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Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Why Home Runs Will Be More Important Than Ever in October

Back when Billy Beane’s Oakland A’s made an annual habit of departing early from the playoffs, Beane retaliated against the narrative that his teams didn’t put the ball in play enough, didn’t bunt or steal enough or didn’t defend well enough–in short, that they “weren’t built for the postseason.”

Beane, the executive vice president of baseball operations for Oakland, pointed out that in losing four straight Division Series from 2000-03 his team actually struck out less than its opponents in three of them.

“Do you know what wins in the postseason?” he told me. “Hit more home runs than the other team. That’s what wins. Almost nothing has a greater impact.”

Beane is right. Take the 33 postseason games from last year. Opponents hit the same number of home runs in 10 of those games. In the others, the team that out-homered its opponent went 19-4, an 83% win rate.

Is it wrong for me to, after reading this, want things to turn out the other way, just to demonstrate the dangers of this sort of prediction?

 

QLE Posted: September 24, 2019 at 12:34 AM | 0 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: home runs, playoffs

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