Tuesday, February 27, 2007

PCOW nominees

Sorry this post is late, but lets get a discussion going on who this weeks PCOW(NSBP) winner should be.


Jeff said...

Clearly the winners are Bellamy and Riise of Liverpool, who got into an altercation after Riise refused to sing karaoke with Bellamy that ended with Bellamy hitting Riise's legs with a golf club at 2am. This of course led to Liverpool upsetting mighty Barcelona 2-1 behind goals by (surprise!) Bellamy and Riise (with an assist by Bellamy). Bellamy also celebrated his goal by pretending to swing a golf club, make it impossible to award the cookie to anyone but this dynamic duo.

Matt said...

My cookie goes to Mike Schmidt, for apologizing for making this remark about Pat Burrel and Adam Dunn back on February 8:

"When their careers are over, they are going to wonder how much they left on the table, how much they left on the field, if only they had choked up with two strikes, spread their stances out. What they are doing now is not great. It is mediocrity."

But that's not all- in addition to insinuating that strikeouts = mediocrity (by the way, a decrease in strikeouts is almost always a good indicator of decreased production, see: Pierre, Juan). He's also a vocal member of the Hall of Fame Veteran's Committee, who failed to vote in a player for the third consecutive year. Previously, Schmidt has had the stance that if the writers don't vote a player in, they don't deserve to be in.

He flip-flopped this time and backed 13-time Gold Glove winner Jim Kaat, who fell well short of election.

For being a shining example snobby traditionalism in the face of evidence and then flip-flopping in the face of popular opinion, Mike Schmidt deserves a cookie.

Xenod said...

So, striking out is good, yet you've argued in the past that strike outs are worse than double plays. I don't understand.

Matt said...

That is a gross exaggeration of what I was saying. Schmidt is saying that players who strike out a lot are mediocre. There are numerous studies that prove that untrue; with notable exceptions like Joe DiMaggio and Albert Pujols, offensive production and strikeout rate are inversely proportional. If you are looking for a player who will, over the course of a season, put up the best numbers- you should look for a player who has the best stats, and forget about strikeouts.

In a situation-by-situation basis, meanwhile, there are times when the strikeout is "meh" at best and other times where it is preferable to a weakly hit ground ball. However, I was saying to you that there are situations in which a batted ball of any kind are preferable to a strikeout- man on third with less than two outs, for instance. I suggested that a player who is able to adjust to this situation and more reliably get contact would be a more desirable hitter.

Schmidt is suggesting that Burrell and Dunn choke up and go for a single on every two strike count, a strategy that would likelyproduce mediocrity out of an otherwise productive hitter. While adjusting approach at the plate at times when it is +EV to make contact could be desirable, adjusting in every plate appearance would probably result in decreased overall production for that player (more GIDP, more singles where there could be HR). And for that fallacy, Schmidt deserves a cookie.