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Brittany Ghiroli on frustration in O's locker room

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OR we understand the power of confirmation bias and hindsight legend building. If this team were winning, there would be no stories about bad chemistry. Hell, maybe the bad chemistry wouldn't even exist. Great teams don't get taken down by bad chemistry. In this case, it's a tool being used to explain a mediocre team not living up to unreasonable expectations.

Say all you want about sabermetrics, but the stats told us exactly what this team was, so I fail to see what chemistry has to do with anything.

I think we are saying the same thing, or at least what happened this off season led us to the same conclusion-that this team may very well suffer a downturn. You say because of stats that say the players have not performed this year, and I say that those stats, that the players still on the team knew would probably not be good enough to win long term with due to the losses of key players, have led to a decrease in confidence and a down turn.

I would say it's a combo of both our theories. A what came first, the chicken or the egg scenario.

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At the risk of wading into a debate that I've got neither the time nor the energy for, I would offer that just because we can't measure the importance of human factors such as chemistry and confidence, doesn't mean they don't exist. I think the truth is somewhere between the "rely heavy on the numbers" crowd and the "Saber is bull" crowd.

I don't think any reasonable person would ascribe zero impact to emotional factors in sports. They are simply not worth considering from a team building standpoint because there is no way to know what affect they are having and why. Things like "chemistry" and "choking" are generally retroactively assigned to random events to explain them. Winning teams have good chemistry while losing teams don't. Players are chokers in the playoffs until they aren't (couldn't possibly be small sample size or randomness).

When we come up with a way to pre measure or predict these sort of things, then they will be worth investigating. Until then, they will remain the tool of the hindsight prone.

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We had chemistry with the club as constructed through July 2. Do these guys look like they are hanging their head pining for veteran leadership?

041115_bal_schoop_dance_med_ooksveg2.gif

Then Ubaldo lost his groove, Miguel got hurt, JJ collapsed, Wieters never got going, Tillman and Gausman were meh, etc. All the chemistry in the world does not overcome that. Especially without a shred of evidence that chemistry is at all an issue.

No way man, Cruz smiled and had fun. No one else does that.

He left, and the entire world collapsed behind him. The starting pitchers all saw him go and decided they didn't even want to play anymore or they played their way out of the organization, obviously on purpose. J.J. Hardy saw him leave and thought the rest of this team isn't going to hit so he didn't have to either. Matt Wieters' elbow decided to take its time healing because there was no point wasting fully healthy throws for this lost cause. Every single one of the corner outfielders decided they were no Nelson Cruz, so why even bother coming to the park? Chris Davis is only trying because he wants to earn a fat paycheck somewhere else. I have no idea what's going on with Manny, Schoop, Joseph, and Jones. It's almost like they try hard anyway even though we know they just want to roll over and die with everyone else.

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Well...looks like we have a bunch of soft players on this team. I would like to ask Manny if he will ever be on another winning team if he is not playing with Nick and Cruz again.

Why isn't Nelson's infectious smile in the locker room affecting the Mariners in a positive way?

If I were Davis, Manny and Jones I would take it as an insult that they don't have the talent to win without the help of Nick.

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I don't think any reasonable person would ascribe zero impact to emotional factors in sports. They are simply not worth considering from a team building standpoint because there is no way to know what affect they are having and why. Things like "chemistry" and "choking" are generally retroactively assigned to random events to explain them. Winning teams have good chemistry while losing teams don't. Players are chokers in the playoffs until they aren't (couldn't possibly be small sample size or randomness).

When we come up with a way to pre measure or predict these sort of things, then they will be worth investigating. Until then, they will remain the tool of the hindsight prone.

These are fair points, and I'll admit these terms are probably used as a crutch for analysis far too often. I would argue, though, that just because we can't ascribe a statistical figure to chemistry, we shouldn't just throw our hands up and say it's impossible to predict. I think it was a fair hypothesis (which could be bolstered by rumblings we heard from various parts of the team) that failing to resign your well-liked leading power hitter and the solid, steady longest tenured Oriole and team leader in right field would have a negative impact on team chemistry; do you disagree? That's not to say there were no ways to mitigate that (though, certainly, that which we tried didn't work), and certainly there were tons of other factors that went into that decision (money, health, age decline, etc) that go well beyond chemistry. However, I would argue that we can try to be a bit predictive without necessarily having data, so we shouldn't totally discount it in trying to build a team.

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These are fair points, and I'll admit these terms are probably used as a crutch for analysis far too often. I would argue, though, that just because we can't ascribe a statistical figure to chemistry, we shouldn't just throw our hands up and say it's impossible to predict. I think it was a fair hypothesis (which could be bolstered by rumblings we heard from various parts of the team) that failing to resign your well-liked leading power hitter and the solid, steady longest tenured Oriole and team leader in right field would have a negative impact on team chemistry; do you disagree? That's not to say there were no ways to mitigate that (though, certainly, that which we tried didn't work), and certainly there were tons of other factors that went into that decision (money, health, age decline, etc) that go well beyond chemistry. However, I would argue that we can try to be a bit predictive without necessarily having data, so we shouldn't totally discount it in trying to build a team.

But on the other side of this....I'm sure within a group of 25 young men, some probably didn't particularly like Markakis, some may not have liked or cared much about Cruz. Maybe Braach is pitching better because finally old stone face Markakis is gone! I don't believe all 25 guys like or feel exactly the same way about all the other guys in locker room.

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So tired of hearing about Cruz & Markakis

Do either of them pitch?

Our starting pitching is horrible

and how is their magic working for their new teams

Seattle is 61-71

Atlanta is 54-77

they have been a big waste of money, and they are not worth the contracts they signed

Seattle 2015 61-71

Seattle 2014 72-60

Those 39 HRs and 82 HRs got them what exactly? They have a 22 game reversal in the wrong direction from 2014. Atlanta has been selling off players.

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Seattle 2015 61-71

Seattle 2014 72-60

Those 39 HRs and 82 HRs got them what exactly? They have a 22 game reversal in the wrong direction from 2014.

When Felix Hernandez got word they had signed Cruz, he didn't prepare at all for the season knowing that he'd carry the entire team on his back all the way to the World Series. Robinson Cano and Kyle Seager were also relieved to know that they could also take the season off since their contributions were also no longer needed.

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These are fair points, and I'll admit these terms are probably used as a crutch for analysis far too often. I would argue, though, that just because we can't ascribe a statistical figure to chemistry, we shouldn't just throw our hands up and say it's impossible to predict. I think it was a fair hypothesis (which could be bolstered by rumblings we heard from various parts of the team) that failing to resign your well-liked leading power hitter and the solid, steady longest tenured Oriole and team leader in right field would have a negative impact on team chemistry; do you disagree?

I think our decline has been 99% based on the difference between the talent of those players we lost and their replacements as well as the predicted regression of players who had played above their talent level.

And yes, I DO think chemistry is completely impossible to predict. You know how I know? No one has used it to predict anything with any success over any decent period of time. Next preseason, take the individual and team forecasts that come out from Fangraphs and apply chemistry modifiers to them and see who ends up with better results at the end of the year.

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It never ceases to amaze me how far some will go to discount chemistry and leadership just because you can't measure it with an algebra formula.

It's really amazing.

Everyone in local media, most Orioles fans in the Baltimore region, national sports reporters and most folks with eyes can see that the loss of Cruz and Markakis had an impact. Those of us who followed the DD saga this offseason saw how upset Adam and a few other players were.

Brittany pretty much FLAT OUT SAYS that the team chemistry suffered because of the departure of popular players.

Case in point:

Steve asks about if the team’s frustration on the loss of players like Markakis and Cruz and not replacing them on the roster has led to their poor performance this season. Brittany says that she thinks it’s been like that since spring training, “What people don’t realize is they let go of Delmon Young who was very popular in there and was a professional hitter. Some of the guys were talking to me about this the other day, you look in that clubhouse and tell me who is a professional, veteran hitter in that clubhouse? Veteran in my book is about 5 full seasons in the major leagues. Who do they have, outside of Adam Jones? Nobody. There’s just nobody with any kind of major league experience and veteran presence, like I said to keep everybody from panicking. They don’t realize how many guys Nick Markakis kept in line. Not because he was a vocal guy, but because of the way he was. Same thing for Nelson Cruz. You can’t try to replace those guys with 2 or 3 other guys, Travis Snider’s or David Lough’s and it’s going to be okay, because if you add these 2 guys together, their production lines, equals what you think Nelson Cruz or Nick Markakis is going to do. It just doesn’t work that way and the Orioles are finding out first hand.”

And STILL, members of the flapjack regime will disregard this... it's so... sad.

The thing is that known quality players will put up the favorable stats that the number crunchers adore. When you eliminate the known players who have a track record of production and replace them with AAAA guys who've played above their abilities, that's when the theoretical calculus kicks in to justify the not-signing of quality talent.

That sucks hard.

You guys win. I have no idea what world you live in.

MSK

Edited by MemorialStadKid

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We had chemistry with the club as constructed through July 2. Do these guys look like they are hanging their head pining for veteran leadership?

041115_bal_schoop_dance_med_ooksveg2.gif

Then Ubaldo lost his groove, Miguel got hurt, JJ collapsed, Wieters never got going, Tillman and Gausman were meh, etc. All the chemistry in the world does not overcome that. Especially without a shred of evidence that chemistry is at all an issue.

That game was on April 11th.They won 7-1. They were in 2nd place with a 3-2 record and 1 game behind Boston. A lot can change in 4 months. That was then. This is now and now isn?t so pretty.

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"Chemistry" can be used to fit whatever narrative you want, which is why it's a stupid and lazy argument.

Also still unacknowledged by Team Chemistry is that Cruz and Markakis have chemically bonded their teams to terrible records, for all the good their cheeky smiles and warm laughter have done.

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Many people argue that if a variable can't be measured objectively then there is no reason to discuss it's impact. What some of these people forget however, is that there is a perfectly acceptable subjective method, used by many statisticians, that has been very useful in determining a given variables impact,the use of anecdotal information. I.e. Surveys, questionnaires, interviews,etc. This information has been available throughout the season. Highly respected members of the team have stated on many different occasions and in many interviews that the loss of Markakis and Cruz has had a serious effect on the team's performance. To ignor this feedback would be irresponsible, if one were charged with trying to identify reasons for the team's poor performance this year. It needs to be included with the others data when the powers that be evaluate this year's performance. It should also be considered here as well.

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