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Cole and Taillon: Announcing their presence with authority.
1 week, 4 days ago on Friday links and things
We have come quite a long way from the "Should Cole be sent down to the minors when Wandy comes back" discussions we were having a couple of months ago, haven't we?
5 months, 2 weeks ago on That Gerrit Cole is so hot right now
@mwr505 They shouldn't. He's maybe a 1 WAR player who should be at most the big half of a platoon, but will get paid like a full-time 2-3 WAR player on reputation. They could get better performance out of a strict Gaby/Lambo platoon at less than half the cost.
5 months, 2 weeks ago on The Pirates are going to the playoffs
@PatStuart If two teams end up with the same record, HFA is decided by head-to-head record (which can't be tied, because the three teams involved each played 19 games against each other). PIT leads STL 10-9; STL leads CIN 11-8, and PIT/CIN will be decided in the last three games of the season (currently tied 8-8).
If all three teams are tied, #ChaosEnsues.
@mwr505 Road record: 40-36, .526
Home record: 50-31, .617
The facts do not support your narrative.
5 months, 2 weeks ago on Game 156: Reds 11 Pirates 3
Common wins only come into play if one team doesn't have a H2H advantage over both other teams. If the Pirates take 2 of 3 from the Reds (or sweep, for that matter) and end up in a 3-way tie, they will get the choice of being "team C" because they'll have a better H2H over both the Reds and the Cards.
That would lead to an off-day on Monday when the Cards host the Reds, and then traveling to either St Louis or Cincinnati to determine the Division winner. With a win they'd be off until the first game of the LDS on Thursday; with a loss they'd host the loser of the Monday game in the WC game. (Unless the playoff game counts as a "regular season" game to determine H2H records for home-field advantage for the WC game, at which case my head explodes.)
5 months, 2 weeks ago on The final week
Bruce doubled on the first pitch he saw. If you started warming up a reliever after Phillips walked, he wouldn't have been ready to pitch to Frazier. If you started warming up a reliever after Votto walked, he probably wouldn't have been ready (8 pitches and one ball in play probably isn't enough time). So that means you're warming up a reliever after Heisey singled. In other words, after two batters hit ground balls, one of which was an out and the other of which was maybe six inches from being another out.
Plus, while you obviously can't assume the game plays out the same way, it's very possible that the only difference between putting in a RP and leaving Locke in is that the Pirates lose 9-3 instead of 11-3.
It just wasn't the Pirates' day.
@mwr505 "With Marte gone for another week it's gonna be tough even to play .500 while he's hurt on DL."
Yeah, since he's been out of the lineup, they've only gone 4-3.
6 months, 2 weeks ago on Game 130: Giants 4 Pirates 0 (a late recap)
@justinzeth @Ugarles I realize this is hyperbole, but Alvarez's OPS against LHP* is .600; Pirates' pitchers have an aggregate OPS of .224. NL pitchers overall have an OPS of .336, and the team with the best-hitting pitchers** is the Dodgers, whose pitchers have an OPS of .445.
* BB-Ref doesn't have crosstabs (split vs LH RP, vs split vs LHP, split vs RP); however, I would note that overall, Alvarez's OPS against RP first appearance is .666, which is higher than his overall OPS vs LHP; this indicates he's likely not doing worse against LHRP than he is against LHP overall.
** Omitting the Tigers (OPS .600) and Royals (OPS .571) due to SSS (19 and 23 PAs, respectively).
Lambo would need to be added to the 40-man, taking the last open slot; if the Pirates make a trade that doesn't involve sending someone from the 40-man, someone would have to be DFAd or moved to the 60-day DL. It also would risk burning one of Lambo's option years.
7 months, 2 weeks ago on McKenry disabled, Presley called up, White Sox being ridiculous, and more
There you go again with your "logic" and "reason". Everyone knows that the only reason that Cole would go back down to AAA is because Nutting is too cheap to risk Super 2 and no one cares about Cole anyway cause there's no such thing as Cole-mania waah waah.
One quibble - I wouldn't call his last start "superb". Good, exciting, what you want to see from a #1 pick, sure - but by game score (admittedly a blunt instrument) Pirates starters have pitched 25 better games this season.
8 months, 2 weeks ago on The upcoming pitching dilemma
" He's probably been the Pirates' fourth best position player this year (after McCutchen, Martin, and Marte)."
There's the problem. If he was named Malvarez, he'd be fine.
8 months, 3 weeks ago on Pedro Alvarez is on fire, but nothing is changing
C'mon, Pat, you forgot the most important pieces of info about the CWS/WCWS - who umpired those Tennessee/Oklahoma and UNC/FAU games? Isn't that what people go to the ballpark to see?
9 months, 1 week ago on Game 58: Braves 7 Pirates 2
In your previous article, you said, "I'm sure that at some point in the next week some scuffling right-handed pitcher is going to be left in the game to face Prince Fielder or Joey Votto in a huge spot and I am going to absolutely lose my mind."
Scuffling right-handed pitcher: Check.
Prince Fielder: Check.
Huge spot: Check.
9 months, 2 weeks ago on Game 51: Tigers 6 Pirates 5
A while ago I said on BD that Inge and McDonald would get 500 PAs between them this season, to much disdain.
10 months, 1 week ago on Brandon Inge's first two weeks (or: where is Travis Snider?)
@PatStuart "it is now clear that the Brad Lincoln trade was a disaster that has cost the Pirates several games."
Lincoln hasn't exactly been lights-out since the Pirates traded him. He's only been in five games where the Jays were tied or ahead when he entered; and in two of those, he gave up three runs each.
If you prefer broader stats to individual games, Snider has an OPS+ of 113 for the Pirates and Lincoln an ERA+ of 83 for the Jays.
BBRef-WAR? -0.2 for Lincoln in TOR, +0.4 for Snider in PIT. FWAR: 0.0 for Lincoln/TOR, 0.4 Snider PIT. So by those metrics, Snider has been half a win more valuable than Lincoln since the trade.
However you slice it, it's at best hyperbole and at worst 180 degrees wrong to say that the Lincoln trade cost the Pirates several games.
1 year, 6 months ago on And so here we are again | August 2012
The Pirates are playing meaningful baseball at the end of August. It is somewhat likely that they will still be playing meaningful baseball the day that the Steelers start their regular season. And if we do have to move our sights from the present, it's not "to some distant, murky, uncertain future," it's simply "til next year" - like 28 other teams every season.
Come in off the ledge, Pat - it's not that bad.
1 year, 8 months ago on Game 65: Pirates 9 Indians 5 | May 2012
@lefttheburghlongago (a) is easy - it's in the OP. "Teams with runners on first and no outs have a 0.941 run expectancy for that inning."
You could run the entire simulation, with every possible outcome of a plate appearance, the likelihood of each occurring, and the resulting RE. But the crux of the matter is that by sending a batter to the plate to sacrifice, you are implementing a strategy where success results in lower RE for the inning.
Let me put that another way: assume you had a player, call him ROBOBUNTER, who could execute a successful sacrifice every single time he tried. When ROBOBUNTER steps up to the plate with a runner on first and no out, the team's RE that inning is .941. When RE sits down after having successfully executed his sacrifice, the team's RE has dropped to .721. Successfully executing the bunt has lowered the team's RE by .22 runs. Roughly speaking, he's on average decreased his team's chances of winning by 2.2%.
The only reason you would do that is if the weighted resulting RE of every possible outcome of the batter not bunting is lower than .721. Consider a simplified case: ROBOGROUNDBALLHITTER, who hits a ground ball every time he comes to the plate, never striking out, walking, or hitting the ball in the air. 30% of the time this ground ball finds its way through the infield or is misplayed by the infielders, giving the team runners on first and second and no out. Of the remaining 70% of his ground balls, half result in a double play, and half result in a "productive out", moving the runner to second.
If you run the numbers, when ROBOGROUNDBALLHITTER sits down after his AB, the weighted average RE for his team is .703. Because he never walks, never gets an extra-base hit, and frequently grounds into a double play, he lowers his team's RE by even more than ROBOBUNTER.
But if you even consider an abysmally bad batter - say, one who strikes out 40% of the time, has a BA of .200 and an OBP of .240, gets one double every 50 PAs and no other extra base hits ever, moves the runner from first to third on a single only one time in five, and grounds into a double play 25% of the time he comes to the plate with a runner on first and less than two out (which works out to an OPS of about .480 and an OPS+ of about 32, or Clint Barmes, who has the lowest OPS of any qualifying NL batter this season, but that's another issue) - and you run the numbers in the same way, you get a weighted average RE of .736. This abysmally bad batter is better off swinging away than if he was able to lay down a perfect sacrifice every single time he tried.
1 year, 9 months ago on I have an idea to help the Pirates' moribund offense: STOP GIVING AWAY OUTS | May 2012
You forgot the hashtag.
1 year, 10 months ago on I have an idea to help the Pirates' moribund offense: STOP GIVING AWAY OUTS | May 2012