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Friday, September 10, 2004
Halve-Not's

Tonight after the game, I sifted through ESPN's sortable stats to get a grasp of how some of the Sox have performed after the break.

Ah hell, I'll admit it, I went there with the express purpose of seeing how bad Jose Valentin has been since the break. Yep, you guessed it; Jose's been bad. Just how bad is truly mystifying. He has the second lowest batting average of any player with at least 100 AB's since the break.

Who's the worst, you ask? None other than our very own Joe Borchard.

Of the 273 players who fit the criteria, the two very worst are White Sox. Just in case you couldn't quite wrap your brain aroud that one, I'll repeat it. Jose Valentin and Joe Borchard rank 272 and 273, respectively, in BA after the break. Other dubious performers include Joe Crede(.229AVG) and Timo Perez(.226AVG), at 238th and 243rd overall respectively.

That's 4 players, 4 "regulars", in the bottom 30 in baseball since the break. Those guys are getting trotted out there everyday. And we're supposed to try and win like this?

Jose Valentin is last in BA among all shortstops in baseball who have at least 8 AB's after the break. That's freakin' bad...

I know somebody's going to read this and say "but batting average doesn't tell the whole story." For those, I included this excel spreadsheet. It's got all sorts of fun stuff in there. I even added the Runs Created stat.

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BAH -- I was in the middle of a massive update here, and my computer crashed. I lost several spreadsheets, and an entire rant on how useless Timo Perez is. It's late, and I'm not in the mood to devote any more time or webspace to that guy.

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One of the spreadsheets that I lost was me playing with the Runs Created formula.
Runs Created = ((Hits+Walks)*Total Bases)/(At-bats+Walks)
I was using the formula to see how it compared with the actual runs scored by each team. Overall, the formula was about 1.5% low for all of baseball. The two things that caught my eye before the crash were the White Sox and the Cubs.

The White Sox had the largest deviation to the positive of any team in baseball. What does that mean? The Sox scored more runs over that expected by the formula than any other team. This is probably due to the Sox incredible clutch hitting, on which I have an unfinished entry, but chose to post something on Soxtalk instead. In short the Sox have produced more runs from less baserunners.

The Cubs, on the other hand, had the largest deviation to the negative of any team in baseball. My guess is this is because the Cubs have hit a lot of HR's. A ton of solo-HR's. That increases the TB count, which has the largest effect of any variable in the RC formula.

I was going to use the data to compare how the RC formula compared to the Pythagorean W/L, and whether the "lucky" teams over-achieved in both categories. Come to think of it, BP might actually already do that with their 2nd and 3rd order winning percentages. I'll take a look at that stuff some other time. I'll need something to occupy my time in the offseason. So until then, Jose Valentin has been bad; Timo Perez is worthless; and Joe Borhcard and Joe Crede bad too, but at least they are young.