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Boesch: Slump or Shelton 2.0?

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My complaint is simple, why is Miguel Cabrera getting pitched around a bad thing? It's going to cost you occasionally, but basically you're simply going to raise Cabrera's OBP without harming his other stats, I don't think anyone would complain about that if it was just happening normally. But if he's getting pitched around it's a disaster somehow.

It's not a disaster if you can get him in once in while, but if he is losing his RBI's and no-one else is picking them up, hard to see how that is not an issue. Bigger thing to my mind is effect on Cabby though. He's not Pujols, I don't think he likes to walk - so if not getting pitched to starts to mess his head up, THATS the disaster.

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Since July 11, he's walking in 13% of his plate appearances, versus 11.8% prior to July 11... Seeing as we're talking 98 PA vs 355 PA, that's not much of a sample. He was slugging .650 before July 11 and is slugging .628 since.

This is something I'd rather get info from the other teams and from Cabrera himself. Is he doing anything different at the plate since Boesch has struggled? Are the other teams pitching to him different? They aren't going to tell us. At least not now.

The data's too small and the variances are not big enough to mean anything. You'd have to go game by game to get to the situation to figure it out.

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he's back! count on another big game tonight from BB

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My complaint is simple, why is Miguel Cabrera getting pitched around a bad thing? It's going to cost you occasionally, but basically you're simply going to raise Cabrera's OBP without harming his other stats, I don't think anyone would complain about that if it was just happening normally. But if he's getting pitched around it's a disaster somehow.

I'm more concerned about the Tigers scoring runs as a team, rather than Cabrera's OBP and other stats.

When they pitch around Cabrera, it's a "disaster" because we don't have many other hitters who can get the job done.

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I disagree. No, not Jhonny Peralta; however, what about when Boesch was slugging through the roof? I highly doubt Tampa would've walked bases loaded 3 times on Cabrera.

But you don't understand. If you take thousands of No. 4 and No. 5 hitters and throw them into one big statistical pile and crunch the numbers, you'll see that lineup protection is a myth. To hell with your common sense; it's been statistically proven.

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Lineup protection suggests that Miggy will walk more when lesser players are behind him. But, when the ball is put in play, then there won't be much of a difference than we had previously seen. So, when he is pitched too, there isn't likely going to be any effect. Obviously, TB wouldn't have intentionally walked Miggy if Albert Pujols was hitting behind him. No one is suggesting that.

Regardless, I think the very idea of lineup protection and seeing "easier pitches" to hit isn't common sense. Logically, to me anyway, it doesn't make any sense and never has. If Miguel Cabrera is in the batters box, I'm going to pitch carefully to him regardless who is on deck. I'm certainly not going to give him easier pitches to hit just b/c a great hitter is behind him. I'd have to have my head examined if I would be willing to do that. He's already a great hitter, and I'm not going to make things easier for him. I may walk him more if the situation called for it and if terrible hitters were behind him, but when I did elect to pitch to him and try to get him out, I would attack him just as carefully as I had before. And, if Cabrera is in the on deck circle, I would be crazy to give easier pitches to hit to the guy in front of him. Why in the world would I make it easier for that guy to get on base? If anything, I'm going to give that guy harder pitches to hit and give myself the best chance of not facing Cabrera with men on base. The guys in front of great hitters, if anything, should see their numbers look slightly worse than they otherwise would be, imo.

Personally, I've never understood the fascination with lineup protection. Guys will walk more if lesser batters are behind them. That part makes sense. Nothing else does, imo.

Edited by Scottwood

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I don't think that Cabrera will put up a higher OPS if he is protected. But I think the team will do a lot better if their good hitters are around Cabrera. Miguel comes through in high leverage situations, and every walk he takes means a higher leverage situation for the guy batting behind him.

So I guess it depends on what is meant by 'lineup protection.'

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I don't think that Cabrera will put up a higher OPS if he is protected. But I think the team will do a lot better if their good hitters are around Cabrera. Miguel comes through in high leverage situations, and every walk he takes means a higher leverage situation for the guy batting behind him.

So I guess it depends on what is meant by 'lineup protection.'

This. We call it 'protection' for the player, but that is sort of a misnomer since the 'unprotected' hitter will be fine statistically (if he's patient). It is really protection for the batting order. To get the most from your productive hitters, in each cases the next batter has to be a big enough threat that he is as much risk to the defending team with the extra man on base as the previous guy was with one less on base, otherwise your best hitters don't get to hit in productive situations.

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I don't think that Cabrera will put up a higher OPS if he is protected. But I think the team will do a lot better if their good hitters are around Cabrera.

Yeah, I would agree with that.

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This. We call it 'protection' for the player, but that is sort of a misnomer since the 'unprotected' hitter will be fine statistically (if he's patient). It is really protection for the batting order. To get the most from your productive hitters, in each cases the next batter has to be a big enough threat that he is as much risk to the defending team with the extra man on base as the previous guy was with one less on base, otherwise your best hitters don't get to hit in productive situations.

This is why it is very difficult to measure protection in any real sense. Good hitters already draw walks and pitchers are already being careful with them in general. No one throws fastballs down the middle to Cabrera just because another great hitter is behind him, because then Cabrera is just going to kill him. And on most major league teams walking someone (no matter how good) isn't a good thing. That seems pretty intuitive given that no major league hitter has ever been consistently intentionally walked regardless of the situation.

It seems pretty obvious on a team with Cabrera and 8 qsilvr's that Miguel would get intentionally walked ever time. With typical major league hitters around him though, it isn't beneficial for the opposing team to walk him and since he's a patient hitter pitching around him will have exactly that result.

The Tigers lineup right now looks pretty bad, especially the guys that follow Cabrera, so it's possible that the Tigers are bad enough that not pitching to Cabrera is bad for the Tigers. But it doesn't really matter because one addition to the lineup to protect Miguel isn't going to solve our offensive problems. Cabrera getting pitched around might be an issue. A lineup full of replacement level hitters is much bigger problem and if the Tigers fix that problem Cabrera getting pitched around becomes a non-issue as well.

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Boesch went 0-5 last night and 0-4 tonight with all strikeouts in the 0-4. I realize that it doesn't matter anymore for the Tigers placement what he does at the plate as we're done. However, I find this decision making to let him 'work it out at the MLB level' incredibly cruel and damaging to Brennan at this point. Why wouldn't he be given the chance to regain his form at AAA? This is my biggest roster management concern in several years of DD and Leyland. As much as Willis getting a starting spot out of Spring Training this year.

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Boesch went 0-5 last night and 0-4 tonight with all strikeouts in the 0-4. I realize that it doesn't matter anymore for the Tigers placement what he does at the plate as we're done. However, I find this decision making to let him 'work it out at the MLB level' incredibly cruel and damaging to Brennan at this point. Why wouldn't he be given the chance to regain his form at AAA? This is my biggest roster management concern in several years of DD and Leyland. As much as Willis getting a starting spot out of Spring Training this year.

How is it cruel? He's a pro athlete, he's getting paid thousands of dollars every game. Is it cruel that Cale Iorg has been the worst player in AA for the last 20 years (I know it only seems that way) why not send him back to the GCL? Because it's what is needed for his development.

What are the Tigers supposed to do? Send down every player who has a slump? Maybe Magglio could have used some time in AAA last year.

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What are the Tigers supposed to do? Send down every player who has a slump? Maybe Magglio could have used some time in AAA last year.

This makes no sense. Magglio isn't a rookie, horrible comparison.

You call this a slump? Batting .100 since all-star break and looking absolutely lost at the plate with a progression of looking worse by plate appearance? Yes, you send him down, period.

He's a pro athlete... No kidding, eh? So was Willis.

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Who else can we put in RF right now? Don Kelly?

Casper Wells or Andy Dirks.

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13/105 thats more than a slump

Wow, thanks Sportz for the numerical visual there. That really is beyond slump numbers, agreed.

I really feel like DD and Leyland are hanging the kid out to dry at this point.

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While I admire Leyland for not pulling the plug on Boesch prematurely, I do have to agree that he's overmatched at the moment. However, with only 3 weeks left in Toledo's season now, about all you could do is bench him I guess. I'm open to bringing Wells up now - while he is hot.

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You want to see if the kid has the mental toughness to work his way through things. As you even said, Cap, it's not like his struggles are hurting post season chances. If the team were still fighting for a playoff spot, sure, send him down, but as things stand right now, you may as well let him fight through the difficulties, especially this late in the season.

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While I admire Leyland for not pulling the plug on Boesch prematurely, I do have to agree that he's overmatched at the moment. However, with only 3 weeks left in Toledo's season now, about all you could do is bench him I guess. I'm open to bringing Wells up now - while he is hot.

I watched one AB last night..7 pitches 7 balls..he struck out..zero plate discipline..but most importantly, pitches he barrelled up in June, he is flat out missing now.

He is feeling for the ball, he used to attack it.

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Guys, the hitting behind Miguel premise is the most overated thought in baseball, do you really think putting Jhonny Peralta in the 5 hole is going to make anyone throw Cabrera good pitches to hit??

Now that a couple of weeks have past and Miguel's walk to at bat ratio is approaching record numbers; do you still really believe this?

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