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Thread: The Fallacy of Potent Hitting of the Past

  1. #1
    Worth The Wait
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    The Fallacy of Potent Hitting of the Past

    Reading RZ, there is a common refrain about how it's frustrating that we can't hit like we have for the past 10 years now that the pitching appears stellar. But that just seemed like revisionist history to me, so I did a little research....

    In the end, all offensive stats should lead to one conclusion: Runs scored. The entire notion of OPS is based on it's correlation with scoring runs-- so, when looking at team stats from a broad historical perspective, runs scored is truly the be-all, end-all stat.

    And when it comes to scoring runs, the 2000-2008 Reds were not only NOT great, they were below the ML average in terms of yearly ranking.

    Reds ML rank in runs scored:

    08: 23rd
    07: 14th
    06: 22nd
    05: 4th
    04: 20th
    03: 26th
    02: 20th
    01: 21st
    00: 14th

    That comes to an average of 18th and that is made a bit higher by our lone exceptional offensive season in 2005.

    Yes, the offense looks a bit worse this year and will most likely rank 20th or below, but it's really not totally far off from past trends. I'm just not sure what people are pining away for...

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  3. #2
    Waiting for a tour/album KittyDuran's Avatar
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    Re: The Fallacy of Potent Hitting of the Past

    I'm just not sure what people are pining away for...
    IMHO, it's WAYYYY too easy... the "Big Donkey's" HRs!
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    Playoffs Cyclone792's Avatar
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    Re: The Fallacy of Potent Hitting of the Past

    Quote Originally Posted by Edskin View Post
    And when it comes to scoring runs, the 2000-2008 Reds were not only NOT great, they were below the ML average in terms of yearly ranking.
    A much more accurate comparison is NL only, not MLB. We don't have the luxury of the designated hitter in our lineup.
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    Re: The Fallacy of Potent Hitting of the Past

    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclone792 View Post
    A much more accurate comparison is NL only, not MLB. We don't have the luxury of the designated hitter in our lineup.
    Ask and you shall receive....

    08: 12th
    07: 7th
    06: 9th
    05: 1st
    04: 10th
    03: 13th
    02: 9th
    01: 12th
    00: 5th

    Average of a 9th place rank in the NL. Again, with one big year helping keep us from closer to the bootom.

    18th out of 30 in mlb and 9th out of 16 in the NL. Either way, nothing to long for.

  6. #5
    Member redsfandan's Avatar
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    Re: The Fallacy of Potent Hitting of the Past

    Right now we've dropped from 12th last year all the way to 14th. And so far most of the offense has underperformed. Will we score less than last year? Barring a trade yeah we will. But will it be as bleak as some seem to make it out to be? Doubt it.

  7. #6
    OOOOH YEEEAHHHH!! CarolinaRedleg's Avatar
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    Re: The Fallacy of Potent Hitting of the Past

    Based on early looks, we might score less than we have in years past. Then again, from the same early looks, so will they. Our pitchers are dealing right now and I think the bats are starting to wake up a bit.

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    Playoffs Cyclone792's Avatar
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    Re: The Fallacy of Potent Hitting of the Past

    Quote Originally Posted by Edskin View Post
    Ask and you shall receive....

    08: 12th
    07: 7th
    06: 9th
    05: 1st
    04: 10th
    03: 13th
    02: 9th
    01: 12th
    00: 5th

    Average of a 9th place rank in the NL. Again, with one big year helping keep us from closer to the bootom.

    18th out of 30 in mlb and 9th out of 16 in the NL. Either way, nothing to long for.
    Actually, 9th or roughly average in the NL in run scoring would be a nice thing to long for this season. That would give the team a realistic playoff shot if the pitching ultimately holds up and finishes in the top 3 or 4 in the league. The Pirates are currently 9th in the NL in run scoring right now, and they're averaging 4.5 runs per game, or a half run better than we are at the moment.

    Good to very good pitching can get you to the playoffs with merely an average or slightly below average offense. But it would take near historically great pitching to get a poor offensive team to the playoffs.
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    Five Tool Fool jojo's Avatar
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    Re: The Fallacy of Potent Hitting of the Past

    This thread is pretty accurate. The potency of the Reds offense in the earlier part of this decade is mostly romanticism rather than reality. I think it gets more credit than it deserves because other aspects of the Reds were pretty bad.

    Quote Originally Posted by jojo View Post
    I think any aspect of the game where a team truly has a sledge hammer advantage dramatically increases their chances even if flawed in other places. In '01 the Ms were sledgehammer offensively and defensively and pretty vanilla pitching-wise.

    The Reds were basically an offense only team from '00-'08 but their offense wasn't actually exceptional. For instance the Yanks scored over 850 runs 7 times (over 900 twice) during that period. Boston scored over 900 runs three times during that period. The Reds actually only managed to score more than 800 twice during that period (825 and 820). Unfortunately they were the anti-'01 Ms in other aspects of the game as atrocious defense accentuated their pitching but not in a good way.

    Just being good at one thing though, probably isn't going to get it done.
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    Stat Wanker Hodiernus RedsManRick's Avatar
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    Re: The Fallacy of Potent Hitting of the Past

    Adjust those offenses for park effects to get a better look at the underlying talent involved and it's clear the Reds of the past decade were largely mediocre offenses who couldn't field or pitch. Definitely not a successful combo.
    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.

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    Member medford's Avatar
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    Re: The Fallacy of Potent Hitting of the Past

    thanks for the info edskin, this is along the same line I was thinking while reading the "reds are boring" thread. The offense wasn't really all that great the last decade, lots of moon shot homeruns, but not neccessarily great at scoring runs. In fact, they ended up right about where I would have guessed, namely league average.

    Here's the question, lets say at trade deadline time you need 1 or 2 pieces to complete the puzzle and mold a roster that can contend for a playoff spot and World Series Championship. Is it easier to acquire solid pitching, or solid hitting depending on which is deemed the final piece? I guess the hitting is somewhat dependent upon what spot they'd need to play in the field, specifically its going to be much easier to find someone that can swing a mean bat and play LF rather than a kid that can play a solid SS and have a decent bat as well.

    In the Reds case, a SS wouldn't hurt, but it seems like a big bat could certainly fill in at LF, or even 3B if he's capable enough (and EE doesn't bounce back). I would think acquiring a starting pitcher and/or bullpen ace would cost you more than a decent bat.

    anyone else think differently?

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    No half measures, Walter RedEye's Avatar
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    Re: The Fallacy of Potent Hitting of the Past

    Quote Originally Posted by medford View Post
    Here's the question, lets say at trade deadline time you need 1 or 2 pieces to complete the puzzle and mold a roster that can contend for a playoff spot and World Series Championship. Is it easier to acquire solid pitching, or solid hitting depending on which is deemed the final piece?
    Conventional wisdom would say that it is easier to acquire hitting at the deadline, and I suppose that's why a lot of the buzz around July 31st is always about those two or three aces that could be made available. That said, I wonder if anyone has ever tested that intuition in any empirical way. I suppose it would take research into the deadline deals of the past decade or so and then some sort of method of measuring how "easily" teams got what they were looking for.
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    Member membengal's Avatar
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    Re: The Fallacy of Potent Hitting of the Past

    I think, in fairness, that a lot of the concern over losing Dunn was that the Reds were losing a chunk out of an already not-very-good offense, and how to keep the not-very-good offense from being even worse. Edskin's numbers are a nice reminder that the offense was indeed not exactly world-beating, even with Dunn.

  14. #13
    High five! nate's Avatar
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    Re: The Fallacy of Potent Hitting of the Past

    Quote Originally Posted by membengal View Post
    I think, in fairness, that a lot of the concern over losing Dunn was that the Reds were losing a chunk out of an already not-very-good offense, and how to keep the not-very-good offense from being even worse. Edskin's numbers are a nice reminder that the offense was indeed not exactly world-beating, even with Dunn.
    Especially when combined with a "world-beaten" pitching staff!
    "Bring on Rod Stupid!"

  15. #14
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    Re: The Fallacy of Potent Hitting of the Past

    For the record, this was not meant to be a "Dunn bash" thread--just wanted to try and quantify a feeling I had.

  16. #15
    Pitching is the thing WVRedsFan's Avatar
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    Re: The Fallacy of Potent Hitting of the Past

    Just a thought and a belief:

    The offense is not as bad as it appears right now, but it's not as good and exciting as some proclaim.

    Back in 2004-2005, etc., it was exciting to see the HR, watch the ball bounce off the wall, etc. Of course the pitching staff gave up those runs as well as some more. they didn't hit well with runners on base. Lots of problems. This season, there is just a lack of punch--extra base hits, but if you've noticed, Votto, at least consistently delivers. That's a change.

    One more bat and this could be a really surprising season.
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