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Chris Davis, 2020

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17 hours ago, Hallas said:

I mean, I don't blame them. It was many years before WAR or any of it's predecessors existed, much less became mainstream. You make decisions based on the available data, of which there was a lot less back then.

When you literally have no ground truth data you could convince yourself that a catcher with no homers who missed a month's worth of games but was perceived as a great "field general" was worth more than an RFer who hit .393 with 75 extra base hits.  It sounds ludicrous today, but they were voting on how a player looked and was perceived and they put a lot of emphasis on how the team did.

Also voting systems weren't (and still aren't) well conceived or exectued.  Ruth had years where he OPS'd 1.252 and didn't get any MVP votes because there was a rule (either written or understood, not sure) that you couldn't win the award twice.

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20 hours ago, Moose Milligan said:

Probably not.  I mean, they'd have to be starved for a mid 30's 1st baseman who had one scalding hot year after having several disasterous ones.  A first baseman who's defense is no longer that great.  

Call me crazy, but I don't see teams clamoring for that type of profile.  We'd be eating a lot of that salary, but I also don't think we'd be getting anything in return.

I would think the most likely scenario (still incredibly unlikely) would be a good 2020, followed up by a good 2021 first half. A team starved for power or who suffered an injury could be interested if he's put up a run. I don't think anyone would be interested with one just good year following two terrible (and we can assume more options available during the offseason).

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1 minute ago, BohKnowsBmore said:

I would think the most likely scenario (still incredibly unlikely) would be a good 2020, followed up by a good 2021 first half. A team starved for power or who suffered an injury could be interested if he's put up a run. I don't think anyone would be interested with one just good year following two terrible (and we can assume more options available during the offseason).

I'd agree with that scenario, kinda.  I mean, I don't think there are too many teams starved for power these days, at least not with the jackrabbit ball they've been using.  Of course not every team can be at the top of the pack when it comes to slugging but I'd imagine that the top slugging teams are higher up in the standings than the ones that aren't...usually.  In other words, I don't see a team that's winning games and in a pennant race hurting for scoring runs.  It's possible, but not likely.

That said, Davis could make sense in this scenario because he probably wouldn't cost any top prospects and we'd still be eating a lot of the salary.  A team trying to sell off a younger player with more years of team control would probably cost more prospect capital than Davis.  He could be a viable option but I'm not counting it.

That said...hey, whatever.  We'd all love to see Davis get back to a 40+ homer guy.  It was fun when he was hitting bombs.  If he can somehow iron himself out and get back to that, that'd be quite a story.  And if we still can't trade him, at least he'd be finishing his contract on a high note and we'll have had some fun moments watching him.

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12 minutes ago, Moose Milligan said:

 

That said...hey, whatever.  We'd all love to see Davis get back to a 40+ homer guy.  It was fun when he was hitting bombs.  If he can somehow iron himself out and get back to that, that'd be quite a story.  And if we still can't trade him, at least he'd be finishing his contract on a high note and we'll have had some fun moments watching him.

Is it really worth watching him hit 40+ only to strike out 200+ times?   With many of those times with runners on?

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3 minutes ago, MongoBoy said:

Is it really worth watching him hit 40+ only to strike out 200+ times?   With many of those times with runners on?

I'd rather watch that than what we've been watching for the previous 2 or 3 years.  

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5 hours ago, DrungoHazewood said:

Prior to, say, 1980 even GMs, writers, etc had some pretty out-there ideas about valuing players.  In the early days of MVP voting like the 1920s you'd often have player-managers get a lot of votes for leading their teams while playing.  Catcher often got a similar bump. 

But one of the more egregious MVP awards was Roger Peckinpaugh in 1925.  The Senators won the pennant, he was their 34-year-old shortstop in his last year as a regular.  He hit .294/.367/.379 with 16 doubles and four homers, and by modern retroactive figuring was a +2 shortstop (although was +21 the prior year).  He won the award.  Also playing in the AL that year was HOFer Al Simmons (.387/.419/.599 with 129 RBI), HOFer Harry Heilmann (.393/.457/.569, 134 RBI), HOFer San Coveleski (20-5, 2.84), and the Browns' Harry Rice (.359/.450/.568).  Mickey Cochrane was a catcher who hit .331/.397/.448.  The Indians' Joe Sewell was another shortstop who hit .336/.402/.424 and struck out four times all year.  Goose Goslin was Peckinpaugh's teammate and had a .931 OPS, 34 doubles, 20 triples, 27 steals.  But none of those guys polled as well as the 34-year-old Senators shortstop who had a 2.6-win season but "led" them to the pennant.

Also look at Johnny Bassler.  I've mentioned him before, he was a catcher with a short career, but in the 1920s he had three straight top-10 MVP finishes in seasons where he had zero or one homers and didn't get to 500 PAs.

In 1944 Marty Marion was the Cards' shortstop, had a .686 OPS, won the MVP award over teammate Stan Musial who OPS'd .990.  In 1947 DiMaggio had a 4.9-win season and beat Ted Williams despite Williams' 9.9-win triple crown season.  Luis Aparicio got a lot of down-ballot MVP support for 2-something win seasons.  Dick Groat won the '60 NL MVP for being the shortstop on the pennant winning Pirates with a .766 OPS and 2 homers, despite being in the same league as Willie Mays (.936 OPS), Ernie Banks (shortstop with 41 homers, 117 RBI), Hank Aaron (40 homers), Eddie Mathews, etc.  In '62 the writers thought a .720 OPS with 102 steals (Maury Wills) was more valuable than each of Willie, Frank and Hank OPSing 1.000.

 I love Boog, but he had a 5-win MVP season in '70 while Yaz was at 9.5.  Don Baylor's '79 MVP was pretty nuts - ran away with it in a 3.7-win season when Singleton, Brett, Lynn, Rice, Porter, Bell, Grich and others were clearly better to a modern set of eyes.  Stargell wasn't even in the same zip code as Keith Hernandez or Dave Winfield that same year unless you're giving him a 6-win bump for being a cool old dude to Pittsburgh fans.

You took the bait.  😁  Seriously, always enjoy your historical perspective.  But, tell me this was not all from memory and you had to look some of it up, at least the stats! 

Ted Williams was probably similar to the Albert Belle snub I would guess.  Not loved by the media so I am sure that played into it some. 

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1 hour ago, murph said:

You took the bait.  😁  Seriously, always enjoy your historical perspective.  But, tell me this was not all from memory and you had to look some of it up, at least the stats! 

Ted Williams was probably similar to the Albert Belle snub I would guess.  Not loved by the media so I am sure that played into it some. 

I knew the general facts of a lot of that, but baseball-reference is always your friend.

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2 hours ago, MongoBoy said:

Is it really worth watching him hit 40+ only to strike out 200+ times?   With many of those times with runners on?

Are you one of those guys who mistakenly believes that strikeouts are materially worse than other kinds of outs?    Davis struck out 199 times in 2013 when he drove in 138 runs and finished 3rd in the MVP voting, and 208 times in 2015 when he drove in 117 runs.    So, I really don’t care much about how many times he struck out.     Tell me what he did in the at bats where he didn’t strike out.   A 40-homer season with 200 strikeouts could be either pretty good or pretty bad, depending on those other at bats.   But it would almost certainly be better than 2017-19.     

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A strikeout doesn't move a runner.  And when he had those 199 k's, how many times was the game on the line?  Any guy can hit 50 hrs and have 150 rbis, how many of those runs won the game, and how many k's lost the game? 

The last couple of years, it seemed that when there were 2 strikes on him, he knew he was out with the next pitch.  Hopefully, he's overcome that.

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1 hour ago, MongoBoy said:

A strikeout doesn't move a runner.  And when he had those 199 k's, how many times was the game on the line?  Any guy can hit 50 hrs and have 150 rbis, how many of those runs won the game, and how many k's lost the game? 

The last couple of years, it seemed that when there were 2 strikes on him, he knew he was out with the next pitch.  Hopefully, he's overcome that.

I'll take 9 of those guys on my team and beat your team.

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1 hour ago, MongoBoy said:

A strikeout doesn't move a runner.  And when he had those 199 k's, how many times was the game on the line?  Any guy can hit 50 hrs and have 150 rbis, how many of those runs won the game, and how many k's lost the game? 

The last couple of years, it seemed that when there were 2 strikes on him, he knew he was out with the next pitch.  Hopefully, he's overcome that.

We have had this argument hundreds of times on this board.   The advantages/disadvantages of strikeouts versus other kinds of outs amount to almost nothing.    Any failures to advance a runner with a ground out or fly out are essentially canceled out by the lower double play rate.    In Davis’ case, in his career:

- Davis has made a “productive out” 25% of the time in 446 opportunities, compared to 30% of the time for an average player.   So that’s 22-23 times less than average over his 12-year career.

- Meanwhile, in 990 opportunities, Davis has hit into a double play only 6.3% of the time, compared to 10.8% for the average player.    So, that’s 44-45 fewer GIDP’s than the average player in his career.    

In short, the difference between strikeouts and other kinds of outs amounts to almost nothing.     Let me know what a player’s slash line was and I’ll judge him on that, whatever the strikeout total is.    

By the way, in 2013, the frequency with which Davis struck out “with the game on the line” was essentially no different than his overall strikeout rate.   Overall, in late and close situations, he hit .309/.378/.753.    So do I really care that he struck out 30% of the time in those situations?    Nope, so long as he was hitting the snot out of the ball when he wasn’t striking out.   

 

 

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3 hours ago, murph said:

You took the bait.  😁  Seriously, always enjoy your historical perspective.  But, tell me this was not all from memory and you had to look some of it up, at least the stats! 

Ted Williams was probably similar to the Albert Belle snub I would guess.  Not loved by the media so I am sure that played into it some. 

DiMaggio also beat out Williams for the MVP in 1941.  That was the year of Joe D's hitting streak.  For a month that summer, everyone in America was following the streak.  I'm sure that had a lot to do with his beating out Williams for the MVP.  Williams hit .406 and had the far better season, but Joe D's streak was national news at the time.

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2 hours ago, MongoBoy said:

A strikeout doesn't move a runner.  And when he had those 199 k's, how many times was the game on the line?  Any guy can hit 50 hrs and have 150 rbis, how many of those runs won the game, and how many k's lost the game? 

The last couple of years, it seemed that when there were 2 strikes on him, he knew he was out with the next pitch.  Hopefully, he's overcome that.

Five.  Five players have done that ever.  ARod, Sosa, Foxx, Wilson, Ruth.

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1 hour ago, Number5 said:

DiMaggio also beat out Williams for the MVP in 1941.  That was the year of Joe D's hitting streak.  For a month that summer, everyone in America was following the streak.  I'm sure that had a lot to do with his beating out Williams for the MVP.  Williams hit .406 and had the far better season, but Joe D's streak was national news at the time.

A little like 2002, when Miguel Tejada won the MVP over 6-8 better players because the sports writers/voters liked the story.  ARod was a shortstop in the same league as Tejada, won the gold glove, silver slugger, led the league in homers, RBI, total bases.  But Tejada was MVP because the A's had a 20-game winning streak that pushed them into first place in August and early September.

It's always been a baseball writer thing to show how smart you are by not voting for the guy who was obviously better.

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