Friday, May 21, 2010

Friday Baseball Post

One of the old-time sabermetric findings is that people don't learn to hit past the age of, oh, 25 or so.  99% of the time, that's true.  I'm not sure why, but I really do think that Andres Torres is the other 1%.  It's not that he's anything special now, but he was a puny singles hitter who would have needed a .320 BA to be acceptable, and now he walks and gets tons of extra base hits.  It isn't really enough PAs to mean much, but I'm a believer, for what it's worth. 

Meanwhile, I have nothing analytic this week, but for those who want good stuff I'll direct you to Steven Rubio's discussion of...oh, I don't know how to characterize it.  When narrative and sabermetrics meet, perhaps? 


  1. I'd point out, about Torres, that he has always had good OBAs in the minors that apparently did not translate, in very limited opportunities, to the majors. (I love, especially for its inclusion of minor league stats.)

    The primary difference last year and this year compared to his past is that his batting average (and major league walks) have increases--but in very small samples (172 plate appearances last year and, so far this year, 123). It makes me wonder about two things: Can he sustain his walk rates throguh the season? And, have his higher batting averages been a result of a real change in approach, or are they a result of a higher-than-is-sustainable set of outcomes on balls-in-play? We may get some clue by the end of the year.

  2. Sounds about right to me. But I'm only commenting here because I need an excuse to write this somewhere, and I can't wait for Friday: in the history of baseball, I'm pretty sure that no team has succeeded in scoring more runs because they rejiggered things to get an extra middle infielder into the lineup. Especially when we're talking about guys such as Renteria, Sanchez, and Uribe.

  3. Well, maybe if that additional middle infielder were Rogers Hornsby or Joe Morgan or Cal Ripken...but then no rejiggering would be necessary...


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