Some good points there....very good. And some good numbers. And comparing the value added of moving up runners with the "risk" of losing value through a double play I think is also a fair comparison.
We have to go back to the original pecking order.
We agree that strikeouts and a high strikeout rate are good for a pitcher and relatively better outs than flyouts, groundouts etc...(taken on a whole). The question then is: Is there enough to be gained from "the double play" (or the groundout) on a large scale to say that it is a better out on a whole than the strikeout?
The key lies in that pecking order: K > GO > FO > LO etc. ... The double play and any other intangibles would need to be factored in here. If after factoring in intangibles we still say that on a large scale we like the K as the best out for the pitcher (defense). Then it would have to be true that on a large scale the K is the worst out for a hitter (offense).
Originally Posted by SteelSD
A Strikeout also has no chance of causing a Double Play. There were 3784 baserunners erased in 2004 because of balls hit into play. Excluding Outs of choice (Sac Bunts), there were 3977 Runners advanced by balls hit into play in 2004 using ESPN's "Productive Outs" tracking.
Considering that losing a baserunner to a Double Play is actually a far worse event than any other Out event (due to the nature of causing BOTH an Out AND erasing a base), your contention that Strikeouts are far worse events than Outs created on balls hit into play is a non-starter. Also, considering the fact that many runners advanced on non-K Outs would have scored from their original basepath positions on the following event, it's a wash at best.
Sean Casey produced 18 "Productive Outs" in 2004. He erased 16 Runners already on base by hitting into Double Plays. Considering that those 16 GIDP erased gains already posted AND knowing that Outs are more valuable than bases, what we're left with is net negative event value.
Simply put, the Outs and Bases erased by Casey's GIDP's were more valuable to the Reds than the random bases gained by Out-event balls hit into play.