|hny2k (hny2k) wrote in baseball,|
@ 2007-09-27 12:59:00
Two questionable statistics
There are two related statistics that I've wondered about for a long time, and wanted to get opinions about them.
The first is team runners left on base (ie, runners left on base per team as opposed to per player). I know the statistic is meant to measure "chances missed", but does it really do that? As an example, if someone pitches a perfect game then by definition the opposing team will have 0 runners left on, but is that somehow good? Conversely a team that scores 20 runs will probably have gobs of runners left on. I think then what I'm disagreeing with is the notion that these are chances "missed", since they were at least chances to begin with, which is half the battle.
Relatedly I've also often questioned "clutch" hitting statistics: batting average with runners in scoring position and other similar numbers. Of course the higher these are the better, but don't they forget that in order to get to that point you have to have a good average in all other situations as well? If every player on a team has a great batting average with runners on 2nd and/or 3rd, it does them no good if every player also has a lousy batting average with the bases empty, since it means that they'll never get to the clutch situation in the first place. It seems to me that both statistics are equally important; it's just that we tend to only remember the "clutch" at bats because of their increased drama.
Or maybe I'm missing something here. Thoughts?