• The Two Idiots Agreed

    Posted by on March 29th, 2006 · Comments (4)

    From Yahoo Sports today:

    Top to bottom, their 2002 team was arguably the most talented since Jeter’s arrival in 1996. It certainly was their best pitching staff: Mussina, Roger Clemens, David Wells, Andy Pettitte, Jeff Weaver and Orlando Hernandez all were in the rotation at one juncture. Rivera, Mike Stanton, Steve Karsay and Ramiro Mendoza were tremendous out of the bullpen.

    And they lost in the first round to Anaheim.

    “The best team doesn’t always win,” Damon said. “The year we won in Boston, I thought the Angels were the best team. The year the Marlins won, I thought [Boston was] the best team. In 2001, I thought the A’s were the best team and the Diamondbacks won. You just have to get hot.”

    So, in 2004, Johnny Damon thought that the Angels should have won the ring. Funny, on October 1, 2004, I wrote the same thing at NetShrine.com:

    In summary, looking at the last nine World Series champions, the scrawling on this scorecard reads that recent champs were teams who:

    - Created and Saved Runs greater than average.

    - Did not rely mainly on homeruns, slugging, or walks on offense. More so, they were teams that made contact at the plate and hit for above average batting averages.

    - Had pitching staffs who controlled the strike zone (by striking out more than they walked) and limited base runners (and therefore runs).

    - Were able to call upon a closer who was at least league average.

    Now, if you look at all the teams (as of this morning) who are still eligible for post-season slots, the Anaheim Angels are the team that best fits the description detailed in the above four bullets. Therefore, should they make the post-season, the Angels should be the favorite to win the World Series in 2004 – according to the scrawling on this scorecard.

    Of course, Damon and I were both wrong – as wrong as a Tony Clark ground rule double! Oh, well, what can you do?

    Comments on The Two Idiots Agreed

    1. DFLNJ
      March 30th, 2006 | 10:40 am

      - Did not rely mainly on homeruns, slugging, or walks on offense. More so, they were teams that made contact at the plate and hit for above average batting averages.
      ==============================================

      That brings up something I’ve been thinking about lately. It seems like the Moneyball/ Earl Weaver approach to offense maximizes runs over the course of the regular season, but too often teams who embody that strategy come up empty in the playoffs. Somebody’s got to put the ball in play and hope for the best.

      Would you say that your finding that teams with above-average batting averages often win championships is a defense of the statistic, or do you just chalk it up to luck and call it meaningless?

    2. March 30th, 2006 | 11:14 am

      In my heart I want to say that high average, high contact, teams have the edge in the post-season. But, I still need to prove it to my head.

    3. rbj
      March 30th, 2006 | 1:21 pm

      I think the high average, high contact teams did well in the WBC, rather than a team that’s a collection of sluggers *cough* US *cough*

    4. JohnnyC
      March 30th, 2006 | 1:29 pm

      In the playoffs you face better pitching (not always great pitching but better pitching)and deeper staffs. Contact hitting skills move runners and cash in opportunities to score singelton runs better than the odds of waiting for a fat pitch and killing it. Over 162 games though you’ll get out-scored more often with that approach unless you have the lowest team ERA in the league.

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