Thursday, February 26, 2009

Bear Down

How does a baseball team's ability to keep runner's from scoring affect their win total? Today I am going to look at the relationship between Team Wins and Left on Base %.

Team Wins
Number of total wins for a team

Left On Base %
The percentage of hitters that reach base but do not score.

I charted out 2008's values to see what kind of trendline it would generate. The Correlation is only about 60%, but if you remove the 1 obvious anomaly, it jumps to 70%.

It is quite obvious that holding runners or bearing down is a key component to winning. What determines how far a team is above or below the line? Hitting

The anomaly? That would be the 79 win Texas Rangers. The equation Wins = 435.37(LOB %) - 231.28 describes the slope of the line without the Rangers. That would peg the Rangers at 55 Wins last year based upon pitching.

The teams that were farthest from the line were (Actual to Equation):
Can't Hit
Seattle Mariners (61 to 77)
Washington Nationals (59 to 74)
San Diego Padres (63 to 77)

Hit a lot
Texas Rangers (79 to 55)
California Anaheim LA Angels (100 to 87)

Friday, February 20, 2009

Don't Hold Back

In preparation for the upcoming baseball season and because I am finishing up a statistics course, I am going to do a series on interesting stats from the great game. These are not necessarily original statistics, but the ones that I find interesting. All stats come from last season.

Fast Ball Percentage
To what degree do pitchers feel comfortable throwing the heat? Are they pretty sure that you will chase junk in the dirt? I think answers to these questions should help a player focus on areas to improve during the offseason. The average player sees about 60% fastballs when they come to the plate.

Let's start with players around the league who should swing early and assume fastball. Pitchers think that they cannot get around on a good fastball.
PlayerTeamFastball %
Juan PierreDodgers70.1 %
Chone FigginsAngels69.1 %
Placido PolancoTigers68.1 %
Johnny DamonYankees67.8 %
Matt HollidayRockies67.0 %

Two Rangers this year need to take notice:
PlayerTeamFastball %
Taylor TeagardenRangers70.8 %
Frank CatalanottoRangers66.6 %

As far as players who can't hold back on any pitch, the following are in the cellar. Pitchers think that they can get them to whiff on anything with movement. If this group does not stay planted on their back feet, they are toast.
PlayerTeamFastball %
Alexei RamirezWhite Sox47.0 %
Hunter PenceAstros49.8 %
Dan UgglaMarlins50.2 %
Aubrey HuffOrioles51.0 %
Ryan HowardPhillies51.2 %
Geovany SotoCubs51.2 %

The offending Rangers are:
PlayerTeamFastball %
Hank BlalockRangers53.2 %
Josh HamiltonRangers53.4 %
Chris DavisRangers55.3 %
Nelson CruzRangers55.4 %

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

That's So 2003

Today the media got all hyped up and was ready to lynch someone who dared offend them. They posted their 'questions they would have asked' and demanded answers. And today, Alex Rodriguez gave a bunch of answers. Answers that in my opinion are plausible and a demeanor that seemed believable. He claims that he stopped taking something 6 years ago.

If this press conference was held 6 years ago, 500% more fans would care and 5000% more average joes would care. The fact of the matter is that I, like most people, am over it. I have other things to worry about right now (job, savings, a house, grad school, work...). I may have given an impassioned response in the past, but not these days. I think a lot of people have reached this point. Let's move on.

Back when ARod quit using banned substances...

50 Cent and Evanescence had successful debut albums with Outkast's Hey Ya being the most downloaded song of the year.

The Lord of the Rings movies finally closed, Pirates of the Caribbean came out, 2 Matrix films hit the theaters, and Finding Nemo defined a 12 step program for sharks.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers won the Super Bowl over the Oakland Raiders... yes the very same joke of a team that we have today.

Arnold Schwarzenegger was elected Governor of California.

I was in college that year.

I wasn't even engaged to be married until the end of that year...

Caring about juiced players is sooo 2003.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

The Doldrums

We went to check on the house today. Since we are done making decisions, I figure that they should be about done by now too. WRONG! Permits apparently take some time to go through. So until then, nothing happens on the lot.

This reminds of the baseball talk this time of year. Everyone is fishing for a story but is just scrambling for who knows what. Today I hear that "that the Rangers are 'considering' signing Andruw Jones." No one in their right mind would do such a thing. Further proof that things are puttering along waiting to be kicked into gear.

This is a view from about where Kimberlee's office will be:

Thank goodness that Spring Training is just around the corner.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Blog Stimulus

So what has kept me so busy the last couple of months?
Glad you asked, and it happens to be a new house!

We started on January 11th by securing our lot.

We then selected floor plan and options:

So 2 story brick with a front porch.

Bay windows on the Master Bedroom. 12x12 covered patio in the back.

Kimberlee's office in the front.

My office on the middle left. Guest Bedroom on the middle right.

TV / Game room on the bottom left.

Finally, we finished the interior design last night. Below are the samples that we chose. The first has our maple cabinets, granite kitchen countertop, and entry / kitchen / dining tile.

Next we have our bathroom cabinetry, linoleum, master bath granite (bottom left), other bathroom marble (bottom center), carpet, and main paint color for the house.