Monday, April 18, 2005

Boswell, Guzman And ERV

Here's a test for DM's ERV scoring based on subjective fielding decisions. Boswell writes:
Yesterday, Washington would have trailed 6-1 with average defense. Instead, four fine plays -- three of them by shortstop Cristian Guzman -- kept the deficit at 3-1. After scoring seven runs in the seventh inning on Saturday to blow open a game, Washington erupted for six runs in the seventh yesterday.

(emphasis added). So, DM, did you score those Guzman plays as extraordinary, and how many expected runs did they save?


At 2:09 PM, Blogger Yuda said...

That double-play with runners on first and third and nobody out was a heck of a play. Good awareness of the game situation, although not athletically difficult -- but credit should be given for that, as well.

At 3:11 PM, Blogger Chris Needham said...

Yuda's right. No one was sure whether that was going to be a liner or a groundball. (Clayton got stuck in no-man's land, at a dead stop)

Once it dropped, he had a tough play to pick it up off a very short hop, and then have the presence and awareness to find the bag -- a tough play that he made look pretty easy and fluid.

At 3:24 PM, Blogger dexys_midnight said...

Two quick points.
First, my thought is that Guzman will indeed over the course of the season have a positive ERV. Unfortunately, he'd have to have about 3-4 spectacular plays most major league SSs would not make each game to make up for the negative ERV and get him even. Doesn't take away from some good plays he makes though (Rey Ordonez was often incredible in the field--and he still shouldn't have had a major league job).

Second, speaking of judgment... The following scenario happened in Saturday's game. Shawn Green on first, Chad Tracy up. Pop up to Guzman who is probably two feet from 2nd when he catches it--not spinning or tricky or windy. Shawn Green, even though he is slower of late, is much faster than Chad Tracy (but really this is just an example to prove a point anyway). What I wondered was: Why do you rarely, if ever, see a guy intentionally drop that pop-up? You probably aren't going to get the double play, but you will trade guys on first base for someone much slower (and the chances of the ball getting away especially if you cradle it down to the ground are almost nil). This is why the infield fly rule was created--so why abandon the strategy when it is not in effect?

At 4:11 PM, Blogger Chris Needham said...

Roberto Alomar used to do that about once a year. And, in prior years that was a pretty routine play.

BUT, that is technically against the rules. I can't quote the section, but it's one of those gray-area judgement calls. I've heard of a few cases where they'll just assume the catch -- sort of a retroactive IF Fly rule.

At 4:21 PM, Blogger Chris Needham said...

For the pedant in all of us...
Umpires must keep their eyes on fielders who intentionally drop line drives to create double plays. This is a no-no per role 6.05(1)

Umpire Ed Vargo enforced the rule on May 20, 1960 in a game played between the Cardinals and Reds. Stan Musial hit a bases loaded liner to Reds' pitcher Joe Nuxhall who dropped the ball. Vargo signaled "no play." Musial was declared out, but the other Cardinal runners remained on base, protected by the rulebook.

At 4:25 PM, Blogger Chris Needham said...

Although this just discusses it in the context of DPs.

Damn... I better think these things through before I post!

At 7:35 PM, Blogger DM said...

I gave Guzman fielding credit for the DP where he kept the runner from third scoring. I concluded that the average fielder would have gotten the DP but let the runner score, so I gave Guzman fielding credit for keeping the runner at third, which has an RV of 0.65. I did not think any of the other plays were worth noting.

At 9:41 AM, Anonymous John said...

So far I've really been impressed with Guzman's fielding, enough so that I keep hoping he gets out of his batting slum so that we can justify keeping him out there in the field.

He's making it hard, it's highlighted by how often he comes up and flops at critical points (batting order change anyone?!), and in another six or seven games it's going to be framed as something other than a slump.

At 10:52 AM, Blogger dexys_midnight said...

OK, I am going to try to be gentle in that I'm not insulting his family...
One cannot characterize what Cristian Guzman is doing as a slump. Here are the basic stats beyond the 13 games this year.
Guzman has a CAREER on-base percentage of .301. That isn't anemic, that is being on life support. His career slugging percentage is .378. That is an OPS of .679.
This is Guzman's 7th full year in the majors. I checked to see how many currently starting shortstops there were who had at least 4 full major league seasons. There are 18, including Guzman, by my count. Guzman's OPS ranks 17th. The only guy behind him is Jack Wilson, who is just barely behind him and who has played in the minimum 4 seasons, and plays in perhaps the worst offense in the majors in Pittsburgh.
We must remember that this is a guy that the Twins dropped, not really having anyone to replace him, because they were so upset with his production. I'll have to find the link, but when we signed Cristian for the money we did, the Twins GM said something like "Wow. Well, yeah, he's definitely got to take that offer."

At 11:31 AM, Blogger Jon without an "h" said...

That was an awesome play because of an awesome read. Its easy to get hopped on steriods and have the ability to play ball. You see less and less athletes that have the mentality and talent for it.


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