Thursday, November 10, 2005

I Give Up

Seriously, I am no longer paying any attention to baseball awards given to individual players...

The reason? Gold Glove winner Derek Jeter? You have to be kidding me. O-Cab had way better numbers...

All of these rewards are jokes...The only one they always seem to get right is ROY (which is discussed in another thread)...

Gold Glove should be a no brainer. Look at the numbers and give the guy with the best numbers the reward...


  1. Just curious, which number should they use?

  2. The only reason I ask is because according to baseball prospectus, O-Cab and Jeter were equal, with a defensive rating of 105. Jeter was helped by his higher number of DPs (which I agree is a function of pitchers as well).

    Statistically, the best SS in the AL was Johnny Peralta, followed by Uribe. Neither of those guys gets much consideration because of high number of errors and playing in, well anywhere other than NY or Boston.

    I agree Jeter was not the best pick, but at least it was his best defensive year - the first one in his career that he was not below average.

  3. Fielding percentage is one. Then you take in to account the number of chances. (Obviously, a guy with a 100% but only 10 chances does not win...).

    DPs don't count (except for fielding % and chances).

    Range counts as well.

    And some common sense. I think most people that watch baseball know that Jeter is not the best fielding SS in the AL...

    Of course, by these standards Darren Lewis would have won a bunch of Gold Gloves, and fans of baseball would be like, "Darren Lewis! Who's that?"

    I know that awards go to (mostly) favorites of the fans. I get that...I just don't like it. Sort of like when "Forrest Gump" beat out "Pulp Fiction" for Best Film...Ridiculous....

  4. That's nothing. "Driving Ms. Daisy" over "Do the Right Thing".

    Anyhoo, if we're going to complain about GG's, we'll have to include a GYS favorite: Jason Varitek. There's no catcher I'd rather have on my team (if you know what I mean), but it's not for his defense. Yes, he can block the plate better than anyone, but (1) he can't throw runners out, (2) he doesn't catch Wakefield, the hardest pitcher to catch and this year's staff ace, and (3) this last season seriously called into question his famed ability to "make pitchers better than they are" (which I honestly believed he had). He wasn't the best defensive catcher in the AL.

  5. That is kind of the fun about awards - the ensuing discussions about them.

    I think Fielding % is the absolute worst measure of players defense. The Darren Lewis example is a good one.

    For a middle IF, DPs are a huge measure of efficiency. How quickly a guy gets the play started. Believe it or not, it is one of BP's most highly rated attributes for 2B and SS. And, yes they, attribute to situations (pitchers GB/FB ratio, runners on, etc). Like most defensive metrics, they are not perfect but they do a good job. The only reason I brought up the DPs was that Jeter's "numbers" this year were improved (it was his only above league average year in his career) because of an outlier in his DP this year (actually last year he showed an increase over his career #'s as well).

    Another example of % not being relevant was Cal Ripken.

    I think Gold Gloves are kind of like Lifetime Achivement Awards.

    One other interesting thought, sort of relative to Varitek. I haven't really thought about other than in the last two minutes, but should/does a catcher's ability "to make pitchers better/call a good game" play into the Gold Glove discussions? When Pudge was winning his gold gloves, he received some criticism because he would always call for fastballs when speedy runners were on first. So what really is a great defensive catcher?

  6. I was thinking the same thing as I was writing that. And despite what I wrote, I think calling a game should not be considered. That's just what catchers do. Just like pitchers aren't judged for their pitching -- it's their defense. As in, what they do after the batter's had a chance at the ball.

  7. Ah, but that raises another discussion point - who was the last bad pitcher to win a Gold Glove - granted once a guy starts winning he can have a down year and still win (Maddux this year, Jim Kaat at the end of his streak). But I do think pitchers get extra credit for being good pitchers. Now sure two things come into play - by fielding very well (the best in the league) they should help their overall numbers and the best pitchers should rack up more innings.

    Scan the list of pitchers that have won the award and there is not a bad pitcher - Mussina, Langston, Boddicker, Guidry, Palmer, Kaat, Maddux, Darling, Orel, Fernando, Niekro, Carlton, Gibson. Not many Mark Hendricksons and Mike Maroths on that list.

  8. Darren Lewis did win the Gold Glove in 1994. and even though he had gone something like 300 games w/out an error, he was rated absolutely neutral that year. The year before he had one of the best ratings in the last 20 years, but did not win.

    And one closing nugget - for Yankee fans getting all excited about maybe getting Torii Hunter as their CF - he has been average or below average the last four years (and about the same as Bernie) and will now be on the wrong side of 30.