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Thread: Some NL Central players show up in a Plate Discipline article

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    Some NL Central players show up in a Plate Discipline article

    http://www.hardballtimes.com/main/ar...ipline-part-1/

    The article goes through the steps in analyzing Plate Discipline. He looks at:
    * the ratio of pitches inside the strike zone to pitches outside the strike zone (how often do you see good pitches)

    This stat correlates well with walks (duh) and home runs. They argue that the correlation with home runs implies pitchers are being cautious with these hitters.

    Tony Womack is on the list for seeing an extremely high number of pitches in the strike zone, indicating pitchers aren't scared of his power.

    David Eckstein makes the same list, for the same reason.

    * The percentage of pitches outside the strike zone a batter swings at (how often you chase bad pitches)

    This strongly correlates with walks - amazing, no? No NL Central player made the top or bottom 5 of this list.

    * The percentage of times a batter hits the ball when he swings the bat. (how often do you make contact)

    This correlates with strikeouts (WOW) but also with home runs - arguing that players who swing for the fences are more apt to swing and miss. We've got a lot of NL Central guys in here:

    David Eckstein on the Good List (He's the best in all of baseball, actually)
    Craig Wilson, Wily Mo Pena, and Brad Eldred on the Bad List

    I didn't exactly see him every day, but I always liked Eckstein. Now that I see him play a lot (I'm an Astros fan, but I live in St. Louis), I appreciate him even more.

    It really does a good job of elucidating why I liked Eckstein. (I always thought he was a good hitter, now I know why he is.) If you see a lot of good pitches and you're good at making contact, you'll rarely strike out, and you'll hit for a high average.

    It's a good read - you should check it out. I was surprised that with the power hitters in the NL Central, we didn't have more people present in this article. Pena's the only NLC guy I would call a power hitter they mentioned. For the most part, we must be doing our part in avoiding strikeouts.

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  3. #2
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    Re: Some NL Central players show up in a Plate Discipline article

    Tony Womack is on the list for seeing an extremely high number of pitches in the strike zone, indicating pitchers aren't scared of his power.
    I'm shocked and dismayed.

    Good read. Thanks for posting the article tts1stros.

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    Re: Some NL Central players show up in a Plate Discipline article

    Quote Originally Posted by tts1stros
    For the most part, we must be doing our part in avoiding strikeouts.
    Um... didn't we have something like 5 players with over 100 strikeouts, and Eddie E was close? Just food for thought there...
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    Re: Some NL Central players show up in a Plate Discipline article

    I guess I have the opposite take re: Eckstein -- if he's never hit .300 despite getting more to hit than practically anyone else in the game, that doesn't speak well for him. And Womack? Ugh.

    But the article you linked does make a good point -- different players are pitched differently, and two players can have the same pure level of plate discipline and yet have considerably different walk rates. Something to consider when thinking of how many walks a player "should" draw. Eckstein generally suffers in the evaluation of statheads like me because he doesn't draw a lot of walks and his OBP is driven by batting average, but if he's drawing 40-50 walks a season while being pitched the way he is, he's probably doing a good job of taking the walks that are available to him.
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    Re: Some NL Central players show up in a Plate Discipline article

    From the article

    If you've been reading the recent Daily Graphing columns, you'll notice that I've been talking about some not so common stats such as, the percent a player swings at pitches outside the strike zone and actual contact rate. These oddball stats are derived from Baseball Info Solution's "pitch data" which contains the location and result of each and every pitch, among other things. I've decided it's probably a good idea to go over a bunch of these stats and examine why I think they're meaningful.
    Does anyone know if those stats are readily available online anywhere? Appelman scratches the surface, but anyone with this data could really do some outstanding studies based on pitch location and the percentage of swings at balls/strikes.
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    Re: Some NL Central players show up in a Plate Discipline article

    Are these "strikes" as called by the umpires or real strikes as identified by electronic tracking?
    "Enjoy this Reds fans, you are watching a legend grow up before your very eyes" ... DoogMinAmo on Adam Dunn

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    Re: Some NL Central players show up in a Plate Discipline article

    Quote Originally Posted by TeamBoone
    Are these "strikes" as called by the umpires or real strikes as identified by electronic tracking?
    I don't actually know, but I'd imagine they're electronic tracking.


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