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If Miggy Performs well Next year...

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25 minutes ago, chasfh said:

OK, so, I'm with you on this for the most part, but the devil's advocate demands equal time:

Did you read Bill James's Underestimating the Fog essay from a few years ago? He essentially hypothesized that baseball researchers have a tendency to attribute to luck or randomness those traits which have not yet, through testing, been determined to be a persistent skill. Things like clutch hitting ability, winning or losing streaks, outcome on balls in play, etc., have been concluded to be random clusters of discrete events not influenced by the players involved. James holds that just because we haven't figured out how to measure a certain trait doesn't mean it's not a skill that doesn't exist, and therefore the answer is randomness.

Point being, it's possible that the Angels, or any team, can be one of the best teams year after year during the regular season due to reasons we can easily determine, but at the same time could be, because of some reason we haven't determined yet, completely unsuited to winning playoff series.

Some people who themselves don't believe baseball research is an actual thing will come to conclusions that are suited to their own prejudices: Angels couldn't win playoff series because they lacked the right experience, lacked the right fortitude, lacked the right clubhouse leadership, etc. And that's fine, let them. They don't have to be part of the serious conversation about it, and we shouldn't force them to be. But when baseball researchers, unable to identify a reason for the persistent phenomenon of the Angels' failing to win playoff series, conclude that no reasons leading to that exist so it must all be random, they're engaging in the same facile conclusion-jumping that anti-research fans do, made worse by the fact that researchers spend countless hours juggling numbers before throwing up their hands and guessing.

Bringing it all back around to Miggy: after having juggled the numbers, I'm confident his slide in 2017 is a transient phenomenon due to random bad luck. :D

In statistics, the null hypothesis would be that it's random and the burden of proof would be on the side that thinks it is not random.   But James is right that we shouldn't jump to the conclusion that it's all luck.  We can say that there is no convincing evidence that's is not luck.  

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35 minutes ago, chasfh said:

OK, so, I'm with you on this for the most part, but the devil's advocate demands equal time:

Did you read Bill James's Underestimating the Fog essay from a few years ago? He essentially hypothesized that baseball researchers have a tendency to attribute to luck or randomness those traits which have not yet, through testing, been determined to be a persistent skill. Things like clutch hitting ability, winning or losing streaks, outcome on balls in play, etc., have been concluded to be random clusters of discrete events not influenced by the players involved. James holds that just because we haven't figured out how to measure a certain trait doesn't mean it's not a skill that doesn't exist, and therefore the answer is randomness.

Point being, it's possible that the Angels, or any team, can be one of the best teams year after year during the regular season due to reasons we can easily determine,

well, long story short, I do believe in match-ups. There are certain real differentials inside the aggregate winning percentages. For instance I think the Tigers had a much better shot against the Mets in '06 than the Cards. We were a RH hitting team, the Mets were a LH pitching team. I don't remember exactly now but I think the Cards were the only team in the playoffs with all RH starting pitching - ergo bad match.

The problem of course is that you don't get to choose who you play in the playoffs - which is why I have always harped on that exact point with Dombrowski - he did not build balanced teams - too few LH players both pitching and hitting. That exactly the kind of thing that can leave you ill suited in the playoffs where you can't pick/know your opponent, as opposed to building your team looking only at your division rivals. A balanced team gives you a better shot when the nature of the opposition isn't known.

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15 minutes ago, Gehringer_2 said:

well, long story short, I do believe in match-ups. There are certain real differentials inside the aggregate winning percentages. For instance I think the Tigers had a much better shot against the Mets in '06 than the Cards. We were a RH hitting team, the Mets were a LH pitching team. I don't remember exactly now but I think the Cards were the only team in the playoffs with all RH starting pitching - ergo bad match.

The problem of course is that you don't get to choose who you play in the playoffs - which is why I have always harped on that exact point with Dombrowski - he did not build balanced teams - too few LH players both pitching and hitting. That exactly the kind of thing that can leave you ill suited in the playoffs where you can't pick/know your opponent, as opposed to building your team looking only at your division rivals. A balanced team gives you a better shot when the nature of the opposition isn't known.

But if you are right-handed and happen to face a heavily LHP pitching staff, then that significanyly increases your odds of winning.  On the other hand a balanced team will have no distinct advantage or disadvantage in any series.  So, I would expect an unbalanced team to be more volatile, but not necessarily at a disadvantage, at least not one which would explain three championships versus zero.   

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1 hour ago, Gehringer_2 said:

well, long story short, I do believe in match-ups. There are certain real differentials inside the aggregate winning percentages. For instance I think the Tigers had a much better shot against the Mets in '06 than the Cards. We were a RH hitting team, the Mets were a LH pitching team. I don't remember exactly now but I think the Cards were the only team in the playoffs with all RH starting pitching - ergo bad match.

I’m curious as to why you think the 2006 Tigers matched up better against LHP than RHP?

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When I think of playoff baseball I see the difference in game being something as simple as a LF being able to run down a ball that could have gone for a 2 run double.  The cliche of speed and defense is true but it’s not speed like Quentin Berry. It’s an OF making a play or a 2B getting to one more ball for an out. 

I being up the 2012 WS a lot but the last 3 games were very competitive. One hit either way changes it. An entire narrative hinges on that.   Not to mention the Tigers not being in first place by themselves until the final Home stand. White Sox really choked too. 

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5 hours ago, tiger337 said:

But if you are right-handed and happen to face a heavily LHP pitching staff, then that significanyly increases your odds of winning.  On the other hand a balanced team will have no distinct advantage or disadvantage in any series.  So, I would expect an unbalanced team to be more volatile, but not necessarily at a disadvantage, at least not one which would explain three championships versus zero.   

Certainly true. But I look at this this way - you don't need the best record to get into the playoffs, and no-one remembers who won the league championship - so I'd rather give give back a little in terms of being able to win the most regular season games to have the team that has a good shot against anyone rather than one that might get lucky and draw a team that happens to match up favorably to my weaknesses. True - in the long run maybe statistically the average # of successes might not be different - the choice of approach becomes a value judgement - but that would be my preference.

But even that is not the same thing as building a playoff team vs a regular season team. You can win a lot of regular season games with a deep bench of RH fastball hitters and slow runners, but it's going to get a lot tougher when you have to face a good team without the luxury of facing their 4th and 5th starters. At minimum, that's when speed becomes more valuable, since you aren't going to string together hits against better pitchers, and you also need some hitters with different strengths, particularly at least a few guys who can hit a good breaking ball pitcher, which playoff teams are more likely to have. I never thought Dombrowski's singular focus over the years on RH FB hitters gave the Tigers as versatile a line-up as I would have liked.

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On 11/23/2017 at 9:19 PM, Oblong said:

 The tigers are not in this position because of overpaying for Sanchez or VMart. It’s for having to make trades for guys like Simon and Soria and signing Aviles.   

I think it is a combination of both, although I think its more of the latter than the former.

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