Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Just When I think he Gets It

Dusty decides to not pinch hit for Cueto after he gets to 100 pitches, has looked like crap and the reds need some offense. All that makes sense since we want our young arms throwing 120 pitches. At least he is showing some faith in our beat up bullpen. That's a good long term strategy. Pleanty more to say about this. Reds did win, but see below for pleanty of reasons why Dusty should not be the coach of the Reds (ignoring the fact he replaces Dunn with Corey Patterson in double switch, then changes pitchers the next inning basically saying in a tie game I would rather have Corey "swing at the first pitch and really suck at baseball with worst VORP on the team" Patterson for the long haul then Adam "Best VORP on the team, hits many homers which could be very valuable in extra innings" Dunn. Moving on.

Even worse is after his decision to pinch hit last night and use Josh Fogg (who attempts to bunt 3 times and the third one goes foul for an out, so good decision). Well lets see how Dusty explains the bunt:

"The thing about it is, you've got a chance of getting a bunt down 7 or 8 out of 10 times, you've got a chance at a hit 3 out of 10 times and you've got a chance of hitting into a double play 4 or 5 times out of 10 if it's a sinker, slider type of guy. It's all about the odds and who's pitching against you, it's about the scoreboard, the inning, everything. We've been stressing (bunting) since I've been there. They bunt every day. They bunt one to the left side and one to the right side and if they don't get one down, they do it again and they keep doing it until they get one down."

Ok so first of all by the above logic where you have a 75% chance of getting the runner over and 25% of the time you don't get the runner over and he gets out. Either way you get 1 out. His defense of this is that if you swing away you have a 30% chance of getting a hit (and with many people 40% chance of a hit or walk which counts the same, but that is an argument for another day). That would move the runner over and not cost an out which is good. The problem is that you have a 45% chance of getting a double play and two outs (which is really bad and not even close to being supported by any statistical evidence I can find, here is the only thing I found which states since 1978 11% of no out runner on first plays have led to a double play which is a little below the ol Dusters argument http://www.diamond-mind.com/newsletter/en031022.htm). I'm going to assume that the other 25% would just be 1 out. Remember we are not trying to prove his statistics wrong (which they are), but rather use his statistics to see what the logical conclusion. Frankly at this point we aren't asking you to be right Dusty, just be consistent.

So in Dusty World you have 2 choices, take a bunt, move the runner over and get an out 75% of the time with the next guy having a 30% chance of hitting him home assuming he isn't clutch and hits much better with RISP. This leaves you a 22.5% chance of getting a run with one out.

Your other choice is to let the guy hit away and have a 30% chance of a hit followed by another 30% of a hit which scores a run without any outs (a 10% chance of run without any outs or a 5% chance of a run with 1 out (you have to remember that you will only get 1 out 25% of the time b/c of the 50/50 shot at a double play) which gives you a 15% chance of a run assuming that the only thing you can do is single, which is very stupid. All this is irrelevant because a whopping 45% of the time you ground into a double play which offsets any of the above chances of a run.

By this logic you should ALWAYS bunt with a runner on first. Assuming the above facts are correct (which they aren't) there is no reason to ever swing the bat with a runner on first given your are going to get 2 outs half the time 1 out a quarter of the time and 1 run the other quarter. I do love his attempt at statistics, but the only thing worse than Dusty going with his gut is his attempt to use "statistical" analysis. There no reason this man should be in the big leagues, minor leagues or little leagues.

This also ignores the fact he is taking valuable time away from working on hitting the ball out of the ball park or other places that don't ensure you give up one of your 27 precious outs to work on bunting. That is a story for another time. I can't believe I'm sitting in my Mom's basement, and he is running the oldest professional baseball team of all time.


Grady said...

As an engineer, I like hearing numbers. Just wish that the Dust Bowl (my current nickname for him) could understand them. One thing I dont understand about the Dust Bowl is his idea of arguing with an umpire. He doesn't look them in the eyes. He looks like a beaten child when he talks to them. It doesn't make sense. Anyways, I was at the game and I love watching walk-off hits. It was a great ending to a relatively slow game. GO REDS!!

R.F. Foss said...

Disagree with your thought process on young pitchers throwing 120 pitches. What, is 120 some magic number? I didn't see the game in question, but a lot of factors go into making a pitcher fatigued; pitch count is only one. Bravo to Baker for leaving this guy in the game and gutting it out. Fundamentally, how is a pitcher ever going to build up stamina if he's never stretched out a bit? I blame the minors... Stop blaming pitch counts for our whiney, broken pitchers and instead take a look at their training...