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Tuesday, May 07, 2013


I see that we all stayed up for this one. After that series with the Marlins, I'm surprised that they managed to put together six hits let alone score six runs.

Whoda thunk that in a Kendrick-Lincecum faceoff, the Phillies would have the favorable matchup?

The Phillies beat Bumgarner, and scored actual runs while Cliff Lee was on the mound IN San Francisco??

At least Cholly is finally starting to break up Utley & Howard in the lineup pretty consistently.

Outcome against Lopez wasn't good (Howard K) but it did force the Giants to give an IBB to Young.
--posted by MG

Yes to the value of the IBB, but Charlie has broken up Utley and Howard with literally the worst player he could put there in Young. Nice game for him tonight, but he just erases baserunners. This team's goal should be to get Howard up (in the pre-LOOGY innings) with as many men on base as possible.

It'll never happen, but tonight against Lincecum Id like to see:


When Lopez and/or Affeldt come, plug in D.Young or Mayberry or Frandsen as indicated.

So bat the guy with the .398 OBP 8th in the order?

Redburb: And also break up the lefties with a lefty.

We have an early leader for today's crazy post.

Yes, Young is the obvious leadoff hitter among this group. Which means it will never happen.

RedBurb, if you take away the anti-OBP that his GIDPs create, Young should not be in the middle of where the runs get created. If you want to argue that he shouldn't bat behind Revere, I agree with that 100%.

Do you really think he'll continue with a .398 OBP?

I think that gif is giving me vertigo.

So, to fit in with beerleaguer's manic personality today I'm back to thinking we'll make the 2nd wildcard, at least until our next loss.

Do you really think he'll continue with a .398 OBP?

Posted by: Edmundo | Tuesday, May 07, 2013 at 07:55 AM

bittel was talking about the lineup tonight. MY has an OBP of .398 as of today. Why are you batting the guy with the highest OBP 8th in the order?

Kyle Kendrick (3-1, 2.43) takes on Tim Lincecum (2-1, 4.41)...

Very strange to see this.

Young should be up with no one on base as much as possible, to maximize his value. If you don't lead him off, then put the fastest possible runner (base-stealing threat) in the lineup ahead of him.

Young has 8 RBI this season, and has erased 10 men on first base, along with himself, in GIDPs. OBP is not the relevant issue; it's what happens when he ISN'T getting on base that answers the question.

@TTI:And why are you concerned about breaking up lefties against Lincecum? When the lefty relievers come, you pinch-hit if needed.

MG: "It would be nicer if more of those shots were of the non-solo variety."

Speaking of Brown. The issue is that he's hitting behind our new everyday RF, Delmon Young. He's going to be hitting with the bases empty, a lot.

@MG: Yes. So move him up in the lineup against righties.

Two thoughts...well, three actually.

1. For the first time in 5 years probably, I didn't stay up to watch the game on the West Coast in May. I always at least stay awake for the first 3-4 innings. This time around, I passed out at 9:30 pm (defended my thesis in the afternoon and, of course, passed but that mountain is back to the office 100% of the time to catch up on work)

2. Liked that Mayberry played CF against a LHP over Revere. It shows UC can think outside of the box occasionally and recognize that Mayberry might give them a better chance to win than Revere right now. Even if such moves dont work out, they are still the correct moves.

3. Good to see the offense show up for Clifton Phifer.

@NEPP: congratulations. What was your thesis subject?

Well, I have to say I was a little disappointed that our Demonic guy hit the ball too far and nobody was on third base; but I knew we was gonna win when I saw Jimmie and Demon make outs that were productive. And that's what we gotta do, is make outs, productively. That way we'll be producing outs. And everyone knows you got to produce outs to be productive.

I guess this team isn't dead quite yet. Last 7 days Brown's OPS is 1.045. Please let him find this power stroke for good.

Six back in the loss column after this well-played game. The Philadelphia Phillies must string together more than 3 wins -- especially against the really good teams -- to remove the stench of getting beat up by the Marlins and those loses in Cleveland.

One more thing - the next time Howard waves weakly at low and away strike 3, Charlie should bench him for a week and fine him $50,000. If all the "Little Chip" has left is warning track power, he should be held accountable for his OBP. Just an opinion, but when Howie is in one of his "automatic out" modes, the lineup is really crippled.

Just finished watching the 6:00- 8:30 a.m. replay while doing morning work...a good option for early risers who have a hard time staying awake for even east coast games.

It was hard not to stay away from the scores this morning before I watched, but well worth the excellent surprise win. I happen to like M. Young a lot, and it is good to see him with the extra base hits despite the GIDP.

What I did discover, however, is that the background chatter about seagulls and hats and everything else besides the game is even more annoying first thing in the morning than it is at night.

"loses" = "losses"

found this on NEPP's thesis: Its actually on the effects of military spending on political strategy and how that led to WWI. (Basically how the tail ended up wagging the dog and causing a war due to short-sightedness...just stretch that out for 100 pages)
This is a study of military spending among the European powers of the day, I take it?

Just saw the highlights from last nite. Wow, did Brown get a hold of that or what? Inside fastball, off a lefty, very encouraging.

lol, a .333 .398 .423 line from Young and gets the "worst player to put in the 3rd spot" line.

Le Sigh

DOM is forcing the scouting report to change with another bomb on an inside fastball. Taking Bumgarner into McCovey's cove will definitely get people's attention.

If he can make pitchers pay for mistakes on the inside corner, then he'll start getting a lot more balls on outer half where he is can start extending his arms and hitting the other way - something he was said to do well as a hitter, but hasn't been able to show too much of it early on.

I am having good feelings about Dom finally. Yeah his average is low, but considering his low average, his OBP isn't terrible. 250-313 isnt terrible. It's a good sign that he is displaying more power than most expected at this time. We'll see if he keeps it up tho, but more power never hurt. He was getting penciled in for ~20hr a year, not the 29 he is on pace for.

The crazy post of the day should henceforth be known as the "MVPTommy Memorial"

bittel: The issue is not the fact they are facing Lincecum. The issue is that when a LOOGY enters late in the game it doesn't force a manager to make a choice with the Phillies lefties.

***This is a study of military spending among the European powers of the day, I take it?***

Essentially...the gist of it comes down to the fact that the nation-states of Europe were spending so much on their military buildups in the decades leading up to the war that they were under enormous pressure to justify those expenditures to their voters...thus causing WWI itself. A vicious circle if you will. It goes on for 80+ pages but that's the 30 sec version.

People are obsessing with the GIDP too much. They are a pain in the ass and definitely kill innings, but MYoung is getting on base close to 40% of his PA while GIDP at 8%.

You can't construct a lineup prioritizing the 8% event.

Good article on Kendrick:

Kendrick is in agreement that the change-up has changed his career path, and the message is not just coming from hitters at the plate. Last season he had a meeting with Atlanta's Freddie Freeman at first base.

"Quit throwing me that change-up," Freeman told Kendrick. "I'm looking for it, and I still can't hit it."

Cool stuff

lol, a .333 .398 .423 line from Young and gets the "worst player to put in the 3rd spot" line.

Le Sigh

Posted by: johnnysanz3 | Tuesday, May 07, 2013 at 09:10 AM

Didn't you watch last night's game? In the 7th inning with the Phil's leading 5-1, he grounded into a double play.

TTI: That LOOGY is coming in to face Howard or Utley, typically. If he comes in to face Utley, then you can ph for Brown if the situation calls for it. Nix too, if it comes to that.

johnny: nice job of letting a stat do your thinking for you. You too, Mike.

Did you watch the Cleveland game? With the Phils down 5-0 in the 7th and their fastest two runners on base, Young essentially ended the game with a DP.

With Young batting 8th and Rollins batting 1st, having Young on first would help the theory that Rollins will ground into 20-30 DPs this year. Maybe that's why bittel wants Young to bat there.

Lorecore explained it well Bittel. 40% vs 8%

So you want to put yourself in a position where you are willingly taking the bat out of your three hole hitter (who has been hot as of late) to pinch hit with a guy that may be Mayberry, but could also be Kevin Frandsen?


Its good to see Dom finally coming together hopefully.

Once he starts seeing more pitches outside, I think he'll start hitting a bunch more doubles too.

Lorecore: We've seen it before. Remember last year when all he did was walk and loft singles to shallow left field the entire second half?

He did not. We're talking about the importance of leaving runners on base for Howard (or tentatively now, Brown), who can at times actually drive people in.

The point is, Young's value goes way down with a runner on first base and less than two outs, since it means Howard is disproportionately less likely to come up with men on base than he would otherwise be. That's how this team is constructed. I want Brown and Howard up then (Utley would be fine too of course, but I like him hitting forward in the lineup).

re: Young GIDP in 8% of his PA

No one in MLB history has ever GIDP in 8% of their PA during a full season. The highest % anyone has ever GIDP was Ernie Lombardi in 1933 at 6.9%.

The last person to even GIDP more than 5% of their PA was AJ Pierzynski in 2004 at 5.3%.

Basically, MYoung's rate of GIDP is even more unsustainable than his .400 BABIP.

The better measurement would be to look at what happens in Young's ABs when a man is on first with less than two outs. THOSE are the key situations, since they're the ones in which Howard and the 5 hitter are likely to bat with men on.

I suspect the data will show, given his performance thus far, that it would be better for Young to stand there with his bat on his shoulder than to try to get on base.

Bat him first, or eighth. It's not hard to see.

Bittel: Young can definitely GiDP with the best of them, but you can only maximize your lineup with a mind towards maximizing runners so much.

You want Young to get a lot of PAs while he's hot, and that's not going to happen if you bury him down the lineup. He's also (handily, but not as important as how well he's doing) able to break up the lefties to prevent opposing teams killing a 7th-inning, 2-3-4 situation with a single LOOGY.

Yes, Young coming to bat with one of Rollins/Utley (especially Utley) at 1st is potentially trouble, but so is Howard leading off the 2nd because the guys in front him have a combined OBP of 917.

Phillibuster: We've established that it is okay for bittel to put lefites in between other lefties.

bittel: this is like 100th topic that you've started with a foundation of small sample sizes.

It may sound saracstic or juvenile - but I am being 100% genuine: Could you please read this page before attempting to start a worthwhile debate in the future?

lorecore: your argument seems to be: no one has ever GIDPed more than 6.9%. Therefore Young's 8% is unsustainable.

Looks to me like Young hits a ton of relatively hard-hit ground balls. Is that sustainable? because I don't think he's going t get any faster as the season goes along.

@phill: I get that point, and struggle with it, since having Howard lead off is just what I'm trying to avoid. The best three-hitter on this team is the person least likely to make either one or two outs in that spot.

who is that? It's not Young.

TTI: Honestly, the LRL split isn't that important to me. Sure, it's nice later in the game, and those are generally the higher-leverage situations, but if Utley is OBPing in the high .350s I don't care too much if he hits before Howard. Same goes for Brown.

The vast majority of PAs over the course of a season will come against the starter, and if he's a righty then a triple-lefty setup's advantage in the early innings could outweigh the later deficiencies.

Young's ability to get on-base and hit (more recently, with doubles power) is just something you want near the top of your lineup regardless of handedness. Being able to slip him in between two lefties is more of a bonus situation than the primary reasoning.

Let's talk about how bittel's increased post rate is bringing down the Beerleaguer smart-post average. SSS of course, but it's a troubling trend.

What is the argument against Young leading off on this team?

Bittel: But that's not strictly true. In fact, Young is the player whose PA is least likely to lead to an out at the moment.

Now, you can weigh GiDPs as having a more deleterious effect than your standard K/pop/weak-grounder, and I wouldn't say that's unfair... But while a GiDP 8% of the time is really bad, he's also getting on-base 40% of the time.

Even if you feel that we should subtract that GiDP directly from his OBP, he'd still have the 2nd-best OBP among position players on the roster (best with at least 50 ABs).

I think Delmon Young would slot perfectly into the 5th spot in the Iron Pigs lineup, hitting right behind Ruf.

NEPP: I assume your "military powers buildup pre WW1" was really a metaphor on the rising payrolls of the AL East powers?

Hopefully Dom Brown keeps it up..cause Revere-Young-Mayberry are hitting terribly. At least a Revere-Mayberry outfield would be good defensively..

But I want to count a GIDP for what it is, TWO OUTS, not just a failure to get on base. A GIDP has got to carry more weight in order to reflect the greater likelihood that a runner on first will come around to score if he's not forced at second.

Simply dropping out the GIDPs doesn't seem to account for this.

Mayberry is a better version of D. Young, hits LHP better, better defensively, faster, pretty much everything lol. Not sure why Young should ever start in RF over Mayberry vs a LHP. Their vs RHP ops is like .020 different, so maybe never considering the defensive difference.

Iceman: How many starts away is Delmon from hitting your limit of 20?

I know he's still not exactly mashing at the plate yet, but any recent reports on how Ruf has been looking in LF?

Last I saw he was only starting there about 2/3 of the time, and was charged with 1 error in about 33 chances.

I really find it hard to believe that Brown (LF) and Young (RF) is a better defensive OF than Ruf (LF) and Brown (RF).

Bittel: If you want to count GiDPs as double the number of non-OBP (i.e.: count each GiDP as 2 ABs in which an out was obtained), that would drop Young's OBP by...

About .020 points.

It would still give him a .378 OBP, and he'd still be leading the team by .045 points (over .060 points among players with at least 50 ABs).

Cyclic: While Brown is obviously preferable to Young in RF, Young hasn't done anything particularly egregious in the field yet (yet) of which I'm aware.

Domonic's arm definitely plays better in right than left, but from everything I've seen thus far, Delmon actually gets better reads on balls than Domonic does. Brown can make up for it more with his speed and athleticism, but overall he probably shouldn't be playing right unless you've got an iron glove (a la Ruf) in LF.

Phillibuster, why do you have to go ruining the argument with math.


It's doubly confounding, since I was a lit/history double in my undergrad days. You'd think I'd know better.

Thanks, buster.

Then again, outside of ST (where we all know how you play really matters), I don't recall Ruf doing anything particularly egregious in the field (yet).

Appreciate the effort, philli, but that's precisely responsive to the issue I'm raising.

Mike, I get that you favor the annihilate human judgment in these matters in favor of a statisticized form of knowledge. I get it. But the math still has to be germane to the point raised to solve the question at hand. If it is, I'm all for the math.

Young's GIDPs don't simply mean he's out, but that the runner on first base is out too, and with THAT out is lost the increased percentage that he will score. It's not like making two outs from home plate. It's worse.

nice video, Brown really tagged that ball. Really hope this keeps up. Phillies need some young blood to step up as the old guard fades.

I was also a lit/history double major. . . now I'm an accountant. Is there anything more useless than a humanities degree?

I know the problem with Delmon Young. He's hitting .150/.250/.350. Guy should have spent more time in LV. Same goes for Ruiz. Freddy Galvis OPS is .180 higher than Young's.

re Michael Young:

Did you all know he's hitting .381/.480/.429 with a man on first so far this year? He's OPS'd over .900 with a man on first in 4 of the last 5 years.

Right now, Young is the best hitter in the lineup. But that's probably not as significant as what to expect from him going forward. He's hit .301/.344/.430 in his last ~2000 PA.

He should be somewhere in the first 3-4 spots right now. Utley-Young-Galvis-Howard-Brown-Rollins. Galvis in LF, Brown in RF.

I actually do agree with one thing bittel's saying: it's ok to put a lefty in between Utley & Howard against a RH starter, because you can always pinch hit for him later in the game. The problem is: he uses Dom, who is not someone you'd want to pinch hit for. It should be Nix. But Nix has been relegated to the role of permanent bench player now that Delmon Young is here. It's all good, though, because Delmon Young is raking. Oh wait. That .350 is his slugging percentage? I thought it was his batting average.

Philli, I mean not responsive. Sorry, trying to do too many things at once.

I know I keep harping on how "abysmal" Kratz has been, but seriously...


Brian Schneider could do that.

I know I know I know. On the list of problems with this team (now that Chooch's suspension is over) backup catcher is like 145th.

***I was also a lit/history double major. . . now I'm an accountant. Is there anything more useless than a humanities degree?***

Along those lines, I know a guy that got his BA in Psychology but has zero interest in going for a higher degree. Its got to be one of the more useless 4 year degrees. This coming from a guy with a BA in History and a soon to be MA in Int'l Relations.

Sophis, what Michael Young did four or five years ago is about as irrelevant to what can be expected of him going forward as, well, pretty much anything. Which you undoubtedly understand.

I have no problem really with M. Young batting 2nd or 3rd...they just need to have more hit/run's on when he's at the plate to avoid the DP.

Sophist-- Galvis as the everyday left fielder?

Young should stay in the 3-hole no matter what. It helps later in the games by making the opposing team burn multiple arms because they can't go to the LOOGY and have Utley-Howard back to back.

"Young has 8 RBI this season, and has erased 10 men on first base."

Any time you're using RBIs to make your point, you're in slippery territory. Young is hitting .370 with men on base and .360 with RISP. In 56 PAs with men on base, he has hit into 8 DPs and reached base 27 times. The reason he doesn't have more RBIs is because he has spent most of the year hitting behind Howard, who hasn't been on base much and can't score on a single unless he's on 3rd base. I'm fine with Young batting 3rd. You can't bury your best hitter in the least important spot in the lineup because of an annoying outcome that has happened 8 times in 123 PAs.

If they hit and run or straight stole more, then Young would be fine in the three hole. That'd be a nice resolution.

Cyclic: Well, he's only got 1 error in LF thus far... But that only nets him a .975 FLDG due to low number of chances (41 through 20 games).

However he's been having trouble hitting lefties this season (very small sample size, however - 19 PAs), and has a .504 OPS against them. That's lower than Howard's .527 vs. LHP.

Bittel: Even if you want to erase one positive outcome for every GiDP (i.e.: he has 10 GiDPs - thus let's erase 10 BBs or hits without changing number of PAs)...

He still has the highest OBP on the team among players with at least 50 ABs.

Now, you can blame that on the rest of the team hitting poorly, and you definitely wouldn't be wrong, but that's not the whole story. Young is just getting lots and lots of positive outcomes in his PAs. So many of them, in fact, that his OBP is literally 33% higher than Rollins, Howard or Mayberry, and more than double Ruiz's.

jbird: Well I'm about one MS away from being a librarian (10+ years in circulation or library assistant), so I at least get to use some of my background on a mostly-daily basis (or I did, before switching from college library to HS library)...

But my knowledge of the Blake Pantheon certainly land me any jobs.

That said, I wouldn't have wanted to major in anything else, so I guess I can't complain too much.

Certainly didn't, that should read.

I've resolved to think about this more. Thanks for all the feedback.

bittel: "what Michael Young did four or five years ago is about as irrelevant to what can be expected of him going forward as, well, pretty much anything"

You are incorrect. Career stats absolutely have predictive value. If you disagree, please research yourself instead of posing numerous requests for examples/evidence from posters here. It is a well documented truth.

Nate Schierholt is still raking... 127 OPS+ in 99 PA.

Here's the real question: Who do the Phillie get to replace Doc in the rotation? Bring up either Cloyd, Martin or Morgan, sign a FA, or trade for a starter?

NEPP: On a related, one of my best friends in the world has had her MFA in creative writing for a couple of years now and works as a barrista at Starbucks.

Sometimes the degree won't get you a job no matter what you do.

lorecore: I don't know, there has to be an age cutoff there somewhere. How relevant are Arod's numbers form 5 years ago (he hit 35 homeruns and had a .965 ops)?

How does one get a job in creative writing? Aren't you just self-employed?

jbird: well bittel misquoted sophist in the firts place, he posted what young did over the last 5 years, not just the "5th" year. That's what I was referring to.

Isn't 3 years generally considered the cutoff for useful predictive statistics?

Young's got a bit of an unique situation, because he's got an unsustainably-awesome year in there (2011) and an unusually-terrible year in there (2012), but I suppose you could say they cancel out...

I did some checking so I could refute Bittel's argument, only to find that Young, with a guy on first and less than two out, has a career GDP% of 15.5 (relative to PA), which is, actually, ridiculously high. Utley's in the 6% range, for instance. Howard's in the 8ish % range and even Pete Happy was less than 14%.

Michael Young, as well as he is hitting, probably should not be batting second or third.

And let me be clear - as long as he is leading the team in OBP, he should be leading off. He makes the fewest outs (by himself) so he should get the most PAs.

Andy: Any hitter with MYoung's GB% is going to have high GIDP % when the opportunities are there.

Jbird: Lots of non-self-employed jobs for creative writing majors. Marketing, (English/lit) teaching, journalism and publishing leap out as fields heavily-influenced by the CW types.

But really, anywhere you might need content written for public or targeted consumption can benefit from someone who knows how to write well.

***Isn't 3 years generally considered the cutoff for useful predictive statistics?***

Yes, typically, the last 3 full seasons is the best sample size to use for predicting future production.

Here's the real question: Who do the Phillie get to replace Doc in the rotation? Bring up either Cloyd, Martin or Morgan, sign a FA, or trade for a starter?

Posted by: RedBurb | Tuesday, May 07, 2013 at 11:04 AM

I'd go with Morgan over the other options...unless the trade is for a non-tender guy like Young or Wang (both on minor league deals with opt-outs right now) where we dont give up anything. I'd rather see Morgan get a chance to see if we've got anything in him.

Here's the other thing: if you have a guy in your lineup who hits into a lot of DPs, batting him 8th in THIS lineup doesn't exactly minimize the problem. If you bat him 8th, he'd be hitting behind guys like Chooch & Dom. Chooch is off to a lousy start, but you'd certainly figure him to be one of our highest OBP guys (if not the single highest) by season's end. And Dom figures to have a better OBP than our leadoff hitter. So, if you're concerned about Michael Young's proclivities for hitting into DPs, batting him 8th doesn't solve the problem. It probably even makes it worse.

I'd bat Young 1st over 8th. He needs to get more ABs, not less.

Did anyone else listen to the radio broadcast? Did you hear M. Young's career BA w/RISP? It's over .300. (I think it was .312.) This year, he's 5 for 11 with RISP.

Frankze may have been half-joking when he said it should be automatic to steal 2B when M. Young is at the plate, but it's not a terrible idea.

They interviewed M. Young after the game, too. On his own accord, he brought up the DPs. "Uncle," he said. He knows he's hit into more than his share of DPs.

I feel like giving Young more time hitting 3rd. I do like breaking up Utley and Howard with a RH bat. And I like anyone who tends to do well with RISP.

Stat people: Justify JRoll leading off.D.Young playing. Those have been 2 great moves. Even Mini hit more than Delmon and he couldn't keep above the Mendoza line.

Congratulations, NEPP! Completing your thesis and its presentation is a huge accomplishment!

Thanks...I am 100% done with any further education. No more please.

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