6:36 pm September 27, 2012, by David O'Brien
September 28th, 201210:44 am
Of Braves hitters who have over 100 ABs with RISP, Freeman, BMac, and Heyward are the only 3 guys with averages under .250 in that situation. Freeman is at .227, Mac is at .168, and Heyward is hitting .232
Every other Braves hitter is doing okay in that situation. Even Dan.
Now take RISP and 2 outs, there are 3 guys that you want at the plate. Freddie, Uggla, and Prado. Those 3 are hitting over .300 in that spot.
Shaun – You’re like a snapping turtle ing a thunder storm.
So with 6 games to go the Braves are 91-65. I believe I predicted them winning the division at 95-67 which if they won 4 out of the last 6 my record prediction would be correct, unfortunately the Nationals are doing better than predicted and most likely will win the division. I’m not giving up hope but we need some help from St. Louis and the Phillies.
Speaking of St. Louis, I’m really getting sick of that team and the arrogance of some of it’s players. Wainwright opens his mouth and makes that comment about waiting until they knock out the Braves in the wild card game to celebrate. I really liked that Chipper stayed calm and didn’t respond with bulletin board material for them. I really hope they knock those f’n Cardinals out of the playoffs and believe they will. And Braves fans in Atlanta please please please go out to that playoff game and fill the seats at Turner so I don’t have to see and hear those damn Cardinals fans in our stadium.
So how is it that we never have a 100 RBI guy on this team?
September 28th, 201210:46 am
2007 was the last time we had a 100 RBI guy. Chipper and Frenchy did it.
I would love to beat the Cards byrunning Wainwright in the first inning….AND THEN CELEBRATE.
September 28th, 201210:47 am
MFin04 – Because the players realize RBI are meaningless.
September 28th, 201210:48 am
Really hoping that Freddie gets 7 more RBI….
September 28th, 201210:49 am
Funny this is Wainwright was correct and so were the Braves. When you EPIC collapse one year and then make the playoffs the next year you celebrate. When you cause an EPIC collapse and then win the World Series with clutch win after clutch win you don’t celebrate the Wild Card. Makes sense on both accounts.
Braves bulletin board is getting filled with Cardinals and Nationals stuff however.
September 28th, 201210:50 am
Why not bat Uggla first? His OBP is good enough.. probably would do more damage up top in the 1 or 2 hole. The horrible part is having Bourn and him back to back as much as they strikeout.
September 28th, 201210:52 am
I only looked at guys with more than 50 ABs in this situation (so Mac, Chipper, Heyward, Bourn, and above 3)
Well to be fair Constanza, Prado, Heyward is a pretty awful 1-3 in your order.
September 28th, 201210:53 am
Shaun – I believe individual RBI are a COMBINATION of both skill and opportunity. One COULD debate which component is more important…but it is clearly not as black and white as you believe…as with most stuff you yammer on about.
raleighbravefan, Well, I certainly think it’s difficult to drive in something like 100 runs without being a good hitter (though not impossible), just like I certainly think it’s difficult for a pitcher to win 20 games without being a good pitcher.
The problem is that driving in 100 runs or winning 20 games tells us little about how one player compares to another. A hitter could drive in a bunch more runs or win a bunch more games than another but it tells us nothing about which hitter or pitcher is better and by how much. We can completely ignore things like pitcher wins and RBI and do perfectly fine, if not better, in determining which players are the best and worst.
I could understand using wins and RBI back when certain other metrics weren’t at our disposal. But now we have stats that actually do a much better job to tell us which players are better and by how much and they are readily available to everyone.
And I’m not talking about any extremely in-depth statistics, either. I’m just talking about simply breaking the game down in to outs and bases instead of over-relying on how many runs score when a certain player is at bat.
September 28th, 201210:55 am
Come playoffs only thing that matters are Runs and Wins.
With 6 games to go:
- We are NOT in 4th place…or 3rd
- We ARE (tied) the 4th best record in MLB…a game ahead of the Yankees
- We did NOT win 75 games this year…91 and counting, could be as many as 97
- We did NOT swoon in September
- Chipper had team MVP type year, in spite of missing more games than he would have wished.
- Prado and Heyward both bounced back big time (Heyward was not overrated, done, etc.)
- We DID make the playoffs, no matter what some think about the 1 gamer.
- We only have (probably) failed to win the division, because the Nats have been the best team in the league.
- Wren was right, and Fredi,at the least, learned and improved.
September 28th, 201210:58 am
OK Shaun…You are always right, and have the stats to prove it.
September 28th, 201211:00 am
MFin – Correction, only thing that really matters is WINS…anyhow you can get them. ((of course, the pathway to wins is more runs than the other team).
Extreme in-depth statistics? On this rather informal venue, brevity is king….however, space can be had in lieu of breadcrumbs…..should one choose that option.
September 28th, 201211:02 am
Dave Cameron had an interesting take on the whole traditional stats versus actually measuring performance as it relates to the AL MVP debate.
There is this view that if Miguel Cabrera wins the Triple Crown, he has to be the MVP, even though Mike Trout has actually out-performed him as a baseball player. Cameron’s point is can you imagine if some “sabermetrician,” or whatever, made the argument that leading the league in three statistical categories should determine the MVP.
“We only have (probably) failed to win the division, because the Nats have been the best team in the league.”
And failed to acquire one more bat for this lineup at the beginning of the year by forking out extra dough which in turn caused us to lose the division.
Brian from SC
September 28th, 201211:03 am
The little things I look at that make me happy:
Last night, the Braves passed the Dodgers and are now 3rd in the NL, behind Washington and Cincinnati, in fewest runs allowed per game. They’ve been climbing up that leaderboard for a long time.
September 28th, 201211:05 am
It worked perfectly for the Dodgers (even getting more than one)…
September 28th, 201211:07 am
ESPN Chipper article:
It does talk a lot about RBIs. So you’ve been warned.
September 28th, 201211:08 am
“It worked perfectly for the Dodgers (even getting more than one)…”
Correct, it would have if they didn’t do it with 2 months left in the season.
September 28th, 201211:09 am
And where exactly, would they have played that one other bat? Who would you have sat all year for the extra offense?
Of the two likely candidates, Uggla and McCann (based on hindsight only), at the beginning of the season, why would Wren have gone out and gotten someone to fill either role? With Uggla, you still got better power numbers from 2B than almost any other team in MLB and you had Ross to back up Mac.
So, again – who would you have replaced?
September 28th, 201211:10 am
The Braves finished 14-4 against the Marlins this year. That’s tied for the most wins by any one team against another this year:
Other teams who were 14-4 against an opponent:
Tampa Bay over Toronto
Washington over New York
Chicago over Minnesota
San Francisco over Colorado
September 28th, 201211:11 am
That’s all that matters all the time, playoffs or not. But what are the things that players do that help lead to runs and wins? Essentially the game is all about outs and bases. If we completely ignored any baseball statistic that someone has spoon-fed us throughout our lives and had to start over measuring player performance in the way we felt most appropriate, we would start with how often a player makes outs and how many bases he gains when he gets on or how many outs he gets and how he prevents the other team from gaining bases. Hitters batting in runs wouldn’t be our focus because we would realize some players may be doing a fine job with avoiding outs and gaining bases without their teammates being on base to give them runners to bat in or their teammates actually batting them in.
September 28th, 201211:12 am
MFin – Hard to “fork over” money that is not available. Also, I believe Wren tried very hard to find a RH hitter that wouls fit both our team and our payroll. In my opinion, it’s damn hard to criticize a team that wins around 95 games. Period.
Hugo Z Hackenbush
I have to compliment the Nats though, who spent virtually the same amount of money as the Brave this year, with slightly better results. Of course, when the Werth salary skyrockets in a few years their bloggers can gripe about the 21 million dollar man.
September 28th, 201211:16 am
Cameron’s point is can you imagine if some “sabermetrician,” or whatever, made the argument that leading the league in three statistical categories should determine the MVP.
Considering that the point would probably be made with an ending paragraph of snark about the stupidity of anyone who disgrees with the stated premise, yes, I can imagine that some might be inclined to roll their eyes.
Miguel Cabrera is the MVP, regardless of the Triple Crown outcome.
September 28th, 201211:17 am
Hugo Z Hackenbush, well, it’s not as simple as that. How about the bonuses they paid to Strasburg and Harper and the fact that they stunk enough in years past to get those high draft picks?
I do agree that their front office deserves plenty of credit. But saying they spent the same as the Braves is somewhat oversimplifying it. The Braves front office deserves a lot of credit, as well. Frank Wren may be one of the more underrated GM’s in the game. I’m not saying he’s perfect but since it really became his team, he’s been a master at not wasting too many roster spots.
September 28th, 201211:20 am
OK…Shaun, when we pick sides, you can be the captain of the “stat geek” team. Of course, there will be no captain of the team that values subjective values (call it “scouting”) because we all also value statistical facts. That’s what you don’t get. Even the most “sophisticated” stats only tell part of the story. But then you will never understand the true meaning and value of things like “heart”, “clutch”, and “choke”. But go ahead, and be the supreme ruler of your black and white world, that is defined solely by numbers.
September 28th, 201211:23 am
“And where exactly, would they have played that one other bat? Who would you have sat all year for the extra offense?”
DH. Do we have that in the NL. Oh, we don’t? So how the heck is our roster supposed to compete with AL rosters who have an extra player the whole year and who get a extra day of rest once or twice a week? Hmm, seems these rules are kinda shady.
September 28th, 201211:24 am
Shaun @11:17 – This may be one of the most intellegent and valid posts you have ever submitted. Nails the relative situations perfectly, and probably better than I could have stated it. I believe there’s still hope for you after all.
Can I just say that it is mind-blowing that Craig Kimbrel has a lower walk rate this season than Tim Hudson, Ben Sheets, or Paul Maholm?
September 28th, 201211:25 am
Must be Wren’s fault that there is no DH in the NL.
September 28th, 201211:27 am
Not so mind blowing (not to negate the phenomenal season KImbrel has had) -if Kimbrel worked the number of innings that either Huddy or Maholm pitched, his walk rate would increase, too.
September 28th, 201211:28 am
Nice putt, Phil…
Re: Sheets – is his comeback over?
September 28th, 201211:29 am
ncscoots, Trout plays a premium defensive position, plays his position much better than Trout, is a better baserunner, and has come close to if not equaled Cabrera’s performance on offense.
So an argument for Cabrera as MVP is an argument that defense and base-running don’t matter. And for those who want to reward individual players for how good their teammates were, Trout’s team is better. But maybe Cabrera deserves credit for putting the Tigers in the AL Central and making sure all the AL Central teams are weak enough to allow the Tigers to contend if not win the division.
I dunno about that, Lew. The point is that the greatest power relief pitcher in baseball walks fewer batters than the best finesse/control pitchers on the team.
MFin – As much as I hate…dispise…abhor the DH rule, I believe Bud and his Buds will prevail, and implement the DH rule universally, and probably turn MLB into something resembling the NFL. I also recognize that the DH rule gives the AL an advantage. It still suxxx. Also, I don’t understand why any free agent pitcher would choose an AL team…other than that money thing, of course.
September 28th, 201211:30 am
I still think Trout should win the MVP, but his .268/.367/.449 line since August 1st – 240 PA’s – isn’t helping him at all.
September 28th, 201211:32 am
Of all the impressive things about Kimbrel, the one that came to him last might be the most: his command. He’s not just a thrower, anymore. Hard enough to hit that gas when it’s right down Peachtree, but Kimbrel spots it pretty doggone well and can put it in all four quadrants. Plus, throw the slider for strikes or bury it, as needed. That command is really the attribute that’s taken him from “really good” to “insane”.
The GM(Ned Colletti) said he’ll be pleased if Gonzalez can continue producing at this clip for the remainder of his Dodgers career. Gonzalez has a .276/.328/.431 batting line with 21 RBI in 134 plate appearances.
raleighbravefan, it’s not about scouting or the subjective versus stats. It’s about evaluating and measuring performance versus looking at statistics that tradition tells you are important and guessing on a player’s psychology or mind-reading about a player’s psychological state. I’ll stick to the former.
“Must be Wren’s fault that there is no DH in the NL.” Heck yes it is! That or Bobby’s.
“Sheets – is his comeback over?” Hope not. There is a spot in the rotation that Tommy Hanson has recently vacated.
September 28th, 201211:34 am
Brian – I would argue that Kimbrell…clearly a power guy…also has pretty good control. This is a change (maturity and experience?) vs his minor league days. I also feel that he benefited greatly from studying under Billy Wagner…a lot more than if we had stuck with MFIKY.
Brian — Well, like I said – not to negate his accomplishments. Dude has had an amazing season. But IMO that the number of innings would make a huge difference. Double or triple his IP and I’d imagine walks would increase and K’s would decrease – maybe significantly.
But why even try to find out? He’s fine doing what he’s doing.
I still can’t believe that the Red Sox were able to save their franchise and unload hundreds of millions onto the Dodgers – who don’t really look like that great of a team.
September 28th, 201211:35 am
Kimbrel had one of the most dominant seasons in relief in baseball history in 2010.
In 2011, he cut his walk rate 43%, his hit rate 30%, and raised his strikeout rate 12%.
September 28th, 201211:36 am
From the previous blog which had 1,025 comments, TheOnlyBravesFan led the way with 75 posts. There were 136 different poster names. Here are the Top 25:
Rank Poster Frequency
1 TheOnlyBravesFan 75
2 Efrim 70
3 ncscoots 46
4 phil 33
5 Bay Area Steve 29
6 Mixxo 29
7 Brian from SC 28
8 Arkansas Transplant 26
9 Ghost of Chipper Jones 25
10 TennesseePaul 23
11 UKUGA 22
12 HooRah 21
13 Bat Masterson 20
14 Lew 20
15 DS1 19
16 Half Empty 19
17 P-Town Brave © 19
18 Murph 18
19 raleighbravefan 18
20 Capt.Mudd 17
21 Jeff R 17
22 cabravesfan 17
23 MiaBchBravesFan 16
24 Venice Jim 16
25 RC 15
Wow, talk about living in the past. I meant 2011 and 2012, respectively, not 2010 and 2011.
Shaun – Like I said, you’ll never understand that both factors are important in evaluating a player. You just won’t.
September 28th, 201211:37 am
Kimbrel is a beast. The way he misses bats is amazing and fun to watch. He makes the best hitters look silly. For me, easily my favorite pitcher to watch of all time, and I’ve been watching baseball for over 30 years.
September 28th, 201211:38 am
Kimbrel would get “worse” if he started, but Juan will get better? Hmmm.
MFin with more Tommy hate… the dude pitched okay last night. Not great, but decent. That’s 3 or 4 okay starts for him this month, and he has a better oppo. stat line and K/BB ratio.
September 28th, 201211:40 am
Wouldn’t be surprised if Kimbrel win the Cy Young. If there was someway to get his ERA under 1.00 I think he’d be a lock.
It sure seems like Sheets comeback is over, at least w/ the Braves. And since he couldn’t/didn’t finish the season starting, I find it hard to believe that he’d get a major league deal somewhere this winter. When was the last time the dude pitched?
I think Fredi should have left Hanson in there to finish the sixth. Little reason not to.
September 28th, 201211:41 am
Don’t care for the dh, but would rather have it in both leagues, rather than keep the status quo, which is asinine. Will be even more so next year, with interleague play all the time.
September 28th, 201211:43 am
Meanwhile, O’Flaherty hasn’t given up a run since dirt was young, and Venters seems to have re-discovered the strike zone. Those are three very scary guys.
Does anyone know what the hello “cross-site scripting” is, or why we need to prevent it?
Craig needs 4 shutout innings to end the year with a 0.98 ERA
September 28th, 201211:44 am
Maybe the NFL should have field goals in the AFC, but not the NFC. Wouldn’t that be great?
Will be even more so next year, with interleague play all the time.
That might indeed be the death nail for NL-style baseball.
September 28th, 201211:45 am
Gone for a while. Later, friends.
September 28th, 201211:46 am
“That might indeed be the death nail for NL-style baseball.”
Does baseball not understand that the two games/rosters are composed very differently? And that for an NL team to play interleague all year round is a HUGE disadvantage?
OnlyBraves – If Kimbrel were to pitch 175 opr more IP, I find it highly doubtful he’d still be bring 97+ MPH heat as often without his arm falling off. That alone wouild lead to an increase in walks in all likelihood and a decrease in his strike outs.
Like I said – not criticizing him at all. Just pointing out a natural consequence of the fatigue factor.
Hugo – A better idea…Maybe the NL and AL should quit playing each other except in the WS.
September 28th, 201211:47 am
4 innings in 6 games…eh. Doubtful. Three innings sounds about right.
September 28th, 201211:48 am
“4 innings in 6 games…eh. Doubtful. Three innings sounds about right.”
If only there was a way to schedule a 7th game.
My nephew, Evan O’Brien, caught a touchdown pass for Shawnee Mission South last night. Alas, they led early but lost 28-17 to SM West in their suburban Kansas City tilt.
Last comment before I go…Aren’t we playing the same number of interleague games, just spreading them out? I could be wrong, but that’s what I thought.
September 28th, 201211:50 am
Lew’s comment about Kimbrel points out why you should give the Cy Young to a starter who has a great year. If Kimbrel had shattered the save record this year, I could make more of a case for him.
September 28th, 201211:51 am
If only there was a way to schedule a 7th game.
A tiebreaker game with the Nats would be considered a regular-season game.
September 28th, 201211:52 am
“If Kimbrel had shattered the save record this year, I could make more of a case for him.”
He essentially has. Except it wasn’t the meaningless “save” record it was every pitching ratio of a closer in the history of the game.
raleigh, each team is playing 20 interleague games…the Braves played 18 this year.
September 28th, 201211:53 am
ncscoots – Exactly. He gets a save in that game and has a sub 1.00 ERA then he wins the Cy Young.
September 28th, 201211:58 am
Not every record – there were a few pitchers who had zero blown saves (with that many converted) in a season.
September 28th, 201211:59 am
fredi ought to hit chipper 3rd this weekend
I think I can say this with some conviction: Hitting against Craig Kimbrel in 2012 has been more difficult than hitting against any other pitcher in the history of the game, for a season.
Probably a more meaningless stat than pitcher wins or RBIs is the “Save”
September 28th, 201212:00 pm
And where exactly, would they have played that one other bat? Who would you have sat all year for the extra offense? – Lew
Hooters will be catering the affair tonight.
Brian – No doubt about it – KImbrel has been dominant all season.
September 28th, 201212:03 pm
Instead of little league players the girls from tilted kilt will be joining the guys at their positions before the game starts.
Mixxo – I leave you to McFann’s mercies.
I’m out of here y’all – still in the 30’s up here today – gray with leaves falling all over the place. No doyubt about it – fall has arrived in full force. It might hit the upper 20’s this weekend. I hate having to use the heat at $4 bucks a gallon for heating oil.
Nice article by Tyler Kepner in the NYT on Meds:
Kimbrel won’t even have as many saves as he did last year.
September 28th, 201212:05 pm
Bobby Booger Cox will give a speech.
Kimbrel can’t help the fact that the Braves have had fewer leads of 3 runs or less in the ninth inning this year.
September 28th, 201212:07 pm
Huston Street has 23 saves and no blown saves. His WHIP is the same as Kimbrel’s. Want to give him the Cy Young?
September 28th, 201212:11 pm
ralieghbravesfan I believe individual RBI are a COMBINATION of both skill and opportunity
and its worth noting that most guys dont get the opportunity if they dont have the skill.
September 28th, 201212:13 pm
i just know that when its all said and done in chipper career, and we look at his career stats, shaun is going to sneer and say “who cares? they’re not predictive of anything!”.
September 28th, 201212:14 pm
Huston Street has had a great year, and very few know about it. He does only have 38 innings, though. That’s like 60% of the innings Kimbrel has thrown.
congrats to young Mr O’Brien. Makes me think of the footage of Chipper on the pre game the other night.
What are “both” factors? There are a lot more than just two factors that are important. What are not important are statistics that don’t really measure anything relating to players’ skills and wild guesses about players’ emotional states in certain situations. But there are a lot of other factors that are important.
September 28th, 201212:19 pm
Brian, Fernando Rodney has 46 saves, two blown saves, and an ERA of 0.62. Should he get the Cy in the AL?
September 28th, 201212:20 pm
Also worth noting that every now and then a player that doesn’t have great skills, relative to other major league hitters, get plenty of opportunities. And what’s even more common is that merely good hitters get about as many opportunities if not more than some of the very best, and therefore we can’t really tell much about a hitter by his RBI.
Alfonso Soriano is among the league leaders in RBI. He’s not anywhere near one of the best hitters in the National League. He’s not even top 50. He’s probably not even top 60.
I certainly think Rodney is a candidate. I don’t study the AL very much, so I’d have to do some research to compare candidates. I will say Rodney hasn’t been nearly as dominant as Kimbrel has, who is having the greatest season in the history of relief pitching.
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