Monday, September 26, 2011

What is the significance of 4.44?

Here’s a crazy thing.  I’m trying to do some “comps” (comparables) between this 2011 Giants team and “what might be” the 2012 Giants team, if I had any say in it.  Tough to do, when our brainiac manager has used about 150 lineups for 159 games.

I decided to use the following for 2011.  Why?  Mostly these players had the most plate appearances (PA’s).  I chose Torres over Rowand simply because he’s a more ‘prototypical’ lead-off hitter- and Rowand’s SB, OBP, and OPS+ are much WORSE than Torres.  I chose Keppinger over Fontenot for 2B, and Fontenot has much worse stats.  I also chose Stewart over Whiteside, although Whiteside has more PA’s.  So keep in mind my 2011 stats are weighted towards the ‘better’ side; that is, ummm…  After Posey and Freddy Sanchez were already out.

I figured all starters to a common 600 PA’s.  For example, Torres had 383 PA, so I multiplied that 383 by 1.56658 to get 600 PA’s.  I then used the same multiplier for each stat, like Torres’ 24 2B = 38.  No stat can round up, 0.5 of a double doesn’t count as a single.  Lol.

  • Torres
  • Keppinger
  • Sandoval
  • Huff
  • Ross
  • Schierholtz
  • Tejada
  • Stewart

This above lineup has:  .250 BA, .309 OBP, 256 2B, 106 HR, 443 RBI, 60 SB


This lineup below has: .284 BA, .332 OBP, 224 2B, 164 HR, 650 RBI, 137 SB

  • Aybar
  • Sanchez
  • Kemp
  • Sandoval
  • Posey
  • Pill
  • Wells
  • Crisp

I think it worth noting several things here.  First, Aybar, Kemp, Wells, and Crisp didn’t play their 2011 season at AT & T as their home ballpark.  (duh?!  We all know this.  lol).  I think the 2B and 3B stats would likely be higher, and their HR totals would likely be lower.  SB totals would then modify further, can’t steal a base on a HR, but maybe more steals with more doubles?  Yeah, I think maybe so.

It also isn’t fair to extrapolate Pill’s 2012 season projections from 39 PA this year.  But I don’t want to use MiLB stats here, just my conscious decision.  Will Pill’s 2 HR in 39 PA translate into 31 HR in 600 AB?  We could only HOPE for such success in 2012.  I doubt it.  Really doubt it.  Plus, weren’t both those HR’s on the road?  Yeah, you see.

What about batting averages and OBP?  Well, Crisp plays in Oakland, where there is also vast foul territory.  One might anticipate Aybar, Kemp, and Wells averages to dip slightly in the pitchers friendly confines of AT & T.  But I beg to differ.  I think the added depth of the lineup might compensate.  I think pitchers would absolutely have to attack the strike zone at some point.  Whereas in 2011, a pitcher could nibble around Sandoval and Beltran and get Huff-Belt-Cabrera-Stewart behind them for easier outs.  Makes Pablo’s 2011 that much more remarkable IMO.  The strength of the lineup will only build more strength IMHO.

Again on this topic, I don’t see it realistic that Pablo would only have 101 RBI’s in 2012, based on extrapolating from his 2011 stats.  We had so few base runners on ahead of him, think of all those solo HR’s we had going.  And Posey has 68 RBI in 2012 according to his 2011 stats.

So, 2012 batting average and OBP might dip slightly, but I doubt it.  Sure, HR totals might dip a bit.  But doubles and triples would almost certainly go up.  The OPS+ ratings should therefore be even better overall.  Stolen bases would likely be higher too.

I wouldn’t be surprised to see the 2012 team:
.278 BA, .325 OBP, 240 2B, 155 HR, 650 RBI, 150 SB

Let’s consider, not every starter is likely to have 600 PA’s in a season.  Our bench production is still valuable and must be considered too.  For example, whether our pinch-hitters are successful in clutch situations (with RISP, etc).  Also, let’s hope all can stay healthy and playing.

But as a ‘very simplified’ method of extrapolating team stats, let’s consider this.

The 2011 roster I used above had this stat line.
(I'll remind you now that I used "stronger" players, this is better than many starting lineups we fielded in 2011):
.250 BA, .309 OBP, 256 2B, 106 HR, 443 RBI, 60 SB


Through 159 games, this is the Giants stat line according to
.241 BA, .303 OBP, 279 2B, 119 HR, 522 RBI, 83 SB.

Pretty dang representative IMO.  Sure, pinch hitters and bench players will have a decent percentage of RBI’s on any respectable team.  But they aren’t likely to have better overall averages/stats than the starters (except for manager Bochy, he loves him some suck-ish veteran starters).  And you clearly see our SB total includes pinch runners like Ford, Burriss, and Christian.

Now, I’ll consider these things and make a TEAM stat line, not just starters, but including bench players (and pitchers).

I’d say our adjusted 2012 team stat line could be:
  • .270 BA (6th ahead of NYY)
  • .323 OBP (T10 w/ MIL, AZ, and PHI)
  • 285 2B (T8th w/ ANA, below AZ)
  • 160 HR (13th below COL, ahead of STL)
  • 720 RBI (5th below DET, above STL and best in NL)
  • 140 SB (5th below NYY, above TEX)
Most teams have 20-30 more R (Runs Scored) than RBI’s.  Using this info…
  • 740 R (5th below DET, above STL and best in NL)

740 R / 159 G = 4.65 runs/game average.

That’s right about where I think we can get with a $135-140M payroll each year for 5 consecutive years.

Currently, we’re at:
557 R/ 159 G = 3.50 runs/game average.  We are 29th in all of MLB, there are only 30 teams.


Don’t think ONE more run/game matters?

Have a think on this.

Our last 18 games played (starting Mon 9/5 at San Diego), here is our record.

W            7-2
W            6-4
L              1-3
L              1-2
L              0-3
W            8-3
W            3-2
W            3-2
W            8-5
W            9-1
W            6-5
W            12-5
L              1-2
W            8-5
L              2-8
L              1-3
L              2-15
L              2-5

See any patterns?

I do.
I see we lost every game we scored two or fewer runs.
And won every game we scored three or more runs.

Eight of those eighteen games we scored 6 or more runs.
Five times we scored 8 or more runs.
And in that 18 game period we scored 80 runs and our run average is 4.44 runs/game. We went 10-8.

In order to get a 3.50 run average...
Try to figure out how you can realistically subtract 17 runs and still go 10-8 for those eighteen games.  Best of luck there.

It will take two or three quality bats to extend our lineup into a serious contender.

We can get to at least 4.44 runs/game in 2012.
That would be 719 runs in 162 games.
That is EXACTLY 162 more runs than we currently have in 2011, with three games to go.

Aybar, Kemp, Wells…  I think it can be done.
And we'd have a real shot at winning 95 games each season from 2012 through 2016.
Our sad 2011 team cost $121 million.
Spend the extra $15 million, make the trades, get me my $136M team please!

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