From: tom dunne on 2 Mar 2010 17:57
This is a bit off-topic, but I'm wondering about the benefit of stat-
oriented managers versus the 'traditional' types. As John mentioned,
there are plenty of recent examples of successful field managers who
aren't really noted for particularly forward thinking about baseball
theory. Joe Torre, Bobby Cox, Jim Leyland, Lou Pinella and plenty of
others have been very successful despite starting their careers prior
to the SABR era and continue to lead winning teams today. Maybe a
statistcially minded manager isn't that import. There is something to
be said for intelligent bullpen management and sensible lineup
construction, but making those decisions properly really won't make a
bad team good.
If I had to choose between the two, I'd much rather have a general
manager who understands how to use stats to evaluate players than a
manager who uses stats to deploy those players. If the Reds had
provided Dusty with better players, he wouldn't have to choose between
guys like Stubbs and Dickerson to lead off (honestly, likely neither
is good enough to play every day), nor would he have to consider
miscasting a guy like Phillips as a cleanup hitter for lack of any
clearly better option. On the other hand, even the most gifted and
insightful manager couldn't do anything to save a late-era Bowden
team, one of those squads chock full of 5-tool wannabe outfielders and
scrapheap pitching retreads.
Dusty generally has been successful when he's had talent, suggesting
he's good at managing talent (ther personalities moreso than the
performances.) He might really be fine on a team filled with solid
veterans and a few stars at critical positions (I expect he could get
playoff caliber seasons out of the Phils or Cards just fine, massaging
egos and keeping guys happy, etc.) Asked to guide a younger team, or
to manage around a bunch of deficiencies... he hasn't shown he can do
that, but fewer managers ever really do.
From: John Kasupski on 2 Mar 2010 17:59
On Tue, 2 Mar 2010 12:41:47 -0800 (PST), RJA <agentvaughn(a)gmail.com> wrote:
>We all care about runs! The point is still that guys who have a
>better chance of reaching base should bat ahead of guys with a good
>chance of driving them in. That's how runs are maximized.
According to the principles of statistical analysis, yes. But again, the manager
of this particular ballclub does not subscribe to those principles. If that's
what you're looking for, then have fun watching LaRussa manage the Cardinals
this year, or whoever is the lowest paid manager in baseball manage Oakland.
With the Reds, you're just going to be frustrated, pissed off, and stressed out
all season because THAT AIN'T GONNA HAPPEN!
>that it's spread out over hundreds of games just makes those odds more
>reliable on any given day because the samples are larger.
I think you proceed from a false assumption. It regularly occurs that in any
particular game we can observe events that are wholly unpredictable regardless
of how much one chooses to analyze statistics of past games. The guy who hasn't
hit a home run all year long hits two of them in the same game in September. The
Gold Glove shortstop who hasn't made an error in weeks throws a ball into the
bullpen and allows two runs to score. The closer who has been lights out all
year goes out in the ninth and gets smacked around like a ho' in a dark alley.
This is true of teams as well as individuals. The Tampa Bay Rays played for ten
years without even having a winning season, then in their eleventh year found
themselves in the WS - and even after the season is over with, you can't still
predict their eventual W/L record from the stats: their Pythagorean W/L was
92-70, but in reality they finished 97-65.
The numbers that sabermetricians collect are the result of what has happened on
the field. They are past events, and those past events do not affect future
events. The guy stepping up to the plate in an 0-for-33 slump has the same
chance of getting a base knock as he does when he's got a 17-game hitting streak
going....which is why you cannot use statistical analysis to tell me with any
reasonable degree of certainty who is going to win on Opening Day, or who is
going to win the division, or who is going to win the WS. For one thing, you
can't analyze data on the 2010 season until it has been collected, which cannot
be done until after the games have been played.
And once the games have been played, we won't need statistical analysis to tell
us who just won the WS; all we will have to do is look down at the field and see
who's got a goosepile going out there by the pitcher's mound!.
From: John Kasupski on 2 Mar 2010 23:41
Sorry I had to bail last night, but it was already after 6 PM local time when I
finished my last post and I had to chair a board meeting at 7. But this deserves
On Tue, 2 Mar 2010 14:28:35 -0800 (PST), HTP <tmbowman25(a)yahoo.com> wrote:
>On Mar 2, 12:17�pm, John Kasupski <w2...(a)spamfilter.verizon.net>
>> I mean, what about those Oakland teams that some people hold up as justification
>> of the whole stathead way of looking at thing? McGwire, Canseco, both Giambis,
>> Tejada, those dudes were all juiced, how do we know they didn't make up for a
>> lot of boneheaded personnel decisions on the part of Sandy Alderson/Billy Beane?
>> And the Yankees' resurgence in the late 90's apparently wasn't the result of
>> Dave Cashman's discovery of sabermetrics after all...simply a "natural"
>> consequence of having juicers Clemens, Pettite, Giambi, A-Rod around.
>Now its personal...
>Giambi was late to the party and never won a series with the Yankees.
>ARod arrived in what... 2003 or 2004?
Giambi did play in a WS with the Yankees though...2003 when they lost to the
Marlins...and he was part of Yankees teams who also played in the ALDS in 2002,
2005, 2006, and 2007. And that still ignores Clemens and Pettite.
It's not only what the juiced players did during postseason play, although
certainly that has to be wondered about, and validity of the results of those
postseason series - but they had to play 162 games before that to get there, and
the results of those games are tainted too.
>> Oh, yeah - Theo Epstein, another darling of the stathead crowd...where would his
>> BoSox have been in 2004 without juicers David Ortiz and Manny Ramirez, and how
>> many other BoSox of that era escaped being implicated by the Mitchell Report
>> only because George Mitchell happens to be on the BoSox' Board of Directors?
>You tell me. Who looked like they were juicing John?
Before they were outed, I wouldn't have said that Ortiz or Ramirez *looked* like
they were juicing. But we now know they've both tested positive for PEDs, and
Manny has served a suspension for it last year. In any case, my point was not to
implicate any particular player(s) or team(s) so much as to point out to Rich -
who introduced steroids to the discussion in the first place - that if you're
going to question the success of Baker-managed teams in San Francisco and
Chicago because of the presence of the juiiced Bonds and Sosa, then you have to
also acknowledge the presence of juiced players in other clubhouses and question
the influence of those juiced players on the sucess of their teams as well.
> And what team rightly should have won the AL East in 2004? The Blue
I dunno. I do know that Ed Sprague, the Blue Jays' 3B in their WS years of 1992
and 1993, has admitted to using PEDs and corked bats.
In other words, I generally agree with this:
>I think that if the exact truth ever came out, you'd find that there
>were players from every team at one time or another, including the
>reds, that were juicing. If there was any effect on the game, it
>probably ends up a wash.
However, I do not agree with this:
>The Mitchell report list Hal Morris as a user. Case closed. Rhoids
>aint helping anyone hit homeruns. Lets move on.
That's like saying that nitromethane doesn't help race cars go faster because a
Volkswagen Beetle modified to run on it fails to set a new speed record for race
cars. Hal Morris never was a home run hitter. That's not the case with Bonds,
Sosa, McGwire, Rodriguez, Sheffield, Canseco. I'm not claiming steroids turned
them into home run hitters when they otherwise wouldn't have been. What I
question is whether juiced players would have been hitting AS MANY as they did,
and what effect juiced players had on the success of the teams they played on.
Not to mention the effect on statistical data, and the validity of theories that
have resulted from analysis of that data. That's why I said to Rich that if he's
going to open that particular can of worms, we may as well stop talking about
stats entirely because we don't really know what's valid from the steroids era
and what's not, and we never will. That's all I meant by any of this. We can't
just selectively apply that criteria to one manager's teams, whether the manager
is Dusty or LaRussa or Torre or my dear Aunt Rose. When we start doing that, we
open one real humdinger of a Pandora's Box. Better off not to go there and, like
you said, Henry, just move on.
From: David Short on 3 Mar 2010 11:47
On 3/2/2010 5:59 PM, John Kasupski wrote:
> The numbers that sabermetricians collect are the result of what has happened on
> the field. They are past events, and those past events do not affect future
They do not determine future events, but they darn do affect them.
You go 17-20 in your first 20 at bats and you'll likely get a good long
look after you cool down.
You go 0-20 and your gonna be lucky to get another shot.
> The guy stepping up to the plate in an 0-for-33 slump has the same
> chance of getting a base knock as he does when he's got a 17-game hitting streak
> going....which is why you cannot use statistical analysis to tell me with any
> reasonable degree of certainty who is going to win on Opening Day, or who is
> going to win the division, or who is going to win the WS.For one thing, you
> can't analyze data on the 2010 season until it has been collected, which cannot
> be done until after the games have been played.
....but I can backsubstitute 2009 data and make reasonable forecasts.
They will be wrong, but that's the nature of any predictive model.
> And once the games have been played, we won't need statistical analysis to tell
> us who just won the WS; all we will have to do is look down at the field and see
> who's got a goosepile going out there by the pitcher's mound!.
But once we're done smiling about the goosepile, we can go back and
figure out...should they have won or did a "better" team chock?
From: HTP on 3 Mar 2010 13:48
On Mar 3, 10:15 am, John Kasupski <w2...(a)spamfilter.verizon.net>
> >Why do we think that and why will he continue
> >to bat 3rd for the Cardinals?
> "We" think that (and it goes without saying that I don't, necessarily) because
> it's natural to expect players who have performed at a high level to continue to
> do so. He will continue to bat 3rd for the Cardinals for as long as LaRussa
> feels he deserves to hit there.
and how do we know that a player has "performed at a high level"?
Further up the thread you committed several collosal errors of logic,
and rather than answer those individually i decided its best to tie it
all up with a bow and ask you the above question.