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Thread: Out Machines

  1. #1
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Out Machines

    Lost in the season of bullpen meltdowns, poor streaks from starters, lousy defense and curious managerial decisions is a substandard offense that hasn't really gotten enough blame for the Reds problems so far in 2007. The Reds have amazingly slugged pretty well. Of the 10 players with 100 plate appearances through June 1, six have a slugging % higher than .475 (Griffey, Dunn, Hamilton, Gonzalez, Phillips and Hatteberg). The problem is that the team simply doesn't get on base enough. Through June 1, 282 players in major league baseball have 100 or more plate appearances. Those players range in on base percentage from .495 (Barry Bonds) to .230 (Jason Kendall). In the middle of the pack at number 141 sits Josh Bard with an OBP of .338.

    Looking at the list, the Reds have 3 players in the top half and 7 players in the bottom half of those rankings.

    Code:
    Rank	Name		OBP
    22	Griffey		0.397
    43	Hatteberg	0.387
    107	Dunn		0.352
    145	Hamilton	0.336
    154	Conine		0.333
    156	Encarnacion	0.331
    157	Phillips	0.331
    181	Gonzalez	0.319
    196	Freel		0.313
    271	Ross		0.266
    Beyond that, the team has been caught stealing 14 times (4th most of 30 teams) and picked-off 7 others (Tied for 7th most -Ryan Freel with 6 CS and 4 PO so far), and hit into 54 Double Plays (11th of 30 Teams) and 1 Triple Play (one of only 2 teams to hit into one).

    The Reds are 5th in the NL in Runs scored so far, but that is deceiving playing in GABP. This team simply makes too many outs IMO and players who are more successful at getting on base are needed. The outs on the bases need to stop as well.

    Opinions?
    Last edited by mth123; 06-03-2007 at 07:55 AM.
    "All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it." --BABE RUTH

    Having better players makes "the right time" or "the big hit" happen a lot more often. PLUS PLUS

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  3. #2
    Danger is my business! oneupper's Avatar
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    Re: Out Machines

    My favorite stat: Win Probability Added, indicts the offense quite seriously.

    http://www.fangraphs.com/winss.aspx?...ds&season=2007

    From FanGraphs.com here's the summary of WPA for the REDS:

    Offense: -4.16
    Starters: -0.73
    Relief: -1.61

    Total: -6.50 (x2 = 13 games under .500)

    The offense has not performed in leveraged situations.
    We know about the bullpen, sure..its usually more obvious, but in a tie or close game not scoring is as bad as being scored upon (almost, at least).
    And the offense has done that late in games, time after time.
    "A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky, dangerous animals and you know it."

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  4. #3
    I hate the Cubs LoganBuck's Avatar
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    Re: Out Machines

    Further evidence as to why we don't need a team of "eight Ryan Freels".
    The Sox traded Bullfrog the only player they've got for Shottenhoffen. Four-eyes Shottenhoffen a utility infielder. They've got a whole team of utility infielders.

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    Re: Out Machines

    Relying on a traditional stat, for many years the Reds have been a low BA team. Right now they are 9th in the league in walks -- not good -- but 11th in BA, which is even worse.

    They hit the long ball (GABP and all) but they don't have enough truly good all around hitters. It's really that simple.

  6. #5
    THAT'S A FACT JACK!! GAC's Avatar
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    Re: Out Machines

    We are 10th in the NL in OB% at .323 (21st overall). Slightly below the league avg (.327). Last year we had an OB% of .336 (7th) in the NL. So in comparison to last year there has been a dip.

    But with Runners in Scoring Position, in the NL, we are....

    - 16th (.229)
    - 16th in Hits (97)
    - 15th in XBH (33)
    -15th in TBs (161)
    -14th in SLG% (.381)


    So while we may have somewhat of a problem getting men on - the larger problem looms once we get them on.

    But our pitching just isn't where we want it to be.

    We are 5th in the NL in Runs (256). But Runs Allowed? 281 (#1 in the NL).

    This offense may have it's problems; but it's compounded by the pitching IMHO.

    The way this offense is performing you'd need 5 Oswalts in the rotation.
    "panic" only comes from having real expectations

  7. #6
    Danger is my business! oneupper's Avatar
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    Re: Out Machines

    Good post, GAC
    We bicker every night about lineup construction (well, I do), and here is where it comes to fruition.

    If you give the opposing pitcher/manager a chance to put the weight of the offense on Conine, Castro, Gonzalez and Ross...they will.

    You put your best hitters TOGETHER. Linking hits TOGETHER is what gets you runs in baseball. Three total bases in an inning (three singles, double+single, triple, etc.) are more likely than not going to get you at least a run.
    Two total bases is most likely going to get you a goose egg.

    It's so simple, even an ex-catcher could understand it.

    Inserting out producers between your base producers is a sure-fire way to poor run production.
    "A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky, dangerous animals and you know it."

    http://dalmady.blogspot.com

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    Re: Out Machines

    Looking at the Reds ranked according to OBP, there is no catcher or SS in the top 8.

    OBP SLG OPS

    Griffey 0.390 0.528 0.918
    Hatteberg0.387 0.477 0.864
    Dunn 0.351 0.528 0.879
    Hamilton 0.336 0.521 0.857
    Encarnacion0.335 0.370 0.705
    Conine 0.331 0.406 0.737
    Hopper 0.328 0.385 0.713
    Valentin 0.328 0.393 0.721
    Phillips 0.325 0.469 0.794
    Gonzalez 0.318 0.507 0.825
    Freel 0.313 0.363 0.676

    Everyone probably agrees that it would be a disaster, let's say, to put Hatteberg behind the plate just so the 6th best OBP guy, Conine, could play
    1B or to play Phillips play at SS and Hopper at 2B just because their OBP of .328 and .325 tops the .318 of Gonzalez. So, short of those defensive disasters, perhaps a compromise to get a little more offense would be to substitute Valentin -- granted, only their 3rd best defensive catcher -- for Ross, who doesn't even make the top 12 list for OBP.

    My hunch is that Valentin -- given enough PT -- would even hit southpaws better than Ross currently is doing. What are their splits, anyway?

  9. #8
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    Re: Out Machines

    Yeah, this team is bad in every conceivable way--but GAC's right: worrying about a handful of underperforming guys on offense just kind of misses the point.

    This offense is plenty enough to win with if the pitching's there. And yet here we are, 17 months into Krivsky's tenure, and absolutely NOTHING has been done about it. And no, keeping the kids on the farm healthy is not Krivsky's doing; it's DanO's drafting.

    It seems like we get these threads a lot when the offense gets schooled by a brutally tough lefty (Francis). It happens--really good pitchers like Francis are going to school even the best of offenses, not just okay ones like the Reds.

    (I will say this: having Hamilton back is going to help).
    Last edited by Falls City Beer; 06-03-2007 at 12:00 PM.

  10. #9
    Big Red Machine RedsBaron's Avatar
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    Re: Out Machines

    Quote Originally Posted by LoganBuck View Post
    Further evidence as to why we don't need a team of "eight Ryan Freels".
    Freel is fun to watch, but a guy who has little power, a .313 OBP, and is barely over 50% in his ratio of stolen bases to caught stealing isn't helping you that much, and has no business batting leadoff.
    "Hey...Dad. Wanna Have A Catch?" Kevin Costner in "Field Of Dreams."

  11. #10
    Stat Wanker Hodiernus RedsManRick's Avatar
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    Re: Out Machines

    The problem with the Reds offense, as has been shown elsewhere, is that it is too inconsistent. Sure, the total number of runs scored is just fine (5th in the NL & on pace for 728). But two 4 run games are better than a 7 run game and a 1 run game. Because of our low OBP (and because our best OBP guys are batting low in the order ahead of guys who can't drive them in), we're simply more volatile than would be ideal.
    Games are won on run differential -- scoring more than your opponent. Runs are runs, scored or prevented they all count the same. Worry about scoring more and allowing fewer, not which positions contribute to which side of the equation or how "consistent" you are at your current level of performance.

  12. #11
    "Let's Roll" TeamBoone's Avatar
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    Re: Out Machines

    Quote Originally Posted by oneupper View Post
    Good post, GAC
    We bicker every night about lineup construction (well, I do), and here is where it comes to fruition.

    If you give the opposing pitcher/manager a chance to put the weight of the offense on Conine, Castro, Gonzalez and Ross...they will.

    You put your best hitters TOGETHER. Linking hits TOGETHER is what gets you runs in baseball. Three total bases in an inning (three singles, double+single, triple, etc.) are more likely than not going to get you at least a run.
    Two total bases is most likely going to get you a goose egg.

    It's so simple, even an ex-catcher could understand it.

    Inserting out producers between your base producers is a sure-fire way to poor run production.
    Excellent post! It's maddening. And no protection for Dunn doesn't help. He rarely gets a decent pitch to hit, so he has to swing at borderline pitches that would be called strikes if he doesn't.

    Forget lefty/righty. Put 'em together, and I agree that we'd see more production from the offense.

    Makes me crazy every single game.
    "Enjoy this Reds fans, you are watching a legend grow up before your very eyes" ... DoogMinAmo on Adam Dunn

  13. #12
    The Lineups stink. KronoRed's Avatar
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    Re: Out Machines

    Quote Originally Posted by LoganBuck View Post
    Further evidence as to why we don't need a team of "eight Ryan Freels".
    A team of 8 Ryan Freels would probably challenge the Cleveland Spiders for most losses in a season if the team had avg pitching.

    But they sure would be scrappy
    Go Gators!

  14. #13
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Out Machines

    Quote Originally Posted by Falls City Beer View Post
    Yeah, this team is bad in every conceivable way--but GAC's right: worrying about a handful of underperforming guys on offense just kind of misses the point.

    This offense is plenty enough to win with if the pitching's there. And yet here we are, 17 months into Krivsky's tenure, and absolutely NOTHING has been done about it. And no, keeping the kids on the farm healthy is not Krivsky's doing; it's DanO's drafting.

    It seems like we get these threads a lot when the offense gets schooled by a brutally tough lefty (Francis). It happens--really good pitchers like Francis are going to school even the best of offenses, not just okay ones like the Reds.

    (I will say this: having Hamilton back is going to help).
    This thread has nothing to do with last night. The point is that the offense is not in good shape either and it shouldn't go unnoticed. I suppose it could be passable if everyone performs. The implications that I see:

    1. There isn't an excess of offense to trade for needed pitching.
    2. The only two plus offensive players on the horizon will be replacing the top two guys on the OBP list that I posted.
    3. Counting on the additions of Bruce and Votto to "fix" the offense to allow a trade of Dunn is misguided. The offense needs all three and EdE, Hamilton and Phillips to have a chance.
    4. Established pitching will need to be acquired with cash and the place to get it is from Griffey, Hatte, Milton, Lohse, Larue, Freel, Stanton, Cormier, Weathers, Castro, Javy and hopefully Ross and Gonzalez money. If Dunn is traded any money freed from such a move will need to be plowed right back into the offense to bring an established run creator.
    5. Any trades that can be made should be for cheap options for SS and C to free up more money as well as young arms to throw into the mix.
    6. I suppose that the team could try to get a younger cheaper run producer back in a trade involving Dunn, but I just don't imagine anyone being willing.

    This team is awful everywhere and IMO Ross and Freel are the offensive equivalents of Milton and Lohse.
    "All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it." --BABE RUTH

    Having better players makes "the right time" or "the big hit" happen a lot more often. PLUS PLUS

  15. #14
    Big Red Machine RedsBaron's Avatar
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    Re: Out Machines

    Quote Originally Posted by oneupper View Post

    You put your best hitters TOGETHER. Linking hits TOGETHER is what gets you runs in baseball. Three total bases in an inning (three singles, double+single, triple, etc.) are more likely than not going to get you at least a run.
    Two total bases is most likely going to get you a goose egg.

    It's so simple, even an ex-catcher could understand it.

    Inserting out producers between your base producers is a sure-fire way to poor run production.
    Amen, and you should not only put your best hitters together, you should give them as many at bats as possible. That means a Freel or a Phillips does not bat as high in the order as does a Griffey or a Dunn. The Reds have had a succession of managers who seem to be unable to grasp that simple concept.
    I understand that a batting order only has so much effect on an offense, but even if a proper batting order gained the Reds but a few wins on the season, this team needs every possible edge that it can get.
    I absolutely agree with TeamBoone that it is maddening how the Reds managers have misused Dunn. Even when he is slumping, Dunn still has a decent OBP as a result of his tendency to get a lot of base on balls. When he bats fifth or sixth, those walks tend to go to waste as there is no one who is likely to drive him in, and batting Dunn fifth or sixth merely increases the chances that the pitcher will not give him anything good to hit. I'd probably bat Dunn second most games, followed by Junior. For that matter, and while I hate to pick on Freel, Dunn would be a better leadoff hitter than Freel.
    "Hey...Dad. Wanna Have A Catch?" Kevin Costner in "Field Of Dreams."

  16. #15
    Member Sea Ray's Avatar
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    Re: Out Machines

    Looking at the list, the Reds have 3 players in the top half and 7 players in the bottom half of those rankings.

    Rank Name OBP
    22 Griffey 0.397
    43 Hatteberg 0.387
    107 Dunn 0.352
    145 Hamilton 0.336
    154 Conine 0.333
    156 Encarnacion 0.331
    157 Phillips 0.331
    181 Gonzalez 0.319
    196 Freel 0.313
    271 Ross 0.266
    I don't see where you've identified a glaring weakness here. In fact, it shows the offense to be quite average.

    First of all, let's agree that 1) the bench is very weak offensively and 2) that no one is having a career year offensively

    So let's look at the starting 8. If you count Hamilton as a starter, he is right at the median for OBP. Then you have 4 under it. That's what you would expect from an average offensive team. In that bottom half you have middle infielders and the catcher. I would have to assume that league wide that would be the norm.

    EE has had an awful year so far but I think we need to keep playing him. That leaves catcher as an obvious hole and I'd love to see them improve that position but the fact is most of the league is looking for a decent defensive C who can produce some offense. It's not an easy combination.

    So we get back to this question: What position is a glaring hole in this lineup?

    I would like to see if more ABs from Hamilton and improvement from EE help this O.


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