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Thome and Killebrew

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#1 Curt

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 03:27 PM

At one point, I was watching a Twins game and Bert said something about Jim Thome being most proud of his batting average. This struck me as odd because I always thought of Thome as a Harmon-like hitter and Harmon was often knocked for his low batting average. Being lazy, I didn't follow up... until now. Here are comparisons of Killebrew and Thome:

[TABLE]
[TR]
[TD="width: 86, bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]
[/TD]
[TD="width: 163, bgcolor: #C0C0C0, colspan: 4"]Career[/TD]
[TD="width: 21, bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]
[/TD]
[TD="width: 168, bgcolor: #C0C0C0, colspan: 4"]League Average[/TD]
[TD="width: 21, bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]
[/TD]
[TD="width: 251, bgcolor: #C0C0C0, colspan: 4"]Percent of League Average[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD="bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]Player[/TD]
[TD="bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]BA[/TD]
[TD="bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]OBP[/TD]
[TD="bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]SA[/TD]
[TD="bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]OPS[/TD]
[TD="bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]
[/TD]
[TD="bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]BA[/TD]
[TD="bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]OBP[/TD]
[TD="bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]SA[/TD]
[TD="bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]OPS[/TD]
[TD="bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]
[/TD]
[TD="bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]BA[/TD]
[TD="bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]SA[/TD]
[TD="bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]OBP[/TD]
[TD="bgcolor: #C0C0C0"]OPS[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Killebrew[/TD]
[TD].256[/TD]
[TD].376[/TD]
[TD].509[/TD]
[TD].884[/TD]
[TD]
[/TD]
[TD].248[/TD]
[TD].318[/TD]
[TD].374[/TD]
[TD].692[/TD]
[TD]
[/TD]
[TD]103.16%[/TD]
[TD]135.93%[/TD]
[TD]118.26%[/TD]
[TD]127.82%[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Thome[/TD]
[TD].277[/TD]
[TD].403[/TD]
[TD].556[/TD]
[TD].959[/TD]
[TD]
[/TD]
[TD].268[/TD]
[TD].338[/TD]
[TD].426[/TD]
[TD].764[/TD]
[TD]
[/TD]
[TD]103.16%[/TD]
[TD]130.46%[/TD]
[TD]119.21%[/TD]
[TD]125.48%[/TD]
[/TR]
[/TABLE]


We see that Thome has much more impressive slash numbers across the board. However Harmon played during a much more pitcher dominant era. Once normalized for the differences, they are remarkably similar. In fact, their batting averages are identically 3.16% above average.

#2 snepp

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 04:31 PM

Was there an easy way you used to get the league averages?

#3 Curt

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 05:24 PM

Was there an easy way you used to get the league averages?


I use data provided by Sean Lahman downloaded into an Access database. He has other versions too.

http://www.seanlahma...ive/statistics/

#4 ashburyjohn

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 06:28 PM

Thome hit .300 a few times whereas the Killer topped out at .288. Even accounting for a higher league average, Thome topped that average by more points than Killebrew did, when he hit .314. Apart from that, hitting .300 is special to many, and it could be that Thome has that in mind when he talks about it. It is a line in the sand you can refer to if you want to say "I wasn't just a basher up there, y'know."

#5 glunn

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Posted 07 July 2012 - 02:43 AM

Imagine having both of these guys on the same team, in their primes. Thome and first base and Killebrew at third. Even with 7 Nick Puntos at the other positions, that would be a team that would score runs.

#6 Cody Christie

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 06:44 AM

Imagine having both of these guys on the same team, in their primes. Thome and first base and Killebrew at third. Even with 7 Nick Puntos at the other positions, that would be a team that would score runs.


I got a vision of seven Nick Puntos sliding head first into first base.

#7 gunnarthor

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 08:51 AM

Imagine having both of these guys on the same team, in their primes. Thome and first base and Killebrew at third. Even with 7 Nick Puntos at the other positions, that would be a team that would score runs.


Well, those late 90s Cleveland teams were pretty close - Thome, Ramirez, Alomar, among others. That was an honest to god scary lineup.

#8 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 10:32 AM

About what I'd expect from the two players given the era differences.