The Stats We Use: FIP

Evaluating pitchers is tough. Most of the traditonal batting stats are based on discrete, context-free events that mostly have to do with the offensive player’s skill – Home Runs, hits, stolen bases, batting eye, etc. There are still stats like RBI and R that depend on the players around the batter, but generally the quick and dirty thing that were tradtionally looked at with a batter were their triple crown stats: AVG, HR, and RBI. Nowadays you’re more likely to see a hitter’s slash line (AVG/OBP/SLG), OPS, or if you’re lucky wOBA, all of which are pretty much context-neutral.

For pitchers it’s much more difficult to tease out context-neutral stats. For a long time the primary stats used to evaluate a pitcher were Wins, ERA, and Strikeouts. I don’t even need to explain how useless Wins are as a stat to evaluate a pitcher’s performance. Much like RBI it’s a narrative stat rather than a particularly quantitative one, and the RBI stat is far less ambiguous. It depends heavily on a pitcher’s team’s offense scoring enough runs to give the team a win, as well as the pitcher’s bullpen not regularly imploding behind him. ERA is a little better — it’s a rate stat that quantifies the number of runs scored off the pitcher per 27 outs. But it also has issues. One problem is the bullpen issue mentioned above – if you leave a guy on when you’re pulled from the game and Jeff Samardzija gives up a HR on the first pitch you’re still dinged for the guy on the basepaths. One even bigger problem is defense. You don’t want to burn a pitcher for pitching in front of a team that’s a bunch of statues, similarly, a pitcher who plays in front of a team of Ozzie Smiths is obviously going to look a lot better. The fact that pitching is so intertwined with defense makes it harder to tease out some sort of context-free metric for how good a pitcher might be.

One big breakthrough in evaluating pitchers came when Voros McCracken introduced Defense Independent Pitching Statistics – namely, developing metrics that completely strip out fielding from the equation. He found that generally pitchers have no control over what happens to balls in play – in almost all cases pitchers defense independent stats such as strikeouts, walks, and home runs tended to be much more stable than their BABIP (batting average on balls in play). There have been more modifications and clarifications to this theory (which we’ll talk about in future stats posts), but overall it provided a new framework for evaluating pitchers.

Anyway, here’s the formula

FIP = (13*HR + 3*(BB+HBP – IBB) – 2*K)/IP  +  C

C is a constant that rescales FIP so it’s on the same scale as ERA, much like we do with wOBA (i.e. the average FIP is the same as the average ERA). For general purposes you can think of it as 3.2, and it is usually computed at a seasonal level.

Where do these numbers come from? It’s the same idea as in wOBA – those weights on the events are derived from the average run value of each event. And in fact you could even say that FIP does include balls in play because of the + C factor at the end. By scaling it to the league ERA, you’re basically saying that FIP evaluates a pitcher for skills that he has control of relative to facing an average offense and with an average defense behind him. Aside from neutralizing the context, one of the advantages of FIP is that it is a better indicator of future performance than ERA. Colin Wyers did a study a few years ago that looked at FIP (as well as a few other DIPS type stats that we may look at here) as a predictor of ERA and found that it does roughly a 20% better job than ERA alone.

FIP does have its flaws, which other stats have sought to overcome. One of the ones that has always jumped out to me anecdotally is things like GB rate, which a pitcher also has some control over. Some other systems such as tRA and Baseball Prospectus’s SIERA factor in batted ball types. Another problem is that HRs can obviously have huge impact on the FIP formula but are relatively rare events, so some bad luck on HRs leaving the park can affect a pitcher. xFIP (for expected FIP) improves FIP by trying to normalize out pitchers’ HR/FB rates, though on average it’s not much better of a predictor than FIP because if you look at the entire population of pitchers, xFIP should be about the same as FIP.

FIP is used in Fangraphs’s calculation of Wins Above Replacement, which we will discuss in the future. One debate in the saberist world is what pitching stat one should actually use to value a pitcher’s performance. Fangraphs uses FIP because as mentioned it neutralizes defense and offense faced. However Rally, the creator of the now-propreitary CHONE projections, used ERA when creating his historical Wins Above Replacement database, and it is also used at Baseball-Reference. The main question here is whether you prefer FIP, which is more of a predictive stat, i.e. what should have happened, vs ERA which is a narrative stat, i.e. what did happen. We refer to these as fWAR and rWAR. 

Credit where credit is due

FIP was originally created by Tom Tango, based on McCracken’s DIPS theory.

This FIP primer at 3-D Baseball by The Book Blog regular Kincaid was a good reference, as well as the one that pointed out that balls in play are taken into account via our rescaling to ERA.


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431 thoughts on “The Stats We Use: FIP

  1. 1

    [quote name=melissa]I will be interested to see if Quade is going to be slow to pull his starting pitchers. I thought he left Demp and Z in too long. On Friday, since I was at the game I didn’t know Demp’s pitch count was that high but I did think he looked gassed and needed to be pulled. Yesterday, I thought he should have gone with Wood to start the 7th. They were behind but they usually want to get their relievers in the first couple of games so they don’t go too long without any game work. I’m not going to jump to any conclusions and I haven’t heard Quade talk about his “philosophy” in regard to pulling pitchers but I’m interested to see if this trend continues. Guess, I’m taking a wait and see approach. (dying laughing)[/quote]
    I had less of a problem with leaving Z in. He looked like crap early on but seemed to be settling down in the last few innings.

  2. 2

    I was only listening to the game yesterday so I couldn’t “see” what Z looked like. I just thought that where he was in his pitch count and it being early in the season that he should put in Wood since you want to get your relievers early work.

  3. 7

    [quote name=melissa]Why is Barney batting 2nd and Colvin 8th against a righty?[/quote]
    Grit and scrustle.

    Seriously though, I’d rather have Barney batting 8th and everyone move up one spot. Barney is the only non-pitcher who is less suited to batting 1-2 in any lineup than Colvin.

  4. 8

    [quote name=Berselius]

    Seriously though, I’d rather have Barney batting 8th and everyone move up one spot. Barney is the only non-pitcher who is less suited to batting 1-2 in any lineup than Colvin.[/quote]
    Agreed. I don’t think Colvin should hit 2nd either but he sure as hell shouldn’t bat 8th when Barney is also in the lineup. I’m really afraid that Quade thinks he likes Barney’s “speed” at the top of the lineup. (Insert facepalm here)

  5. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    10

    [quote name=melissa]I will be interested to see if Quade is going to be slow to pull his starting pitchers. I thought he left Demp and Z in too long. On Friday, since I was at the game I didn’t know Demp’s pitch count was that high but I did think he looked gassed and needed to be pulled. Yesterday, I thought he should have gone with Wood to start the 7th. They were behind but they usually want to get their relievers in the first couple of games so they don’t go too long without any game work. I’m not going to jump to any conclusions and I haven’t heard Quade talk about his “philosophy” in regard to pulling pitchers but I’m interested to see if this trend continues. Guess, I’m taking a wait and see approach. (dying laughing)[/quote][quote name=melissa]Agreed. I don’t think Colvin should hit 2nd either but he sure as hell shouldn’t bat 8th when Barney is also in the lineup. I’m really afraid that Quade thinks he likes Barney’s “speed” at the top of the lineup. (Insert facepalm here)[/quote]Anyone else getting the impression ol’ Baldy McGrindy is in a bit over his head?

  6. 11

    [quote name=melissa]Agreed. I don’t think Colvin should hit 2nd either but he sure as hell shouldn’t bat 8th when Barney is also in the lineup. I’m really afraid that Quade thinks he likes Barney’s “speed” at the top of the lineup. (Insert facepalm here)[/quote]
    I don’t think he wants Byrd batting 2nd, which I can kind of understand but moving Soto to 2, Soriano and Colvin up, and Barney to 8 makes way more sense than this…

  7. 12

    [quote name=Xoomwaffle]I don’t think he wants Byrd batting 2nd, which I can kind of understand but moving Soto to 2, Soriano and Colvin up, and Barney to 8 makes way more sense than this…[/quote]
    Bobby Cox batted McCann second/third, so it should be good enough for any manager.

    Edit: no my memory just sucks. McCann mainly bats 4/5

  8. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    13

    Byrd hitting third is really not smart. That dude has no discipline. Feels like he’s seen 5 pitches in 2 games. (dying laughing)

  9. 14

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]Byrd hitting third is really not smart. That dude has no discipline.[/quote]
    True. But who else would you put there? God this offense blows…

  10. 16

    [quote name=Xoomwaffle]True. But who else would you put there?[/quote]
    I would have no problem seeing Pena bat third against righties.

  11. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    17

    [quote name=Xoomwaffle]True. But who else would you put there? God this offense blows…[/quote]Soto. Maybe Pena.

  12. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    18

    [quote name=Berselius]HP points out that an even better option for today would be to sit Soriano and have Fuk lead off[/quote]But you can’t play both halves of the moroon on the same day!

  13. 19

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]But you can’t play both halves of the moroon on the same day![/quote]
    Still (dying laughing) at “moroon” here. Well done, Mish.

  14. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    20

    [quote name=Berselius]Still (dying laughing) at “moroon” here. Well done, Mish.[/quote]Excellent meme. Really well done.

  15. 21

    (dying laughing), Crawford was dropped to 7th today. Though I guess it was because BOS is facing a left hander.

  16. 24

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]Man, in the pic, Quade looks like he’s part mongoose, part Feringi.[/quote]
    Part burn victim

  17. 27

    [quote name=GBTS]I’m so glad you posted that, I’ve been looking for it for weeks.[/quote]All you had to do was ask.

  18. 29

    Either that or Ari said that Fukudome is 1-9 against Olehndorf, whereas Colvin and Barney have never faced him. Yeah, that must be it.

  19. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    30

    [quote name=Suburban Kid]Either that or Ari said that Fukudome is 1-9 against Olehndorf, whereas Colvin and Barney have never faced him. Yeah, that must be it.[/quote]You and I don’t often agree.

  20. 31

    Jack points out on twitter that starting Barney today is kind of dumb because of all the Cubs starters, Garza depends least on infield defense.

  21. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    32

    [quote name=Berselius]Jack points out on twitter that starting Barney today is kind of dumb because of all the Cubs starters, Garza depends least on infield defense.[/quote]And it puts a terrible glove in RF in Colvin, with a flyball pitcher on the mound.

  22. 33

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]And it puts a terrible glove in RF in Colvin, with a flyball pitcher on the mound.[/quote]
    OTOH you’d rather have Colvin in the lineup than Kosuke when the wind is howling out.

  23. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    34

    [quote name=Berselius]OTOH you’d rather have Colvin in the lineup than Kosuke when the wind is howling out.[/quote]Eh. Rather have the better glove out there on a windy day. Fuk can always jerk one out when he gets a pitch he can turn on, and has better discipline at the plate, too.

  24. 36

    [quote name=Berselius]OTOH you’d rather have Colvin in the lineup than Kosuke when the wind is howling out.[/quote]
    But it’s April! This is when you want Kosuke in the lineup most.

  25. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    39

    [quote name=Berselius]Over/under on HRs off Garza today has to be around 3 or so[/quote]In the first inning?

  26. 42

    I don’t mind Colvin and Barney playing. I’d rather they play every day to be honest. It’s not that I think each is better than the alternative. It’s because you may as well see what you have with these two players and unless you play them every day you’re never going to know.

    If the Cubs are in it come July or August then I’d agree with Jack, but I don’t much care who’s on the mound or what his tendencies are. I’d much rather watch Colvin and Barney play than the alternative.

  27. 43

    I’m fine with both of them in the lineup, I just think where they’re hitting is fucking dumb (dying laughing). Though as we know bitching about lineups is a relatively moot point.

  28. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    44

    [quote name=mb21]I don’t mind Colvin and Barney playing. I’d rather they play every day to be honest. It’s not that I think each is better than the alternative. It’s because you may as well see what you have with these two players and unless you play them every day you’re never going to know.

    If the Cubs are in it come July or August then I’d agree with Jack, but I don’t much care who’s on the mound or what his tendencies are. I’d much rather watch Colvin and Barney play than the alternative.[/quote]I suppose that’s fair. I just don’t like the manager making decision about the moroons that fly in face of reason. It’s compounding idiocy with stupidity. (dying laughing)

  29. 46

    [quote name=Berselius]I’m fine with both of them in the lineup, I just think where they’re hitting is fucking dumb (dying laughing). Though as we know bitching about lineups is a relatively moot point.[/quote]Here’s my 2 cents as far as lineups for this team goes this year: bat Castro, Colvin and Barney in the top 3 spots and let them get 700 or more plate appearances if they stay healthy. If Brett Jackson comes up then he goes to the number 1 spot. Actually, if it was my call, I’d trade Byrd and Fukudome for whatever I could possibly get and play Jackson in CF and Colvin in RF. If some outfielder in the minors gets off to a hot start, I’d then trade Soriano for whatever I could get.

    I want Colvin, Barney and Castro to get as many PA as possible, but I know that’s not going to happen with Colvin and Barney.

  30. 47

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]I suppose that’s fair. I just don’t like the manager making decision about the moroons that fly in face of reason. It’s compounding idiocy with stupidity. (dying laughing)[/quote]I don’t disagree. If this team wants to try and win games, Fukudome is playing the majority of the time in RF and Colvin/Soriano are platooning. Same with Baker/DeWitt.

  31. 48

    I still haven’t gotten around to fixing the game thread spreadsheet, but I’ll start posting those again tomorrow. I’ll get it worked out sometime today.

  32. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    49

    [quote name=mb21]I don’t disagree. If this team wants to try and win games, Fukudome is playing the majority of the time in RF and Colvin/Soriano are platooning. Same with Baker/DeWitt.[/quote]Yeah. I’m all for playing the kids, but if you must platoon them, at least do it so it makes sense. Color me unimpressed by Quade so far.

  33. 50

    (dying laughing), Javier Vazquez is sure showing me for picking him up in most of my fantasy leagues. First inning against the punchless mets

    double
    homer (to Willie Fucking Harris)
    walk
    single
    walk

  34. 51

    Pirates lineup

    lf tabata
    2b walker
    cf mccutchen
    1b overbay
    3b alvarez
    rf diaz
    c jaramillo
    ss cedeno
    p ohlendorf

    They’re countering Quade’s moroon by starting Diaz instead of Jones against a RHP

  35. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    52

    [quote name=Berselius]Pirates lineup

    lf tabata
    2b walker
    cf mccutchen
    1b overbay
    3b alvarez
    rf diaz
    c jaramillo
    ss cedeno
    p ohlendorf

    They’re countering Quade’s moroon by starting Diaz instead of Jones against a RHP[/quote]But Quade’s trumped them by fielding the double moroon.

  36. 53

    [quote name=Berselius]Pirates lineup

    lf tabata
    2b walker
    cf mccutchen
    1b overbay
    3b alvarez
    rf diaz
    c jaramillo
    ss cedeno
    p ohlendorf

    They’re countering Quade’s moroon by starting Diaz instead of Jones against a RHP[/quote]
    And now McCutcheon is a scratch with a stiff neck. This is going to be baseball at its finest.

  37. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    54

    [quote name=AndCounting]And now McCutcheon is a scratch with a stiff neck. This is going to be baseball at its finest.[/quote]Let’s See What Happens.

  38. 56

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]Let’s See What Happens.[/quote]Kidding or not, that would make a much better slogan than “A Way of Life” ever was.

  39. 59

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]For a guy who purports to understand metrics and probability, that’s an odd thing to write. I’d have expected that kind of tautologous treacle from Johnny Cakes.[/quote]
    I think you’re making the mistake of assuming that Len or Bob wrote it.

  40. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    61

    [quote name=Berselius]I think you’re making the mistake of assuming that Len or Bob wrote it.[/quote](dying laughing), I always forget about Jimmy Greenfield.

  41. 63

    [quote name=Aisle424]The Matt Garza Era about to begin. I’m all tingly to see our new ace.[/quote]So are the ballhawks out on Waveland and Sheffield

  42. 64

    [quote name=Aisle424]The Matt Garza Era about to begin. I’m all tingly to see our new ace.[/quote]

    Only with the Cubs does “ace” mean “#3 pitcher.”

  43. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    68

    [quote name=Manni Stats]I appreciate you fagets liking and running with my “moroon” nomenclature.[/quote]We’re such meme-whores.

  44. 71

    [quote name=Manni Stats]Hey admins – can someone change my name back to Mish or can I do it myself?[/quote]What, you realized you’d soon be called MS?

  45. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    75

    [quote name=Suburban Kid]Castro fucked up the tag but the ump didn’t see that.[/quote]Human Element!

  46. 76

    [quote name=Suburban Kid]Castro fucked up the tag but the ump didn’t see that.[/quote]
    Makeup call from yesterday’s “non-pickoff” at first.

  47. 85

    [quote name=AndCounting]Nice, Starlin with the leadoff walk. TOOTBLAN avoidance mode now.[/quote]
    GIDP doesn’t count, right?

  48. 89

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]Nice. On ESPN’s Gamecast, they put the run expectancy up with each out.[/quote]
    Right now it’s zero because the #2 and #3 guys shouldn’t have been batting there.

  49. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    90

    [quote name=Rice Cube]Right now it’s zero because the #2 and #3 guys shouldn’t have been batting there.[/quote]The Cubs’ run expectancy is always 0. (dying laughing)

  50. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    92

    Byrd was not very good after the ASB last year, and he’s cold to start the year. I’m starting to be worried about him.

  51. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    93

    [quote name=Rice Cube]I like the part where nobody’s taken Garza out of the park yet.[/quote]I like the part where Garza is beating the strike zone like a running mule.

  52. 94

    Could someone explain to me why it’s important to give a kid like Barney more at bats than DeWitt? DeWitt is 2 1/2 months older. To this point in their careers DeWitt has been better and the age should be irrelevant since they are the same age.

  53. 95

    Me wonders if Garza is trying to do something to limit the amount of fly balls. The number of ground ball hits for him is odd, but it’s also a very small sample. I am including what I’ve heard in spring training.

  54. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    98

    [quote name=melissa]Could someone explain to me why it’s important to give a kid like Barney more at bats than DeWitt? DeWitt is 2 1/2 months older. To this point in their careers DeWitt has been better and the age should be irrelevant since they are the same age.[/quote]DeWitt is not a very good defender, but that doesn’t matter today. On the whole, it’s a push. Neither player is very good, but at least DeWitt-Baker would make for a natural platoon.

  55. 100

    [quote name=Suburban Kid]Castro fucked up the tag but the ump didn’t see that.[/quote] It wasn’t as bad as how he handled those short hops last year when he’d start with his glove on the ground and come up. He still had to come up, which is not what you want, but he didn’t have to come up as high to field it. He’s learning.

  56. 106

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]21 pitches on the inning for Garza so far[/quote]I don’t think he made a single bad pitch the entire inning.

  57. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    108

    [quote name=AndCounting]I don’t think he made a single bad pitch the entire inning.[/quote]Yeah, maybe throwing a few too many strikes, though.

  58. 109

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]And now the real hitters get to bat. (dying laughing)[/quote]
    Now now, Castro had a good at-bat…(dying laughing)

  59. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    113

    [quote name=Rice Cube]Now now, Castro had a good at-bat…(dying laughing)[/quote]Yeah, I meant that mroe for Barney and Sir K-A-Lot

  60. 116

    [quote name=mb21]What a play by Alvarez. That was impressive.

    I know MO hates the bunt, but that’s a smart move by Pena.[/quote]
    I thought he was going to make it, that was really quick reaction by Alvarez.

  61. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    117

    If Pena did that one hsi own, it is what is. If Quade sacrificed Pena, he’s dead to me. Forever.

  62. 120

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]If Pena did that one hsi own, it is what is. If Quade sacrificed Pena, he’s dead to me. Forever.[/quote]
    Quade may be dead to me soon but I think Pena decided to try that to get on base. I don’t think that was a sac bunt. It would have worked too if Alvarez didn’t make a spectacular throw.

  63. 121

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]Fire. Mike. Quade. Now.[/quote]Yeah, there’s no way that was from Quade. With the shift on, he was going for a hit and almost had one.

  64. 123

    I saw it brought up recently, but the reason you need to bunt on occasion is to keep the defense honest. If you never bunt the defense plays back it’s a lot harder to hit it through the infield. If you bunt on occasion, the defense is forced to come in and it opens up the holes on the infield.

    If you let the defense just play back all the time, you’re giving the defense an unnecessary advantage. Pena showing bunt yesterday and then bunting today forces the 3rd baseman to move closer to the 3rd base bag. It creates a bigger hole where Pena is more likely to hit one on the ground. He’ll almost never hit a grounder to 3rd base, which is why they put the shift on, but he will hit one on the left side of the 2nd base bag. That hole is open now.

    You want to do it just enough so that the defense doesn’t have the advantage.

  65. 124

    Pena shouldn’t have been given a SH. Not that it matters, but he clearly wasn’t sacrificing himself. The rules are fairly clear yet the scorers don’t give a shit.

  66. 126

    Johnny Cakes also mentioned that Pena works a lot on laying that bunt down. I agree with MB that it helps keep the defense more honest and it should help negate the shift advantage.

  67. 129

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]Glad they gave away an out that inning, seeing as they made such great use of the other two.[/quote]
    He was busting down the line though. It could very well have been a hit.

  68. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    130

    [quote name=Suburban Kid]Pena says he bunts about once a month to try to keep the opposition from shifting on him too severely.[/quote]Yeah, that makes sense. Like I said, if he did it on his own, for that reason, it is what it is.

  69. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    131

    [quote name=Suburban Kid]I wish he wouldn’t do it in his first at bat of a game, and in an RBI situation, though.[/quote]Exactly. No point to it. You’re here to mash, Carlos, so fucking mash.

  70. 132

    [quote name=Suburban Kid]I wish he wouldn’t do it in his first at bat of a game, and in an RBI situation, though.[/quote]
    The runner was on first so not really an rbi situation.

  71. 134

    Garza’s missing high according to the K-zone. He’s lucky they haven’t teed off yet. But the hits are dropping.

  72. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    135

    [quote name=melissa]The runner was on first so not really an rbi situation.[/quote]Still, he’s not here to do shit like that. I guarantee not one less team will shift on Pena because of the threat of a bunt single. Plus, no team can shift to compensate a 2-run dinger. Swing that damn bat, it’s what you’re here to do.

  73. 136

    [quote name=Suburban Kid]I wish he wouldn’t do it in his first at bat of a game, and in an RBI situation, though.[/quote]I don’t know. There’s a 75% chance that if he does it again in that spot it’s a base hit. In fact, I’d say it’s a 50% chance of him getting a base hit bunting if he’s intending to bunt. He’s not going to beat that swinging away. If they leave the 3rd baseman up the middle all the time then Pena would be better off bunting in every PA. He’d probably bat .650/.800/.650. I’ll take that.

  74. 137

    [quote name=melissa]The runner was on first so not really an rbi situation.[/quote]
    When Carlos bats with nobody on its should be an RBI situation. He’s here to hit homeruns. That said, I don’t have a problem with him keeping defenses honest, but he’s squared around at least 3 times in the last two days.

  75. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    138

    [quote name=Rice Cube]Garza’s missing high according to the K-zone. He’s lucky they haven’t teed off yet. But the hits are dropping.[/quote]High, but no over the heart of the plate. Mostly missing up and outside it seems.

  76. 139

    I would argue that the opposing team would rather he be on first base than taking a slow jog around the basepaths on his way home. So in that sense, a habitual bunt would be stupid.

  77. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    140

    [quote name=Aisle424]When Carlos bats with nobody on its should be an RBI situation. He’s here to hit homeruns. That said, I don’t have a problem with him keeping defenses honest, but he’s squared around at least 3 times in the last two days.[/quote]Almost as if he were being encouraged to do so by the My Favorite Martian set extra in the Cubs dugout…

  78. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    142

    [quote name=Rice Cube]I would argue that the opposing team would rather he be on first base than taking a slow jog around the basepaths on his way home. So in that sense, a habitual bunt would be stupid.[/quote]Exactly. I Pena would rather bunt than swing away, I’d shift on him every fucking AB. Much rather he’d single than put one over the fence.

  79. 143

    The Pirates have shown in this series that they just don’t care if the other team bunts. They don’t really defend against it. And if they’re going to allow you to bunt for a hit, you do it. Whoever is at the plate is there to not make an out. If they give you a high probability shot to get on base, you should take it.

  80. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    144

    [quote name=melissa]Aramis made a shitty throw and Barney took forever to get over and cover the bag.[/quote]This club…do they do anything well? (dying laughing)

  81. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    145

    [quote name=AndCounting]The Pirates have shown in this series that they just don’t care if the other team bunts. They don’t really defend against it. And if they’re going to allow you to bunt for a hit, you do it. Whoever is at the plate is there to not make an out. If they give you a high probability shot to get on base, you should take it.[/quote]
    That’s fine for Darwin Barney, but I want Pena swinging away.

  82. 146

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]This club…do they do anything well? (dying laughing)[/quote]
    Don’t you like anything?

  83. 147

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]Exactly. I Pena would rather bunt than swing away, I’d shift on him every fucking AB. Much rather he’d single than put one over the fence.[/quote]If they shift like that with reckless abandon, he’ll hit .750. I’ll take that.

  84. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    150

    [quote name=AndCounting]If they shift like that with reckless abandon, he’ll hit .750. I’ll take that.[/quote]I’d rather have the 30 dongs and 90 ribbies.

  85. 151

    [quote name=Rice Cube]I would argue that the opposing team would rather he be on first base than taking a slow jog around the basepaths on his way home. So in that sense, a habitual bunt would be stupid.[/quote]
    Pena isn’t Adam Dunn. He had 28 homers last year. In the situation today it took a spectacular defensive play to get him out. Probably better chance of him getting on in that specific situation than getting a hit through the right side of the infield. He avoided the double play and he did get the runner in scoring position. I don’t think it was a bad play in the situation today and I’m not a fan of the bunt.

  86. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    152

    [quote name=Aisle424]Pander.[/quote](dying laughing)
    (dying laughing)
    (dying laughing)
    (dying laughing)

  87. 153

    [quote name=AndCounting]The Pirates have shown in this series that they just don’t care if the other team bunts. They don’t really defend against it. And if they’re going to allow you to bunt for a hit, you do it. Whoever is at the plate is there to not make an out. If they give you a high probability shot to get on base, you should take it.[/quote]
    That kind of feeds into the wOBA discussion from the last “Stats We Use” thread though…the home run or an extra base hit is less probable, but is worth more in the weights. At what point do you say it’s no longer worth it to trade a bunch of bunt singles for a homer or a double that puts the guy in scoring position?

  88. 154

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]46 pitches already for Garza. Almost no chance he makes it past 7 at this rate.[/quote]
    Quade ignores pitch counts, let’s see what happens.

  89. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    155

    [quote name=melissa]Pena isn’t Adam Dunn. He had 28 homers last year. In the situation today it took a spectacular defensive play to get him out. Probably better chance of him getting on in that specific situation than getting a hit through the right side of the infield. He avoided the double play and he did get the runner in scoring position. I don’t think it was a bad play in the situation today and I’m not a fan of the bunt.[/quote]I’m not saying it doesn’t make sense; I’m just saying I wouldn’t do it, but that’s mostly a philosophical point.

  90. 156

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]I’d rather have the 30 dongs and 90 ribbies.[/quote]And 150 strikeouts. You can have it all. I’ll take the easy single.

  91. 157

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]I’m not saying it doesn’t make sense; I’m just saying I wouldn’t do it, but that’s mostly a philosophical point.[/quote]
    I think it’s a bit more than philosophical though. The argument seems to be that you’d want Pena batting .750 on bunt singles. You’re paying a guy $10M over three years then to play first base on defense and be a poor man’s Ichiro on offense. But Pena is a guy you want to get the doubles and homers. Beat the shift by hitting it over their heads.

  92. 158

    [quote name=Rice Cube]That kind of feeds into the wOBA discussion from the last “Stats We Use” thread though…the home run or an extra base hit is less probable, but is worth more in the weights. At what point do you say it’s no longer worth it to trade a bunch of bunt singles for a homer or a double that puts the guy in scoring position?[/quote]
    If the defense plays in such a way that you can bunt safely 75% of the time, you’d post a .675 wOBA if you could make that happen. Again, I’ll take that.

  93. 160

    [quote name=Rice Cube]I would argue that the opposing team would rather he be on first base than taking a slow jog around the basepaths on his way home. So in that sense, a habitual bunt would be stupid.[/quote]They’d rather he be on first base than hit a home run, sure, but rather be on first base 80% of the time he steps into the plate. If they positioned themselves as they did yesterday, he could easily get on base that much. Easily.

  94. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    161

    [quote name=AndCounting]And 150 strikeouts. You can have it all. I’ll take the easy single.[/quote]So you’d like to turn Pena into Oddibe McDowell. No thanks. I’ll take the K’s and the runs.

  95. 162

    Of course, the Cubs are reaching base on 0% of their bunt attempts against this defense, I think, so the small sample size is beating the shit out of our argument. (dying laughing)

  96. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    163

    Let’s also not forget that with the Cubs’ offense all getting a single means is that you got a single. There’s not a great chance with this bunch that baserunners mean runs. (dying laughing)

  97. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    165

    [quote name=AndCounting]Of course, the Cubs are reaching base on 0% of their bunt attempts against this defense, I think, so the small sample size is beating the shit out of our argument. (dying laughing)[/quote](dying laughing), only the Cubs could fuck this up.

  98. 166

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]So you’d like to turn Pena into Oddibe McDowell. No thanks. I’ll take the K’s and the runs.[/quote]I’d argue that there was a higher probability on that play of the throw the 3B made getting away and allowing the runner to score than there was of Pena hitting a homer.

  99. 167

    [quote name=AndCounting]If the defense plays in such a way that you can bunt safely 75% of the time, you’d post a .675 wOBA if you could make that happen. Again, I’ll take that.[/quote]
    I can see that and I think you guys make a good point. I guess you’d rather have a Daric Barton type 1B (defense, OBP) than a Miguel Cabrera type who will kill the ball. I’d like to see a high OBP but then you’re basically relying on the other guys to drive him in, which as we’ve seen so far isn’t all that commonplace (dying laughing)

    If you want him to get on base that much, it reminds me of when that lineup generator I found had Pena as the optimal leadoff guy for this lineup. They should try that.

  100. 168

    [quote name=Rice Cube]I think it’s a bit more than philosophical though. The argument seems to be that you’d want Pena batting .750 on bunt singles. You’re paying a guy $10M over three years then to play first base on defense and be a poor man’s Ichiro on offense. But Pena is a guy you want to get the doubles and homers. Beat the shift by hitting it over their heads.[/quote]
    It wouldn’t really be a poor man’s Ichiro. We’re talking about the best player in the history of the entire game if they positioned themselves that way all the time. Better than A-Rod, Pujols, Bonds, Ruth. Actually, it wouldn’t even be close.

    We’re talking about a .670 wOBA or thereabouts. That’s worth close to 18 wins per season (WAR).

    Consider that the Pirates defense shifted over about 15 to 20 feet after he showed bunt. The Pirates were trying to move as far to that side as possible to take the single away while still using the shift. The Pirates told us they’d rather he not have that single and for good reason. Pena would not only win NL MVP, but if he put a few of those years together, he’s going into the HOF.

  101. 169

    [quote name=AndCounting]Of course, the Cubs are reaching base on 0% of their bunt attempts against this defense, I think, so the small sample size is beating the shit out of our argument. (dying laughing)[/quote](dying laughing)

  102. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    170

    [quote name=AndCounting]I’d argue that there was a higher probability on that play of the throw the 3B made getting away and allowing the runner to score than there was of Pena hitting a homer.[/quote]Perhaps, but now it just becomes an ever-narrowing hyopthetical. Like I said, it’s a philosophical difference. I prefer for guys that can mash to swing away. Pena took the bat out of his own hands, on my view. I don’t like that.

  103. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    174

    I’ve never liked the exaggerated shift, FWIW. It seems like it doesn’t really have the effect it’s assumed to have. Is there anything out there about this? Seems like the kind of thing MGL would have written about, seeing as he delights in viciously debunking things. (dying laughing)

  104. 175

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]I think the Cubs should start shifting vs. Pujols. I’d much rather he bunt. (dying laughing)[/quote]I’d be curious to see what he’d do if they played with six outfielders when he came to bat.

  105. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    176

    [quote name=AndCounting]I’d be curious to see what he’d do if they played with six outfielders when he came to bat.[/quote]Die laughing.

  106. 181

    Relating to this post, excellent write-up Berselius. I’d add one thing: Rally’s WAR uses ERA as you mentioned, but he takes out the defensive value of the fielders by taking the team Total Zone and adjusts the runs allowed based on that and the percentage of innings pitched by that pitcher.

  107. 183

    [quote name=melissa]2 on and no out. How do the Cubs manage to not score? I say strikeout, double play.[/quote]Or do like the White Sox and sacrifice bunt into a triple play. (dying laughing)

  108. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    184

    [quote name=melissa]2 on and no out. How do the Cubs manage to not score? I say strikeout, double play.[/quote]TOOTBLAN, K-CS DP.

  109. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    187

    [quote name=AndCounting]Or do like the White Sox and sacrifice bunt into a triple play. (dying laughing)[/quote]My head might explode if that happened.

  110. 194

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]I’ve never liked the exaggerated shift, FWIW. It seems like it doesn’t really have the effect it’s assumed to have. Is there anything out there about this? Seems like the kind of thing MGL would have written about, seeing as he delights in viciously debunking things. (dying laughing)[/quote]He covered bunts extensively in The Book. I think it was about 50 pages. It’s really about game theory. The defense wants to position itself close enough to take the bunt away because a good one is a sure hit, but far enough back to prevent balls from going between the fielders.

  111. 195

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]58.5% chance of scoring more than 2 runs this inning.[/quote]
    Did you adjust this with the Cubs Fuck-up Scoring Factor?

  112. 196

    Think about a runner on 3rd base. He takes his lead as far away from the bag as the fielder is.

    GONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    (dying laughing)

    Oh no, thought that was way out.

  113. 200

    I don’t know how that stayed in the park on a windy day. It looked like some bleacher fuck dropped his beer on the fielder going after the ball.

  114. 202

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]Aaaaaaand that’s why Pena should be swinging away.[/quote]
    Especially when they have to throw him a strike with the bases loaded and no outs (dying laughing)

  115. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    203

    [quote name=mb21]He covered bunts extensively in The Book. I think it was about 50 pages. It’s really about game theory. The defense wants to position itself close enough to take the bunt away because a good one is a sure hit, but far enough back to prevent balls from going between the fielders.[/quote]I don’t mean for the batter. I mean for defense. To what extent does the shift work? Seems to me all it does is take away a handful of pull singles.

  116. 207

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]82% chance of scoring more than 3 runs.[/quote]
    Pessimism cat just struck.

  117. 208

    In an inning that sees the Cubs score two runs, the Wrigley faithful are booing Soriano for getting under one. WGF.

  118. 213

    I imagine the shift takes a lot of hits away when you consider all the players that the defense puts the shift on. Think about where that 2nd baseman is positioned. It’s like shallow RF. That allows the CF to take a step to his right and the RF can play back a few more steps. Plus, it’s so rare for someone like Pena to hit the ball on the ground to that side of the field. There’s really no reason to have a fielder over there. It means you have 4 fielders covering a smaller area so balls that would be hits become outs.

  119. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    215

    [quote name=Aisle424]Alvin has declared that the beer spill was an accident. So sayeth he from the left field bleachers.[/quote]Must be nice for the Cubs to have a free PR guy. (dying laughing)

  120. 216

    [quote name=Aisle424]Alvin has declared that the beer spill was an accident. So sayeth he from the left field bleachers.[/quote]
    He has incredibly sharp eyes.

  121. 217

    [quote name=Suburban Kid]WGF?[/quote]Thanks for asking. I thought I was too far behind the texting lingo and didn’t want to make myself seem older than I am.

  122. 218

    [quote name=Aisle424]Alvin has declared that the beer spill was an accident. So sayeth he from the left field bleachers.[/quote]I’m in Topeka, Kansas and am as qualified to tell people what happened out there as Al is.

  123. 219

    What kind of a dumbass tries to reach for a ball while holding a full cup of beer with both hands? “Accident” is too kind, even if it was completely unintentional.

  124. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    220

    The Cubs just failed to accomplish something that had a ~87% chance of occurring.

    It’s A Way of Life.

  125. 221

    [quote name=mb21]Thanks for asking. I thought I was too far behind the texting lingo and didn’t want to make myself seem older than I am.[/quote]I have no such shame. (dying laughing)

  126. 227

    [quote name=Rice Cube]Is the Pirates’ offense better than the Cubs?[/quote]Probably not, but the Cubs offense isn’t very good.

  127. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    228

    [quote name=Aisle424]Harry and Chris DeLuca getting into it on Twitter is hilarious. Harry is winning.[/quote]DeLuca is a real asshat.

  128. 229

    [quote name=Aisle424]Harry and Chris DeLuca getting into it on Twitter is hilarious. Harry is winning.[/quote]
    DeLuca is an idiot

  129. 231

    [quote name=mb21]What the hell is it with all the groundball hits against Garza?[/quote]
    It’s bizarro world out there.

  130. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    233

    [quote name=mb21]What the hell is it with all the groundball hits against Garza?[/quote]Vs. the best IF defense the Cubs can field, no less.

  131. 235

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]Vs. the best IF defense the Cubs can field, no less.[/quote]Sometimes the luck dragon eats you

  132. 244

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]More average speed from Starlin.[/quote]
    (dying laughing) You and I don’t often agree..

  133. 245

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]More average speed from Starlin.[/quote]It looks slow from left field. You’re not there.

  134. 246

    This “how many errors Pena saves” talk is never going to end, is it? So does Bob assume every ball in the dirt is an error saved? Even though most balls in the dirt to the 1st baseman are dug out successfully by any competent 1st baseman?

    I’m sure Pena is good defensively, but it’s not like the Cubs didn’t just have a very good defender for the last 7 seasons.

  135. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    247

    [quote name=mb21]This “how many errors Pena saves” talk is never going to end, is it? So does Bob assume every ball in the dirt is an error saved? Even though most balls in the dirt to the 1st baseman are dug out successfully by any competent 1st baseman?

    I’m sure Pena is good defensively, but it’s not like the Cubs didn’t just have a very good defender for the last 7 seasons.[/quote]Bob needs talking points, otherwise we’re going to have to listen to stories about the WS title he didn’t have anything to do with. (dying laughing)

    Fucking Brenly. Horrible color man.

  136. 248

    [quote name=mb21]This “how many errors Pena saves” talk is never going to end, is it? So does Bob assume every ball in the dirt is an error saved? Even though most balls in the dirt to the 1st baseman are dug out successfully by any competent 1st baseman?

    I’m sure Pena is good defensively, but it’s not like the Cubs didn’t just have a very good defender for the last 7 seasons.[/quote]Correct.

  137. 250

    [quote name=mb21]This “how many errors Pena saves” talk is never going to end, is it? So does Bob assume every ball in the dirt is an error saved? Even though most balls in the dirt to the 1st baseman are dug out successfully by any competent 1st baseman?

    I’m sure Pena is good defensively, but it’s not like the Cubs didn’t just have a very good defender for the last 7 seasons.[/quote]
    I think we’re going to hear a lot of it. Barry Rozner was preaching it this morning on the radio. Said Pena is much better fielder than Lee and probably as good or better than Grace in his best defensive season. Apparently Steve Stone has sent out the memo: Pena–> good at defense.

  138. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    251

    [quote name=mb21]I imagine the shift takes a lot of hits away when you consider all the players that the defense puts the shift on. Think about where that 2nd baseman is positioned. It’s like shallow RF. That allows the CF to take a step to his right and the RF can play back a few more steps. Plus, it’s so rare for someone like Pena to hit the ball on the ground to that side of the field. There’s really no reason to have a fielder over there. It means you have 4 fielders covering a smaller area so balls that would be hits become outs.[/quote]This should have been a FanPost.

  139. 252

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]Bob needs talking points, otherwise we’re going to have to listen to stories about the WS title he didn’t have anything to do with. (dying laughing)

    Fucking Brenly. Horrible color man.[/quote]
    Well, he did finally realize that Byung-hyun Kim probably wasn’t too comfortable in close-out situations (dying laughing)

  140. 256

    [quote name=Rice Cube]A grounder by the pitcher for a hit. Not his day.[/quote]Shit, I’m two batters behind.

  141. 257

    10 k’s, no walks. Nothing really hit hard off him today except the long fly out to RF. Pretty good start for Garza considering he gave up 47,000 hits that usually won’t happen.

  142. 267

    [quote name=mb21]GONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!![/quote]I have to stop refreshing comments. I saw this during the commercial.

  143. 272

    [quote name=melissa]Lazy Latin launches homer and l o llygags out of the box.[/quote]Bob didn’t mind though, because he knew where it was headed this time.

  144. 275

    [quote name=mb21]That slider low and in to the lefty is a really good pitch for Garza[/quote]
    Isn’t that slider a pitch that is normally thrown to same handed batters? Seems like it would look like a straight pitch to a Lefty. Doesn’t matter if its effective though.

  145. 277

    [quote name=melissa]Another triple with Castro’s average speed? Unpossible[/quote]No, triples on balls hit to the left field corner are pretty standard in the MLB.

  146. 278

    That particular slider is where a lot of right handers bury sliders against lefties. It starts out on the inside corner and looks like a strike and by the time it’s at the plate it’s well below your knees and inside a few inches. Very tough to hit.

  147. 279

    [quote name=GBTS]No, triples on balls hit to the left field corner are pretty standard in the MLB.[/quote]Standard in the sandlot league I play in too.

  148. 281

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]Man, if Castro had more than average speed, he might turn into something special.[/quote]
    If he was any faster he’d be getting inside-the-park homers on a bunt single.

  149. 282

    The average speed remark from Goldstein was quite possibly the dumbest thing I’ve ever read on BP.

    Garza is really settling in now.

  150. 283

    [quote name=Rice Cube]If he was any faster he’d be getting inside-the-park homers on a bunt single.[/quote]
    He’s too lazy for that. He’s been corrupted by Soriano.

  151. 284

    [quote name=Rice Cube]If he was any faster he’d be getting inside-the-park homers on a bunt single.[/quote]Then MO would hate him. (dying laughing)

  152. 285

    [quote name=Aisle424]He’s too lazy for that. He’s been corrupted by Soriano.[/quote]And Ramirez. See how Ramirez went down to his knees there. Too lazy to even stand up and throw it.

  153. 286

    Man…good try by Ramirez but I almost think Castro would have a better play on that if he’d just let it go by.

  154. 288

    This has been a good debut for Garza. He needed this to not get off on the wrong foot with Cubs “fans”

  155. 291

    [quote name=Berselius]This has been a good debut for Garza. He needed this to not get off on the wrong foot with Cubs “fans”[/quote]
    I agree, I was worried when I heard the wind was blowing out before the game.

  156. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    292

    [quote name=Berselius]This has been a good debut for Garza. He needed this to not get off on the wrong foot with Cubs “fans”[/quote]Yeah, really good debut. Although the troglodytes will probably seize on the hits and runs allowed. Be interesting to see how the dispatches from Hobbiton are worded.

  157. 293

    [quote name=mb21]12 strikeouts, 12 hits, no walks. Bet that’s never been done.[/quote]

    LOB% luck dragon has battled BABIP luck dragon to a standstill.

  158. 294

    [quote name=Mish]Hah I just saw the harry/Chris De Luca exchange on twitter. That guy’s a fucking retard.[/quote]I love that he couldn’t cope with a slash line. Whoa! You dazzle me with your scientific numbers!

  159. 296

    [quote name=Berselius]I think the 12 k 0 bb will go the longest way. Lou loves guys go throw fucking strikes [/quote].

  160. 297

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]Yeah, really good debut. Although the troglodytes will probably seize on the hits and runs allowed. Be interesting to see how the dispatches from Hobbiton are worded.[/quote]
    “Matt Garza battled the elements today at Wrigley Field as the wind shifted position many times. Garza also weathered 12 base hits, none of them hit hard, as he allowed 3 runs in 7 hard fought innings pitching.” — Cubs beat writer

  161. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    300

    [quote name=Suburban Kid]I love that he couldn’t cope with a slash line. Whoa! You dazzle me with your scientific numbers![/quote]The numbers don’t tell the whole story exchange was priceless.

  162. 302

    Barney with the fake hustle dive when it’s clear he won’t come within 10 feet of the ball. He’s a quick study.

  163. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    303

    [quote name=melissa]Barney with the fake hustle dive when it’s clear he won’t come within 10 feet of the ball. He’s a quick study.[/quote]Johnny Cakes has found his new crush, nethinks.

  164. 308

    [quote name=Berselius]Who was it that called theriot out for false hustle last year? Trammel?[/quote]
    Correct

  165. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    309

    [quote name=Berselius]Who was it that called theriot out for false hustle last year? Trammel?[/quote]Trammell. “Phony hustle.” Epic.

  166. 310

    That’s The beauty of short hops.

    Also holy shit Colvin! What is the thing you call fundamental baseball?

  167. 316

    When does my love for Castro become borderline gay? For real? Is there anyway that this kid isnt insanely special? I mean What if the ceiling really is between Jeter and hanley?

  168. 318

    There are plenty of ways he’s not “insanely special.” He has the potential to be very, very good, but he’s not yet a finished product. A lot can happen before that happens.

  169. 321

    Colvin’s throw was PERFECT but Soto also deserves some credit on that play. Looks like the other teams won’t need any KOOGYs.

  170. 322

    [quote name=mb21]There are plenty of ways he’s not “insanely special.” He has the potential to be very, very good, but he’s not yet a finished product. A lot can happen before that happens.[/quote]
    I get that but i mean he is so young and he looks a lot bigger than last year and seems to be tattooing the ball with authority. I just dont see what can go wrong with this kid. Every now and then you hit the jackpot and the uber prospect develops into the superstar. Maybe it happened…

    /3 games in

  171. 323

    Soto’s just getting under those pitches that he’s been popping out on today.

    Which is a bit of a captain obvious statement.

  172. 324

    [quote name=Suburban Kid]Colvin’s throw was PERFECT but Soto also deserves some credit on that play. Looks like the other teams won’t need any KOOGYs.[/quote]That’s too bad because the Cubs have a few KOOGYs they’d like to trade.

  173. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    326

    [quote name=Rice Cube]Soto’s just getting under those pitches that he’s been popping out on today.

    Which is a bit of a captain obvious statement.[/quote]You sound like you’ve sat in the back row of the bleachers a few times.

  174. 327

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]You sound like you’ve sat in the back row of the bleachers a few times.[/quote]
    Won’t sit in the bleachers until July of this year…but yeah, that was a derp (dying laughing)

  175. 328

    [quote name=bubblesdachimp]i despise leadoff walks[/quote]I hate them even more when they’re followed by singles.

  176. 329

    Well if tghere is one person i trust to K 2 when i need 2 k’d its marmol…

    I also expect a wild pitch to tie the game…

    THis si fucking outrageous of a delay

  177. 339

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]Either my Gamecast is frozen or something’s going on. Injury? What gives?[/quote]
    There was a delay because Hurdle was arguing his runner was safe on his sac bunt attempt. He wasn’t safe, Aramis’ throw pulled Barney off the bag but he tagged the runner and the runner never even stepped on first.

  178. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    341

    [quote name=melissa]There was a delay because Hurdle was arguing his runner was safe on his sac bunt attempt. He wasn’t safe, Aramis’ throw pulled Barney off the bag but he tagged the runner and the runner never even stepped on first.[/quote]This does not surprise me. Clint Hurdle is one of my least favorite persons, ever.

  179. 343

    [quote name=bubblesdachimp]Why is reed pinch hitting here instead of dome or dewitt[/quote]
    Because he looks better striking out.

  180. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    345

    [quote name=bubblesdachimp]Why is reed pinch hitting here instead of dome or dewitt[/quote]Reed came in last inning for defense in LF.

  181. 346

    [quote name=bubblesdachimp]Why is reed pinch hitting here instead of dome or dewitt[/quote]He was actually already in the game for defensive purposes. He’s the left fielder now.

  182. 348

    [quote name=bubblesdachimp]Why is reed pinch hitting here instead of dome or dewitt[/quote]
    He isn’t pinch hitting, he was a defensive replacement for Sori in the top of the inning.

  183. 349

    [quote name=bubblesdachimp]Why is reed pinch hitting here instead of dome or dewitt[/quote]
    Because they put him in left as a defensive replacement in the ninth. So the question should be why was Johnson used as a defensive replacement instead of Fukudome.

  184. 350

    [quote name=Corms]Because they put him in left as a defensive replacement in the ninth. So the question should be why was Johnson used as a defensive replacement instead of Fukudome.[/quote]
    I know the answer. Colvin threw a runner out at home so he’s obviously better in right than Fuk.

  185. 351

    [quote name=Corms]Because they put him in left as a defensive replacement in the ninth. So the question should be why was Johnson used as a defensive replacement instead of Fukudome.[/quote]
    That is a better question.

  186. 352

    (dying laughing)

    appearently bubles was the only person who didnt know that reed was in left as a replacement

    Castro is so good.

    .400?

  187. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    357

    [quote name=Suburban Kid]Lot of empty seats at Wrigley.[/quote]Might has well build a macro for this statement. Probably be saying it every home game.

  188. 363

    [quote name=bubblesdachimp](dying laughing)
    (dying laughing)
    (dying laughing)

    CEDENO!!!!![/quote]You can take the player from the Cubs’ middle infield, but you can’t take the Cubs’ middle infield out of the player.

  189. 364

    Well that sucked.. Maybe our probably 7th best hitter shouldnt bat third? Maybe Castro should hit third?

  190. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    365

    I’m developing a serious dislike for Byrd, or at least Byrd hitting anywhere above 5. The man has no patience or zone judgement, at all. He just goes up there and swings the bat.

  191. 367

    I really thought that ball was hit slow enough to score the run… For real..

    Day is not ruined though…

    Wrestlemania coming up

  192. 368

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]I’m developing a serious dislike for Byrd, or at least Byrd hitting anywhere above 5. The man has no patience or zone judgement, at all. He just goes up there and swings the bat.[/quote]

    Yea i just dont get it… I really dont

  193. 371

    If there is one game situation when you shouldn’t swing at the first pitch, that was it.

    I realize Byrd could have worked the count full and still GIDP’d, but they had the pitcher on the ropes and he just let him off the hook. (that was a moroon of a mixed metaphor but whatver (dying laughing))

  194. 374

    This was the first game I’ve listened to this season, and after Colvin cut down that runner at home I was waiting for an “OH YES” from Ron.

    Sigh.

  195. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    376

    [quote name=melissa]Quade letting Reed bat in the 9th was just a wasted at bat.[/quote]But the veteran leadership Reed showed in that AB will last forever.

  196. 377

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]But the veteran leadership Reed showed in that AB will last forever.[/quote]
    You and I don’t often agree but correct.

  197. 379

    [quote name=GBTS]This was the first game I’ve listened to this season, and after Colvin cut down that runner at home I was waiting for an “OH YES” from Ron.

    Sigh.[/quote]I felt the same way. You hear Pat all excited and realize something really big is missing.

    All in all though, I loved this game. Starlin Castro is 21. And the team that surrounds him is not good, but still watchable, I think. When the games are competitive, they’re fun to watch. Yeah, I wish they would have won, but this was enjoyable.

  198. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    380

    [quote name=GBTS]Mike Quade in the post-game on why Reed Johnson pinch hit in the ninth: “Reed’s a gamer.”[/quote]The speed of Quade’s ascent up my shit list is nothing short of remarkable.

  199. 381

    [quote name=GBTS]Mike Quade in the post-game on why Reed Johnson pinch hit in the ninth: “Reed’s a gamer.”[/quote]That’s what happens when you recruit your new manager from Lamb’s Farm.

  200. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    384

    [quote name=Corms]That’s what happens when you recruit your new manager from Lamb’s Farm.[/quote]This is the worst thing to every happen on this blog.

    Also: HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA /tears

  201. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    385

    Quade: “Reed, you’re up.”

    Jaramillo: “We might be better off with Fukudome. He had some good swings in the cage before the game.”

    Quade: “Reed’s a gamer. Let’s see what happens.”

    Jaramillo: /cerebellum fuses

  202. 386

    [quote name=GBTS]Mike Quade in the post-game on why Reed Johnson pinch hit in the ninth: “Reed’s a gamer.”[/quote]
    So he decided to let 2 strikes go by before flailing at a non-strike. What a gamer indeed.

  203. 388

    [quote name=AndCounting]I felt the same way. You hear Pat all excited and realize something really big is missing.

    All in all though, I loved this game. Starlin Castro is 21. And the team that surrounds him is not good, but still watchable, I think. When the games are competitive, they’re fun to watch. Yeah, I wish they would have won, but this was enjoyable.[/quote]
    Agreed, AC. I couldn’t watch last year’s team after Castro’s first month, but there are more reasons to watch this year at least.

  204. 389

    Why would you bat your opening day starter who has the platoon advantage against this pitcher in place of the fifth outfielder?

  205. 390

    Cubs got the loss, but I took away a good feeling from this game. Castro had a great day with two triples and one mistake. Garza pitched well despite being smothered by the luck dragon. Colvin made a great defensive play. Soriano homered.

  206. 391

    [quote name=Berselius]Cubs got the loss, but I took away a good feeling from this game. Castro had a great day with two triples and one mistake. Garza pitched well despite being smothered by the luck dragon. Colvin made a great defensive play. Soriano homered. Reed Johnson’s a gamer.[/quote]
    /Fireman Bill’ed

  207. 392

    MQ:Thank you for calling the suicide prevention hot line. My name is Mike.

    Caller:Yeah, I don’t think I can go on.

    MQ:Where are you right now?

    Caller:On the window ledge outside my office.

    MQ:What are you doing out there?

    Caller:I think I’m going to jump.

    MQ:Good idea, let’s see what happens.

  208. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    393

    [quote name=Corms]MQ:Thank you for calling the suicide prevention hot line. My name is Mike.

    Caller:Yeah, I don’t think I can go on.

    MQ:Where are you right now?

    Caller:On the window ledge outside my office.

    MQ:What are you doing out there?

    Caller:I think I’m going to jump.

    MQ: You sound like a gamer, let’s see what happens.[/quote]
    Lamb’s Farm’d

  209. 394

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]Lamb’s Farm’d[/quote]Meme’d

    (is a second use sufficient for meme status?)

  210. 395

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]Lamb’s Farm’d[/quote]
    The only way this guy can’t fuck up is to Quade proof the bench and bullpen. And not even then.

  211. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    396

    [quote name=cdw]The only way this guy can’t fuck up is to Quade proof the bench and bullpen. And not even then.[/quote]We’ll see what Hendry does. He took Dusty’s crusty vets away. Maybe he’ll do the same to Baldy McGrindy.

  212. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    398

    [quote name=Eddie]Any way you slice it, losing a home series to Pittsburgh is a failure. This is going to be a long season.[/quote]

  213. 399

    [quote name=Eddie]Any way you slice it, losing a home series to Pittsburgh is a failure. This is going to be a long season.[/quote]Especially when the games went pretty much as we expected. This offense isn’t any good. They’re not going to score a lot of runs. They scored 12 in the 3 games. I expect they’ll be slightly better than that, but not much. They’ll be below average. There is just way too much about this team that makes it unlikely to contend.

  214. 400

    (dying laughing) @ Omar. I watched that episode two night ago. I rewinded it three or four times to hear those two words. That was just perfect.

  215. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    401

    [quote name=mb21](dying laughing) @ Omar. I watched that episode two night ago. I rewinded it three or four times to hear those two words. That was just perfect.[/quote]”I got the shotgun, you got the briefcase” has to be one of the greatest lines in television history.

  216. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    402

    [quote name=mb21]Especially when the games went pretty much as we expected. This offense isn’t any good. They’re not going to score a lot of runs. They scored 12 in the 3 games. I expect they’ll be slightly better than that, but not much. They’ll be below average. There is just way too much about this team that makes it unlikely to contend.[/quote]Yeah, this offense is going to sputter and it won’t be helped by Quade’s quaint managerial practices.

  217. 403

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]”I got the shotgun, you got the briefcase” has to be one of the greatest lines in television history.[/quote]I think my favorite part of The Wire was when Bunk and Jimmy were in that murdered girl’s apartment (case was 6 months old). They were working the scene. Every word for about 5 minutes was Fuck. I think it ended in Fuckety Fuckety Fuck Fuck Fuck. I was on the floor the first time during that scene.

  218. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    404

    [quote name=mb21]I think my favorite part of The Wire was when Bunk and Jimmy were in that murdered girl’s apartment (case was 6 months old). They were working the scene. Every word for about 5 minutes was Fuck. I think it ended in Fuckety Fuckety Fuck Fuck Fuck. I was on the floor the first time during that scene.[/quote]Yeah, that’s a classic.

  219. 406

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]”I got the shotgun, you got the briefcase” has to be one of the greatest lines in television history.[/quote]
    Outstanding take down of a immoral lawyer.

  220. 407

    I can’t remember if this was done or not and if it was maybe that’s why I’ve been thinking about it, but I’ve been wanting to do a post for awhile where I use the characters from The Wire and show who they are on the Cubs.

  221. Mercurial Outfielder · Edit
    408

    [quote name=mb21]I can’t remember if this was done or not and if it was maybe that’s why I’ve been thinking about it, but I’ve been wanting to do a post for awhile where I use the characters from The Wire and show who they are on the Cubs.[/quote]Fuck yes. I’d be down for that.

  222. 410

    [quote name=Mercurial Outfielder]Fuck yes. I’d be down for that.[/quote]The problem is that there are so many characters in The Wire.

  223. 411

    [quote name=cdw]Hoping Starlin is Marlo. Santo reminds me of Bubbles.[/quote]I haven’t thought much about who’s who other than Ricketts. He seems like Tommy Carcetti to me. Especially in season 5 when he had all the financial difficulties. The Cubs financial situation doesn’t seem a whole lot better to me. Carcetti promised all kinds of shit and then realized there was no money so he went back on his word. That also reminds me of Ricketts.

  224. 417

    My hitting in the fantasy league is a fucking joke. Last in every category except RBIs, where I’m second to last. I make Ed Wade look like a genius.

  225. 418

    [quote name=PFD]My hitting in the fantasy league is a fucking joke. Last in every category except RBIs, where I’m second to last. I make Ed Wade look like a genius.[/quote]
    You need to sign half a hundred replacement level relievers to be in Ed Wade’s class.

  226. 421

    [quote name=PFD]My hitting in the fantasy league is a fucking joke. Last in every category except RBIs, where I’m second to last. I make Ed Wade look like a genius.[/quote]Yeah, your chances of being awarded dinner are slim.

  227. 424

    As I wrote yesterday in this space, we have brought this on ourselves with our insatiable slobbering over multimillionaires who live in gated communities and don’t care about us for one second except to make sure that we keep buying the incredibly expensive tickets to see them play and purchase the cable and satellite subscriptions to watch them play when we’re not seeing them in person and buying the replica jerseys and T-shirts and caps so they can continue to be completely detached from the lives that we the fans who are supposed to fawn over them live.

    It’s time for another round of Guess How Many Sentences This Is.

  228. 425

    [quote name=GBTS]Yeah, your chances of being awarded dinner are slim.[/quote]
    (dying laughing) The harsh realities of the ACB Fantasy League.

  229. 427

    [quote name=GBTS]It’s time for another round of Guess How Many Sentences This Is.[/quote]So close to the 100 word sentence. I’m disappointed Al couldn’t come up with 2 more words.

  230. 428

    [quote name=mb21]So close to the 100 word sentence. I’m disappointed Al couldn’t come up with 2 more words.[/quote]I’m way more impressed that there’s one comma. A 98:1 comma to word ratio. That’s unheard of for Alvin. It’s like a four minute mile.

  231. 430

    [quote name=GW]Did someone rank the wire seasons in a post before SK ended ranking history?[/quote]No, ranking history ended too abruptly for that. What a shame.

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