OT - Ryan Raburn

Submitted by Blazefire on August 21st, 2009 at 10:53 PM

Dude can swing the bat. Two home runs in his first two at bats! We need to get him batting behind some guys with a really good OBP.



August 21st, 2009 at 11:07 PM ^

Raburn bats third, and Polanco is batting first tonight. Polanco is pretty much the best on base guy we have.

Still, it is nice to see some runs, especially with EJ pitching, and I'll take them however we can get them.

Also, the White Sox lost tonight...


August 21st, 2009 at 11:33 PM ^

At a OBP of .318 Polly is almost the worst on base guy on the team. As much as Curtis has struggled he is still third on the team as far as getting on base and has four times as many steals as anyone else. If you want someone on base in front of Raburn he'd have to bat behind Cabrera.


August 22nd, 2009 at 12:53 AM ^

While Raburn has been good recently, he hasn't been starting everyday. Leyland has started him primarily in situations where his matchup with the starting pitcher is favorable. Furthermore, his stats are currently elevated because he is on a hot streak (8-17, 3 HR), and with only 187 at bats, this changes his average and slugging percentage significantly.


August 22nd, 2009 at 9:03 AM ^

Imagining that you're a GM of a baseball team, which stat do you think you'd value more? Is it batting average, or on-base percentage? I know the argument for the on-base plus slugging statistic, but not every guy who helps your club has to have a high slugging percentage. Polanco is a perfect example of a guy who in general (i.e. forgiving him for a lower BA this season) hits for high average but rarely walks. Thus his OBP is lower than guys like Inge and Clete Thomas despite the fact many of us would argue that his value as a hitter is higher.

I'm not a great baseball fan, so if there is something more obvious than just comparing these two numbers I'd love to hear it. The Billy Beane model may not be as popular anymore, but the cleanness of baseball statistics makes it quite fun to play with those numbers.


August 22nd, 2009 at 3:59 PM ^

Well, I think the point is that "the many of [you] who would argue hat his value as a hitter is higher" are wrong. First - OBP is HEAVILY dependent on batting average. It's not as if the two stats are mutually exclusive - players with higher batting averages are more likely to have higher OBP's. It's also true that a hit, in many situations, is more valuable than a walk (like, with men on base). Most people would agree that a guy that hits .350 avg/.370 OBP is more valuable than a guy who hits .270 avg/.370 OBP.


August 22nd, 2009 at 6:04 PM ^

By idiots, maybe. But's like the people in Cincy who wanted Adam Dunn sent to Siberia because he had a low average. He still lead the team in SLG and OBP, people.

The argument is not that AVG. isn't valuable, but that it's not a terribly repeatable skill - bating averages swing 30 to 60 points fairly regularly. Power and patience correlate strongly from year to year.


August 22nd, 2009 at 6:18 PM ^

Harwell is one of two broadcaster I can think of that actually understood the statistical side of baseball (the other being Len Kasper of the Brewers, now the Cubs). Harwell is more impressive, as Kasper, in his 30's, gets to lean on the work of Bill James, Baseball Prospectus, etc. - Harwell just instinctively understood.