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Thread: "Anatomy of Brandon Phillips, RBI machine"

  1. #31
    Et tu, Brutus? Brutus's Avatar
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    Re: "Anatomy of Brandon Phillips, RBI machine"

    The number of RBIs for Philllips has not entirely been on account of an increased number of baserunners on base ahead of him.

    % of runners on base that have scored with Phillips batting:

    2011: 16%
    2012: 16%
    2013: 22%
    "No matter how good you are, you're going to lose one-third of your games. No matter how bad you are you're going to win one-third of your games. It's the other third that makes the difference." ~Tommy Lasorda

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  3. #32
    It's showtime! RedEye's Avatar
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    Re: "Anatomy of Brandon Phillips, RBI machine"

    Quote Originally Posted by bucksfan2 View Post
    I think there is still value in the RBI. Particularly when there is a disparity between what a player does when he has a chance to produce runs as opposed to when the bases are empty. I remember when Ryan Howard would have insane RBI numbers when you consider that he struck out 25-30% of the time.
    I believe the research on the topic suggests that there is historically relatively little variance between what a guy does with runners on base and what he does with no one on base. It's possible to have a season where a guy hits well with RISP, but it is probably more derived from luck than any sort of skill.

    That said, I believe Bill James published something recently that walked back his original stance on "clutch" hitting, admitting that in certain cases, there have been players who do show the ability to hit better in high leverage circumstances. Again, though, these were very specific players and it is not a rule that is generalizable across most baseball skill sets.

    Basically, a good hitter is a good hitter, regardless of the situation, but not everyone can get on base 40% of the time.
    "Iíll kind of have a foot on the back of my own butt. Thatís just how I do things.Ē -- Bryan Price, 10/22/2013

  4. #33
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    Re: "Anatomy of Brandon Phillips, RBI machine"

    Quote Originally Posted by Brutus View Post
    The number of RBIs for Philllips has not entirely been on account of an increased number of baserunners on base ahead of him.

    % of runners on base that have scored with Phillips batting:

    2011: 16%
    2012: 16%
    2013: 22%
    Fair enough. But regardless of the %, he would have more RBI in any of these seasons where there are more base runners. Right?
    "Iíll kind of have a foot on the back of my own butt. Thatís just how I do things.Ē -- Bryan Price, 10/22/2013

  5. #34
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    Re: "Anatomy of Brandon Phillips, RBI machine"

    Quote Originally Posted by RedEye View Post
    Fair enough. But regardless of the %, he would have more RBI in any of these seasons where there are more base runners. Right?
    Most certainly.

    In 2011, he was having at least one runner on base for every 2.3 plate appearances. Last year it was one for every 2.1 plate appearances. This season, so far, he's having a runner on base once every 1.1 plate appearance.

    So if all things were equal, he'd have more RBI's at his similar, previous rates. But in this case, assuming all those extra RBIs are simply a product of more baserunners is misleading and incorrect. He is, in fact, driving them in at a higher rate thus far on top of having more opportunities.
    "No matter how good you are, you're going to lose one-third of your games. No matter how bad you are you're going to win one-third of your games. It's the other third that makes the difference." ~Tommy Lasorda

  6. #35
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    Re: "Anatomy of Brandon Phillips, RBI machine"

    Quote Originally Posted by RedEye View Post
    Do the stats bear this out? Is he a better hitter in the cleanup slot, or is it just random variance? Honest question, I don't doubt what you are saying.
    Got his best BA, OB and SLG of any lineup slot where he has 500+ ABs. Here's the numbers: http://www.baseball-reference.com/pl...reer&t=b#lineu

    He's .282/.332/.458 for his career as a cleanup hitter.
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  7. #36
    It's showtime! RedEye's Avatar
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    Re: "Anatomy of Brandon Phillips, RBI machine"

    Is B-R a skill? I really don't know if it can be proven either way. But it might be.
    If it is a skill, it is one that is not separable from team performance. That's my point.

    Phillips is performing at 50% better than the league average rate. I disagree with Cameron. I think that is special.
    You can use whatever language you want to, but the fact remains that it is not as rare as what Choo and Votto are doing ahead of him in the order.

    Cameron choses to praise one and disregard the other.
    He didn't disregard BP at all! He actually praised him and said he was worthy of recognition.

    My point about HBP.. sure they should count.
    But if someone wrote an article claiming that HBP is not a skill, Biggio was an outlier, and thus Choo's "real OBP" is only 464, which is good but not particularly special, since it clumps him in with such great stars as Jed Lowrie, Chris Davis, and AJ Ellis, wouldn't you say that the article was dumb? I sure would.
    I'll plead ignorance on the issue of HBP, as I'm not familiar with specific research on the topic.

    IMO, your larger comparison about OBP is unfair. The big league careers of Jed Lowrie (.333 in 1220 AB) and Chris Davis (.317 in 1584 AB) look patently unlikely to approach the sustainable success of Choo (.384 in 2624 AB) or Votto (.418 in 2628 AB). AJ Ellis (.374 in 672 AB) looks like a more interesting case, but he's only been up for a little more than a season. If Ellis maintains this level of performance, I would say his on-base skills would be worthy of a word like "special."

    We have every reason to think Choo and Votto will maintain their OBP somewhere close to .400 for the season, which is ridiculously good -- "special" even -- and bodes good things for this lineup going forward.

    And whatever BP does with RISP, that will mean more runs.
    "Iíll kind of have a foot on the back of my own butt. Thatís just how I do things.Ē -- Bryan Price, 10/22/2013

  8. #37
    It's showtime! RedEye's Avatar
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    Re: "Anatomy of Brandon Phillips, RBI machine"

    Quote Originally Posted by M2 View Post
    Got his best BA, OB and SLG of any lineup slot where he has 500+ ABs. Here's the numbers: http://www.baseball-reference.com/pl...reer&t=b#lineu

    He's .282/.332/.458 for his career as a cleanup hitter.
    Thanks for looking that up. I hadn't realized that BP had so many AB in the cleanup spot for his career. It's clear his numbers are a tick better there -- but is the difference between his career numbers (.273/.322/.435) and his cleanup numbers (.282/.332/.458) really so significant that we can start looking for causality beyond random variation?
    Again, an honest question.
    "Iíll kind of have a foot on the back of my own butt. Thatís just how I do things.Ē -- Bryan Price, 10/22/2013

  9. #38
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    Re: "Anatomy of Brandon Phillips, RBI machine"

    Quote Originally Posted by Brutus View Post
    Most certainly.

    In 2011, he was having at least one runner on base for every 2.3 plate appearances. Last year it was one for every 2.1 plate appearances. This season, so far, he's having a runner on base once every 1.1 plate appearance.

    So if all things were equal, he'd have more RBI's at his similar, previous rates. But in this case, assuming all those extra RBIs are simply a product of more baserunners is misleading and incorrect. He is, in fact, driving them in at a higher rate thus far on top of having more opportunities.
    Yes, I know that. So does Cameron. And he says so. In fact, that's the premise for his article, right?
    "Iíll kind of have a foot on the back of my own butt. Thatís just how I do things.Ē -- Bryan Price, 10/22/2013

  10. #39
    Waitin til next year bucksfan2's Avatar
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    Re: "Anatomy of Brandon Phillips, RBI machine"

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    As a manager you should want your hitters to be doing the best that they can in order to reach first base safely. Anything beyond that is gravy.

    Joey Votto has swung at 60% of the strikes he has seen this year. That is good for 54th lowest in the game out of 191 qualified hitters. Ryan Hanigan, Devin Mesoraco and Zack Cozart are all at 60% as well. We just take notice more because Votto swings much less overall because he gets pitched around so often.
    As a manager I would want my hitters to score more runs than the opponent.

    But to throw your comment back at you, if your an opposing manager do you want Joey Votto to beat you? Or are you going to roll the dice that you can get BP or Bruce out easier? If I am an opposing manager I am going into a game not letting Votto beat me.

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  12. #40
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    Re: "Anatomy of Brandon Phillips, RBI machine"

    Quote Originally Posted by RedEye View Post
    Do the stats bear this out? Is he a better hitter in the cleanup slot, or is it just random variance? Honest question, I don't doubt what you are saying.
    Phillips has said that when he's batting in #1 / #2, he's more focused on OBP and taking the walk. When he's hitting #4, he says his primary focus is to get the RBI, in any way we can.
    That is paraphrased, but at least Phillips believes he has a different approach.
    Thank you Walt and Bob for going for it in 2010-2014!

    Nov. 13, 2007: One of the greatest days in Reds history: John Allen gets the boot!

  13. #41
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    Re: "Anatomy of Brandon Phillips, RBI machine"

    Quote Originally Posted by REDREAD View Post
    Phillips has said that when he's batting in #1 / #2, he's more focused on OBP and taking the walk. When he's hitting #4, he says his primary focus is to get the RBI, in any way we can.
    That is paraphrased, but at least Phillips believes he has a different approach.


    Brandon's splits

    2- 320/424
    4-332/458

    He may believe that's what he's doing.
    "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."

  14. #42
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    Re: "Anatomy of Brandon Phillips, RBI machine"

    Quote Originally Posted by RedEye View Post
    Yes, I agree that the point of the article is to put BP's accomplishments in perspective. I do see sarcasm, but I don't see it directed in the way you do. The tone is more directed at those who think BP's RBI's are due to some sort of supreme achievement on his part. I think Cameron's attitude comes from fending off years and years of arguments along these lines when the data clearly doesn't support it. .
    He quotes Dusty, and then says Dusty's words are a myth.
    Myth = falsehood.

    That's pretty strong language.

    Clearly Cameron thinks the guy on base deserves more credit for the run than the guy driving it in.. Even in the back-to-back doubles scenerio.

    I saw that entire postgame interview. Dusty's point was not to rankle up the stat community. It was to praise Phillips, who had a whale of a game. In this particular game, Phillips was basically the "star of the game".
    Dusty's right, if Phillips (or someone else) doesn't drive in the runs, the Reds lose.
    Likewise if the tablesetters don't get on base, the Reds lose.
    This thread is full of common sense statements like that

    Cameron is supposed to be a professional writer. I expect more out of his written word than I do out of Dusty's postgame comments. Cameron has all the time in the world to edit and think about what's he's writing. Dusty has 10 microphones shoved into his face after the game. Dusty has no time to think through his responses. Dusty has a lot of people just looking for the chance to pull one sentence out of context and rip him.. People like Cameron, who are so insecure they have to continually write articles to "prove" that they are smarter than Dusty. Reality is that Dusty knows more about baseball than Cameron does.

    That's what the entire article is.. Cameron stroking his ego at Dusty's expense.
    And yes, I know Cameron is a member here, and he appeared after bashing Dusty once in a similiar manner, when there was a thread simliar to this.

    Quoting Dusty and calling it a myth is very amaturish.
    Thank you Walt and Bob for going for it in 2010-2014!

    Nov. 13, 2007: One of the greatest days in Reds history: John Allen gets the boot!

  15. #43
    The Boss dougdirt's Avatar
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    Re: "Anatomy of Brandon Phillips, RBI machine"

    Quote Originally Posted by bucksfan2 View Post
    As a manager I would want my hitters to score more runs than the opponent.

    But to throw your comment back at you, if your an opposing manager do you want Joey Votto to beat you? Or are you going to roll the dice that you can get BP or Bruce out easier? If I am an opposing manager I am going into a game not letting Votto beat me.
    Hitters getting on base = scoring runs.

    And of course I would rather face Phillips, then Bruce and then Votto. Votto > Bruce > Phillips.

  16. #44
    Et tu, Brutus? Brutus's Avatar
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    Re: "Anatomy of Brandon Phillips, RBI machine"

    Quote Originally Posted by RedEye View Post
    Yes, I know that. So does Cameron. And he says so. In fact, that's the premise for his article, right?
    To be honest, I haven't yet read the article. And for that reason, I'm not really responding to anything Cameron said or didn't say, as I haven't seen it.

    But I do know that because RBIs are partially dependent on opportunity, people tend to go the opposite extreme and dismiss them entirely as a product of such opportunity to combat those that engage them as a meaningful stat. I don't think that's entirely fair as you can have all the opportunities in the world, but you still have to cash in. In this case, it seems the tone of the conversation was that Phillips' additional RBIs this season were only a product of Votto and Choo, which is the tenor of the quote you posted by Cameron. So it didn't seem out of place to point out that isn't accurate.
    "No matter how good you are, you're going to lose one-third of your games. No matter how bad you are you're going to win one-third of your games. It's the other third that makes the difference." ~Tommy Lasorda

  17. #45
    Where's my chair? REDREAD's Avatar
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    Re: "Anatomy of Brandon Phillips, RBI machine"

    Quote Originally Posted by RedEye View Post
    IMO, your larger comparison about OBP is unfair. The big league careers of Jed Lowrie (.333 in 1220 AB) and Chris Davis (.317 in 1584 AB) look patently unlikely to approach the sustainable success of Choo (.384 in 2624 AB) or Votto (.418 in 2628 AB). AJ Ellis (.374 in 672 AB) looks like a more interesting case, but he's only been up for a little more than a season. If Ellis maintains this level of performance, I would say his on-base skills would be worthy of a word like "special."
    .
    That's exactly my point. Choo > Lowrie in OBP skills.
    That's why Cameron belittling Phillips by comparing him to Deno and the other journeymen was a lame argument.
    I'm glad that example worked.
    Thank you Walt and Bob for going for it in 2010-2014!

    Nov. 13, 2007: One of the greatest days in Reds history: John Allen gets the boot!


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