Jump to content

Providing independent coverage of the Minnesota Twins.
Subscribe to Twins Daily Email
Photo

Morris on Mauer

  • Please log in to reply
124 replies to this topic

#41 ThejacKmp

ThejacKmp

    Wing Commander

  • Members
  • 998 posts

Posted 14 April 2017 - 09:51 AM

The comments on Star Tribune were so dumb I almost signed up for an account. Almost.

  • Mike Sixel, Oldgoat_MN and HitInAPinch like this

#42 Brock Beauchamp

Brock Beauchamp

    Owner

  • Administrators
  • 17,915 posts

Posted 14 April 2017 - 09:58 AM

The comments on Star Tribune were so dumb I almost signed up for an account. Almost.

I couldn't resist, I had to go look.

Yep, that's the Strib comment section.


#43 ThejacKmp

ThejacKmp

    Wing Commander

  • Members
  • 998 posts

Posted 14 April 2017 - 10:01 AM

This whole thing first pitch swinging thing has never made much sense to me. Baseball Reference indicates that Joe has swung at the first pitch on 19.2% of his at bats this year. Career he's at 10.2%. The MLB average is 27.5% during his career. So he's certainly below average but it isn't comically so. 

 

Joe isn't a free swinger, that's just not his game. There's value in taking pitches - we've see that first-hand this year as the Twins have been incredibly patient. Eddie Rosario has walked twice! In the same game! Perhaps Joe is rubbing off on others?

  • 70charger and Deduno Abides like this

#44 ThejacKmp

ThejacKmp

    Wing Commander

  • Members
  • 998 posts

Posted 14 April 2017 - 10:02 AM

 

I couldn't resist, I had to go look.

Yep, that's the Strib comment section.

Like there were four times I was like, "I need to go on and explain reality to this moron" and then I had to breath out and realize it was not worth it. I guess I'm maturing?

  • Mike Sixel, Oldgoat_MN, WLFINN and 1 other like this

#45 Brock Beauchamp

Brock Beauchamp

    Owner

  • Administrators
  • 17,915 posts

Posted 14 April 2017 - 10:02 AM

 

This whole thing first pitch swinging thing has never made much sense to me. Baseball Reference indicates that Joe has swung at the first pitch on 19.2% of his at bats this year. Career he's at 10.2%. The MLB average is 27.5% during his career. So he's certainly below average but it isn't comically so. 

10.2% versus 27.5% is kind of a comically large gap.

 

He doesn't have enough plate appearances this season to really judge if there's a trend, though I hope there is.

  • Mike Sixel likes this

#46 ashburyjohn

ashburyjohn

    26th Man

  • Twins Mods
  • 14,501 posts
  • LocationNatick, MA

Posted 14 April 2017 - 10:26 AM

Generally agree, except all walks aren't "good." Not all OBP is created equally. "Empty OBP" can be an accurate descriptor just as much as "empty batting average." Runs win games, not base runners.

When Mauer refuses to attempt to drive in a run against a RH pitcher, leaving that job to a lesser RH hitter behind him, in the long run he's not helping win games.


This way of looking at things is basically the other side of the coin from Casey At The Bat, except with Flynn and Jimmy Blake coming after Casey in the lineup.

 

Mauer's not batted 7th that much, so Flynn and Blake aren't coming up next. Instead this year we have Sano. And even when it's not been Sano, and is some other right-handed batter, few such guys make it to the majors being terrible at hitting right-handers and yet are inserted in the middle of a lineup. Probably in the dark days of 2011-2014 we could find certain instances where that was the case, and then I'd be all-in on asking Joe to pick one he likes and just give it a rip even if it's the first pitch.

 

But there is one thing in common with Casey At The Bat and the desire to see a swing instead of a walk: the tacit assumption that once Casey does swing, it's going to be hit safely. But it's only a probability. And it's easy to grant that Joe probably will hit safely more often than Trevor Plouffe and those of his ilk. But a lower probability, with higher payoff due to another duck being on the pond, makes it a closer choice than "empty OBP" suggests.
 

I couldn't resist, I had to go look.

Yep, that's the Strib comment section.


I can't count the number of times I've issued Moderator Notes over there, only to have them be ABSOLUTELY IGNORED.

  • Brock Beauchamp, glunn, diehardtwinsfan and 3 others like this

Nothing is over until we decide it is! Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?


#47 killertwinfan

killertwinfan

    Elizabethton

  • Members
  • 34 posts

Posted 14 April 2017 - 01:04 PM

 

I don't think they're afraid of anything, I think they're operating above a level we understand.

 

As I've said from day one, what happened leading up to the season matters far less to me than how the front office reacts to things that do not work. That was easily my biggest gripe with the old front office; the thinking that led to keeping around half the bullpen pieces when they were well past their expiration date in June and July.

I am 100% with you on that.  June, if not sooner in some cases,  is going to be very interesting from a personnel standpoint, probably on both the 40 man and active rosters. Most likely, we'll see how strongly they are committed to the future vs making a mistake of letting go of pieces that aren't performing or aren't part of our future. 

  • Brock Beauchamp likes this

#48 Oldgoat_MN

Oldgoat_MN

    Baseball Games. Life is good!

  • Members
  • 1,583 posts

Posted 14 April 2017 - 01:31 PM

 

Like there were four times I was like, "I need to go on and explain reality to this moron" and then I had to breath out and realize it was not worth it. I guess I'm maturing?

SSS.

Not sure we should jump to conclusions yet.

  • ashburyjohn, birdwatcher, ThejacKmp and 1 other like this

Don't believe everything you read on the Internet just because it has a name or a photo you recognize.

- Abraham Lincoln


#49 birdwatcher

birdwatcher

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 2,967 posts

Posted 14 April 2017 - 02:04 PM

 

Since A-Rod was drafted 1-1 in 1993, Mauer has the most WAR of any 1-1 pick. At this point, the old gray Mauer just ain't what he used to be, but two sets of management still think he's their best choice for playing time, based on doing what he does and not what he did or could do. Sure, it would be great if he could be a 5 WAR player again, but it's sad how much rancor and bitterness people seem to have for him.

 

 

Again, I just don't see this rampant rancor and bitterness I guess, on TD anyway. It's a handful of commenters perhaps that you're thinking about.

 

And again, there's a marked difference between complaining about his falloff in production or his contract, which most of us are not complaining about, and the complaint being registered in a controlled manner about two things: his failure to adjust his hitting style in response to the new challenges, and his failure to adapt his approach with RISP. 

  • USAFChief, Mike Sixel, KGB and 1 other like this

#50 DrNeau

DrNeau

    Chattanooga Lookouts

  • Members
  • 736 posts
  • LocationOrlando, FL

Posted 14 April 2017 - 03:09 PM

All teams' outfields are shifting to extreme left.

It would be interesting to see an opposing team shift two outfielders to the left side (as they all are doing), but bring the RF in from right center and put him behind 2B. Any fielder in the outfield on the right-half side of the field is useless.

Edited by DrNeau, 14 April 2017 - 03:11 PM.


#51 Brock Beauchamp

Brock Beauchamp

    Owner

  • Administrators
  • 17,915 posts

Posted 14 April 2017 - 06:26 PM

This way of looking at things is basically the other side of the coin from Casey At The Bat, except with Flynn and Jimmy Blake coming after Casey in the lineup.

Mauer's not batted 7th that much, so Flynn and Blake aren't coming up next. Instead this year we have Sano. And even when it's not been Sano, and is some other right-handed batter, few such guys make it to the majors being terrible at hitting right-handers and yet are inserted in the middle of a lineup. Probably in the dark days of 2011-2014 we could find certain instances where that was the case, and then I'd be all-in on asking Joe to pick one he likes and just give it a rip even if it's the first pitch.

But there is one thing in common with Casey At The Bat and the desire to see a swing instead of a walk: the tacit assumption that once Casey does swing, it's going to be hit safely. But it's only a probability. And it's easy to grant that Joe probably will hit safely more often than Trevor Plouffe and those of his ilk. But a lower probability, with higher payoff due to another duck being on the pond, makes it a closer choice than "empty OBP" suggests.

I can't believe I missed this post earlier, as it's excellent. This is really the point I'm trying to drive home: if a middle of the order hitter "punts" on his plate appearance by adding another runner to the base paths with a walk, that's a good thing. The assumption has to be that the middle of the order doesn't fall from a .900 OPS player to a .500 OPS player; the player hitting behind Mauer now has *at least* two runners on base. That's a good situation.
  • glunn and Sconnie like this

#52 Sconnie

Sconnie

    From the "right" side of the St Croix

  • Members
  • 2,790 posts
  • LocationNW Wisconsin

Posted 14 April 2017 - 07:33 PM

It we dig a little deeper and go beyond OBP and AVG you will find that his ISO with RISP from 14-17 is 268th in the league at .119:

http://www.fangraphs...&sort=11,1&pg=8

The trend line is not getting better on this either. Looking at just 16-17 numbers his ISO with RISP got worse and ranked 296th at .080:

http://www.fangraphs...&sort=11,1&pg=9

Joe is going to walk 1/4 of the time with RISP. He is going to hit for a high average but he isn't going to hit for power and get RBI in bunches. That has value but it also warrants criticism, especially because that lack of power comes from a man who stands 6'5.

hes tall so he should be a slugger? He's not a slugger, that's ok. He provides value with his obp. I understand the want for him to adjust his approach when he gets served up the first pitch cookie, but I don't get that.

#53 DrNeau

DrNeau

    Chattanooga Lookouts

  • Members
  • 736 posts
  • LocationOrlando, FL

Posted 14 April 2017 - 07:48 PM

Jack Morris made these comments on 4/11/17

 

Bert Blyleven has made similar comments tonight. Dick Bremer attempted to apologize for Joe, while Bert persisted. 

Edited by DrNeau, 14 April 2017 - 07:58 PM.


#54 mikelink45

mikelink45

    Junior Member

  • Members
  • 874 posts

Posted 14 April 2017 - 07:53 PM

This is really an interesting discussion.  As an old time baseball fan (Milwaukee Braves in the 1950s, I see the value of sabremetrics and I also have some deep questions about some of their conclusions.  The object is to score runs.  On base is great, but it does not always score runs.  Sacrifice flies were created because they recognize that getting the runner home is the objective.  

 

Walks are great, especially for the top two players in the lineup, but an out that gets the run in is better than the walk that is stranded.  I am not against walks, but we have not come up with an analytic tool that measures all the variables about walks in different situations.  It is the same with Ks.  I am not one who accepts the strikeout as just another out. When a ball is put in play the defense is challenged, runners can advance, errors can happen.

 

Mauer is a player for whom I hold no grudge.  He did not write his own contract, but he is a bottom of the order guy now and there is value to an end of the lineup guy who gets on base. 

 

I think Morris is fine in his evaluation and it is not Mauer bashing nor is it just old school.

  • Ex-Iowegian and djvang like this

#55 DrNeau

DrNeau

    Chattanooga Lookouts

  • Members
  • 736 posts
  • LocationOrlando, FL

Posted 14 April 2017 - 07:54 PM

4/14/17

 

1st Inning

0-0
Runners on 1st and 2nd
No outs

Pitch 1: Fastball - TAKEN - strike 1
Pitch 2: Curve - TAKEN - ball 1
Pitch 3: Change - TAKEN - strike 2
Pitch 4: Fastball - Fouled to LEFT SIDE (has no business hitting to left side in this situation)
Pitch 5: Fastball - TAKEN - ball 2 (just off the plate)
Pitch 6: Fastball - chopper to SS - DOUBLE PLAY (again - has no business hitting ball to left side in this situation)

 

3rd inning

Tie game

Runner on 1st

1 out

Pitch 1: Mauer shows BUNT and TAKES strike 1. 

Pitch 2: TAKES fastball ball 1. 

Pitch 3: Mauer shows BUNT and TAKES strike 2.

Pitch 4: TAKES ball 2. 

Pitch 5: CHOPPER to 1B; out at 2B. 

 

What's with the showing bunt with 1 out? This is our 3-hole hitter. Honestly; what is going on with him? It's serious, and people are acting like it's not.

Edited by DrNeau, 14 April 2017 - 08:02 PM.

  • Taildragger8791 likes this

#56 drjim

drjim

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 6,771 posts
  • LocationSt. Paul

Posted 14 April 2017 - 07:55 PM

If nothing else, it is a little interesting that some of the former players in the media are taking some shots at Mauer.

I personally think all this is a distraction from the fact that Mauer is a shell of what he was before. Tweaks to his approach isn't going to change that reality.
  • Oxtung and djvang like this
Papers...business papers.

#57 DrNeau

DrNeau

    Chattanooga Lookouts

  • Members
  • 736 posts
  • LocationOrlando, FL

Posted 14 April 2017 - 08:05 PM

True, the few MN media people who have had the guts are Jack & Bert. Bremer did not sound comfortable agreeing with Bert, laughing a little bit.

 

Mauer is clearly looking to walk first and swing second (if he swings, he will not hit the ball in the air to RF), and teams are exposing that. Big time. 

Edited by DrNeau, 14 April 2017 - 08:07 PM.

  • djvang likes this

#58 Brock Beauchamp

Brock Beauchamp

    Owner

  • Administrators
  • 17,915 posts

Posted 14 April 2017 - 08:06 PM

 

This is really an interesting discussion.  As an old time baseball fan (Milwaukee Braves in the 1950s, I see the value of sabremetrics and I also have some deep questions about some of their conclusions.  The object is to score runs.  On base is great, but it does not always score runs.  Sacrifice flies were created because they recognize that getting the runner home is the objective.  

 

Walks are great, especially for the top two players in the lineup, but an out that gets the run in is better than the walk that is stranded.  I am not against walks, but we have not come up with an analytic tool that measures all the variables about walks in different situations.  It is the same with Ks.  I am not one who accepts the strikeout as just another out. When a ball is put in play the defense is challenged, runners can advance, errors can happen.

 

Mauer is a player for whom I hold no grudge.  He did not write his own contract, but he is a bottom of the order guy now and there is value to an end of the lineup guy who gets on base. 

 

I think Morris is fine in his evaluation and it is not Mauer bashing nor is it just old school.

To give a short and sweet answer: sabermetrics is also about scoring runs, they simply analyze in the aggregate to counter "old housewives' tales".

 

No one is trying to say that sac flies don't matter. As sabermetrics advance, they don't counteract every "old school" baseball theory, in fact they reaffirm some of them such as pitch framing.

 

But there are many old, bad ideas in baseball. And sabr tries to move past some of those bad ideas. One of those bad ideas was that walks are both the fault of the pitcher and are relatively worthless from an offensive standpoint.

  • Sconnie likes this

#59 USAFChief

USAFChief

    ɹǝɯoפ

  • Twins Mods
  • 17,013 posts
  • LocationTucson

Posted 14 April 2017 - 10:35 PM

To give a short and sweet answer: sabermetrics is also about scoring runs, they simply analyze in the aggregate to counter "old housewives' tales".

No one is trying to say that sac flies don't matter. As sabermetrics advance, they don't counteract every "old school" baseball theory, in fact they reaffirm some of them such as pitch framing.

But there are many old, bad ideas in baseball. And sabr tries to move past some of those bad ideas. One of those bad ideas was that walks are both the fault of the pitcher and are relatively worthless from an offensive standpoint.

walks ARE the fault of the pitcher.

And I've been around a long time and never heard anyone say walks are worthless.
  • Taildragger8791 likes this

I am not the paranoid you're looking for.


#60 djvang

djvang

    Elizabethton

  • Members
  • 43 posts

Posted 14 April 2017 - 10:35 PM

 

4/14/17

 

1st Inning

0-0
Runners on 1st and 2nd
No outs

Pitch 1: Fastball - TAKEN - strike 1
Pitch 2: Curve - TAKEN - ball 1
Pitch 3: Change - TAKEN - strike 2
Pitch 4: Fastball - Fouled to LEFT SIDE (has no business hitting to left side in this situation)
Pitch 5: Fastball - TAKEN - ball 2 (just off the plate)
Pitch 6: Fastball - chopper to SS - DOUBLE PLAY (again - has no business hitting ball to left side in this situation)

 

3rd inning

Tie game

Runner on 1st

1 out

Pitch 1: Mauer shows BUNT and TAKES strike 1. 

Pitch 2: TAKES fastball ball 1. 

Pitch 3: Mauer shows BUNT and TAKES strike 2.

Pitch 4: TAKES ball 2. 

Pitch 5: CHOPPER to 1B; out at 2B. 

 

What's with the showing bunt with 1 out? This is our 3-hole hitter. Honestly; what is going on with him? It's serious, and people are acting like it's not.

I only saw his last AB tonight - hard line drive to left center, center fielder who was playing there didn't have to move a step. Meanwhile, right field remains wide open. Joe. Won't. Adjust. That's the whole problem I have with him.

 

I really hope Jack & Bert keep the discussion going. My only quibble with Bert is that he said Joe is an All-Star. No, he WAS an All-Star. Big difference.

Edited by djvang, 14 April 2017 - 10:39 PM.

  • birdwatcher likes this