have to be to stick around a party in which they're being mocked and laughed at.


He's deluded, he has no doubt he's right and "we" are wrong, so our abuse is meaningless to him.
   288. Guapo Posted: February 21, 2008 at 09:06 PM (#2696768)
He's either got balls of steel or is so dumb that he doesn't mind a couple hundred people having fun at his expense.

The good news is that he has balls of steel.

The bad news is that they're all rattling around in his skull.
   289. Cowboy Popup Posted: February 21, 2008 at 09:06 PM (#2696769)
Sorry, but your hero DePodesta made a big trade... and his team did worse, not better, after it. That's a fact that's indisputable. Perhaps you want to argue strength of schedule or something? It may not have done worse by much, but you certainly can't argue that the trade improved the club for that season.

Prove that they did worse because of Lo Duca not being there.

Uh, I live in LA? I've spoken with many a Dodgers fan out here... and a majority of them hated that trade, period... and it has nothing to do with Plaschke. Is there a stathead campaign to smear Plaschke for smearing DePodesta?

I've spoken to Dodgers fans too and they didn't care much for Lo Duca. They were all pretty down on him for not being the same player he was in 2001. And they thought Brad Penny had the potential to be an ace, which he eventually was. And you really gotta stop calling me a stathead.

If something's working, don't mess with it. That doesn't apply from year to year, but it certainly does within a season.

That trade improved the Cubs tremendously... why would I hate it? At the pitcher position, they got one hell of a starter. Our outfield didn't suffer on account of not having Joe Carter and Mel Hall. We also didn't miss Daryl Banks or Don Shulze. That was a winning trade anyway you look at it. The Cubs were 34-25 at the time and finished 96-65.

So if somethings working, don't mess with it, but if it works, then it was ok to mess with it? How many times have you contradicted yourself in this thread? You do know we can go back and read what you said before right?

You guys are like the Borg. Honestly. All dissent will be assimilated. The funny thing is... the better you're getting at stats, the more certain elements of conventional wisdom get validated. Sac bunts, clutch hitting, defense, etc. God knows there's a time to bunt.

The people of this site are like the borg? This site is probably one of the greatest layman gatherings out there in terms of developing new concepts, stimulating debate, and containg a wide variety of intellectually developed positions on any subject you can imagine and I feel privileged that I can view it all here without being able to contribute much if anything. You spout off the exact same trash I can find anywhere, on ESPN, on CNNSI.com, or in any third rate sports section. You throw out cliches and use hindsight and narrow examples that have little relevance to support your absurd claims. And when something is disproved, or refuted to the point that you can't really say anything else without sounding so full of #### it would even embarass you, you simply omit the subject from your response and conjur up some other assinine straw man or outlier to base your ridiculous assertions on. You are one of the least interesting, close minded, unimaginative people to ever ruin a thread on this board. If you presented anything that was even mildly original, I must have missed it while digging through the incredible pile of crap you have posted on this board in the last day. You have purposefully ignored valid points, painted posters with broad strokes and respond only in the hopes of proving yourself right or annoying your antagonists until they give up, you have no interest in learning anything or having a decent conversation, you just slam away with your stupid, poorly thought out ideas until no one else will be able to stand arguing with you, at which point you will declare yourself the winner of the thread. You are the borg, you are manifestation of group think and mainstream, coming to assimilate or intellectually kill all those who do not agree with your directive.

I'm done. (Drops mic, walks off stage).
   290. Peoria Dave Posted: February 21, 2008 at 09:10 PM (#2696774)
so our abuse is meaningless to him.


That's too bad. If he had half a brain, he could use this as a learning experience.

I disagree about him being better than Plashke. Plashke is bad, but have you read some of BNC's posts on his blog? At least Plashke can be bad without all the unnecessary language making it even harder to read. I'm fine with someone using the occasional swear word to emphasize something, but when I tried reading his stuff the other day, it reminded me of those rebel wannabes in high school who felt they were cool because they could say #### every other word. Those people were difficult to tolerate then and not worthy of tolerating today.
   291. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 09:35 PM (#2696807)
Clearly, this chump hasn't actually seen statheads have disagreements with each other. But then again, Retarded Homophobes probably spend more time jerking off to 80s Metal Videos rather than engaging in debates.


First of all, I guarantee a bunch of Dungeons and Dragons playing dorks spent time at home jerking off to 80's metal videos far more than experiencing actual women. My dating life has been a thrill. Every race, every color.

What brought this thought to mind, Shawn Green? The jerking off and 80's videos? Is this projection?

It's sort of like the folks who leave hate comments at my site with references to homosexual acts. I often wonder, "Why are male organs on their minds? I don't even like thinking about homosexual acts at all, personally... and wouldn't need to conjure any to insult another. They're even sure to attack with the idea that I 'suck large ones'. Where does the descriptive/preference come from?" It's really hilarious.

I love the sexual/social comments like this from the supposed 'objective scientists'? They really kill me. For one thing, most blacks I've known absolutely hate it when white people play race police. It's so phony. It's always liberal college educated white people with white guilt. There's nothing more annoying in this world than white people playing race police on other white people.

Shawn Green, same thing as Peoria Dave... go get a date, man... get some good food... get a drink. Attacking someone socially via the internet is a lost cause.

Most gay men I've known care more about a guy's looks and charm than watching for homophobia. Don't forget... a lot of them want 'butch' and would kill to land a straight guy. Your wussy little homophobe police thing is hardly interesting... and hardly butch. I am truly the last person one would look to for homophobia.

I lived in SF for 8 years. Man, I can't imagine a homophobe doing that. That would be miserable.

And sorry, the fact remains that Dan's picture looks pretty ####### queer. My gay friends would say the exact same thing. Or they might say something along the lines of, "Fashion police, have him arrested." He insulted me by inferring I'd have any interest in his car. I responded in kind, that perhaps if I took a queer photo of myself in a quasi-papal outfit, would I catch his eye? (There's a Pet Shop Boys reference there for you... boy, I must really be homophobic as I think Neil Tennant's a genius.) Perez Hilton would love my response... I assure you.

Back to baseball: Sorry, at the end of the day, you people really don't disagree on anything substantial. If there's a choice between two players, you'll agree on whomever has the higher WARP3. Admit it. You might disagree on whether WPA provides a better 4.3 vector estimator than WAR Iso2.4, but when it comes to players and winning games... and a choice between a couple guys for a team... forget it, you're all the same.

You guys have an acronym for everything. You guys would name your own children WSAB.

he has no doubt he's right and "we" are wrong


The day you guys can predict who will win or lose better than I can consistently... and who the better player is between two players... better than I can consistently, then I'll be wrong.

None of us had the Rockies in the series, including you guys. So, how far have you come? (And this question is not meant for when you're watching 80's hair metal videos.)
   292. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 09:37 PM (#2696808)
Hell I don;'t agree with most of what you write (you may have noticed), but you WRITE much better than he does. (and he gets paid to write and wins awards...)


I'm the best read in the blogosphere. That's why everyone in this thread keeps coming back for more.
   293. rfloh Posted: February 21, 2008 at 09:37 PM (#2696809)
In the 2000 ALDS, Giambi's obp was .500. I'll take that anytime. In the 2001 ALDS, his OPS was .984. They didn't lose because of him... just as my Cubbies certainly didn't lose to the Giants in 1989 on account of Mark Grace.


Those are just numbers. What about the leadership, the intangibles?

The problem is that Moneyball spawned a legion of stathead know-it-all's who all think the same. You guys are like the Borg. Honestly. All dissent will be assimilated.


And how does that make "us guys" any different from any one group of people who follow baseball, from "old school" know-it-all's like you? Statheads have biases, sure. So does any group of people of follow baseball.

Also, if I choose to give money to MGL, Tango and Dolphin for their Book, if I choose to give money to Kahrl, Silver et al because I like their analysis and writing style, if I choose to give money to Brattain, Jaffe et al for their THT annual, why do you care? It's not your money.
   294. cardsfanboy Posted: February 21, 2008 at 09:38 PM (#2696812)
another fun thread. A few minor points.

1. the postseason is a crapshoot, is true, it doesn't mean it's a strict 50% crapshoot though. The truly better team has a better chance of winning, but it's far from guaranteed.

2. this pb+wp/g(or innings, which it should be, if not it would make defensive specialist catchers appear even better than they really are, assuming it's an 'useful' evaluator in the first place) is actually quite interesting, but it it shouldn't be considered as the only tool for evaluating catchers defense, quite simply as mentioned by both sides on this argument, that the pitchers do tailor their approach to how much they trust the catcher, so better perceived defensive players are going to be getting tougher chances.

3. heck it's tough finding any team who made it to the post season that traded it's catcher mid season. Braves in 2005 effectively did that with bringing McCann to the majors (don't know if he's good or bad defensively) Padres in 2005 traded for Olivo but he wasn't their starter for the most part. I'm not sure where he was going with this comment anyway.

4. I'll mention it once again, the r+rbi stat doesn't work as a good stat unless you include a chance component and a rate version. After that it has some validity, but that is also the same argument that people have against using rbi by itself. Joe Carter probably scores very well in this system and he is the poster boy for exposing the flaw with RBI also.

5. It's funny that the Cub guy doesn't want to acknowledge replacement level, but then has to be vague with his answers when he asked about in comparison to who? the point of replacement, as mentioned, is to provide some type of arbitrary low level baseline to compare players against, it could just as easily been a rate that they could call "average player" (used frequently) "all-star player"(not used) or even "hof player" but then you would be dealing with negative numbers a lot and people don't like to deal with negative numbers when talking these type of things.

6. Sorry, but once again, win shares does measure wins, you can argue the accuracy of how it does it, whether it's valuable or not etc, but it does measure wins, it's built into it's equation.

the real problem with your stat is that if you broaden it out to the team level it's going to correlate accurately with team runs scored, because it's built into the system you designed. (high homerun teams will perform better than expected in your system but that would be the only hiccuup) The reason that ops is liked so much is that it's a rate stat that correlates pretty well on the team level, with run scoring(especially modified versions that multiply obp by 1.4-1.8 depending on the scoring environment) yet also works at the individual level.



as to the D&D;comments, I hate the thought of the new 4th edition, I just got my 5th monster manual, and along with fiend folio is a pretty stong investment in 3rd edition (never did go to 3.5) not sure that I want to jump into the fray again with a 4th edition(not to mention having to force my party to buy player handbooks again) and those of us who have played D&D;should join together in a moment of silence for the passing of Dragon Magazine.....................At least we still have Knights of the Dinner Table---or KODT.
   295. BadNewsCubs Posted: February 21, 2008 at 09:50 PM (#2696825)
I've spoken to Dodgers fans too and they didn't care much for Lo Duca. They were all pretty down on him for not being the same player he was in 2001. And they thought Brad Penny had the potential to be an ace, which he eventually was. And you really gotta stop calling me a stathead.


The thing is... DePodesta's plan... to ultimately score Randy Johnson, didn't pan out. I commend him for going for it. His heart was in the right place. Had he pulled that off, the whole thing makes more sense. But, this deal on its own, didn't work.

Power pitching wins in the playoffs. Getting Brad Penny was huge. Personally, I would have tried to get him without my catcher. What did the Marlins need with LoDuca anyway? (Though, he was an all-star in '05.)

So if somethings working, don't mess with it, but if it works, then it was ok to mess with it? How many times have you contradicted yourself in this thread? You do know we can go back and read what you said before right?


I wouldn't call 34-25 some grand example of 'something working'. This was earlier in the season than the Dodgers trade. When Koyie Hill starts for the Cubs and they go 14-4 in those starts, then something's seriously working. I don't mind midseason pickups, especially if you're addressing an area where you're weak. I mind them if you're trading away one of your core system players... and you're messing with the wife, the catcher.

You are one of the least interesting, close minded, unimaginative people to ever ruin a thread on this board.


You sound like you're crying.

If you presented anything that was even mildly original, I must have missed it while digging through the incredible pile of crap you have posted on this board in the last day


You've read every word... and have come back for more. You can't even find this thread on the main page, and you're here a second day. It's a free country, you have choices, etc. There must be some reason you keep reading. (laughing)

At least Plashke can be bad without all the unnecessary language making it even harder to read.


Peoria Dave, was John Lithgow in Footloose patterned after you?
   296. cardsfanboy Posted: February 21, 2008 at 09:55 PM (#2696828)
The problem is that Moneyball spawned a legion of stathead know-it-all's who all think the same. You guys are like the Borg. Honestly. All dissent will be assimilated. The funny thing is... the better you're getting at stats, the more certain elements of conventional wisdom get validated. Sac bunts, clutch hitting, defense, etc. God knows there's a time to bunt.


as already mentioned, we have these threads because we don't all agree, there are similar concepts that are accepted by all, because it's so blatantly true that it is hard to imagine a thinking person would oppose that view. Rbi is one of them, the stat was forced into baseball even though at the time, most people thought it was a pretty useless stat, wasn't officially recognized by MLB until around the 20's and still had people disputing it's validity(see Branch Rickey quote earlier in thread)

RBI isn't a good stat until you incorporate a rate element. And the purpose of 'replacement' or 'average' is to make that stat look better and give context. I mean if the average player in MLB drove in 10% of their rbi chances and you have a guy doing 8% then it is nice to have a stat showing how he is comparing to the rest of the league. Raw numbers don't tell a full story.
   297. Doris from Rego Park Posted: February 21, 2008 at 10:02 PM (#2696841)
I'm just not convinced someone could be as dumb as someone would have to be to stick around a party in which they're being mocked and laughed at.


See: Ben Schumin on the Portal of Evil boards, circa 2001.
   298. Randy Jones Posted: February 21, 2008 at 10:13 PM (#2696857)
as to the D&D;comments, I hate the thought of the new 4th edition, I just got my 5th monster manual, and along with fiend folio is a pretty stong investment in 3rd edition (never did go to 3.5) not sure that I want to jump into the fray again with a 4th edition(not to mention having to force my party to buy player handbooks again)

Wait a couple weeks after the books are released and search around on torrent sites, you will be able to find all the books in PDF format.
   299. Misirlou is on hiding to nowhere Posted: February 21, 2008 at 10:15 PM (#2696860)
When Koyie Hill starts for the Cubs and they go 14-4 in those starts, then something's seriously working.


Yeah, the Cubs offense. Hill started 25 games, not 18. The Cubs won 17 of those. They averaged over 7 runs per game in those wins.
   300. Peoria Dave Posted: February 21, 2008 at 10:25 PM (#2696873)
Peoria Dave, was John Lithgow in Footloose patterned after you?


Nice try. I just haven't found too many intellectuals who use the words as often as you do. They aren't necessary and are almost always used that frequently by the uneducated. Don't mistake my criticism for your constant use of foul language as the only one I can come up with. I just don't care to get into a discussion with you because I can have the very same discussion with the side of my house when I get home from work. Your thoughts and opinions are the same ones I read each morning in the newspaper and the same ones I see on ESPN and they're the same ones casual fans, heavy drinkers discuss over their 3rd and 4th pitchers of beer.

I have no intention of addressing you with any respect or discussing this game with you because 1) you have shown nobody else here any respect and therefore do not deserve it yourself and 2) I already had these discussions at the age of 17. I'm sorry you haven't had them yet and wish you the best, but I'm only here to enjoy watching you be ridiculed, mocked, made fun of, and laughed at. It's just an added bonus that you're too stupid to see how much fun people are having at your expense.
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