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Thread: "Billy Hamilton and other really fast guys"

  1. #61
    Box of Frogs edabbs44's Avatar
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    Re: "Billy Hamilton and other really fast guys"

    Quote Originally Posted by kaldaniels View Post
    I was just wondering if the OBP "wave" will trickle down to the little leagues. What if one of the next generation of kids is brought up knowing the importance of a walk. When I played it was just try to hit the ball as hard as you can. It would be interesting to see what the major leagues would be like if all the players had been brought up enlightened about getting on base.
    When I was playing, we would typically hit .400-.500 in a season in little league. Even the better kids in HS were in that range as well. Why walk if you are putting up numbers like that?

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  3. #62
    I don't want to grow up Red Raindog's Avatar
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    Re: "Billy Hamilton and other really fast guys"

    Quote Originally Posted by edabbs44 View Post
    When I was playing, we would typically hit .400-.500 in a season in little league. Even the better kids in HS were in that range as well. Why walk if you are putting up numbers like that?
    Heh -- your post reminded me that when I played at that level I seemed to specialize in getting hit by pitches --- one game I got hit three times!

    I got to pitch the next time we played them and got to face one of the two pitchers that day that hit me -- I'd told him I was going to pay him back so he was ready when I drilled him on the hip -- he got me with a soft curve -- I didn't have a soft curve -- we're still friends 45+ years later
    The older I get - the better I was

    and yes - I hate the Cardinals (Reds fan since 1958)

  4. #63
    Member 757690's Avatar
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    Re: "Billy Hamilton and other really fast guys"

    Quote Originally Posted by scott91575 View Post
    It has changed but is not the only reason for the reduction in speed players. Playing surface played a major role. Stealing bases on astro turf was a major advantage vs grass. In 1982, 38% of the stadiums had artificial turf (50% of NL teams had artificial turf, and of course there was no interleague play...which led to the belief that AL teams played for the 3 run homer while NL teams were based on stealing bases). Today, it's 7% and Tropicana Field has all dirt base paths. This is probably the greatest factor in the lower emphasis on speed players.
    Bob Howsam understood this, and made the big 1972 trade to take advantage of the new artificial turf at Riverfront. He sent slow guys, Lee May and Tommy Helms to Houston, for speedsters Joe Morgan, Cesar Geronimo, Ed Armbruster, and pitcher Jack Billingham. Seems like it worked
    "Man, the pitch looks fast, even in slow motion." Thom Brennaman on Chapman's fastball.

  5. #64
    RaisorZone Raisor's Avatar
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    Re: "Billy Hamilton and other really fast guys"

    This is an older article by Sheehan, and the math has changed some, but....


    http://www.baseballprospectus.com/ar...articleid=2607

    Teams will often use their best base stealers at the top of the lineup, even players with low on-base percentages, in front of their most powerful batters. In fact, they should be using those players lower in the lineup, in front of their least powerful hitters. Risking an out to advance from first base to second base is much more important when the guy at the plate can't get the runner home from first base.
    The vaunted secondary effects of stealing bases--distracting the pitcher, putting pressure on the defense--do not appear to exist. In fact, most secondary effects argue in favor of keeping the runner of first base. A runner on first is more disruptive to a defense, with the first baseman holding and the second baseman cheating towards second for a double play, than a runner on second. Additionally, studies show that stolen-base attempts negatively impact the performance of the batter at the plate, presumably due to hitters getting themselves into negative counts by taking pitches or swinging at bad balls to protect the runner.
    "But I do know Joey's sister indirectly (or foster sister) and I have heard stories of Joey being into shopping, designer wear, fancy coffees, and pedicures."

  6. #65
    breath westofyou's Avatar
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    Re: "Billy Hamilton and other really fast guys"

    Quote Originally Posted by Raisor View Post
    This is an older article by Sheehan, and the math has changed some, but....


    http://www.baseballprospectus.com/ar...articleid=2607
    Poor batter, has a player trying to create havoc and unsettle the defense.

    I get behind steals having a place in the game, I get behind that place being defined as being the "right" time and the "wrong" time, I get behind the fact that only some guys need to steal.

    I don't get behind station to station baseball as a pure percentage move 100% of the time.

    The first team that ever had my full attention was the 72 Tigers, station to station at its finest

    Code:
    SEASON
    1969-2012
    CAUGHT STEALING displayed only--not a sorting criteria
    
    STOLEN BASES                  YEAR     SB       CS     
    1    Tigers                   1972       17       21   
    2    Pirates                  1973       23       30   
    T3   Mets                     1994       25       26   
    T3   Indians                  1970       25       36   
    5    Mets                     1973       27       22   
    T6   Blue Jays                1978       28       52   
    T6   Tigers                   1973       28       30   
    8    Tigers                   1970       29       30   
    T9   Red Sox                  1983       30       26   
    T9   Cubs                     1969       30       32

  7. #66
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    Re: "Billy Hamilton and other really fast guys"

    Quote Originally Posted by Raisor View Post
    This is an older article by Sheehan, and the math has changed some, but....


    http://www.baseballprospectus.com/ar...articleid=2607
    Ok, per that reasoning, tell hitters not to take pitches just so the runner can steal. Problem solved.

    The main issue with this calculation is it doesn't take into account the first pitch of a count because it's impossible to steal a base before the batter sees the first pitch. Therefore times when the runner attempts to steal on the first pitch and the batter hits the ball are not included (or any time the runner is going and the batter hits the ball). You also have to take into account hit and run attempts, which certainly negatively affects the batter. If the batter doesn't hit the ball not only is he put in a worse count than he should have been (most likely because he attempted to hit a ball out of the strike zone) but it shows up as a stolen base attempt. They only way to truly find the stats is to determine the success of a batter when the runner has the green light, and it's not a hit and run. Stats cannot take that into account, and therefore the statistics are flawed.

    The analysis is just way too simplistic and one of the things I hate when I see blind statistics used. So much of that is analysis in a vacuum and I can't go into all of it. Plus, the numbers have not just changed a bit. They have actually dramatically changed since 2004. I forget the exact number now, but stealing base success rate benefit is now something like 66% (I think there is a fangraphs article on this). Way different than the 75% claimed in the article.

    BTW...when looking at ERT you have to take into account deltas because with zero men on you can still score, and then there is the expectancy of scoring at all vs. not scoring any runs which are different numbers. That would of course lead to the debate of the importance of scoring more runs but always scoring in bunches vs. scoring a little less but more consistently. Yet I will stay away from that.

    edit: I will note the same thing I stated before. It will all come down to Hamilton getting on base. If he can get on a base at a good rate, he should be at the top of the order. If it's poor, he shouldn't. Basestealing should not be the main reason he is put at any spot in the order, be it first to "create havoc" or 7th so he is not stealing in front of Votto.
    Last edited by scott91575; 02-24-2013 at 01:06 PM.

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    Re: "Billy Hamilton and other really fast guys"

    I will just further add, you cannot apply league wide stats to extreme examples. When it comes to basestealing, there is pretty much no more of an extreme example than Billy Hamilton. The only thing league wide stats tell us is basestealing should not be a blindly followed philosophy used with all players.

  10. #68
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    Re: "Billy Hamilton and other really fast guys"

    Quote Originally Posted by Raisor View Post
    This is an older article by Sheehan, and the math has changed some, but....


    http://www.baseballprospectus.com/ar...articleid=2607
    First, he uses data from 2003, the height of the power and scoring explosion. SB's, obviously were less valuable then. With scoring down over a run a game and power down especially, SB's have more value.

    Second, his charts of teams that stole lots of bases, and their overall run production, and of teams that were high scoring teams and their SB propensity, are pretty much meaningless. They tell us nothing. If he had turned that into one of my logic or stat classes, I would have failed him.

    The first chart only tells us that teams that use SB's usually don't have powerful offenses. It doesn't tells us what their production would be if they didn't steal bases. Same with the second chart. If one wanted to know the effect that SB's have on a teams's production, the only accurate way is to chart their production in years that they do steal a bunch against years where the same team, with the same players, don't steal a bunch of bases. Of course that's impossible.

    Third, having a speedy leadoff hitter is better than having him in the middle of the lineup, because he will be in scoring postion when your best hitters are at the plate. Then middle of the lineup hitters not only hit for more power, they just hit better overall.

    Last season, the bottom the Reds lineup had 270 singles. The middle of the lineup, 346. That's 76 more hits. That's why you want your speedy leadoff hitter hitting in front of your best hitters.
    Last edited by 757690; 02-24-2013 at 05:07 PM.
    "Man, the pitch looks fast, even in slow motion." Thom Brennaman on Chapman's fastball.

  11. #69
    RaisorZone Raisor's Avatar
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    Re: "Billy Hamilton and other really fast guys"

    Our buddy SteelSD used to use something he called "Speed Adjusted OPS"

    Here's his formula

    SAOBP
    (Hits + BB + HBP - CS)/TPA

    SASLG
    (Total Bases + SB - CS)/AB

    In the minors last year, Hamilton had an impressive .410 OBP

    When you adjust his OBP for speed, it's corrected to .347.

    Last year he had a SLG of .420.

    When you adjust for speed, it's corrected to .650

    Dude's a power hitting middle of the order guy.

    "But I do know Joey's sister indirectly (or foster sister) and I have heard stories of Joey being into shopping, designer wear, fancy coffees, and pedicures."

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  13. #70
    Member 757690's Avatar
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    Re: "Billy Hamilton and other really fast guys"

    Quote Originally Posted by Raisor View Post
    Our buddy SteelSD used to use something he called "Speed Adjusted OPS"

    Here's his formula

    SAOBP
    (Hits + BB + HBP - CS)/TPA

    SASLG
    (Total Bases + SB - CS)/AB

    In the minors last year, Hamilton had an impressive .410 OBP

    When you adjust his OBP for speed, it's corrected to .347.

    Last year he had a SLG of .420.

    When you adjust for speed, it's corrected to .650

    Dude's a power hitting middle of the order guy.

    I always did like Steel's work on this. Of course, the true value of a slugging percentage is how well you advance runners, not putting yourself in scoring position, but you know that, hence your wink at the end.

    I do agree that it's smart to have a speedy guy hitting fifth or sixth, for the reasons your mentioned. I just think you want your best speedy guy leading off. I remember the Cards would bat Willie McGee in the fifth slot and that worked quite well.
    "Man, the pitch looks fast, even in slow motion." Thom Brennaman on Chapman's fastball.

  14. #71
    RaisorZone Raisor's Avatar
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    Re: "Billy Hamilton and other really fast guys"

    The question is, what does Hamilton need to OBP to make the CS's ok?

    Last year's CS numbers had the net effect of knocking his OBP down 60-70 points.
    "But I do know Joey's sister indirectly (or foster sister) and I have heard stories of Joey being into shopping, designer wear, fancy coffees, and pedicures."

  15. #72
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    Re: "Billy Hamilton and other really fast guys"

    If Hamilton steals second while Phillips is up and, subsequently, Phillips makes an out while failing to advance him; does Slidin' Billy race back to first so that they can't pitch around Votto?
    Zero chance the Reds miss the playoffs!

  16. #73
    Member 757690's Avatar
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    Re: "Billy Hamilton and other really fast guys"

    Quote Originally Posted by Raisor View Post
    The question is, what does Hamilton need to OBP to make the CS's ok?

    Last year's CS numbers had the net effect of knocking his OBP down 60-70 points.
    It's not that simple. Those 155 SB add value to his OPB. A .347 OPB in which the batter is at second base 155 more times is going to score more runs than a .347 OPB in which the batter stays at first every time.

    I have no idea how to figure it out, but if the batter is stealing at an 80% rate, that would logically increase his overall production.
    "Man, the pitch looks fast, even in slow motion." Thom Brennaman on Chapman's fastball.

  17. #74
    RaisorZone Raisor's Avatar
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    Re: "Billy Hamilton and other really fast guys"

    Quote Originally Posted by 757690 View Post
    It's not that simple. Those 155 SB add value to his OPB. A .347 OPB in which the batter is at second base 155 more times is going to score more runs than a .347 OPB in which the batter stays at first every time.

    .
    But that's not the question.

    Is the .347 OBP being on second better than the .405 being on first?
    "But I do know Joey's sister indirectly (or foster sister) and I have heard stories of Joey being into shopping, designer wear, fancy coffees, and pedicures."

  18. #75
    Charlie Brown All-Star IslandRed's Avatar
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    Re: "Billy Hamilton and other really fast guys"

    Quote Originally Posted by 757690 View Post
    Runs scoring is almost identical these days to the 70's and 80's. From 1977-1987, the NL averaged 4.12 runs a game. The past two years have averages 4.17.
    The run-scoring environment is similar, but a higher percentage of the runs come as a result of home runs these days.

    And that shouldn't be surprising. As others have pointed out, in the '70s and '80s, many teams played on Astroturf. Turf put a premium on defensive speed. Speedy defenders usually aren't power hitters too, so unlike most of today's lineups, there wasn't home-run power all the way through the order. So teams had to find ways to score beyond sitting around waiting for the dinger, and the turf gave basestealers a fast track. It's all connected.
    Not all who wander are lost


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