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Ghosts of 1990
10-02-2010, 02:35 PM
http://www.fungoes.net/2010/10/01/reds-title-doesnt-validate-jockettys-system/


Itís easier to evaluate proven major-league talent and trade for stars than it is to analyze and project 18-year-olds and build a sustainable system. When Joey Votto and Jay Bruce start making major-league salaries and Jocketty has to make some hard choices to stay competitive, weíll see how well his system works. For now, his team is a good example of how balancing evaluation and analysis ó and mixing vets with in-house talent ó is a winning formula. Itís kind of like what the Cardinals have been trying to do since he left (though John Mozeliak has been a lot like Jocketty). To paraphrase Jerry Seinfeld, "See, you know how to make a championship team, you just donít know how to hold the championship team, and thatís really the most important part, the holding. Anybody can just make them." The 2010 title is no doubt rewarding in and of itself (and certainly made all the sweeter by the opponent over which it was won), but the important part for Jocketty will be keeping the Reds consistently competitive for the next few years. That ó and not a one-year title built on the work of his predeccessor ó will prove that Jockettyís system works.

Basically, the guy is saying it was what was in place and not anything Walt Jocketty really did.

I suppose that I kind of see the point here. What was Jock's best move in building this team? I'm having a hard time thinking of a whole lot. I'd love to know how much of sticking with Bruce/Stubbs and committing to the youth not only this season but since mid-2008 was Jock's decision and how much was others in the organization, because in my mind that was a lot bigger than any move that could have been made.

The take home message or moral of the story is of course Jock's tenure is yet to be written here. It's how he keeps the wheels on the machine over the next five seasons that will define his whole grade, but Jocketty gets an A for sticking with the young guys and not mortgaging the future this season to acquire a Cliff Lee. That's knowing your personnel and knowing we had what it took to take the next step with what we had on our roster already.

Hope he finds a way to keep our nucleus all together.

GAC
10-02-2010, 02:43 PM
Simply sounds like a bitter Card fan to me.

I was reading an article on ESPN the other day where Kurkjian was critiquing the division races, and when he got to the NL Central he basically said the only reason the Reds will win is because of the Cardinal's collapse. Typical ESPN.

Reds4Life
10-02-2010, 02:44 PM
"Anybody can just make them", really? I dont think so. If that's true, then why didn't the Cards do it this season? In fact, if that were the case and it's so easy, every team in MLB would be fighting for a playoff spot. Sounds like someone is bitter because the GM they let go is having success elsewhere.

I am not really concerned with the decisions Walt is going to make, his resume speaks for itself, the guy knows what it takes to win. What scares me is, how long does he want to keep doing this? If Walt decides to retire one of these years I'm scared to death we'll get Bavasi as his replacement.

Scrap Irony
10-02-2010, 02:57 PM
Jocketty is directly responsible for half the starting offense in either trades or free agent signings. He also signed or traded for all but one bench bat and the three most effective relievers in the pen.

But yeah, he's not responsible for anything. :rolleyes:

Brutus
10-02-2010, 03:01 PM
All I got out of that was a bunch of contradictions, qualifiers, he watches Seinfeld and he's bitter.

guttle11
10-02-2010, 03:07 PM
Trading decent, perhaps overvalued prospects for a very valuable veteran bat...no, not the Jocketty MO at all.

RedsManRick
10-02-2010, 03:12 PM
His basic premise seems sound to me. The article was a rebuttal to Murry Chass's claim that this season demonstrates that Jocketty's approach based primarily on qualitative information is better than a more analytical approach. (Chass is a first-class, get-off-my-lawn curmudgeon who loves nothing more than to find ways to tear down sabermtetrics and bloggers and especially sabermetric bloggers, fwiw)

Most of the production the Reds have gotten this year has come from guys Jocketty inherited. Sure, he's put some quality icing on the cake, but the cake was baked when he got here. Jocketty deserves credit for what he's done, but this team is hardly "his" creation and certainly doesn't validate, or invalidate, Jocketty's approach as a GM.

The author rightly points out that quality player development is a key part of the success of any team, this Reds team included. And Jocketty can not be credited for the development of Votto, Bruce, Bailey, Cueto, etc.

VR
10-02-2010, 03:36 PM
http://www.the-spearhead.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/sniveling.jpg

Cedric
10-02-2010, 03:45 PM
His basic premise seems sound to me. The article was a rebuttal to Murry Chass's claim that this season demonstrates that Jocketty's approach based primarily on qualitative information is better than a more analytical approach. (Chass is a first-class, get-off-my-lawn curmudgeon who loves nothing more than to find ways to tear down sabermtetrics and bloggers and especially sabermetric bloggers, fwiw)

Most of the production the Reds have gotten this year has come from guys Jocketty inherited. Sure, he's put some quality icing on the cake, but the cake was baked when he got here. Jocketty deserves credit for what he's done, but this team is hardly "his" creation and certainly doesn't validate, or invalidate, Jocketty's approach as a GM.

The author rightly points out that quality player development is a key part of the success of any team, this Reds team included. And Jocketty can not be credited for the development of Votto, Bruce, Bailey, Cueto, etc.

Depends on what you call "most of the production."

I think Rolen on the field and off the field has been the biggest key to this franchise turning around.

Scrap Irony
10-02-2010, 03:48 PM
Most of the production the Reds have gotten this year has come from guys Jocketty inherited. Sure, he's put some quality icing on the cake, but the cake was baked when he got here. Jocketty deserves credit for what he's done, but this team is hardly "his" creation and certainly doesn't validate, or invalidate, Jocketty's approach as a GM.

This is the assumption both the bloger and you, RMR, make. That "icing" won the Central crown, Rick.

The addition of Hernandez made the Cincinnati catching tandem among the best in the league.

The addition of Rolen gave the Reds their second-best hitter.

Masset was their best reliever on the year, outside of Rhodes. Both were Jocketty signings.

Then you've got Leake and Chapman, who were signed during Jocketty's tenure. (Neither of which would be considered player development.)

Sure, Votto wasn't his "get". Neither was Bailey, Cueto, Bruce, or Stubbs. But those guys are hardly the only reason the Reds won the title in 2010.

westofyou
10-02-2010, 03:51 PM
I know what's validated by this article.

Pettiness

RedsManRick
10-02-2010, 03:54 PM
This is the assumption both the bloger and you, RMR, make. That "icing" won the Central crown, Rick.

The addition of Hernandez made the Cincinnati catching tandem among the best in the league.

The addition of Rolen gave the Reds their second-best hitter.

Masset was their best reliever on the year, outside of Rhodes. Both were Jocketty signings.

Then you've got Leake and Chapman, who were signed during Jocketty's tenure. (Neither of which would be considered player development.)

Sure, Votto wasn't his "get". Neither was Bailey, Cueto, Bruce, or Stubbs. But those guys are hardly the only reason the Reds won the title in 2010.

What is your point? Yes, Jocketty inherited a team with a good core of young talent and added the right pieces to put it over the top. No one player or few players are "the reason" the Reds won the central. The Reds won the central because all of the players who comprise the team beat the other teams. And if you look at all of the runs scored and all of the runs prevented, the guys who were already here when Jocketty arrived contributed more than the guys he brought in. Rolen only makes "the" difference if the other 24 guys are good enough for him to do so.

That's not casting aspersions on Jocketty. He's done a very good job. But you don't give the gold medal just to the guy who runs the anchor leg, even if he ran really fast. It all counts. Jocketty made some really nice additions and I give him full credit for that. But he inherited an organization well positioned for him to do so.

This isn't a mutually exclusive proposition. Jocketty came in to a good situation and did a good job. To give him full credit is silly. To give him no credit is silly. All I'm saying, and what the author is saying, is that the Reds success doesn't prove anything about Jocketty's approach to general managing nor the Cards' current GM's approach. Is that really such a controverisal claim?

Captain Hook
10-02-2010, 04:02 PM
http://www.the-spearhead.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/sniveling.jpg

Agreed!

There are a bunch of teams out there with a handful of quality guys and prospects with potential that fail to turn that situation into winning seasons.

Maybe this writer should worry more about how his team is going to sign their best player and at the same time field a team that's not filled with a bunch of scrubs.Going to be difficult imo considering the money they already have committed to just a handful of guys.The Reds problems seem far less in comparison.

MWM
10-02-2010, 04:14 PM
What a load of crap. Jocketty isn't a "system" guy and that's one of things that makes him great at what he does. He's a guy that makes smart moves and understands what it takes to take a team that's close and put them over the top. Would he be a great GM in a rebuilding situation? Maybe not. But is there many guys better in a situation where a few prudent moves can take a strong nucleus and add the finishing touches? Absolutely.

That's where Bowden failed so badly. He was good at putting a team together that was close to being a legit contender. He was clueless as to how to finish the job.

Wheelhouse
10-02-2010, 04:20 PM
Depends on what you call "most of the production."

I think Rolen on the field and off the field has been the biggest key to this franchise turning around.

Agreed.

Scrap Irony
10-02-2010, 04:39 PM
What is your point? Yes, Jocketty inherited a team with a good core of young talent and added the right pieces to put it over the top. No one player or few players are "the reason" the Reds won the central. The Reds won the central because all of the players who comprise the team beat the other teams. And if you look at all of the runs scored and all of the runs prevented, the guys who were already here when Jocketty arrived contributed more than the guys he brought in. Rolen only makes "the" difference if the other 24 guys are good enough for him to do so.

That's not casting aspersions on Jocketty. He's done a very good job. But you don't give the gold medal just to the guy who runs the anchor leg, even if he ran really fast. It all counts. Jocketty made some really nice additions and I give him full credit for that. But he inherited an organization well positioned for him to do so.

This isn't a mutually exclusive proposition. Jocketty came in to a good situation and did a good job. To give him full credit is silly. To give him no credit is silly. All I'm saying, and what the author is saying, is that the Reds success doesn't prove anything about Jocketty's approach to general managing nor the Cards' current GM's approach. Is that really such a controverisal claim?

GM's come into "good situations" all the time.

Only a select few make good enough moves to get into the playoffs with those teams.

Jocketty seems to "get lucky" and come into "good situations" a lot. He did that throughout his tenure in St. Louis and has turned the Reds into a playoff team in two years, despite a decade of frustration.

Y'know, in the late 90's, the Reds had a great core of young talent. A couple of years later, they had another great core of talent. A few years after that, they had another great core of talent.

Great cores of talent come around a lot more in Cincinnati, apparently, than do good teams.

Jocketty assembled a good team.

I'm not dogging anyone who came into the orgaization as a GM before him. They found some great talent, obviously. But which one of them was good enough to create a team that made the playoffs?

Not a one.

And Jocketty has done this throughout his career.

Scrap Irony
10-02-2010, 04:50 PM
Would he be a great GM in a rebuilding situation? Maybe not.

Would you consider St. Louis a rebuilding situation, MWM? They weren't great when he got there, record-wise, though they, too, had a good core of major league talent.

kaldaniels
10-02-2010, 05:12 PM
Now Rick you constantly make good posts on here but I had a huge issue a while back with something you said. And that was the fact that you don't evaluate based on outcomes...but rather you evaluate the transaction at the time it is made. In this thread you say Walt has done a good job....how did you come to that conclusion?

traderumor
10-02-2010, 05:15 PM
Too much of GM evaluation is on what they do, when sometimes its just as important what they do not do. Jocketty does not say much, but when he is ready to talk, he explains his mindset, and I keep on hearing a guy who clearly knows his team. Also, the lack of noise and drama out of the front office since he has taken over shows stability. He seems to run a top notch organization and surrounds himself with people he wants and lets them do their jobs while he does his. The only thing the blogger is needing is some cheese.

kaldaniels
10-02-2010, 05:16 PM
Handing out credit for 1 good season of baseball is a funny thing people.

WVRedsFan
10-02-2010, 05:31 PM
Most people have posted what I want to say, but just to reiterate and add to a little.

He turned an overrated Ryan Freel into Hernandez, giving us a good fielding (and hitting) catcher--something this franchise hadn't had in years.

He got rid of the unbelievably popular Edwin Ecarnacion and got in return Scotty Rolen, a third baseman who could field and give the team timely hits plus lead by example in the clubhouse.

He signed Orlando Cabrera. He's not popular around here, but he also was a leader in the clubhouse, hit better than Janish would have, and still had decent play in the field.

He signed Nick Masset, Arthur Rhodes, Mike Leake, and the signing of the year, Androlis Chapman. Masset and Rhodes were solid, Leake was unbelievable at times, and Chapman will be a star. He also got rid of the chaff that Krivsky held on to. I already mentioned Freel, but that list also includes Jerry Hairston, Jr., Todd Coffey, Alex Gonzalez, Chris Dickerson, and others. He had the guts to convince Dusty to shelve Dick Pole in favor of Brian Price, a primo move in my opinion.

Without these moves, the Reds would have won 80-82 games and finished second to the Cardinals. Is there a system? Nope. Just good old fashioned baseball knowledge. He knows who really has talent and who does not as well as how to assemble a winning team--something sorely missing for over a decade.

Caveat Emperor
10-02-2010, 05:38 PM
Handing out credit for 1 good season of baseball is a funny thing people.

With Walt Jocketty, we're not talking about 1 good season of baseball -- we're talking about putting two mid-market franchises into the post-season.

Dude has the hardware to back up anything that's happened this season.

westofyou
10-02-2010, 05:45 PM
With Walt Jocketty, we're not talking about 1 good season of baseball -- we're talking about putting two mid-market franchises into the post-season.

Dude has the hardware to back up anything that's happened this season.

Exactly, it's petty to disregard his prior "proof" and focus on what he walked into and call that "his body of work"

In reality that's his Reds body of work and his success in Cincinnati does more to validate his prior approach and successes than scar them, because his reputation is based on his career in baseball, not just Cincinnati.

kaldaniels
10-02-2010, 06:01 PM
With Walt Jocketty, we're not talking about 1 good season of baseball -- we're talking about putting two mid-market franchises into the post-season.

Dude has the hardware to back up anything that's happened this season.

And as I wrote, I was referring to just this year. To isolate this year and dole out appropriate credit is quite a task.

Captain Hook
10-02-2010, 07:16 PM
And as I wrote, I was referring to just this year. To isolate this year and dole out appropriate credit is quite a task.

I don't think anyone said"this year is finally proof Walt's a good GM".

The Reds stuck gold and I knew it the second Jocketty signed on as an advisor to Krivsky.Bob put some proven winners in charge of this team instead of getting the next great GM or coach that we've never heard of.Look where we are now.

CarolinaRedleg
10-02-2010, 08:15 PM
Sort of like Chris Carpenter trying to explain this offseason to his son? :D

Brutus
10-02-2010, 08:20 PM
Sort of like Chris Carpenter trying to explain this offseason to his son? :D

The way he finished the season, next year he's going to have to explain AARP.

Ghosts of 1990
10-02-2010, 09:02 PM
Most people have posted what I want to say, but just to reiterate and add to a little.

He turned an overrated Ryan Freel into Hernandez, giving us a good fielding (and hitting) catcher--something this franchise hadn't had in years.

He got rid of the unbelievably popular Edwin Ecarnacion and got in return Scotty Rolen, a third baseman who could field and give the team timely hits plus lead by example in the clubhouse.

He signed Orlando Cabrera. He's not popular around here, but he also was a leader in the clubhouse, hit better than Janish would have, and still had decent play in the field.

He signed Nick Masset, Arthur Rhodes, Mike Leake, and the signing of the year, Androlis Chapman. Masset and Rhodes were solid, Leake was unbelievable at times, and Chapman will be a star. He also got rid of the chaff that Krivsky held on to. I already mentioned Freel, but that list also includes Jerry Hairston, Jr., Todd Coffey, Alex Gonzalez, Chris Dickerson, and others. He had the guts to convince Dusty to shelve Dick Pole in favor of Brian Price, a primo move in my opinion.

Without these moves, the Reds would have won 80-82 games and finished second to the Cardinals. Is there a system? Nope. Just good old fashioned baseball knowledge. He knows who really has talent and who does not as well as how to assemble a winning team--something sorely missing for over a decade.

We're forgetting one signing I want to mention. Guy has been huge all year for us unexpectedly and it was 100% a Jocketty decision. Miguel Cairo.

Story I heard was in offseason Cairo said to Walt "give me a chance, I'll earn my spot and you'll never regret it"

What a good signing Cairo was

RedsManRick
10-02-2010, 09:16 PM
Now Rick you constantly make good posts on here but I had a huge issue a while back with something you said. And that was the fact that you don't evaluate based on outcomes...but rather you evaluate the transaction at the time it is made. In this thread you say Walt has done a good job....how did you come to that conclusion?

A fair question. I do prefer base my judgments on process rather than outcome. Two things:

1) Process-based evaluation of somebody else's decisions relies on the analyst's awareness of the information available to that person at the time those decisions were made. If my understanding of what Jocketty knew when made various decisions is accurate, I'll stand by my assessments, regardless of outcome.

However, if it turns out that Jocketty was making decisions based on information about which I was unaware, then my analysis was invalid to begin with. I'm completely open to the possibility that I didn't/don't have complete information, that Jocketty has based certain decisions not on different logic (using the same information), but on the same logic I suggest, backed by better information.

When an outcome differs from my expectation, I'll go back and see if I missed anything that I should have included in my analysis, but missed at the time. If my analysis was bad, I have no problem admitting it. If the outcome was simply different, I'll stand by what I said at the time.

Two examples of this:
a) Rolen: It appears that Jocketty had information about both Rolen's willingness to rework his deal (increasing our financial flexibility) and on the health of his shoulder that I did not, making the trade more reasonable. I still believe he gave up too much for him given the dynamics of teh situation, but in the context of 2010, Rolen > EE & Stewart.

b) Cairo: If anybody thinks there was good reason to expect a .750 OPS from the guy, I'd like what they're smoking. It was a bad decision which has had a good outcome.

All that said, I haven't gone through a full analysis of what Jocketty has done to date to arrive at any sort of strongly held position about whether or not he's done a good job. Which leads me to point 2:

2) In this thread, my point was really relevant regardless of your opinion on how well he's done. That is, his contributions to the creation of this team are not substantial enough to make a judgment on the relative effectiveness of his style compared to that of current Cardinals management. The argument I was refuting is based on the assumption that he has done a good job. Rather than fighting that battle, I chose to concede that argument and focus on my real point, the scope of his contributions.

johngalt
10-02-2010, 09:23 PM
Most of the production the Reds have gotten this year has come from guys Jocketty inherited. Sure, he's put some quality icing on the cake, but the cake was baked when he got here. Jocketty deserves credit for what he's done, but this team is hardly "his" creation and certainly doesn't validate, or invalidate, Jocketty's approach as a GM.

The author rightly points out that quality player development is a key part of the success of any team, this Reds team included. And Jocketty can not be credited for the development of Votto, Bruce, Bailey, Cueto, etc.

But, see, I don't think you can outright say that Jocketty can't be credited for the development of those guys, or at least some of them.

I know not everyone puts a ton of stock into the "veteran leader" aspect of things, but I think it would be fair to wonder how much the presence of a Scott Rolen or Orlando Cabrera has had on the production of those players this year. Or even a guy like Phillips?

We've seen how Jay Bruce has taken off late in the year. Can a good portion of that be attributed to some of the guidance he's received from Jim Edmonds since he arrived?

Again, it's debateable what that effect is, but I would argue it's helped the development of those guys.

To go back to your analogy, you can't say the cake was "baked" when Walt took over. Maybe the mix was ready and most of the ingredients were there, but there was still plenty of cooking left to do.

edabbs44
10-02-2010, 09:32 PM
The other thing that we are failing to acknowledge regarding Walt's inheritance is that he could have also mismanaged those assets that were in place when he arrived.

RedsManRick
10-02-2010, 09:38 PM
But, see, I don't think you can outright say that Jocketty can't be credited for the development of those guys, or at least some of them.

I know not everyone puts a ton of stock into the "veteran leader" aspect of things, but I think it would be fair to wonder how much the presence of a Scott Rolen or Orlando Cabrera has had on the production of those players this year. Or even a guy like Phillips?

We've seen how Jay Bruce has taken off late in the year. Can a good portion of that be attributed to some of the guidance he's received from Jim Edmonds since he arrived?

Again, it's debateable what that effect is, but I would argue it's helped the development of those guys.

To go back to your analogy, you can't say the cake was "baked" when Walt took over. Maybe the mix was ready and most of the ingredients were there, but there was still plenty of cooking left to do.

This all really misses the point. We're splitting hairs. It's not about whether you want to give him 65% or 50% of the credit. It's whether or not what he's done in Cincinatti proves that his method is better than a more analytical one. And on that front, this debate about proportion of credit or how baked the cake was is really irrelevant, unless you believe he deserves complete credit.

Brutus
10-02-2010, 10:03 PM
This all really misses the point. We're splitting hairs. It's not about whether you want to give him 65% or 50% of the credit. It's whether or not what he's done in Cincinatti proves that his method is better than a more analytical one. And on that front, this debate about proportion of credit or how baked the cake was is really irrelevant, unless you believe he deserves complete credit.

I've eaten a lot of baked cakes in my day, and not all of them tasted good. Give me one that is cooked correctly and is delicious :)

TheNext44
10-02-2010, 10:16 PM
First, Murry Chase is wrong. Jocketty does not use a system based on qualitative review over analytic review. So really any argument about whether this season proves that the qualitative system is better or worse than the analytic one, has an incorrect premise, and is meaningless.

I am sure Jocketty and the whole Reds front office uses the most advanced stats available. When they evaluate players, they don't do it based on his character, or how well he is liked in the clubhouse. They look at the numbers, and try to figure out how to build an offense that will score the most runs and give up the least.

If there is a difference between Jocketty and say Oakland, who is I guess the best example of the most analytic based system, it's that Jocketty thinks that things like experience, and leadership can lead to better production for that player and the players around him, more than Beane does. But I don't think that Beane completely dismisses this notion, nor do I think that Jocketty thinks this is what is most important.

There is only one team that I know of that does not use the most modern of stats, and that thinks that things like character, and clubhouse presense mean the most, and that is the Astros. They continue to sign pitchers based on ERA and wins, and hitters based on batting average and RBI's. But Jockety is nothing like them, and has proven that year after year.

I just don't think that Jocketty uses a system that contradicts Sabermetrics, or that values qualitative issues more than stats. He, like nearly every other team in the majors, uses a combination of the two, and tries to get them to work in harmony, not against each other.

MWM
10-02-2010, 10:18 PM
If there is a difference between Jocketty and say Oakland, who is I guess the best example of the most analytic based system,

Actually, I think the most analytic organization out there is most likely Boston.

Brutus
10-02-2010, 10:25 PM
Actually, I think the most analytic organization out there is most likely Boston.

Why did they trade Manny? It sure wasn't for lack of production. Same for Nomar.

kaldaniels
10-02-2010, 10:28 PM
1) I like what you wrote Rick. I don't think the way you do, but I at least am getting a good sense of where you are coming from.

2) The whole original article is a strawman argument if you ask me. Jock's body of work speaks for itself. I think Walt is great, but to point at the 2010 Reds and use that alone to proclaim Walt's greatness is crazy if you ask me.

3) If Walt had sent Stubbs to the minors in June and lets say Stubbs had a less than stellar career after that...we would be hearing about how Walt wrecked Drew's career for years to come. Not everyone would say that, but it would be said a lot. To that end, Walt deserves credit to some degree for sticking with Jay and Drew this year.

4) The individual who deserves the most credit for the Reds' sucess this year is Mr. Joey Votto.

MWM
10-02-2010, 10:45 PM
Why did they trade Manny? It sure wasn't for lack of production. Same for Nomar.

Because they were both very likely to go way down in production and up in cost. That's very analytical. They were right about that. Think they regret either?

Analytical doesn't mean robotic.

johngalt
10-02-2010, 11:23 PM
This all really misses the point. We're splitting hairs. It's not about whether you want to give him 65% or 50% of the credit. It's whether or not what he's done in Cincinatti proves that his method is better than a more analytical one. And on that front, this debate about proportion of credit or how baked the cake was is really irrelevant, unless you believe he deserves complete credit.

Well, come on, by the "complete credit" reasoning that you're talking about you could never evaluate someone unless they had a team where everyone on the team was acquired by that GM. That's just silly, don't you think?

RedsManRick
10-02-2010, 11:23 PM
First, Murry Chase is wrong. Jocketty does not use a system based on qualitative review over analytic review. So really any argument about whether this season proves that the qualitative system is better or worse than the analytic one, has an incorrect premise, and is meaningless.

I am sure Jocketty and the whole Reds front office uses the most advanced stats available. When they evaluate players, they don't do it based on his character, or how well he is liked in the clubhouse. They look at the numbers, and try to figure out how to build an offense that will score the most runs and give up the least.

Just curious why you're sure. I've not heard/seen anything that suggests they use advanced statistics. The comments I've heard from the Cincy front office suggest otherwise.

RedsManRick
10-02-2010, 11:27 PM
Well, come on, by the "complete credit" reasoning that you're talking about you could never evaluate someone unless they had a team where everyone on the team was acquired by that GM. That's just silly, don't you think?

Every single player? probably not. But if less than 50% of the team's net production is coming from players that GM acquired, I think it's fair to say prior GMs played a significant role.

And still, I'm not talking about whether or not we can evaluate the GM. I talking about whether we can make general claims about his method of team building based on the job he's done so far.

My argument that it's too early to judge Jockety's approach as a GM has absolutely nothing to do with how well he's done.

WVRedsFan
10-02-2010, 11:43 PM
Maybe Rick is right, but his past records suggests he will be successful in the future. I also think you have to take into consideration how he took a black hole at catcher and turned it into an offensive plus (Hernandez), took a 3rd baseman, had the intelligence to realize it wasn't going to work and plugged in a club leader, took a shortstop position and took away a failure in AGon and plugged in OCab, and brought in the pitching leaders of tomorrow when the former staff had been horrible. He also manufactured a bench that went from the worst in the league to the best.

Everyone's subject to annual review where I work, and so is Jocketty. This year, he gets an A.

westofyou
10-02-2010, 11:57 PM
http://baseballmusings.com/?p=58669



Jocketty, Pat Gillick and Terry Ryan are examples of intuitive Moneyball general managers. They basically do the same sort of talent evaluation, but without computers. They go for high OBP players, good defense, low walk, high strikeout pitchers. The know when to trade for a veteran and let free agents go. Some people need spreadsheets to help them along, others don’t. Deep down, the philosophy is the same, however

westofyou
10-03-2010, 12:05 AM
Just curious why you're sure. I've not heard/seen anything that suggests they use advanced statistics. The comments I've heard from the Cincy front office suggest otherwise.
http://mlb.fanhouse.com/2010/06/20/old-school-jocketty-remains-no-joke/

"When I started out, there was the old way of scouting and going by gut feel," Jocketty says. "You can't survive doing that now. You need to have some kind of statistical analysis to support your decisions. The game and the job have grown so much. It's much more a business now than it used to be.

Brutus
10-03-2010, 12:18 AM
Because they were both very likely to go way down in production and up in cost. That's very analytical. They were right about that. Think they regret either?

Analytical doesn't mean robotic.

Manny was already making $20 million and he signed with the Dodgers for nearly the same.

He was traded, plain and simple, because of the clubhouse stuff. Theo, for what little he spoke of it, pretty much said it clearly that it was an off-the-field matter.

I'm not accusing you of saying they're robotic, but I was listening to an ESPN radio interview with him last year, and it seems he's actually come back to the center quite a bit with regard to the analysis. In my mind, Oakland still trumps all with regard to statistical analysis.

westofyou
10-03-2010, 12:20 AM
http://www.forbes.com/2010/06/15/cincinnati-reds-gm-business-sports-walt-jocketty.html



"The philosophy is development--we're heavily invested in scouting," he says of his longtime approach. "When you have to, you use statistics to back it up."

Jocketty doesn't pooh-pooh sabremetrics, the statistical evaluation tool that's been the rage of the past decade and has made rock stars out of younger general managers like Oakland's Billy Beane and Boston's Theo Epstein. But he assigns it a secondary role to traditional scouting and player development.

IslandRed
10-03-2010, 12:52 AM
The original blog post just seemed ridiculous to me -- a brief acknowledgment that this wasn't Jocketty's first rodeo, surrounded by implications that we can't use this year's team as evidence he knows what he's doing, as if that other decade in the GM's office was erased from history. I think history has proven that he has a clue. It's not a system (a word the blogger frequently used) one can write a book about, but that's not Walt's problem.

jojo
10-03-2010, 11:24 AM
Jocketty inherited ALOT of the reason the Reds were able to make the playoffs this season. But he also wasn't a passive hand.

It's reasonable IMHO to wonder if the Reds make the playoffs this year if Jocketty wasn't given the reigns. But he also inherited alot that will make it easier for him to keep the Reds heads above water. The youth on the roster and the very sound farm have to be encouraging for even the most curmudgeony of Reds fans.

For me things started getting really interesting when he traded for Rolen because that was when a road map for the potential to challenge for the playoffs started to emerge from fog.

jojo
10-03-2010, 11:34 AM
As for the theme in the undercurrent of this thread, i.e. old school vs new school, it's kind of a meaningless argument. Isn't the best answer the one where both approaches give rise to a consensus?

blumj
10-03-2010, 11:35 AM
Just a thought, but, maybe if you look at it from the Cards side, part of the reason the Reds are in the postseason is because the Cards are so thin, and part of the reason for that is the condition he left them in.

mdccclxix
10-03-2010, 01:47 PM
Just a thought, but, maybe if you look at it from the Cards side, part of the reason the Reds are in the postseason is because the Cards are so thin, and part of the reason for that is the condition he left them in.

It's worth considering, but Alonso and Leake are both already in the majors for the Reds.

Looking at St. Louis, Walt is responsible for these cornerstones:

Albert - draft
Carpenter - FA (released by TOR)
Wainwright - trade
Rasmus - draft
Ludwick - FA
Jay - draft
Garcia - draft
Franklin - FA
Shumaker - draft
Ryan - draft
Molina - draft
McClellan -draft
Motte - draft
Boggs- draft
Mater - draft
Hawksworth - draft

He is not responsible for these players:

Holliday - trade
Lohse - bad contract
Freese - traded for Edmonds
Westbrook - trade
Reyes- FA
Miles - FA
Felipe - FA
Suppan - FA
LaRue - FA

Considering St. Louis gave up 2 1st rounders and a 2nd rounder for less than a year of Holliday, AND that so much of the current on-field leadership of this Cards was drafted by Walt, or picked up for spare change, you have to start asking questions about the current Cards regime, if you ask me. Right now, the Holliday trade and contract is looking to be potentially crippling, will they make the same mistake by signing Westbrook to a big contract? The Lohse deal was awful as well. Plugging a guy like Felipe in is not something that Walt would do, IMO. I'd be critical if I were a Cards fan, just not with Walt. Those were the good ol' days.

TheNext44
10-03-2010, 02:01 PM
Just a thought, but, maybe if you look at it from the Cards side, part of the reason the Reds are in the postseason is because the Cards are so thin, and part of the reason for that is the condition he left them in.

First, the main reason why the Cards are so thin, is 14 years of winning baseball. Eventually, picking in the 20's every year in the draft will catch up to you, and they never had the payroll to make up the difference.

Second, jocketty left three years ago. That is plenty of time to re-stock and rebuild, no matter how barren he left them. As shown above, the Cards made a lot of dumb moves after he left, and not too many smart ones. Seriously, Jocketty left the Cards with an MVP, two Cy Young candidates, an all star catcher, and young guys like Garcia and Rasmus. A smart GM could have built a solid team around that in three years.

TheNext44
10-03-2010, 02:04 PM
As for the theme in the undercurrent of this thread, i.e. old school vs new school, it's kind of a meaningless argument. Isn't the best answer the one where both approaches give rise to a consensus?

Which is why your signature makes so much sense. :)

Scrap Irony
10-03-2010, 05:47 PM
As for the theme in the undercurrent of this thread, i.e. old school vs new school, it's kind of a meaningless argument. Isn't the best answer the one where both approaches give rise to a consensus?

Don't see any undercurrent in this thread of old school and new. At all, in fact. I see an assumption in logic (i.e., many GMs could have done what Jocketty did, as he stepped into a great situation) and a discussion about the relative value of the job Jocketty has done.

Jocketty has, throughout his career as a GM, had success however he's measured players. I assume he's smart enough to use the best of both worlds. I'd guess 99% of Redszone posters (at least) would agree with that choice, BTW.

dougdirt
10-03-2010, 05:59 PM
http://www.forbes.com/2010/06/15/cincinnati-reds-gm-business-sports-walt-jocketty.html

That says he uses stats. It doesn't tell us which ones. For all we know, he uses batting average and ERA by solely reading that.

Brutus
10-03-2010, 06:12 PM
That says he uses stats. It doesn't tell us which ones. For all we know, he uses batting average and ERA by solely reading that.

Given the premise of statistical analysis, I don't think it's much of a leap to conclude it means sabermetric stats.

After all, the "stat" movement wasn't made based on pushing ERA and batting average. It seems common sense as to what is being referred.

jojo
10-03-2010, 06:20 PM
Jocketty clearly favors a scouting approach but he doesn't strike me as an intellectually incurious guy.

RedsManRick
10-03-2010, 07:10 PM
Given the premise of statistical analysis, I don't think it's much of a leap to conclude it means sabermetric stats.

After all, the "stat" movement wasn't made based on pushing ERA and batting average. It seems common sense as to what is being referred.

Some people think using BA w/ RISP and platoon splits is using advanced statistics. I've heard OPS and WHIP both referenced as sabermetric stats multiple times this year. There's a lot of room within "sabermetrics".

Even conceding the point that all teams use advanced stats, it's still an open question regarding the degree to which they are used. While the consensus Jojo describes is certainly the ideal, what do they do in the face of a conflict. I don't know what the best balance is, but everything I've heard suggests that the Reds are among the less sophisticated teams stats-wise and place the smallest value on them in the decision making process.

Or put another way, every team uses stats. Few teams use stats well.

Scrap Irony
10-03-2010, 07:17 PM
I don't know what the best balance is, but everything I've heard suggests that the Reds are among the less sophisticated teams stats-wise and place the smallest value on them in the decision making process.

You keep saying this, but at least woy has provided links to show the opposite. You got any?

And, fwiw, Jocketty's decisions seem to be generally dead-on, regardless of how he gets there.

westofyou
10-03-2010, 08:04 PM
Some people think using BA w/ RISP and platoon splits is using advanced statistics. I've heard OPS and WHIP both referenced as sabermetric stats multiple times this year. There's a lot of room within "sabermetrics".

Even conceding the point that all teams use advanced stats, it's still an open question regarding the degree to which they are used. While the consensus Jojo describes is certainly the ideal, what do they do in the face of a conflict. I don't know what the best balance is, but everything I've heard suggests that the Reds are among the less sophisticated teams stats-wise and place the smallest value on them in the decision making process.

Or put another way, every team uses stats. Few teams use stats well.


Actually that would be the Phillies.


Since I've been here, we don't have an in-house stats guy and I kind of feel we never will. We're not a statistics-driven organization by any means.

Charlie Manuel

http://espn.go.com/blog/sweetspot/post/_/id/2018/do-phillies-ignore-sabermetrics

RedsManRick
10-03-2010, 08:23 PM
You keep saying this, but at least woy has provided links to show the opposite. You got any?

And, fwiw, Jocketty's decisions seem to be generally dead-on, regardless of how he gets there.

Considering that Jocketty's exit from StL was in part because of differences related to the use of quantitative analysis, I don't think this is exactly a claim out of the blue.

I've heard this multiple times in podcasts with people that have contacts in major league front offices. Let me see what I can find, print-wise.

http://www.examiner.com/sports-business-in-national/walt-jocketty-is-the-best-gm-baseball


That is not to say that he pooh-poohs Sabermetrics or the new fangled way Billy Beane and Theo Epstein build their clubs. Nope, Jocketty does not take a black and white approach to the game; he uses the Sabermetrics part of it, but assigns it to a secondary role behind the traditional role of scouting and player development.

I wish I had something from his lips, but I imagine most people would agree with that synopsis. I'd be very surprised to hear that the Reds were among the top 15 most progressive organizations in their use of quantitative analysis. That doesn't mean you can't be successful. Just ask the Braves and Twins. It just is.

As for dead on, let's not forget Willy Taveras, Mike Lincoln, etc. He's made a number of moves which were clearly bad ideas from the start. But on balance, I think Jocketty has improved both the 25 man roster and the organization as a whole. However, I think the vast majority of the explanation for the wins increase in 2010 is maturation of talent in the system when he got here. As far as I'm concerned, Jocketty gets credit for 4 big things that have contributed to our success this year:
1) Did not trade away any major young talent
2) Fired Dick Pole and hired Bryan Price
3) Traded for and resigned Scott Rolen
4) Signed Arthur Rhodes

Beyond that, you're talking about role players, including Cabrera and Gomes. (and one could easily make the argument that those two guys kept us from winning more games)

But I'll go back to my refrain from earlier in the thread. I don't dislike Jocketty. I've actually been impressed by him when I've heard him talk. But Jockety's time in Cincy does nothing to either validate or invalidate his approach. He simply hasn't had enough time to exert enough influence to make conclusions about his added value. It seems some people just can't take "we don't know" for an answer.

westofyou
10-03-2010, 08:40 PM
Of course the A's were the first team to use computers in the 80's (Jackie Moore received some flak for it in the press) and Alderson was a mover in that approach to the game.

So in essence Jocketty's knowledge of what developed there is fairly advanced.

They just aren't making a movie out of his time there.

mdccclxix
10-03-2010, 09:14 PM
Considering that Jocketty's exit from StL was in part because of differences related to the use of quantitative analysis, I don't think this is exactly a claim out of the blue.

I've heard this multiple times in podcasts with people that have contacts in major league front offices. Let me see what I can find, print-wise.

http://www.examiner.com/sports-business-in-national/walt-jocketty-is-the-best-gm-baseball


I wish I had something from his lips, but I imagine most people would agree with that synopsis. I'd be very surprised to hear that the Reds were among the top 15 most progressive organizations in their use of quantitative analysis. That doesn't mean you can't be successful. Just ask the Braves and Twins. It just is.

As for dead on, let's not forget Willy Taveras, Mike Lincoln, etc. He's made a number of moves which were clearly bad ideas from the start. But on balance, I think Jocketty has improved both the 25 man roster and the organization as a whole. However, I think the vast majority of the explanation for the wins increase in 2010 is maturation of talent in the system when he got here. As far as I'm concerned, Jocketty gets credit for 4 big things that have contributed to our success this year:
1) Did not trade away any major young talent
2) Fired Dick Pole and hired Bryan Price
3) Traded for and resigned Scott Rolen
4) Signed Arthur Rhodes

Beyond that, you're talking about role players, including Cabrera and Gomes. (and one could easily make the argument that those two guys kept us from winning more games)

But I'll go back to my refrain from earlier in the thread. I don't dislike Jocketty. I've actually been impressed by him when I've heard him talk. But Jockety's time in Cincy does nothing to either validate or invalidate his approach. He simply hasn't had enough time to exert enough influence to make conclusions about his added value. It seems some people just can't take "we don't know" for an answer.

So, are you're saying that looking at St. Louis' record during his tenure isn't enough to judge his approach? Is it a matter of "times changing" and eventually guys like Jocketty well be surpassed by stats-first teams? What is the question remaining about his approach? I guess, in my mind, Jocketty shouldn't have to prove anything because the scoreboard has settled it. As for his time in Cincinnati, something seems to be working, yet to say that it's because Walt did, among other things, nothing to screw it up, belies his history and is bordering on an insult to the man.

edabbs44
10-03-2010, 09:19 PM
As for dead on, let's not forget Willy Taveras, Mike Lincoln, etc. He's made a number of moves which were clearly bad ideas from the start. But on balance, I think Jocketty has improved both the 25 man roster and the organization as a whole. However, I think the vast majority of the explanation for the wins increase in 2010 is maturation of talent in the system when he got here. As far as I'm concerned, Jocketty gets credit for 4 big things that have contributed to our success this year:
1) Did not trade away any major young talent
2) Fired Dick Pole and hired Bryan Price
3) Traded for and resigned Scott Rolen
4) Signed Arthur Rhodes

Beyond that, you're talking about role players, including Cabrera and Gomes. (and one could easily make the argument that those two guys kept us from winning more games)

What are your thoughts on these?

1) Signing Chapman
2) Starting the year with Leake in the rotation
3) Trading for Masset
4) Sticking with Bruce and (especially) Stubbs during some lean times this year.
5) Trading for Hernandez.

Sea Ray
10-03-2010, 10:08 PM
This all really misses the point. We're splitting hairs. It's not about whether you want to give him 65% or 50% of the credit. It's whether or not what he's done in Cincinatti proves that his method is better than a more analytical one. And on that front, this debate about proportion of credit or how baked the cake was is really irrelevant, unless you believe he deserves complete credit.

First of all, who's saying that it's 100% settled that "his method is better than an analytical one"? Seems to me only an overly defensive SABR guy would say such a thing.

What we can say is he did a great job adding/subtracting from what he inherited. As to whether his approach is superior to another is a subject that could be argued endlessly. I would merely say that no one could have expected more no matter what "method" was used to GM this team.

Sea Ray
10-03-2010, 10:15 PM
Beyond that, you're talking about role players, including Cabrera and Gomes. (and one could easily make the argument that those two guys kept us from winning more games)




I disagree with you here. It'd be very difficult to make the case that Cabrera and Gomes were detriments to winning this year. Those are two positions that are very thin on this team and he added them and they contributed a great deal. Cabrera's contributions go well beyond his numbers.

Has any writer or blogger written that the Reds were damaged by signing these guys or are you the lone wolf on this one because I've not read such nonsense until your post?

Scrap Irony
10-03-2010, 10:31 PM
What are your thoughts on these?

1) Signing Chapman
2) Starting the year with Leake in the rotation
3) Trading for Masset
4) Sticking with Bruce and (especially) Stubbs during some lean times this year.
5) Trading for Hernandez.

The Masset deal is perhaps his most impressive, IMO. He dealt a guy no one wanted for a guy no one had heard of and came out with a guy who's among the better set-up men in the game.

RedsManRick
10-03-2010, 10:41 PM
So, are you're saying that looking at St. Louis' record during his tenure isn't enough to judge his approach? Is it a matter of "times changing" and eventually guys like Jocketty well be surpassed by stats-first teams? What is the question remaining about his approach? I guess, in my mind, Jocketty shouldn't have to prove anything because the scoreboard has settled it. As for his time in Cincinnati, something seems to be working, yet to say that it's because Walt did, among other things, nothing to screw it up, belies his history and is bordering on an insult to the man.

If you want to judge his approach, you should certainly do so based on his time in St. Louis. I was responding to the initial article which was about using his time with the Reds.

Scrap Irony
10-03-2010, 10:49 PM
...Beyond that, you're talking about role players, including Cabrera and Gomes. (and one could easily make the argument that those two guys kept us from winning more games)

But I'll go back to my refrain from earlier in the thread. I don't dislike Jocketty. I've actually been impressed by him when I've heard him talk. But Jockety's time in Cincy does nothing to either validate or invalidate his approach. He simply hasn't had enough time to exert enough influence to make conclusions about his added value. It seems some people just can't take "we don't know" for an answer.

Again, this is a HUGE assumption, RMR. Most GMs don't have role players who give the team positive value.

Yet, Jocketty has consistently found role players that help him win games, divisions, and pennants.

As to validating his approach, I don't pretend to know whether it does or not. I DO know Jocketty's approach is successful. Period. And that two years is certainly enough time for a GM to put a stamp on a team and an organization

gm
10-03-2010, 10:59 PM
The Reds catch and throw the ball like a playoff team, now

Walt's mission to upgrade the team's defense is accomplished

Sure, the offense, pitching and bench has improved, but the 2 least-qualifiable areas (defense, and intangibles) have made the difference re: 10 games in the standings

bigredmachine1976
10-03-2010, 11:06 PM
What's the Reds record in games Rolen has started since coming to Cincinnati? That number tells you all you need to know. Were there some pieces already in place? Yes, is Jockety responsible for where we are now? Yes.

RedsManRick
10-03-2010, 11:20 PM
What are your thoughts on these?

1) Signing Chapman
2) Starting the year with Leake in the rotation
3) Trading for Masset
4) Sticking with Bruce and (especially) Stubbs during some lean times this year.
5) Trading for Hernandez.

1) Had very little to do with the 2010 W-L record
2) Was that his decision? I'm guessing that came down to Dusty and his staff.
3) That's a good one I overlooked. Getting something of real value for Griffey was a steal.
4) Again, I think these types of decisions, while ultimately in the GMs hands, are made largely by the coaching staff.
5) I think Hanigan could have done just fine given the full-time gig.

RedsManRick
10-03-2010, 11:21 PM
Again, this is a HUGE assumption, RMR. Most GMs don't have role players who give the team positive value.

Really? I'd be surprised if this were the case. Do you have any data on this one?[/QUOTE]

Scrap Irony
10-03-2010, 11:25 PM
The Reds catch and throw the ball like a playoff team, now

Walt's mission to upgrade the team's defense is accomplished

Sure, the offense, pitching and bench has improved, but the 2 least-qualifiable areas (defense, and intangibles) have made the difference re: 10 games in the standings

In 2007, the Reds star players-- Dunn and Hamilton-- could rightfully be compared to this season's Votto and Bruce. The difference between that season's offense and this one? The bench and the role players.

In 2007, the Reds starting pitchers-- Harang, Arroyo, Lohse, and Belisle-- look an awful lot like the first four this season. The difference? Depth and fifth starting candidates.

In 2007, the Red bullpen was led by an okay closer with problems really dominating. The difference? Guys like Rhodes, Masset, and Chapman.

Similar stars. Different results.

Why?

Depth and defense.

westofyou
10-03-2010, 11:27 PM
Really? I'd be surprised if this were the case. Do you have any data on this one?

Would you look at it or just gloss over it like the stuff I posted earlier?

Roy Tucker
10-03-2010, 11:32 PM
Jocketty took a core of good talent and augmented it into a winning team. Other recent Reds GMs hadn't been able to do that. I think it was astute GM'ing to do that.

But only time will tell if WJ can use that talent and good kharma to beget more talent and keep on winning. Continue a good farm system, make good drafts, ensure good coaching, make wise signings, know when to hold them, know when to let go. That is all a different skill set than getting a team over the playoff hump. We'll see when we get there.

Scrap Irony
10-03-2010, 11:47 PM
Really? I'd be surprised if this were the case. Do you have any data on this one?[/QUOTE]

What type of data would do it for you, RMR?

According to WAR, the Reds had 34 guys with positive value. (That would seem to support the contention that Jocketty has an affinity for finding/ using good bench pieces.)

If I compared that number to, say, St. Louis and found the Cardinals had 25, would that change your mind?

Just choosing teams at random, the Brewers had 28, the Twins had 32, the G-man had 30, and the Red Sox had 28.

Would that work, or would you prefer to pick the measure that shows value?

REDREAD
10-04-2010, 01:40 PM
ATwo examples of this:
a) Rolen: It appears that Jocketty had information about both Rolen's willingness to rework his deal (increasing our financial flexibility) and on the health of his shoulder that I did not, making the trade more reasonable. I still believe he gave up too much for him given the dynamics of teh situation, but in the context of 2010, Rolen > EE & Stewart.


EE had negative trade value. I think everyone can agree with that.

Stewart was vastly overrated at the time. I believe that at the time, but I know not everyone believes that. Some people have a difficult time believing that Walt and his guys had a more accurate projection of Stewart than they did.

It looks like the Jays might be thinking that Zach's future is in relief..

http://www.forums.mlb.com/n/pfx/forum.aspx?tsn=1&nav=messages&webtag=ml-bluejays&tid=69204


Jays tell RHP Zach Stewart, one of top arms in system along with Henderson Alvarez: "Be prepared to start or pitch in relief next spring."

We will have to see how that pans out.

Rolen at bare minimum was going to give solid defense at 3b, and was a good bet to out hit EdE.. EdE was simply horrible.

The only potential downside to this trade, IMO, was that Rolen might be overpaid for the production he gave us (if he couldn't stay healthy).. Other than that, it was a slam dunk win for the Reds, IMO.

We've had too many years hoping that some guy that put together a good month or two at AAA is going to be the next franchise savior.. A smart GM sells high on prospects like Zach Stewart.

REDREAD
10-04-2010, 02:02 PM
Every single player? probably not. But if less than 50% of the team's net production is coming from players that GM acquired, I think it's fair to say prior GMs played a significant role.
.

Sure, every team has some work done by a prior GM.

Heck, you can say part of the credit for getting McGwire goes to whoever drafted TJ Matthews, because the argument can be made that made the move possible..

It's a lot easier to take a team from 65 wins to 75 wins, than it is to turn a 75 win team into a 85 win team.

Walt made the team into a contender in about 2.5-3 years (depending on how you count time).. The first postseason appearance in 15 years. None of the recent prior GMs were able to do that. Heck, they weren't able to get the team over 500 (other than Bowden), so frankly, their system didn't work.

I'm not trying to dismiss what you say, but Walt's system (whatever it is) has worked on two franchises now. He started with two seperate franchises which were mediocre when he arrived and took them to the playoffs. I don't pretend to fully understand his thought process, but it works.

If people want to split hairs and say that Cairo exceeded expectations, the same argument could be made for Brandon Phillips and Josh Hamilton. In the end, they were all good moves because they worked.. Even if they were somewhat of a gamble and the outcome could not be predicted.

edabbs44
10-04-2010, 09:01 PM
1) Had very little to do with the 2010 W-L record
2) Was that his decision? I'm guessing that came down to Dusty and his staff.
3) That's a good one I overlooked. Getting something of real value for Griffey was a steal.
4) Again, I think these types of decisions, while ultimately in the GMs hands, are made largely by the coaching staff.
5) I think Hanigan could have done just fine given the full-time gig.

1) Since that was your original premise, then you are correct. But I have to say that Jocketty played Chapman's situation correctly. He easily could have felt pressured to call him up early but got the best of both worlds, maximum minor league experience with playoff eligibility. Kudos on that.

2) Walt definitely had a say in Leake's starting in the majors. Maybe Dusty told him he deserved it, but final decision goes to the GM in that case. Walt isn't going to hurt someone's development just because the manager thought he deserved to start in the majors, especially when you had a guy like Wood who easily could have won the job as well.

3) Word.

4) Disagree, I am sure that Dusty was actively involved in the discussions but Walt is also involved. Dusty doesn't intimately know who his replacements would be. Walt needs to see the big picture.

5) Maybe, but that's not really what you are saying. That's like taking away Masset just because you thought that Ondrusek could have done the same job. Hanigan had a very solid overall season but you never know what he would have done if he was playing 120 games at catcher. Bottom line is that Ramon was a solid addition and resigning and formed a very solid tandem with Hanigan. It's a luxury to have 2 catchers who can provide value while being rested, especially at this point in the season.

Sea Ray
10-04-2010, 10:27 PM
5) I think Hanigan could have done just fine given the full-time gig.

Perhaps but you need two catchers. The comp isn't so much one of Hanigan-Hernandez but Hernandez-Corky or whoever.

Suffice to say the catching tandem has been very productive thus we really can't complain, can we?

RedsManRick
10-04-2010, 10:37 PM
Perhaps but you need two catchers. The comp isn't so much one of Hanigan-Hernandez but Hernandez-Corky or whoever.

Suffice to say the catching tandem has been very productive thus we really can't complain, can we?

Not every team splits starts at C as much as the Reds do. I get your point, but I would have had Hanigan playing 5 days a week.

In any event, I'm pretty sure I wasn't complaining about our catcher situation. Ramon was a solid addition.

jojo
10-05-2010, 02:34 AM
Ramon was projected to post a wOBA of .317 given a survey of projection systems such as James/Zips/CHONE/Marcels. He posted a wOBA of .350.

Next year he's much more likely to post a wOBA around .315.

Sometimes you get lucky and a guy defies his true talent. This was a season where the Reds hit on the inside straight more than they missed. RH was one of those.

dougdirt
10-05-2010, 02:45 AM
Ramon was projected to post a wOBA of .317 given a survey of projection systems such as James/Zips/CHONE/Marcels. He posted a wOBA of .350.

Next year he's much more likely to post a wOBA around .315.

Sometimes you get lucky and a guy defies his true talent. This was a season where the Reds hit on the inside straight more than they missed. RH was one of those.

Yes, but hitting it made your decision to chase it smart. Right?

It is pretty easily to see for me, that it is just simply too early to suggest that the headline of the article is right or wrong. The Reds have been the 'breakout team' pick for the last few years for a reason.... they had quite a chunk of young talent. Walt walked into that. At the same time, he made some good moves along the way to help the Reds too via the trade and the free agent market.

Brutus
10-05-2010, 03:08 AM
Ramon was projected to post a wOBA of .317 given a survey of projection systems such as James/Zips/CHONE/Marcels. He posted a wOBA of .350.

Next year he's much more likely to post a wOBA around .315.

Sometimes you get lucky and a guy defies his true talent. This was a season where the Reds hit on the inside straight more than they missed. RH was one of those.

This is one of those debates that I'll stay on my death bed staying on the other side of this fence. I truly don't believe projection systems should be the judge & jury of true talent. Actual results, not how they're manipulated, should do that.

I'm not saying the projection systems don't give a good indicator of what may or may not happen, but I don't think true talent lies within what a computer projection says it does, but what the player is truly capable of. In the case of Ramon, it's true the last few years were not indicative of a guy likely to hit .350, but at the same time, he had hit between .330-.350 wOBA for four straight seasons prior to being traded to Cincinnati. Therefore, he's shown he has the talent and ability to do it, so it's not prudent to let the computers say he isn't something that he's done before.

I prefer to judge someone based on what they've done and not what someone thinks they'll do going forward. I know the projection systems are based on weighted performances of the past, as well as aging curves, etc., but just because someone aged on a certain arc does not mean another person will.

All this to say that it's highly unlikely Ramon will do this again next year. But let his on-field performances speak to his true talent, not what the computers project as his true talent.

TheNext44
10-05-2010, 03:10 AM
Ramon was projected to post a wOBA of .317 given a survey of projection systems such as James/Zips/CHONE/Marcels. He posted a wOBA of .350.

Next year he's much more likely to post a wOBA around .315.

Sometimes you get lucky and a guy defies his true talent. This was a season where the Reds hit on the inside straight more than they missed. RH was one of those.

Jocketty has made a career out of hitting inside straights, over and over again.

Moving away from the poker analogy, I think the true talent of a GM is the ability to out guess the game, to know which hunches to trust and which not to, to pick the guys that no one else thinks will do well, and dump the guys that everyone wants and you are meh about. This can be done through a better ability to understand stats, or a better ability to scout a player, or most likely, a combination of both.

However Jocketty does it, he's been doing it as well as anyone for the past 15+ years.

dougdirt
10-05-2010, 03:14 AM
All this to say that it's highly unlikely Ramon will do this again next year. But let his on-field performances speak to his true talent, not what the computers project as his true talent.

Ramon Hernandez has a career BABIP of .278. This year it was .332. While I agree with the idea that a model isn't going to tell us ones true talent level, I don't believe that RH showed us his this year either. It was an outlier due to a 50+ point boost to his career BABIP that isn't likely to be sustained at all, especially when we consider that his LD rate was perfectly in line with his career.

Brutus
10-05-2010, 03:20 AM
Ramon Hernandez has a career BABIP of .278. This year it was .332. While I agree with the idea that a model isn't going to tell us ones true talent level, I don't believe that RH showed us his this year either. It was an outlier due to a 50+ point boost to his career BABIP that isn't likely to be sustained at all, especially when we consider that his LD rate was perfectly in line with his career.

But again, he hit .330-.350 for four straight seasons and in none of those years did he break .297 BABIP.

So I don't think the BABIP aspect tells us too much. I'm sure it contributed, but there's really no way of knowing for sure just how much it had to do with it.

If Hernandez had never broken .330 and then suddenly has a .350 season witha .330 BABIP, I would wholheartedly agree with you. But that's not really the case. So I have a hard time passing it off as largely BABIP when he's done this before without the fortuitous BIP average.

I'm not saying he's likely to repeat the .350. But I am saying people are being too dismissive of the .350.

jojo
10-05-2010, 03:23 AM
Ramon Hernandez has a career BABIP of .278. This year it was .332. While I agree with the idea that a model isn't going to tell us ones true talent level, I don't believe that RH showed us his this year either. It was an outlier due to a 50+ point boost to his career BABIP that isn't likely to be sustained at all, especially when we consider that his LD rate was perfectly in line with his career.

Right. Giving a veteran catcher $3M with a vesting option that almost certainly had no chance of vesting to split time with a relatively inexperienced battery mate especially given a young rotation is not really an earth shattering decision and its certainly defensible. But there was no way they counted on RH having he offensive year that he did. We probably shouldn't act like Jocketty did.

jojo
10-05-2010, 03:31 AM
But again, he hit .330-.350 for four straight seasons and in none of those years did he break .297 BABIP.

So I don't think the BABIP aspect tells us too much. I'm sure it contributed, but there's really no way of knowing for sure just how much it had to do with it.

If Hernandez had never broken .330 and then suddenly has a .350 season witha .330 BABIP, I would wholheartedly agree with you. But that's not really the case. So I have a hard time passing it off as largely BABIP when he's done this before without the fortuitous BIP average.

I'm not saying he's likely to repeat the .350. But I am saying people are being too dismissive of the .350.

RH hadn't posted a wOBA of .350 since 2006 and he had only done it twice in his career before this year, his age 34 season. He hadn't been a 2 WAR starting catcher in three seasons. His previous 1250 PAs, played largely in hitter's parks saw him perform 20 runs below a major league average bat. The Reds paid him like he'd be a little below a 1 WAR player.

It doesn't seem likely they were acting on a hunch and were expecting what they got.

Good for us, but again, sometimes it pays to be lucky.

Brutus
10-05-2010, 04:41 AM
RH hadn't posted a wOBA of .350 since 2006 and he had only done it twice in his career before this year, his age 34 season. He hadn't been a 2 WAR starting catcher in three seasons. His previous 1250 PAs, played largely in hitter's parks saw him perform 20 runs below a major league average bat. The Reds paid him like he'd be a little below a 1 WAR player.

It doesn't seem likely they were acting on a hunch and were expecting what they got.

Good for us, but again, sometimes it pays to be lucky.

We don't really know what they expected though. Hypothetically, if they expected .330 and got .350, isn't that still a shrewd move?

It's possible they simply got lucky. It's also possible they had a good idea what they might get. Even if we agree .350 wasn't expected, and by all means I doubt they expected that much (I know I wouldn't have), it doesn't necessarily mean this was tomfoolery.

jojo
10-05-2010, 04:53 AM
We don't really know what they expected though. Hypothetically, if they expected .330 and got .350, isn't that still a shrewd move?

It's possible they simply got lucky. It's also possible they had a good idea what they might get. Even if we agree .350 wasn't expected, and by all means I doubt they expected that much (I know I wouldn't have), it doesn't necessarily mean this was tomfoolery.

First, they shouldn't have expected .330.

But as a matter of philosophy, I don't think credit should be assigned (positive or negative) for the unexpected when evaluating decisions.

Brutus
10-05-2010, 05:08 AM
First, they shouldn't have expected .330.

But as a matter of philosophy, I don't think credit should be assigned (positive or negative) for the unexpected when evaluating decisions.

Expectation is in the eyes of the beholder. Your expectations or ZIPS' expectations might not have aligned with theirs.

I think most everything we criticize or applaud on message boards is probably too subjective to say with any certainty one way or another. And perhaps in that realm there is often too much blame or credit assigned. But it's also not fair to credit or discredit based on analysis or expectations that may not have even been shared by the executives.

For me it comes down to this: for the last 7-10 years, the Reds were making more "meh" moves than "really?!" And now, under Jocketty, the minority has gone the other direction. To me, these exact types of moves seem to be an indicator on the macro that the front office must have pretty sound expectations.

Clearly, they're not perfect (Wily Taveras comes to mind), but the fact we're seeing a lot more moves getting a good ROI is reason enough to give some positive credit their direction.

jojo
10-05-2010, 05:17 AM
Expectation is in the eyes of the beholder. Your expectations or ZIPS' expectations might not have aligned with theirs.

I think most everything we criticize or applaud on message boards is probably too subjective to say with any certainty one way or another. And perhaps in that realm there is often too much blame or credit assigned. But it's also not fair to credit or discredit based on analysis or expectations that may not have even been shared by the executives.

For me it comes down to this: for the last 7-10 years, the Reds were making more "meh" moves than "really?!" And now, under Jocketty, the minority has gone the other direction. To me, these exact types of moves seem to be an indicator on the macro that the front office must have pretty sound expectations.

Clearly, they're not perfect (Wily Taveras comes to mind), but the fact we're seeing a lot more moves getting a good ROI is reason enough to give some positive credit their direction.

You're conflating a lot of generalities and applying them to a specific. Given RH's performance over his last 1250 PAs coming into the season, it just isn't likely the Reds were expecting his 2010. If indeed they were, the strongest case to made about that hypothetical scenario is that they made poor decision and got lucky. Either way, lady luck had a lot of sway.

I just seriously doubt that Jocketty saw RH as a true talent 4+ WAR player (full season) as the above argument implies...

edabbs44
10-05-2010, 06:28 AM
Ramon was projected to post a wOBA of .317 given a survey of projection systems such as James/Zips/CHONE/Marcels. He posted a wOBA of .350.

Next year he's much more likely to post a wOBA around .315.

Sometimes you get lucky and a guy defies his true talent. This was a season where the Reds hit on the inside straight more than they missed. RH was one of those.

The original point was that Ramon didn't add to the Reds win total, that is why I brought him up. Not whether or not WJ got lucky.

But even so, do you think that Walt and co may have believed that Ramon was better than his past few seasons would suggest due to something that CHONE was potentially unaware of?

jojo
10-05-2010, 06:46 AM
But even so, do you think that Walt and co may have believed that Ramon was better than his past few seasons would suggest due to something that CHONE was potentially unaware of?

I don't really think that's likely. Why? Because it's tough to look at his numbers and see a meaningful change indicative of a change in true skill. The things that really pop out are a BABIP that is 54 pts higher than his career average and an IH% that is roughly double his career average.

He's definitely a "clock strike midnight" candidate.

TheNext44
10-05-2010, 09:01 AM
I don't really think that's likely. Why? Because it's tough to look at his numbers and see a meaningful change indicative of a change in true skill. The things that really pop out are a BABIP that is 54 pts higher than his career average and an IH% that is roughly double his career average.

He's definitely a "clock strike midnight" candidate.

It's unlikely if all he ever looked at and believed in was numbers.

Hard to know what Jocketty and Co. expected out of Hernandez in 2010, but he definitely expected more out of Hernandez when he traded for him than what most people did... and he was right.

jojo
10-05-2010, 09:07 AM
It's unlikely if all he ever looked at and believed in was numbers.

Hard to know what Jocketty and Co. expected out of Hernandez in 2010, but he definitely expected more out of Hernandez when he traded for him than what most people did... and he was right.

Actually from a performance standpoint, he fired blanks on that one as RH was a .3 WAR player during the year the Reds traded for him.

edabbs44
10-05-2010, 09:20 AM
I don't really think that's likely. Why? Because it's tough to look at his numbers and see a meaningful change indicative of a change in true skill. The things that really pop out are a BABIP that is 54 pts higher than his career average and an IH% that is roughly double his career average.

He's definitely a "clock strike midnight" candidate.

If some guy came up to me at Caesars and ask me to invest $25k with him in his roulette investment program and he used last night's hot streak as evidence of his ability, I'd probably question him.

If he provided me with evidence of 15 years of solid returns, I may want to hear more.

REDREAD
10-05-2010, 09:27 AM
As for dead on, let's not forget Willy Taveras, Mike Lincoln, etc. He's made a number of moves which were clearly bad ideas from the start.


I disagree that Mike Lincoln extension was a bad idea from the start.
Lincoln had a great year. Then his neck/back got hurt. It happens with relief pitching.. I can't recall a single poster that had a problem with the Lincoln extension. It was relatively small money, and just 2 years.

If Lincoln is the second worst thing Jocketty ever does, I am going to be very pleased as a Reds fan.

REDREAD
10-05-2010, 09:33 AM
Beyond that, you're talking about role players, including Cabrera and Gomes. (and one could easily make the argument that those two guys kept us from winning more games)
.

I just remember the previous administration running out players that were obviously below average.. Dickerson, Freel, EdE, Keppinger, Bako, etc..

Walt identified the weak players in the starting 8 and either upgraded them or replaced them with more value oriented players (Gomes).. Gomes is not my dream LF either, but if Dunn was still in LF, there's no money to sign the Cuban Missle. Or there's no money for Rolen + Cabera. Or both.

Based on previous GMs body of work, I can almost guarantee that we would not be contending this year if they were still around.. It's silly to imply that the Reds were on the cusp of contending, and Walt had little work to do, and the moves he made were trivial. He had vision, and added exactly what the team needed.

edabbs44
10-05-2010, 09:34 AM
I disagree that Mike Lincoln extension was a bad idea from the start.
Lincoln had a great year. Then his neck/back got hurt. It happens with relief pitching.. I can't recall a single poster that had a problem with the Lincoln extension. It was relatively small money, and just 2 years.

If Lincoln is the second worst thing Jocketty ever does, I am going to be very pleased as a Reds fan.

NL Central Champs and we still need to bring up Taveras. Kind of sad, no?

westofyou
10-05-2010, 09:35 AM
NL Central Champs and we still need to bring up Taveras. Kind of sad, no?

Howsam thought Merv Rettemund was the answer in the OF - over the guy who eventually took the job from him Ken Griffey

REDREAD
10-05-2010, 09:41 AM
Ramon was projected to post a wOBA of .317 given a survey of projection systems such as James/Zips/CHONE/Marcels. He posted a wOBA of .350.

Next year he's much more likely to post a wOBA around .315.

Sometimes you get lucky and a guy defies his true talent. This was a season where the Reds hit on the inside straight more than they missed. RH was one of those.

Or maybe whatever system Walt used to project Ramon's performance is better than James/Zips/etc.

Didn't James predict Jay Bruce to OPS around 1.000 or something crazy like that in 2009? These projection systems always overestimated what Wily Mo Pena would do as well.. They are not perfect. They are based on assumptions, in which numbers are fed in.

In contrast, the Reds had their people watching Ramon all of 2009. They had additional information about his health, the impact of sharing the job with Hannagan, etc.. You can't say that Walt had less information that Bill James and the projection systems, which are based on assumptions which are formed into aging models..

REDREAD
10-05-2010, 09:47 AM
Actually from a performance standpoint, he fired blanks on that one as RH was a .3 WAR player during the year the Reds traded for him.

Still, that's better than what Bako gave us the year before, and more than Freel gave Baltimore, I imagine.

bucksfan2
10-05-2010, 10:20 AM
I don't really think that's likely. Why? Because it's tough to look at his numbers and see a meaningful change indicative of a change in true skill. The things that really pop out are a BABIP that is 54 pts higher than his career average and an IH% that is roughly double his career average.

He's definitely a "clock strike midnight" candidate.

What is true skill? What some projection system or formula decides? What if Walt saw a guy who started to wear down but when healthy was still a good player? What if Walt thought if you could cut back on the games caught you could maximize the offensive production? There are things that a simulation can't tell you and when you put all your faith behind a projection system you are missing a large part of the actual value.

Quite frankly I don't care if he is a "clock strike midnight" candidate. For his tenure in Cincinnati he has produced and is one of the many reasons the Reds are in the playoffs. To me that is worth the investment in salary and I hope they bring him back next season to bridge the gap between when Mes is ready to play.

jojo
10-05-2010, 10:27 AM
Or maybe whatever system Walt used to project Ramon's performance is better than James/Zips/etc.

The problem with that possibility is that RH was essentially the same hitter he was over the previous 1250 PAs with the exception of a couple of things that were mostly out of his control.

jojo
10-05-2010, 10:32 AM
What is true skill? What some projection system or formula decides? What if Walt saw a guy who started to wear down but when healthy was still a good player? What if Walt thought if you could cut back on the games caught you could maximize the offensive production? There are things that a simulation can't tell you and when you put all your faith behind a projection system you are missing a large part of the actual value.

Projection systems have actually proven to be good estimates of what a guy ends up doing.


Quite frankly I don't care if he is a "clock strike midnight" candidate. For his tenure in Cincinnati he has produced and is one of the many reasons the Reds are in the playoffs. To me that is worth the investment in salary and I hope they bring him back next season to bridge the gap between when Mes is ready to play.

This seems like a unnecessarily intractable position to adopt.

Sea Ray
10-05-2010, 10:41 AM
You're conflating a lot of generalities and applying them to a specific. Given RH's performance over his last 1250 PAs coming into the season, it just isn't likely the Reds were expecting his 2010. If indeed they were, the strongest case to made about that hypothetical scenario is that they made poor decision and got lucky. Either way, lady luck had a lot of sway.

I just seriously doubt that Jocketty saw RH as a true talent 4+ WAR player (full season) as the above argument implies...

Sure but if he fell short of those numbers, would it have been a bad deal?

The fact that some here are putting so much emphasis on wOBA and other numbers to judge this deal is hilarious to me. Believe me, Jocketty wanted a lot more out of Hernandez than offensive prowess.

Given the dearth of options, Jocketty was correct to sign RH at the time.

lollipopcurve
10-05-2010, 10:43 AM
What is true skill? What some projection system or formula decides? What if Walt saw a guy who started to wear down but when healthy was still a good player? What if Walt thought if you could cut back on the games caught you could maximize the offensive production? There are things that a simulation can't tell you and when you put all your faith behind a projection system you are missing a large part of the actual value.

"True skill" is a self-congratulatory phrase adopted by people who mistake their statistical models, and the assumptions upon which they're based, to be purveyors of inarguable facts.

Sea Ray
10-05-2010, 10:43 AM
Projection systems have actually proven to be good estimates of what a guy ends up doing.




Sure but it's a mistake to over emphasize those systems when signing a veteran catcher. His value goes well beyond numbers as did Orlando Cabrera

jojo
10-05-2010, 10:54 AM
"True skill" is a self-congratulatory phrase adopted by people who mistake their statistical models, and the assumptions upon which they're based, to be purveyors of inarguable facts.

Not really.

The neat thing is if one actually wishes to check how accurate these things are, they can.

It's a little bit harder than Argumentum ad hominem though but not actually that much harder.

Sea Ray
10-05-2010, 10:59 AM
First, they shouldn't have expected .330.

But as a matter of philosophy, I don't think credit should be assigned (positive or negative) for the unexpected when evaluating decisions.

That's what scouting is all about. The scout who projected Joey Votto to be a star deserves credit. Whereas the guy who projected Willie Greene to be a star (like Jim Bowden) should be questioned. If we could rely solely on projection systems computers could run teams

TheNext44
10-05-2010, 11:13 AM
Actually from a performance standpoint, he fired blanks on that one as RH was a .3 WAR player during the year the Reds traded for him.

1) WAR for catchers is wildly inaccurate considering how difficult it is to apply a number to their defensive production. A catcher's defensive production goes well beyond throwing runners out, passed balls and blocking the plate.

2) In around 130 games in last season in Baltimore, Hernandez had a 1.5 WAR. In around 170 games a Red, Hernandez had a 3.0 WAR. So even if you use WAR, you have to conclude that Jocketty hit the mark better than most on Hernandez. He thought that Hernandez could improve, when most thought he wouldn't and he was right.

edabbs44
10-05-2010, 11:16 AM
Not really.

The neat thing is if one actually wishes to check how accurate these things are, they can.

It's a little bit harder than Argumentum ad hominem though but not actually that much harder.

I find it ironic that saber people ask traditionalists to open their minds and once the traditionalists do, the saber guys slam their's shut.

Just because CHONE didn't see it coming doesn't mean no one could of.

TheNext44
10-05-2010, 11:18 AM
Projection systems have actually proven to be good estimates of what a guy ends up doing.

I believe in projection systems, but to be precise, they are good (actually very good) estimates of what stats a guy is likely to end up with. Might seem like a small semantic difference, but it's a big one for me.

westofyou
10-05-2010, 11:26 AM
I find it ironic that saber people ask traditionalists to open their minds and once the traditionalists do, the saber guys slam their's shut.

Just because CHONE didn't see it coming doesn't mean no one could of.

According to Bill James:

Bad Sabermetrics is when someone says "that's the end of the story"

bucksfan2
10-05-2010, 11:47 AM
According to Bill James:

Bad Sabermetrics is when someone says "that's the end of the story"

I don't really know what good, bad, or mediocre sabermetrics are. But to be honest when I hear WAR used to solely describe the overall value of a player to the team I tend to discard that. When I hear that player X was projected to do this so it was just a bad signing that worked out I discard that.

Over the course of a career when you constantly have to say that a "GM was lucky" maybe he wasn't exactly lucky and you need to reconsider how you measure things.

What I do know about Walt is he came into a franchise that was in a hot mess over the course of a decade. A franchise that had hopes and cores arise that never did anything. A franchise that spent a decade with losing records. He turned that around into a playoff team. A playoff team for the first time in 15 years. A playoff team that will hopefully finally put to end a decade of futility.

Was Walt solely responsible for this turn around, absolutely not. No GM is solely responsible for the team he inherits. But to me Walt understands what a winning team is and what it takes to win. What kind of leadership and experience it requires. What players to invest in and what players to discard.

Homer Bailey
10-05-2010, 12:05 PM
I disagree that Mike Lincoln extension was a bad idea from the start.
Lincoln had a great year. Then his neck/back got hurt. It happens with relief pitching.. I can't recall a single poster that had a problem with the Lincoln extension. It was relatively small money, and just 2 years.

If Lincoln is the second worst thing Jocketty ever does, I am going to be very pleased as a Reds fan.

Whoa. May want to re-read this (http://www.redszone.com/forums/showthread.php?t=72825&highlight=reds+sign+lincoln).

Chip R
10-05-2010, 12:12 PM
That's what scouting is all about. The scout who projected Joey Votto to be a star deserves credit. Whereas the guy who projected Willie Greene to be a star (like Jim Bowden) should be questioned.


I don't think that's necessarily so. Between the time a player is signed and when he makes the major leagues there can be a lot of things that go wrong. If someone like Strasburg doesn't come back from his surgery at the same level that he was before the surgery, should the guy who scouted him be questioned?

jojo
10-05-2010, 12:59 PM
I find it ironic that saber people ask traditionalists to open their minds and once the traditionalists do, the saber guys slam their's shut.

Hardly.


Just because CHONE didn't see it coming doesn't mean no one could of.

Why should anyone have seen it coming? And if it actually is something, it should also be here next season?

edabbs44
10-05-2010, 01:11 PM
Hardly.



Why should anyone have seen it coming? And if it actually is something, it should also be here next season?

It isn't that he definitely saw it coming, it is completely denying that he could have seen anything coming.

My guess is that Walt and Co saw him as a positive addition. It worked out. Kudos to the FO for that. Just because ZIPS didn't agree doesn't mean he got lucky.

REDREAD
10-05-2010, 01:54 PM
The problem with that possibility is that RH was essentially the same hitter he was over the previous 1250 PAs with the exception of a couple of things that were mostly out of his control.

Well, no offense, but the problem with that conclusion is that you are accepting BABIP as a fact, and not a theory.

I have trouble with the blanket statement that everyone's BABIP should be the same. When BABIP varies, it's explained as pure "luck".. that seems to be very anti-analytical, to explain a pretty big performance gap as luck.

Instead, maybe BABIP is a useless stat, or perhaps we don't fully understand it?

Ramon exceeded what the projection systems said he would do.. To write that off as dumb luck is insulting to him and Walt. We don't have access to Walt's thought process or all the data Walt has.

Will Ramon repeat his performance next year? I don't know.. At this point, I am more worried about the playoffs. Freel for Hernandez was an awesome trade.

dougdirt
10-05-2010, 01:58 PM
"True skill" is a self-congratulatory phrase adopted by people who mistake their statistical models, and the assumptions upon which they're based, to be purveyors of inarguable facts.

Disagree. True Skill level is the level at which we believe one is actually able to perform at over a long period of time, multiple seasons. When a guy goes out and has a BABIP 50 points higher than his career average and posts a good season, it isn't very likely that we saw his true skill level unless something changed in their approach (more power, more walks, fewer strikeouts). Problem is, we didn't see those things change with Hernandez, we just saw his BABIP shoot up 50 points higher than his career average (meaning without this season, its probably 60 points higher than his previous career mark). Should we expect him to duplicate that again next season, or regress his BABIP to its normal levels it has generally been at and see his numbers fall into the range where we expect his true talent level to actually be at based upon what we do know about him (how often his balls in play go for hits, how often he walks, how often he strikes out, how often he hits HR's and how much extra base hit power he has)?

Sea Ray
10-05-2010, 01:59 PM
I don't think that's necessarily so. Between the time a player is signed and when he makes the major leagues there can be a lot of things that go wrong. If someone like Strasburg doesn't come back from his surgery at the same level that he was before the surgery, should the guy who scouted him be questioned?

No question injuries impact careers. Is that what you want to hear? Dave Dravecky's career was certainly impacted by his left arm being amputated...

What do these examples have to do with Willie Greene?

REDREAD
10-05-2010, 01:59 PM
Projection systems have actually proven to be good estimates of what a guy ends up doing.
.

Sometimes the projection is right; othertimes, it's wildly inaccurate.

If the projection systems were reliable, there'd be no need for scouts. There'd be no need to even see the player. Just plug in his high school or college stats and let the computer give you the answer. There wouldn't even be a need for the draft.. The computer could just assign everyone their picks based on the projected value, and it would always be right.

Projection systems are just another tool to use. Finding players undervalued by projection systems (as Walt has done) is a valuable skill.

REDREAD
10-05-2010, 02:09 PM
Whoa. May want to re-read this (http://www.redszone.com/forums/showthread.php?t=72825&highlight=reds+sign+lincoln).

Just read the first 5 pages.. only 3 posters disliked it..
Some posters said they would've prefered just one year, but they didn't not come out and say they disliked it.
The reality is that Lincoln had a good enough year where we had to offer him 2 years to retain him. If we didn't give him 2 years, the Twins would have.

Ok, So I will amend to say that the majority of the forum was not strongly opposed to sigining Lincoln. I forgot that FCB hated it.

dougdirt
10-05-2010, 02:13 PM
I find it ironic that saber people ask traditionalists to open their minds and once the traditionalists do, the saber guys slam their's shut.

Just because CHONE didn't see it coming doesn't mean no one could of.

It isn't because CHONE didn't see it. Or Zips. Or Marcels. Or Pecota. It is because there was no reason to expect it and there was no actual change in his skillset from 2009 to 2010. Look at the rate at which he did the things he can control from 2009 to 2010:


2009 2010
BB% 10.0% 8.2%
K% 10.3% 13.9%
IsoP .104 .131
LD% 19.1% 19.6%
GB% 49.4% 51.7%
IFH% 2.4% 8%
BABIP .274 .332

Here, we can see that the major differences are that RH struck out about 25% more than he did last year (seems larger than it is because he is a high contact player), increased his power by about 25% (again, seems larger than it is because he is a low power guy), saw his infield hit rate more than triple (going from 3 to 11) and the major thing, his average on balls in play sky rocket.

Now, looking at that, the major thing at play seems to be luck on balls in play finding the hole/landing in the grass. His underlying skillsets didn't seem to change much. Still had low power, high contact and a very similar line drive rate.

One thing I did notice though, that deserves more looking into but something I don't have the time for, is his plate discipline. Ramon expanded his zone nearly 50% more in 2010 than he did in 2009, though his rate of contact outside of the zone wasn't much better at all. However, there could be something within that data that could explain a little bit if it led to the increase in a little more power out of the bat. Again though, just a theory and I don't have time to look at all of the pitch FX data to find out. Still, even if that were the case, it shouldn't be something expected to happen as he expanded the zone quite a bit more in 2010 than he has ever done before.

dougdirt
10-05-2010, 02:15 PM
Sometimes the projection is right; othertimes, it's wildly inaccurate.

If the projection systems were reliable, there'd be no need for scouts. There'd be no need to even see the player. Just plug in his high school or college stats and let the computer give you the answer. There wouldn't even be a need for the draft.. The computer could just assign everyone their picks based on the projected value, and it would always be right.

Projection systems are just another tool to use. Finding players undervalued by projection systems (as Walt has done) is a valuable skill.

Projection systems often miss wildly on young/unproven guys. They are often very accurate on guys with 3+ MLB seasons under their belt as their 'true skill level' is often known after 1500 at bats (assuming we are talking about most guys, not the handful of 23 year olds who get that amount of at bats).

Chip R
10-05-2010, 02:22 PM
No question injuries impact careers. Is that what you want to hear? Dave Dravecky's career was certainly impacted by his left arm being amputated...

What do these examples have to do with Willie Greene?


I'm not necessarily speaking about Willie Greene. However, I would think that if a scout gets a player signed and that player makes the major leagues (as Greene did) he's done his job. How many players out of the whole universe of signed players actually make it to the Show much less play for a few years?

Now if there's a scout that continually signs players that don't make it to the major leagues, then I'd say there are problems.

But it's not just injuries either. How many good starting pitching prospects were signed by the Reds and didn't make it because the Reds couldn't develop starting pitching?

In reality, if these players don't pan out in the majors, it's not like if their original team had passed on him no one else would have drafted him. If a guy like Willie Greene hadn't been drafted by the Expos, someone else would have.

dougdirt
10-05-2010, 02:26 PM
Well, no offense, but the problem with that conclusion is that you are accepting BABIP as a fact, and not a theory.

I have trouble with the blanket statement that everyone's BABIP should be the same. When BABIP varies, it's explained as pure "luck".. that seems to be very anti-analytical, to explain a pretty big performance gap as luck.


We can get pretty analytical with BABIP if you would like. Generally, BABIP revolves around a players speed (the ability to get infield hits where others wouldn't) and a players line drive rate (where line drives go for hits 72% of the time in the majors). Ramon Hernandez has no speed at all. His line drive rate was within 0.5% of his line drive rate in 2009. His BABIP shot up 54 points.

The major difference I see is the addition of 8 infield singles that he didn't have in 2009 (where he only had 3 compared to 11 this season). If we simply remove those 8 from the equation as luck (RH had 11 infield hits in 353 PA, where as Drew Stubbs had 18 in 583.... does anyone think Ramon should have been on pace for more than Drew Stubbs?) we see RH post a line of .272/.340/.403. That line is much more in tune with what could have been expected for Hernandez in a healthy year.

Brutus
10-05-2010, 02:31 PM
Not really.

The neat thing is if one actually wishes to check how accurate these things are, they can.

It's a little bit harder than Argumentum ad hominem though but not actually that much harder.

Hasn't Tom Tango said that they're accurate to a correlation of .65-.70?

That means the very best projection systems only explain 49% or half the variance from year to year. Statistically speaking, that's significant. Practically speaking, it's only half the battle.

If I'm sending you some place 500 miles away, wouldn't you need me to narrow down where you're going a little better than 250 miles into the journey to be considered good directions?

dougdirt
10-05-2010, 02:33 PM
Hasn't Tom Tango said that they're accurate to a correlation of .65-.70?

That means the very best projection systems only explain 49% or half the variance from year to year. Statistically speaking, that's significant. Practically speaking, it's only half the battle.

If I'm sending you some place 500 miles away, wouldn't you need me to narrow down where you're going a little better than 250 miles into the journey to be considered good directions?

I would be curious to see how accurate they are on players with at least 1500 MLB at bats. Toss out pitchers and young players as injuries and just the unknown of young players skew things, especially to this topic at hand concerning a 34 year old 12 year vet.

Sea Ray
10-05-2010, 02:35 PM
I'm not necessarily speaking about Willie Greene. However, I would think that if a scout gets a player signed and that player makes the major leagues (as Greene did) he's done his job. How many players out of the whole universe of signed players actually make it to the Show much less play for a few years?

Now if there's a scout that continually signs players that don't make it to the major leagues, then I'd say there are problems.

But it's not just injuries either. How many good starting pitching prospects were signed by the Reds and didn't make it because the Reds couldn't develop starting pitching?

In reality, if these players don't pan out in the majors, it's not like if their original team had passed on him no one else would have drafted him. If a guy like Willie Greene hadn't been drafted by the Expos, someone else would have.

I agree, a scout who signs young players, is doing his job if they make the majors.

However a GM's job is different. He needs to project how well a player will do in his major league career and Bowden missed the boat. He over estimated Greene and it cost us when he traded John Wetteland to acquire Willie.

Brutus
10-05-2010, 02:38 PM
I would be curious to see how accurate they are on players with at least 1500 MLB at bats. Toss out pitchers and young players as injuries and just the unknown of young players skew things, especially to this topic at hand concerning a 34 year old 12 year vet.

I don't doubt there are going to be slightly better results with veterans that have more data, but even with those players we might only get to 60% variance explained.

I'm just repeating what Tom has said. He's done a lot more research on this topic than I have, but I know he specifically said a year or two ago that he doesn't think we'll get past the .7 barrier for a while no matter how hard we try because (paraphrasing) "there are just too many unknown variables we can't account for."

And this is coming from a guy who runs one of those very popular projection systems.

It seems when you have someone who has run the testing, has pioneered one of these popular projection formulas cautioning us that there are still some unpredictable variables we can't account for that will keep us maxed out in our correlation, I think people should slow down with using them as too strong of indicators.

They give us a good ballpark estimate. But at the end of the day, that's what separates this from simulations and playing the games on the field.

MattyHo4Life
10-05-2010, 02:42 PM
http://www.fungoes.net/2010/10/01/reds-title-doesnt-validate-jockettys-system/



Basically, the guy is saying it was what was in place and not anything Walt Jocketty really did.


I wouldn't say this guy is completely wrong, but he isn't completely right either. Did Jocketty inherit a lot of good telented young players. Of course he did. Would the Reds have won the NL Central in 2010 if Jocketty wasn't the GM, and didn't make the moves that he made? I doubt it!

jojo
10-05-2010, 02:55 PM
Well, no offense, but the problem with that conclusion is that you are accepting BABIP as a fact, and not a theory.

I have trouble with the blanket statement that everyone's BABIP should be the same. When BABIP varies, it's explained as pure "luck".. that seems to be very anti-analytical, to explain a pretty big performance gap as luck.

First no one is saying that all hitters should have the same BABIP. Clearly they don't as fleet-footed players often sustain BABIPs greater than the typical .290-.310 range while slow-footed players can have sustainably lower ones.

It stead of supposing something is anti-analytical, why not take a look see? For his career, RH has a BABIP of .278 and he's really had very little deviation from that number year in and year out. This year he posted a BABIP a full 54 points higher than expected. He's not faster. He didn't hit more line drives.

Pointing to a large "lucky" (i.e. random) jump in BABIP as an explanation for a large unexpected jump in performance seems much more plausible than suggesting a 34 year old catcher suddenly increased his true skill.


Instead, maybe BABIP is a useless stat, or perhaps we don't fully understand it?

See above.


Ramon exceeded what the projection systems said he would do.. To write that off as dumb luck is insulting to him and Walt.

No it's not. It's actually using an open, analytical mind to explain the result.


Will Ramon repeat his performance next year? I don't know.. At this point, I am more worried about the playoffs. Freel for Hernandez was an awesome trade.

Freel for Hernandez was an increase in payroll for something useful that ultimately wasn't all that productive.

Resigning him as potatoes and getting free gravy too is something that only happens mostly during surprise parties.

Sea Ray
10-05-2010, 02:59 PM
First no one is saying that all hitters should have the same BABIP. Clearly they don't as fleet-footed players often sustain BABIPs greater than the typical .290-.310 range while slow-footed players can have sustainably lower ones.



Sometimes speed has nothing to do with it. Sometimes good hitters just tend to hit the ball better. See Manny Ramirez and his BABip of .335

jojo
10-05-2010, 03:03 PM
Sometimes the projection is right; othertimes, it's wildly inaccurate.

If the projection systems were reliable, there'd be no need for scouts. There'd be no need to even see the player. Just plug in his high school or college stats and let the computer give you the answer. There wouldn't even be a need for the draft.. The computer could just assign everyone their picks based on the projected value, and it would always be right.

Projection systems are just another tool to use. Finding players undervalued by projection systems (as Walt has done) is a valuable skill.

RH wasn't an undervalued player. And projection systems certainly didnt undervalue him.

The argument is simply this straightforward- some very useful tools suggest that RH produced at an unrepeatable level and looking at his peripherals a couple of unrepeatable jumps stick out as obvious reasons why. Projection systems are at least offering something tangible to the discussion of what is known about RH's true skill. And they allow an argument that is strong and logical and devoid of bias.

jojo
10-05-2010, 03:05 PM
Sometimes speed has nothing to do with it. Sometimes good hitters just tend to hit the ball better. See Manny Ramirez and his BABip of .335

I didn't say speed was the only reason. Manny also has a career LD% of 23%

REDREAD
10-05-2010, 03:06 PM
If we simply remove those 8 from the equation as luck (RH had 11 infield hits in 353 PA, where as Drew Stubbs had 18 in 583.... does anyone think Ramon should have been on pace for more than Drew Stubbs?) we see RH post a line of .272/.340/.403. That line is much more in tune with what could have been expected for Hernandez in a healthy year.

I am trying to make sure I understand what you are saying correctly.

So, Ramon Hernandez had a much better year than expected, due to 8 infield hits? That's what all this handwringing was about? Just 8 hits turned Ramon into an "exceeds expectations" player?

bucksfan2
10-05-2010, 03:09 PM
Freel for Hernandez was an increase in payroll for something useful that ultimately wasn't all that productive.

Resigning him as potatoes and getting free gravy too is something that only happens mostly during surprise parties.

Say what? Hernandez wasn't all that productive? The combo of Hernandez and Hanigan was one of the best catching duo in the NL. I find that statement hard to believe.

TheNext44
10-05-2010, 03:09 PM
No it's not. It's actually using an open, analytical mind to explain the result.

Freel for Hernandez was an increase in payroll for something useful that ultimately wasn't all that productive.

Resigning him as potatoes and getting free gravy too is something that only happens mostly during surprise parties.


1) A truly open, analytic mind would base his decision on more than just stats, especially when the stats have historically only told part of the picture. By only using stats you are assuming to be true what you are trying to prove.

2) It was small increase, given Freel's contract, and if you factor in defense, it was productive, especially when the Reds needed a catcher to split time with Hanigan. Remember that Hernandez had surgery at the end of the end of the season, so his 2009 stats are incomplete.

3) He was not resigned. He had an option, which technically was picked up and then his contract renegotiated. Considering the above mentioned surgery, and how fast it happened, an analytic, open mind should conclude that keeping Hernandez for two years was always the plan.

Seems like a shrewd move. Get rid of an overpriced, redundant, player with negative value, and in return get a valuable, reasonably priced, needed player for the next two years. I would argue that even if Hernandez repeated his 2009 production in 2010, that this was a smart move by Jocketty.

dougdirt
10-05-2010, 03:12 PM
And this is coming from a guy who runs one of those very popular projection systems.

It seems when you have someone who has run the testing, has pioneered one of these popular projection formulas cautioning us that there are still some unpredictable variables we can't account for that will keep us maxed out in our correlation, I think people should slow down with using them as too strong of indicators.

We generally can account for it though. It isn't always just in the numbers. Sometimes it can be explained by scouting as well. The thing that is at hand though is why did Ramon Hernandez perform better in 2010 than in 2009 and is that reason something that anyone should have been able to see coming. Two things stick out to me, his infield hit rate (which accounted for 8 extra hits compared to 2009) and his expansion of the strikezone compared to what he has done in his past. The infield hit rate is pure luck. The guy doesn't have anything remotely close to even average speed. Those extra 8 hits alone set his baseline down to a .742 OPS by taking them out. Is that the reason his season was much better than expected? Or was it something else? If it was something else, then what was it and why should someone have had a reason to believe that it was going to happen?

REDREAD
10-05-2010, 03:13 PM
It stead of supposing something is anti-analytical, why not take a look see? For his career, RH has a BABIP of .278 and he's really had very little deviation from that number year in and year out. This year he posted a BABIP a full 54 points higher than expected. He's not faster. He didn't hit more line drives.

Pointing to a large "lucky" (i.e. random) jump in BABIP as an explanation for a large unexpected jump in performance seems much more plausible than suggesting a 34 year old catcher suddenly increased his true skill.
.

As Doug said, he increased his power.. Maybe that means he was hitting the ball harder this year.. I can't explain why, but the results don't lie. He had a better season this year. Maybe he was healthier. Maybe less playing time made him fresher. I can't give you the exact reason, but I'm not going to shrug it off as random luck either.

BABIP covers a lot of stuff.. The case was made for awhile that all pitchers and hitters should have about the same BABIP. I see now, that the theory has been a little bit more refined now.. Faster hitters are now allowed to have a high BABIP without being called lucky.. That was not part of the BABIP theory a couple years ago. I imagine in time, the will say that better hitters are allowed to have a higher BABIP too. I'm guessing that eventually they will concede that someone like Ramon Hernandez can have a good set of 350 ABs in one year, just because he's performing better. He might drop off next year, but this year, he was great.

dougdirt
10-05-2010, 03:14 PM
I am trying to make sure I understand what you are saying correctly.

So, Ramon Hernandez had a much better year than expected, due to 8 infield hits? That's what all this handwringing was about? Just 8 hits turned Ramon into an "exceeds expectations" player?

8 singles over 55% of a season was worth 24 points of OBP and 26 points of SLG, for a total of 50 points of OPS. A 50 point boost in OPS is pretty significant, no?

REDREAD
10-05-2010, 03:15 PM
RH wasn't an undervalued player. And projection systems certainly didnt undervalue him.
.

He clearly outperformed his projection for this year. That means he was undervalued by it. Of course, I'm not going to guarantee that he can repeat it next year. I'll let Walt worry about that.

dougdirt
10-05-2010, 03:18 PM
As Doug said, he increased his power.. Maybe that means he was hitting the ball harder this year.. I can't explain why, but the results don't lie. He had a better season this year. Maybe he was healthier. Maybe less playing time made him fresher. I can't give you the exact reason, but I'm not going to shrug it off as random luck either.

BABIP covers a lot of stuff.. The case was made for awhile that all pitchers and hitters should have about the same BABIP. I see now, that the theory has been a little bit more refined now.. Faster hitters are now allowed to have a high BABIP without being called lucky.. That was not part of the BABIP theory a couple years ago. I imagine in time, the will say that better hitters are allowed to have a higher BABIP too. I'm guessing that eventually they will concede that someone like Ramon Hernandez can have a good set of 350 ABs in one year, just because he's performing better. He might drop off next year, but this year, he was great.

Hitters have a much higher rate of control over their BABIP than pitchers do from year to year. However, it generally correlates to things we can measure and say "oh, he hit more line drives this year and that is why his BABIP went up". In this case, 30 points of Ramon Hernandez's BABIP is a direct result of 8 additional infield singles that he didn't have last year. Those aren't a result of an improved skill. Those are a direct result of luck.

Now, the other 20 points or so that he increased may have been due to the additional power that he had this year compared to last, though I don't fully buy into that because his career BABIP is .278 and he certainly didn't hit for more power in 2010 than other times in his career when his BABIP was indeed much lower than the .300 he would be at by simply removing those 8 extra infield singles.

NJReds
10-05-2010, 03:26 PM
I wouldn't say this guy is completely wrong, but he isn't completely right either. Did Jocketty inherit a lot of good telented young players. Of course he did. Would the Reds have won the NL Central in 2010 if Jocketty wasn't the GM, and didn't make the moves that he made? I doubt it!

Agreed, and I think that the column is somewhat misguided for looking at each move in a vacuum.

Adding players like Rolen, Cabrera, Rhodes and even Cairo brought a level of veteran leadership to the clubhouse that I don't think you can measure through on-field statistics. Don't sleep on the Edmonds move late in the season, either. Even when he wasn't playing, Edmonds was on the bench parked next to Bruce and/or Stubbs apparently giving advice.

Jocketty inherited some great pieces, but he did a solid job, IMO, in adding a few complementary pieces that helped build a team that could win. Dusty derserves equal praise for holding everything together.

One question about the Ramon Hernandez stats: Could his increased BABIP somehow be related to the fact that he basically split time with Hanigan, thus he was better rested when he played than in the past? Just a thought.

Brutus
10-05-2010, 03:29 PM
We generally can account for it though. It isn't always just in the numbers. Sometimes it can be explained by scouting as well. The thing that is at hand though is why did Ramon Hernandez perform better in 2010 than in 2009 and is that reason something that anyone should have been able to see coming. Two things stick out to me, his infield hit rate (which accounted for 8 extra hits compared to 2009) and his expansion of the strikezone compared to what he has done in his past. The infield hit rate is pure luck. The guy doesn't have anything remotely close to even average speed. Those extra 8 hits alone set his baseline down to a .742 OPS by taking them out. Is that the reason his season was much better than expected? Or was it something else? If it was something else, then what was it and why should someone have had a reason to believe that it was going to happen?

But jojo is debating that it's accounted for in the wOBA projection. The point that I was responding to is that wOBA is the measure of "true skill" and for something that, on the high end, only explains 49% of the variance doesn't seem to fit that definition.

It seems like having a cake and eating it too rationale. On one hand, the projection should have explained what Hernandez was going to do this year. When it didn't, others are arguing that scouting and other things a GM looks at when analyzing a player, may have caused Jocketty to see/expect something that wasn't within that 49% variation of the projection systems. And then when it happened, the argument reverts back to the "luck" of the stats that caused the variance.

I hope you can see how it's kind of a contradictory argument.

What you say may have been the primary reason for his unexpected surge. But to me, that just goes to show that the difference between a .310 and .350 wOBA is very minimal in the grand scheme of things. If we're pinning it down to a few more infield hits over the course of the season, then perhaps we shouldn't be pigeonholing true talent based on a tentative projection. And that was my point more than anything.

I'm not arguing what Ramon should or shouldn't have done, and what may have caused what he did or didn't do. I'm saying that there's a problem basing those expectations too much on a few projected stats to begin with.

You say scouting is also part of the equation. I totally 100% agree with you. But that was the point I was making to begin this conversation, that wOBA is nowhere near a complete tool to judge true talent.

So if 50% of Jocketty's analysis said .310 for Ramon and 50% of his scouting feedback said .330 for Ramon... maybe he wasn't expecting .350, but his scouting/intangibles hunch had it much closer to the truth for 2010.

Since wOBA has about a 49% variance, that's another half we have to assume lies within the scouting elements of the game.

TRF
10-05-2010, 03:55 PM
10 pages on Walt's system and three mentions of the GM most responsible for his success in Cincinnati: Wayne Krivsky.

For all my bashing of Stubbs, Krivsky signed him. The Latin American excursion that netted the Reds Chapman likely started with WK's signing of Juan Duran. Sure DanO was there for Cueto, but that was for peanuts. The first big money LA signing was Duran. Walt may have had a hand in that as well. Arroyo. Phillips. Volquez. That depth everyone keeps talking about? Mostly Krivsky. Burton. DRH. I thoroughly bashed "The Trade" as I thought WK should have gotten more, like I bashed the trade for Rolen as I thought the Reds paid too much. And I was wrong on both. (BTW, REDREAD, the reason Stewart is being told to be prepared to pitch in relief is because that Toronto rotation is young and uber talented.)

It's funny. The Reds best player was acquired by JimBo. 2/5 of the rotation is DanO, 2/5 WK. Wood, DanO. LeCure and Maloney, WK.

Let's not forget that JimBo and Co. (Lindner and Allen) left the Reds a barren farm. DanO had a very good 2004-2005 draft. WK had what is turning into a very good 2006-07 draft. (Can't wait to see Mesoraco at AAA in 2011)

DanO was a disaster overall as a GM, but he infused a lot of talent into the system. WK infused even more trading crap for guys with actual use, taking flyers on guys like David Ross. He had to completely rebuild a horrible rotation while saddled with Milton and Griffey's contracts. Can anyone name a prospect of note that WK gave up to improve the club? And yes, WK improved this team from top to bottom.

jojo
10-05-2010, 03:59 PM
Say what? Hernandez wasn't all that productive? The combo of Hernandez and Hanigan was one of the best catching duo in the NL. I find that statement hard to believe.

RH's 2010 wasn't part of the trade.

Sea Ray
10-05-2010, 04:03 PM
I didn't say speed was the only reason. Manny also has a career LD% of 23%

Exactly. Good hitters tend to hit a lot of balls hard. Funny how that works

Sea Ray
10-05-2010, 04:04 PM
RH's 2010 wasn't part of the trade.

2009 RH was worth Freel

edabbs44
10-05-2010, 04:05 PM
I'll take WK as a supplementary part of my FO. Not as the #1 guy. He brought some talent in but also wasted millions of dollars in the process. Keep him as an advisor and we are good.

Sea Ray
10-05-2010, 04:06 PM
I'll take WK as a supplementary part of my FO. Not as the #1 guy. He brought some talent in but also wasted millions of dollars in the process. Keep him as an advisor and we are good.

Right and I'd say the same about O'Brien

bucksfan2
10-05-2010, 04:09 PM
RH's 2010 wasn't part of the trade.

Without the trade RH in all likelihood isn't a Red in 2010.

jojo
10-05-2010, 04:09 PM
1) A truly open, analytic mind would base his decision on more than just stats, especially when the stats have historically only told part of the picture. By only using stats you are assuming to be true what you are trying to prove.

If you're going to ad hominem an approach, offer a credible alternative to explain his jump in production that is more compelling than the unrepeatable effects of an unexpected bump in BABIP.

jojo
10-05-2010, 04:12 PM
Exactly. Good hitters tend to hit a lot of balls hard. Funny how that works

So a guy who has a career BABIP that is significantly lower than the major league average isn't likely a good hitter?

jojo
10-05-2010, 04:16 PM
It seems when you have someone who has run the testing, has pioneered one of these popular projection formulas cautioning us that there are still some unpredictable variables we can't account for that will keep us maxed out in our correlation, I think people should slow down with using them as too strong of indicators.

By this standard, scouting should NEVER be evoked as an estimate of true talent then. Absolutely never. BTW, you know what medicine calls a correlation of .70+ in the messy thing called biology? A cure.


They give us a good ballpark estimate. But at the end of the day, that's what separates this from simulations and playing the games on the field.

They aren't perfect but they provide the best answer we've got for these discussions. And since many are evoking absolutism, that's absolutely the point.

Brutus
10-05-2010, 04:27 PM
By this standard, scouting should NEVER be evoked as an estimate of true talent then. Absolutely never.



They aren't perfect but they provide the best answer we've got for these discussions. And since many are evoking absolutism, that's absolutely the point.

Right, they're not perfect, but you still haven't answered how anyone can mistakenly define them as a measure of "true talent" when the best ones can only explain away half of the variance from year to year. That was your own statement on those projections.

No projections, stats, scouting or otherwise, should be a measure of true talent. That was the point all along. A projection is just that -- projecting what a player might do. That's not talent. That's guesswork. Estimated guesswork based off past results, but still guesswork. What Ramon has done over his career, not what one system manipulates what he might do going forward, is what his talent is.

Talent is what you actually do and have the ability to do. In this case, Ramon has previously shown the ability to hit .350. And he did so in multiple seasons, so it stands to reason that his true talent is that of a guy that can do what he did this year. It doesn't mean it was a statistical probability, but that it's ignorant to say the talent isn't there to do something that he's done before and done consistently.

I would argue the purpose of scouting is to identify what a player is capable of, as well as what he might do. A statistical projection ignores what a player is capable of and focuses on what he might do. To me, it's unwise not to use both, but it's even more unwise to use either as a true model of "talent."

jojo
10-05-2010, 04:40 PM
Right, they're not perfect, but you still haven't answered how anyone can mistakenly define them as a measure of "true talent" when the best ones can only explain away half of the variance from year to year. That was your own statement on those projections.

No projections, stats, scouting or otherwise, should be a measure of true talent. That was the point all along. A projection is just that -- projecting what a player might do. That's not talent. That's guesswork. Estimated guesswork based off past results, but still guesswork. What Ramon has done over his career, not what one system manipulates what he might do going forward, is what his talent is.

Talent is what you actually do and have the ability to do. In this case, Ramon has previously shown the ability to hit .350. And he did so in multiple seasons, so it stands to reason that his true talent is that of a guy that can do what he did this year. It doesn't mean it was a statistical probability, but that it's ignorant to say the talent isn't there to do something that he's done before and done consistently.

I would argue the purpose of scouting is to identify what a player is capable of, as well as what he might do. A statistical projection ignores what a player is capable of and focuses on what he might do. To me, it's unwise not to use both, but it's even more unwise to use either as a true model of "talent."

A projection from a system like the ones we're talking about are essentially estimates of true talent-they're largely predicated on modeling just that.

There is nothing in his history that suggests a consistent true talent equal to a wOBA=.350. RH, last had a wOBA in .350 in 2006 and he's only done it one other time before that. After 3 seasons of a wOBA =.313, it's not ignorant to suggest a 34 year old catcher isn't defined by what he did 4 years ago anymore than it wasn't ignorant to argue the Jr wasn't a legit DH this year.


A statistical projection ignores what a player is capable of and focuses on what he might do. To me, it's unwise not to use both, but it's even more unwise to use either as a true model of "talent."

How can one arrive at what a player might do by ignoring what he is capable of? I'm totally confused by that characterization especially since projection systems rely heavily on what a player has done in the past.

I'm not arguing that there isn't role for scouting-anyone who wants to keep profiting that red herring should read my signature please. Please.

That said, for the purposes of this discussion, how exactly is scouting being used to inform RH's 2010? Also, sabermetrics provides a very plausible, simple and compelling explanation. How does scouting refute it in this instance?

Brutus
10-05-2010, 04:45 PM
A projection from a system like the ones we're talking about are essentially estimates of true talent-they're largely predicated on modeling just that.

There is nothing in his history that suggests a consistent true talent equal to a wOBA=.350. RH, last had a wOBA in .350 in 2006 and he's only done it one other time before that. After 3 seasons of a wOBA =.313, it's not ignorant to suggest a 34 year old catcher isn't defined by what he did 4 years ago anymore than it wasn't ignorant to argue the Jr wasn't a legit DH this year.



How can one arrive at what a player might do by ignoring what he is capable of? I'm totally confused by that characterization especially since projection systems rely heavily on what a player has done in the past.

I'm not arguing that there isn't role for scouting-anyone who wants to keep profiting that red herring should read my signature please. Please.

That said, for the purposes of this discussion, how exactly is scouting being used to inform RH's 2010? Also, sabermetrics provides a very plausible, simple and compelling explanation. How does scouting refute it in this instance?

He has four seasons of .330 to .350. Isn't it ignoring what he's capable of to not consider that when labeling "true talent?"

Most projection systems only look at 3 years worth of data, which for a veteran of several seasons, can be shortsighted. Second, they don't look at all of the important peripheral factors that go into those 3 seasons, much less consider the intangible aspects of the game, playing injured, etc.

To refer to your medical analogy, if something that is expected to work only half the time is a "cure," pardon me if I go look for another doctor :)

I don't think I've ever heard anyone in the medical/scientific community refer to an r2 of .49 as a "cure."

Sea Ray
10-05-2010, 04:55 PM
So a guy who has a career BABIP that is significantly lower than the major league average isn't likely a good hitter?

I don't use that stat to come to my conclusions. There could be all kinds of reasons

REDREAD
10-05-2010, 04:56 PM
Hitters have a much higher rate of control over their BABIP than pitchers do from year to year. However, it generally correlates to things we can measure and say "oh, he hit more line drives this year and that is why his BABIP went up". In this case, 30 points of Ramon Hernandez's BABIP is a direct result of 8 additional infield singles that he didn't have last year. Those aren't a result of an improved skill. Those are a direct result of luck.

Now, the other 20 points or so that he increased may have been due to the additional power that he had this year compared to last, though I don't fully buy into that because his career BABIP is .278 and he certainly didn't hit for more power in 2010 than other times in his career when his BABIP was indeed much lower than the .300 he would be at by simply removing those 8 extra infield singles.

Ok, thanks for explaning.. I guess I am suspicious of a system outlined above.
From what I know from previous BABIP discussions, 30 points is significant.
If 8 hits/year (regardless of whether they are infield or not) makes such a significant difference, I really have to question the whole system.

I mean, especially in a guy like Hernandez, who plays about 1/2 the games.
He could easily get lucky by getting to face Josh Fogg in three of his starts instead of an ace pitcher.. Or get a few pinch hit appearances vs awful relievers.. I guess I don't think 8 hits over an entire year should be significant, but it seems to make BAPIP fluctate quite a bit.

dougdirt
10-05-2010, 05:11 PM
Ok, thanks for explaning.. I guess I am suspicious of a system outlined above.
From what I know from previous BABIP discussions, 30 points is significant.
If 8 hits/year (regardless of whether they are infield or not) makes such a significant difference, I really have to question the whole system.

I mean, especially in a guy like Hernandez, who plays about 1/2 the games.
He could easily get lucky by getting to face Josh Fogg in three of his starts instead of an ace pitcher.. Or get a few pinch hit appearances vs awful relievers.. I guess I don't think 8 hits over an entire year should be significant, but it seems to make BAPIP fluctate quite a bit.
Well the key of course is that RH didn't play a full season, so small things are going to make a larger difference. But facing Josh Fogg in 3 starts isn't gonig to explain 8 more infield singles.

RH only had 260 balls in play this year, so 8 plays a lot more in there than if he had say, 460 balls in play this year. Had he had 460, 8 hits would only make a 17 point difference. But over just 260, it makes a 31 point difference. Really though, it isn't that its 8 hits at hand, which could be explained by facing a guy like Fogg a few times in the season, but since we are talking about 8 infield hits, it isn't a result of some bad pitching, its a result of pure luck (on those 8 extra hits of course - not the other 6 or so that make up the rest of the difference between his 2010 BABIP and his career BABIP).

jojo
10-05-2010, 05:26 PM
Ok, thanks for explaning.. I guess I am suspicious of a system outlined above.
From what I know from previous BABIP discussions, 30 points is significant.
If 8 hits/year (regardless of whether they are infield or not) makes such a significant difference, I really have to question the whole system.

I mean, especially in a guy like Hernandez, who plays about 1/2 the games.
He could easily get lucky by getting to face Josh Fogg in three of his starts instead of an ace pitcher.. Or get a few pinch hit appearances vs awful relievers.. I guess I don't think 8 hits over an entire year should be significant, but it seems to make BAPIP fluctate quite a bit.

Eight fewer hits would lower his batting average from .297 to .272. Assuming they were all singles, it would lower his SLG from .428 to .402 and his OBP from .363 to .341. Or in other words, those 8 singles would mean .048 worth of OPS.

Or it takes his wOBA of .350 down to .329.

These are all in line with the hypothetical effect on his BABIP and keep in mind this is assuming all 8 hits were merely singles.

jojo
10-05-2010, 05:37 PM
He has four seasons of .330 to .350. Isn't it ignoring what he's capable of to not consider that when labeling "true talent?"


RH's BABIP uncharacteristically 50 pts higher than his career average. Why was that? Was it something he could control? If so why hasn't he ever had a BABIP over .300 before?

BTW, it's not ignoring what he's capable of...it's removing the effects of randomness to better understand what he's capable of consistently producing.

Brutus
10-05-2010, 06:14 PM
RH's BABIP uncharacteristically 50 pts higher than his career average. Why was that? Was it something he could control? If so why hasn't he ever had a BABIP over .300 before?

BTW, it's not ignoring what he's capable of...it's removing the effects of randomness to better understand what he's capable of consistently producing.

But those previous four seasons of .330-.350 he had in a row were done without benefit of the BABIP breaking .300. So it seems we can't explain this year away solely by BABIP.

I asked you earlier if it should diminish the point if the organization expected a .330 wOBA this year. You said, "they shouldn't have expected that."

But in this thread, you said if you take away those 8 infield singles or whatever, his his wOBA would have been somewhere around .330 this year.

So doesn't that show that he was capable of having that kind of season, even without the benefit of some lucky bounces?

I'm not saying his true ability is that of a .350 player. I certainly don't think it was very reasonable to have that high of expectations for him this season. But even if a club expected 10-20 points lower, that still is something that has been done by him enough to think it was possible and also worth crediting if in fact they expected it.

jojo
10-05-2010, 06:24 PM
But those previous four seasons of .330-.350 he had in a row were done without benefit of the BABIP breaking .300. So it seems we can't explain this year away solely by BABIP.

Those were also four years ago-a lifetime for a catcher.


I asked you earlier if it should diminish the point if the organization expected a .330 wOBA this year. You said, "they shouldn't have expected that."

But in this thread, you said if you take away those 8 infield singles or whatever, his his wOBA would have been somewhere around .330 this year.

So doesn't that show that he was capable of having that kind of season, even without the benefit of some lucky bounces?

I'm not saying his true ability is that of a .350 player. I certainly don't think it was very reasonable to have that high of expectations for him this season. But even if a club expected 10-20 points lower, that still is something that has been done by him enough to think it was possible and also worth crediting if in fact they expected it.

RH dramatically outperformed what any reasonable expectation of him should have been. I guess if he had only decently outperformed reasonable expectations, it wouldn't have been as unreasonable of an expectation. The difference between his projection and your hypothetical would be roughly 3.5 runs.

Scrap Irony
10-05-2010, 07:59 PM
What does it matter if Hernandez was lucky? What matters is results, yes? I don't care if Jocketty practices voodoo and worships an old picture of David Tennant as Dr. Who.

What I care about is whether he makes the Reds a better team.

Hernandez was a large part of the second-best offensive tandem in baseball. Add in the positive impact of both his and Manigan's gloves and you could argue the Reds had the best catching tandem in the game.

Jocketty did well-- no amount of amortizing numbers through something as amorphous as BaBIP or "likely projections" will change the fact that Hernandez was an astute and valuable pick-up.

I don't care what his numbers are likely to project to later on. I care how he helped the team in 2010. (We can discuss projections when Jocketty puts the team together for 2011; that's the only time they really make sense anyway.)

To insist that no one should receive credit for guessing right is patently ridiculous. Didn't you receive credit for guessing right in high school? It counted the exact same as did the ones you were certain on. Same with the ACT. Same with guesses in college.

In fact, all projections are informed guesses. Jocketty has more information at his disposal than do any of us. Why should he be dinged because he didn't happen to use the same way to get there as you would have, jojo?

He got there. He's been there before. Based on his track record, he'll likely be there in the future.

It seems to me, if a guy has the success Jocketty has had over his career, I'd want to find out how he gets so lucky so often rather than disregard those guesses that determine division crowns from also-rans as random bits of flotsam that can be poo-poohed in favor of other systems.

lollipopcurve
10-05-2010, 08:20 PM
Jocketty did well-- no amount of amortizing numbers through something as amorphous as BaBIP or "likely projections" will change the fact that Hernandez was an astute and valuable pick-up.

Could not agree more. Credit also to Baker for his handling of the catching duo.

dougdirt
10-05-2010, 08:37 PM
What does it matter if Hernandez was lucky? What matters is results, yes? I don't care if Jocketty practices voodoo and worships an old picture of David Tennant as Dr. Who.

What I care about is whether he makes the Reds a better team.

It matters because you can't continue to just get lucky and continue to make the team better.

edabbs44
10-05-2010, 08:42 PM
It matters because you can't continue to just get lucky and continue to make the team better.

Jocketty is not getting lucky. The only people who believe that he is getting lucky are those who only have access to statistics and use stats as the majority of what to base their assumptions on.

There is more to this game than statistics. Open your minds. ;)

dougdirt
10-05-2010, 08:57 PM
Jocketty is not getting lucky. The only people who believe that he is getting lucky are those who only have access to statistics and use stats as the majority of what to base their assumptions on.

There is more to this game than statistics. Open your minds. ;)

Let me preface this by saying that I don't think Jocketty has just been getting lucky for 20+ years now. Just that with the exact thing I quoted, you can't hope someone gets lucky and continue to improve the team.

Well there is certainly an argument to be made that it goes both ways. Guys get lucky and unlucky all the time. Making a good signing, then a guy blows his knee out, its unlucky.

With Hernandez, I would say that nearly 50 points of his 2010 OPS is purely based on luck. Sorry, but nothing in Ramon Hernadez body or skillset should have had him on pace for 3 more infield hits in the same playing time as Drew Stubbs. Where the rest of the boost came from, I am all for listening to plenty of arguments, I even made a few myself as to where they came from.... but a nice chunk of his boost this past season was because of 8 additional infield singles that he had this year that he didn't have last year.

Scrap Irony
10-05-2010, 09:00 PM
It matters because you can't continue to just get lucky and continue to make the team better.

Yet, Jocketty has done just that throughout his career as a GM.

If you believe that all Jocketty has done is get lucky, that is.

dougdirt
10-05-2010, 09:06 PM
Yet, Jocketty has done just that throughout his career as a GM.

If you believe that all Jocketty has done is get lucky, that is.

Of course no one believes that. I was simply responding to the 'why would I care if a guy gets lucky if the player turns out to produce' comment.

Scrap Irony
10-05-2010, 09:11 PM
Answer me this, doug: did Hernandez make the Reds a better team in 2010?

If the answer is yes (and I honestly don't see how the answer could be anything but affirmative) and you've already said his season was lucky, wouldn't those be considered opposing views?

You can't have it both ways, dude.

edabbs44
10-05-2010, 09:19 PM
Let me preface this by saying that I don't think Jocketty has just been getting lucky for 20+ years now. Just that with the exact thing I quoted, you can't hope someone gets lucky and continue to improve the team.

Well there is certainly an argument to be made that it goes both ways. Guys get lucky and unlucky all the time. Making a good signing, then a guy blows his knee out, its unlucky.

With Hernandez, I would say that nearly 50 points of his 2010 OPS is purely based on luck. Sorry, but nothing in Ramon Hernadez body or skillset should have had him on pace for 3 more infield hits in the same playing time as Drew Stubbs. Where the rest of the boost came from, I am all for listening to plenty of arguments, I even made a few myself as to where they came from.... but a nice chunk of his boost this past season was because of 8 additional infield singles that he had this year that he didn't have last year.

The part I think that is flawed is the breaking down of each move on a miniscule level and trying to prove/disprove anything with that method.

kaldaniels
10-05-2010, 09:35 PM
This is sad. Why are some trying to beat down Ramon's nice year in order to push your agenda. Some have come to the forgone conclusion that Walt is a rube of a GM and will try any means necessary to cut him down.

For those knocking RH or calling him lucky....in a single sentence what point are you trying to make? Just like some say with UZR...production is production....you can't just dismiss it.

westofyou
10-05-2010, 09:55 PM
"Luck is the residue of opportunity and design."

Branch Rickey

Brutus
10-05-2010, 09:58 PM
"Luck is the residue of opportunity and design."

Branch Rickey

"Sometimes we gotta make our own luck,"

--gramma 'Pimp

dougdirt
10-06-2010, 12:15 AM
Answer me this, doug: did Hernandez make the Reds a better team in 2010?

If the answer is yes (and I honestly don't see how the answer could be anything but affirmative) and you've already said his season was lucky, wouldn't those be considered opposing views?

You can't have it both ways, dude.
Absolutely can have it both ways. Simply being lucky doesn't mean one wasn't good. It means that one was better than expected.

Ramon Hernandez helped the Reds this year. His season should be considered lucky because of the reasons I have laid out in this thread.

Brutus
10-06-2010, 12:41 AM
Absolutely can have it both ways. Simply being lucky doesn't mean one wasn't good. It means that one was better than expected.

Ramon Hernandez helped the Reds this year. His season should be considered lucky because of the reasons I have laid out in this thread.

FWIW, his xBABIP is around .310. So he wasn't incredibly lucky by any means.

dougdirt
10-06-2010, 12:44 AM
FWIW, his xBABIP is around .310. So he wasn't incredibly lucky by any means.

That essentially takes away 6/7 of his 11 infield singles though, and costs him 40 points or so of OPS. My main contention is that its the incredible rate at which he had infield singles that made him lucky. His xBABIP places him in the range that makes sense for taking away a lot of those.

Brutus
10-06-2010, 01:37 AM
That essentially takes away 6/7 of his 11 infield singles though, and costs him 40 points or so of OPS. My main contention is that its the incredible rate at which he had infield singles that made him lucky. His xBABIP places him in the range that makes sense for taking away a lot of those.

It still puts him around .330 and is not an unreasonable expectation to have held for him this season.

Either way, I get the point you're making, and I'm not saying it's wrong by any means, but it comes across as diminishing an organizational decision that turned out well no matter how we expected it to turn out. It seems like nitpicking at this or that being lucky in order to justify a failed projection.

Projections are full of errors. If everything were easily predictable, there would be no sense in playing the games. That's frankly the beauty of sports--the unpredictable nature of competition.

The fact of the matter is that Walt Jocketty's job is to make decisions he feels will positively impact the club. He felt Ramon Hernandez would be a positive contributor in 2010, so he kept him around and it turned out to be a strong decision. This is a results-oriented business and you can't avoid a little luck no matter how hard you try. So it seems silly to worry whether or not someone was 'lucky' to have 5-7 more infield singles in a season.

dougdirt
10-06-2010, 02:02 AM
It still puts him around .330 and is not an unreasonable expectation to have held for him this season.

Either way, I get the point you're making, and I'm not saying it's wrong by any means, but it comes across as diminishing an organizational decision that turned out well no matter how we expected it to turn out. It seems like nitpicking at this or that being lucky in order to justify a failed projection.

Projections are full of errors. If everything were easily predictable, there would be no sense in playing the games. That's frankly the beauty of sports--the unpredictable nature of competition.

The fact of the matter is that Walt Jocketty's job is to make decisions he feels will positively impact the club. He felt Ramon Hernandez would be a positive contributor in 2010, so he kept him around and it turned out to be a strong decision. This is a results-oriented business and you can't avoid a little luck no matter how hard you try. So it seems silly to worry whether or not someone was 'lucky' to have 5-7 more infield singles in a season.
I am not arguing it was a bad decision to bring him back or that he was going to be good/bad this season. Simply that his 2010 season was a bit lucky due to the infield singles he was able to rack up this year that he really shouldn't have been expected to have. Nothing more or nothing less than that at this point.

jojo
10-06-2010, 05:28 AM
Open your minds. ;)

Exactly.

jojo
10-06-2010, 05:35 AM
This is sad. Why are some trying to beat down Ramon's nice year in order to push your agenda. Some have come to the forgone conclusion that Walt is a rube of a GM and will try any means necessary to cut him down.

For those knocking RH or calling him lucky....in a single sentence what point are you trying to make? Just like some say with UZR...production is production....you can't just dismiss it.

Pointing out that RH's numbers were driven by a BABIP that he isn't likely ever going to repeat is not an agenda. It's an unbiased look at a specific player whose name was brought up in discussion.

The counterpoint has had a significant component of morphing ad hominem. You can disagree with the RH argument and think Jocketty shrewdly signed a undervalued player or that RH truly should be expected to perform at a level just below Joe Maurer but it's patently unfair to call the saber argument as laid out in this thread a product of a closed mind.

jojo
10-06-2010, 05:59 AM
Either way, I get the point you're making, and I'm not saying it's wrong by any means, but it comes across as diminishing an organizational decision that turned out well no matter how we expected it to turn out. It seems like nitpicking at this or that being lucky in order to justify a failed projection.

It was a discussion about a specific player in the context of a greater discussion about what player moves suggest concerning Jocketty's time in Cincy vs his time in St Louis.

The argument that RH wasn't really an appropriate tell for the Jocketty approach was laid out with the reasons for the conclusion.

jojo
10-06-2010, 06:02 AM
This is sad. Why are some trying to beat down Ramon's nice year in order to push your agenda. Some have come to the forgone conclusion that Walt is a rube of a GM and will try any means necessary to cut him down.

For those knocking RH or calling him lucky....in a single sentence what point are you trying to make? Just like some say with UZR...production is production....you can't just dismiss it.

Why does every single thing always have to come down to a test of whether the conclusion supports the golden narrative? I get that a lot of the poor behavior that gets hurled at my posts and the attack the messenger is really venting a disdain for sabermetrics. I also get that a lot of people naturally lead with their fan heart first. But really, Doug is biased by an anti-Reds slant for making a saber-based argument that RH had a lucky season? He's a large reason why Redszone has the minor league forum and has devoted huge portions of his life to following their organization.

Seriously people, such ad hominen is kind of offensive. This is a place for discussion.

Brutus
10-06-2010, 06:14 AM
It was a discussion about a specific player in the context of a greater discussion about what player moves suggest concerning Jocketty's time in Cincy vs his time in St Louis.

The argument that RH wasn't really an appropriate tell for the Jocketty approach was laid out with the reasons for the conclusion.

Except the appropriate tells seem to better define the narrow view of an incomplete projection system than the actual mindset of Jocketty. In fact, the only reasons given thus far as to why RH wasn't an appropriate citation in the discussion was the centric reliance on wOBA and the 'luck' of RH's BABIP, which is necessary to combat the possibility that the wOBA projection was incorrect in its assessment. It's been established in this thread that it's not rational for Jocketty to have expected much different than what the projections indicated, and when something different happened, the variance was strictly due to luck and he shouldn't get credit for it even if he did expect different. I guess it seems too much like a referendum on wOBA, and the credit only being given if Jocketty acquiesces to it than actually about RH.

kaldaniels
10-06-2010, 06:34 AM
What is the point of trying to prove Ramon had a "lucky" year? Why is so much energy going into trying to show that?

kaldaniels
10-06-2010, 06:38 AM
And by no stretch does WJ deserve GM of the year for signing Ramon. It was a signing of a solid vet for a few million that has paid off well if you ask me. What's to debate over that?

jojo
10-06-2010, 06:42 AM
Except the appropriate tells seem to better define the narrow view of an incomplete projection system than the actual mindset of Jocketty. In fact, the only reasons given thus far as to why RH wasn't an appropriate citation in the discussion was the centric reliance on wOBA and the 'luck' of RH's BABIP, which is necessary to combat the possibility that the wOBA projection was incorrect in its assessment. It's been established in this thread that it's not rational for Jocketty to have expected much different than what the projections indicated, and when something different happened, the variance was strictly due to luck and he shouldn't get credit for it even if he did expect different. I guess it seems too much like a referendum on wOBA, and the credit only being given if Jocketty acquiesces to it than actually about RH.

If some are offended by the use of wOBA as a premise for an argument, lets ignore it. Lets ignore projections. It's this simple-the difference between his numbers this season and the last three seasons can be almost completely explained by a BABIP that is clearly out of whack for his career. Part of that is driven by a batted ball distribution than swung toward GB tendencies and a greater number of infield hits. RH was on pace to have the same number of infield hits in 600 PAs as Drew Stubbs and Andrew McCutchen had this year. Think about that.

This is not posed as a referendum on stats. Step back and actually look at what guys like Doug and I are actually suggesting.

jojo
10-06-2010, 06:46 AM
What is the point of trying to prove Ramon had a "lucky" year? Why is so much energy going into trying to show that?

Why is there so much energy going into refuting a relatively small and innocuous original statement?

http://www.redszone.com/forums/showpost.php?p=2277932&postcount=83

Brutus
10-06-2010, 07:06 AM
If some are offended by the use of wOBA as a premise for an argument, lets ignore it. Lets ignore projections. It's this simple-the difference between his numbers this season and the last three seasons can be almost completely explained by a BABIP that is clearly out of whack for his career. Part of that is driven by a batted ball distribution than swung toward GB tendencies and a greater number of infield hits. RH was on pace to have the same number of infield hits in 600 PAs as Drew Stubbs and Andrew McCutchen had this year. Think about that.

This is not posed as a referendum on stats. Step back and actually look at what guys like Doug and I are actually suggesting.

I know what you're suggesting. You already said wOBA projections define "true talent." And that's the crux of the issue for me, as it only explains 49% of variance for players from year to year production.

Overriding the specific issue about BABIP, which in itself is a fair argument, is that you've made it to where Jocketty should have either believed in the wOBA (or similar projections) or he was irrational for not. Those were your statements, not mine.

I'm not even debating whether or not you should credit Jocketty. I think the standard you're applying is one that is stemmed from narrow personal beliefs, and that it's not prudent to adhere those strictly to others' belief systems. What I'm saying is that most everyone else believes projection systems are infantile and only a guide, and do not come close enough to the accuracy that is necessary to achieve a true litmus test of rationality regarding personnel.

We're in agreement in both A) that RH is not a 'true' .350 hitter in all reality, and B) is not likely to do that going forward into 2011. But where I take exception is that notion that, even though he did strike .330 plus for four consecutive seasons, that's not his 'true talent' because it doesn't fit within the 3-year parameters of the projected aging curve. I think what a player has done in his career is far more important than how other individuals have aged. And even if we accept the projection as a solid baseline, it's still not nearly consistent enough to rely on too heavily.

Scrap Irony
10-06-2010, 10:22 AM
Why does every single thing always have to come down to a test of whether the conclusion supports the golden narrative? I get that a lot of the poor behavior that gets hurled at my posts and the attack the messenger is really venting a disdain for sabermetrics. I also get that a lot of people naturally lead with their fan heart first. But really, Doug is biased by an anti-Reds slant for making a saber-based argument that RH had a lucky season? He's a large reason why Redszone has the minor league forum and has devoted huge portions of his life to following their organization.

Seriously people, such ad hominen is kind of offensive. This is a place for discussion.

Perhaps it's not the message, but the messenger? Take a look at your post here and the loaded language used. So, in one post, you've called those that happen to disagree with your premise offensive, attacking, biased, disdainful, boorish idiots that basically only attack the message.

Yet, you ask those that disagree with you to discuss with you their reasoning in a nice way.

You have insisted that RH wasn't a move that was effective and you point to projections as "proof". Those of us who disagree with you point to the following:

1) Projections are around a 50/50 shot and should not be taken as the end-all be-all of a player's true skill. There's something else going on that isn't being crunched in projection numbers; otherwise, they'd have a better relationship with actual production. As of now, it seems that this esoteric happenstance of real-world production is unquantifiable, at least as it relates to the numbers we are privy to as fans. Therefore projections, while they serve a purpose, aren't a great way to prove anything as quantifiable as good production.

2) Jocketty has had a long history of trading for, signing, and keeping players that outproduce said projections. It's one of the hallmarks of his ability as a GM. Obviously, what he's done has worked. He also probably didn't follow the projections you use when complaining about these moves. In the end, all that matters is that he chose wisely. And, again, according to the numbers, he did.

Personally, I like numbers, jojo. They help me make cases and points that otherwise would be diffciult to grasp. Some GMs, however, don't use the numbers I like. Is it fair to paint those GMs (and their moves) in broad strokes of poor because you can't make a case for them? Which brings me to the third point posters have made on this thread:

3) Just because someone disagrees with your basic assumptions doesn't make them wrong. The signing of Miguel Cairo was a good one because he produced at a high level. The aquisition of Ramon Hernandez was a good one because he produced. The trading for Nick Masset was a good one because he produced. Jocketty, in short, has produced and should receive some credit for that production.

It shows a total disregard for opposing views (and common sense, IMO) to say he was merely lucky as a GM because his players were lucky. What matters isn't that they were lucky or not because all players are lucky and unlucky depending on specific seasons. Sometimes, a hit falls in, sometimes, liners are caught.

Shrug. So what?

Jocketty has found a way to bottle luck, as it were, consistently over his 20-year front office career.

TheNext44
10-06-2010, 10:33 AM
Pointing out that RH's numbers were driven by a BABIP that he isn't likely ever going to repeat is not an agenda. It's an unbiased look at a specific player whose name was brought up in discussion.

The counterpoint has had a significant component of morphing ad hominem. You can disagree with the RH argument and think Jocketty shrewdly signed a undervalued player or that RH truly should be expected to perform at a level just below Joe Maurer but it's patently unfair to call the saber argument as laid out in this thread a product of a closed mind.

First, I agree that the not too subtle digs at Sabermetrics don't help.

However...

It is possible to agree that Hernandez was lucky this year and that he won't repeat this success next year, and still think that Jocketty made a shrewd and good move in acquiring him from the Orioles. All you need to do is look past the numbers, to think that one needs to take into account other elements than just a players stats to accurately project how he will produce in the future.

This is a perfect example of that. Jocketty stated when he acquired Hernandez that he believed that Hernandez would likely bounce back to previous production when healthy. Now it took until he had surgery for Ramon to bounce back, but that does support Jocketty's argument that Hernandez's drop in production was less a result of a drop in talent, and more a result of an injury.

And one more crucial point, focusing only on his offense ignores half of Hernandez's production for the team. Jocketty saw that this team needed a veteran catcher to pair with and help develop Hanigan, and Hernandez has been a perfect fit for that.

westofyou
10-06-2010, 10:38 AM
One thing about projection systems (and I use them so I'm not slamming them ever) is that they can't account for coaching, so they have a variable that can't see George Bamberger teaching the spitter to Ross Grimsley and Mike Caldwell, they can't see adjustments in motions, stances etc.. thus that's why they can't be perfect, but they can be in the area.

It's just not an exact science, so thus it IS like scouting somewhat.

lollipopcurve
10-06-2010, 11:03 AM
It's just not an exact science

No, they (projections) aren't, especially when they try to build in defensive metrics. This is why assigning to them the ability to decipher "truth" about a player seems so self-promoting to me.

dougdirt
10-06-2010, 11:25 AM
No, they (projections) aren't, especially when they try to build in defensive metrics. This is why assigning to them the ability to decipher "truth" about a player seems so self-promoting to me.

What projection system also uses defensive metrics?

edabbs44
10-06-2010, 12:11 PM
Gameday fellas...let's put this on ice as there are bigger fish to fry.

Headed to Philly.

Homer Bailey
10-06-2010, 12:13 PM
Gameday fellas...let's put this on ice as there are bigger fish to fry.

Headed to Philly.

Enjoy the game my man.

jojo
10-06-2010, 02:21 PM
Perhaps it's not the message, but the messenger? Take a look at your post here and the loaded language used. So, in one post, you've called those that happen to disagree with your premise offensive, attacking, biased, disdainful, boorish idiots that basically only attack the message.

That's actually a complete mischaracterization of the quoted text. The language used was specifically directed at ad hominen attacks and baiting NOT at people who disagree with my argument. Please reread the context in which the quoted post was made and reconsider the point that was being made.

The above conclusion doesn't follow from my comments and in case there is ANY confusion, the erroneous conclusion above was not intended to follow from my comments.


Yet, you ask those that disagree with you to discuss with you their reasoning in a nice way.

Absolutely. State what you think and give everyone the courtesy of sharing why you think it.


You have insisted that RH wasn't a move that was effective and you point to projections as "proof".

I've argued the move was a "meh" move and pointed to his actual numbers in 2009 as proof. I've argued that his extension was also a "meh" move based upon what he was projected to do and in this thread I've argued that it isn't likely the Reds were expecting him perform at the level he did so Jocketty really shouldn't get credit for knowing RH would. I haven't said either the trade or the extension were mistakes or bad moves. The extension was a "meh" move that worked out really, really well this season. Good luck picking the next one.




Those of us who disagree with you point to the following:

1) Projections are around a 50/50 shot and should not be taken as the end-all be-all of a player's true skill. There's something else going on that isn't being crunched in projection numbers; otherwise, they'd have a better relationship with actual production. As of now, it seems that this esoteric happenstance of real-world production is unquantifiable, at least as it relates to the numbers we are privy to as fans. Therefore projections, while they serve a purpose, aren't a great way to prove anything as quantifiable as good production.

Projection systems aren't a coin toss. They routinely correlate around .7 to actual performance. In lay terms that means they get one 70% of the way there. Clearly there is something else going on as the r2=.49 indicates but really, that r2 is not nearly as useful as the r for the types of answers we're seeking and the r2 shouldn't be used as a premise for arguing the baby should be thrown out with the bath water. An r=.7 is a therapy for disease or a multi-million dollar proprietary selectable marker for an uber cow. BTW, an r2=.49 is money in the bank for breeding programs.

But lets step back...what's the r2 on scouting reports? Can we even discuss scouting reports (The Reds FO won't let us see their's)? If not, what are we left with then?


2) Jocketty has had a long history of trading for, signing, and keeping players that outproduce said projections. It's one of the hallmarks of his ability as a GM. Obviously, what he's done has worked. He also probably didn't follow the projections you use when complaining about these moves. In the end, all that matters is that he chose wisely. And, again, according to the numbers, he did.

First, it's very broad strokes to suggest I'm complaining about a host of Jocketty moves. Read the archives. You'd think Jocketty was Santa Claus given my posts concerning the Rolen trade.

The likely scenario with RH is probably something like this. They needed a catcher, RH was in hand and they were most comfortable with a veteran catcher with a young staff that was about to get younger. There really weren't a ton of options especially in their price range. They could resign him cheaply and without risk of a long term commitment. Who knows? Maybe he'll swing the bat a little better too?

Again, that's all perfectly defensible. But why does Jocketty also have to be given credit for being a clairvoyant?

Clearly, RH is a bargain given how he outperformed his projections and should be resigned if it were possible to know he'd outperform his projections again next year. But that's kind of the rub isn't it? I doubt anyone expected it this year and not many probably expect it next year.


Personally, I like numbers, jojo. They help me make cases and points that otherwise would be diffciult to grasp. Some GMs, however, don't use the numbers I like. Is it fair to paint those GMs (and their moves) in broad strokes of poor because you can't make a case for them? Which brings me to the third point posters have made on this thread:

We're talking about a specific transaction. Jocketty isn't being painted in broad strokes by arguing he had no way of predicting RH would have an uncharacteristically high BABIP. If anything, giving him credit for knowing it would happen is painting him with too broad of a stroke. In fact, since they paid RH like his would be a slightly less than a 1 WAR player, Jocketty would kinda have to be considered a jerk if he actually knew RH would perform dramatically better.


3) Just because someone disagrees with your basic assumptions doesn't make them wrong. The signing of Miguel Cairo was a good one because he produced at a high level. The aquisition of Ramon Hernandez was a good one because he produced. The trading for Nick Masset was a good one because he produced. Jocketty, in short, has produced and should receive some credit for that production.

It shows a total disregard for opposing views (and common sense, IMO) to say he was merely lucky as a GM because his players were lucky. What matters isn't that they were lucky or not because all players are lucky and unlucky depending on specific seasons. Sometimes, a hit falls in, sometimes, liners are caught.

Unfortunately, you're painting my views with a very broad stroke.

Arguing that RH's production was largely driven by an unsustainable, unpredicatable spike in his BABIP and this shouldn't color the interpretation of the decision to extend him does not show a total disregard for opposing views. It's simply formulating an argument using sabermetric-based premises. If that's offensive to some, well, it shouldn't be.

Scrap Irony
10-06-2010, 03:18 PM
That's actually a complete mischaracterization of the quoted text. The language used was specifically directed at ad hominen attacks and baiting NOT at people who disagree with my argument. Please reread the context in which the quoted post was made and reconsider the point that was being made.

The above conclusion doesn't follow from my comments and in case there is ANY confusion, the erroneous conclusion above was not intended to follow from my comments.

I see that loaded language and assume, because you're obviously an intelligent guy, you know what you're doing with the written word. I assume you know that loaded language is a pathos appeal meant to garner a positive reaction both for your "side" of an argument and a negative reaction against the "other" side. (Sides you've chosen as pro- and anti-sabre, though those that disagree with you are familiar with and appreciate sabremetrics.)

Indeed, these are rhetorical tools taught in high school. (At least in my high school.) They are at once obvious and baiting in and of themselves.

This isn't the first time you've done it. This is simply the first time it's been this obvious. Your arguments are constantly using loaded language and subtle name-calling when you "discuss" a topic.

If you're not couching your remarks in that way, then please take the bolded parts of your paragraph as a way to see how people who disagree with you can take it. It sounds both disingenious and arrogant.

If, on the other hand, you were simply responding to other, "baiting remarks" (as you claim), then why not practice what you preach first? Ignore the baiters, explain your own viewpoint, and move on.



I've argued the move was a "meh" move and pointed to his actual numbers in 2009 as proof. I've argued that his extension was also a "meh" move based upon what he was projected to do and in this thread I've argued that it isn't likely the Reds were expecting him perform at the level he did so Jocketty really shouldn't get credit for knowing RH would. I haven't said either the trade or the extension were mistakes or bad moves. The extension was a "meh" move that worked out really, really well this season.


Again, my responses:

1) So what if he were lucky? The point is that he produced at a high level and Jocketty should get that credit. If Jocketty signed a middle reliever, for example, who was healthy when he signed but got injured soon after and became ineffective, should Jocketty receive blame? Sure, he should. That's part and parcel of being a GM. Look at Redszone as an example. What are Jocketty's two most villified moves? Taveras and Lincoln. Mike Lincoln was a decent pitcher before being hurt, but injuries are a part of the game, just as luck is.


Good luck picking the next one.
And, the third argument stated. It seems as if Jocketty has found the veritable genie in the bottle. He gets lucky all the time with those type of acquisitions.



Projection systems aren't a coin toss. They routinely correlate around .7 to actual performance. In lay terms that means they get one 70% of the way there. Clearly there is something else going on as the r2=.49 indicates but really, that r2 is not nearly as useful as the r for the types of answers we're seeking and the r2 shouldn't be used as a premise for arguing the baby should be thrown out with the bath water. An r=.7 is a therapy for disease or a multi-million dollar proprietary selectable marker for an uber cow. BTW, an r2=.49 is money in the bank for breeding programs.

Don't care about breeding programs nor do I care about cures for diseases. (These are a third type of fallacy called a false analogy. Whoever your 10th grade teacher was should get a raise, btw. Fantastic use of rhetorical skill.)

And we disagree about projections systems as a whole. Projections are great to use: in the offseason when determining who should be signed and re-signed. They're a great tool. I use them for fun. I'm sure Jocketty uses some sort of projection as a part of his number crunching.

They just make no sense to use here.

Obviously, Jocketty used something aside from these projections when he acquired Hernandez. He said, when he traded for him that he expected Hernandez to hit much better in Cincinnati. After a year of injuries, he was proven right.

What does it matter what projections had to say about it? The point was that Hernandez did it, and Jocketty was smart enough to sign him. I think, in order to prove your nebulous point about "real" talent, you used the number that best proved your argument and ignored all others. (That, btw, is yet another fallacy called "stacking the deck" and is a type of omission fallacy. I'm telling you, call your sophomore English teacher and tell her you love her. She did right by you.)

Production is all that matters after the fact.


But lets step back...what's the r2 on scouting reports? Can we even discuss scouting reports (The Reds FO won't let us see their's)? If not, what are we left with then?

Understanding that, sometimes, the front office knows things we don't? Figuring out that some numbers don't work with some people, especially in the real world?

And, just to make sure I understand this: because we can't see what the front office is using to determine player acquisition, we use projection systems that we know aren't right (vis a vis, what Jocketty uses to obtain players)?

Wouldn't that almost always mean we had problems with some of Jocketty's moves? Those same moves that work out so often as to be statistically interesting, at the least?

If so, wouldn't we also conclude that the acquisitions of Nix, Cairo, Masset, and many, many others would automatically be poor moves? Which brings us to:


First, it's very broad strokes to suggest I'm complaining about a host of Jocketty moves. Read the archives. You'd think Jocketty was Santa Claus given my posts concerning the Rolen trade.

Read. You liked the Rolen deal. Great. Congratulations, I guess. So, take the next step with me, then: has Jocketty done a good job as Cincinnati GM? (Because that's what all this boils down to, really.) If not, why?



The likely scenario with RH is probably something like this. They needed a catcher, RH was in hand and they were most comfortable with a veteran catcher with a young staff that was about to get younger. There really weren't a ton of options especially in their price range. They could resign him cheaply and without risk of a long term commitment. Who knows? Maybe he'll swing the bat a little better too?

Again, that's all perfectly defensible. But why does Jocketty also have to be given credit for being a clairvoyant?

Clearly, RH is a bargain given how he outperformed his projections and should be resigned if it were possible to know he'd outperform his projections again next year. But that's kind of the rub isn't it? I doubt anyone expected it this year and not many probably expect it next year.

I disagree with your premise because Jocketty himself said that Ramon had a good glove, was misunderstood as to his attitude issues, and would likely hit like he had earlier in his career.

He did that. (Granted, it took a year to do it after surgery last season, both things that cannot be ovelooked.)

It doesn't take clairvoyance; it takes foresight. Jocketty showed that and was rewarded.



We're talking about a specific transaction. Jocketty isn't being painted in broad strokes by arguing he had no way of predicting RH would have an uncharacteristically high BABIP. If anything, giving him credit for knowing it would happen is painting him with too broad of a stroke. In fact, since they paid RH like his would be a slightly less than a 1 WAR player, Jocketty would kinda have to be considered a jerk if he actually knew RH would perform dramatically better.

Again, it's luck. Ballplayers get lucky. Ballplayers get unlucky. He gets credit because he signed a player that played well. I don't understand the jerk remark.


Unfortunately, you're painting my views with a very broad stroke.

Arguing that RH's production was largely driven by an unsustainable, unpredicatable spike in his BABIP and this shouldn't color the interpretation of the decision to extend him does not show a total disregard for opposing views. It's simply formulating an argument using sabermetric-based premises. If that's offensive to some, well, it shouldn't be.


Even without the BABIP bump, Hernandez was a plus acquisition, given both his defense and his bat, especially when compared to whom he replaced. (And especially after he got healthy.)

And that's not what's offensive. The offensive part is when you diregard his real production in favor of predictions of future events (or projections of what might have been but never was). What's offensive is that you talk about getting along, but use fallacious and incendiary language meant to cause a confrontation.

kaldaniels
10-06-2010, 04:28 PM
And before jojo responds and points to my remark a few pages back that struck a nerve... let me just say...

I love sabermetrics. They are an essential piece of the puzzle in terms of evaluating personnel decisons.

That said, and what has not been answered yet, is why in the world are we insisting on attempting to point out that Ramon was lucky this year? I think it is being pointed out to somewhat undermine what Walt has done. (And I'm not someone who thinks Walt is the reason why the Reds made the playoffs...but he has tremendously helped the cause.)

Ramon was a good signing and he was productive this year. No buts.

jojo
10-06-2010, 04:46 PM
I see that loaded language and assume, because you're obviously an intelligent guy, you know what you're doing with the written word. I assume you know that loaded language is a pathos appeal meant to garner a positive reaction both for your "side" of an argument and a negative reaction against the "other" side. (Sides you've chosen as pro- and anti-sabre, though those that disagree with you are familiar with and appreciate sabremetrics).

As clearly indicated previously, that language was directed at those who choose to bait and attack the messenger rather than discuss the merits of an argument on its face. Clearly I have a long history of engaging others in healthy, respectful debate so if you'd like to discuss this particular assertion further, please let's do it via PM.

Indeed, these are rhetorical tools taught in high school. (At least in my high school.) They are at once obvious and baiting in and of themselves.

This isn't the first time you've done it. This is simply the first time it's been this obvious. Your arguments are constantly using loaded language and subtle name-calling when you "discuss" a topic.

As clearly indicated previously, that language was directed at those who choose to bait and attack the messenger rather than discuss the merits of an argument on its face. Clearly I have a long history of engaging others in healthy, respectful debate so if you'd like to discuss this particular assertion further, please let's do it via PM.


If you're not couching your remarks in that way, then please take the bolded parts of your paragraph as a way to see how people who disagree with you can take it. It sounds both disingenious and arrogant.

Again, you've mischaracterized those comments and ignored the context in which they were offered. Reread them and we can discuss them further in private if you need further clarification.


If, on the other hand, you were simply responding to other, "baiting remarks" (as you claim), then why not practice what you preach first? Ignore the baiters, explain your own viewpoint, and move on.

What I did was respond to an patently unfair comment and truthfully, that really should have been the end of it.




Again, my responses:

1) So what if he were lucky? The point is that he produced at a high level and Jocketty should get that credit.

Because if he was lucky, that means by extension that Jocketty was lucky?


If Jocketty signed a middle reliever, for example, who was healthy when he signed but got injured soon after and became ineffective, should Jocketty receive blame?

Of course not.


Look at Redszone as an example. What are Jocketty's two most villified moves? Taveras and Lincoln. Mike Lincoln was a decent pitcher before being hurt, but injuries are a part of the game, just as luck is.

Lincoln and Taveras were poor decisions. Do a search if you are curious for why I'd argue that.



And, the third argument stated. It seems as if Jocketty has found the veritable genie in the bottle. He gets lucky all the time with those type of acquisitions.

And he gets burned all the time too (Willy says hi).


Don't care about breeding programs nor do I care about cures for diseases. (These are a third type of fallacy called a false analogy. Whoever your 10th grade teacher was should get a raise, btw. Fantastic use of rhetorical skill.)

That's not a fallacy. A breeding herd, a cohort of cancer patients and professional baseball players all represent complex populations and there are many similarities between modeling production on the baseball field, the effect of compound X on breast cancer, and the genetic basis for a specific trait of interest. if it's good enough for saving lives or driving a billion dollar industry, it's probably good enough for baseball.


And we disagree about projections systems as a whole.

Clearly. But I like being 70% of the way to an answer to an extremely complicated problem.



What does it matter what projections had to say about it? The point was that Hernandez did it, and Jocketty was smart enough to sign him. I think, in order to prove your nebulous point about "real" talent, you used the number that best proved your argument and ignored all others. (That, btw, is yet another fallacy called "stacking the deck" and is a type of omission fallacy. I'm telling you, call your sophomore English teacher and tell her you love her. She did right by you.)

The problem with that narrative is that there was nothing arbitrary about the numbers I used. Please take this kind of thing private.

jojo
10-06-2010, 04:48 PM
And before jojo responds and points to my remark a few pages back that struck a nerve... let me just say...

I love sabermetrics. They are an essential piece of the puzzle in terms of evaluating personnel decisons.

That said, and what has not been answered yet, is why in the world are we insisting on attempting to point out that Ramon was lucky this year? I think it is being pointed out to somewhat undermine what Walt has done. (And I'm not someone who thinks Walt is the reason why the Reds made the playoffs...but he has tremendously helped the cause.)

Ramon was a good signing and he was productive this year. No buts.

My original comment was pretty innocent and straightforward. I don't get the vitriol either. It was pointed out because this thread is discussing Jocketty's decisions.


Ramon was projected to post a wOBA of .317 given a survey of projection systems such as James/Zips/CHONE/Marcels. He posted a wOBA of .350.

Next year he's much more likely to post a wOBA around .315.

Sometimes you get lucky and a guy defies his true talent. This was a season where the Reds hit on the inside straight more than they missed. RH was one of those.

Brutus
10-06-2010, 04:57 PM
That's not a fallacy. A breeding herd, a cohort of cancer patients and professional baseball players all represent complex populations and there are many similarities between modeling production on the baseball field, the effect of compound X on breast cancer, and the genetic basis for a specific trait of interest. if it's good enough for saving lives or driving a billion dollar industry, it's probably good enough for baseball.

No scientist studying cancer or whatever other medical findings, a .70 correlation a "cure." That would be considered major progress, but absolutely no one in the medical community would consider that a cure. But we're not curing cancer here anyhow. We're further along in the research curve than finding a cure for a deadly disease.




Clearly. But I like being 70% of the way to an answer to an extremely complicated problem.



Except you're not 70% of the way to an extremely complicated problem, you're only 49% of the way. Correlation is not the same as explaining variance. You're using the .7 correlation because it sounds better than using its square (49%) which is what actually is correct to use as its %. A .70 correlation is not 70%. A .70 correlation is 49%.

So using projection only gets you halfway where you need to be. That's why it's not prudent to use projections too narrowly.

jojo
10-06-2010, 05:35 PM
Except you're not 70% of the way to an extremely complicated problem, you're only 49% of the way. Correlation is not the same as explaining variance. You're using the .7 correlation because it sounds better than using its square (49%) which is what actually is correct to use as its %. A .70 correlation is not 70%. A .70 correlation is 49%.

So using projection only gets you halfway where you need to be. That's why it's not prudent to use projections too narrowly.

I'm using the r=.7 because it has a practical interpretation that is easily understood. What does a GM care more about-how projected performance correlates with actual production or what his sums of squares looks like?

His underpaid stathead cares about those sums of squares because he's trying to explain as much variation as possible as he seeks to improve the model, but given the questions were discussing it's most relevant to know how the predicted performance matches the actual performance.

There simply aren't any statistical shenanigans going on here Brutus.

Brutus
10-06-2010, 05:39 PM
I'm using the r=.7 because it has a practical interpretation that is easily understood. What does a GM care more about-how projected performance correlates with actual production or what his sums of squares looks like?

His underpaid stathead cares about those sums of squares because he's trying to explain as much variation as possible as he seeks to improve the model, but given the questions were discussing it's most relevant to know how the predicted performance matches the actual performance.

There simply aren't any statistical shenanigans going on here Brutus.

Batting average correlates in the .6 range. And we know, for a variety of reasons, that isn't enough to use with any predictive intent. Thereby, it seems like a .7 correlation is not enough to use as a predictive measure either.

It's enough to use in a discussion, it's not nearly enough to make any sweeping conclusions or generalizations.

jojo
10-06-2010, 05:47 PM
Batting average correlates in the .6 range.

Correlates to what?

Brutus
10-06-2010, 05:49 PM
Correlates to what?

To runs.

jojo
10-06-2010, 06:00 PM
To runs.

Actually the correlation of average to runs is generally higher than that. That said, we criticize BA as having a low correlation because there are metrics that correlate better to runs than BA.

That is not the case with projection systems available to the public.

Brutus
10-06-2010, 06:06 PM
Actually the correlation of average to runs is generally higher than that. That said, we criticize BA as having a low correlation because there are metrics that correlate better to runs than BA.

That is not the case with projection systems available to the public.

Right, but while the projections may be the best statistical models we have at this time, being the best doesn't mean they're accurate enough to use in anything more than a "take with a grain of salt" basis.

jojo
10-06-2010, 06:13 PM
Right, but while the projections may be the best statistical models we have at this time, being the best doesn't mean they're accurate enough to use in anything more than a "take with a grain of salt" basis.

A correlation of .7 is inherently useful even if it may be possible in the future to create a model with a correlation of .8....

Brutus
10-06-2010, 06:19 PM
A correlation of .7 is inherently useful even if it may be possible in the future to create a model with a correlation of .8....

Absolutely. I'm all for the desire to constantly improve on it. But that's the whole point... there's still too much room to improve on it to bank on with any certainty whatsoever.

Scrap Irony
10-06-2010, 06:28 PM
I know this isn't germaine to the Reds. I know it's off-topic. I can't help myself. Sorry, all.


As clearly indicated previously, that language was directed at those who choose to bait and attack the messenger rather than discuss the merits of an argument on its face. Clearly I have a long history of engaging others in healthy, respectful debate so if you'd like to discuss this particular assertion further, please let's do it via PM.

Again, you've mischaracterized those comments and ignored the context in which they were offered. Reread them and we can discuss them further in private if you need further clarification.

I question anyone who finds the need to ask others to "take it private via PM" so often.


What I did was respond to an patently unfair comment and truthfully, that really should have been the end of it.

So you can respond to something you believe is unfair, but others need to take it private? Shouldn't you play by your own rules? Why respond at all?


Because if he was lucky, that means by extension that Jocketty was lucky?

Jocketty has won eight division titles in 15 years. I suggest he's doing something that's less lucky and more successful. It strikes me as odd that you would argue otherwise, as you seem to be someone who would value common sense and logic.


Lincoln and Taveras were poor decisions. Do a search if you are curious for why I'd argue that.

Hey, look! It's a strawman. I never said they weren't poor decisions. But this particular fallacy is really clever because it looks like you were disagreeing with me, so, because it appears I'm wrong in part (though I never claimed either were good choices to sign), all my argument must be wrong.


And he gets burned all the time too (Willy says hi).

Do you really want to play one for one with Jocketty's successes and failures? If so, I'll certainly play that game all day.


That's not a fallacy. A breeding herd, a cohort of cancer patients and professional baseball players all represent complex populations and there are many similarities between modeling production on the baseball field, the effect of compound X on breast cancer, and the genetic basis for a specific trait of interest. if it's good enough for saving lives or driving a billion dollar industry, it's probably good enough for baseball.

Clearly. But I like being 70% of the way to an answer to an extremely complicated problem.

Sure, it's a fallacy. (In fact, it's three.)

1)You're (falsely) comparing something complex (cancer research or herd breeding) with many permutations to something simple (2010 end of year production).
2) You purposefully ignore the end of year numbers that would prove your assertion wrong, vis a vis Hernandez being a good pick-up.
3) You claim numbers that aren't supported by the math. Projections don't work at a 70% level. They work at far less than that. From The University of Hawaii website:

As a matter of routine it is the squared correlations that should be interpreted. This is because the correlation coefficient is misleading in suggesting the existence of more covariation than exists, and this problem gets worse as the correlation approaches zero.
Therefore, it wouldn't be 70%, but 49%.

jojo
10-06-2010, 06:31 PM
Seriously, take it private. Please.

dougdirt
10-06-2010, 06:33 PM
Jocketty has won eight division titles in 15 years. I suggest he's doing something that's less lucky and more successful. It strikes me as odd that you would argue otherwise, as you seem to be someone who would value common sense and logic.

He isn't arguing that Jocketty does this consistently at all. Just that in the case of RH, Jocketty got lucky to get the production he did out of RH because there is no reason at all to believe he should have performed as well as he did.

jojo
10-06-2010, 06:53 PM
Sure, it's a fallacy. (In fact, it's three.)

1)You're (falsely) comparing something complex (cancer research or herd breeding) with many permutations to something simple (2010 end of year production).

My analogy drew comparisons between cancer, herd breeding, and projecting performance of baseball players all of which "have many permutations".


2) You purposefully ignore the end of year numbers that would prove your assertion wrong, vis a vis Hernandez being a good pick-up.

His actual end of year numbers were a central consideration in my argument that they were significantly greater than what a survey of projection systems suggested he would produce. I couldn't make such an argument without considering his end of year numbers.


3) You claim numbers that aren't supported by the math. Projections don't work at a 70% level. They work at far less than that. From The University of Hawaii website:

Therefore, it wouldn't be 70%, but 49%.

http://www.quantitativeanthropology.org/index.php?journal=QA&page=article&op=view&path%5B%5D=28&path%5B%5D=44

Statisticians can argue about matrices and Pearson coefficients all they want (and they want to alot). For practical purposes, if you want to predict a number, you care about how close you actually get to it. That's why .7 is meaningful-there is absolutely nothing inappropriate with using the r in this case. The r and r2 are inherent properties of the same model but they inform different issues.

westofyou
10-06-2010, 08:16 PM
Seriously, take it private. Please.

Why?

You addressed him and he in turn should have the chance to reply, you're not the ombudsmen here, let the man have voice.

jojo
10-06-2010, 08:25 PM
Why?

You addressed him and he in turn should have the chance to reply, you're not the ombudsmen here, let the man have voice.

It's pretty obvious isn't it?

He's already had several bites at this particular apple and articulately made his dislike for me clear. But it is a good thing that he apologized to everyone.

Scrap Irony
10-06-2010, 09:14 PM
Obviously, there's a disconnect here. I just want to talk about the Reds with like-minded fans and not wade through all the crap on the typical sports board.

So let's try it this way.

What is the best way to gauge the effectiveness of Walt Jocketty as a GM?

I insist that the proof is ultimately in the pudding. What matters at the end of the day is production. Usually, that proof is found, when it comes to a team, as wins and pennants. As to individual players he's signed, traded for, or kept, I defer to the sabermetric community on the board and use a combination of WAR, wOBA, and OPS.

If there is another way that might better gauge the effectiveness of GM or player, let's discuss that, shall we?

(I would prefer to discuss it without the rancor, smart alec comments, and obvious obfuscation that seems to seep through our discussions. Let's let that indeed stay private. In PMs.

Sea Ray
10-06-2010, 11:44 PM
He isn't arguing that Jocketty does this consistently at all. Just that in the case of RH, Jocketty got lucky to get the production he did out of RH because there is no reason at all to believe he should have performed as well as he did.

I would put it slightly differently. I'd say "it was nice" tha RH put up good numbers but he was a good signing even if he hadn't gotten those 8 infield hits

kaldaniels
10-07-2010, 12:53 AM
Obviously, there's a disconnect here. I just want to talk about the Reds with like-minded fans and not wade through all the crap on the typical sports board.

So let's try it this way.

What is the best way to gauge the effectiveness of Walt Jocketty as a GM?

I insist that the proof is ultimately in the pudding. What matters at the end of the day is production. Usually, that proof is found, when it comes to a team, as wins and pennants. As to individual players he's signed, traded for, or kept, I defer to the sabermetric community on the board and use a combination of WAR, wOBA, and OPS.

If there is another way that might better gauge the effectiveness of GM or player, let's discuss that, shall we?

(I would prefer to discuss it without the rancor, smart alec comments, and obvious obfuscation that seems to seep through our discussions. Let's let that indeed stay private. In PMs.

Thats the holdup. And I don't mean to stir anyone up...but there are some on here who judge solely by the "information at hand" at the time of a transaction and some who judge by the results on the field.

When those 2 paths veer in opposite directions, thats when these arguments start.

bucksfan2
10-07-2010, 09:01 AM
He isn't arguing that Jocketty does this consistently at all. Just that in the case of RH, Jocketty got lucky to get the production he did out of RH because there is no reason at all to believe he should have performed as well as he did.

There is no reason to believe that RH would have played as well as he did because it didn't fit into the type of information that you subscribe to. There is nothing wrong with that, but you have to realize that a guy like Walt may subscribe to a completely different set of information than you do. And to be honest I think I am going to side with a guy whose teams are making the playoffs over 50% of the time.

I don't know what type of information that Walt uses. I would imagine its a combination of things that aren't available to the general public. I also know that that information differs from what JoJo feels is pertinent. Does that mean Walt is wrong and JoJo is right? Does that mean RH was just pure luck? Or was there something that Walt and his advisers saw that predicted an improved performance from Ramon?

Projections are nice and all but the reality is you can't predict what human beings will do. You can analyze it, study it, document it, and then all of a sudden they will do something that surprises you.

jojo
10-07-2010, 09:51 AM
I also know that that information differs from what JoJo feels is pertinent.

That's actually not a correct assumption concerning scouting (see signature) and truthfully, no one knows what information Jocketty uses.



Projections are nice and all but the reality is you can't predict what human beings will do. You can analyze it, study it, document it, and then all of a sudden they will do something that surprises you.

They correlate very well to human behavior and generally nailed RH during his previous three seasons. For instance, here's what Pecota had to say about RH during 2007-2009:

2007 Pecota: .277/.334/.447; Actual: .258/.333/.382
2008 Pecota: .262/.327/.399; Actual: .257/.308/.406
2009 Pecota: .259/.318/.396; Actual: .258/.336/.362

But ya, projection systems are pretty lousy at predicting random swings in things like BABIP. Then again they're not really trying to predict unrepeatable things.

Scrap Irony
10-07-2010, 09:52 AM
Thats the holdup. And I don't mean to stir anyone up...but there are some on here who judge solely by the "information at hand" at the time of a transaction and some who judge by the results on the field.

When those 2 paths veer in opposite directions, thats when these arguments start.

How can you gauge the effectiveness of a move (or a GM) if you don't have all the information at hand? Wouldn't that make your premise flawed to begin with?

westofyou
10-07-2010, 10:05 AM
Meanwhile in St. Louis

http://www.stltoday.com/sports/baseball/professional/article_6e24edb8-d196-11df-9e58-00127992bc8b.html



renomike99: Joe, thanks as always for the chats. Last week you mentioned what I believe was the most crucial weaknesses in the 2010 Cardinals: an anemic bench. In contrast to this year, during the Jockety era the Cardinal bench was generally a team strength. However, there was nothing like Scott Spezio, So Taguchi, or Shawon Dunston on the 2010 team. The lack of options off of the bench definitely hindered the way TLR could manage games.

In your opinion, did the 2010 Cardinals wind up with a weak bench by design or by accident? And, do you sense that the Cardinals intend to address this weakness in 2011? It sure seems to me that the 2010 Cardinals conducted themselves like a "sabermetric team". That is, they spent too much money on "impact" regulars and starting pitchers, and no where near enough money on quality bench players. Your thoughts.

bucksfan2
10-07-2010, 10:10 AM
That's actually not a correct assumption concerning scouting (see signature) and truthfully, no one knows what information Jocketty uses.




They correlate very well to human behavior and generally nailed RH during his previous three seasons. For instance, here's what Pecota had to say about RH during 2007-2009:

2007 Pecota: .277/.334/.447; Actual: .258/.333/.382
2008 Pecota: .262/.327/.399; Actual: .257/.308/.406
2009 Pecota: .259/.318/.396; Actual: .258/.336/.362

But ya, projection systems are pretty lousy at predicting random swings in things like BABIP. Then again they're not really trying to predict unrepeatable things.

What about 2010?

Scrap Irony
10-07-2010, 10:11 AM
That's actually not a correct assumption concerning scouting (see signature) and truthfully, no one knows what information Jocketty uses.




They correlate very well to human behavior and generally nailed RH during his previous three seasons. For instance, here's what Pecota had to say about RH during 2007-2009:

2007 Pecota: .277/.334/.447; Actual: .258/.333/.382
2008 Pecota: .262/.327/.399; Actual: .257/.308/.406
2009 Pecota: .259/.318/.396; Actual: .258/.336/.362

But ya, projection systems are pretty lousy at predicting random swings in things like BABIP. Then again they're not really trying to predict unrepeatable things.

Why use projections at all, especialy if you can use the real-world numbers? What sense does it make to use something that, at best, fractionally correlates to real world production when the real world production is right there staring you in the face?

jojo
10-07-2010, 11:49 AM
What about 2010?

We already know he outperformed his 2010 projection significantly.

bucksfan2
10-07-2010, 12:04 PM
We already know he outperformed his 2010 projection significantly.

Why give the data for three years when the 4th year proved to be inaccurate?

dougdirt
10-07-2010, 12:23 PM
There is no reason to believe that RH would have played as well as he did because it didn't fit into the type of information that you subscribe to. There is nothing wrong with that, but you have to realize that a guy like Walt may subscribe to a completely different set of information than you do. And to be honest I think I am going to side with a guy whose teams are making the playoffs over 50% of the time.


What kind of information does Walt have that we don't? Outside of Walt showing RH how to cheat, I can't think of something that Walt truly has access to that we don't in terms of projecting a 12 year MLB vet that we don't. Scouting wise, we can see those things. Numbers wise, we can see those things. It is one thing if Jocketty has information that we don't on a guy with very little to no MLB experience. Then things like scouting and background info can really play a role into him projecting things better than 'us'. But when its a guy who has been in the major leagues for 12 years, he really isn't privy to more information than we are in terms of how to project what a guy is going to do short of injury status, and I think we all knew that RH was aching last year and probably was going to be healthy this year.

jojo
10-07-2010, 12:38 PM
Why give the data for three years when the 4th year proved to be inaccurate?

Since BP hasn't made the 2010 Pecota numbers free yet, it's probably not kosher to post them. Generally his 2010 projection was not that different than the 2008 projection.

Scrap Irony
10-07-2010, 01:22 PM
What kind of information does Walt have that we don't? Outside of Walt showing RH how to cheat, I can't think of something that Walt truly has access to that we don't in terms of projecting a 12 year MLB vet that we don't. Scouting wise, we can see those things. Numbers wise, we can see those things. It is one thing if Jocketty has information that we don't on a guy with very little to no MLB experience. Then things like scouting and background info can really play a role into him projecting things better than 'us'. But when its a guy who has been in the major leagues for 12 years, he really isn't privy to more information than we are in terms of how to project what a guy is going to do short of injury status, and I think we all knew that RH was aching last year and probably was going to be healthy this year.

Oh, come on, doug. We don't know what he has, but we do know he has all kinds of access to information we don't.

We do know, from past articles on the subject, that each team guards its numbers like crazy and won't give those out to anyone.

We do know he has access to hundreds of scouting reports that we, as fans, do not. Not only can he see those scouting reports, he can also talk to opposing managers, assistant coaches, GMs, and former managers, coaches, and GMs; we will likely never hear those conversations.

We also know that Walt obviously has access to players that we don't, so he gets information from them we don't.

Fwiw, I also disagree with your assessment of Hernandez's health and the projecton systems. (They assumed Hernandez to have been healthy in 2009; therefore, their numbers were probably skewed. Add in the plan of platooning Hanigan and Ramon and perhaps we can get at least part of the way toward figuring out why Ramon was a good choice to be Red catcher.)

westofyou
10-07-2010, 01:24 PM
What kind of information does Walt have that we don't? Life experience in the profession?

bucksfan2
10-07-2010, 01:28 PM
What kind of information does Walt have that we don't? Outside of Walt showing RH how to cheat, I can't think of something that Walt truly has access to that we don't in terms of projecting a 12 year MLB vet that we don't. Scouting wise, we can see those things. Numbers wise, we can see those things. It is one thing if Jocketty has information that we don't on a guy with very little to no MLB experience. Then things like scouting and background info can really play a role into him projecting things better than 'us'. But when its a guy who has been in the major leagues for 12 years, he really isn't privy to more information than we are in terms of how to project what a guy is going to do short of injury status, and I think we all knew that RH was aching last year and probably was going to be healthy this year.

If we all knew that RH was aching last year and was going to be healthy this season why wasn't there an adjustment in the projections? It would seem to me that that would be common sense.

Actually injury status could be a huge factor. I remember a couple of years ago when Jerry Hariston Jr. was signed and he spoke about finally being healthy. He said that it was finally figured out that his back pain was caused by a broken rib. That information wasn't made public until long after he signed with the Reds. And just by looking at the production a healthy JHJ was a pretty good signing for the Reds.

Also it could be a mechanical issue with Ramon's swing that caused a drop off in his production. Or maybe Walt and his scouts saw Ramon start to tire as the season went along and noted that they wouldn't need him to catch as many games as he had in the past. There are numerous things that could have been useful to the Reds organization that aren't readily available to the general public.

Brutus
10-07-2010, 01:29 PM
What kind of information does Walt have that we don't? Outside of Walt showing RH how to cheat, I can't think of something that Walt truly has access to that we don't in terms of projecting a 12 year MLB vet that we don't. Scouting wise, we can see those things. Numbers wise, we can see those things. It is one thing if Jocketty has information that we don't on a guy with very little to no MLB experience. Then things like scouting and background info can really play a role into him projecting things better than 'us'. But when its a guy who has been in the major leagues for 12 years, he really isn't privy to more information than we are in terms of how to project what a guy is going to do short of injury status, and I think we all knew that RH was aching last year and probably was going to be healthy this year.

Disagree.

We have access to numbers, but we don't have access to all the numbers and we certainly don't have access to the multi-million dollar cost analysis they do with advanced numbers. For instance, we get the UZR on Fangraphs, but by Mitchell Lichman's own admission, a more thorough version of UZR is used by clubs.

We may have access to scouting with our own eyes, but we don't have access to the advanced reports by people that are trained to pick up on things we are not. And that's no shot at you because you watch a lot of players and have been trying to make a living scouting players in the minors, but obviously they're going to see things we're not.

We don't have access to medical records. We don't have access to the clubhouse and know what some things happen down there on a daily basis. We don't know when a player opts for a change in bat size. We often won't see if a very slight change in hand position drastically increases ability to hit the baseball.

There are too many things we cannot account for that the front office can. We have access to information, enough to make educated guesses and debate intelligently. Make no mistake, I'm not saying we don't have anything to go by. We definitely do. But we have nowhere near the complete picture.

jojo
10-07-2010, 01:48 PM
Actually injury status could be a huge factor. I remember a couple of years ago when Jerry Hariston Jr. was signed and he spoke about finally being healthy. He said that it was finally figured out that his back pain was caused by a broken rib. That information wasn't made public until long after he signed with the Reds. And just by looking at the production a healthy JHJ was a pretty good signing for the Reds.

But looking at the Hairston over the next 900+ PAs during 2009-2010, one might think Krivsky should've also bought a lottery ticket on the day Hairston signed.

RedsManRick
10-07-2010, 02:00 PM
There's a really interesting parallel in this conversation to the debate going on in sabermetric circles about the versions of WAR used by Fangraphs and Baseball-Reference for pitchers. In short, there's a portion of pitching performance related to batted ball quality that we just aren't very good at measuring yet.

Fangraphs bases there pitcher WAR on FIP, stating that while it knows it will miss based on pitchers who have a particular ability to induce weak contacts (and on the Matt Belisle's of the world who don't), it would rather stick to what it "knows", that FIP is based on those things which pitcher's control and which, in the long run, correlates very strongly with runs allowed.

By contrast, Baseball-Reference works backwards from the end results, runs allowed, and applies a series of adjustments to try and filter out the portion of those runs for which the pitcher cannot be held responsible.

Neither method is right. The "pure" approach leaves out information that certainly matters, but which is hard to measure. The "true" approach is based fully in the outcomes, but includes stuff that it probably shouldn't.

In the end, it is what it is. There is no right answer. We have a few ways to go about evaluating which each have their merits. We make the best of it and move on.

I hope we can all agree that, at minimum, Jocketty has taken what he inherited, shepherded the good stuff and supplemented it where he felt necessary. The result is a 2010 playoffs appearance. What does this mean for 2011 and beyond? We'll see. But as fortuitous as he may have been both in St. Louis and here, I think it would be hard to make an argument that he's a "bad" GM on balance. Could he improve in certain places in his process, I'm sure he could. As could every single GM. But we really don't know what that process looks like in any detail, so all of our debates are rooted largely in speculation.

I'm more confident in our current front office than I've been in any front office in memory. And while I'll continue to bemoan certain things, I'm happy for that.

dougdirt
10-07-2010, 02:28 PM
Life experience in the profession?

And what about that life experience gives him the ability to know when a guy is going to do better? If he actually had said ability, would he have signed Aaron Miles? Of course not. Jocketty made a good decision to bring back RH. He however couldn't have truly been of the idea that he would perform at the level that he actually did, because there simply was nothing to actually suggest it. Jocketty and the Reds don't have some magical formula that is beyond the capabilities of everyone else to grasp. He has very similar information that we do on a guy like RH.

westofyou
10-07-2010, 02:31 PM
And what about that life experience gives him the ability to know when a guy is going to do better? If he actually had said ability, would he have signed Aaron Miles? Of course not. Jocketty made a good decision to bring back RH. He however couldn't have truly been of the idea that he would perform at the level that he actually did, because there simply was nothing to actually suggest it. Jocketty and the Reds don't have some magical formula that is beyond the capabilities of everyone else to grasp. He has very similar information that we do on a guy like RH.

When you have lived a little get back to me, until then I'll take your arrogance as a sign of inexperience.

dougdirt
10-07-2010, 02:35 PM
We may have access to scouting with our own eyes, but we don't have access to the advanced reports by people that are trained to pick up on things we are not. And that's no shot at you because you watch a lot of players and have been trying to make a living scouting players in the minors, but obviously they're going to see things we're not.
No shot taken at all. I know what I am and what I am not. The thing is though, if something changed with Ramon Hernandez, we would have heard about it by now.



We don't have access to medical records. We don't have access to the clubhouse and know what some things happen down there on a daily basis. We don't know when a player opts for a change in bat size. We often won't see if a very slight change in hand position drastically increases ability to hit the baseball.
We knew he was hurt last season somewhat. We knew that he was likely to be healthy this season, at least to start out, because he had all winter to rest up and heal. As for the hand position change, that is something we would have picked up on throughout the season. Now, as I have said earlier in the post, something that should be looked at further, is what he did on the pitches he began to chase this season that he didn't do in the past. His IsoP certainly increased this year. Was that due to the health? Was it due to his chasing pitches and getting more power on such pitches? Still, I don't think in this case RH drastically changed his ability to hit the ball. As noted, he was getting infield hits at a higher rate than Drew Stubbs was. That isn't a skill in his case. That was luck. The main thing is the little bit of extra power he had this year than last and what led to it.

dougdirt
10-07-2010, 02:37 PM
When you have lived a little get back to me, until then I'll take your arrogance as a sign of inexperience.

Ah, yes, because I am young I can't possibly suggest that someone who is older did something other than be correct. You often use this type of response toward me and it really is getting old. If you aren't actually going to further the conversation or use something of actual value to debate my points, don't respond. Simply suggesting that I am wrong because I am young does nothing at all for the conversation of this board.

westofyou
10-07-2010, 02:42 PM
Ah, yes, because I am young I can't possibly suggest that someone who is older did something other than be correct. You often use this type of response toward me and it really is getting old. If you aren't actually going to further the conversation or use something of actual value to debate my points, don't respond. Simply suggesting that I am wrong because I am young does nothing at all for the conversation of this board.

I'm suggesting that life experience in his workplace drives decision making in manner that you might not appreciate because you are young. I believe it does and I'm willing to admit it, I'm also willing to acknowledge that I might not have all the facts or know all the answers whereas I don't get that from your world view of the game.

I'll respond to whatever I want to BTW.

bucksfan2
10-07-2010, 02:45 PM
By contrast, Baseball-Reference works backwards from the end results, runs allowed, and applies a series of adjustments to try and filter out the portion of those runs for which the pitcher cannot be held responsible.

I am cherry picking right here.

I am not a big fan of WAR. I think it is useful to compare players but I also think it has some serious flaws. But aside for that I do find this method of attaining this stat interesting. To me it sounds like a stock broker or adviser taking the past information, compiling all of it, then saying stock XXX was a great buy back in April. Or over the past 6 months stock XXX was better than stock ZZZ.

In essence it isn't predictive at all in nature. It gives you a decent snap shot of what happened in the past but is very murky as to what will happen in the future. Going to back to the stock example, stock XXX may have had a better run but stock ZZZ is the better stock. There may be a lot of pertinent reasons for one out performing over a specific time.

I guess what I am getting at is we really don't know enough key information going forward to declare a signing lucky or unlucky. A player may have been injured, having marital problems, having family issues, etc. All these factors are pretty much are guarded closely by an organization.

dougdirt
10-07-2010, 03:01 PM
I'm suggesting that life experience in his workplace drives decision making in manner that you might not appreciate because you are young. I believe it does and I'm willing to admit it, I'm also willing to acknowledge that I might not have all the facts or know all the answers whereas I don't get that from your world view of the game.

I'll respond to whatever I want to BTW.

I am not saying the decision was bad. It wasn't. I believe I have said that multiple times within the thread. What I am suggesting is that if Jocketty believed he would get the type of production from RH that he actually got, he was very likely following some wishful thinking because there isn't much out there to suggest it was going to happen at all since most of the additional production came from an incredible infield hit rate (from a 34 year old catcher nonetheless).