I'll just pick this...
"A good manager needs to understand how and when to use many different approaches to understanding the game. "
Baker uses 1 approch, and that's his own. SABR looks to maximize production through a verity of different approaches. It says, use good RP during high leverage situations, and bad ones when the games situation isn't important. (DBacks/Indians). It says, hit pitcher 8th if the 9th batter is worse (Kendell). It says, put higher OBP skills at the top of the order so less outs will be made and better hitter will get more chances to hit. It says, fielding is undervalued in guys like Everett where he might cost 1 Win on offense but +2.5 on defense. Or say SB's are only worth it if it occurs at a certain rate. It's figuring out the difference between Griffey and BP as a baserunner. Or determining that Hamilton has one of the best arms in the game (Yes, we see that it's good, but stats prove it). It says, that Jeter is a poor defender no matter how many jump thows and stand diving he does. ETC. (It doesn't really "say" that stuff, but these are general assertions)
SABR stats is not everything, it's just a tool. But it's becoming better every year as new stats and improved stats come out. What do you mean they'll get "disproved"? So you take Batting Average and all it's crazy assertions -Read the Article- and can't disprove that? Stats are just a device that tries to measure something. Some are obviously better than others for overall value, but they can't be disproven. I might like a stat that looks at how the batter can hit for power, average, on base, have speed, run well, field well relative to position, how they do in important situations, etc, and sum them up into 1 number that describes how many Wins that player was worth. Or You can take Batting Average to rank players, a stat that doesn't measure power, speed, on base skills, and also depends on opposing fielders, ballpark, opposing pitching. SABR trys to quantify what happens on the field, and provide a reference for decision making.
"Dusty manages from his heart" or w/e crap they are saying is just not going to cut it. Things need to be decided from a rational and scientific based standpoint, along with the "heart". When I say SABR will be mainstream, I mean it will not be thought of as this "guy living in the basement" type idea (Peter Gammons). It will be incorporated into decisions as another option or integrated into an option for managers and baseball people.
This is a great time to bring up this article....
I just hope people can actually read the entire thing. It's a usual long post by a great blogger. He's a fantastic baseball writer.
Here's a sample......
Some of this should be obvious. Batting average? It’s ridiculous. Preposterous. Imagine that no one had ever come up with batting average before … and then someone on a blog came up with with this idea:
Blogger: I have come up with a new statistic. It involves balls put in play. I call it batting average.
Establishment: Great! How’s it work?
B: See, what we’ll do is, we’ll take the number of hits that the batter has and divide it by the number of at-bats that he has in order to determine how often he gets a hit.
E: That sounds like on-base percentage. What’s the difference?
B: Well, it’s all in what you call “at-bats” For one thing, we don’t count walks.
E: What do you mean you don’t count walks?
B: They don’t count. We take plate appearances and subtract walks. They never happened.
E: How can a walk never happen?
B: It just doesn’t.
E: Aren’t walks good things? Like in Little League, we always say “Walk’s as good as a hit.”
B: I hate walks. They’re gone. So let’s say a guy comes to the plate 12 times, and he gets four hits and walks twice …
E: Right … that’s a .500 on-base percentage.
B: Exactly, but if you just subtract the walks, you will see that he has a .400 batting average.
E: Um, OK.
B: But there are other things. If you hit a fly ball, and someone tags up and scores a run, that does not count as an at-bat.
E: Why not?
B: Because you are sacrificing yourself for the betterment of the team? I call it a sacrifice fly. Get it?
E: Well, what are you sacrificing if it doesn’t even count against your stats?
B: You just are, OK?
E: What if you hit a ground ball and the runner scores.
B: How’s that?
E: Let’s say the infield’s back and a guy hits a ground ball to get the run in. How do you score that?
B: No, that’s not a sacrifice fly.
E Why not? Doesn’t that accomplish the same thing?
B: It just isn’t. Come on, pay attention. What’s it called. Sacrifice FLY? Hello! He didn’t hit a fly ball.
E: It just seems to me …
B: Sacrifice bunts also do not count as at-bats. And when you get hit by a pitch … doesn’t count.
E You don’t get any statistical notice for getting hit by a pitch?
B: Like it never happened.
E: I’m afraid to ask this: What happens if you reach on an error.
B: That’s the beauty of this system. According to my new batting average, you’re out.
E: But you’re not really out.
B: I know. Isn’t it great?
E: Why does this have to be so complicated?
B: It’s batting average! It will take over the world!