October 2009

What? Carp no JAM rating?


ChrisCarpenter.jpgWithout further adieu, lets get on with some nuggets from the 2009 season player ratings.

You see it here.  No JAM rating for Chris Carpenter.  I tried every way I could to give Carp a JAM rating, but his .264/.375 BA/SLG with RSP/2 outs sank his ship like the great Bismarck German battleship going down to torpedo planes.  Here we have what may be the NL Cy Young winner and he was just mediocre in JAM situations.

Chris Carpenter did earn situation ratings for both OFF (very few walks to lead off batters) and ON (very few HR with runners on base).

Now if Adam Wainwright wins the Cy Young he does have a JAM (.194/.272).

This is like when 2008 Cy Young winner Cliff Lee did not get a JAM rating (Cliff did get a JAM rating in 2009 thanks to a sterling .226/.301 BA/SLG performance with RSP/2).

Wandy Rodriguez who had an excellent season also ended up NOT getting a JAM rating (.260/.403).

Whew! How about Matt Cain (.101/.152)?  Now THAT is getting out of a JAM!

Seems like an annual rite of passage that Derek Jeter’s range is discussed.  This year Jeter
worked out extensively in the off season to improve his range and reports were that his range had improved.  Despite an undewhelming Range rating of 3.90, Jeter did go from a John Dewan Fielding Bible plus/minus rating of -11 to +5.  Jeter C+ Range rating.

Jeter’s teammate Mark Teixeira slipped a bit, but still scored excellent range (B+).  Teixeira didn’t slip hitting in the clutch (.355 BA/.597 SLG) and will be a terror in the clutch on his 2009 player card.

Johnny Damon’s throwing arm is at +1 and hanging off the cliff looking at +2 below.  Damon ranked 11th in runner advancement among LF (.321).  Maybe not the +4 arm that Joe Girardi imagined in Game 3 of the ALCS when he pulled him in favor of Jerry Hairston and in the process giving up the Yankees DH and Mariano Rivera in one swoop.

Prince Fielder had what Brewer owner Mark Attanasio called the best season by a hitter in Brewers history. That would have to be an outstanding performance given some of the great seasons put up by Fielder himself, Ryan Braun and of course Cecil Cooper, Paul Molitor and Robin Yount.  Hammering away with a .343 BA and .600 SLG with RSP/2, Fielder was certainly a very large terrorizing hitter in clutch situations to any pitcher in 2009.

Ryan Howard was a curious case.  Despite hitting only .222/.444 with RSP/2, Howard was terrorizing in clutch hitting situations (.344/.781) as defined by the BIS clutch hitting performance definition:

A hitter’s performance in the most critical situations. Like obscenity, a “clutch situation” may be best defined as “I know it when I see it.” The determinants here are the things that make you feel it in your gut, including the lateness of the inning, the closeness of the score, the number of outs and men on base, the stage of the season, and the importance of the opponent.

Unheralded Brian McCann also terrorized pitchers in clutch situations (.325/.584) helping to lead the Braves to challenge for a wild card berth.

Chipper Jones may be the single most surprising player to receive a clutch hitting rating in 2009.  Jones fell off dramatically after leading the league in hitting in 2008.  While batting only .264 with a .430 SLG overall, Chipper was every bit a clutch hitter in 2009 rising to the occasion and hitting .313 with a .656 SLG.  Overall Jones had a 1.225 OPS with RSP/2 and he hit .333 with a .526 SLG with RSP. Retire?  Not yet Chipper.

As you surmised, Brad Lidge NO JAM (.294/.441 RSP/2).

Huston Street was on the cusp, but was way more effective with no one on base than in a JAM.

How many closers have ERA’s of 5.80?  Pittsburgh has Matt Capps with ugly stats with RSP (.350/.567).

Young rising Oriole star Adam Jones garners an A Range rating and -2 Throwing arm.  Jones had the highest Range factor among all cf.

Rating Oakland now and Mark Ellis did get a Clutch hitting rating despite a poor Bill James Clutch hitting performance. 

In the end, having 52 AB’s with RSP/2 and a  .423 BA/.673 SLG put him over the edge.  Ellis .423 BA with RSP/2 was 2nd in MLB among all players with 50 AB or more in RSP/2 situations. 

Ellis Range took a big hit though down to a C+.

Another sleeper for clutch hitting is Casey McGehee.  A little short on AB with 43, but I don’t see how you can ignore .512/.953.  Forget Chris Coghlan, McGehee should have been NL rookie of the year.

Best AL OF arm?  That would belong to the canon arm of Toronto’s Jose Bautista (B/-3) whose Assists, Kills and Extra Base pct. were all outstanding.

Fernando Rodney ended up being a border line case for receiving a JAM rating because of a RSP/2 SLG of over .500.   He did limit batters to a .205 BA with RSP/2 and lead the AL in save percentage to get him over the top.

Skip Schumaker’s move from the OF to 2b was a success – sort of.  Skip improved as the season went on, but could only finish with C Range because of a poor start (-14 plus/minus). Schumaker surprisingly did garner a -5 Pivot rating on the basis of his leading NL 2b in Pivot %.

The Mets Luis Castillo has gone from being one of the best at turning the DP to one of the worst and got tagged with a +5 Pivot rating at 2b.

Baseball broadcasters in the know were talking about the National’s Nyger Morgan’s range in CF all year long.  Morgan ended up with a teriffic range factor, +/- and UZR to grade out at a rare A+ range rating in CF.  Morgan is a real speed burner with a 10 Baserunning rating and 7 Steal of 2nd rating.

Another emerging player is ss Brendan Ryan, who Cardinals broadcaster Al Hrabosky felt should have won the NL Gold Glove.  Ryan was excellent in every category (A/90/-5) and lead NL ss by a wide margin with a dazzling 5.41 range factor.

The Cubs Milton Bradley?  You know what is coming here… F Intangible rating.

Edgar Renteria in 2004 weighed 180 lbs with excellent defensive metrics.  In 2009, Renteria ranked dead last among regular ss with a poor range factor of 3.86 and -10 +/-.  D range for the now 200 lb Renteria.

You have to love the Pirates Garrett Jones, who in half a season (Use 55%) has a .333 BA with A Power vs. RH.

Tim Lincecum is really tough vs. both RH and LH batters (.209/.203 BA allowed).  vs. LH Lincecum has a lights out strikeout range of 673-884.

It is a lost art, but Bengie Molina, Ramon Hernandez and Ivan Rodriguez all garnered the “BL” blocking the plate rating.

Oakland’s Ryan Sweeney was excellent while playing in rf, cf and lf in 2009 (rf: A/80/-1).  In rf, Sweeney had an eye popping +20 +/- second only to Ichiro (+21).

The 2009 season player card set can be ordered here.

 

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