It looks to me like that’s telling us that AL hitters hit about .262/.331/.420 this season. I’ll bet we didn’t need any fancy stats to figure that one out. 🙂
And people were worried we weren’t going to have enough to write about. Pah!
Baseball Prospectus has a cool junk report, ‘Starting Pitchers’ Quality of Batters Faced‘. It’s the composite lines of all the hitters pro-rated yadda yadda yadda…
Gil Meche’s average dude faces is a .262/.333/.423 hitter
How’s that for amazingly useless information? Next time someone tells rags on Meche, you tell them “Hey, Meche faced batters who hit for SEVEN MORE POINTS of OPS, so you lay off on poor Gil. We’re lucky he won any games at all, facing mashers like that.”
It only has any use in demonstrating the differences between divisions. The Diamondbacks pitchers, for instance, are all hanging around the bottom of the list, along with the Rockies guys, and the Giants… all of who got to face the punchless Dodgers over and over (and then the punchless Rockies).
How about those Sacramento Rivercats, huh? Six pitchers, sixteen position players… this wasn’t a game, it was a circus parade. I’m glad I didn’t try and score this bad boy.
Great moment of tonight: Edgar’s last at-bat people stood, applauded and kept applauding. It was awesome. Never content to let fans have their own moment, of course, after a couple of pitches the M’s started to do the dumb clappy sound effects and co-opt the moment (and not as if they’re trying to assist, as with herding the Eee-chee-ro chants together). It was cool though.
Overheard at the Ballpark, 9/25: “I still think John Olerud is our MVP.”
Last year when the Angels and Giants met in the World Series, one of the things people pointed to was that both teams had the best run differential in their leagues, and so maybe beyond the vagries of a couple wins breaking one way or another, they were indeed the best teams and the Wild Card was good because it ensured they had… anyway.
The M’s scored 770 runs to date, allowed 627 (+143). Oakland’s only a bit behind them, at 758-618 (+140, though Mr. Fairly will tell you the important thing to know about Oakland’s offense is… come on, you know the words… that they may not get as many hits, but they get the key hits).
New York’s at +155, Boston’s at +156 (and jeez, what an offensive attack these guys have… we complain the Mariners fielded Edgar+Boone+crap for much of this year, and when those guys don’t hit it’s lights out on the lineup, and the Red Sox are top-to-bottom OBP guys around two similarly outstanding hitters, and you see the result).
Seattle, for all of their flaws, still managed to hang with the bigger dogs, but Oakland pulled out the title. So here’s the question: Why?
Here’s a couple of random stats that I’ve been chewing on today…
Seattle became a .500 team in close games: 16-15 in games decided by a run, 14-15 in two-run games, 12-10 in three-run games, 14-12 in 4 run games. Once you get out to 6+ run difference, the Mariners become (essentially) undefeatable. That’s weird.
Oakland, by contrast, got some breaks: 25-20 1 run, 20-14 2 run, 18-7 3 run.
It’s probably too stupid to make anything of, and yet.. what kind of games were the M’s winning? Games where the beat the stuffing out of the other team. When that happened, shut the door. Otherwise, it was a coin flip. I don’t know what that means, either. And yeah, I know, you’re thinking “but Derek, you’re a professional baseball writer, shouldn’t you be able to interpret this stuff?”
“Yes, dear reader, yes I should.” No, but seriously, I’m throwing this stuff out there because I’m curious what the rest of the world thinks. Writing columns is like cross-examinations: you don’t ask questions you can’t answer for the reader. I’ve got more discarded columns just this year on my PC than the Tigers have losses. Than Viagra ads you’ve seen this season. Than…
The problem with the beat-the-stuffing=wins stats is you’d think then the Mariners were winning all the games when they could match a good pitcher (Moyer, 1st-half Meche, Pineiro, good Freddy, good Franklin) against a scrub. But they weren’t: the M’s split the season series with Texas (oh, the humanity) and their starters endorse lighter fluid in Texas (“Fans, when even I can’t get the fire going, I turn to Bob’s Extra Flamy Barbeque Start Stuff”). They did beat the stripes off the Tigers (8-1), but Tampa had awful starting pitching and they took 5 of 9 from the M’s. Anahiem’s pitching was a disaster for much of the season, and the M’s only managed to go 11-8.
I blame Gillick.