ON THE SHOW:
David Kaplan (@thekapman), WGN/CSN Chicago - 4:45(ish)
Ken Silverstien, Big Ten dude - 5:05
- NBA Playoffs
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- Big Ten/ACC Challenge pairings - Iowa vs. Notre Dame
QUICK HIT: What do stats tell us about baseball?
By Joe Quinn (@joequinnshow)
The stats never lie. Or do they?
I'm working on a bigger blog about stats in baseball this year (and the discrepency between who makes the big bucks, and who is being productive this year), and had to stop and think for a minute - what exactly do the stats tell us in baseball?
There are a thousand different stats out there now - your traditional BA, HR, TB, RBI's, etc.; some more advanced basic stats such as .OPS and .WHIP; and your newer "sabermetic" stats such as WAR. All of them have merit, but they don't always tell the big picture.
Let's take two players, who both play for the same team: Josh Hamilton and Mark Trumbo.
Trumbo leads the team in HR (9), RBI (23), Hits (38), .OPS (.923), and several other categories. Basic Sabermetic stats favor Trumbo as well - he's second on the team to Mike Trout in OWAR (offensive wins above replacement) with 1.2.
Hamilton, on the other hand, ranks near the bottom of the team (and the league for that matter), in most categories: OPS (.535), HR (2), RBI (9), AVG (.202), among others.
Every team has to have guys at the top, and guys at the bottom, right? Well, the problem is Trumbo is making a mere $540,000, while Hamilton is in a league of his own at $17.4 million with bonuses.
Now, the question becomes, who would you rather have? Trumbo or Hamilton?
Most baseball people would probably tell you Trumbo (younger, more years of club control, lower salary). Most fans would say Hamilton (big star, prime of his career, etc.).
There's also no question Hamilton is a better player than his stat line indicates, and Trumbo might be over-achieving.
If it were me, I'd opt for Trumbo for the reasons I just laid out - but theres a lot of Hamilton fans out there too.
Just something to think about when you assume the higher paid players are always the better ones.