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That old Stats vs Scounting Argument once again

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  • That old Stats vs Scounting Argument once again

    I've come to the realization that if we take the approach to scouting that some members here take, the best scouting "staff" would be a $1,000 laptop with Excel and a unpaid college intern who can copy stats from Baseball-Reference to the laptop.

    If all an organization does is rely on publicly known stats, then there is no need for a scouting staff since all decisions are based on stats. True scouting reports are highly confidential since they should contain information about players that the other 29 teams do not know. This would be the intangibles like how the kid reacts to different situations, gets along with teammates, picks up on nuances in-game, etc.

    100% reliance on stats is 100% the wrong approach. There is too much subjectivity and "luck" that goes into the stats. A Scorer makes many subjective calls if something is a hit or error. How do you account for that? Many times a batter is "robbed" of a hit by a Shortstop who perfectly times his leap to snap a line drive that would have otherwise been a two RBI hit.

    Stats provide guidance, but to heavily rely on them would cause a team to miss the boat.

  • #2
    Originally posted by Dumpjerry View Post
    I've come to the realization that if we take the approach to scouting that some members here take, the best scouting "staff" would be a $1,000 laptop with Excel and a unpaid college intern who can copy stats from Baseball-Reference to the laptop.

    If all an organization does is rely on publicly known stats, then there is no need for a scouting staff since all decisions are based on stats. True scouting reports are highly confidential since they should contain information about players that the other 29 teams do not know. This would be the intangibles like how the kid reacts to different situations, gets along with teammates, picks up on nuances in-game, etc.

    100% reliance on stats is 100% the wrong approach. There is too much subjectivity and "luck" that goes into the stats. A Scorer makes many subjective calls if something is a hit or error. How do you account for that? Many times a batter is "robbed" of a hit by a Shortstop who perfectly times his leap to snap a line drive that would have otherwise been a two RBI hit.

    Stats provide guidance, but to heavily rely on them would cause a team to miss the boat.
    You can account for those infield hits/ROEs by avoiding guys who hit ground balls in the first place.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Mohoney View Post

      You can account for those infield hits/ROEs by avoiding guys who hit ground balls in the first place.
      Snagging a ground ball does not make an out. I'm talking about the Shortstop who times his leap to snag a line drive that is about 6 feet or so up heading to the gap.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Dumpjerry View Post

        Snagging a ground ball does not make an out. I'm talking about the Shortstop who times his leap to snag a line drive that is about 6 feet or so up heading to the gap.
        How many plate appearances actually end that way? Not enough end that way to make it worth worrying about. Plus, if a guy is totally snakebit on this, you will see it when you see his average exit velocity.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Mohoney View Post

          How many plate appearances actually end that way? Not enough end that way to make it worth worrying about. Plus, if a guy is totally snakebit on this, you will see it when you see his average exit velocity.
          Almost every game has a guy "robbed." Be it a perfectly timed leap by the Shortstop, an excellent route by an Outfielder, what have you. It happens and so do subjective hit/error scoring decisions. There is no way stats can reflect this.

          Stats can give you a general idea of how good a guy is in the recent past, but they are not crystal clear Crystal Balls into future performance.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Dumpjerry View Post
            Almost every game has a guy "robbed." Be it a perfectly timed leap by the Shortstop, an excellent route by an Outfielder, what have you. It happens and so do subjective hit/error scoring decisions. There is no way stats can reflect this.

            Stats can give you a general idea of how good a guy is in the recent past, but they are not crystal clear Crystal Balls into future performance.
            So, maybe one out of 70-80 plate appearances, sometimes?

            Not exactly worth the hassle of worrying about these "bad beats."

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            • #7
              Ya'll realize there's a stat that addresses this exact issue, right? It's called BABIP...
              Riding Shotgun on the Sox Bandwagon since before there was an Internet...



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              • #8
                Originally posted by voodoochile View Post
                Ya'll realize there's a stat that addresses this exact issue, right? It's called BABIP...
                BABIP also depends on a guy’s speed, though.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by voodoochile View Post
                  Ya'll realize there's a stat that addresses this exact issue, right? It's called BABIP...
                  All Cowboy Bebop does is tell us how often the balls you hit turn unto outs. It doesn't tell us anything about the quality of hits, the situation of the AB or quality of the defense against. In its broadest sense, it tends to show some decent correlation between good hitters of the baseball and bad ones, but it's a monotonous stat that is cited far too often in attempt to normalize (dirtiest word there is) outcomes.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Krs1 View Post

                    All Cowboy Bebop does is tell us how often the balls you hit turn unto outs. It doesn't tell us anything about the quality of hits, the situation of the AB or quality of the defense against. In its broadest sense, it tends to show some decent correlation between good hitters of the baseball and bad ones, but it's a monotonous stat that is cited far too often in attempt to normalize (dirtiest word there is) outcomes.
                    You can actually compare BABIP on GB vs BABIP on line drives. It's there to be looked at and that's what the discussion was about.
                    Riding Shotgun on the Sox Bandwagon since before there was an Internet...



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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by voodoochile View Post

                      You can actually compare BABIP on GB vs BABIP on line drives. It's there to be looked at and that's what the discussion was about.
                      And that paints no clearer a picture. Plenty of well hit grounders, plenty of just poor hit jobs that qualify as liners. There's plenty of artistry and bumbles with the leather. There's a lot of two strike bat control hits that get the same love as a blooper. There's hitters that use the field and shifts to their advantage. We get none of that with cowboy bebop. It's largely a bull**** stat outside of broad strokes. Of the highly quoted stats, it's probably the least useful and most relied upon to tear down or boost up players as having "incredible luck" or "no luck at all," while gambling on career years and bounce backs.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Krs1 View Post

                        And that paints no clearer a picture. Plenty of well hit grounders, plenty of just poor hit jobs that qualify as liners. There's plenty of artistry and bumbles with the leather. There's a lot of two strike bat control hits that get the same love as a blooper. There's hitters that use the field and shifts to their advantage. We get none of that with cowboy bebop. It's largely a bull**** stat outside of broad strokes. Of the highly quoted stats, it's probably the least useful and most relied upon to tear down or boost up players as having "incredible luck" or "no luck at all," while gambling on career years and bounce backs.
                        Anecdotal evidence is not evidence. You can point to all the weird outcomes, chance plays, flukes, etc. It doesn't change the fact it is not satisitically relevant.

                        Edit What BABIP can tell you is if someone is having a luckier season. Player speed will affect BABIP as will their ability to generate bat speed so grounders are hit harder (See Abreu, Jose). However BABIP does show that baseballs that leave the bat at an elevated angle have a better chance of being hits.
                        Riding Shotgun on the Sox Bandwagon since before there was an Internet...



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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by voodoochile View Post

                          Anecdotal evidence is not evidence. You can point to all the weird outcomes, chance plays, flukes, etc. It doesn't change the fact it is not satisitically relevant.

                          Edit What BABIP can tell you is if someone is having a luckier season. Player speed will affect BABIP as will their ability to generate bat speed so grounders are hit harder (See Abreu, Jose). However BABIP does show that baseballs that leave the bat at an elevated angle have a better chance of being hits.
                          Statistical relevance and a stat that paints a picture of luck in the same argument? Okay, so you're telling me that stat is largely useless for actual baseball? Gotcha.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Krs1 View Post

                            Statistical relevance and a stat that paints a picture of luck in the same argument? Okay, so you're telling me that stat is largely useless for actual baseball? Gotcha.
                            Serious question: what are your thoughts on exit velocity? Isn’t it simply a quantification of the observation “he hits the ball hard?”

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Frater Perdurabo View Post

                              Serious question: what are your thoughts on exit velocity? Isn’t it simply a quantification of the observation “he hits the ball hard?”
                              Right, exit velocity and launch angle are just quantifications of "barreling up the baseball"
                              Riding Shotgun on the Sox Bandwagon since before there was an Internet...



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