PDA

View Full Version : do spring training stats matter?



Will M
03-09-2010, 04:34 PM
I think the answer is "it depends".

1. they virtually don't matter at all for most established players. Arroyo could give up 6 runs in 2 innings because he was just throwing fastballs to build up arm strength. or maybe he was experimenting with the grip on a certain pitch. Votto could hit .131 this spring then hit 3 home runs on opening day.
for the established players spring training exists to get ready for the real games.

2. i think they matter for guys who are pencilled in to make the team but not 'written in stone' to make the team. if a guy like Stubbs, Dickerson or Herrera has a terrible spring they could find themselves back in AAA for a while. i think these type of guys have to be pretty bad as the Reds bosses expect them to make the team

3. they are absolutely crucial for guys trying to get those last few spots on the 25 man roster.
I count:
- 5th starter
- last bullpen spot after Cordero, Rhodes, Masset, Herrera, Burton & Owings
- last OF spot after Bruce, Stubbs, Dickerson & Gomes
- the two bench IF spots

So I think guys like Chapman, Maloney, Lincoln, Fisher, the couple of longshot arms for the pen, Heisey, Francisco, Frazier, Balentien, Nix, Dorn, Sutton, Miles,etc are the guys to really watch closely this spring. these are the guys fighting for the last 5 spots on the team.

Thoughts?

bucksfan2
03-09-2010, 04:38 PM
Bench, 25th man, 5th starter, and positions matter. Other than that no, and I would venture to guess that stats only player a limited role in deciding the eventual outcome. As you mentioned Arroyo could get shelled in two innings because all he was throwing was fastballs. Should that count for a hitter who goes 2-2 with a double and HR?

I take preseasons stats with a grain of salt.

VR
03-09-2010, 04:56 PM
I'm dumfounded as to why innings pitched, especially for starters, aren't taken into consideration for the big picture of their workload.


To your point, I think stats matter for those on the periphery....but approach, discipline, and overall progress of talent matter more for young players.

Sea Ray
03-09-2010, 05:09 PM
Stats matter for a veteran like Harang. I don't know about you but I'm gonna be worried if he gets shelled this Spring

Patrick Bateman
03-09-2010, 05:19 PM
Stats matter for a veteran like Harang. I don't know about you but I'm gonna be worried if he gets shelled this Spring

No they don't!

Usually veterans are just going through routines to get themselves in shape for the season. Guys like Harang aren't pitching with maximum effort or with their normal purpose. More to work on pitches that aren't working, refining delieveries and to get their work in. The last thing a guy like Harang should be worries about is his ST stats. I'll be worried if he starts getting knocked around during real games.

westofyou
03-09-2010, 05:19 PM
New game Reds fans, Arizona is traditionally a heavy hitters league and often the games are slugfests as pitchers work on their delivery and the like.

Approach is the king in spring, but young guys have to produce with their approach to get a second look. The fact is ST is a two tiered system where youngsters have to prove themselves with stats and the older guys have to prove that theirs might not be something you want to focus on too much.

nate
03-09-2010, 05:32 PM
They mean more at the end of spring training than they do at the beginning. But I'm pretty sure the coaches are looking for non-game crucial execution than anything else.

Put another way, if the stats matter, then the record matters.

Sea Ray
03-09-2010, 05:34 PM
No they don't!

Usually veterans are just going through routines to get themselves in shape for the season. Guys like Harang aren't pitching with maximum effort or with their normal purpose. More to work on pitches that aren't working, refining delieveries and to get their work in. The last thing a guy like Harang should be worries about is his ST stats. I'll be worried if he starts getting knocked around during real games.

I think guys like Harang have lost their privilege to use Spring Training to work on pitches. He needs to go back to basics and work on getting people out. Of course he'll be the Opening Day starter regardless but I'll still be concerned

RedsManRick
03-09-2010, 05:40 PM
It depends on what you mean by matter.

Do they effect who makes the 25 man roster? I think they might to some small extent. However, in the relatively small samples of ST, I would imagine that the numbers and the eyes would line up pretty darn well.

Do they help predict how a guy is going to play in the regular season? Not really. There has been lots of analysis of ST data compared to regular season data and the only meaningful relationship, statistically speaking, is power. If a guy flashes big power in ST, that portends well for the regular season. But even then, the predictive value is pretty small.

If you think about, even if guys were going all out, you're looking at like 30 games, which isn't very much. But then you factor in guys working on things, playing roles they don't usually play, facing a lot of lower quality opposition than they'd face normally -- it's best to ignore the stats completely.

As far as I'm concerned, ST is about staying healthy and getting your mechanics in order. Performance during ST is meaningless. I'd rely on historical stats and what my scouts are telling me about how the player has changed since last year to make my decision.

blumj
03-09-2010, 05:51 PM
No. Never. For anyone. Ever. Under any circumstances. No matter what.

Patrick Bateman
03-09-2010, 05:51 PM
I think guys like Harang have lost their privilege to use Spring Training to work on pitches. He needs to go back to basics and work on getting people out. Of course he'll be the Opening Day starter regardless but I'll still be concerned

Harang is in the rotation regardless.

I'd rather he be ready for the season instead of being on the DL because he blew out his arm trying to get a few extra punchouts against the Padres' B line-up.

Sea Ray
03-09-2010, 06:24 PM
Harang is in the rotation regardless.

I'd rather he be ready for the season instead of being on the DL because he blew out his arm trying to get a few extra punchouts against the Padres' B line-up.

I don't like hearing lines like he had today but it won't keep me up at night because it is early in Spring Training

Will M
03-09-2010, 07:17 PM
It depends on what you mean by matter.

Do they effect who makes the 25 man roster? I think they might to some small extent. However, in the relatively small samples of ST, I would imagine that the numbers and the eyes would line up pretty darn well.

Do they help predict how a guy is going to play in the regular season? Not really. There has been lots of analysis of ST data compared to regular season data and the only meaningful relationship, statistically speaking, is power. If a guy flashes big power in ST, that portends well for the regular season. But even then, the predictive value is pretty small.

If you think about, even if guys were going all out, you're looking at like 30 games, which isn't very much. But then you factor in guys working on things, playing roles they don't usually play, facing a lot of lower quality opposition than they'd face normally -- it's best to ignore the stats completely.

As far as I'm concerned, ST is about staying healthy and getting your mechanics in order. Performance during ST is meaningless. I'd rely on historical stats and what my scouts are telling me about how the player has changed since last year to make my decision.

i guess by 'matter' i mean #1 should we get all worked up if a player stinks in March and #2 do they impact who makes the team.

TheNext44
03-09-2010, 07:41 PM
I believe that performances matter in Spring Training, but stats do not.

There simply is not enough data to collect meaningful stats in one month of baseball played in one unique setting, against a small collection of teams, made up of many players who will not play in the majors that year.

A guy could hit .500 with 10 HR's, but all his hits and HR's could be against single A prospects and guys battling for the 12th spot on the staff, or a guy could hit .125 while he is working on a new hitting approach that he masters on the last two days. The stats tell us very little of value.

But we can still look at the performances, and since it is such a small sample size, it's not that tough to break it down literally pitch by pitch, if you have the time that a major league organization has. And that is exactly what they do. They don't look at stats, they examine every AB, every batter faced, pitch by pitch, and evaluate each player that way.

That's why some players could have great springs and not make the team or have mediocre springs and win a starting job.

PuffyPig
03-09-2010, 07:45 PM
Harang is in the rotation regardless.

I'd rather he be ready for the season instead of being on the DL because he blew out his arm trying to get a few extra punchouts against the Padres' B line-up.

Unless it's in an extra inning game.....

blumj
03-09-2010, 10:39 PM
i guess by 'matter' i mean #1 should we get all worked up if a player stinks in March and #2 do they impact who makes the team.
#1 No
#2 I don't know, some teams might, but it seems like a pretty bad way to choose. OTOH, it often doesn't matter much who makes a team right out of spring training.

Scrap Irony
03-09-2010, 10:55 PM
Numbers absolutely can matter in Spring Training, especially for those last few roster spots.

For almost everyone else, however, the answer is a resounding no.

Typically, the younger or older you are, the more important your numbers are in terms of spots on the 25, roles, and playing time. It's like a reverse bell curve of talent/age.