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(CBS Sports)   Dickey wins 18th for Mets, is still one point behind Bay's BA   (cbssports.com) divider line 52
    More: Spiffy, Mets, knuckleball pitch, Dwight Gooden, Kyle Lohse, Johnny Cueto, Josh Thole, Lucas Duda, Yadier Molina  
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450 clicks; posted to Sports » on 06 Sep 2012 at 9:18 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-09-06 09:32:33 AM
A bright spot in a wasted season...
 
2012-09-06 09:51:39 AM
Cy Young Award? He has pretty stats. Nearly 200 K's and a 1.03 WHIP.
 
2012-09-06 09:52:02 AM

BEKirby: A bright spot in a wasted season...


Agreed.

They need to lock up Wright.
 
2012-09-06 10:18:03 AM

thecpt: Cy Young Award? He has pretty stats. Nearly 200 K's and a 1.03 WHIP.


He's gotta have the inside track on at this point, though Cueto and Gio Gonzalez are both competitive stats-wise, and they're on division-leading teams. I don't really see Strasburg getting much traction with his imminent shutdown. Clayton Kershaw won it last year, and the previous three NL Cy Youngs went to Halladay and Lincecum, both of whom had off-years for various reasons. Aroldis Chapman's had a good year, but relievers don't have the cachet of starters (Gagne was the last one to win it, in 2003). Dickey's a good story, it'd be cool to see.
 
2012-09-06 10:38:23 AM

Bonanza Jellybean: thecpt: Cy Young Award? He has pretty stats. Nearly 200 K's and a 1.03 WHIP.

He's gotta have the inside track on at this point, though Cueto and Gio Gonzalez are both competitive stats-wise, and they're on division-leading teams. I don't really see Strasburg getting much traction with his imminent shutdown. Clayton Kershaw won it last year, and the previous three NL Cy Youngs went to Halladay and Lincecum, both of whom had off-years for various reasons. Aroldis Chapman's had a good year, but relievers don't have the cachet of starters (Gagne was the last one to win it, in 2003). Dickey's a good story, it'd be cool to see.


The stats side of me says Cueto by a nose, though it wouldn't put up too much of an argument if Dickey won. The Mets fan side of me says fark you, stats side. Still time left though.
 
2012-09-06 10:50:23 AM
Jason Bay's batting average is .019? Impressive.
 
2012-09-06 10:51:49 AM

DeWayne Mann: Jason Bay's batting average is .019? Impressive.


You dont remember his hit?
 
2012-09-06 10:53:08 AM

Gunny Highway: DeWayne Mann: Jason Bay's batting average is .019? Impressive.

You dont remember his hit?


Does getting a concussion hitting the wall count? I remember that.
 
2012-09-06 11:19:57 AM
As a Nats fan and season ticket holder since 2005, I have been trying to devise an argument showing Gio's superior entitlement over Dickey to the Cy. But I can't.
 
2012-09-06 11:24:07 AM

Wellon Dowd: As a Nats fan and season ticket holder since 2005, I have been trying to devise an argument showing Gio's superior entitlement over Dickey to the Cy. But I can't.


Not trying hard enough. I'll get you started: Gio is tied for the NL lead among starters in fWAR.
 
2012-09-06 11:25:34 AM

DeWayne Mann: Wellon Dowd: As a Nats fan and season ticket holder since 2005, I have been trying to devise an argument showing Gio's superior entitlement over Dickey to the Cy. But I can't.

Not trying hard enough. I'll get you started: Gio is tied for the NL lead among starters in fWAR.


fWAR. What is it good for?
 
2012-09-06 11:28:12 AM

Wellon Dowd: DeWayne Mann: Wellon Dowd: As a Nats fan and season ticket holder since 2005, I have been trying to devise an argument showing Gio's superior entitlement over Dickey to the Cy. But I can't.

Not trying hard enough. I'll get you started: Gio is tied for the NL lead among starters in fWAR.

fWAR. What is it good for?


In this case, suggesting that no one other than Kershaw has been more valuable.

But that's about it.
 
2012-09-06 11:47:26 AM

DeWayne Mann: Wellon Dowd: DeWayne Mann: Wellon Dowd: As a Nats fan and season ticket holder since 2005, I have been trying to devise an argument showing Gio's superior entitlement over Dickey to the Cy. But I can't.

Not trying hard enough. I'll get you started: Gio is tied for the NL lead among starters in fWAR.

fWAR. What is it good for?

In this case, suggesting that no one other than Kershaw has been more valuable.

But that's about it.


Wow, I've been slipping. Had no idea Kershaw was throwing up a season like that. Damn.
 
2012-09-06 11:57:46 AM

FreakinB: DeWayne Mann: Wellon Dowd: DeWayne Mann: Wellon Dowd: As a Nats fan and season ticket holder since 2005, I have been trying to devise an argument showing Gio's superior entitlement over Dickey to the Cy. But I can't.

Not trying hard enough. I'll get you started: Gio is tied for the NL lead among starters in fWAR.

fWAR. What is it good for?

In this case, suggesting that no one other than Kershaw has been more valuable.

But that's about it.

Wow, I've been slipping. Had no idea Kershaw was throwing up a season like that. Damn.


Yeah, if I had to pick someone today, it would probably be Kershaw. Tons of IP, real good FIP.

But this sort of thing changes daily.
 
2012-09-06 12:22:01 PM
And so starts the mets great run, only to finish a game and a half out of the wild card.
 
2012-09-06 12:24:45 PM

FreakinB: DeWayne Mann: Wellon Dowd: DeWayne Mann: Wellon Dowd: As a Nats fan and season ticket holder since 2005, I have been trying to devise an argument showing Gio's superior entitlement over Dickey to the Cy. But I can't.

Not trying hard enough. I'll get you started: Gio is tied for the NL lead among starters in fWAR.

fWAR. What is it good for?

In this case, suggesting that no one other than Kershaw has been more valuable.

But that's about it.

Wow, I've been slipping. Had no idea Kershaw was throwing up a season like that. Damn.


Last I checked, Kershaw was leading the NL in WHIP and just about at the top in Ks, with a ton of innings.

But he's 12-7.
 
2012-09-06 12:30:40 PM

Dafatone: But he's 12-7.


Huh. It's kinda like, um....wins are dumb.

...

I'm gonna need a minute to compose myself here; my worldview has been completely shattered.
 
2012-09-06 12:44:49 PM
Pitching stats RA is top3 in:
ERA 2
Wins 1
Pitcher WAR 2 (bwar, espn's war. fwar undervalues knuckleballers for some reason regarding pitch speed)
Whip 2
Ks 2
IP 2
complete games 1
CGS 1
adjusted era+ 3
quality starts 1
QS % 1
Grounded into DP 1
total batters faced 3
pitches per inning 1
win% 2
average game score 1
Component ERA 3
batting average against 3
ops against 3
 
2012-09-06 01:01:02 PM

KrmtDfrog: fwar undervalues knuckleballers for some reason regarding pitch speed


I know what you're trying to say (though I'm not convinced you do), but "for some reason regarding pitch speed" is the funniest phrase I've heard all day.
 
2012-09-06 01:01:10 PM

thecpt: Cy Young Award? He has pretty stats. Nearly 200 K's and a 1.03 WHIP.


Nahh. You have to be a pitcher to win the Cy Young. Dickey's a knuckleballer.

/I keed
 
2012-09-06 01:02:50 PM

DeWayne Mann: Yeah, if I had to pick someone today, it would probably be Kershaw. Tons of IP, real good FIP.

But this sort of thing changes daily.


I'd throw him in my group with Dickey and Cueto and I'd have no major issue with any of them.
 
2012-09-06 01:27:22 PM

DeWayne Mann: Dafatone: But he's 12-7.

Huh. It's kinda like, um....wins are dumb.

...

I'm gonna need a minute to compose myself here; my worldview has been completely shattered.


Well yeah. Just saying that's why Kershaw might be a little under the radar or something.

As to who should get the Cy, I'm a Mets fan and therefore hoping Dickey. But I think he and Cueto are real close, and my gut says Cueto gets the edge for pitching in a bandbox.

What's up with fWAR for pitchers? Why is Gio so high up? Dude's having a great year, but his era is "only" 2.98, his whip of 1.118 isn't that amazing, great k/9 but only good k/bb. He leads baseball in h/9 and hr/9, which is pretty sweet, but his IP of 175.1 is a little lacking at this point in the season.

If I had to guess at fWAR leaders, it'd be Kershaw, Cueto, Dickey, then Gio. So which of those stats leads to the great fWAR for Gio?
 
2012-09-06 01:36:42 PM

Dafatone: DeWayne Mann: Dafatone: But he's 12-7.

Huh. It's kinda like, um....wins are dumb.

...

I'm gonna need a minute to compose myself here; my worldview has been completely shattered.

Well yeah. Just saying that's why Kershaw might be a little under the radar or something.

As to who should get the Cy, I'm a Mets fan and therefore hoping Dickey. But I think he and Cueto are real close, and my gut says Cueto gets the edge for pitching in a bandbox.

What's up with fWAR for pitchers? Why is Gio so high up? Dude's having a great year, but his era is "only" 2.98, his whip of 1.118 isn't that amazing, great k/9 but only good k/bb. He leads baseball in h/9 and hr/9, which is pretty sweet, but his IP of 175.1 is a little lacking at this point in the season.

If I had to guess at fWAR leaders, it'd be Kershaw, Cueto, Dickey, then Gio. So which of those stats leads to the great fWAR for Gio?


Yeah, I know. I was just joking.

fWAR is based entirely on two things: FIP (adjusted for park) and IP. You use FIP to figure out how many fewer runs the pitcher is better than replacement PER INNING, then multiply that amount by IP to get runs above replacement.

Gio has the second lowest FIP (after Strasburg) and has 20 more IP than Strasburg. Kershaw has more IP than Gio but a higher FIP as well.

So we end up with

Gio/Kershaw tied @ 4.9
Strasburg/Cueto tied @ 4.6
Dickey @ 4.5

Dickey actually has a better FIP and IP than Cueto, but the adjustment likes Cueto more.
 
2012-09-06 01:53:15 PM

DeWayne Mann: Dafatone: DeWayne Mann: Dafatone: But he's 12-7.

Huh. It's kinda like, um....wins are dumb.

...

I'm gonna need a minute to compose myself here; my worldview has been completely shattered.

Well yeah. Just saying that's why Kershaw might be a little under the radar or something.

As to who should get the Cy, I'm a Mets fan and therefore hoping Dickey. But I think he and Cueto are real close, and my gut says Cueto gets the edge for pitching in a bandbox.

What's up with fWAR for pitchers? Why is Gio so high up? Dude's having a great year, but his era is "only" 2.98, his whip of 1.118 isn't that amazing, great k/9 but only good k/bb. He leads baseball in h/9 and hr/9, which is pretty sweet, but his IP of 175.1 is a little lacking at this point in the season.

If I had to guess at fWAR leaders, it'd be Kershaw, Cueto, Dickey, then Gio. So which of those stats leads to the great fWAR for Gio?

Yeah, I know. I was just joking.

fWAR is based entirely on two things: FIP (adjusted for park) and IP. You use FIP to figure out how many fewer runs the pitcher is better than replacement PER INNING, then multiply that amount by IP to get runs above replacement.

Gio has the second lowest FIP (after Strasburg) and has 20 more IP than Strasburg. Kershaw has more IP than Gio but a higher FIP as well.

So we end up with

Gio/Kershaw tied @ 4.9
Strasburg/Cueto tied @ 4.6
Dickey @ 4.5

Dickey actually has a better FIP and IP than Cueto, but the adjustment likes Cueto more.


Have you looked into the FDP stuff they rolled out at FanGraphs last week? I quickly read through Dave Cameron's intro post on it, but I was just just trying to get the basic idea. I haven't had the time to really dig into it yet. It seems pretty interesting. I kinda like the idea of WAR being FIP-heavy with SOME weight given to runs allowed, which sounds like their long-term goal
 
2012-09-06 02:02:13 PM

Rex_Banner: Have you looked into the FDP stuff they rolled out at FanGraphs last week? I quickly read through Dave Cameron's intro post on it, but I was just just trying to get the basic idea. I haven't had the time to really dig into it yet. It seems pretty interesting. I kinda like the idea of WAR being FIP-heavy with SOME weight given to runs allowed, which sounds like their long-term goal


I'll just direct you to Tom Tango's thoughts, which are essentially my own with far more eloquence:

http://www.insidethebook.com/ee/index.php/site/comments/bridge_betwe en _fwar_and_rwar_for_pitchers_now_on_fangraphs

make sure you read the comments, because there's a lot of really interesting stuff in there.
 
2012-09-06 02:19:36 PM
People still care about wins a lot, so I think if Dickey hits 20, especially if he does it before anybody else (or if he's the only one who does, somehow), he's probably got it.
 
2012-09-06 02:33:43 PM

Bonanza Jellybean: People still care about wins a lot, so I think if Dickey hits 20, especially if he does it before anybody else (or if he's the only one who does, somehow), he's probably got it.


sadly this. so many yankees fans i know (not a knock to yankees fans, im sure it happens elsewhere) are still bitter about king felix getting his cy young over CC based solely on number of wins. Due in part to Felix having literally no run support.
 
2012-09-06 02:37:31 PM

thecpt: Bonanza Jellybean: People still care about wins a lot, so I think if Dickey hits 20, especially if he does it before anybody else (or if he's the only one who does, somehow), he's probably got it.

sadly this. so many yankees fans i know (not a knock to yankees fans, im sure it happens elsewhere) are still bitter about king felix getting his cy young over CC based solely on number of wins. Due in part to Felix having literally no run support.


Which is crazy, because it should've been Verlander that year.

Then again, it should've been Sabathia last year instead of him, so I guess it all works out. Or something.

/only somewhat serious
 
2012-09-06 02:56:20 PM

Bonanza Jellybean: People still care about wins a lot, so I think if Dickey hits 20, especially if he does it before anybody else (or if he's the only one who does, somehow), he's probably got it.


To be fair, the top pitchers are close enough that it wouldn't be THAT much of a travesty if Dickey gets it for this reason.

Dickey has 3 shutouts and a complete game, 1 hit, 0 walk game where he gave up 1 unearned run. Plus, he's the story of the year (I know that shouldn't count).

Are shutouts a plus? On some level, they shouldn't be, in that it's not like 8 innings and 1 run are that much worse than 9 and 0, and if a guy has better overall averages, having fewer shutouts doesn't mean he's worse.

On the other hand, shutouts yo.
 
2012-09-06 05:53:51 PM

DeWayne Mann: Wellon Dowd: As a Nats fan and season ticket holder since 2005, I have been trying to devise an argument showing Gio's superior entitlement over Dickey to the Cy. But I can't.

Not trying hard enough. I'll get you started: Gio is tied for the NL lead among starters in fWAR.


While Dickey has continued to play well, thankfully his BABIP has returned to near his career numbers. Vindicating my small sample size prediction from earlier in the season. I will accept your apologies. I calculated I had a nearly 60% chance of being right.
 
2012-09-06 06:00:25 PM

DeWayne Mann: thecpt: Bonanza Jellybean: People still care about wins a lot, so I think if Dickey hits 20, especially if he does it before anybody else (or if he's the only one who does, somehow), he's probably got it.

sadly this. so many yankees fans i know (not a knock to yankees fans, im sure it happens elsewhere) are still bitter about king felix getting his cy young over CC based solely on number of wins. Due in part to Felix having literally no run support.

Which is crazy, because it should've been Verlander that year.

Then again, it should've been Sabathia last year instead of him, so I guess it all works out. Or something.

/only somewhat serious


Picking between CC and Verlander last year based on fWar difference of 0.1? rWAR (and all its flaws) gave Verlander a 1 win advantage. And I always use the system that favors the tigers.
 
2012-09-06 06:09:19 PM

You're the jerk... jerk: While Dickey has continued to play well, thankfully his BABIP has returned to near his career numbers. Vindicating my small sample size prediction from earlier in the season. I will accept your apologies. I calculated I had a nearly 60% chance of being right.


I never actually disagreed with your conclusion, just your process.

It would be like me noting that a dump truck full of dirt drives by my house every day (which is true), then moving to some other town and predicting that a dump truck full of dirt would drive by my new house the next day. It might happen, but I don't really have significant data to back it up.

(on the plus side, if your process IS right, then mr. "fWAR underrates knuckleballers" up there is now completely wrong, rather than essentially wrong).

You're the jerk... jerk: Picking between CC and Verlander last year based on fWar difference of 0.1? rWAR (and all its flaws) gave Verlander a 1 win advantage. And I always use the system that favors the tigers.


Hence the "only somewhat serious."

That being said, rWAR is a travesty for pitchers. Absolute joke of a system.
 
2012-09-06 06:16:57 PM
Now, if you want someone in that thread who is looking real silly, it's Mr "I will say this right now...he will not get to 20 wins and his ERA will be over 3 by the end of the season."
 
2012-09-06 06:18:36 PM

DeWayne Mann: Now, if you want someone in that thread who is looking real silly, it's Mr "I will say this right now...he will not get to 20 wins and his ERA will be over 3 by the end of the season."


Was that me as well? I only remember my successes.
 
2012-09-06 06:20:58 PM

You're the jerk... jerk: DeWayne Mann: Now, if you want someone in that thread who is looking real silly, it's Mr "I will say this right now...he will not get to 20 wins and his ERA will be over 3 by the end of the season."

Was that me as well? I only remember my successes.


Lol, no. Some guy named bluenote13.
 
2012-09-06 06:34:23 PM

DeWayne Mann: You're the jerk... jerk: While Dickey has continued to play well, thankfully his BABIP has returned to near his career numbers. Vindicating my small sample size prediction from earlier in the season. I will accept your apologies. I calculated I had a nearly 60% chance of being right.

I never actually disagreed with your conclusion, just your process.

It would be like me noting that a dump truck full of dirt drives by my house every day (which is true), then moving to some other town and predicting that a dump truck full of dirt would drive by my new house the next day. It might happen, but I don't really have significant data to back it up.

(on the plus side, if your process IS right, then mr. "fWAR underrates knuckleballers" up there is now completely wrong, rather than essentially wrong).

You're the jerk... jerk: Picking between CC and Verlander last year based on fWar difference of 0.1? rWAR (and all its flaws) gave Verlander a 1 win advantage. And I always use the system that favors the tigers.

Hence the "only somewhat serious."

That being said, rWAR is a travesty for pitchers. Absolute joke of a system.


Wait, fWAR says Verlander had a better year than Hernandez' cy young year? I guess it does.

fWAR is purely a function of FIP and IP? Huh. I mean... I guess it's possible. I'm a little wary of FIP (though less so than xFIP).

Looking at their stats, they actually had pretty similar seasons. Slight edge in k/bb for Hernandez. Slight edge to Verlander in FIP. Verlander gave up fewer homers, and well fewer hr/fb, so xFIP has him well behind Hernandez. A lower strand rate probably contributed to Verlander's ERA. Hernandez has a big advantage in ground ball rate, although it's not always easy to fault a guy for giving up more fly outs.

The gap in FIP is very slight, and Hernandez threw 25 more innings. So I guess park factor puts Verlander ahead in fWAR, which makes sense.

But the gap in ERA is pretty huge. I know, it's not a very telling stat, but to some degree, if Verlander got unlucky (say he gave up home runs with men on base while Hernandez gave up more solo shots,) isn't that Verlander's fault? Just a little, I mean. Giving up home runs is partially a screwup on the pitcher's part and partially luck. Screwing up in bigger spots is blameable.

Also, it was really, really good to see a 13-12 guy win a cy young.
 
2012-09-06 06:47:46 PM

Dafatone: The gap in FIP is very slight, and Hernandez threw 25 more innings. So I guess park factor puts Verlander ahead in fWAR, which makes sense.


The quick way to check is their FIP-. FIP adjusts for park & era. Maybe league too, I don't remember, don't matter in this case anyway. It's like ERA+, except LOWER is better.

So, in 2010, Verlander had a FIP- of 70, while Hernandez was at 76. That's not a massive gap, but it's enough.

(Coincidentally, both Verlander and Hernandez have a FIP- of 70 this year, despite Verlander's FIP being 16 points higher.)

Dafatone: But the gap in ERA is pretty huge. I know, it's not a very telling stat, but to some degree, if Verlander got unlucky (say he gave up home runs with men on base while Hernandez gave up more solo shots,) isn't that Verlander's fault? Just a little, I mean. Giving up home runs is partially a screwup on the pitcher's part and partially luck. Screwing up in bigger spots is blameable.


Ok, let's say you're right (I don't precisely agree, but I'm willing to roll with it for a bit).

We're still talking WAR here, right? The idea that a player is X amount better than an imaginary player of a certain talent level?

How do you know that the replacement player would or would not mess up in those situations as well?

(Btw, I'd recommend checking out the link I posted earlier to Tom Tango's site)
 
2012-09-06 07:55:54 PM

DeWayne Mann: Ok, let's say you're right (I don't precisely agree, but I'm willing to roll with it for a bit).

We're still talking WAR here, right? The idea that a player is X amount better than an imaginary player of a certain talent level?

How do you know that the replacement player would or would not mess up in those situations as well?


Small chance I might have to disappear later (though I hope I don't). Just in case:

if you WEREN'T making a WAR argument here, and instead just saying something like "ERA is still somewhat important for pitchers because it deals with the fact that 'walk then HR' is more costly than 'hr than walk' (something that FIP ignores)", then my response is this:

This is true. But I'm skeptical on how much it matters. Remember that there is a similar analogue for batters, yet we're still ok with things like wOBA and OPS. wOBA in particular is very, very similar to FIP, in that it assigns each discrete event a number (regardless of context), then combines all those events into one stat.

If you can demonstrate that that sort of sequencing is truly a skill; that some pitchers are actually better at it than others, that it can be made better & worse over time in a way similar to other skills, and that luck affects it very little, then I'm all ears. But, again, I'm skeptical.
 
2012-09-06 08:07:13 PM

DeWayne Mann: DeWayne Mann: Ok, let's say you're right (I don't precisely agree, but I'm willing to roll with it for a bit).

We're still talking WAR here, right? The idea that a player is X amount better than an imaginary player of a certain talent level?

How do you know that the replacement player would or would not mess up in those situations as well?

Small chance I might have to disappear later (though I hope I don't). Just in case:

if you WEREN'T making a WAR argument here, and instead just saying something like "ERA is still somewhat important for pitchers because it deals with the fact that 'walk then HR' is more costly than 'hr than walk' (something that FIP ignores)", then my response is this:

This is true. But I'm skeptical on how much it matters. Remember that there is a similar analogue for batters, yet we're still ok with things like wOBA and OPS. wOBA in particular is very, very similar to FIP, in that it assigns each discrete event a number (regardless of context), then combines all those events into one stat.

If you can demonstrate that that sort of sequencing is truly a skill; that some pitchers are actually better at it than others, that it can be made better & worse over time in a way similar to other skills, and that luck affects it very little, then I'm all ears. But, again, I'm skeptical.


I would appreciate, but not accept, the argument that the MVP and Cy Young should be awarded to players based only on WPA. After all, that is what happened. I don't care about player skill I care about "value" and I would prefer JV give up a HR then a walk rather than the opposite. Since there is no defensive component there would have to be adjustments.
 
2012-09-06 08:37:00 PM

You're the jerk... jerk: DeWayne Mann: DeWayne Mann: Ok, let's say you're right (I don't precisely agree, but I'm willing to roll with it for a bit).

We're still talking WAR here, right? The idea that a player is X amount better than an imaginary player of a certain talent level?

How do you know that the replacement player would or would not mess up in those situations as well?

Small chance I might have to disappear later (though I hope I don't). Just in case:

if you WEREN'T making a WAR argument here, and instead just saying something like "ERA is still somewhat important for pitchers because it deals with the fact that 'walk then HR' is more costly than 'hr than walk' (something that FIP ignores)", then my response is this:

This is true. But I'm skeptical on how much it matters. Remember that there is a similar analogue for batters, yet we're still ok with things like wOBA and OPS. wOBA in particular is very, very similar to FIP, in that it assigns each discrete event a number (regardless of context), then combines all those events into one stat.

If you can demonstrate that that sort of sequencing is truly a skill; that some pitchers are actually better at it than others, that it can be made better & worse over time in a way similar to other skills, and that luck affects it very little, then I'm all ears. But, again, I'm skeptical.

I would appreciate, but not accept, the argument that the MVP and Cy Young should be awarded to players based only on WPA. After all, that is what happened. I don't care about player skill I care about "value" and I would prefer JV give up a HR then a walk rather than the opposite. Since there is no defensive component there would have to be adjustments.


If we're talking about which pitcher is objectively "better", or which one would be better next year based on this year's results, then yeah, walk then HR = HR then walk. At least considering every at bat individually, and saying that a pitcher's overall ability is how effective they are at bat to at bat.

But, when it comes to awards, I lean towards results a little more. Not to the extent that win-loss record is that important or anything, but at least walk then HR
And if two pitchers are equally effective, except one of them gives up 50% more earned runs per 9 IP, I'd lean towards the lower ERA guy for awards.
 
2012-09-06 09:01:01 PM

You're the jerk... jerk: I would appreciate, but not accept, the argument that the MVP and Cy Young should be awarded to players based only on WPA. After all, that is what happened. I don't care about player skill I care about "value" and I would prefer JV give up a HR then a walk rather than the opposite. Since there is no defensive component there would have to be adjustments.


Well now, you're making a bit of an assumption here about what value IS.

(oh god i just flashed back to every bad MVP column i've ever read)

Let's stick with offense alone, since that's far less controversial.

So, for a large, large chunk of history, offensive value was largely tied into how many runs the player contributed to. This is why the stats RBI and Runs are still somewhat popular.

(fun historical aside: in the very, very beginning, "runs" were, essentially, the ONLY offensive stat)

Then came that thought that, hey, maybe runs for a playoff team are more valuable than for a bad team (which is why it's rare for players on last place teams to get MVPs). Of course, one could also argue that runs on a bad team are MORE valuable than runs for a playoff team, but we'll get to that later.

Eventually, you started to get a bit of a backlash against RBI/Runs because...well, because they're stupid. A fairly early example of this can be seen in this 1953 essay by Branch Rickey (which, if anyone hasn't read that...you really need to).

This led to things like batting average and HRs becoming a bit more favored. Then we start getting the sabermetricians, pointing out that batting average isn't so great, and that we need to pay attention to things like walks. Again, for an example, check out Bill James' Runs Created, which is an attempt to tie all this stuff back to runs.

So, ok, now maybe we're looking at obp, slg, hr, things like that. Then Keith Woolner came up with a thought experiment. It went a little something like this:

A team has to decide between two first baseman (at the same cost) to finish the roster. Daring Dave has an OBP & SLG near the top of the league, but tends to miss at least 30 games a year. Everyday Eddie is closer to average, but he plays, well, everyday. When Dave is out, we'd have to replace him with some minor league schlub. Which player should we sign? (Or, alternatively, how many games would we need Dave to play to be as valuable as Eddie would be?)

And so VORP was born (and later turned into WAR but we're not talking defense).

But wait! What did I say a minute ago? Dave & Eddie are the same cost? Well, what if THAT isn't true? Then even if Dave has a higher VORP than Eddie, if he costs far more, Eddie might still be the more valuable player to a team. Alex Rodriguez was more valuable TO the Yankees than the Rangers, simply because he was crippling the Rangers' payroll.

It gets worse. A team that wins 90 games will probably make significantly more money than a team that wins 85...but an 80 win team will probably make about as much as a 75 win team. So a 5 win player is actually worth more to an 85 win team than to a 75 win team!

That is, of course, unless you decide to look at it a completely different way. If one team scores 600 runs and another scores 1200, then a player responsible for 60 runs is twice as important to the first. That's still value, yeah?

I'm starting to bore even myself, so I'll wrap it up:

There's about 800 ways to legitimately define value. That's true in general, of course: I got a letter in my mail telling me a local car dealership wanted to buy my car, and I ignored it, because I know my car is worth much more to me than they would offer. But in the end, isn't the FAIREST way to determine a car's value just to look it up in Kelley's Blue Book, where it's the same amount for everyone?

Similarly, to me, the fairest way to assess a player's value is by coming up with a method that's the same no matter what his team is. And I just don't see how that's true with WPA.

(And now I see there's a new post so it's time to read that).
 
2012-09-06 09:14:18 PM

DeWayne Mann: Well now, you're making a bit of an assumption here about what value IS.


I made no such assumptions, I was presenting the case that I thought would have merit if fleshed out. I don't think I would buy it though. I think MVP debates are fun, but generally I just go with the following formula:
1. Sort BBREF and FG by WAR, pick the highest on both lists and say "I can accept either candidate"
 
2012-09-06 09:45:01 PM

Dafatone: If we're talking about which pitcher is objectively "better", or which one would be better next year based on this year's results, then yeah, walk then HR = HR then walk. At least considering every at bat individually, and saying that a pitcher's overall ability is how effective they are at bat to at bat.

But, when it comes to awards, I lean towards results a little more. Not to the extent that win-loss record is that important or anything, but at least walk then HR
And if two pitchers are equally effective, except one of them gives up 50% more earned runs per 9 IP, I'd lean towards the lower ERA guy for awards.


Let me make a (somewhat odd) counter argument:

Say we have two pitchers. They have the same FIP-. They have the same IP. Therefore, they have the same fWAR. Pitcher A's ERA is better, though, because pitcher B's BABIP is higher.

I'll argue that, in fact, Pitcher B is the more talented, and therefore better, pitcher. Additionally, I'll argue that pitcher B likely did more to help his team than Pitcher A, especially IF we're talking about these guys for Cy Young.

Remember: fWAR (and FIP, in fact) are both based on IP. But (and, yes, this depends on a number of things), thanks to pitcher B's higher BABIP, his innings actually require him to face more batters. More batters (most likely) require more pitches. And yet, despite this, pitcher B has managed to pitch as well as pitcher A. He was given more opportunities to issue walks & HRs, yet didn't. True, he was also given more opportunities for strikeouts, but in general, you don't get more effective as your pitch count increases.

Furthermore, because he & his defense allow more hits on balls in play, that means the value of [ball in play] is less for his team than for Player A's team. Additionally, that means player B's strikeouts are more valuable than [ball in play], and his walks are less damaging (HRs....are a bit more complicated). So at least two of his controllable outcomes are more helpful to his team than Player A's were.

(note that this starts to get into what i said in my last post, so let's just move right past that).

Now, at this point, we're talking about how good he IS at controlling these things. If he's got a nice high K/9, he's the man. If he's Aaron Cook, well, that's not too helpful.

So, like I said, i we're talking about two Cy Young guys, chances are, pitcher B did more to help out.

Now, are the above arguments always going to be true? Absolutely not. But, hopefully, I've at least made a decent case here that the guy with the better ERA isn't necessarily the guy we want to pick.

(btw, you can do FIP and thus fWAR on a plate appearance basis, which sort of eliminates the above. unfortunately, it sorta leads to some other weird issues. I SWEAR there was an article on insidethebook about this, but i cannot find it for the life of me right now) 

and now i see another post
 
2012-09-06 09:47:56 PM

You're the jerk... jerk: I made no such assumptions,


Ok, fine, your hypothetical-possible-acceptable argument made the assumption. But there's definitely the assumption that "value = on-field results" in that post.
 
2012-09-07 11:41:50 AM

DeWayne Mann: You're the jerk... jerk: I made no such assumptions,

Ok, fine, your hypothetical-possible-acceptable argument made the assumption. But there's definitely the assumption that "value = on-field results" in that post.


Do you disagree with that assumption? I mean, ultimately we play the game to win. The thing I like about sabrmetrics is that they are predictive, maybe we should asses past results only based on WPA. I wouldn't build my team around it for the future, but maybe I could say it is the best way to evaluate what happened in the past.
 
2012-09-07 01:05:11 PM

You're the jerk... jerk: DeWayne Mann: You're the jerk... jerk: I made no such assumptions,

Ok, fine, your hypothetical-possible-acceptable argument made the assumption. But there's definitely the assumption that "value = on-field results" in that post.

Do you disagree with that assumption? I mean, ultimately we play the game to win. The thing I like about sabrmetrics is that they are predictive, maybe we should asses past results only based on WPA. I wouldn't build my team around it for the future, but maybe I could say it is the best way to evaluate what happened in the past.


Ok, I wrote up a nice long post, and then the server being down ate it. So let me just post the conclusion since I'm too pissed to redo the whole thing:


I'm imagining a spectrum, with performance (what explicitly happened on the field) on the left and talent (how skilled the player actually is) way on the right. Value, therefore, is between the two, and I can see arguments for placing it literally anywhere on that spectrum. But to me, the fairest place to put it is on the right side. It's not the same as talent, so it's not all the way to the right, but it should definitely be closer to talent than performance.
 
2012-09-07 02:01:40 PM

DeWayne Mann: Rex_Banner: Have you looked into the FDP stuff they rolled out at FanGraphs last week? I quickly read through Dave Cameron's intro post on it, but I was just just trying to get the basic idea. I haven't had the time to really dig into it yet. It seems pretty interesting. I kinda like the idea of WAR being FIP-heavy with SOME weight given to runs allowed, which sounds like their long-term goal

I'll just direct you to Tom Tango's thoughts, which are essentially my own with far more eloquence:

http://www.insidethebook.com/ee/index.php/site/comments/bridge_betwe en _fwar_and_rwar_for_pitchers_now_on_fangraphs

make sure you read the comments, because there's a lot of really interesting stuff in there.


Thanks. There's some good stuff in there, especially in regards to defense behind the pitcher on a given day and the problem with using team defensive stats to show how much support an individual pitcher received. I'm a little skeptical of drawing conclusions based on UZR data with that small of a sample, but it's pretty interesting nonetheless.
 
2012-09-07 02:30:49 PM

Rex_Banner: Thanks. There's some good stuff in there, especially in regards to defense behind the pitcher on a given day and the problem with using team defensive stats to show how much support an individual pitcher received. I'm a little skeptical of drawing conclusions based on UZR data with that small of a sample, but it's pretty interesting nonetheless.


I think even MGL is skeptical of drawing conclusions with UZR samples that small.

But it makes some sense. Think about it in terms of (sigh) pitcher wins.

We KNOW that a major factor into how many wins a pitcher gets is the run support. And so a pitcher on a team with a good offense is more likely to win games than the identical pitcher on a team with a bad offense.

But what if those two identical pitchers were on the same team? In all likelihood, one would get more wins than the other, but we have no way to predict which one going in. But we know this, because pitcher run support isn't uniform. This year, CC Sabathia gets 5.74 runs scored behind him. Hiroki Kuroda gets 3.71. All together, the Yankees score 4.77 per game.

So, we're seeing something similar w/ UZR here. A team might be a 0 UZR squad overall, but in front of one pitcher they're a 5 and in front of another they're a -5. THAT MAKES SENSE.

The question, therefore, is how much that depends on the pitcher. With the offense, it's "very very little, or even none in the AL". UZR probably depends on the pitcher more than that, though. But unless it's significantly the pitcher's fault, well...that's something else that needs to be kept in mind.
 
2012-09-07 03:06:05 PM

DeWayne Mann: Rex_Banner: Thanks. There's some good stuff in there, especially in regards to defense behind the pitcher on a given day and the problem with using team defensive stats to show how much support an individual pitcher received. I'm a little skeptical of drawing conclusions based on UZR data with that small of a sample, but it's pretty interesting nonetheless.

I think even MGL is skeptical of drawing conclusions with UZR samples that small.

But it makes some sense. Think about it in terms of (sigh) pitcher wins.

We KNOW that a major factor into how many wins a pitcher gets is the run support. And so a pitcher on a team with a good offense is more likely to win games than the identical pitcher on a team with a bad offense.

But what if those two identical pitchers were on the same team? In all likelihood, one would get more wins than the other, but we have no way to predict which one going in. But we know this, because pitcher run support isn't uniform. This year, CC Sabathia gets 5.74 runs scored behind him. Hiroki Kuroda gets 3.71. All together, the Yankees score 4.77 per game.

So, we're seeing something similar w/ UZR here. A team might be a 0 UZR squad overall, but in front of one pitcher they're a 5 and in front of another they're a -5. THAT MAKES SENSE.

The question, therefore, is how much that depends on the pitcher. With the offense, it's "very very little, or even none in the AL". UZR probably depends on the pitcher more than that, though. But unless it's significantly the pitcher's fault, well...that's something else that needs to be kept in mind.


Oh I agree that it definitely makes sense, and the run production example is a great comp - it's just very hard to quantify properly.

It might even come down somewhat to the handedness of the pitcher. If the guy is a lefty, the other team is more likely to give lefty batters a day off in favor of right handed batters. That should lead to more balls being hit to the left side of the field (theoretically). If the 3B, the SS, and the LF and not as good defensively as the 2B, the 1B, and the RF, there could be a problem there. If that is the case, you could see a righty and a lefty that induce similar contact, but have very different BABIPs.
 
2012-09-07 03:15:55 PM

Rex_Banner: Oh I agree that it definitely makes sense, and the run production example is a great comp - it's just very hard to quantify properly.

It might even come down somewhat to the handedness of the pitcher. If the guy is a lefty, the other team is more likely to give lefty batters a day off in favor of right handed batters. That should lead to more balls being hit to the left side of the field (theoretically). If the 3B, the SS, and the LF and not as good defensively as the 2B, the 1B, and the RF, there could be a problem there. If that is the case, you could see a righty and a lefty that induce similar contact, but have very different BABIPs.


Oh yeah, there's SO many things it could be.

You've covered handedness, and groundball vs flyball is fairly obvious...but what about high K/9 vs low K/9? A low K guy requires the fielders to do more. Does that tire them out, so that they're playing worse towards the end of the game? Or, alternatively, does a high K guy let the fielders slack off a bit?

I have NO IDEA how we'll tackle this. Maybe when Field F/X comes out? Otherwise, it reminds me a lot of trying to quantify how good catchers are at calling pitches. There's probably SOMETHING there, but where in the world do you start to look?
 
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